Preps versus Debts

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Bills

Bills bills bills

A friend, let’s call her Cathy, called me about buying items for her stockpile while she was shopping at Costco.  We went over beans, rice, sugar, canned foods, toilet paper and others good bulk items.  Cathy told me she’d call me back after she got through the check out line.  Not even 30 seconds later, she called back telling me how mortified she was that her credit card was declined and she had no other way to pay.  I tried to make her feel better but I don’t think it worked.  We hung up soon after, as she left her cart of bulk items behind, muttering something about getting a drink on the way home.  I felt bad for her – it is awful to get told that in front of a whole line of people.

I had no idea she was having issues with debt; it is not the sort of thing that is usually discussed with friends or family.   I think many people are in denial about being debt, just as they are in denial about the need to prepare.

It is unfortunate my friend was not able to get the bulk items just as she was getting started but I think she can start by prepping in small steps.  When someone finally wakes up and feels the need to prepare, it is often accompanied by panic.  Thoughts about not having enough money to get all the gear you think you need fill your mind, and these thoughts might make you even more paralyzed.

How do you find money to prepare, while you are also trying to dig yourself out of debt?

Make a spending plan. 

On one column, list your income.  On the opposite column, list your expenses including rent or mortgage, utilities, food, gasoline then list your debts, and possibly savings.  Your income less expenses should have a small amount left, and you can allocate that to prepping.  I believe you can prep even if you start with $5 a week, as long as you do it consistently.

Stop charging.

I have seen advice or comments in other sites saying just run up the credit cards and buy all the emergency supplies even if it’s on credit.  I’d stay away from doing making additional charges, because that just sinks you further and further into the pit of debt.  In a year or two, if nothing happens, you will still be in debt and you will just blame yourself even more.

It is hard to put the cards away, but that is the only thing that works.  If you don’t carry it in your wallet, and it’s out of reach you are less likely to use it.  Switch to using cash only.

Try to get more money coming in.

There are lots of ways to make some money on the side.  Consider moonlighting, or making money from hobbies.  For more ideas, see Coming Up with Cash for Preps

While technically not getting more money coming in, using coupons increases your stockpile at a lower cost.  See Extreme Couponing to Boost your Supplies.

Learn Self-Sufficiency Skills

Part of prepping is learning to be more self-sufficient and many of these skills can be learned for free.  Start now by visiting my section on Self Sufficiency  

I encourage you to try out even just one project a month, and you will end up saving some money.

What about Emergency Cash?

I would say as long as you are current on your bills, and are able to set aside a small amount for water, food and emergency supplies, then you should do so.  Having a small amount set aside for emergencies will help you avoid relying on credit cards then next time you need to replace a tire, pay for an emergency room visit or other unexpected expense.

Get help and inspiration.

If you are trying to recover from credit card debt, these sites offer excellent advise on  giving debt free living advice:

http://www.daveramsey.com/home/

Debt-Proof Living

Both sites have a members area, however, the free side is excellent and gives enough information to get started.   I am not affiliated with any of these sites, I just know countless people have benefited from following these steps.

I also like the Surviving and Thriving blog by Donna Freedman, which features a bit of everything but also has some great advice about living well on a small budget.

If you are new to this site, please check out the “Getting Started” tab  as well as Saving Money

Being prepared for emergencies and having a small stockpile of your necessities will actually save you money in the long run.

 

 For low-cost ways to prep:

 

For easy ways to become more prepared, read my book:

Debt-Proof Living

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Review of Own the Night: a Tactical Training DVD for Preppers, Plus Giveaway

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Own-The-Night-DVD-Image

I was a bit hesitant before agreeing to review a tactical training DVD called “Own the Night”  After all, being an apartment dwelling mom, I was not sure there would be a need for “owning the night”  But after considering what can happen in the event of a large scale collapse, when no one is safe, especially at night, I thought it would be worthwhile to to find out about it.

The DVD features tactical training exercises to help you become more proficient in combat at night.  This would of course only apply in the event of a total collapse scenario if there were no rule of law, and not for “normal” times.  Some of the lessons that stand out:

–what to do when you’re ambushed

–learning to shoot from awkward positions

–learning to shoot from cover

–what to do if you are running out of ammunition while fighting

Although this topic may not appeal to everyone, part of prepping is the possibility of having to defend yourself with weapons, and confrontations are likely happen at night.  If you are an advanced prepper, someone who has a military background or who trains constantly, you likely will not learn anything new.   However, if you consider yourself a beginner to average, then there are some very helpful tips that can be learned from this training.

