Yes, I not only prep for economic hardship and disasters but I also prep (get ready) for other things too, like SUMMER! Prepping for the summer helps me save money, accomplish preparedness goals, and schedule things to look forward too. Summer can be the best season to develop self reliant skills for a couple of reasons: first there are more free class available to the public during the summer and second the warm weather draws many of us towards outdoor activities like camping or gardening. Below is a list of my summer preps that hopefully will give you some ideas so you can prep for a your perfect summer.
1. Beat the Heat with Meal Planning
It gets ridiculously hot in my home over the course of the summer due to big windows and no air conditioning. Cooking is the worst because it heats-up the house even more. Last year was much more bearable with some meal planning. We eat out far less by meal planning which saves us money! Before the weather gets to warm I come up with a summer meal plan. I started by making a list of cold dinner options:
Summer Rolls – Photo taken by Zoe Shuttleworth
Next I make a list of freezer meals, set a side a day for cooking, and fill-up my freezer while the weather is still nice. Because these meals are full cooked they just need to be warmed up in the microwave or toaster oven. The toaster oven does not warm up the house like an oven does, plus, I can also move it outside to warm-up the freezer meals on my back patio. As you can see in the picture below some of my freezer meals are in square baking tins (warm-up in oven) and other freezer meals are in single serving Glad Freezerware containers (warm-up in microwave). This is for convenience, the larger option is if we have unexpected company and need to feed 4 to 6 people. The smaller options feeds 1 person which works great for my husband’s work lunches or dinnertime. Below are some of my favorite freezer meal recipes:
Baking Tin (make a double batch, one for dinner and one for the freezer. Should be defrosted for best results.)
Glad Freezerware (make a double batch then place the left-overs into containers.)
Foodscaping is adding plants that grow food to your existing landscape. Foodscaping is a gaining popularity for people that don’t have a garden space. Many homes across American come with flower beds on automatic sprinklers in the front yard and a fully sodded backyard with not much room for an edible garden. If you want to try your hand at gardening before you rip out your perfectly sodded backyard add strawberries, herbs, potatoes, belle peppers, cabbage, and/or kale to your existing flower beds to begin developing your green thumb. I tried this last year with one strawberry plant and it worked out so much better than my other gardening attempts that I am excited to try other plants this year. This is a great month to start planting if you haven’t started already.
To learn more about foodscaping check-out Rosalind Creasy book Edible Landscaping.
3. Develop a Self Reliant Skill
Another way I prep for the summer is by checking out free or cheap community classes. In my local area nurseries, heath food stores, the preparedness store, sporting goods stores, the library, churches, adult school, museums, and fairs have cheap or even free classes. Community classes are a great way to learn about and develop self reliant skills. It’s also a great way to get to know your community a little better. I will be looking forward to classes called Totally Tomatoes, When the Lights Go Out, Growing and Cooking with Herbs, and more.
4. Complete a Prepper Project
My mantra this year seems to be “one step at a time” or “one project at a time”. I have a list of prepper projects I would like to do someday. One item on that list is a prepper’s cache. A Prepper’s Cache are survival supplies that are placed in a air tight container and buried in preparation of hard times. The summer seems like a perfect time to gather items, dig a hole, and create a map. I love the idea of buried treasure and time capsules so I’ll try to incorporate these themes into the cache as well. I’ll gather prepper stuff, monetary treasures, and some items with sentimental value. This is a great project to do with kids or a great date night activity. My goal deadline will be August for my birthday which will give me time to come up with a list, find the right container, and gather items.
5. Make Progress on Your Preppers Supplies Checklist
Summer is the best time to make some progress checking off items on your Preppers Supplies Checklist. My favorite places to hunt for deals are at moving sales and estate sales because of the quality of items that can be found. When people have garage sales they are usually purging themselves of unwanted items. I have found that moving or estate sales often offer valuable stuff that the owners just can’t take with them. Moving sales happen most often in warm weather months which is why I added it to my list of summertime activities. This year I am working on obtaining items on my Kitchen Supplies Checklist and Tools Checklist. The picture below is some of the great deals I got on some prepper items. I was also able to find a BBQ grill for 60% less than if I were to buy it brand new. Not only is it an off-grid cooking method I get to check off my list but it’s also another method to help keep the heat out of my kitchen this summer.
6. Develop A Survival Mindset
The books I enjoy reading are usually themed around survival. I believe surviving is a mindset so I’m intrigued by those that survive hardship or tragedy. I do not know what the future holds so knowing what preps I need is a guessing game, however, one prep that will be vital in any situation is developing a survival mindset. I am a huge fan because it allows me to listen to a book while I exercise, drive, or work on my to-do list. The best part is that the audible books can be played on most digital devices (like my smart phone) for $14.99 or less a book. The two books I have purchased to read this summer are Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer and Breaking Night: A Memoir of Forgiveness, Survival, and My Journey from Homeless to Harvard.