Surviving Extreme Winter and Blizzards: “Avoid Panic and Discomfort of Being Unprepared”

by | Feb 10, 2016 | Aftermath, Emergency Preparedness | 76 comments

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    This article was written by Daisy Luther and originally published at her site.

    Editor’s Comment: Once you have taken a mindset of preparing for all eventualities, you will find that you’ve become better prepared in general, and will start to have the things you need in any situation. But until that point, even a heavy winter storm can catch you off guard and leave you without power, heat, water or food.

    Here are some of the best ways to mitigate the cold and keep yourself in the position to ride out the storm, even in the event of a power outage or prolonged storm that might cut you off from society for a while.

    Prepping for a Blizzard: A Practical Survival Guide

    Few can deny the common sense behind preparing for something that is definitely going to happen, yet every year, an impending winter storm sends people rushing out to the store at the last minute, prepping for a blizzard that is due to hit in mere hours. Every winter, if you live in certain climates, blizzards are going to occur. Usually, at least one storm will hit that will cause you to be snowed in. Often, those storms mean you will also lose power. There is the inevitable rush to the store for milk and bread, during which people battle it out for the last supplies left on the shelves.

    But you can avoid all that. You don’t have to be a bunker-dwelling, MRE-chomping, camo-clad prepper to see the logic behind keeping some extra food and other supplies on hand for something that happens every single year.

    This year, avoid the last minute panic and the discomfort of being unprepared. This article is full of links to previous articles that will help you in prepping for a blizzard. Put together a at least the bare minimum kit for riding out the storm.  (Camo is optional.)


    Everyone knows that clean drinking water is something you can’t live without. In the event of a blizzard and power outage, the water may not run from the taps.  The pipes could freeze, or, in the event of grid failure, an electrically driven pump will not work.

    “I’ll just eat snow.” No, this is a horrible idea. First of all, snow is mostly air, and you’d have to eat 20 quarts of it to equal 2 quarts of water. Secondly, if you eat that much snow you will lower your core temperature and put yourself at risk for hypothermia. If you already don’t have water, you have enough problems. You don’t need hypothermia. For a small amount of money, you can have a 5-gallon jug of water sitting in your closet, instead of melting snow, crouched beside a fire in the backyard, watching the pot.  You aren’t in the wilderness fending off bears. This really is not a good plan. First of all, the snow picks up all sorts of pollution as it falls through the atmosphere. The impurities can potentially make you sick. If you really get yourself in a poorly thought-out situation in which snow is your only hope for survival, boil it for 10 minutes before drinking it. Then, when the crisis is over, please store some water so you never have to do this again.

    Each family should store a two week supply of water. The rule of thumb for drinking water is 1 gallon per day, per person.  Don’t forget to stock water for your pets, also.

    You can create your water supply very inexpensively.  Many people use clean 2-liter soda pop bottles to store tap water.  Others fill the large 5-gallon jugs with filtered water from the grocery store.  Consider a gravity fed water filtration device and water purification tablets as well. Other filtration options are the small personal filters like the Sawyer mini or the Berkey-to-go.

    Shopping lists

    Bare Minimum


    Food and a way to prepare it

    Enough with the milk and bread already. Do you even consume milk and bread on a regular basis? This is really not the food you want to propel you through shoveling a driveway 17 times until the plow goes past, at which point you shovel it again.

    There are two schools of thought regarding food during a power outage.  One: you need a cooking method that does not require the grid to be functioning.  Two: you can store food that doesn’t require cooking. This is a good idea if you don’t have an emergency stove or wood heat.

    If you opt for a secondary cooking method, be sure that you have enough fuel for two weeks.  Store foods that do not require long cooking times – for example, dried beans would use a great deal of fuel, but canned beans could be warmed up, or even eaten cold.

    Shopping Lists:

    Bare Minimum



    Freezing to death in your own home would be a terrible way to go, wouldn’t it? It’s pretty anticlimactic. There’s no grand story of adventure. You just basically didn’t have enough blankets and common sense to stay warm in a house. Don’t be that person.

    During the first 24 hours after a power outage, you can stay fairly warm if you block off one room of the house for everyone to group together in.

    Keep the door closed and keep a towel or blanket folded along the bottom of the door to conserve warmth.  You can safely burn a couple of candles also, and in the enclosed space, your body heat will keep it relatively warm.  As well, dress in layers and keep everything covered – wear a hat, gloves (fingerless ones allow you to still function), and a scarf.

    However, after about 48 hours, that’s not going to be enough in very cold weather. You will require back-up heat at this point. If you are lucky enough to have a source of heat like a fireplace or woodstove, you’ll be just fine as long as you have a supply of dry, seasoned firewood.