To get the most out of it, and be able to practice the training recommended, you would need to know someone whom you can train with at night, and some space, such as vacant land where you can practice.

Mr Apt Prepper watched the DVD with me and he picked up a thing or two.   You would likely learn some good pointers as well.

The Giveaway:

A copy of Own the Night DVD is reserved for the winner.

For a chance to win, just leave a comment below:

How do you feel about defense as part of their overall preparedness plan?

OR

What type of defense are you considering?

 

The winner* will be chosen at random on Saturday,  Sept, 21 at 8 pm Central.

*Winner will be notified via email.  Winner must reply to email notification within 48 hours or another winner will be drawn.

 
Get the real deal. Whether bugging out or sheltering in place, you can never have enough clean water for survival: For your water purifier needs, please visit:

 For beginning preppers

Good ideas for building a food storage plan can be found here:

DebtProof Living

 

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Monday Musings 9/16/2013

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Welcome to another Monday Musings where we share blog updates and interesting links.

First, the updates.

The SurvivAmino winner has been drawn.  The winner of the drawing is “Bill” who has been contacted via email.  He posted the following comment regarding protein foods for storage:

We have dried beans; some canned beans and canned meats. Yes, I like Spam, especially the Hot-N- Spicy kind. We will also use eggs and do some fishing and hunting too. The supplement sounds interesting.

Another giveaway is coming up  We have another giveaway planned for tomorrow – it’s going to be just as unique as this last one so please come and check back!

Sponsor news…  I appreciate you for visiting our sponsors, they help us keep Apartment Prepper continue to be a free site.

The Berkey Guy is having some great sales:

National Preparedness Month Sale:

Crisis Preparedness Handbook
13.99 with free Shipping

    

 

Valid on Berkey Light, British Berkefeld Systems & Sport Berkey (not Shown)

Use Code at Checkout:

15OFF

Camping Survival now carries additional Fish Antibiotics.  See

Camping Survival

 

Survivalcavefood.com has some SBack to school food specials!

And don’t forget the September Mountain House sales!   Two of our sponsors – Ready Made Resources and Camping Survival are still having great sales, so if you are in the market for Mountain House, please consider visiting them through our site.

Now for the links…

Sounds tough but doable     Interesting experiment, and some great tips but hopefully never have to experience “for real”  See Living Without Running Water: A Practical Guide

A fun and productive hobby  Apt Prepper husband wants to try this.  I wouldn’t mind either, but I am don’t trust my unsteady hand…  See   Drinking Glasses from Wine Bottles

Great essay about avoiding attention  Camouflage Is Not Always The Best Camouflage

Even super thinkers feel riots will start quickly if food supply is disrupted   See

Killer robots and crippling cyber attacks: How the world is going to end – according to super brains such as Stephen Hawking

Safety and security of our children is always on our minds  Here is a heartfelt article that gives concrete advice

Security Advice to My Daughter: Essential Pillars of Preparedness Series

 

That’s it for now.  Stay safe and have a great week everyone!

 

 

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Bargain E-book for a Long Lasting Emergency Light

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2000HrFlashlightI purchased a copy of The Amazing 2000-Hour Flashlight by Ron Brown.  It’s a manual that shows you how to add a 30-cent resistor to a $5 flashlight, to create a light that will run for 2000 hours on the same battery.   The e-book contains step by step instructions and includes illustrations.  You can’t buy such a light from a store; you have to make it yourself.

I first heard about the author, Ron Brown through his DVD, Lanterns, Lamps and Candles.  After learning from his DVD, I went on to experiment with making emergency lights from common household items and they were all super cheap and easy.  The e-book’s Foreword was written by Gaye Levy, who runs one of my favorite blogs, Backdoor Survival.  With two trusted writers, I figured this book is sure to be a treasure trove of information.

Being the inquiring mind, I asked Ron Brown a question that I am sure comes up:

APT PREPPER:  The book description indicates “using illumination for 2000 hours”  – how many lumens would you estimate the light to be?

