5 Common and Costly Mistakes Preppers Make
How You Can Avoid the 5 Common and Costly Mistakes
The preparedness community is made up of extreme optimists that want to live a self-sufficient life now and in the uncertain future. There is a desire to have provisions to live even when confronted with some bleak scenarios. There are five common and costly mistakes preppers make that are frequently made in an effort to gather needed supplies. I personally learned the hard way in the beginning of my preparedness journey. Heck, for that matter, learning and mistakes are always happening. The comfort I take in my blunders are the lessons learned in times before our lives depend on having the knowledge. Learn and make your mistakes now and move on.
The ability to provide the “staff of life”, bread, you must have the ability to grow and harvest your grains or purchase the grains. Many people will go out and buy flour in large 25 or 50 pound bags. It is economical but only if you use it up within a relatively short period of time. You could repackage the flour into smaller containers and use oxygen absorbers, but this too, will only keep the flour fresh for a limited time, usually about a year under ideal storage conditions. If you want to have grain for extended periods of time you should consider buying grains (called wheat berries) that are factory vacuum sealed in number 10 cans. These cans of grain will have an extended shelf life of up to 15 years in proper storage conditions. You will need to purchase a grain mill to grind the wheat berries into flour. For preparedness safety, you will be more secure if you have more than one way to grind your wheat. You can get an awesome Whisper Grain Mill and a manual grain mill. I have both of these and want to add an additional mill to my kitchen tools for safety sake. Whatever you can purchase now will provide some security since there is a possibility that commonly attainable items may not be available in the future.
Using a Vacuum Food Product
I must say, I love my FoodSaver and have used it a great deal. It is wonderful for packaging meat and other products you want to freeze. It makes your food last longer in the freezer and helps keep foods from getting freezer burned as quickly as they would without it. I have used it to seal mason jars with success and with some failures. From my experience, I have found that after a bit of time, which seems to vary, the seal on the jar can become unsealed. This is a major problem and can cost you a great deal of your food, your effort in putting the food up for storage and money. You can use the machine for short periods of time but don’t bank on it for long term.
I was also having trouble sealing the small lids on mason jars. I called the company and they said they are working on the problem and recommended that I put a lid on the normal way and an additional lid on top of it facing the opposite direction before sealing. It seems this will allow the machine to form a seal. Don’t do what I did and think the jar accessory is the problem and buy another attachment. I now have two of the small jar lid accessories and still have to use the trick the company told me about.
Learn the proper way to save seeds. I tried using seeds I had opened from the prior year and found many of them did not germinate. Use fresh seeds each year and also have a safety net of properly stored seeds for your “seed vault”. I have purchased seeds to have on hand for a worse-case scenario. I must say, gardening has been a challenge in Central Florida. Having grown up in Vermont, we had MANY gardens and never had any real problems growing an abundance of food in a very short season of the North Country. Since moving to Florida, we have seen more than our share of garden failures. I still do not feel confident in growing a garden that will sustain our family. It is for this reason that I also store freeze dried foods that are factory vacuum sealed to have as back-up and general food supplies. If you want to learn how to save seeds from year to year, there are groups you can join to help you learn the right way to accomplish this. This is an area I feel very inadequate in and will be learning more. If any of you are garden gurus please leave some pointers for other readers, it will be most appreciated.
Get Your Health in Check
If things do get to a point where the health system we all depend on becomes limited, many people will be in a very bad situation. Make sure you and your family have your immunizations and various health care needs addressed now. I understand some people are very wary of immunizations and I admit I am very skeptical of much the governmental agencies profess in this regard.
I would like to share a personal experience with you in hopes it may keep some people from going through a lifetime of health concerns. I am a polio survivor. I was in the last group of people to contract polio during the same year the Salk vaccine came out. I was only 18-months-old, so I don’t have any memory of not having the effects polio caused. I think this is a good thing because I didn’t know a different way of living. The post effects of the virus caused my left leg to atrophy significantly. Yes, I look different and walk with a limp but I do everything other people do. I met a great guy and we have three incredible adult children and five grandchildren I adore. It hasn’t slowed me down, in fact I think it made me more determined and resilient. It isn’t a condition I would want others to have to go through. With the wonders of preventative medicines, no one should have to go through such an experience. This is but one example of how medicine has made life better for so many people.
There are some who believe vaccinations cause autism. I have wondered if this was true myself. I feel the possibilities of becoming autistic from being vaccinated is slim if anything. You can check out an article, “No MMR Autism Link…” by Autism Speaks Organization. Please do your research. I am not gung ho on shots, in fact, I have a history of passing out with them. I have taken the shot to prevent pneumonia, but, I personally don’t get the yearly flu vaccine. Make your own choices keeping in mind your decisions can affect other people. If you contract a preventable disease because you chose not to get immunized, you can no longer contribute to your family’s well-being and you may jeopardize the life of others with your decision.
Another thing you may want to take care of is any dental work you need done. A toothache is nothing to laugh off. You will be in severe pain and you could poison your system. If you haven’t been taking care of your oral health, this is the time to do it.
Don’t forget to take your animals into consideration, too. Make sure their immunizations are up-to-date. If things were to get bad, there could be animals and people who could come into contact with rabid animals. This would be a death sentence. Get your animals their preventative care and stock up on flea products. Fleas can also carry disease. Fleas can spread cat-scratch fever, typhus, and plague. Prevention is the answer to keeping your family and pets healthy.
Think of this time of relative stability to be your training period where you can recover from mistakes. A period of time to get your supplies, and family’s health in order to better face potential problems. If our country faces the unthinkable, you will have a better chance of surviving a bit easier. By preparing, you will have more optimism and a sense of calm knowing your family will be provided for. You can have confidence when avoiding mistakes preppers make.
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