Preparedness Series: Beyond The Emergency Fund


When it comes to you and your family, there is always something more that you could be doing to ensure your safety and long-term survival. It is this reason on why I decided to share with you my Preparedness Series which will be a collection of preparation and survival items based on the 10+ categories identified below.

One of the very first things you should have accomplished prior to stockpiling survival items is creating an emergency fund. If you haven’t, please review my post How To Create A $1,000 Emergency Fund Using Pocket Change. Within a year, you should have a small emergency fund that can help your family overcome the small emergencies that always tend to pop up unexpectedly.

Once you have your emergency fund squared away and you have started increasing your retirement savings rate, there are other areas that you should consider in your family’s emergency preparedness plans. In the event of a short to long term disaster or catastrophic event, it would be beneficial if you can take comfort in knowing that you have done some preparation. Ask yourself this:

Are you and your family able to survive for 3 days, 3 weeks, 3 months, or 3 years in the event of a disaster?

We can all remember the Texas Freeze of early 2021 or the food lines that were a result of businesses being shuttered during the COVID pandemic. But, what about the California wildfires, the Florida hurricanes, and the Michigan blackout of 2003.

In many cases, those that were impacted were only without for a few days or weeks (not taking into account the loss of life).

What would be your family circumstance if something more catastrophic happened? Maybe the power grid goes out, a prolonged economic collapse, or worse? Do you remember September 11th when a housing boom and bust resulted in 10 million Americans losing their homes.

Wouldn’t it be sound advice to ensure that you have some preparations to withstand such hardships? This could include extra food or water in your long-term storage. We don’t have to be Doomsday Preppers to stockpile a few necessities to ensure that we can take care of our loved ones.

Over the years, my family has decided that we should start gathering some essentials to ensure the safety and security of our family. I have NOT purchased all of the items that I will reference below; however, I have collected a pretty comprehensive list (200+ items) over the years and I thought I would share it with you if you felt it was important for you and your family to be a little more prepared beyond the Emergency Fund.

This doesn’t have to be the case of The Walking Dead or some grand end-of-the-world apocalypse. If you cannot get your mind wrapped around a long-term catastrophe, I included three fictional book series below that I thoroughly enjoyed.

Making the Preparations

My family and I have made some preparations. We haven’t gone full-scale Doomsday Prepper; however, we believe it is very reasonable to look at our food, water, first aid, and family protection as a first line of safety and preparation. As such, over the years I have compiled a number of resources that may be of interest to you and your family. Since there are over 200+ items listed, I’m going to break them down into various categories and I want you to think of them through the following priority lens:

  • Priority A – Extremely Important – Purchase Immediately
  • Priority B – Important – But, you won’t die within 30 days without it
  • Priority C – Somewhat Important – If you are caught without these items, you can probably get them from your dead, unprepared neighbor through house foraging

I will not be able to tell you how to classify each of the individual items within each category that is listed below in the preparation resources. As an example, I may view Emergency Seeds for a potential garden as Priority A where you may think they are Priority C. You will have to make that determination for yourself and for your family. What I do want to do is to provide various items that I’ve either collected myself or have made notes over the years from the various survival websites, books, and resources.

Preparation Resources

Click on the links below to review a list of recommended items you may want to consider for your long-term preparation plans.

Food – Details Coming Soon – Food is essential and we’ll cover items such as long-term storage, can goods rotation systems, and various staples such as flour, beans, etc.

Water Preparation – More important than food is water. We’ll cover items to help ensure that you have your water scenarios covered in the event of a prolonged disaster.

Fire Preparation – Resources to help ensure that you have the ability to make fire which would be needed for cooking, warmth, etc.

Protection – Details Coming Soon – Some thoughts on protecting you and your family. We won’t go in-depth on this topic as we are a Personal Finance site; however, we want to ensure that we provide some thoughts on home and personal protection.

First Aid – Details Coming Soon – You’ll definitely want to ensure you have some basic medical supplies and kits available for you and your family.

Power – Details Coming Soon – We’ll cover various power options that will help you get by for a few days if the power goes out in your area.

Communication – Details Coming Soon – We’ll ensure that you have some of the basic items covered to either receive outside communications (i.e. weather, alerts) or communicating with your family.

Sleep – Details Coming Soon – We will provide some ideas for you to ensure you have some basic items covered in the event of a disaster impacting your sleep arrangements.

Navigation – Details Coming Soon – We will go back to some of the basics on navigational items (i.e. compass, maps, etc.).

Hygiene – Details Coming Soon – We’ll provide a list of personal care and hygiene items that you should include to cover you for a few days, weeks, or months.

General – Details Coming Soon – If the items don’t neatly fit into one of the above sections, we’ll list it here. We’ll also list clothing items to consider in the general section as well as money/cash considerations.

Books – Details Coming Soon – A few book recommendations such as edible plants, basic survival 101, etc. that may be of value to have in print just in case there is a power or internet outage that lasts for an extended period of time.

Extreme Survival – Details Coming Soon – We’ll include a bonus section on extreme survival. We won’t go in-depth, but we’ll provide some thought provoking items in this section.

Fictional Books Series Recommendations

In addition to the above survival type books I have shared in the above books section, I thought I would provide three fictional series that I thought were fantastic. The three different authors each provide an interesting perspective on their potential view if we were faced with a prolonged catastrophe.

I’ll provide the links to the first book in each of the series. If you pick them up, I hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoyed reading through them. I would love to hear your feedback.

The Restoration Collection – Terri Blackstock provides a Christian perspective in this four book series: 1) Last Light, 2) Night Light, 3) True Light, and 4) Dawn’s Light. This is a series that both my wife and my mother enjoyed as well.

Going Home” Series – A. American currently has ten fictional novels under the Survivalist Series. I have currently read through seven of the ten (I stopped when I caught up and was waiting on the eighth book to be released. I have yet to pick up the remaining 3 currently in the series).

One Second After – William Forstchen’s fictional novel was the very first book I read in any survivalist series. It is the first book that got me to think beyond the traditional emergency savings and expanded my thinking into all of the other areas such as food, water, protection, first aid, etc. This is the book that started the foundational journey to be a little more prepared to ensure the safety and security of my family.

There are a total of 3 books in the series. I have yet to read the other two: One Year After and The Final Day.

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