RON BROWN:  You’ve asked an excellent question but not a simple one to answer. So I’m going to quote from the book itself (sans illustrations).

“When I first added a 150-ohm resistor to a flashlight, I was concerned about how much light it would produce. So I compared my newly modified light to a variety of other flashlights I already owned.

“In preparing a sequel to Lanterns, Lamps & Candles that would address electric emergency lighting (a future project, as it turns out), I accumulated a fair assortment of flashlights, old and new, borrowed and blue.

“Comparing them, I found that the Eveready 5109LS with a 150-ohm resistor was right down the middle, neither the brightest nor the dimmest of what I had on hand. So, even with the resistor in place, it’s fair to say that the light output is “good.” Not great, I’ll be the first to admit, but good.

“Now, what can I use as a cutoff point, a minimum, a threshold, to say that it’s NOT good anymore? Here’s where it gets sticky.

“Flashlights are commonly rated in “lumens” and most lights provide that info on the label. The Eveready 5109LS does not. Online, however, various sellers (e.g. Best Buy, Walmart) state that the 5109LS outputs 25 lumens.

“What the 5109LS wrapper does display is a little clock icon that says ‘FL 1 Standard 65h’ (meaning 65 hours). ‘FL 1′ stands for ANSI/NEMA FL 1 – Flashlight Basic Performance Standard. In that standard, run time is defined as ‘the continuous time lapsed from the initial light output to when the light is at 10% of the initial output.’

“So the FL 1 standard uses circular reasoning. A flashlight is measured in terms of itself. If the 5109LS starts out at 25 lumens, when it reaches 2.5 lumens its run time is deemed to have expired. (According to Eveready, that’s 65 hours.)

“I would argue that we need a fixed standard of comparison, not a moving target. When I’m trying to compare light output and battery life using a 56-ohm resistor versus a 150-ohm resistor versus no resistor at all, a run-time benchmark defined as ’10% of wherever you started’ is useless.

“So I picked a light that supplies, in my opinion, a minimum threshold of useful light. It’s a keychain light, the Maglite Solitaire. It’s been around since 1988 and kicks out a blazing 2 lumens. Count ’em. Two.

“Although the two-lumen Solitaire will not inspire Tarzan-yells and chest beating, it does produce sufficient light to be useful. You’ll be able to find your way to the privy at midnight. It’s a practical standard by which to compare various flashlight designs. And it’s widely available; Walmart carries it.

“I bought a new Solitaire. The Solitaire’s blister-pack contained a Duracell alkaline battery in addition to the flashlight. I swapped out the Duracell for a new Energizer Ultimate Lithium battery. I removed the lithium battery from the Solitaire between tests.

“I used a pass/fail test. As long as the flashlight being tested was visibly brighter than the brand new Solitaire, I judged the test-light as ‘passing.’ I would waggle my finger at the test-light and say, ‘Keep on trucking.’

“When the light being tested had dimmed to the point of being MERELY EQUAL to the brand new Solitaire, I judged the test-light to have ‘failed.’ I would then jerk my thumb and yell at the test-light, ‘You’re outta here.’

“That was my standard. That’s where the 2000 hours came from. 

“You might well ask, of course, ‘How did you determine visibly brighter?’

“In answer, the simplest test I found was to stand in a dark room with the light being tested in one hand and the Solitaire (the control or standard) in the other and shine the lights in quick succession, one after the other, at an analog wall clock with a sweep second hand, twenty feet away. If you try it, you’ll discover there really isn’t much question about which one best illuminates the clock face.”

This response shows how thoroughly this book is written.

I have read through it and found that the materials are very easy to find, and the instructions are easy for me to figure out.  I am going out to get the parts and assemble a couple of these 2000 hour lights for myself.  Having an emergency light that’ll last for 2000 hours is certainly a money-saver for apartment dwellers and homeowners alike.   This information is a bargain at  99 cents and I highly recommend this e-book.

2000HrFlashlight

The Prepper’s Pantry

The Prepper’s Pantry

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Why Storing Peanut Butter is a Must for Preppers

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Peanut ButterIn the previous article, the giveaway question is asking readers what are their favorite protein sources for food storage.  I can tell you that one of my favorites is peanut butter.

