Survival Buzz: Coming to Terms With Your Prepping Priorities

Gaye LevyGaye Levy | Jul 3, 2019

A number of years back, I opened a discussion of preparing for probable events and setting aside the extreme for a later time.  It all started with a conversation in my household, and whether we needed to take our prepping to the next level. The specific context was freeze drying our own food but it could have just as easily been medical supplies, firearms, and communications gear.

This got me thinking about prepping in general and the various stumbling blocks that many face along the way.  These stumbling blocks may include expense.  Let’s face it, money for food, supplies and gear is an ongoing struggle for almost everyone.  Then there is time.  Learning skills, organizing preps, forming community groups and, for lack of a better word, organizing and inventorying what we have takes a tremendous amount of time, to the exclusion of more pleasant and enjoyable pastimes.

The pressure to get it all and to do it all is great.

Coming to Terms With Your Prepping Priorities | Backdoor Survival

Prepping Priorities

For some, planning for family safety and security during rough times or a disaster is foremost.  And for that, you will not get an argument from me.  Earthquakes, hurricanes, tornados, floods, fires and storms are all things we can relate to.  But what about preparing for a doomsday scenario such as a pandemic, terrorist attack in our own backyard, nuclear holocaust, or a massive world-changing EMP, or global economic collapse?

I will be the first to raise my hand and say that of these examples, the latter doomsday scenarios are what I fear the most.  But are these the most probable?  Taking just one, once a global economic collapse begins, the nations of the world will crumble like a set of dominoes and a major, global depression will occur.  The will be no money, no industry, no jobs and no rule of law.  There will be chaos of a grand scale and those of us in the Western world will need to learn to fend for ourselves as did the pioneers of years gone by.  That is my opinion, anyway.

But I digress and moving out of context. The point I am attempting to convey is that we each need to come up with our own set of probable scenarios and prep for them over and beyond  the extreme, more apocalyptic scenarios.

Prepping Is Not An All or Nothing Thing

I once asked readers to comment on whether they planned to bug in or bug out if a disaster or crisis were to occur near their home.  The overwhelming answer was “bug in”.  The reasons were many: health concerns, proximity to family members and access to prepping supplies were just a few.

Let me add another.  Not everyone can afford to own and stock a secondary bug out location.  Yet there are certain survival and prepping websites that will deride their readers for not making the sacrifice to set up an alternate location.  What kind of BS is that?  In a similar manner, certain sites will claim that without 300 pounds of wheat or 10,000 rounds of ammo, you will not survive.

It is not that those are bad things, but simply that everyone has different needs.

In spite of the description of preppers portrayed by Nat Geo’s Doomsday Preppers and other reality shows, being prepared is not an all or nothing thing.  You do not need to be extreme, you do not need to run around in camouflage outfits and you do not need to look like a Rambo or Rambette.

And most of all, if your prepping is imperfect, it is still better than 90% of the population. I say it is time to get over extreme prepping and come to terms with your prepping priorities.  That is what I am doing and you should, too.

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Register Now for a Free Webinar on Home Canning the SAFE Way

I have written about the fear of canning in the past, and now know that my kitchen will not blow up from using a pressure canner.  Still, I have some personal uncertainties about the canning process.  It is for that reason I have hooked up with my almost neighbor, Melissa K. Norris, to present an online webinar on home canning the SAFE way.

Why this and why now? Truth be told, there are some outdated methods still is use and still being pitched both online and in eBooks.  Why take a chance?

Appropriately titled “How to Can Safely at Home with Confidence“, during this online session you will learn which methods are outdated and just plain dangerous.  At the same time, you will learn about methods that are safe plus some best practices for building up food storage with real food you “put up” yourself.

Spots are limited and registration is now open!  Note that this is a free event.

By the way, both Shelly and I have already attended one of Melissa’s webinars.  I promise you, this is a fantastic chance to learn from one of the nicest and most sincere persons you will meet online. Be sure to save the date, August 9th, at 6pm Pacific.

The Final Word

There are days that I think I should rename Backdoor Survival “Ordinary Prepping”.  I say that because that is what we do here.  We promote common sense and thoughtful preps that can seamlessly blend into our day to day lives.  We may keep some of what we do private, but for the most part we share and help others become self-reliant and self-sufficient.

Don’t you agree?

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!

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You can also vote for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!

Spotlight:  Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving

Many consider this Ball Canning Guide to be their canning bible.  I have the eBook version but really need to get the print version as well.

I frequently emphasis the importance of “Comfort” when it comes to survival.  Whereas being truly comfortable during and following a disruptive event is an oxymoron, here are items that I feel will contribute to our comfort, for better or for worse.  For more ideas, visit 16 Items To Help You Hunker Down in Comfort.

Let’s start with something we can use to brew coffee and move on from there.

Farberware Classic Stainless Steel Yosemite 8-Cup Coffee Percolator: Here is a link to my own percolator. It makes great coffee.  I also own this manual coffee grinder and starting using it a couple of weeks ago when my electric grinder went T.U.:

Hario Ceramic Coffee Mill.  Note that whole beans store well when sealed in a Mason Jar (see How to Use a FoodSaver for Vacuum Canning).

Making biscuits in a cast iron pan - Backdoor Survival

Lodge Logic Cast Iron Pre-Seasoned Drop Biscuit Pan: Biscuits with jam are one of my favorite comfort foods.  This is the pan I purchased for biscuit making and to me, it was worth the cost.

Dorcy LED Wireless Motion Sensor Flood Lite The Sunday Survival Buzz Volume 22: Having adequate light when the grid is down is another key to comfort.  Don’t let the price lead you to think this wireless flood light is wimpy. I have two of these and feel that these lights are worth double the price.