    Consider a portable propane heater (and propane) or an oil heater.  You have to be very careful what type of backup heat you plan on using, as many of them can cause carbon monoxide poisoning if used in a poorly ventilated area. If you plan to use off-grid heat methods, pick up a carbon monoxide alarm with a battery back-up. The gas has no smell, and often people who die from inhaling it simply drift off to sleep, never to awaken.

    Shopping Lists

    Bare Minimum


    Sanitation needs

    A common cause of illness, and even death, during a down-grid scenario is the lack of sanitation.  We’ve discussed the importance of clean drinking water, but you won’t want to use your drinking water to keep things clean or to flush the toilet.  If the pipes are frozen or you have no running water for other reasons during a winter storm, you’ll need to consider sanitation needs.

    For cleaning, reduce your need to wash things. Stock up on paper plates, paper towels, and disposable cups and flatware.  Keep some disinfecting cleaning wipes and sprays (I don’t recommend using antibacterial products on a regular basis, however in the event of an emergency they can help to keep you healthy.)  Use hand sanitizer after using the bathroom and before handling food or beverages – there may be a lot more germs afoot in a disaster.

    Look at your options for bathroom sanitation.  Does your toilet still flush when the electricity is out?  Many people discovered the hard way that the toilets didn’t work  when the sewage backed up in the highrises in New York City in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.  At our old cabin, the toilet wouldn’t flush without power because the pump was electric.

    If you are on a septic system, with no risk of the toilet backing up into the house, simply store some water for flushing in the bathroom. At the first sign of a storm, fill the bathtub for this purpose.  Add the water to the tank so that you can flush.

    If this is not an option, another solution is to stock up on extremely heavy duty garbage bags (like the kind that contractors use at construction sites) and kitty litter.  Place a bag either in your drained toilet or in a bucket.  Sprinkle some kitty litter in the bottom of the bag.  Each time someone uses the bathroom, add another handful of litter. Be very careful that the bag doesn’t get too heavy for you to handle it.  Tie it up very securely and store it outside until services are restored. (Here are the complete instructions.)

    Shopping Lists

    Bare Minimum



    Lighting is absolutely vital, especially if there are children in the house.  Nothing is more frightening than being completely in the dark during a stressful situation. Fortunately, it’s one of the easiest things to plan for, as well as one of the least expensive.

    Candles are the first things that most people think of in the event of an emergency. While they can be a great solution, they do increase the risk of house fires. Be sure to use them safely and keep them away from children and pets.

    Shopping Lists

    Bare Minimum


    Other tools and supplies

    Some basic items will make your life much easier during an emergency. The good thing is, most folks already have the supplies on the “bare minimum” list. All you need to do is collect them and put them in one easily accessible container.

    Shopping Lists

    Bare Minimum

    • Lighter/waterproof matches
    • Batteries in various sizes
    • Manual can opener
    • Basic tools: Pliers, screwdriver, wrench, hammer
    • Duct tape
    • Crazy glue


    First Aid kit

    You probably won’t need a field trauma kit that allows you to amputate limbs or remove a bullet, but you definitely want to have a few things on hand. It’s important to have a basic first aid kit on hand at all times, but particularly in the event of an emergency.  Your kit should include basic wound care items and over-the-counter medications.

    Shopping Lists

    Bare Minimum

    • Bandages
    • Antibiotic ointments
    • Disinfecting sprays
    • Pain relief capsules
    • Cold medicine
    • Cough syrup
    • Anti-nausea pills
    • Allergy medication
    • Anti-diarrheal medications
    • First aid book


    Special needs

    This is something that will be unique to every family. Consider the things that are needed on a daily basis in your household. It might be prescription medications, diapers, or special foods.  If you have pets, you’ll need supplies for them too.  The best way to figure out what you need is to jot things down as you use them over the course of a week or so.

    Prepping for a blizzard is just common sense

    You can learn more about being prepared for all sorts of disasters with Tess Pennington’s fantastic and comprehensive book, The Prepper’s Blueprint: The Step-By-Step Guide To Help You Through Any Disaster.

    Don’t feel like you are crossing over to the tinfoil hat side by preparing for all eventualities during a winter storm.  This doesn’t mean you’re loading up on gas masks and decontamination suits. It doesn’t mean your house is stacked to the rafters with ammo and body armor. It’s just plain old-fashioned common sense to keep a naturally occurring event from becoming a crisis.

    This article was written by Daisy Luther and originally published at her site.


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      1. Best Option: Move South!

