The Bookends of the Prepping Life: Investing and Diversifying, by Mr. B.

I was a “closet” prepper until recently. Years ago, I began to slowly amass both long-life food and countless resources that would be necessary if basic commodities were no longer available. The spark, if you will, was in the wake of reading articles about global shifts that sought to deconstruct and reconstruct economies based on dangerous ideologies. I also purchased hard assets in case conventional means of buying ceased overnight, for I read of once strong banks and currencies collapsing or weakening with each financial year.

Recently, with the events leading up and still being felt because of COVD-19, I became more open about my prepping lifestyle, as I witnessed misinformation shut down global economies, medical assumptions stated as “facts” and differing views persecuted and suppressed, and precedents becoming policies. That is not to say that I told everyone I know that I have been quietly prepping for years and that they need to do the same, but rather, I began connecting with like-minded preppers in the online community and will slowly introduce the concept to others. I am still on this journey.

In enjoying my interactions with those who are preppers, mostly online as it is difficult to connect with other preppers locally (as it is not something one broadcasts or has a group meeting once a week), it has also been beneficial to read articles of the experiences of those who are preppers, of successes and failures. There is a lot of good material out there, but there are also poorly researched and sensational writings pieces as well. Preppers should not think of themselves as prophets, but purveyors of truth. It has been a blessing, however, to read articles from a variety of different perspectives and of not only what to buy and do as a prepper, but how to act and think as a prepper.

It is my intention in this article to share some thoughts I have in my own experiences and wide reading in relation to what I will phrase are the bookends of the prepping life; investing and diversifying. This may not be ground-breaking, but it may be new to some, while for the veteran prepper, I hope that it will refresh and even revise your train of thought.

Broadening how you think of Investing

When we think of the word invest, we most often think of financial. We believe that investing is putting money into something and expecting (nay, hoping) it will grow in value and worth. In reality, investing is so much more than that. To truly invest in something is to consider something worthy of not just your money, but your time and effort. Time is more valuable than money, for you can never amass or reclaim the former. As such, we need to start thinking of investment as being a mindset in relation to prepping, for what we place both our seconds and actions into, needs to have value that transcends my bank account or portfolio. Its profitability should be determined as if money itself didn’t exist. This is not to say that we don’t need money, that is foolish, but what I am saying is that we should not see “investment” as solely a financial goal, for we have seen throughout history, in our nations and perhaps in our households, how finances can fall away far quicker than it took the time for them to rise.

A prepper then, must invest in individuals and community, researching, and skills.
We need to invest in individuals and in community. By invest, I do not mean use someone or being insincere in starting a new friendship, but I mean that men and women are not meant to be alone. The “lone wolf” lifestyle some preppers edify is self-defeating and cannot be sustained long-term. Even a Swiss Army Knife needs sharpening at some point! There is strength in numbers and two or more are more effective than one of anything.

We as human beings were meant to be communal and must understand the bad and good capable in humanity. We can not do it all and it is mentally and socially healthy to work alongside and with those with differing interests, personalities and skills, as it is for them to be working with us. Preppers must not feign morality in their choices and lifestyle, for helping another in the worst of times, ensures that we have help when we are not in the best of times.

We need to invest in researching about national and world affairs, history and laws, nature and science, politics and religion, and other relevant matters. This is a neglected investment, one that is vital in an ever-changing and growing world. Knowledge in power. Understanding what something is and how and why something works, is as important as understanding where and when it did. You and your country are not the only inhabitants of earth. You should know about the differences between capitalism and socialism. You should know how global markets work.

You should know where your local water bodies are, where you can purchase hard to find resources, and how an ecosystem works. You should understand the laws in your state and online, how to change a car tire, and erect a tent. You should know the differences within Christianity, Islam, Atheism, Communism, and about cultures and languages differing from your own. You may think some of these examples to be useless, but to do so, reveals a tunneled thinking and does not take into consideration the difference as much as the similarities there are in the world. Nothing will be wasted, you will grow in character, and one day such information may be essential for you or another’s survival.

