Why Most “First Things to Buy” Prepper Lists are Stupid (#10)
If you see posts on Pinterest or graphics on Instagram about prepping, there are lots of “20 First Things to Store” or “25 Must Have Items for Prepping” type articles. The problem is that the lists make no sense for the short term. They have lots of important food stuffs on them, but if you really needed to depend on those things for a week or two, you would have no variety.
And therein lies the problem, especially if you are stocking up with a family. Beans, rice, olive oil, salt, SPAM, oats, and canned tomatoes isn’t going to get you very far. Yes, you will increase your chances of surviving. But food fatigue will be real and I personally would not want to convince small children that eating those foods again for the ninth day in a row is fun.
No One Eats Like That
The reality is that no one eats like that if they have a choice. I’m assuming since you are reading this that you currently still have a choice of what kinds of foods to put in your home. You need to fill your panty with the foods that your family actually eats.
So we are going to focus on building up a pantry full of food that is practical, economical, tastes good, and that everyone will actually want to eat when difficult times come.
Most Emergencies Will Be Relatively Short Term
There are many different kinds of situations and emergencies that we’re going to consider. Some of them are the mundane things like a power outage for 24-48 hours or the stomach bug goes through the house and no one can leave to get to the store. Some of them are deadly serious such as a pandemic or a breakdown of the delivery system in our country (see Why You Need to Prepare #3).
But the reality is that most emergencies that we will face will be relatively short term. For that reason, our initial focus is on making sure we keep our pantry stocked with food that meets our immediate needs in a relatively brief period of interruption.
This is why many of the lists that float around out there don’t make sense. They focus on stocking up for Armageddon, but that is probably the least likely thing we will face. It’s far more likely you’ll end up with an entire family that’s sick with the flu and no way to get to the store. Or you’ll have a ice storm or snow storm and nothing moves for three days.
Those are the easy kinds of emergencies to prepare for and what we are going to focus on first. We’ll eventually think about what we should do regarding the catastrophic type events, but building up a regular pantry is the first step in getting to the more extensive prepping.
Less Stress by Keeping Things Normal
The last reason I think most of these lists aren’t useful has to do with stress. During difficult times, the more you can keep things normal the better off everyone will be. This is especially true if you have children.
Changing your diet and staple foods when you are already in a difficult situation won’t make things easier. Additionally, if you change from a diet heavy on refined foods to beans and rice, you’ll also be suffering stomach upset as your body isn’t used to that. That will do even more to contribute to family members being uncomfortable and unhappy!
This is, again, why it’s so important to store foods that you eat regularly and not just download a list from the internet in order to quickly buy the things recommended by the expert. The online expert doesn’t know your family.
This is why you don’t buy up a bunch of food that has a long storage life just because you can get it for a great deal. It’s not a great deal if no one wants to eat it.
Instead you’re going to put together a personalized plan to keep things as normal as possible in your home and focus on buying the things that match the needs and desires of your loved ones.
Thankful wife of David for 22 years and momma to Caroline for 13 years - Relaxed/Unschoolerish - Lover of books - Seeker of wisdom - Drinker of too many coconut milk mochas from Starbucks