Unless someone has a peanut allergy in the family, peanut butter makes a great storage food:

–inexpensive

–filling – “sticks to your ribs”

–protein rich and calorie dense

–can be used in a variety of ways such as as sandwiches, sauces, cookies, shakes, spread on crackers or eaten right out of the jar.

–long shelf life.

Besides the obvious food uses, there are several other uses for peanut butter:

  • Remove chewing gum out of hair.  It’ll also remove gum stuck under your shoe
  • The high oil content makes it a decent lubricant to get rid of squeaks
  • Attract birds- coat a pinecone with peanut butter and feed the birds
  • Easily give your dog medicine by coating the pill with a light coat of peanut butter
  • Some people swear eating peanut butter helps alleviate diarrhea.
  • Fix scratched CDs and DVDs by smearing the scratch with smooth (not chunky!) peanut butter and polishing it off.
  • Again for smooth peanut butter, I’ve heard it can be used in place of shaving cream, but I don’t know if I’d want to smell it all day long! :)
  • Use peanut butter instead of cheese as mouse trap bait.
  • Remove a sticky label
  • Clean off glue from your hands
  • The high oil content would also make it a good firestarter.

Even with limited space, an item as tasty AND useful as peanut butter deserves a spot in your storage shelf.

 If you have any other unconventional uses for peanut butter, please share in the comments!

ReadyMade Resources is a trusted source for your preparedness supplies-Don’t miss the Mountain House sale!

 

 

 

 

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Review: SurvivAmino – Protein Replacement for Emergencies, and Giveaway

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I was offered the opportunity to review SurvivAmino, a survival protein supplement.   While I had been considering adding protein powder to my food storage, I had not considered protein in pill form.

The way I did the test was to stop eating protein and instead take SurvivAmino as a replacement.  The directions say five pills per meal, eventually working up to 15 pills a day.  I don’t normally eat a lot of protein myself, just a small serving twice a day, so I took only two or three pills for two meals for five days.  I ate the rest of my normal meals – starches, vegetables and fruit as normal.

There is really no objective measurement of the result, however I can say that I felt fine and no different on the days that I took the protein pills.  I did not feel extra hungry at all, but being a person who likes to eat, I did feel tempted to ditch the pills and eat the burger instead!  However, we are testing for survival here, where protein sources are presumably limited.

In this regard, having a bottle or two of SurvivAmino in your bug out bag is a good idea It is lightweight and is a total replacement for protein based on the eight essential amino acids.  In a survival situation, meat would be hard to find and even harder to store without refrigeration.  For non emergencies use, it can be used for strength training, as a protein supplement to add muscle, improve blood cell count, and improve endurance.

The manufacturer, Vitality Sciences, backs their products with a 100% with a 3 month, no questions asked money back guarantee.

The regular price is $45 for one bottle, containing 100 tablets.

A special discount for Apartment Prepper readers:  Use the coupon code aptprepper (lower case) to get the price down to $39.99 a bottle.   Note:  Apartment Prepper has no business affiliation with SurvivAmino.

Now for the giveaway:

One bottle of SurvivAmino is reserved for the winner.

For a chance to win, just leave a comment below:

– What protein sources do you have for emergencies?

The winner* will be chosen at random on Saturday,  Sept, 14 at 8 pm Central.

*Winner will be notified via email.  Winner must reply to email notification within 48 hours or another winner will be drawn.

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Monday Musings: 9/9/2013

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Welcome to another Monday Musings, where we share blog updates and interesting links.

First the blog updates…

299 Days:  The Visitors giveaway winner   We had the random drawing for 299 Days:  The Visitors  and reader David won the copy.  We have another giveaway planned for tomorrow – this one’s going to be unique – so please come back and check in.

What I did to prep this past week  Prices have not been as good as they are this month for Mountain House, so I ordered my favorite entree, Mountain House Noodles and Chicken. 

Two of our sponsors – Ready Made Resources and Camping Survival are both having great sales, so if you are in the market for Mountain House, please consider visiting them through our site.

Cleaning up the blog   I’ve been going through past articles, deleting old links and doing a general cleanup to avoid getting penalized by search engines.  I have to admit, this is the tedious part of maintaining a blog.  I’d much rather be writing and experimenting on stuff, but it still needs to be done.