Finally, skills are those abilities needed to perform a given task based on learned information and personal experience. One should learn a new skill each week, at most a month, and one can do so through free and paid courses as well as voluntary work and mentoring. How one assembles, builds, creates, and fixes is vital to everyday living. Learning how to hunt or forage, clean and cook in general, check your car’s oil and gas, can and preserve produce, make candles and soaps, dress wounds and identify medicinal herbs you’ve established in your garden, know how to sew and repair clothing and shoes, are just a handful of skills that are invaluable as they often can be used in more than one context or scenario and are teachable to others.

The more skills you have, the more you are able to survive all that comes your way and can build up your community. Hence, investing in skills connects us to the need to diversify, for we should not think of engaging only in skills that are relevant to us. Our greatest growth it outside our comfort zone.

Ensure Diversifying in All Aspects

A good teacher in the classroom will teach their students the importance in diversifying their knowledge and skillset. They will stress that one should ensure a wide reading of materials in order to establish a general knowledge of the world in which they live, regardless of whether the information is relevant to their everyday walk. A well-rounded individual, one whose knowledge stretches across subject matter, ensures that they are not ignorant and uninformed about the past, present, and possible future. Likewise, the student that diversifies their skills so to ensure that they can perform the most basic of tasks as well as consider the most difficult, ensures that they are not so specialized as to not be able to operate outside their sphere of expertise. For them, there is not one path prepared, but many; there is more than “Plan A”.

In connecting investing with diversifying through skills, a prepper must go on to diversify their assets, disciplines, and resources.

Regarding assets, the old saying “don’t put all your eggs in one basket” is true. Prepping costs money, money you may not have if your income were reduced or ended down the path. If you have a growth in finances or are able to budget so that you can put some of your income away for a period of time, purchasing items that will have multiple uses, long-term uses, or be able to be sold later for greater uses, is desirable. Money in the bank gaining interest is fine, but don’t let it be your only asset. Start small if need be, for example, tools. Some tools never go out of fashion and can last the test of time. If you have antiques, determine what is worth something and what is better as cash in your hand right now. As finances grow, purchase gold and silver, no matter the size, and research other “hard” assets. By having assets as a prepper, you can fund future purchases or position yourself as a credible barterer.

By disciplines, I am referring to the structure of one’s day and how it is ordered and the way in which time is utilized. Concrete templates made by us soon crumble, for each day brings with it challenges and differences that render our best-laid plans asunder. Changes in finances, health, family and external factors beyond our control must be accounted for. The best disciplines must adapt over time, as life changes all the time. Be flexible, be willing to change your task around, be able to prioritize, and do what you can and do it now, rather than dreaming of what you think you can and never starting. Create walls between you and distractions, temptations, time-wasting activities, and vices, the create doors for you to walk towards those activities that will grow and strengthen you, body, mind and soul.

Resources are those items and products that assist and ensure that we survive, regardless of their need at this moment in time. “Always be prepared” implies there will be times, perhaps never, that you will need something because of a situation. It is imperative that you create a list of resources needed by you, your family and if possible, others in need. Your list will differ from mine and that’s alright.

While finances will dictate the volume of your resources, that does not necessarily mean it will dictate their value. Clothing, food, equipment and tools, accessories and utensils, anything classed as a commodity. It doesn’t matter if you buy the cheapest label of packaged food or discounted items close to expiry date; food is food and something is better than nothing. Buying one can of food a week and putting it away is better than not starting at all, because you think you need to buy a carton’s worth at once.

Start building inventory at your local discount store, weekend markets, or second-hand thrift store. Build, not hoard, resources that will assist you today as much as a year down the track, regularly used or never to be used. Bulk purchases are great, but bit by bit is just as clever. Expenses purchased today are expenses absent tomorrow and we have seen that the most basic of staples can disappear and become rationed when the masses determine a want becomes a need.


