It’s Getting Real: What To Advise Family & Friends

Welcome to this week’s newsletter, brought to you by the Survive In Place Urban Survival Course.  The first, and still best, guide to get you prepared to survive short and medium term disasters in your current home, whether it’s because of a terrorist attack, natural disaster, or pandemic.  To learn more, go >HERE< now.

And, if you need the fastest possible way to get prepared for short to medium disasters, you need the Fastest Way To Prepare Course.

Have you noticed a certain change of attitude with family members and friends with regard to  prepping?  Are you suddenly being asked for advice about food and water storage, prep goods, self defense and medical supplies?

I’ve got to say, I was surprised when the sale of Ebola “gear” started flying off the shelves.  Tyvek suits, N-95 and N-100 masks, protective goggles and nitrile gloves are getting harder and harder to find.

Of course, all the press about Ebola is hard to ignore, but even so, the fact that people are shelling out hard cash to prep for a possible outbreak points to the fact that many are waking from their stupor.

If this sudden interest in self-preservation grows legs and moves from reaction to action, there will be fewer desperate for a way to survive.  That’s a good thing.

So, what do you advise someone who has woken up to the reality that meals on wheels won’t be knocking on their door three times a day with a hot meal and their continued health may be left to them to figure out?  Today’s post is a compilation of what will be needed for self-sufficiency. It isn’t everything.  That would take a book.  but it covers a lot of the necessities.  Today’s post is long.  But better to have a list to hand a budding prepper than to spend weeks explaining everything.

Build Your Medical Supplies: Just The Basics

Basic Medical supplies are another must.  But basic doesn’t really cut it while Ebola becomes a growing reality.  The list below is from a previous post. Level 2 and 3 medical supplies are included in the original post.

  • 4inch X 4inch Sterile Gauze Pads
  • Band Aids—Get plenty in assorted sizes!
  • Non-Adherent Sterile Pads (Both Sterile to protect wounds and larger to wrap wounds)
  • Isopropyl Alcohol
  • Hydrogen Peroxide (For cleaning wounds and can be used as a gargle for tooth abscess)
  • Bragg Apple Cider Vinegar (Yeast infection, stomach upset and more)
  • Ibuprofen (Fever reducer & helps to control inflammation)
  • Aspirin
  • Children’s Fever Reducer
  • Tylenol (Fever reducer)
  • Benadryl (Treatment for nausea, insomnia, allergy)
  • Penlight Flashlight (To check for sore throat & pupil dilation with head trauma)
  • Surgical Tape
  • Feminine Pads (Can also be used as economical bandaging for larger wounds)
  • Mucinex (Helps reduce upper respiratory infection & the chance of pneumonia)
  • Triple Antibiotic Ointment (Helps to control infection of wounds)
  • Hydrocortisone Cream (For treatment of rashes, poison oak and poison ivy, etc.)
  • Butt Paste (Treatment for chafing)
  • Non-latex Examination Gloves (Helps to avoid cross-contamination)
  • Instant Cold Packs (Used for relief of sprains)
  • Thermometer–Both Adult and Children
  • Ace Wraps

Ebola Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) & An Important Update

  • Full face respirator

  • Tyvek coveralls with hood

  • Nitrile gloves

  • Disposable shoe covers

  • Disposable hair nets

  • Duct tape to secure gloves

  • Bleach or hydrogen peroxide & spray bottle to sterilize PPE and contaminated surfaces

Food: Just The Basics–1 Year Supply Per Person

Someone new to food storage may be overwhelmed by the amount of food required for a one year supply.  But it can be built upon, one month at a time. The goal of a one years food supply provides time for a garden to begin to produce.

No matter what is recommended on a food calculator, selections should be made based upon what a person or a family will actually eat.

Click Here for my favorite food storage calculator.  What I love about this particular calculator is it’s the only one I’ve been able to find that includes fruits and vegetables.

Over time, extras can be added to food storage for variety.  For my large family group, I have added ingredients to make pizza, Mexican, and Italian meals and seafood dishes.  They will only be served a few times a week (I’m NOT Rockefeller), but by changing up meal times, it avoids Appetite Fatigue which can occur when eating the same or similar meals day after day.  Children and the elderly are most susceptible to appetite fatigue, and it can lead to their choosing to go hungry.

