Sunday, February 24, 2013

Getting Started, "I Can't Afford To Prepare", Gardens and Inflation

TEOTWAWKI Blog had an interesting discussion. "One to-do that I walked away with was the need to put together a real budget sensitive kit, and from off-the-shelf stuff. I did the $40 a week series, but even that's out of reach for a lot of people. A $150 or so total investment is probably a good starting point." Continue reading here

I commented there but felt like elaborating on the topic. It doesn't matter what you WANT to do it matters what you put meaningful effort towards doing. I would not mind being able to speak Chinese or squat 500 pounds but am not really doing anything to make that happen. Anybody can say they want to be prepared but if they aren't willing to do something about it that is all talk which counts for jack and shit. The point is that wanting to be prepared (or anything else) simply doesn't matter, what we DO matters. I'm not saying somebody not actively pursuing preparedness is bad or whatever, there are lots of good folks who it's just not their thing.

We make choices in life. Having expensive hobbies is a choice, eating out regularly is a choice, going out on the town all the time is a choice. Like I talked about previously well prepared individuals tend to have some things in common.

For what it is worth I find deciding on a goal and then figuring out how to make it work is the way to go. It's like the pay yourself first financial concept. The other option is to wait till the end of the month and inevitably there will be nothing left.

It's the same with space (historically another hot topic). If you look for easy to use storage space that is not currently filled with anything or be obtrusive on living spaces there isn't any in most homes, especially the small ones where space is already an issue. On the other hand if you come at it that your home is going to fit 30 buckets of stored food, 2 contico bins of gear, a backpack and a small gun cabinet then somehow you will figure out a way to make that work.

Of course people should be realistic. A one income family of 6 pulling down 20k a year can't financially do what a high powered couple bringing in big money can. 5 years of food for 6 people and 100k in ammo is not going to fit into a 30 foot RV. Everyone's situation, finances, schedule and goals are different. If $40 (or less) a pay period is what you can put into preps then do it. Have a plan, shop sales and make that money go as far as it can. If you are really short on space then do the best you can and once that is done try to work alternate locations or caches.

One mistake I think many people starting out in survivalism make is getting frustrated at what they perceive to be a lack of timely progress. This is short sighted at best. Focusing on progress is far more meaningful. Like Jim Wendler said "If you bench press 225 and want to do 275 first you need to do 230". Slow progress adds up over time if you are consistent.

At the risk of slipping into tomorrows post I put some more energy into the garden today. Right now we have a few plants. I am toying with ordering some nonhybrid heirloom type seeds and trying to sprout then grow them. There is still time to do so, though not enough to dilly dally for very long before doing so. It would be nice to grow some strawberries and a few other things. Our situation lends itself to container gardening for a variety of reasons. Any advice (where you buy small quantities of seeds from, sprouting, container gardening, harvesting seeds, etc all) would be greatly appreciated.

Has anybody else noticed that prices of stuff just keep climbing? I swear gas is up 10 or 20 cents this week. We aren't eating better but the cost keeps rising. Am I alone on this?


Anonymous said...

Nope, you sure aren't alone. I do the grocery shopping most weeks for the missus and myself, and yes, prices most definitely are rising. I just haf this discussion with the wife last week. I think it's definitely time to start purchasing some silver- inflation seems to be waking up and making its presence known.

Anonymous said...

Its ALL rising, the prices are crazy expensive. And spring break (traditional gas price spike lasting to June) is still some weeks away.

I'm putting away some canned meats. Two freezers (standard kitchen and undercounter) are packed tight with past hunting season (two deer and a pig). More veggies are needed - planning on buying more multi-vitamins too.

Max said...

I had a nice comment and blogger ate it.

1. Start
2. Don't worry about what other people have
3. Don't worry if it's slow going unless you have a lot of money
4. Do it on your budget and timetable.
5. Keep going

It's cheaper to eat crappier food, our healthy grocery cart 1/2 full was $175 and the lady in front of us with an overloaded cart of crap food was $175.
Sad but true, they are trying to kill us with food.

Anonymous said...

I do a five dollar garden evry year in containers. I spend no more than that and get all the greens I can eat, enough peppers to sastisfy me, enough tomatoes to piss me off, and not a strawberry yet--they take more careful watering than my level of discipline provides. I get lots of seeds for next to nothing at Family Dollar and Dollar General along with the small box of Miracle Grow for less than a Lincoln. Not sure of their hybridity (not a word but I like it). Not going to help me survive exactly other that giving me (and my kids who were highly skeptical at first) the confidence that if you put seeds in the groung and give them a moderate amount of care, food will appear. If it's more of an experiment for you, I highly reccomend this method. Takes very little effort (my plants get a lot of water whenever I freakin' feel like it) and even less money. I did splurge $1.29 last year on some watercress at MegaloMart, and it literally grows like a weed (takes genuine effort to kill); had it not be confined to a container, it might have taken over the yard. So if you're really unsure about gardening in containers, start there. And as bonus, if the balloon goes up before you really learn to garden, your otherwise empty plate will be well-garnished.

riverrider said...

you are not alone. yesterday i stocked up on pasta sauce on sale. when i went to stack it in the cubbard the new cans were shorter, minus 2 oz. experts on the doc "end of the road:how they crashed the dollar" said inflation by the old method would be 10%, which would bankrupt the ss, pension funds,and .gov payees due to the cost-of-living adjustment. so they keep changing the formula and tell us theres no inflation. when i retired 3 years ago, i could make it fine on just my pension. now after 3 years of 10% plus inflation, i have to take my broken body out and get a job somehow. good luck with that. thanks america, way to take care of those that serve.

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