If the bookends of the prepping life are investing and diversifying, the bookcase, the foundation, of which it entirely rests upon needs to be YHWH, the one and only God of the Scriptures. One point that was magnified in the wake of COVD-19 was that even the most prepared prepper was rattled and shocked at how everyday life changed overnight, let alone the general population’s reaction. What people had placed all their trust in, came crashing down in an instant. For at the end of the day, all the prepping, all the investing and diversifying, will amount to nothing without a foundation that is unshakeable, a worldview with absolutes, and that is only found in and through Jesus Christ, the God of Scriptures made flesh. While the Scriptures are replete with calls to prepare and provide for your family and community, Christ Jesus’ words on the importance of Him as a foundation are the starting point of any prepper’s journey to true security, both in this life and the next:

“Why do you call Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say? Everyone who comes to Me and hears My words and acts on them, I will show you whom he is like: he is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid a foundation on the rock; and when a flood occurred, the torrent burst against that house and could not shake it, because it had been well built. But the one who has heard and has not acted accordingly is like a man who built a house on the ground without any foundation; and the torrent burst against it and immediately it collapsed, and the ruin of that house was great” (Luke 6:46-49)


  1. You are an interesting person, Mr. B, and a fine writer as well. A level headed and non-reactionary approach to the “prepping mindset” is good to read. It signifies an involved and responsible individual rather than one who is scurrying beneath the woodpile.

  2. Thank you, Mr. B for an interesting and informative and inspirational article — well written, and very much appreciated! I often “sign off” my posts with the words “Remain steady.” I saw that message also through and through your message, and could not agree more.

  3. Well thought out article. I sure you do not mind me distributing it to friends. Your positive approach with thoughtful consideration should be our methodology in preparing. This is a great analysis of the beginning to a long journey. I often find myself a bit overwhelmed by my lists of things to do and am a bit scattered upon occasion. I am printing your article out to read at those times just to re-center my self. Thank you very much for the info and the inspiration.

    1. Hello Joe! Sometimes the lists can be overwhelming… Wanted to share a strategy that has worked well for us in addition to the most excellent thoughts of Mr. B.

      We have found that dividing our lists by “small” vs. “medium” vs. “big” tasks helps tremendously. From there we outline about a year at a time by prioritizing and assigning our big tasks to no more than one or two per quarter (and depending on the size, we might even make these one or two for the entire year). Medium sized tasks are monthly or quarterly. Smaller tasks can be anything from weekly to monthly.

      This kind of organization also allows us to organize by season where appropriate, and to plan financially as well.

      We’ve found additionally that this approach is positive from the standpoint of prepper psychology. We can track our progress, review and revise plans, and have a solid direction moving forward into the future.

      Hope this helps to support and encourage your efforts!

      1. Thank you Telesilla of Argos. We are so fortunate for the Survival Blog where many helpful suggestions, ideas and encouragement are available. Many thanks to JWR et al.

      2. Excellent approach. I often suffer from paralysis by analysis. This small, medium or large approach as well as Mr. B’s encouragement of doing something even if small will be helpful.

  4. Great article. Well written!
    When I started “prepping”, I started with JWR’s “List of Lists” that I think is available somewhere on this website. At first it was very overwhelming, but I took that list and put it into a spreadsheet (cuz I’m a spreadsheet kind of person). I then modified it to fit my life, and slowly started hacking away at it. I also used the Mormon food calculator, which is available online to get a sense for how much of each type of food to stock up on, and again, modified it to fit my family.

    I make realistic annual goals, then monthly goals, then weekly To Do lists. This past year was all about getting well supplied in the food arena, canning and dehydrating supplies, starting a garden, setting up a sewing (and music) center with supplies, and putting in a wood burning stove with a cook top. When I look back, I’m amazed at how much was accomplished in a short 12 months.

    I also put away “time wasters”, so I don’t do social media for the most part, and don’t have a television. I started buying and reading books, which I used to do voraciously, that would educate me on various topics. None of this is to brag in any way, shape, or form. I felt it was time to make prepping a priority. I’ve already started on next year’s priorities. God willing.

    Hugs to all!