        • When tshtf that’s what everyone will be doing & you’ll be over run. 10 below wind chill right now. We won’t be seeing a lot of zombies here. Love ya Daisy, but if they don’t know it already …..they never will.
          Molon labe

          • I agree there are some benefits to living in a very cold climate area

            mostly your enemies will hate it more then you do, and wont know how to operate in it effectively

            • “Surviving Extreme Winter and Blizzards” – Move to Arizona. 🙂

              • 93 degrees today in East San Diego County. Need rain.

              • 2.5 TDI and you’re good 2 go.

                The ruskies will never get it… Ever.

              • Okay I love it! I want one too!

            • That one of the reasons that I like living out in the boonies. It’s not at all hospitable to the swarms of cockroaches (two-legged) that infest the cities. Also, when things get dire and the authorities clamp down hard, TPTB will have their hands full with the major population areas. They won’t give a s#it about Black Fly Junction, Maine.

              I must say that it’s pretty amusing to read this article. My family has been in New England since the early 1600s and tips like “close off unused rooms” and “have easily prepared foods” go without saying. Ditto for the rest of it. I remember as a small child that whenever a storm was on the way, the bathtub got filled up with water so the toilet could be flushed. This entire article is a blueprint for ordinary life in northern New England.

              During the infamous Ice Storm of ’98 there was no heat or electricity or running water at my place for eight days in the first week of January. I kept the woodstove running 24 hours a day and managed to maintain an indoor temp of 50F which was very uncomfortable but at least it kept the pipes from freezing. Ate cereal, crackers & peanut butter, and heated canned soup on the woodstove. Eagerly went to bed at 6:30 pm just to get warm. Was not nominally a “prepper” back then but the way of life here had made me thus without realizing it.

              When I first got into it, a lot of “prep” advice that I read brought a reaction of: “Well, yeah… doesn’t everyone do that already…?”

