Are You Getting the Most Out of Your Prepping Supplies?

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supplies for preppersYou’ve heard it a million times, “Why spend money on prepping stuff you’ll never use?” Poor excuse! I use LOTS of the supplies initially purchased, “Just in case we’re out of power”, or “Just in case there’s a huge emergency.”

Here’s how I have put my supplies for preppers to use in my everyday life

Preps to help with food storage and off-grid cooking

Root Cellar

Ours happens to be a large closet in the basement with two concrete walls where it stays around 60˚ all year. It’s perfect for food storage, especially seed potatoes. You can build a root cellar following many of the different plans online.

Sun Oven

I love baking but hate a sweltering kitchen in the middle of summer. Thank you, Sun Oven, for no-sweat brownies in August!

Cast-iron cookware 

Originally, I replaced the nonstick variety of cookware because I wanted to be able to cook over an open fire or on the grill in a grid-down scenario. Clean-up is so easy with cast iron, and we get extra iron in our diet rather than flecks of nonstick “stuff.” I can’t imagine cooking with anything else!

Solar-Powered freezer

Confession: this actually belongs to our preparedness buddies until our budget allows us to build our own. BUT, their small upright freezer runs on solar panels. When the power goes down, their meat investment stays frozen.

Fermenting Practices

I’m not sure yet when I’ll be comfortable canning garden goodies over an open fire, so a couple of summers ago I tried fermenting cucumber dill pickles like grandma used to do. A couple of buckets, some vinegar and spice (plus a strong stomach for skimming smelly scum off the top), and you’re set to preserve without electricity. I used this recipe, but scan the net to see what spices make your mouth water.

Staying clean with supplies for preppers

Hand well pump

Whether it’s a Midwest ice storm, overloaded circuits in the summer, or a tornado that hits the wrong transformer, it’s nice to be able to still flush the toilet and wash our hands. And brush our teeth. We used EZ Water Well Hand Pumps and did the installation ourselves, but plenty of companies on the web will install for you.

Clothesline/Hand washer

Okay, I’ve only tried the hand powered washer on camping trips, but I use the clothesline all summer long to avoid heating up the house and to save on electricity bills. There’s nothing quite like the smell of sheets dried on the line!

Smart products for prepping and for every day

Fusion tape

I don’t sew very well, so while I’m learning, this heat-activated tape is a quick solution. I don’t think it’s durable enough to make entire garments, but it’s great for hemming, especially when I don’t want the hemline to show. FYI, it’s also great for repairing sleeping bags.

Solar charger and rechargeable batteries

Buy batteries once and use them forever. It has saved us money over time.

Solar string lights

I keep some string lights balled up in a mason jar on the windowsill. They put out quite a bit of light on the patio table without drawing lots of bugs, especially if I set the jar on top of a mirror. We’ve also strung them around the bedroom for a fun sleepover night-light.

Candles/Oil lamps

A little romance, a little ambiance? (More often, a little air refresher in the bathroom…)

Antique clocks

My husband has an artistic appreciation for these antique beauties, but I love them for another reason: they don’t require batteries or a hook-up to the cell tower. As long as they’re placed on a level surface, they keep excellent time.

Have you bought anything “just in case” that you find yourself using frequently?

4 thoughts on “Are You Getting the Most Out of Your Prepping Supplies?”

    1. The Survival Mom

      Home freeze dryers are several thousand dollars. It would take a very long time to break even vs. buying freeze dried food from companies like Thrive Life, Augason Farms, etc.

  1. But if you are on a restricted diet and can’t eat most of the foods available commercially it would be a great thing to have. BUT ONLY IF you could afford it. I don’t think it’s worth going into debt over.

  2. Cold-weather sleeping bags and canning jars. I don’t particularly like sleeping IN sleeping bags, but I’ve discovered that spreading one out as a base layer on the bed provides so much additional warmth that I can greatly reduce the number of blankets on top of me. As a middle-aged woman, one part of my body is cold while another is very hot, so the “pocket” at the bottom of our mummy-style bags is perfect for keeping my feet warm when I throw off the rest of the covers. Since we keep the house at 62 in the winter and sleep under a large window, staying warm at night used to be difficult.

    I buy canning jars (and spare lids and rings) whenever I can afford them, even though I gave up canning decades ago. They’ve become my household’s version of Tupperware. We use them for drinks on picnics, leftovers in the fridge, and storage of dry goods. I prep primarily for financial reasons, so whenever we buy nonperishable foods, we immediately fill a jar of that item and stash it in the cupboard. We don’t include the contents of the jars when we make shopping lists of what need; those items remain “forgotten” until we’re in dire straits. The jars will be available if and when I decide to start canning again, and in the meantime we have easily-stored containers for food. The FoodSaver jar attachment keeps the food fresh until we need it, and repackaging lets me buy foods in bulk that would otherwise lose flavor before we finish the original container. When you’re not actually canning, the lids can be used over and over.

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