A Preparedness Gift That Costs You Nothing

Gaye LevyGaye Levy | May 7, 2017

One of the challenges we all face is dealing with what is going to happen to our preps and our families when we are gone.  This is not something that is pleasant to think about but we are all mortal and well, when our time is up, it is up.  Add to that the risks inherent in a disaster, war or collapse and most certainly, we have to prepare not only for ourselves for those that will be left behind.

A couple of weeks ago, my friend Todd Sepulveda shared something exclusively with his newsletter subscribers that I feel is worth sharing with you.  Todd has generously given me permission to post his article here.

If you are the one person in your household that bears the entire brunt of family preparedness, or even if you are not, you need to keep reading.

Preparedness Letter Fountain Pen Paper

One of the Best Preparedness Gifts You Could Give

by Todd Sepulveda and edited by Gaye Levy

Anyone interested in preparedness will soon learn that planning is crucial.  You can find a ton of information on preparedness planning online.  Just a quick search on the Prepper Website tag cloud will bring up several dozen articles on preparedness plans and planning.

But there is one plan that I feel is THE most important plan that you can put into place.  Not only is it the most important plan you can put into place, but it’s also a gift.  I don’t think it is the greatest gift you can give, but it sure is ONE of the BEST gifts you can ever give to your spouse.

This gift is a letter. Not any old love letter.  This letter is even more special.  It is the last letter you will ever give and details the plans that your spouse should take in the event of your death.

Some people might think this is a little morbid.  But what other way could show your spouse that you love and care for them after your departure from this Earth, than to provide them with a detailed preparedness plan for them to follow?

What follows below is one such letter.

Dear Wife (or husband, partner, son, daughter),

If you are reading this letter, then you know that I have past from this life.  I can’t imagine what you are going through.  I’m sorry that you are alone.  But I want you to know that my faith is strong enough to know that one day we will see each other again in Heaven.

I’m writing this letter, as my final gift to you, to share with you some things that I have put in place to make things a little easier for you in case the world seems to fall apart.  In the past, I have alluded to this secret part of my life, but didn’t make a big deal about it because I felt you didn’t see things from my point of view.  I prepared with the idea that I would always be there and that I could help put those plans into action if the need ever arose. 

Unfortunately, I am not there, but I want you to be as prepared as I was.  Below I will provide you with some plans and advice.  You don’t have to take it, but I hope you will understand my heart and the reason why I think this is so important. 

I love you and I want you to be safe and prepared.

Insurance – My life insurance policy is in the 2nd drawer of my desk on the right side.   When you open the folder, you will find the phone number to the insurance company, the policy and the account number.  You should get $500,000.  That’s a lot of money, but I want you to be careful with it.  First, don’t listen to anyone else on how you should invest it or spend it.  Your life has been turned upside down and you need some time to take everything in.  You should not be making big decisions right now.

Don’t pay off the house.  Others might have a problem with this, but the interest rate on the mortgage is so low that I rather you pay the monthly mortgage and have large sums of money if you need it.

Make sure that you split the money into five different banks.   If for some reason one bank fails, you won’t lose all your money.  The FDIC insures deposits up to $100,000 although that limit has been temporarily raised to $250,000.  And having your money in five different banks gives you more options later.

Once you feel that you are in a good place, feel free to use the money any way you wish.  It is yours, just take time to pray about big purchases.

Gun Safe – You know that I have had my gun safe for many years.  It holds all my rifles and pistols along with extra ammo.  I never went crazy buying a whole bunch of stuff I didn’t need, so every firearm in the safe has a practical purpose.

I wish you would have taken some firearms training with me, but I know it just wasn’t your thing.  If you change your mind, use the gun in the black case marked “Glock.” It is a 9mm and you should be able to handle it ok.  I have plenty of ammo in the safe.  Talk to one of the guys at the shooting range to set up some training. 

I hate that you are alone at this time.  I hope that you will consider using a firearm for protection.

Also in the safe is a false floor.  You will have to remove all the ammo, which is a lot.  If you place your finger in the far right corner, you will feel a groove that you can pull up on.  This will start pulling up the false floor.  Underneath you will find a few pieces of gold, silver and $5,000 in cash.