On the plus side, I have some fun projects lined up that I cannot wait to report on, including the one I just tried below.

This really works!   You know I had to try this as soon as I read about it from Backdoor Survival – sharpening a razor blade.  I have a couple of used disposable razors in the bathroom drawer that I never discarded, hoping to find a way to sharpen them.  I followed the instructions in How to Sharpen Razor Blades for the Long Term  I also poured a bit of rubbing alcohol on the blade to speed up drying (I think I found this in the Sunday Survival Buzz)

I tested the razor that I tried it on and found it to be very sharp.  As long as the razor blades never rust, they can keep getting sharpened and will last for a long time.  This trick can really save money!

Now for the links…

Where does your chicken come from? I don’t like the idea of chicken all the way from China reaching my table, I don’t know about you, but we should at least find out where our chicken comes from.  See Chinese Chicken Processors Are Cleared to Ship to U.S.

Don’t trust the jerky treats either  This happened a little while back, but even pet treats are suspect.

Deaths of 500 dogs blamed on jerky treats, FDA says

I can remember the tainted cat and dog food recall from a few years ago, when I actually had bought some of that melamine tainted cat food.  Fortunately, I discovered the tainted food before I gave it to the cats, because one of the cat food cans exploded in the trunk of my car, leaving a huge nasty smelling mess that reeked for days.

Antibiotics for emergencies.   Even the hardiest of survivalists can have a bacterial infection that can be life-threatening without antibiotics.  Here’s a good article from Urban Survival Site that has good information on good ones to have.  See

 The 9 Best Survival Antibiotics

Denial can be Dangerous   A lot of people are still in denial about the need to prepare.  But even experienced outdoors men or women can make bad choices while in denial.  See DENY DENIAL:  Your most primitive survival skill can also be fatal

Don’t throw out your junk candles  Check out this project first – Recycle those Junky Candles into a Survival Firestarter from Survival Common Sense We all have candles or candle piece we no longer want.  This is another neat money saving idea that I can’t wait to try out.

That’s all for now, it’s back to blog clean-up for me.

Take care and have a great week everyone!

 

 

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Budgeting for Emergency Supplies – the 60% Solution

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This is a reprint of an article I wrote a few years ago and it originally appeared on Modern Survival Online.

One of the issues to consider when preparing for a disaster is where to focus your spending:

  • Do you focus most of your money on buying supplies to prepare your house or apartment (Shelter in place)?

OR

  • Do you spend money on gear so you can leave your area when disaster hits (Bugging Out)?

We’ve struggled with this question ourselves.  Naturally you want to cover both scenarios all at once, but resources are limited so there has to be some direction to your spending.

Your choices will depend on your own particular situation, and on what you feel is the most likely emergency you will be facing.

Here are some considerations:

  • Do you live in or close to a major city?   Think about what will is likely to happen in your surrounding area if a disaster were to hit today.
  • Can you defend your home or neighborhood if necessary?  If you live in a close- knit neighborhood near people you can rely on, then you can potentially band together and protect your neighborhood and homes.  This would allow you to be able to stay in your home a lot longer.
  • Do you have a place to go in the event of a major disaster such as a cabin retreat or relatives you can stay with?  You do not need a cabin or retreat out in the woods; you just need to have a plan.  Identify friends and relatives you can potentially stay with should your area become uninhabitable.  Or plan out a route to a hotel in another town.  In either case you will need cash for gas and a hotel stay.
  • Would your family be able to leave on foot if needed?  There is always a chance the roads become impassable and you have to walk out of your area.  Would your family be able to leave?  If you really cannot leave, then you will most likely need to shelter in place.

In our case, we live in an apartment, in the middle of a large city.  We know that the city can potentially degrade into an unruly, crime infested area when a major large-scale disaster occurs, as in Hurricane Katrina.  We would want to leave before a powerful hurricane directly hits our city.

On the other hand, it is not always necessary to leave when an emergency occurs.  In 1992, we experienced the Los Angeles Riots.  For six days, thousands of people rioted, looted and burned parts of the city.   We got sent home early from work and drove for hours looking for a route around the rioting areas.  But once we got home, we stayed home until things calmed down.  Because the emergency occurred in another part of the city, and our utilities and infrastructure was not affected, it was a “shelter in place” type of situation.