        • i call this my “i aint never going to return home list”…let me know what i’ve left out.this used to be in order but i’ve added to it so many times i need to rework it….irregardless….i’m SURE you’ll find something here you didn’t think of!as long as you got all this stuff, you’ll be fine…but it sure aint in ORDER of importance! randy
          water….sugar….flour….powdered milk……….t/p………………top ramen….pancake mix….candy, rock…..DOG FOOD…VEG OIL…rice…..beans…………macaroni…………bleach…………benadryl…..wipies….garbage bags…….plastic cups,forks,spoon,knives .
          22 rounds….12 guage 9mm …45….5.56. 308
          IV for rehydration
          photo albums, identification (birth certificates, social security cards, financial documents, wills/deeds, and medical insurance information), proof of address, as well as items for a 72 hour bag.
          brillo pad makes a good fire starter with jumper cables
          extreme cooler (use it to carry water, if needed)
          antibiotics from the vet supply store ampicillin, amoxacillin, penicilin, and others
          Storable Food
          An Axe
          Lighters Or Matches
          Hiking Boots Or Comfortable Shoes
          A Flashlight And/Or Lantern
          A Radio/Communication Equipment
          A Swiss Army Knife
          Personal Hygiene Items
          A First Aid Kit And Other Medical Supplies
          Extra Gasoline (But Be Very Careful How You Store It)
          A Sewing Kit
          Self-Defense Equipment
          A Compass
          Hiking Backpacks
          A Community
          A Backup Plan
          Extra Batteries
          A Camp Stove
          Heirloom Seeds
          An LED Headlamp
          Calcium Hypochlorite
          Maps Of Your Area
          rifle For Hunting
          Extra Socks
          Gold And Silver Coins For Bartering
          citizens band radio
          battery chargers and phone chargers
          kool aid
          bike tubes
          2×8’s for crossing obstacles(3 feet long)
          wasp spray
          hunting knife
          water and purification stuff
          dutch oven
          coffee/water filters
          Gun Cleaning Kit & Supplies
          Wire and Wire Cutters
          Fire Extinguisher
          hacksaw………GOOD pair of wire cutters….butt connector pliers and wire connectors ….11-1 screwdrivers-not some cheap-o
          6 foot Pry bars-lift heavy items, pop open doors, break locks, move hot objects. harbor freight
          sandpaper/crocus cloth…………….. file for sharpening tools……….. hammer
          bailing wire
          box of bolts/nuts/hose clamps
          stanley pocket saw
          3/32” E-6010 welding rods. These can be used with three 12 volt car batteries and some jumper cables to make an emergency field repair.
          peanut butter and crackers makes a great shtf meal
          vise grips
          fix a flat/air compressor
          Tarp (2) and 550 para-cord (shelter) You want two tarps, one for shelter above the head and one for the ground under your head
          Ponchos to protect from rain
          A folding saw and shovel.
          A handheld chainsaw (they are about the size of a mans wallet)
          Lightweight hatchet
          Army survival manualor others
          2 pairs of socks. One pair of our socks is a thermal type(wool is best) that will keep your feet warm in up to zero degree weather. It all depends on where you live and where you will be traveling. Cotton socks tend to hold moisture so you might not want cotton.
          good pair of warm gloves/work gloves. Mine are a combination of both.
          A pair of good boots or hiking shoes
          A pair of long pants. I prefer not to have jeans. They are heaver and if they get wet, they stay wet for a long time.
          One pair thermal underwear/pants and shirt, at LEAST for everyone in family.
          dogs and dog food …small dogs hear EVERYTHING, and eat less!
          deck of cards
          food…pepperoni granola bars…..
          first aid book… where there is no doctor book
          paper plates
          ziplock bags
          aluminum foil
          butane stove or some other way to cook
          eye drops
          chap stick
          plastic wrap
          powdered milk will be very important..have a LOT of it!
          Bug Out Bag Contents
          The Pack – I have a LC-1 “Alice” pack but any quality pack with enough capacity will do. Stick with camouflage, dark green or other natural colors that blend with the terrain.
          Water – A canteen with cup and cover for your belt, water bottle and a good filter.
          Fire – Waterproof matches, a magnesium fire starter and tinder.
          Food – Pack enough to last 5-7 days. Rice, oat meal, beef jerky, energy bars etc. Another option is MRE’s and the freeze-dried foods. Choose foods that are light weight and a suitable shelf life.
          Stove – A small stove is essential it you want to stay hidden. Smoke and noise from the cutting and burning of wood would be undesirable if you are in hostile territory or being pursued. I have a Peak-One backpackers stove, there are others but this is what I have and can recommend.
          military 4 part sleep system…protects to minus 30 degrees if you know what to do with it…and at LEAST have the bivy bag part of it in your car in case you get stranded….if you are dressed for the climate you’re in, it might only take that bivy to save yer life. randy
          Shelter – Rain poncho and tarp or compact tent, stick with natural colors that blend with the surrounding area.
          Cooking – I have a Stainless Steel 5-Piece Mess Kit, that I ordered from but any lightweight kit will do.
          First Aid – It’s best to assemble your own kit, tailored to your needs, or if you are lazy you can buy a ready-made kit. Don’t forget to add personal medications.
          Light – I have a 2-AA Cell Mini LED Flashlight Mini LED Flashlight and a 9-Hour Candle.
          Tools – A folding saw, Swiss Army pocket knife, and fixed blade knife. A light weight shovel and Machete are nice, but add extra weight.
          Clothing – At least one extra pair of socks and underwear add other items if you feel the need and have the space.
          Fishing – Line, hooks and sinkers and a few small lures. I also have a small gill net for catching fish.
          Snare wire – I make my own from copper wire. Don’t forget to include at least 50 ft of parachute cord.
          Plastic bags – Two or three large lawn bags and several zip-lock sandwich bags, can be used for a number of tasks and to keep things dry.
          Binoculars – See game and enemy before they see you.
          Sewing kit – Needle and thread don’t forget to include a few extra buttons.
          This n’ that – Head net, electrical tape, face paint, gloves, sharpening stone, file, etc.
          Firearms… Everyone has their own idea of what the “perfect” survival firearm is or should be.
          Coffee, sugar, and chocolate.And salt. Buy these items in bulk. Store in baggies for trade.
          coffee filts for straining water and bleach
          digging bar
          tow straps/shackles/chain with pipe for towing
          loadbearing vest
          pain reliever
          Children’s pain reliever
          First aid book
          Prescription medications (keep copies for records)
          Cold/flu medicines
          Blood clotting
          Sterile gauze
          Dressing bandages
          Dressing rolls
          Medical tape
          Bandages of all sizes
          Alcohol wipes
          Hydrogen peroxide
          Eye flushing solution
          Anesthetic solution
          Hypodermic needles (for the antiseptic solution)
          Electrolyte tablets
          Cold Packs
          Antibiotic ointment
          Skin irritation creams
          Suture needles/string
          List of medical contact phone numbers
          Medical history file (if needed)
          medicine cabinet…take the whole damn thing
          giant channel-lock pliers and crescent wrench
          vitamin c…scurvy

          • you forgot the Semi to move all that

            just poking

            • just remember, it’s a list to pick from…not EVERYONE needs everything here, but i got most of it….i aint buggin’ out, but you never KNOW, you may be forced to move out, and you’ll want to have a few choices of what to take along…SOME of this should be readily able to be loaded/moved at 10 or 20 minutes notice. hurricane, flood, volcanoe, earthquake.

