SURPRISE! Your Emergency Drill Begins NOW!

Here’s your emergency drill. Can you handle it?

As you know emergencies can never come at an opportune time.  They are always sudden. No music lingering in the background to tell you that they are just about to pounce on you, right? So here you are, having an ordinary day, when some lady on the internet tells you “Ok. It’s time for you to put on your big girl/boy pants and see just how serious you are about preparedness.”  So, are you ready?  Can you commit? Can you lengthen your stride and see just what kind of a mental, physical, and tangible state of preparedness you are in? Don’t worry though. This particular challenge will only affect that food area of your preparedness efforts. Ready?

Thirty days. No restaurants. No deli food. No pre-made stuff to purchase. Oh, and stay out of Costco’s sample section. You’ve got to cook it all your own based on what you’ve got right now? Ok. Ok. I’ll give you ONE day to prepare—but that’s it!

Are you scared? Are you yelling and swearing at the computer screen right now telling me there is NO way you’re going to do this?  If not now, then WHEN?  You have all of the rest of your comforts in life still.  You still get your car, electricity, Facebook, etc.  All you’re doing is living off of what you’ve got ready for yourself right now.

Here’s how you will benefit from this challenge.

1)      You will use what you’ve got and help cycle through it.

2)      You will force yourself to be creative and use what you’ve got on hand to make great meals.

3)      You will better learn the art of “waste not” living.

4)      You will learn what physical strength you need to monitor so that you have the strength to plan and cook each day.  Keep in mind that during this challenge you’ll still have access to a microwave, etc. So let’s not start whining yet, please.  But you will realize just how much physical energy it takes to have every morsel of food received come about only because of work.

5)      You will learn whether or not you’ve been storing items in which your family can actually live and thrive.

6)      You’ll learn the reality of the need for comfort foods and a variety of foods. I can’t stress this lesson enough. So many folks tell me that they have a years supply and then they tick off staples that you nor I would ever eat for a week, let alone  year—at least not if there was a Baskin-Robbins open.

7)      You’ll be more wise in the future in what you stock up on and you’ll learn that you can’t afford NOT to stock up when a good deal/sale comes your way.  This experience will definitely put things in their proper perspective.

8)      You’ll learn how to better organize your foods so that they are accessible and require the least amount of physical effort as possible or realistic. I find it strange that one of the first things people think about when they think about survival is oft times the most inaccessible supply to reach.

9)      Your family (particularly the little ones) will learn the value of “work to have” instead of just asking for it and “Voila! It’s there.”

10)  Lastly, you’ll learn “I can do it!” and that’s a lesson that no one else but yourself can teach you.

So why am I kicking up a new challenge for myself for the next 30 days? I know it won’t be easy, but I’m positive that it’s necessary. Here’s why I’m doing this for my own good.

My blasted health challenges have been annoying lately—to say the least. Additionally I’m married to a man that loathes to cook—even if it’s a box of macaroni and cheese. As a result of the two scenarios combined, I feel like we’ve been spending way too much money going out to eat. Even last night, when he got a steak burrito and I got a yummy mahi-mahi burrito, chips, beans, and a soda all for only $1.70 (thank you, coupons) I still felt guilty. I know that eating out isn’t healthy—no matter how great the food may be. Each time a person eats out they increase their chances of getting the “flu du jour” by over 50%. While that may seem like a safe bet to some, I don’t like the odds.

The other aspect that’s bothering me is that it’s likely that regardless of what survival scenario may ever come my way, I doubt I’ll be feeling any better than normal. So then what’s a girl to do? How will I eat when I'm married to "Lucille Ball in the kitchen"? I decided I didn’t like that vulnerability. It’s VERY likely that the primary caregiver in a family will get ill or injured at some point in a troubling time. For goodness sake, I burned my hand doing something that I do all the time and that about sent me over the edge. Yet burns, accidents, injuries and illnesses are much more pervasive in a “disaster” type of scenario. As such, I decided I had to engage in some Mental Preparedness and draw a line in the sand.

So, design this challenge to fit your needs, but don’t be wimpy about it. Worst case scenario make yourself refrain from non-do-it-yourself- foods all but once a week. Whatever you do PLEASE make it a REAL challenge. It shouldn’t be that hard knowing that you can go back to normal at the end of 30 days. You could just do a trial run and see just how long you could manage with what you’ve got on hands. If you are willing to give the trial a go, but run into an obstacle, go ahead, fix the problem and then proceed. Keep a list of what you run out of and when. Then you have a new hot spot to focus on in your preparedness efforts.

Here are my personal rules for this challenge. I will be independent in my food preparation and supplies. I will cook for myself over the next 30 days strictly from what I have on hand. And my Prince Charming is actually on board with me on this too (because he loves saving money more than he hates cooking—hee hee) and he has agreed to take care of some of the load as well. I will  have to live off of what I’ve got right now.  Yup. Right at this very minute I will create meals based on what I’ve got on hand and nothing else. So yes, that means when I’ve got company coming next month, I’ve got to get creative and confident so that I can feed them, too, the old fashioned way, for the entire time they are here. But isn’t that what I’ve been planning to do in my Food Preparedness efforts anyway?  So why not start now?  One caveat I will be giving myself however. Since I believe in working while the sun shines, I will still be making purchases via coupons—however, I am not allowed to use my purchases to accomplish this challenge AND I can only purchase items that are 75% or better off for this entire 30 days.

