I couldn’t sleep last night, overwhelmed by the task I set for myself. How does a person become self-sufficient? Where do I even begin? How many canned goods would I need? How often do containers of water need to be replaced? What if I never get the hang of knitting socks? This project seems so impossibly vast. What are the priorities?
To get my head sorted out, and to put the project into perspective, I decided to write it all down. Everyone is different…. I thrive on lists and organization. To me there is something so satisfying about writing down a task… and then checking it off when it’s done. (I’ve even been known to write things down that I’ve already done, just so I can cross them off the list… shhh).
Of course, a new project deserves a new spiral notebook (purple, my favorite color), and a cup of tea (PG tips, strong and sweet), and a pen (nothing special about the pen, expect that it works.) The notebook has five sections with pockets. My plan is to assign each section to a different part of the journey….
- Emergency Preparedness- what do I need to get through the magical 72 hours?…. What should I keep in the car? What should I keep in the house?
- Shelter in Place- A disaster or SHTF event keeps us locked in our homes… What do I need? Is a plastic tarp and duct tape vital?
- Long Term Evacuation- Time to bug out… Where do we go? What do we need?
- Prepper- Can I take care of myself and family for a year or more… without government help?
- Off the Grid Self-Sufficient- Land, a home, a farm, a life away from everything… a safe place.
Now, certainly, these categories overlap…. but I think that by organizing myself this way, I can get it all in order. Each section will have lists of necessary foodstuffs, tools, and other supplies. All I need goes into the notebook where I can easily find it again. AND I get to feel the satisfaction of drawing a giant checkmarks next to completed tasks. (oh man… I sound like the card-catalog loving geek that I am. )
One final list; and perhaps this deserves its own notebook… the list of things I don’t want to forget. The good, the bad, the goofy…. a memory list. Now, this isn’t an original idea. In “The Stand” by Stephen King, a woman keeps a list of things that may be forgotten, things that she plans to tell her unborn child. (I remember she liked Sara Lee cakes). I want to remember as much as I can, everything from my favorite movies, to my grandmothers address, to great vacation trips, to that fabulous chocolate cake that they used to sell in the freezer section at Trader Joes. (My friends and I would go out of our way to buy one, then we’d set a frozen cake on the dashboard of the car so that it would thaw enough to devour by the time we got home…. rich, chocolatey…. and a road trip! the perfect mini-adventure.)
Time to get started.