  5. Good morning all.

    I’d like to start by saying thanks to all who contribute to this blog from the Rawles family, to those that write articles and especially to those that offer comments. It is a learning experience to read this blog and to that I read it daily to my wife and we discuss it and adjust our priorities when something motivates us in a specific direction. Let me also say we have prepped for many years and now live at our retreat location in a very rural area. We are well situated in terms of location, gear, supplies and knowledge. Although not yet at a level of self sufficiency we would be able to sustain for years which brings a level of comfort to us in our prepping journey.

    I’d like to offer the comment that JWR’s books Patriots and How to Survive the End of the World are so filled with information that they could be used as a basis for how and what Preppers should work at accomplishing. When you outgrow those parameters in his books you will really have achieved something. My old copies are tattered from reading and re-reading that I’ve had to over them with plastic sheeting to hold them together. They are full of my notes and sketches along with numerous highlighted passages. If you are a new prepper and don’t have these books they should be some of the first books to get you started off in the right direction. Another added benefit is when a potential prepper indicates an interest (although we try to keep our prepping low profile) and asks questions I always suggest they purchase those books and to let me know when they have finished reading them. It serves several purposed, one being it provides a good foundation to build on and the more important is to identify those who will actually do something to prepare other than to try and figure out where you live so they can show up when they are hungry….

    Blessings to all.

    1. Excellent, Red Rover.

      Having read, and reread the practical books JWR wrote, I must agree. Application of knowledge and skills. I still have much to learn in that realm. I’ll say that his fiction is instructive as well.

      Carry on in grace

    1. It’s strange that they could not bond out… No judge available? Seriously? Rioters accused of arson and other heinous crimes are being let out, and apparently in some jurisdictions they aren’t even being required to post bail. In some locations prosecutors are refusing to prosecute. …and yet, Millie Weaver and her husband were held through the weekend? Something appears to be terribly amiss here. I am, of course, open to a truthful and reasonable explanation — but I wonder if there is one. Arraignment is supposed to happen tomorrow, Monday. Hope and pray this is resolved for them quickly, and they are in no serious danger.

      1. I do not know. I just never heard of the lady on the video and when I did a search online saw the articles where they were’abducted’. So I have no clue. Frightening though. The whole world has gone mad

  6. Yes all kinds of criminals out immediately. Those they want to silence or make an example of not the case. Just read on the Orlando Sentinel (regular local paper) George Soros is funding a D A in orange county! Not secretly now his name listed on the headline! We are in dangerous times

  7. I think it’s obvious the Rule of Law is dead for law abiding individuals. What is being substituted for it is political persecution and no one is fighting back that are in authority.

    It seems the left is confident that they will sweep the elections in November. However, even if the GOP keeps one House does it matter? No! They are complicit in this Coup against a duly elected President.

    Anyway, since the masks are off and the Marxist are clearly telling us what they intend to do, than society as we have know it will change the day they try to confiscate Americans guns and after guns property.

    Question how will that turn out?

  8. No one knows. Pray and tell all you can of the issues really going on. And Vote. I have no doubt they will try to ‘buy back’ (confiscate) self protection tools. Once they do that they can do anything. Look how much control of our lives has been lost. Thankfully (just found out today. Haven’t watched medical updates because faucci and Birx make me sick) Dr Atlas is on the Presidents medical team now. We can only pray this helps. I’m sure all know the fate of Dr Smith from NJ once all found out he guided the President on hydroxyclorquine.

      1. Don’t know how to post a link. Article on WND just do a search and the article comes up. The hospital system is Barnabas Health system headquarded in Livingston NJ. If you recall the President said a ‘NY area ‘ doctor recommended the hydroxyclorquine. Back in May when the Pres stated this on a Mon or Tues by Fri Dr smith was forbidden by a Dr Lincoln Miller to stop the protocol at the Hospital. Look it up sorry.

  9. I watched the video early this morning, and now it is deleted. The arrests seem ludicrous at first glance. But, the narrative is not going to favor Ms. Weaver, or her husband. My prayers for their survival, as I fear they will CONVIENTLY DIE while in custody.