I know, you’re shocked!  You didn’t realize that I had all this, but believe me, I was thinking of you!  The gold is in small rounds of 1/2 oz.  The silver is a mixture of American Eagles, 1 oz. rounds, 1 & 5 oz. bars and pre-1964 silver dimes.  The silver dimes aren’t just regular dimes!  They are made of silver, so they are worth a lot more than 10 cents.

I will go into why this is in the safe in a moment.  Just please know that it is for a good reason.  After you inspect everything under the false floor, just put it back in the way it was.  It is very safe in there.  The safe is bolted to the ground and is very heavy.  It is safer than having it in the bank.

Oh, if you forgot the code to the safe, a copy of the code is in “our” secret little place.

Office Closet – Thank goodness that my office had a walk-in closet!  I guess that was a perk when we converted one of the extra bedrooms into my office.  Inside the closet you will find boxes of dehydrated food/meals.  Most of these meals just take water.  They are decent, I’ve tried them myself, and will last for 25 years.

Also, you will find two “Water Bobs” in the closet.  These are 100 gallon plastic containers that you would put inside of the two bathtubs to fill up so you would have potable water to drink and cook with.  They can only be used one time, so after the water is gone, you can’t use it again.

Again, I know this is kind of weird for you, but I will explain.

The world that we live in is in a fragile state.  For many years the American people have lived with abundance of EVERYTHING.  We are consumers and we have consumed!  The laws of supply and demand will tell you that you can’t keep taking without ever giving back.  At some point, our resources will be so strained, that something will have to give.  This might seem alarmist, but it isn’t.  I have done my research.  And you know me, I thoroughly research topics that are important to me.

I’m not going into all the resources that are strained right now.  But I do want to mention the economy, because I think this is a critical one that can spark a chain reaction very quickly.

The United States has a huge amount of debt.  I’m sure you have heard me comment on that when I hear something on the news or when an election comes up.  The fact is that it is not possible to pay it all back.  Right now things are ok because of the low interest rates that the government pays, but if that ever goes up, things can spiral very fast.  Many have said that it is a mathematical certainty that our current path is unsustainable.  At first it was economist on the fringe that said this.  Now, even mainline economists, some you see on the news are saying it too.  It’s just a matter of time.

The scary thing is that they don’t know what it would look like if the economy starts to spiral.  It could be very controlled and orderly or it could be mass chaos with rioting all over the place.  This is why it is important to stay informed.

One reason I have the gold, silver and money in the safe is that if the economy does take a turn for the worse, the government might call for a bank holiday.  This is when they shut the banks for a certain amount of time.  During this time, your ATM and credit cards will probably not work.  As everyone saw with Greece recently, their people didn’t have access to any of their money for days.  When this happens, people will operate with cash.  That is why I have the $5,000 in the safe.

If you ever need to touch the money in the safe, use the cash first.  If there was a bank holiday, people will gladly take your cash.  Only keep what you need on you at all times.  This is a good time to know that you have been trained with a firearm!

If the bank holiday persists and people don’t trust what the government is doing in regards to money, people might start using precious metals.  That’s why I have the gold and silver.  Gold and silver have always been used a means of exchange. If you don’t need to use it, just keep it in the safe.  I purchased the gold and silver at low prices, so if you ever have to sell it, you will get a good deal.

If you have to dig into the gold and silver, then things have become pretty bad.  It is possible that food trucks and groceries will become scarce at the store.  This is why I have the food in my office closet.  This is why I also insisted in keeping a well stocked pantry. 

I wasn’t always honest with you about why I wanted to keep a well stocked pantry, “I’m a hungry man” and “I like variety” and “I want to be able to go into the pantry and find anything I want” wasn’t the actual reason.  But you were kind and obliged anyway.  Now you know my real reason.  Please keep it that way for yourself.  By the way, keep the stock of toilet paper up too.  Food, water and toilet paper, you will always need it!

Again, there are so many things that could possibly happen.  It is important to stay informed.  Our friends, the Donvan’s, can help you.  A while back, when I was chatting with Chuck, the topic of the economy came up.  Chuck shared with me that he was preparing for the economy crashing.  After a few more beers and some serious conversation, he confided in me that he and Mary are preppers, people who live a life of preparedness.  You would have never guessed it.  But they believe the same way that I do.  They are very knowledgeable and are willing to help you if you will just ask.

