(Continued from Part 1. This concludes the article.)
Food for Health
I am also working on growing and preserving my own food. This is another family project that my wife and children enjoy participating in. We do not have a large plot of land, so we need to make the best use of what we do have. We really challenge ourselves to see if we can get more than the preceding year. We have had some successes and some setbacks. We learn more from the setbacks than we do from the successes. When the divine hand of providence reaches down and makes our garden thrive, we feel very blessed. It is humbling to see how the natural world of creation is not subject to the whims and fancies of man.
The biggest issue that we have in growing our own food is that we are city bound and unable to have an overly large garden plot. An organization in our city rents out garden plots at a very economical price on donated land and that does help increase our yields. The skills that we are acquiring in gardening under less than ideal conditions will help us when we are ultimately able to relocate. A number of circumstances will not allow us to relocate to a more desirable area for at least two years. It is our hope that when these circumstances are resolved that we will be able to relocate to an area that is conducive to the patriot mindset and self-sufficiency.
Another skill I am acquiring, is that of natural medicine and healing. My wife has had a huge impact on this area and could probably contribute volumes to this article. Our family library now consists of numerous works explaining how herbs and natural remedies will help the body. We also have like-minded friends that share many of their recipes.
Not only is herbal and natural medicine an important part of our prepping, but eating a better overall diet is contributing to our survivability. As I stated earlier, I previously took poor care of myself. I can do little to reverse the damage I did earlier in my life. But I am now focused on temple maintenance. By watching my diet and eating good healthy foods and avoiding the over-processed foods that contribute to many of our First World health and dietary issues I hope to at best maintain my health with the hopes of some improvement.
We eat very little white foods unless they occur that way naturally. Mostly we avoid the white sugars and flours that are so over-processed that they have little nutritional value remaining in them. We aim to eat locally grown foods that are naturally produced without GMOs, pesticides, and hormones.
TEOTWAWKI Planning Odd and Ends
Imagine what will be needed in a new economy after TEOTWAWKI. Cash will most likely be of little or no value. A barter economy will be in place. Precious metals and usable base metals will become the currency of the day. What skills and abilities do you have that will be of value?
Many local community and technical colleges offer adult or continuing education courses for the people of the community. Some of the offerings include metal and wood working, electronics, automotive repair, gardening and a host of other classes. These will help bolster our skill sets and provide us with valuable education that can be used in a barter economy. These classes are usually inexpensive and will offer students the opportunity to potentially meet like-minded people. Education is an intangible asset that cannot be taken away.
I have a basic knowledge of how vehicles work. To bolster my knowledge and to keep my skills sharp, I have sold my newer vehicle and have purchased an older vehicle that I am planning on using as my bugout vehicle. Currently, it is my classroom on vehicle maintenance. The vehicle I have purchased was mass manufactured and very popular so there are ample used vehicles around for parts as well as many after-market parts.
Learning how to reload ammunition is a three-fold cord. It will provide you with ammunition, the skill to make more ammunition, and a highly-prized barter item. Start with a simple single stage press and a set of dies. When you go to the range pick up every piece of brass that others have left behind. My son sorts our brass by caliber and we then clean it and remove the primers. We then can sell or trade the clean, un-primed brass from the calibers we don’t use and get the necessary components for the calibers that we do use. As you increase your reloading skills, you will also increase the resources on your bench and that will pay off immensely when needed in the future.
There are myriad possibilities out there for what can be done to enhance one’s abilities and value in an TEOTWAWKI situation. Let your imagination run wild and see what you can find. It will be worth it when the times come to put those skills to the test.
So, as you can see, the skills that I am adding to my toolbox coincide with my abilities. If it appears that I am not trying to stretch my limitations then that is an incorrect assumption. At my age and present health condition it is highly improbable that I am going to become an MMA fighter or a marathon runner. So I need to set realistic goals and expectations and slowly stretch my boundaries.
I probably can’t provide foot patrols or security around a perimeter like I once could. That doesn’t mean I have to be useless. From my hunting and gardening practice, I can provide food. With Krav Maga training, I won’t be completely defenseless if we are breached. From my first aid training I can help the sick or wounded. My amateur radio experience will allow me to provide and help with the communications that will aid security. Eating a healthy diet and the knowledge of how diet can impact health will help my family and I maintain health during less than ideal conditions. I want to be an asset and not a liability and even more so in a TEOTWAWKI situation.
Most importantly, is engaging family and a select group of like-mined friends. If we try to go it alone, we will most likely not face very good odds. There is usually safety in numbers. We all see what the mob mentality brings out in people. They have little fear in robbing, burning, and looting in a riot situation. Imagine trying to face that alone. Additionally, different people will bring different perspectives and different skills to the group.
Just like a good leader has a council of people around him or her a prepper needs to have a similar group of people situated around him or her. Look at the Presidents of the United States for example: As intelligent as they may be, they will not be educated in every area. Our current President, Donald J. Trump has experience in business and may not lean as heavily on economic advisors, but he still has them for the different perspective they offer. He will lean more heavily on those advisors that have education in areas that he may be weak in. President Dwight D. Eisenhower was a five-star general that became president. He would most likely not need much council in the area of national security but again would still have advisors in that area. President Eisenhower would probably rely more on the council of economic advisors than would President Trump. We need to recognize our strengths and supplement our weaknesses.
It is not weakness to ask for or incorporate help into your plan. It is actually a sign of intelligence and strength. The expression “Jack or all trades, master of none” is quite appropriate in survival. As you can see, I am attempting to acquire knowledge in many areas. My God-given abilities make me stronger in some areas over others. Knowing where I am lacking is the wisdom, I need to fully fill my toolbox. Selectively allowing people into my planning will help me to overcome my shortfalls and cover gaps in the plan. I am not saying that my plan is foolproof or 100% complete. To the contrary, it is a living breathing plan (unlike our Constitution) that is being honed and crafted daily.
I am blessed with a job that provides a decent income and allows me to purchase many of these preps while my wife can stay at home and educate our children as we believe the Bible commands. Many of these items have not been purchased all at once, but they have been worked into the budget. Take it slow and make a budget. Buy one prep or add one skill at a time. Get involved with a group and you will be amazed at how much help is out there. One today is one more than you had yesterday.
I am not adding these skills to make myself invincible as that part of my life is far gone. What I am doing is hopefully adding to my survivability in the event of TEOTWAWKI. And isn’t that what preparedness is all about?