At this point in time, we consider the highest risk to be economic in nature:  with high unemployment, rising fuel and food prices, and the country’s debt piling up.  So we concentrate 60% of our emergency preparation fund toward staying in our home.  We are purchasing food in bulk, storing water, having back up sanitation methods, communications, fuel, first aid and other supplies that may be too expensive or hard to come by, should there be a financial emergency.  Our supplies are also a hedge against inflation, since we are buying at today’s prices and using them sometime in the future if prices go up.

We also know that there could be a chance we may have to leave our home, such as a Category 4-5 hurricane, fire, civil unrest, etc.  The other 40% of our budget for supplies is going toward gear that will be needed to leave the area, such as hiking shoes, backpacks, portable food, a portable water purification system, First Aid kit, fire starter, tent etc.  We are getting our gear as inexpensively as possible, by shopping sales and buying quality used items where available.

One thing to remember is, the two options do not have to be mutually exclusive:  many items such as “Meals Ready to Eat”, portable water purifier, first aid kit and other light weight supplies can be brought along with you should you have to leave.  Just make sure you have all your supplies in one area that is easily accessible so you can grab them quickly.

You may feel differently and decide on a whole different set of threats to prepare for.   I would not recommend “putting all your eggs in one basket.”  Regardless of what area you focus on, the items that you buy now will be good insurance against whatever comes your way:  economic collapse, natural disasters or man made threats.

Get the real deal. Whether bugging out or sheltering in place, you can never have enough clean water for survival: For your water purifier needs, please visit:

 For beginning preppers

Good ideas for building a food storage plan can be found here:

DebtProof Living

 

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Assemble your Pet Emergency Kit

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Dog in a harness - Copy

Many families have a family pet or two, and they will also need supplies in the event of an emergency.   The day before a hurricane or flood would not be a good time to run out of pet food or other supplies.  You don’t have to get everything together all at once, but today is a good time to get started.

The kit does not need to be in a fancy container – a 5-gallon bucket or a plastic crate would do.

What to Include:

Pet food – I keep an extra bag of pet food that is unopened for emergencies.  Most dry pet foods will keep for a year, but will start to crumble after a longer period.   I just keep rotating the bags.

Extra water – Don’t forget pets when calculating your household’s water needs.

Extra collar, harness and leash in case you have to leave in a hurry

Pet medicines and supplements – If your dog or cat is on Heartgard or some other vet prescribed medicines, keep a couple of extra doses for emergencies.  Similarly, if they are on supplements such as glucosamine, set aside a few spare tablets or even a bottle for the emergency kit.

Flea prevention treatments

Pet carrier – in case you have to evacuate

Backup food and water dish

Pet blanket or toy

A few other tips:

  • Make plans ahead of time of where you will head out to, in the event of an evacuation.  Many shelters do not allow pets, and only a few rare ones do.  The time to find this out is before anything happens, while you have the opportunity to make backup plans.

Pets naturally provide comfort, and we all need all the help we can get in times of high stress such as a disaster.  Take of their needs now, and you’ll have one less thing to worry about.

 

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Glen Tate, Author of 299 Days – Advice for Preppers and a Giveaway

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299 Days Volume 5 - Copy

299 Days: The Visitors (Volume 5)

I was excited to have the opportunity to interview Glen Tate, author of the 299 Days series of books.  Thus far I have read four of the books, soon to read Volume Five.  First, a quick background from the author’s bio:

Glen Tate has led an amazing life – and one that took a surprising turn. He grew up poor in the rural logging town of Forks, Washington. He worked hard to become a successful professional with a job in the political arena. Thinking he’d finally made it and everything was great, he was stunned to see how corrupt government is. From his observations at his job, he realized that America is collapsing and bad things are coming. Very soon. He began to prepare for him and his family to make it through the civil unrest of the coming collapse. That meant he had to return to his rural roots – quite a shock to his family and friends. Even more amazing was that he wrote down what he foresees happening during the collapse and it became a ten-book novel series published by Prepper Press.