              • I was just ribbin ya BCOD

                I am the bug out location, so I’m not going anywhere either
                unless its to fight another day

                • thanks fer makin’ shtfplan a better site! BTW, never use regular bulb flashlights…LED bulbs will have MUCH longer battery life

                  • bcod,

                    Great list! Thank you for sharing it!

                  • Only problem with LEDs are they give you no warning when the battery has dropped too low to apply bias to the semi conductor. Instant lights off.

                    • thanks john…never thought of that…i DO carry several flashlights, because they’re like ex-wives….you just can’t trust ’em!

                    • I have a LED nano flashlight that I carry in my bathrobe pocket at night. It’s so small that I don’t even know it’s there, and it produces a surprisingly bright light for something so tiny. [10 lumens]

                      It’s an excellent backup in case your main flashlight goes down and you need a temporary light to swap out the batteries in your larger light.

                      This little light has two shortcomings, though. First, you twist the flashlight head for on/off which means that if you carry the light on a keychain, the head can gradually become unscrewed and fall off without you noticing. I really dislike this design element.

                      The second drawback is that the flashlight uses 4 very tiny button batteries which you pretty much have to order online because they are difficult to find in stores. Also, I have an older Greatlite model 32826 (no longer made) which includes a tiny ‘wrench’ that is necessary to access the battery compartment. I don’t see this included in the newer Streamlight models so maybe they’ve improved the design.

                      Despite these two annoyances, it really is a very rugged and useful little light and I urge folks to take a look. The nano light is currently available on Amazon for around $7. Look for the Streamlight model 73001.

              • Here is an inexpensive lightweight stove that would fit nicely in a get home bag.

                Esbit Ultralight Folding Pocket Stove with Six 14g Solid Fuel Tablets

                $10.99 at Amazon

                “The Esbit stove was invented in 1936 by a German company that contracted their stove to the German Wehrmacht. During WWII, the stoves were “discovered” by American GI’s, who often kept them as souvenirs.

                After the war, the Esbit company continued to manufacture the stove for the West German Bundeswehr. Many American soldiers who were stationed in Germany for the next 60+ years personally bought the stove for their own field use.”

                “Other fuel types can be used. Small pieces of wood, charcoal, a tea light and an alcohol burner all can be used in the stove.”

                  • Thanks for the link – it heats poking holes in a soup can!

                • thanks backatcha! you contribute more than most here, and i for one appreciate you!

                • google “swiss army volcano stove” they USED to be 15 bucks, now 45…even a place to make toast on them, burns anything…they got popular, and now hard to find/expensive.

                • I have an old propane camp stove, not super compact, but I also have an adapter to run it off the 20 pound propane tanks I have around for my grill. Off a 20 pound tank it’ll run for weeks, maybe months of regular use.

                  My barbecue grill sits lovingly on my back patio, for anyone to steal. if you are like me, the day the SHTF, start dragging that grill into the garage, shed, house. Keep it under lock and key in the SHTF. The tank of fuel would become gold in just days after “SHTF day one”. You can’t use a grill in the house, but you could certainly use the side burner on a grill like mine in the house all you like (but not for heat).

                  Single most important item to have in a blizzard, extra shear pins for your snowblower. A fact learned by experience.

                  A generator plus fuel for power failures can keep the heat and refrigerator working. Be careful of CO poisoning especially in a snow storm, where snow can block expected fresh air sources, and expected exhaust exits.

                  The last two foot of snow blizzard that hit my hovel caused snow piles so deep my snow blower could not throw the snow any higher. Contrast that to a story about a turn of the century story where a local microburst storm dropped ten feet of snow on a section of NY City. I can’t even imagine. You’d need to be shoveling the roof near constantly to prevent roof collapse. Got snow shoe shoes?

                  • Follow up. I knew a guy that purposely set up his emergency generator in his barn. If anyone tried to steel it, there was so much CO that they would never make it out alive. Morbid! When it was time to refuel he knew what doors to open, vent the area and safely refuel the generator.

          • the military ECWCS, extreme cold weather clothing system(google it) can be a very good way to keep warm….they’ve spent many millions of dollars researching so they got keeping warm down to a science…buy it at gunshows, swap meets, craigslist, online…longjohns, fleece, parka, are some of the items you SHOULD have when it gets below freezing.

          • buttcrackofdoom, I love your list. Can I make one suggestion? Add the #1 Best Selling Book in the World, the Holy Bible

            • yes, and don’t forget the boy scout manual….those two books will provide you with everything you need to know to survive.