Add comfort foods, canned meat, chicken and fish as money allows.

Caloric requirements will be higher in a SHTF scenario because of the increased workload we’ll be faced with.  For this reason, purchasing items like tuna or sardines packed in oil rather than water is advised.

One Year Food Storage-Per Person

  • Cornmeal or Whole Corn (whole corn can be ground for cornmeal)-25 lbs.

  • Flour-20 lbs.

  • Oats, Rolled-25 lbs.

  • Pasta-25 lbs.

  • Rice, White (brown has a shorter shelf life)-50 lbs.

  • Wheat-150 lbs.

  • Beans (Buy a variety-including split peas & lentils)-60 lbs.

  • Fruit (*dehydrated, *freeze-dried, canned or fresh)-185 lbs.

  • Vegetables (*dehydrated, *freeze-dried, canned or fresh)-185 lbs.

  • Peanut Butter-4 lbs.

  • Shortening-4 lbs.

  • Mayonnaise (Mayo packets can be purchased at restaurant suppliers)-2 quarts

  • Cooking Oil- 2 gallons

  • Salad Dressing (bottled or dry packet)-1 quart

  • Powdered Milk-60 lbs.

  • Canned Milk-12 lbs.

  • Powdered/*Fresh eggs & *Cheese-13 lbs.

  • Honey-3 lbs.

  • Sugar-40 lbs.

  • Brown Sugar-3 lbs.

  • Molasses-1 lb.

  • Corn Syrup-3 lbs.

  • Jam/Jelly-3 lbs.

  • Powdered Fruit Drink-6 lbs.

  • Baking Powder-1 lb.

  • Baking Soda-1 lb.

  • Yeast-.5 lb.

  • *Salt-5 lbs.

  • Vinegar-.5 lbs.

  • Tuna Fish-60 cans

  • *Water-14 gallons

* The 185 pounds suggested for fruit and vegetables will need to be calculated for dehydrated and freeze-dried.

* If you’re interested in preserving eggs, unrefrigerated,  check out this previous post Store Eggs Long-Term Without Refrigeration!

* To store cheese without refrigeration, check out the post Is Survival REALLY survival Without Cheese and Homemade Bread?

* There’s NO such thing as storing too much salt.  It has many uses, not the least of which is its bartering leverage.

* The 14 gallons of water included in the basic food list is a bare minimum for a two week storage.  It is preferable to store much more!

Note: Formula and baby food should be added to the basic food list when applicable.

Top 50 Must-Haves

The “must-haves” listed below came from a previous post, Top 50 Preparedness Items (and why).  I’ve removed the descriptors to keep today’s post manageable, but you may want to read the original.

Now when you’re asked, “Where do I start?” you can point them here.  It’ll save hours of your time.

1. Water Purifier

2. Water Containers

3. Wood Matches, Flint-Style Fire Starter Kit & Plenty of Matches

4. Buckets

5. Bleach or Hypochlorite Granules

6. Flashlight, Headlamp

7. Toilet Paper

8. Alternative Cooking Device

9. Dutch Oven

10. Solar Oven

11. Manual Wheat Grinder

12. Heavy-Duty Pull Cart

13. Hatchet, Ax, and Maul

14. Tree-Felling Ax

15. Rope

16. Tarps

17. Manual Can Opener(s)

18. Heirloom Garden Seed

19. Garden Tools: Gloves, Shovel, Spade, Hoe, Rake, Spading Fork, Hand Fork, Pruners, Pick Ax

20. Wheelbarrow

21. Canning Supplies

22. Wash Tub, Clothes Pens, Hand Agitator & Wringer Mop Bucket

23. Emergency Long-Burning Candles

24. Oil Lamps, Replacement Wicks, Replacement Chimneys

25. ABC Fire Extinguisher

26. Board Games & Cards

27. Children’s Crafts & Activities, if applicable

28. Camp Toilet

29. Wood-Burning Heat Stove, if applicable

30. Fuel: Wood, Propane, Gasoline, Propane, Diesel

31. Heavy-Mil Plastic Sheeting

32. Basic Tools & Misc: Work Gloves, Hammer, Screwdrivers (assorted sizes), Philips Screwdrivers (assorted sizes), Allen Wrench set (both American and metric), Pliers (assorted sizes), Plumbers Wrench, Crow Bar, Key-Hole Saw (to cut holes when there is no power), Tape Measure, T-Square, Wood Miter Box, Wire, Bungee Cords (assorted), Hand Saw, Nuts, Washers, Nails, Screws, Duct Tape.