Some time ago we did a 14 day challenge similar to this.  But I think it needs to go longer—to be more of a push and a strengthening challenge.  After all, if I believe in preparing for a year, wouldn’t it be a good barometer reading to make sure that I can handle 30 days?

Keep in mind that this means no morning coffee or soda from the gas station. No bakery or deli items purchased at the store. And no free hot dog for the promotion at the car dealership either. *grin*  Use what you know is safe, is cooked properly, and is the best bang for your buck.

So, who’s going to give this a shot?  Think of this as taking control rather than giving up things that you think you love or need right now. Think of this as another step in reaching your goal of independence.  Oh, and did I mention that there’s a prize for one of you?

On July 25th we will be taking all of the persons who made comments regarding THIS CHALLENGE on our blog or on Facebook and entering them to win one SUPER prize! What is it?  Its unlimited access to any of the live webinars I teach for the next 3 months!  --However many you want on whichever topic you want.  So feel free to let the rest of us know how the challenge is going for you because the more you comment, the more chances you have at winning. But know that the best prize is that which you will personally gain by going through this experience!

Onward, ever onward in our efforts of preparedness!

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Oh this should be very interesting indeed. You really chose a good time for this challenge. I have been feeling poorly the last two months and we have lived on our food storage because I didn't go anywhere but to church. Thirty more days of food storage meals will be a piece of cake. Thank you for this challenge. You are right now is the best time to test how prepared we really are. Good luck to everyone!

I'm away from home for another two days, but when I get home I'll start on this. I anticipate missing my fresh vegtables and flavored coffee creamers, but I think that this is a great idea. It is also great for the kids, more baking, and opportunities for them to help in the kitchen, not to mention healthier. The garden is growing and maybe they'll be some fresh lettuce and peas, but not much else. I like the idea of finding other areas missing or lacking in my prepardness efforts.

Count me in Kellene. I took the 14 day challenge last year, and really missed my ice cream after 7 days when it was all gone, as I am low carbing it right now and don't have any in the house it should be no problem this time. The garden is producing well so fresh veggies aren't a problem. Have lots of dried from last year and I just added two more packages of TP I bought the day before to the Huge stack I already have, so let the games begin.

I'm going to give it a shot as well. Does getting fresh produce from BB that i coordinate in my town count? This is an excellent challenge.

Preparedness Pro's picture

As I shared in the article, I'm still going to purchase things but 1) they have to be at least 75% off or better, and 2) I can NOT use them to survive this 30 day challenge. What you do with this is up to you. :-)
Good luck everyone!! The first step is a doozey!

Count me in!

Well Kellene, this will be no big deal as I've been living off my storage for more that 4 months without going to a store for anything! Still have a ton of food left.

Miss fresh veggies the most. Find I have to force myself to make bread (have grinder and bosch). Make excuses. Even though I know how, it gets old having to make every single thing from scratch.

Have not purchased store milk in over a year. Only use powdered (which I love).

It is incredibly satisfying knowing that if need be. I would be just fine without stepping out of my house for anything for over a year. Although by then I might be mad from lack of human contact! ha.

A thought- I am re-reading a lot of older magazines and all my cookbooks constantly. Make sure you have a lot of good reading material available.


Well we are in hurricane season here so we hope we are prepared....lets roll!

This is a faboo idea and try to do it cold. As Kellene say's "Emergencies never announce themselves". I did this last year because of a big vet bill. 2 months no shopping and living off storage not just the pantry rotation. I really missed my snacks. I'll be with you in spirit but I'm restocking fresh meats and have purchases I have planned for a month. I got some real good sale prices. Brisket has gone on sale!!

Great stuff! We already did this no spend month last year in Feb. 2009. We sure learned a LOT! And so that's what we've already been doing pretty much for the past 9 months since my hubby was laid off. It's all food storage. Thank goodness we had (have) it.

We are going to do this with just a few adjustments. I have a coworker who I get fresh eggs from every Monday -12 for $2, and since this is a local purchase I'm going to continue this (I TOTALLY believe in supporting our local economy). Since I just took the couponing class on Saturday, I'm going to purchase the items I need to set up my notebook. The only other change I'm making is purchasing the extra calorie foods my son (who has cystic fibrosis) will need to make his calorie intake, but I'm using coupons for a lot of that stuff, but I hope to not have to as I'm going to be making a lot of homemade items for him to snack on.

Penny I do like to bake, but cooking in the oven and heating it up in summer is what I hate. I have to bake some bread so I'll get 'er done., but I'm looking at some artisan and flat breats I may be able to do on the Grill or BBQ on a stone. I'm still saving my pennies for a solar oven for the future.
Huzzah, I think I am finally getting a biscuits done right. Corn tortillas are ok but my flour ones still need work. Taste is okay just a bit to thick. I'm sure it's just a matter of practice and getting the "feel" of when it's done right. I'm making progress.

We did do the challenge...had 3 sets of house quests, one funeral supper to prepare, refridge, faucet and dishwasher were out for 3 weeks during the month, and it was wonderful. We learned:
there has to be variety that my husband will eat
food became nutrient instead of entertainment
fresh fruits/veggies were a challenge, but our lmeager garden did produce
6 green beans at a time
we did not run out of food, plenty of eggs and butter in the other two fridges in the house


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