sanitation

Last-Chance Apocalypse Shopping: Sally Beauty Supply

So, the apocalypse has happened, and it’s as bad as you feared. Crazy, wild-eyed people are running everywhere trying to grab anything and everything they can find to survive. They hit the grocery stores, drug stores, there’s no bottled water to be found in a 10-mile radius — but they don’t notice the little Sally Beauty Supply tucked away in an obscure strip mall. Hmm….. One would think that a store like Sally Beauty has absolutely nothing worthwhile for a …

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survive boil notice

How to survive a boil notice

A friend in Puerto Rico, Jennifer, tells me that her town has been on a boil notice for 5 1/2 MONTHS following Hurricanes Irma and Maria. Yep, you read that right. Five and a half months. That’s almost 170 days without clean running water. She could probably teach a college course on how to survive a boil notice! Now, just think what that means to a household like yours: The water that comes out of your tap, if it does, …

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cloth diapers

Down and Dirty With Cloth Diapers

In discussions of infant-centered emergency preparedness, the topic of cloth diapers inevitably gets brought up. “They’re good for 72 hour kits because you can reuse them,” is what I hear most often. “So good for when the SHTF,” is another one. There’s just one problem – I’ve noticed that the people gushing about the emergency preparedness applications of cloth diapers don’t actually use them, themselves. This creates the false impression that one could simply go out, buy some diapers to …

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primitive camping

Learn Primitive Camping Skills

I know what you’re thinking. “There’s no way I’m going to camp out in the wilderness in a tent!” “I’m too old to pee in the woods. I need a comfy and sanitary bathroom!” “Primitive camping is living out of our RV.” Well, those are valid points and I understand the need for creature comforts and toilet seats! However,  hear me out. Learning and practicing camping skills is an important part of being prepared. It’s doesn’t have to cost a …

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If You Just Moved Here: Hurricane Preparation

A few years ago I read about a woman who moved from the Southwest to New York City, and a hurricane hit two days later. She had no idea what to do. Why would she? She was used to droughts and brush fires, not preparing for a hurricane with its devastating winds and massive levels of rainfall. If you are new to hurricane country, and you are if you live within 100 miles or so of the Atlantic and Gulf …

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California drought survival tips

How the California Drought Has Tightened Up my Prepping

In all my years of preparing to work in Emergency Management, it never occurred to me that one of my biggest personal challenges would be a California drought. I was in Sacramento for the Yuba County floods of 1997, when flood waters caused 80,000 people to evacuate. In 2010, I was working in Orange County when the floods came, warranting a Presidential Disaster Declaration. Drought was something that happened overseas somewhere. We usually had much more water than we knew …

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off grid Personal Hygiene

Off-Grid Living: Take Care of Personal Hygiene 

The vast majority of people want to be clean and hygienic. Daily showers or baths (sometimes more than one!), multiple hand washings, and brushing teeth a couple times per day is the norm. If the grid goes down, we will still want to be clean, but it may get a little more difficult to do so. Here are a few things to remember about off-grid personal hygiene. Proper Hand Washing Many people wash their hands ineffectively. It is critical in …

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5 Tips for Correctly Using Hand Sanitizer (From a Nurse Who Knows)

1.  Use a large amount. More is better when using hand sanitizer. 2.  Slather the sanitizer between fingers, on front and back of hands, up to your wrists. 3.  Rub the sanitizer vigorously into your hands. 4.  Rub sanitizer under your fingernails and beneath your rings. 5.  Continue rubbing in the sanitizer until it dries. Do not wave your hands in the air to dry them. Anywhere you see a bottle of sanitizer, take advantage of it. ATM touchpads have …

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Survival Sanitation: Poop Party Chit-Chat, an Essential Family Conversation

Pooping…there’s nothing we like better as a society than sharing our defecation experiences. OK, you got me. This is not a subject for “proper” conversation. While we all have to do the “Number 2” to survive, it remains a very private experience. Couples that don’t think twice about urinating in front of each other draw the line here. Under normal circumstances, the details of elimination are pretty straightforward. Wipe, flush, and you’re done. But in a significant disaster, our options …

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