On with the interview…

1.  The first book, 299 Days delves into the main character’s need to prepare, but his wife is not convinced.   Many preppers can relate to this predicament – what advice can you give them?

GT:  When dealing with non supportive family members, you have to stay calm and not be perceived as over-reacting.  The first thing you need to do is accept their position:  they feel your concerns are crazy.  Get them interested by appealing to what’s important to them.  For example, if they are concerned about the kids, then keeping the kids safe in a disaster would appeal to them.  On the other hand, if guns are a “turn-off” to them, downplay or stay away from that topic.  You know your relative or friend very well, so you already know their likes and dislikes.  Use whatever works in your favor to get them on your side.

Editor’s note:  This is excellent advice and I am going to try it.  I personally know people in my family who consider preparedness “just something that I do,”  One of the relatives is motivated by financial gains, so perhaps stressing how stockpiling can save money, while others are protective of their families.  Family safety in an emergency would be of interest to those relatives.

2.  Most of our readers live in big cities, and it is a big concern that cities will become unsafe in a disaster.  What would you say is the biggest obstacle to getting a bug-out location and what can you do about it?

GT:  The biggest obstacle to finding a bug-out location is money.  Not everyone can afford to buy land in a rural area.  While things are normal, write down a list of potential places, including names and addresses, that you can run to in the event of a large scale emergency.  Don’t store it electronically in the event there is no power.  This list can include friends and family whom you know enough to have contact information.  They do not need to be immediate family, but can be 2nd or 3rd tier contacts.  Try contacting them ahead of time and get a feel for how they would react.  If anything happens, such as an economic collapse, during the early stages, try and be the first one to ask.  Have something to contribute – bring your supplies with you.  Throw everything you can take in a U-haul trailer and get out.

3.  Grant Matson, the main character, has a group that he trains with – what do you think about defensive training for the average person who does not have the same contacts?

GT:  Spend as much on training as you spend on guns and ammunition.  Training is often overlooked but it is essential to build confidence and familiarity with your weapon.  Even if you just try something once, it takes the mystery out of it and you will not hesitate to act when the time comes.  You can practice at the range or even shoot at cans in a gravel pit.  You will carry yourself with confidence which also makes a difference in how people perceive you.

4.  In the book, Grant’s daughter learns how to shoot – what is a good age for children to start learning about the proper use of firearms?

GT:  It really depends on the child’s maturity.  Some seven to eight year old children have a readiness to learn while some may not be ready.

5.  Although ammunition is starting to become available again, they are still expensive.  What advice can you give?

- Stock up when you can.  Always get a few boxes as they become available.

- Consider team reloading.  Find a team you can do hand-loading with and share the cost.

-  Use 22s at the range.  If you can, get a 2nd gun that functions the same, mechanically, as your favorite gun.  This way you are training with less expensive ammunition.

6.  If you can only choose one rifle, what would it be?

GT:  I am an AK fan, but since the question is only of one type, I would choose the AR-15, because it is easy to operate ergonomically.

7.  We try to stay away from politics at Apartment Prepper, but what would you say is the biggest risk for our country at this point?

GT:  The problem is non-partisan, the country is borrowing too much, spending too much, and printing money too much.  Both parties are not acting fiscally responsible and the highest risk is economic in nature.

Politicians do try to do what the people want, and many or their constituents feel entitled and believe there is such a thing as a “free lunch”  The problem is, this willingness to take stuff is not sustainable.  An economic crash will cause problems to the political system, which in turn will cause social break downs.

The good news is we can all prepare while we still can and I feel I am doing what I am meant to do:  get people aware of the need to prepare and get the message out.

We had a great interview with Glen Tate.  Although the 299 Days series of books is pure fiction, Glen is an active prepper and has experienced or witnessed many of the situations described.  Thank you Glen for taking the time to speak with Apartment Prepper.

Now for the giveaway:

You can win a copy of 299 Days:  The Visitors

For a chance to win, just leave a comment below:

– What are your biggest concerns that you are preparing for?

OR

– What have you done lately to prepare?

The winner* will be chosen at random on Saturday,  Sept, 7 at 8 pm Central.

*Winner will be notified via email.  Winner must reply to email notification within 48 hours or another winner will be drawn.

 

 

The Prepper’s Pantry

The Prepper’s Pantry

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