I have told people I am a second generation prepper. This is not necessarily true as I recently discovered. My great grandmother raised my grandfather in the aftermath of the Great Depression. Since then, my great grandmother and my grandfather (and his wife) have grown, preserved and put up their own food. My mum picked up the habit without realizing it. If soup was on sale, she would pick up cases of it, “just in case”. Same with toilet paper, soda, anything that we used on a regular basis. Boxes of cookies lined her bedroom wall but we weren’t allowed to touch them. They were for “one day we might not be able to afford cookies.” To this day, now that us kids have left the nest, she will still pick up cases of stuff when its on sale, “just in case”.
So is it any surprise then that I started saving food? Now that I have my own children, I make sure I have lots of our favorite foods on hand “just in case”. What does ‘just in case’ mean? For us it could mean a severe winter storm (such as we had last year, where the city was shut down for three days with no grocery stores open), a tornado, job loss or illness, economic collapse or zombie apocalypse for all I know. Basically, I don’t know what just in case happens to be, but my food storage has definitely come in handy for us from time to time. Whether it’s my child being picky and only wanting Kraft dinner or the weather keeping us in, or even just being too busy working seven days a week to make it to the grocery store, we have used my storage countless times, each time replacing what we have used.
I don’t just store food, although that is certainly one of our main concerns. We also have water to cook, drink and clean with. I know there’s been times when we’ve run out of toilet paper in the washroom and another person has had to run to the storage to grab another package (thankfully we always have a decent size stock of this). We have shampoo, tooth paste and feminine products (I will be blogging at a later date about feminine products). I think the most important thing we have “prepped” is our skills.
I am of native heritage (about 1/3) and although my native family lives on the other side of the country, I have been learning as many of the skills as I can. These have been passed on to me through letters, emails and in person when I visit my family. I am very thankful for some of these skills. Some of them are very mundane. I know how to make dream catchers and drums. But to learn those skills, I’ve had to learn to work with deer hides. So that knowledge is easily transferred over to clothing and tools made from the same materials. My great grandmother’s mother was something of a medicine woman, passing down herbal knowledge that no one had any interest in until me so the family is happy to indulge my curiosity in that field. Making a bow, arrows and shooting them, not as mundane, but definitely beneficial. (ninanâskomâwak niwâhkômâkanak)
By trade I have been a chef and although I gave up that trade I still retain the knowledge. So I’d like to think that any food I might catch, I can make edible, not to mention the stuff found in most people’s storage or pantries. Butchering is simple for me as I’ve had to do it hundreds of times on a variety of animals. I love to garden and come from families of farmers. I have always been interested in homesteading and it is my goal to eventually get off the grid and grow the majority of our own foods. I can the excess produce from our garden, dehydrate and freeze anything we won’t eat right away. I also like to go camping and practice my foraging skills.
Since leaving the cooking profession, I have returned to school, graduated and become a health care professional. I have needed to keep my first aid and CPR certificates up to date and to a higher level than most laypersons. I also owned a small business where I made soaps, candles and other things of that ilk.
My best friend is a war veteran. He has gifted me with several manuals on survival and field medicine. I always have access to his wealth of mechanical and tactical knowledge. We have lengthy conversations and sometimes debates on survival skills and it is always enlightening.
I knit, crochet and sew as hobbies and for various charity projects. I also participate in various “prepper” communities online, sharing knowledge with other like minded individuals.
Asides from those “qualifications”, I read voraciously just about anything I can get my hands on but like to focus on survival manuals, back to basics living, gardening, foraging, emergency preparedness and homesteading. I also have had subscriptions to various related magazines.
On my blog, you can expect to see articles on the above subjects, as well as book and movie reviews, guest spots occasionally and general views on certain world events.
Thanks for dropping by and I hope you learn something!