There are so many more things that I would like to tell you and share with you.  Many of these things would be overwhelming.  You don’t need that right now. But I hope that you understand that this letter is a letter of love.  It is something that I can do for you even though I can’t be there with you.

You are a wonderful, smart and caring woman.  All the reasons I fell in love with you are still present in you today.  You are going to be fine and you are going to get through all this.  Stay close to people you trust and rely on your faith.  Faith has never steered us wrong before.

I love you.


Of course, this is an example of a letter that you would write.  Your letter should be relevant to your situation and circumstances.  Your spouse might agree with your prepping.  Or, you might not have a safe.  The main thing is that you leave a letter that encourages your spouse to continue on live the preparedness lifestyle.

Where would you keep a letter like this?

If you have an insurance folder, it might be a good idea to keep a copy inside that folder. Or, if you have a drawer that is only yours, you could keep it there.  Another option would be to keep a letter that points to your Preparedness Letter.  For example, you could leave a letter in your sock drawer that points your spouse to read THE Preparedness Letter that can be found on the top shelf of your gun safe.  You could also leave the letter in a safety deposit box at the bank or your top drawer of your desk.

One thing that I would be careful of is writing all your preparedness plans in one information letter.  For instance, the example letter above does not include the code to the gun safe.

This is a topic that could be a little deflating.  However, leaving plans for your spouse (or partner) is one of the best preps you can have in place.

Todd Sepulveda

The Final Word

As Todd says, this is simply an example of the type of letter you might leave for a spouse, partner or other loved one.  Everyone’s situation is different.  For example, I encourage everyone to pay off their mortgage or downsize so that they can pay it off.  Others do not have life insurance so the money if there is any, will come from another source.  And still, others will practice their faith in a manner that does not follow the traditional form of prayer.

The point, however, is that passing on then tenets of our preparedness lifestyle is something we all must do.  The time will come when we will not be here.  Let us to as much as we can now to ensure that our legacy lives on.

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!


Todd Sepulveda is the editor of  The Prepper Website. The mission of The Prepper Website is to provide links to quality articles and websites that focus on preparing for emergencies, survival, homesteading, simple life and alternative news.  Todd is also the editor of Ed That Matters and the Preparedness Review. To stay current with Todd and The Prepper Website, subscribe to email updates by clicking here.

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In addition, when you sign up to receive email updates you will receive a free, downloadable copy of my e-book The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.

Bargain Bin: A number of these items are mentioned by Backdoor Survival readers in the article 39 Fantastic Prepping Tips.

pocket survival kit_3Streamlight Nano Light Keychain LED Flashlight: Extremely small and light weight yet it will throw off a decent amount of super-bright light. At just .36 ounces and 1.47 inches long, the Streamlight Nano Light Keychain Flashlight will take up a minimum of space in your pocket or bag.

Paracord Survival Bracelet:  Why a Paracord Bracelet? So you always have some of this useful cord on your person!

Windstorm Safety Whistle:  This particular whistle can be heard a long distance away and above howling wind and other competing sounds.

Swedish Firesteel:  Using this basic pocket fire-starter, you can get a nice fire going under almost any conditions. This is a small, compact version.

Pepper Spray:  It is always good to have some form of defense that will temporarily halt a bad guy that is in your face.

Emergency Mylar Thermal Blankets:  These come in compressed packets small enough to fit in a pocket or wallet.  You will be surprised at how warm these will keep you.

Kershaw OSO Sweet Knife:  This “oh so sweet” knife is solidly built, stainless steel knife that comes razor sharp right out of the package. It will pretty much cut through anything the price is amazing.

blocklite flashlightBlocklite Mini Compact Size Ultra Bright 9V LED Flashlight:  One of my readers (James) turned me on to the Blocklite.  I now own four.  There is a similar flashlight called the Pak-Lite (which is more expensive) but it does not have a high-low switch like this one. 