    When I was a teenager, being allowed into my parents/their peers/WWII generation Christmas holiday discussions for the first time, post-1968 riots here in Baltimore; I made the huge mistake (age 15) of stating that the country was headed for a 2nd Civil War.

    I was immediately shouted down by one, and all. Democrats, every single one of them. Some as liberal as they come, some open-minded, some as bigoted and racist as Nathan Bedford Forest himself.

    I had witnessed first hand the fear that the average white person living in my very segregated neighborhood had when downtown Baltimore was burning during the ’68 riots. The fear that the looting , burning, and destruction would move uptown some 10 miles, or so was thick enough to cut with a knife.

    My parents generation, and indeed most of my peers in junior high school at that time, had no clue what a HUGE paradigm shift had occurred in 1968.

    Perhaps it was my love of history, and all.the reading I did (still do); but I was able to see it then, and make that statement to my parents, their in-laws, and friends.

    My reasoning that the country was being split apart upon color lines, a concerted effort was being made to disarm the nation, the 2nd Ammendment was under attack so as to eventually be removed from the Constitution, and that there was a portion of those in power that wanted every American to surrender their Constitutional rights to be ruled like the Soviet Union was met with scorn & ridicule.

    Apparently, at age 15, even though my opinion HAD BEEN SOLICITED, I was still considered a child to be seen, and not heard.

    It was THE LAST TIME that I was invited to join in an adult conversation at the holidays, until I returned from the military at age 29.

    Fast forward 51 years, and my worst fears, magnified tenfold, are coming home to roost. A Second Civil War seems inevitable, and the socialist/communist/leftist/Black Lives Matters/Democratic Party/Republican Party/Deep State/National Security Agency/FEMA/FBI/CIA/State Department/Homeland Security/United States Military/Military-Industrial Complex/private contractors/any branch of the Federal government that you can name (and some that YOU CAN’T); seems hell bent on disarming our nation at any cost, and brainwashing Americans into accepting a country that Lenin & Stalin would have had NO TROUBLE identifying with.

    And if as I fear, a new civil war breaks out in the current United States, I don’t think that those in power that are provoking these events have ANY IDEA what the final outcome is going to be. If it is anything like I fear, then the death toll is going to be in the billions worldwide. China, Russia, and a consortium of European countries will look at the U.S.A. as a ripe plum to be picked.

    Alaska, Canada, and the contiguous 48 states still have VAST timber, and mineral wealth that many other nations covet. Any American that thinks that our country can survive a civil war, and return to a 50 state nation; is in my opinion being foolishly optimistic.

    One of my favorite people when I was fourteen was a lady that eventually became one of the first ordained female Presbyterian ministers. My mother was complaining to her (out of my hearing, she thought), that she wished that I was more religious, and that I would attend church. The lady in question told my mother, quite to my surprise, that while I was not religious, I was one of the most spiritual person’s that she had ever met; and not to worry about me, as God had his eye on me.

    At 14, I pretty much poo-poo’d what she said. I had made a deal at 13 years old with my father to attend Confirmation Classes at my mother’s Reformed Luthern church. The deal was that I would be confirmed, and afterwards it would be up to me whether, or not I attended church hence.

    In preparation for the summer classes the following year, I read my Children’s Bible, the King James Bible, and the English translations of the Old Testament. Halfway through the classes, the pastor threatened to excommunicate me when I kept asking him for clarification on a point that he was trying to make. When I continued quoting passages in the bible that contradicted his original statement, he just got angrier. He was one of those men who hated to have his authority questioned in ANY WAY, especially by a 13 year old kid who was not supposed to KNOW ANYTHING (his words).

    As anybody knows, the bible can be quoted/argued on just about any point 180° if both parties are knowledgeable.

    Since the pastor was contradicting something he had tried to teach us the previous week, and being a typical 13 year old, I was not going to let him off the hook with a dismissive, “Sit down, and shut up if you know what’s good for you!”.