33. Basic Auto-Repair Tools

34. Plywood & 2 X 4’s

35. Snake Bite Kit

36. Wind-Up or Solar Powered Radio

37. Two-Way Radios

38. NiMH Rechargeable Batteries & Solar Charger

39. Swiss Army Knife

40. Hunting Knife

41. Binoculars

42. Weapons

43. Ammo

44. Fishing Gear

45. Topographical Maps

46. Compass

47. Backpack

48. Camp Gear: Tent, Sleeping Bag, Folding Shovel, Tarp, Camp Cookware & Dishes, Hikers Water Purifier, Water Bottle/Canteen, Backpack w/ Survival Essentials.

49. Reference Books: Gardening, Seed-Saving, First Aid, Self-Defense, Wilderness Survival, Food Dehydration, Food Storage-Related Cookbooks, Dutch Oven Cookbooks, and Meat Curing

50. Alternative Transportation: Bicycle

Bathing, Hygiene  & Laundry Products

This final check-list are basic must-haves from a recent post, Keeping It Clean.

Bathing & Hygiene Products

  • Body Soap
  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste
  • Dental Floss
  • Shampoo
  • Cream Rinse
  • Body Lotion
  • Moisturizer
  • Razor
  • Shaving Cream
  • Washtub for Laundry & Bathing
  • Camp Toilet/Materials to Build an Outhouse


  • Laundry Soap*
  • Clothes Line
  • Clothespins
  • Washboard or Manual Agitator (Check Lehmans & Amazon)
  • Washtub (see above)
  • Wringer-Style Mop Pail/Antique Wringer-Washing Machine/Manual Clothes Wringer

*Here’s an excellent solution to keep down the cost of laundry soap and limited storage space–visit the Duggar’s Favorite Recipes: Homemade Liquid Laundry Soap.

For the fastest, simplest, and most inexpensive way to get prepared for a short to medium term disaster in 72 hours or less, you want to check out the Fastest Way To Prepare course by going >Here<

Do you have friends or loved ones who are waking up and are in need of this compilation of prepping must-haves?  Do you have any recommendations to add?  Please sound off by commenting below.  

God bless and stay safe,

David Morris and Survival Diva




  1. Great Grey says:

    One year of some foods won’t cut it, if you’ve missed the planting window for next year’s crop. For winter wheat it could be 18 months or more before the next harvest. Then there’s crop failure or storm damage, many a time a farmer has lost a crop the night before harvest, so while you may have a good growing season, until it is stored you can’t count on it.

  2. Excellent list! I will be using this in the next few weeks to make sure we are covering all the bases we can. Thank you!

  3. Back in 2009 I dried some heirloom Brandywine tomatoe, pumpkin, watermelon and cucumber seeds. Put them in small snack size bags and sealed them. Then put them into small canning jars and tightened the lid and put them in cabinet over my stove. Much to my surprise in 2014. I sprouted them betweem moist paper towels and I sprayed often with water to keep them moist. Then moved them to flats, them to small pots, then gave them to different people for their gardens. Some people put them in the garbage..?, some people planted them along with what they bought at the seed store. Some people actually appreciated them!

    Have dried and saved some seeds this year the same way.

  4. A put in a good supply of chicken bullion and beef of course. You can fix cream of chicken soup easily by fixing two cups of bullion and whisk in powdered milk. It is really good!

  5. Joseph-Lee Morehouse says:

    Thank you for the article.
    Few of my friends are talking about the Ebola virus and they are blaming everybody for what happening including the U.S. government , the African governments and so on. They still think our government will still save them if the SHTF.A few even mention they will be at my door with there family if things get bad. I think it time too print out this article about getting prepared , along with a warning from me. My group could not hand any dead weight moving in with us. It sound cold ,we still need more like minded members that have useable skills – I would kill for somebody that knows how to make a steam engine or coil engine – it on my prep list.