Coleman Mini Lantern:  You already know that I have a think about flashlights but this is a slightly different take on portable lighting.  It is 7.5 inches tall lantern and weighs just seven ounces, including batteries.  And boy does it give off light.  Inexpensive plus, it is a genuine Coleman.

Mr. Heater Portable “Big Buddy” Heater:  Off course you are going to need a heat-source.  With the Mr. Buddy heater, you can use propane indoors safely.  It features an automatic low-oxygen shut-off system that automatically turns the unit off before carbon monoxide fumes reach dangerous levels in home.  To learn more about propane, read the series Propane for Preppers.

Ticket To Ride: This my favorite board game, bare none.  Family friendly, you will spend hours in front of the fireplace playing Ticket to Ride with your favorite people.  This is worth the splurge.

Bicycle Canasta Games Playing Cards:  This timeless classic will keep the entire family occupied when the power it out.  Playing cards or board games should be in everyone’s preparedness kit.

Coloring Books for Grown-Ups:  This is the latest addition to my list of comfort items.  I hope you don’t think I am being silly because there really is something quite relaxing about coloring books. Don’t forget the crayons or Colored Pencils.


What are the best oils for your survival kit? Here are my top picks.

9 Best Essential Oils for Your Survival Kit | Backdoor Survival




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11 Responses to “Survival Buzz: Coming to Terms With Your Prepping Priorities”

  1. Setting priorities is an art, and I would appreciate all the help I can get on setting the best priorities . . .!

    • Your first priority is not to give in to fear and panic. You CAN do this. Take a deep breath and concentrate on doing a minimum of just ONE prep-related thing every day. If you accomplish several things in a single day, that is great. But make one thing your daily goal. It is important to maintain that forward daily progress. You will avoid the trap of feeling overwhelmed and you will not be running in circles, either.

      Remember that every prep action counts. It is not just buying preps. Reading and/or learning about ways to become more self-reliant counts. Finding new ways to use stuff you already have counts. Etc.

      A great place to start prepping is reading the 12 Months of Prepping article on this website. (Look for the link to this list near the top of this page.) Gaye has done a fantastic job of organizing beginning prepping into a dozen do-able sections that also will not leave you financially broke.

      When 12 months have passed, you will be amazed at how far you have traveled on Preppers Road. *SMILE*

  2. as much as canning is a good thing the problem with that is SPACE canned stuff takes up a LOT of it i find that DRYING what ever i can works just as well and it takes up a LOT less space i dry everything from onions apples and even potatoes i have even gone so far as to dry chili

  3. I remember when I was a little thing my mom or my dad had the pressure cooker on the counter in the kitchen with the thingamabob on the top dancing and whistling away. It scared me to to death, especially after being warned to not get near it. I thought the thing would blow up. Apparently I need to know how to safely use one. I haven’t bought one yet as I don’t know which would be a good one. My mom still has it, but doesn’t use it due to her age, I guess. I have read countless articles regarding canning, and at least I know full well which methods are being used today which are NOT safe at all. I have put off starting to can for 2 years now so I really need to listen in on the webinar from my two fav women. I’m so excited you two are doing the webinar together! Thank you for providing this. Afterwards, I DO plan on dragging out the almost 200 mason jars I inherited, and use the seasonal veggies in my area. There’s no way I’m going to let those jars go to waste!

  4. Gaye, I think your comment that anything we do in the way of prepping is more than 90% of the population does is worth its weight in gold. I’m getting a little panicky just lately as things seem to escalate all at once and I feel I’m nowhere near ready, but then if I look at what I have already accomplished compared to probably everyone else I know, I feel a lot better. We can only do our best.

    • I wholeheartedly agree. This is how I am also.

  5. I definitely will sign up for the webinar. I have a pretty good stash of food but know I’m lacking in water technology. I think a Big Berkey will be my next priority. Thanks for your continuing educational & motivational articles.

    • We got a Berkey one year ago and love it. We have a cistern that we feed with rainwater, or if short on rain, we get loads from the lake. We’ve only had to clean the filters about every 3 or 4 months and have definitely paid the cost with savings from bottled jugs

  6. I appreciate all your positive efforts to help everyone make what preparations they are able.

  7. Just wanted to say thank you for your “common” sense help and advice. When I first started to ramp up I was totally in the dark as to what I should be putting away for the family. Thanks to you and some really good friends I met on line,I’m more confident about what I am trying to accomplish for my family. Oh I LOVE the title “Backdoor Survival”
    I am hoping to get a spot for the webinar I REALLY , REALLY want to learn how to can

  8. Great way of looking at things, that whatever we do is better than nothing. I think that covering the basics makes it easier to then plan for edge case disasters. Let’s face it, having food, water, a way to cook and some basic OTC meds or herbal remedies will go a long way in any disaster that is survivable.
    Once the basics are set then you can figure out one extra disaster at a time and do a bit of prep for those.
    For EMP, getting a faraday cage (galvanized steel trash can works great) to store your electronics in is an easy fix. And those electronics are still usable in a non-EMP event and in one handy location. 😉
    For a pandemic, just beef up your OTC meds and your non-electric entertainment, since social distancing is the best strategy to say healthy. If you do plan on going out for more supplies then having some personal protective gear and sanitation supplies, like bleach (or the powder to make it) and a way to spray a diluted bleach solution will go a long way for most diseases.
    I have reached what I consider the base level for preparations and am now slowly working down my list of less likely disasters. I find that most of them need very little extra beyond what I already have for other disasters. So I’m not as panicky as I was a few years ago. I really appreciate this site as an island of reason in what can be a stormy sea of prepping sites. Thank you so much Gaye for all your hard work!


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