I meet with two fellow homeschool mom's almost weekly to do science experiments with our boys, and to just have some time to chat. One of these mom's is from the local area and we get along well. We come from the same background. The other mom is not local. She is a woman takes her "status" very seriously. Other than us, I don't believe she socializes with many "townies"...preferring to socialize with people like herself, that are transplants. Disclosure: technically I am a transplant from CT, but I have been here since I was 7, so I am considered a native. Also our family fit right in when we moved here, being rednecks to begin with :).
Now this mom keeps wanting to talk about prepping. Every time we get together, she wants to know my thoughts on it, what I would do, etc. I am no expert by any stretch of the imagination, most of what I know about taking care of my family I learned from my parents, or have learned about online. And what works for one family, will not work for another.
One of her concerns that comes up constantly is the fact of how to make sure you are protected, and will the community pull together in a SHTF situation. I told her, in my personal opinion, that two things will happen in our small town:
-Any one who didn't grow up here, who is a transplant, will sit and take a "wait and see" attitude about what the town leaders will do. They won't have a clue how to care for themselves.
-Townies/locals will take care of their families first, and then get together with their close friends to help each other out. They don't wait for the town leaders to take action, and never have.
She admitted that she doesn't have any close friends/family locally. She hasn't made any attempt to befriend any townies/locals. This is going to be an issue for her, and I told her as much. She will be one of the ones waiting for the town leaders to guide her, because she is just not putting herself out there.
Now, I have to admit that it is mostly because of my father that I have the connections I do in town. My father was always one of those men who put himself out there. Not with the "uppity" of our town, but the regular folks like ourselves. If someone need a roof repaired, 4 or 5 of them would get together and get it done over a weekend. If someone needed help with most anything on their land, they got together and got it done. You scratch my back, I scratch yours situation. Back when we butchered our own animals, this is the way it was too. A group would show up at our house for a day, help my dad get a steer or a few pigs done. Then the following day, they all went to one of the other men's homes and did the same thing.
This mom has also brought up food storage. I may be alone in this at the moment, but for our current situation (knowing we are going to have to move in less than 6 months), I am not storing much at the moment. I have a month's worth of the basics. Once we get to a place where we know we won't be moving (praying for this), my thought is a year's worth of food. At one point I had our storage up to 6 months of food, and it was a blessing when I was in a very hard spot and had to live off that.
I think it is more important to store things like seeds long term. Can what you need for the year, much like the pioneers did. But to stock 10yrs of food seems foolish to me. What if you couldn't stay in your current location? If you had to leave your home, you couldn't take 10yrs of food with you unless you had a tractor trailer truck. I think being able to grow your own food, no matter where you end up, is far more important, thus seeds. They store well, take up little space, and can be taken with you. Now, if I found a great deal on something that I know we use daily (toilet paper for instance), I would most definitely stock up. I don't remember where I saw it, but someone online stored their toilet paper by flattening the rolls and putting it in totes. This is a great space saver, and allows you to store more.
Along the lines of protection, she laughed when I talked about a young person I saw on a clip of the Doomsday Preppers show, who said that if marauders came he would just share his food and befriend them. I talked about how foolish this is and she agreed. But less than a half hour later, was shocked when I told her that she and her husband should learn how to shoot.
In a SHTF situation, you have to have not only protection, but a way to hunt. I hate fish...I refuse to live on fish for my meat. I would rather have a 22 rifle or pistol, and be able to shoot some real meat. She seems to take this in, but is also reluctant to really take it to heart. You can give advice till you are blue in the face, but if someone isn't willing to really hear, or try new things, it is pointless.
My main advice to her: Learn to do things for yourself. Learn to shoot. Learn to cook without modern conveniences. Learn to do wash in a basic tub,and wring out by hand. Learn to build a shelter. Learn how to cut down and split wood by hand (gives you both heat and cooking, and a way to preserve hygiene).
She asked what today's teens would do...would they survive? Both the other mom (a local herself) and I piped up "Our kids will be fine". See, all of our kids know how to use a bow, a gun, fish, etc. They have learned these skills from us, their parents. We learned them from our parents. Yes there will be a learning curve on somethings that they don't have to do on a daily basis, things I did when I was their age, but they would learn, just like I did. This homeschool mom is super over protective with her 2 boys (10 and 8). They aren't allowed to do very many things that normal boys do, without her hovering over them, "don't get dirty" "don't hurt yourself", etc. That's what boys do, it's part of how they become men. Learning by trial and error.
All of this is a bit of a ramble, but I thought I would put it out there......How should you prep? Thoughts welcomed!