Ready or Not #197: New Year to Get Prepared

When I went to my local on-line newspaper the other morning, this was the first article I saw:

“Two demonstrators died in spreading unrest over rising food prices in this North African nation, the interior minister said Saturday.”  (The Daily Herald)

This was followed by a picture from the AP and a caption that read:

“Youths face police forces in Constantine, eastern Algeria, Saturday Jan. 8, 2011. Police faced off against rioting youths, Muslim prayer leaders called for calm and authorities canceled football matches Friday as Algeria tried to quell unrest over rising food prices. Youths in the North African nation have been rioting for days following sudden price hikes for staples including sugar, flour and oil.”  (The Daily Herald)

What a way to start a new year.

It Can Happen Here
Don’t think that can happen here?  Wrong!   When people don’t have access to food or are denied other items they deem necessary (either because there isn’t any, they can’t afford it, or because of martial law) there will be dire problems. People will be angry and frustrated – and that is a bad combination.   Your sweet little neighborhood residents might do things that even surprise themselves (#67-Fire and Destruction).

Have you made your New Year’s resolutions yet?  Did you keep your resolutions for last year?  Not just the “lose weight” one, but the other really important ones like get my water stored, get out of debt, and build my families food storage.

Like you, I make resolutions and I don’t keep some of them. (That would be the “lose weight” goal.) But, I always make at least one really big one that come _ _ ll or high water, I WILL KEEP!  Last year it was to get enough water stored to take care of my family in an emergency.  I kept that goal.  Now on to this new year.

A Fresh Start to Being Prepared
This year I know what my goal is going to be. It is to make sure that my family will have the necessary power needed during an emergency.  So, what is your big, gotta keep goal this year?  If you don’t have water (#2-Storing Water & #177 Super Tanker Water Storage), please consider that to be an important one.  (Two gallons, per person, for a two-week period – minimum!)

Another goal that you might consider is to make sure that you have enough fuel on hand to keep yourself safe and warm and to provide enough light during an extended emergency.  Check out the articles on wood (#17), coal (#18), gas (#19) and propane storage (#20) to help you get started.

I Need to Talk to Someone – Anyone!
As we all know, knowledge and communications are key during an emergency – on a family, community or national level.  I can pretty much guarantee that your family-plan cell phones won’t be working when you need them to be during an emergency.  Consider getting your CERT and First-aid training (#27, #28, #47 & #167), making a family plan and getting your HAM radio license (#76-Family Plan).  These would be really good family friendly activities and all of them are relatively inexpensive (or free in some cases) and the new found knowledge that your family has will be indispensable.

I Don’t Want to be Cold or Hungry – Do You?
Right now I have plenty to eat and enough sturdy clothes and blankets to stay warm and protected from the elements.  I have good solid snow boots in my house and a pair in my car; I have a change of clothes in my car and a backpack full of useful items needed in an emergency (#7-72hr Kit (Contents) & #45-Back to School).  We have blankets, jackets, hats and coats that would help us to stay warm with a very small heat source.  Do you?  For a year?  For even three months?

Have you been working on your food storage?  I don’t care what your food budget is; you can build your food storage – even if it is slowly.  You just need the tools (our Food Storage Worksheets) so that you know what you need and how much and then the  resolve and determination.  Even if you are on food stamps or WIC, you can still build a very effective food storage (Food Stamp recipients have a bigger food budget than I do!).  If you really want to take care of your family and build an effective food storage, you will be able to overcome any obstacles that you try to impose on yourself (#8-Storage Space & #9-Food Storage Attitudes).  Just keep a good attitude and it will happen.

Get Prepared and Don’t be a Victim
If you don’t plan ahead and get prepared, you are still making plans – plans to become a victim.  In an emergency, you will not be taken care of – you won’t, really.  The government has made it quite clear that they want you to get you and your families prepared because they don’t have the resources to take care of you – AND THEY AREN’T SUPPOSED TO (#47-Ready Campaign & #48-Ready.gov).  It is your responsibility, nobody else’s.  If you play the victim role before something happens by not preparing, then when you really are a victim. I am so sorry for you because I only prepared for my family – and not yours too.

This year just do it, and start to get prepared – no excuses.

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