Monday, June 23, 2014

One step closer to being prepared

B*72: Supplies for 2 people for 72 hours
Let it be known that Josh and I are lousy preppers ("prepper" being a popular nickname for those who actively stockpile for disasters). Once, about a year after Ada was born, we took it upon ourselves to prepare an emergency rations box. I rediscovered the container while readying our house to be sold last summer, only to discover that the water bottles had burst, soaking through the graham cracker boxes. Everything inside the box was covered in black mold, right down to the expired jar of peanut butter.

We're not even well prepared for power outages. Whenever a severe storm is forecast, Josh runs around gathering candles and pilfered restaurant matchboxes like he's getting ready for a seance. And given that an actual fire burned down three neighbors' homes a block north of us just a couple of months ago, I don't think its wise that we court disaster with our disaster preparations.

So when Boltwell (get it, bolt well?) introduced me to their line of fairly-mainstream prepper packages (I say mainstream because they don't talk Doomday prophecy and their packaging is hip and modern), I was happy to take a look. I got to try out a number of their most popular products, including a first aid kit more substantial than any I currently have (and regularly raid for Band-Aids), a handy multitool, a super lightweight pocket lantern (batteries included!), and a fantastic weather/AM/FM radio that can work with AAA batteries, a hand crank or solar power. Best of all, the hand-crank radio has a USB port so you can use it to charge your mobile phone--the hardest thing to do during an extended power outage. They also sent me a dense, 400 calorie raspberry energy bar that could likely be weaponized and a disposable, portable toilet bag, I guess for the kind of emergencies I don't think preppers are terribly worried about.

Feeling 100% more prepared than before (if still not 100% prepared), I took it upon myself to also purchase fire extinguishers for the house. After the incident with the exploding water bottles, I'm not sure I'm ready to restock those. Maybe I'll just get some purification tablets and plan to drink out of our rain barrel.