    • Survival Diva says:

      Print out the lists and they either invest in their safety, or they don’t. Like you’ve said, dead weight will jeopardize the safety of the group: food, prep goods, water. Otherwise, where does it end? Would their family members and friends then be knocking on your door? The hardest thing is saying no to someone who is in need. But there are limits to what one person or one group can do. Hopefully, the people wanting “free lunch” will do what needs doing.

  6. Hi All, I have more of a question. Why are they saying only the 132 people on the plane are at risk from the Dallas nurse? Didnt she walk through 2 airports. I assume she went to the rest rooms, stood in lines, handed her IDs and tickets to the TSA agents and so on. Are there more at risk than the passengers on the airplane? thanks, Mark

  7. M. Tucker Brawner says:

    Excellent summary Diva.
    Here are a couple of my tricks:
    1. Staple storage – I wondered about the technique of storing 5 gallons of rice, beans, lentils, etc. in Mylar inside of 5 gallon sealed buckets. Once opened, contamination or spoilage could ruin a large amount. So I got a supply of 1 Qt. Mylar bags and matching oxygen absorbers. I put away small bags of stuff like beans and rice in these. Example: matching 3cups rice in one against 3 cups of beans in another. Finished collection goes into a Home Depot 5gal bucket with a Gamma lid. When almost full, I put in a 1/2 dozen 1 Qt. Ziplocs and a small size salt and pepper. Now, at worst, I only lose a cup or 2. Unused goes in the ZipLocs for short term storage. Bare-bones nutrition or bucket of side-dishs.

    2. Fuel Storage – I have 12 5gal plastic gas cans in my backyard toolshed. At any one time, all or 11 are full. When I get low in my car, I use the first one in line to hold me until a fill-up. Then I re-fill the empty and place it at the tail end of the rotation. Always close to 60 gallons and reasonably fresh. I keep a bottle of stabilizer on hand in case the SHTF and my rotation drops to infrequent. Also have 4 with marine gas rotated the same way for small boat. Those get a marine anti-alcohol preservative always.(Live on the coast and figure fishing, crabbing, shrimping to augment storage foods.)

    3. Reference Books – All important references, available as E-books are on my iPad. Bought a small, book sized solar charger for my GoBag. Two days of full sun will recharge the iPad if and when needed. No need to lug several heavy books if we take to the road.

    4. Medication Supplies – Need a year’s supply of constant use B/P, Arthritis, Diabetes meds? Ask PCP for a hard-copy Rx for a 90 day supply(“to save co-pays and cheaper for 3 month Rx”). Now go online and find a (reputable)Canadian or foreign pharmacy, check for your meds availability, open account, FAX the Rx, pay in full with credit card. Now take Rx to regular pharmacy and get it filled normally. Repeat 3-4 times and you will have your stash. Make sure to date the bottles to take oldest first. Don’t know if I would advise going beyond a year, but keep in mind that the expiration dates are usually arbitrary functions mandated by FDA and many meds will last far longer(ex: Motrin will last for many years past its date). If all you have left is a bottle that is out of date…well.
    Completely out? Alton & Alton have an extensive section on herbs and plants that can serve med functions in their book The Survival Medicine Handbook. Red Yeast Rice @ 1200mg/day functions like Zocor, Lipitor, Crestor for cholesterol. Cinnamon capsules can help keep blood glucose down. CoQ10 stimulates immune system and beneficial to heart. Vitamin D-3 would be needed if you “go to ground” from a Nuke attack. Same for Vitamin C. Cranberries, the juice, or pill concentrates are diuretic if you need one for B/P.
    Now the logical first option is simply explain to your Doc what you need and why…but if he refuses, and THEN you try the above, his suspicion may be high and you’ll get another refusal.

    Finito, ciao

    • Survival Diva says:

      M. Tucker Brawner

      You’ve done your homework : ) The reference books, though. . . keeping paperbacks of critical reference books like first aid and wild edible plants to keep in a go-bag wouldn’t hurt. If the sun doesn’t cooperate, you’ll have backup.

Speak Your Mind