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7 Responses to “A Preparedness Gift That Costs You Nothing”

  1. I’d never thought about this one – and a great idea. Also a great rememberence for young children to read later on ‘why Dad / Mom did the things they did’ when they get older.

    Quick aside – the Blocklite above is cool, but also check out the earlier made PAL light. Slightly larger than the Blocklite because their is a body around the battery, but the thing I like about this model is the LED lite has a very low drain ‘locator’ function – the bulb is on as long as battery is working. Many times, I don’t even have to turn it on, the function able to give enough light to do the task.

    No connection to the flashlight company, just a satisfied customer of two of them for over 5 years. Just a heads up to your readers.


  2. Gaye, you just keep stirring the pot. You know I am older than the hills and I wont be here much longer even if the crap doesn’t hit the fan.
    My daughter from Utah was here last week for her annual visit. She has always said “dad, when you die, I am just going to back a dump truck up to the basement door and haul all this junk away”. This is my baby (and she brought her 3 babies). She is my one child that has the combination to my fire proof gun safe that is bolted to the floor of the walk in closet that I added to my house when I bought the safe. I have a full basement, so the add on room does not have the basement under it, for more fire protection. I keep cash, in folding bills, many rolls of currant coins, a few gold and silver coins, along with junk silver (pre 1964 coins). Besides the safe being very heavy and being bolted to the floor, I also have at least 3000 rounds of ammo to add to its weight.
    Since I had taken all my 4 children to my back yard shooting range when they were 8 or 9 years old to introduced them to all forms of guns, a 357 mag to show a revolver, a 45 auto to show a semi-auto, and a 22 semi to show them just good fun. They were taught to shoot shot guns, semi-auto high power rifles, and again the 22 semi for just good fun.
    This angel ask me to take her children to the back yard and let them shoot. My, was I surprised. An 8 year old, a 10 year old, and a 13 year old that had never been around weapons. With my 22 rifle, they all were putting all shots in a 2 inch circle at 25 yards. With the 22 pistol, all were putting the shots in a 4 inch circle at 25 yards.
    This brought us to talking about her and her dump truck. I sat her down and tried to explain what some of these things were that she would get rid of. My prepper gadgets that some ‘girly girl’ introduced to me. This talk made me realize that I need to put all my prepper things in one place so she would have to take a good look at so she would think about what they were. I’m sure she wouldn’t know what a colloidal silver generator was, a Berkley water filter, what to do with a gallon of 35% food grade hydrogen peroxide, and to her (that looks at all date of manufacture on everything she eats at my house) that food is ok to eat after the manufacture’s suggested used by date, especially the years supply of dehydrated food for the family of 6 I had purchased when all my children lived at home.
    I think this article you published was great. I have been thinking about it recently. I think you could take it to the next step and have the prepper to write about what to do with his prepper items. In my case it would probably be a book. What to do with my home made solar cooker. How to use the rocket stove. Realizing the barrels of water stored in the basement have been there for a long time. Run the water through the Berkley before drinking, or disinfect it with the colloidal silver or the 35% H2O2.
    There is so much I have learned in a life time, so how do you teach someone that has no idea, what to do when TSHTF? If there were some great web sites they could go to, to learn, ‘everything you wanted to know about prepping, but were afraid to ask’.
    Thanks Gaye. You do great.

  3. This is one thing I am putting together. Not so much a letter, but a list of what my wife should do in the event I am no longer here. While we have a very open marriage (as we should), she does not really know the day to day operations of the business I run. Sure she is involved in my business, but working with suppliers, creditors etc., that part she is not, so I am putting together what she will need to do to at least keep current customers happy, and make sure suppliers that need to be paid … get paid.

  4. This is an important but often overlooked aspect of being prepared for the worst. I know I hadn’t thought of it. Not only is it prudent but it’s a nice personal touch too.

  5. So even if your family doesn’t believe as you do; to prepare, when they find something like this, I think it will open their eyes and finally convince them to do what THEY should for themselves and loved-ones. I will write a letter to be sent to my children, out of State, in the event of my passing. I think a Will, in my case is unecessary.
    Thank you for the inspiration!!

  6. awwwwwww, ty this IS wonderful and I will try my best to follow through for my children….best always to you and DRG 🙂


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