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"Self-reliance is the only road to true freedom, and

being one's own person is its ultimate reward” 

Patricia Sampson

Sensible Food Supply Preparation Part I

What would you do if the Grocery Store shelves were empty? How would you survive? Here are some basic food storage and supply ideas that you can start without turning into a full blown "survivalist". ...


I wanted to add that there are really, very few good videos on self-reliance.

I think people make it too hard. That is what I liked about this video,

even though it was a bit boring, is that he kept it simple. and it is true to just start!!

You do not have to go and buy expensive kits or big cans of food. he is exactly right to just start buying what you eat, what you like, and what you can. As you go along you can add stuff. We save water, too. And I add 6 drops of bleach to a gallon. I store water in old bleach bottles (for cleaning), pop and juice bottles, etc.

Milk bottles do not work. I have tried and they always leak. I will be adding more to this site about food storage, etc. See below for my experiment!?!

Moreover, business wise...are you prepared for a natural disaster? Do you have adequate cash in case the power is out for several days and you cannot process credit or debit cards? (Those at home...this happened during Hurricane Katrina and Rita. The power was off so everyone used cash to make purchases. Guess what! Most stores could not make change so sometimes you spent a twenty for a lesser item. Not good! Have a stash of ones, fives, and tens hidden away for such a time.)

Do you have enough water to at least flush toilets? A generator to keep the most necessary items running? Fuel stored to run the generator? (Most of the time, you will not be able to purchase fuel once the power goes). Make an Emergency Preparedness Plan. I will add more to my site later...

In Emerson’s Self Reliance; Emerson says that a person should always stay true to themselves, be independent, and rely on one’s own ideas rather than those set forth by society and those around them. Emerson believed that people could view and then be free to chose from the ideas and beliefs of those around him or her. Therefore, we should rely on our own thoughts and intuition as we learn-- to guide us through life rather than letting others dictate how we live. Here is part 2.

Sensible Food Supply Preparation Part 2

Are you prepared to provide for yourself and family? This is part two of a Sensible approach to supplying food for your family in a Crisis enviorment. Don't be caught with your pantry empty if a catas...

I will address the gardening, raising animals, and MRE's later. We do all and he gives some good advice!

A friend recently ask me how to get started and where and what to buy, this was my answer:

I buy most of my bulk items at Sam's or Costco's. They are cheaper than other places, and then I buy canned goods when they go on sale, usually at places like Sav-a-lot or Aldi's.

I buy Sanalac Powdered Milk (I think it tastes the best) In OKC Grider's was the cheapest. People buy (I think it is called Moo Milk) a product that they say tastes good. Well of course it tastes well, it has a huge amount of sugar in it.

Which would be okay for storage and as a supplement, but should not take the place of powdered milk and would not be suitable for baking.

I just bought 10 cans of powdered eggs. A church I was visiting in Dallas did a bulk order from Emergency Essentials so I was able to get a better price through them. (I really did not have the money at the time, but I did it anyway, and then paid my cell phone bill late...)

Mainly, I know prices and when I see a good price I buy all I can at that moment, even if it means skipping on the rest of my groceries that month.

For example, during the ice storm when eggs were not available, Walmart marked down the brownie mixes to 90 cents each. I bought 2 cases of brownie mix that night.I am not fancy about storing items.

Go find a donut shop that will sell you their used 5 gallon plastic containers. They get icing and other food in them. Then wash them out, leave them to bleach in the sun for a day or so, and use them to store stuff in.

There is one type of container that has a snap on lid that I really like and a couple of years ago I was at a garage sale and I bought 11 large plastic containers.They were maybe 40 gallons? The man said they had sucrose (a sugar) in them and that they were from a vitamin company. They had a great, easy to use lid and I put water in six of them and have other foods in the rest.

There is no reason to go and spent lots of money on fancy products.

Just buy and my motto.

Before we lived in a big house, I hid food under beds, in the linen closet, the bathrooms, under table cloths, in china cabinets (on the lower part), in cabinets, the garage, the attic, etc.

Maybe they weren't ideal, but hey, having food to eat is more important than waiting for the ideal conditions in which to store it.  

As a family or even as a business we should have sufficient food, clothing, and where possible, fuel for at least one year. I will add cash, too. When Hurricane Katrina hit Houston while we lived there, the electricity was down in some areas for almost 2 weeks.

ATMs, Debit, and Credit cards do not work. Many places will not take checks. Also, many stores could not make change so if you had a twenty you were in trouble. I would encourage individuals and families to have at least $200 in ones or fives. Businesses should have enough cash flow to manage at least 2 weeks. Generators with sufficient fuel to run them can keep your business open while others have to close.

There is no exact formula for what should be stored. Each family should concentrate on essential foods that sustain life, such as grains, legumes, cooking oil, powdered milk, salt, sugar or honey, and water.