          • Bcod, love your list! 🙂

            • well copy and paste that sumbich!!!! i will post my “going out of town for more than a day list” in a couple days…it’s been a while…..thanks!

              • Bcod, will do. I’ve got a pretty well organized list I put in excel complete with tabs and resource lists/book titles. Will fish out my thumb drive and post as well.

                • good idea, thanks….i try not to post too many lists, but i DO believe they help a lot of people…hope mac don’t mind us hoggin’ a little space.

                • Oh fuck off and die you poison plant witch with the 666 code.

          • Boots and socks, boots and socks, boots and socks.

            • boots is on there………TWICE!and socks is on there 3 or 4 times….but you are VERY right. sooooo important.

        • AnyMan, Oh yea, like they are really prepared with their A/C units and sun screen. Hint: Google ‘population density’…

      2. We have the Berkey travel & the Lifestraw family

        • I have those and chemical purifiers – JIC

      3. Despite being universally hated by almost everyone who knows about it, President Obama went ahead and authorized the signing of the TPP treaty this week. But it’s important to remember that this treaty isn’t just unpopular among Americans. There are just as many haters living in the other countries that are involved in the treaty.
        For example, over a thousand people protested the deal in New Zealand on Thursday, despite the Prime Minister’s assurances that it “will enhance the prosperity of our people” and that “New Zealand is proud to be involved in this whole process.” But the most scathing rebuke of the treaty occurred the next day in Auckland, when Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce was being interviewed about the TPP.

        A woman threw a pink dildo at the minister’s face, and cried out “that’s for raping our sovereignty” before she was hauled away by security. As silly as it may be, when everything we know about this treaty is considered, it seems like an appropriate response.

        this type of act needs to be repeated every time one of these pukes show their ugly faces

        • I got something better to throw at them,,, and its followed by a lit match

          • roger that!

          • ditto – and it won’t be pleasurable.

        • MOST people dont even know what the TPP is,,, they think its some sorta super toilet paper,
          MOST dont even care! Thats why, guess what, I WONT CARE WHEN THEIR JOBS DRY UP AND EVERYTHING FALLS APART! When the government cant and wont do anything other than herd them into the soup lines,
          People are more concerned about the sports spectacle of the week and what color panties kim kardashian is wearing,,,
          They are amuzed by the spectacle of the politicians climbing over eachother like a freakin buncha crabs,,
          They are too caught up in getting their GMO free organic vegan gluten free double grandee soy chai whatchamafuckit,,,
          TPP? Whatyoutalkinboutwillis

          • “getting their GMO free organic vegan gluten free double grandee soy chai whatchamafuckit,,,”

            Whoa Kula!

            Wait a sec now.

          • Talk to almost anyone you meet about what is going on and their ignorance will scare you.

      4. I live in the upper midwest…basically the coldest area of the lower 48 with some of the most wind. My first line of defense is a 5000-watt generator in my garage. I have a male-male cord that plugs into the generator and into a 220-volt outlet in the garage. Flip off the master breaker in the basement, start the genny and presto, electric for the whole house when snow or ice takes down a pole or line somewhere. Keeps the furnace, water, lights, freezer, fridge and everything else running. You can’t use the stove, microwave or AC but pretty much everything else works if you don’t have too much going at any one time. I usually am able to offer neighbors a live extension cord to run their fridge or freezer or whatever they need as well, which builds good-neighbor points and shows them the usefulness of being prepared. My genny plus 30 or more gallons of fuel at all times is probably my best prep and has actually been used more than any other.

        I still have a fireplace, blankets, heavy winter clothing, stored water and food and so on, but they are a secondary line of defense.

        • If your garage is attached, you can get carbon monoxide leaking into your house. A generator should be outside or in a separate building.

          A possibility is building an enclosure for the generator in the garage, adding dryer hoses for air intake and outlet, and connect the hoses to the outdoors.

          • Actually, in my case the cord is about 16 feet long and the genny sits right next to the walk-in door from the backyard when not in use. There is a weather-protected corner right outside the door (protected from rain, at least) so I can just lug it outside the door and fire it up outside. I’ve got a few sheets of plywood I can surround it with to cut the noise a little as well.

      5. This article seems to be more about general preparation in preserving day to day comforts opposed to out right survival. And that is OK I keep boardgames, paper, writing utensils, and things to keep the kids entertained. These items can be very important if you suddenly had no electronic gadgets.

        It is sad though most are not prepared and live in a urban area where they have very few choices and even fewer skills

      6. If you have not prep. by now shame on you.

      7. Potatoe gun that shoots molitov i know off subject just a thought

      8. Nicely organized and easy links to follow for anyone seeking to add additional preps. Well done Daisy!

        Good safety tips for any newer preppers and especially those with young children.