    The upshot was the threat of excommunication. At that, knowing the seriousness of what he had threatened, I jumped up out of my seat to tell him that he was out of line, and could not excommunicate me just for arguing with him. At this point he became TOTALLY out of control, barely able to speak. Further threats were made, including that I was excommunicated.

    I had had enough, gave him the one-finger salute, a verbal FU (knew better, but was so angry that I did it anyway), and left.

    Went home, got my bat, ball, and glove, and went to find a game of baseball. Returned home late that afternoon, to find my mother sobbing, my father pissed, and the pastor looking pleased with himself. I was prepared for a beating, and to be grounded for the balance of the summer.

    My father asked me if I had said what I had said, and I said yes. He asked me to explain myself, and the pastor started butting in. My dad told the pastor to be quiet, that he had had his say for close to an hour, and he wanted to hear my side of the story. I proceeded to explain what had happened. When I got to the part about being excommunicated, he snapped his head around to look at the pastor, and asked him in an incredulous tone of voice if he had actually told me that in front of the rest of the kids in the class.

    When the pastor admitted that he had done so, my dad got up out of his chair, and demanded that he retract what he had said. After some sputtering, the pastor did so, I apologized for my gesture, and language. After the pastor left, I was awarded my punishment (not as bad as I thought it was going to be), sans the beating (that I was SURE I deserved, and was going to recieve).

    I completed the remaining Saturday Confirmation Classes, and received confirmation.

    To this day that series of events/actions put a bad taste in my mouth for organized religion. I have seldom set foot in a church/synagogue since then. Weddings, and very few funerals.

    Which has not prevented me from investigating religions. I have studied Christianity, Judiasm, Islam, Bhuddism, Hinduism, Mormonism, and several offshoots of Christianity.

    So, this has been a long, round-a-bout way of saying that this deeply spiritual American, HOPES-HOPES-HOPES, and PRAYS-PRAYS-PRAYS-PRAYS, to the God that I believe watches over all human beings, regardless of their religious convictions; that a Second American Civil War does not come to be.

    Because if it does, I believe the fight will last for at least a decade, and transform the planet forever. Only GOD knows which way it will go, and if the American Constitution will still exist when it is over.

    Peace, love, and happiness to all.

    1. A good friend of mine once said that “there is a difference between Christianity and Churchianity”. He was right. I’ve encountered the wrath of “religious” people before. Reading this blog reveals that we are not the only two people that have encountered this. As things continue to fall apart we can expect more of this type of treatment.

      I very strongly prefer the KJV Bible, although the Geneva would be interesting to have.

      Keep the Faith,

    2. Watching the video clips of the BLM “protesters” demanding that white people give their homes back to the blacks they stole them from:

      and the video clip of the boarded up streets in Manhattan:

      MSM is mostly silent on this. And crazy liberals of all colors who support this movement as well as the ANTIFA sorts are playing with fire and are seriously ignorant. When they come for THEIR homes and businesses and demand they give them up do they really think they’re going to listen to them protesting that they’re one of the “good guys”, “see my BLM sign I have in my front yard”?

      I grew up in NYC(left at 19). Many parts of it were scary dangerous then. Many neighborhoods that were black or Hispanic had previously been white and often Jewish but the residents had been chased out. My grandparents were scared out of their apartment by certain people roaming the hallways banging on doors and demanding that they leave. They saw the writing on the wall and did so. So it blows my mind how the BLM sorts have such selective memories. They willingly “forget” all of the places that used to be heavily white such as Detroit, Baltimore, the Roxbury and Dorchester sections of Boston, many cities in NJ, etc and are now black majority. Yet they demand that whites vacate any neighborhood that they say used to be black and now isn’t. And the sheeple support them instead of recognizing that this is a dangerous group. None of this bodes well for this country. I just figure that somehow this fits in with what some people want to happen and that’s why it’s being allowed to continue.

    1. Hi. I have a Husqvarna that works well, but it’s electric. If I get a second one, I would prefer an old treddel machine. I don’t really know enough about those to make a recommendation, except to say that Singer had to get its reputation somewhere. There’s no substitute for developing some hand sewing skills though.

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