Each business needs to determine what is essential for their survival in event of no electricity, rationing, etc. and concentrate on a plan for that.

Most families/organizations can achieve and maintain this basic level of preparedness. The decision to do more than this rests with the individual.

When you

are prepared you need

not fear.

THREE-MONTH SUPPLY This is where you start. Just begin with a small supply of food that is part of your normal, daily diet. To do this, just buy a few extra items each week to build a one-week supply of food.

In other words, if you usually buy 2-3 cans of corn each week, buy 5 instead. Then put 2 of the cans back in a closet that will become your storage. This way you gradually increase your supply until you have three months. Then you try to get four months. Then five, and so on, until you eventually have a year's supply.

LONGER-TERM SUPPLY For longer-term needs, build a supply of food that will last a long time and that you can use to stay alive, such as wheat, white rice, and beans. These items can last 30 years or more when properly packaged and stored in a cool, dry place.

I have wheat that is more than 30 years old. People move and instead of moving their supply, they tell me, "Oh, it is so old. I will just buy new stuff when we get there." I smile, and think, "How nice to have that kind of money."

I also hope that disaster doesn't hit them before they get their new supply.

We have been married 26 years. I have been trying since day one to get a year's supply. We have enough wheat, beans, powdered milk. But I still need more sugar, oil, rice, and misc.

Our "EXPERIMENT" of living on just our food storage taught me, I definitely need more yummy stuff. Living on just powdered milk, things made from wheat, or even Spanish rice and beans would get really monotonous.

I really learned that items like flavored oatmeal, jello, pudding, Ramon noodles, mac and cheese, etc. Things that store well--but that only need water are good to have. Extra items that are canned, but yummy, are even better. I have not bought that many dehydrated items as you need water to reconstitute them and water might be scarce. I also do not buy any pull tab cans as they do not last as long as regular cans.

I do not buy anything expensive except for things such as dehydrated eggs, and so forth. I do not buy fancy containers, dry pack items, etc. It is too hard and too expensive to do it that way.

For years I have bought 5 gallon plastic buckets used from restaurants or donut shops. They sell them cheap and you just wash them out and set them in the sun for a few days to make sure they are really dry and clean. Also, make sure they have a tight lid that is easy to snap on and off.

Then I simply put the sugar, rice, wheat...whatever I am looking for at the time and buy it from the cheapest source. I then go home and put it in the bucket, put the lid on, use a permanent marker to put the name and date, stick it in a closet, under a bed, in the back of a cabinet, etc.

As for sugar, it gets hard when stored for a long time. Lately, I have left it unopened in the bags it comes in and then I have put the bags in industrial, heavy duty, black trash bags. We then duct taped the bag closed after getting all the air out. We then put it in another bag and taped it closed again. So far this has worked great. The sugar is 3 years old and has not gotten hard at all.

All food storage sites tell you to rotate regularly to avoid spoilage. That would be great in an idea world, but it still hasn't happened in mine. I do date stuff, and when I clean the pantry, I do move the older stuff to the front, but that is the extent of my rotation.

Don't worry too much about it. If some thing has gone bad, it will smell. If in a can, it will swell or the lid will bulge. You simply throw it away. I made the Peanut Butter treats awhile back. I opened a jar of PB and not until it was cooking did it have a peculiar taste. I realized it must be rancid. I threw it away. Life goes on. Just use common sense.

When beans are on sale. I buy a case or two. When sugar is on sale, I buy as much as I can afford. I only buy when things are cheap. I do not go out each week and buy a bunch of stuff. Only fresh stuff. We live off what is in the pantry and then buy when prices are low.

DRINKING WATER When we were first married we lived in rural Kansas on 40 acres. We had a well, but it wasn't deep enough so I was always running out of water. I would walk down to the pond with two 5-gallon buckets and haul back dirty pond water just so I could flush the toilet. I learned very quickly just how precious water is and how much we take it for granted.

If you do not store anything else. STORE WATER. AND IT IS FREE!

There are many circumstances in which the water supply may be polluted or disrupted.

To store water, simply use sturdy, leak-proof, breakage-resistant containers. I use soda or juice plastic bottles that I have washed out. Milk jugs do not work as they leak later on. I add six drops of bleach to each gallon of water I store. Keep water containers away from heat sources and direct sunlight.

Anyone can store water. Just start saving bottles, fill them up with tap water, drop some bleach in. Stick them in a closet, under a cabinet, hide them anywhere. I have stored them in the garage. I figure even if they are compromised, they still can be used for bathing, flushing a toilet, etc.

FINANCIAL RESERVE Establish a financial reserve by saving a little money each week and gradually increasing it to a reasonable amount .

This is easier said than done. Every time I have some money saved...I end up using it. But it is true, that had I not had anything saved, we would have been even worse off.

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