        The safety tips are also good reminders for grandparents who may have forgotten and have young children staying with them.

        My one year old granddaughter was visiting recently. Little ones can move QUICKLY. We added a large safety screen around the wood burning stove.

        Empty 2 liter soda bottles work great to store water. Clean the bottle and cap with dish cleaner. To remove the soda smell from the cap, soak the cap in white vinegar for at least 24 hours. Clean the cap with dish cleaner and fill the bottle with water.

        The 2 liter bottles are not heavy and an older person or a school age child can easily carry them to the bathroom or wherever needed.

        I label the bottles with a piece of masking tape with the month and year (2/16) on the top of bottle. If the water is not used in 12 months, I use it to water house plants or the garden and refill the bottle.

      9. Always love your articles Daisy.

        But I have to laugh. This isn’t preparing for an emergency, this is what I grew up with everyday. When I was a kid, my mother always had tons of can goods on hand. She wasn’t preparing for an emergency, it’s called stocking up when things are on sale. My wife’s family was the same way, everyone back then did it. we just continued doing what our parnets did.

        I just don’t know what people are thinking today.

        Many people probably know about this product, but doesn’t hurt to mention it, great for storing water in the bathtub and still be able to use it for drinking water.

        ht tp://

        Don’t forget folks. don’t use old milk containers for storing water, you’ll never get all the milk residue out and it will ruin the water quality.

        • Those bathtub things are great. We got one! 🙂

        • We just fill up litter buckets with water and put them in the bathtub. Then we don’t worry about leaking. Each one is good for a couple of flushes.

          Also, remember the hippie rhyme from the 1960s-1970s:

          “If it’s yellow, let it mellow.
          It it’s brown, flush it down.”

        • Seems like one could drop that into 4-sided a wooden enclosure, if you’re like me and don’t have a tub. I do have a 3/4 inch piece of plywood that will fit on the walk-in side of my shower, to give it four sides. I could probably fill this tub thing most of the way up.

          Thanks for the link.

      10. Learn to love winter; learn to fight in winter. All the enemies of the West apart from the Russians and the Asians hate winter; can’t fight in winter. Use that to your advantage.

        From that you should know who to make alliances with.

        You forgot to mention a good woman makes for an awesome bed warmer. Pick wisely: no heifers, make sure she can touch her toes and run. The obese ladies will be a big burden in a crisis.

        • Nothin wrong with pleasantly plump.

          More cushin for the pushin

          • Yeah, I’m in shape, round is a shape. Kidding…

        • i been lookin’ for a good woman for 45 years….i THOUGHT i found a couple…but lately, i started lookin’ for a fish ridin’ a bicycle….the odds are MUCH better. it’s like lookin’ for a black cat, in a dark room….that’s not there. but i STILL like the odds better’n findin’ a good woman. it’s like my last wife said, “why do I need to save any money/prep/worry about things, i got YOU”….”my money’s mine, and YOU can take care of US”…PFFT!…so she got sent to the “witless protection program.”

          • bcod,

            Sorry to hear this. I pray you meet a good woman soon.

            Finding Like-Minded People in Your Area
            Survival blog

            (direct link below)

            • i appreciate the thought, but “good” women are already married in MY circle of friends, so i guess i can always wait out the old men, then POUNCE on the widow!..LMAO!

              • American women used to be very hot. Just watched the Bowie movie Man Who Fell to Earth. Rip Torn is a horny professor laying his students. All of them are just balls achingly hot: young hippie students from the 70s. What happened since then?

                • could it BE that movies aint like real life??…nawww…i suppose that whole free love thing was a flash in the pan…but i DO believe that with the gub-mint giving out free everything to mothers, they aint got to find a husband and make a family anymore…get preggers, have a baby, get paid for years,…rinse, and repeat.

            • BTW, mom….your answer to me says VOLUMES about your character…instead of bleating about how there must be sumthin’ wrong with ME,…you put up a post to help…..classy!…take a bow.

      11. one little thing to consider concerning lighting/batteries

        in cold weather
        alkalines lose their power FAST

        you may want to consider having some lithiums on hand
        they are more expensive
        but perform MUCH better in cold weather and have an extremely long storage life

        • Also consider a solar battery charger. This way you can keep a rotation of rechargeable batteries going and not have to worry about running out. I recently picked up a 5,000 mah battery bank with built in solar charger for like $10 on an online auction site. It’s meant to charge a cell phone, but could charge other batteries in a pinch with a micro USB to whatever battery you have adapter. I also keep a spare battery for my cell phone with 2.5x the stock batteries capacity. As the phone can also be a flashlight, it gives me another layer of capability.

