Where to Begin?

When we first began to seriously consider becoming more self-sufficient, it became obvious that it was going to be a huge undertaking.  The process of going from a typical suburban family to a self-sustaining, well prepared family seemed very daunting to say the least.

First of all, let me say that neither my wife or myself are what you would call patient people.  We do like to get things done right now and do not do very good at waiting.  I for one have been very bad at working long term plans.  So this little personality quirk could have easily ended our homesteading before it began.  Once we came to terms with the fact that this was going to be a very lengthy process, we determined to break it down into small, more manageable chunks.

When it comes to disaster prepping, there are three critical necessities that have to come into play.  Food, water, and shelter are the three basic necessities needed to sustain life.  Without these three things, there is no chance of surviving and sustaining through any disaster.

So there you have it.  You just need a plan with an unlimited supply of water, food, and a concrete bunker.  No problem at all.  Just go online, point and click, it will all show up UPS tomorrow, right?  If only it were that simple.

We determined that our house would suffice for shelter for the time being.  While it does need some modifications, those can come later.  Leaving us to focus on food and water.  For our family, the amount of food and water needed is a rather large amount,

To make this huge change happen, we had to break it down into smaller, more do-able chunks.  The wife created a spread sheet (she likes spread sheets) to track supplies we need for two weeks and the amount we have on hand.  Supplies such as food, water, candles, medical supplies, batteries, etc.  We basically made an educated guess about what we would need to survive reasonable well for two weeks with no electricity in case of an emergency.

We realized rather quickly that the cost to fill up even this small two week supply list was out of our budget.  Our easy answer?  Every time my wife would go grocery shopping she would buy a few extra things to fill out the list.  So given enough time we will get our two week list filled.  Once there, we will expand the list to a month and so on.

The necessary storage space to keep the amount of supplies needed to survive for long periods of time is rather large.  This makes it necessary to develople a plan for replenishment of the staples of life, food and water.  Water is still in the planning stage, but food was a simple fix, start a garden.  Starting a garden would give us a way of replenishing our food supplies and help lower our food budget.  A win-win situation.

The only problem was that this was more of a long term plan.  It would take a few months at the least to see any produce from our garden, and most likely a couple of growing seasons to get all the kinks worked out.  So starting the garden became one the most important things on the list.  We can’t make it to a point where we can grow enough food to provide for our family without getting it started.

We worked out a list of what we would need for a short term supply of two weeks and began filling it.  This would make us much more comfortable in any short term emergency, and give us something to build on.  Also, with our lack of patience, this gave us a goal we could achieve in a reasonable amount of time.  At the same time, we started our garden which will, hopefully, lead us to being much more self-sufficient.