      12. Let’s say that you live in an apartment. Small things that could help you make it for a short time. Heavy blankets , a sleeping bag and a small tent. Put them in the smallest room that you can set up a tent. Short term survival. Be very careful of those little propane heaters. You need good ventilation. That means an open window which defeats the benefits of using a heater. Don’t die trying to stay warm.

      13. The biggest helps I have found to keeping warm are thermal mass and insulation.

        My home office is separate from the rest of the house and just has a propane heater. The rest of the house is old and not insulated. My office is well-insulated and tight. It’s also pretty full of stuff, so there is thermal mass and less air to change temperature.

        As an experiment, I have not used the heater in my home office this winter. It is cool in my room but not unbearable. The insulation and thermal mass keeps the temperature from swinging quickly. By the time the room starts getting pretty chilly, the weather outside is already warming back up. So then I can open an exterior south-facing door and let some warmth in. I also have a south-facing window that helps.

        A plus to this is that I’m saving money on propane. If it ever gets down to the teens and stays for more than a couple of days, I’ll start the heater. In the South, I think that if you have a decent insulated house and plenty of clothes and blankets, it’s highly unlikely you’ll freeze to death.

        I’ll let you all know if I have to use the heat in my home office this winter.

        Note: My computer and lots of hard drives help a little with the heat while the electricity still works.

      14. Long ago, my house had a large wood burning cook stove. The chimney still exists, and it has been inspected. In my bedroom I have a boxwood stove (cast iron) that is there for looks. We have a little electric heater in it. That’s my go-to emergency heat source along with a propane heater. We have a basement here, and it stays relatively the same temperature year round without a heat source. I’ve heard that mylar can help insulate windows as well.

        This year, we went for tacky practical. The old house was drafty in the window department so up went the plastic. It made a huge difference. I’ve also heard that as a last resort, you can put a tent up inside your home.

      15. Is it bad for to read this while sunbathing and drinking a cocktail?

      16. Seen this article on BIN. Made this same comment there. Boiling water for 10 minutes is a waste of water. Once it is rolling boil it is good to go. Only time you would need to boil longer is over 2k feet elevation. Boil temp drops at higher elevations.

        Water temperatures above 160 degrees Fahrenheit kill virtually all pathogens within 30 minutes, including bacteria and the two prime backcountry nemeses: giardia and cryptosporidia. At 185 degrees Fahrenheit, they’re dead in just a few minutes. Almost nothing can survive sea-level boiling temperature (212° F) for any length of time, though a few pathogens like botulism can persist at even higher temperatures (none that are a concern in the backcountry).

        Keep in mind that boiling temperature decreases with altitude at roughly one degree per 500 feet. So on top of Mount Washington (6,288 feet), the boiling temperature will be almost exactly 200 degrees F. If you’re traveling to high country outside of the Northeast, boiling temps can be as low as 195 degrees F (9,000 feet) or 190 degrees F (12,000 feet). Also the nasties that would be collected from snow falling can not be boiled out. You need to distill it to eliminate those.

        Have boiled water to drink from the Yukon river to Everglades from Iraq to Afghanistan. 1 minute does it. Have distilled my own sea water to drink. ( actually the great south bay off of long island. ) Love Daisy and all her articles so no disrespect to her in any way. Her Organic Prepper site is one of the places I direct people to for information.

        “Survival is simple, Just don’t die”

      17. I’m a Canadian HVAC technician. If my power is out I’m using my 3,000 watt power invertor, powering it from my vehicle battery. I’ll run an extension cord from one of it’s two 115 volt outlets to the power connection on the gas furnace. This will get it operating as long as I have the van running. The other 115 volt outlet can be used for lights, or microwave, etc. I will use this setup sparingly on a full vehicle gas tank plus a spare 5 gallon jug.

      18. How about a snow shovel and some rock salt. A snow thrower or plow for your truck. I don’t see how some hand tools will help you really. Grid phone number to call them when the trees fall on the wires. I deal with this shit all the time I love it. I wouldn’t worry about water you can melt snow with a fire or stove. It’s just snow people dig out your car and walkway. Life goes on. You’ll be fine. Unless your not used to snow and believe the media hype about how dangerous the storm is. I laugh a the weather people on the news when they say blizzard coming. I drive a rig in the shit no problem the only reason I have to go back to the shop is because the businesses in the area close so their office people can go home and the wires start to sag and can be ripped down. I never look back to see either. Don’t wanna know. If I get stuck that’s what tow trucks are for. I guess if your from where ther is no snow you’d be scared. You need thicker skin. This looks like a shopping list to me.

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