Friday, July 3, 2020

Motherly Advice...a tumultuous world...


We are living in the strangest of times, aren't we? I've certainly never seen the likes of it and I happily entered my seventh decade earlier this year. Things are topsy-turvy in ways not seen before in my lifetime.

Husband and I have had some very serious discussions over the last two nights.

You see, three nights ago, our Prime Minister announced an increase in Defence spending. In making this announcement, he indicated that 'the world is now a much more dangerous place', and that we may, at some point in the future, be called upon to defend our borders. An alarming thought, right?

Now, my Maternal Grandparents were European, and lived through two World Wars, and the Great Depression. They immigrated here post-War with my Mother who was just 7 years old at the time. Mum spoke of this often, talking about the challenges they faced, and used her skills to raise seven children alone. Certainly I absorbed many of my homemaking skills from Mum and Nanna, as they just 'knew' this stuff. They hadn't chosen to take sewing, or embroidery or knitting or baking or mending up as a hobby. These were necessary day to day life skills.

I have shared through my blog here for many years, that I try to learn a new skill each year. Over the last decade, I have taught myself preserving, sewing, embroidery (which can also be used for mending and patching), soap making, dehydrating foods, using unusual ingredients such as dried legumes or plants indigenous to our area, or areas near us, making our own pasta, growing food, learning about easy to grow vegetables, and saving seeds, and foraging, including using what we see as 'weeds', like dandelion and nettle.

Husband is an able carpenter and builder, and is adept at solving all kinds of fix-it handyman type problems.

Mostly, then, we are okay in that department.

Our discussions mostly revolved around what we would do if we ever had to evacuate our home for an extended period. We live quite close to a military base, which you'd think should be a source of comfort, but it's really not. Maybe that's not the safest place to be? We talked this through pragmatically and calmly, and we now have The Plan. IF things really did go horribly pear-shaped in our part of the world, we know what we would do. We also know what skills we need to refine and hone, and what new skills we need to add to our toolbox. We will discuss this with family, so that they know ahead of time, what The Plan is, and how they need to enact it. We may even ask them to add some new skills to their own toolboxes.

How would you live in a world where suddenly you could only eat what you could catch or grow yourself? Where essentials were scarce or non-existent? Where you had to be self-reliant for medical care of all kinds? Where the only tools at your disposal were the type that don't need electricity or fuels of other kinds to power them? We're not just talking about camping skills. We're talking survival skills.

This thinking may seem over-the-top, but we decided we'd rather have The Plan, and the skills to act upon it, than not. It does no harm to know these things, and gives us the peace of mind and security, to know we could keep ourselves and our loved ones safe for an extended period, should the need arise.

What do you think? Could you go into Survival Mode and cope for a long time? Months? Years?

It's an interesting thought in the abstract, isn't it?

Don't wait until it's no longer an abstract thought, to act.

That's my advice....

...Mimi...

13 comments:

  1. Food for thought, right.
    My country house is about having a level of sustainability. Eggs and lettuce and all the coriander I want, fruit trees and water tanks everywhere. Solar panels. The plumber joked and said that I just spent thousands for dollars to save about $50 worth of water... But I don't think water will always be safe, or a given. My other friend raises animals for the table. We joke, sort of, that after the apocalypse, the horde will be desperate for her sustainable ways and being unprepared, may use force... And how to deal with that. It all sounds very prepper, I know, but when the toilet paper debacle of recent times, makes you wonder about the notion of scarcity and how that inspires fear, then what else follows.
    Enjoy the peace we have.

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    1. Michelle you are so wise to have already given this event some thought. I don't think it's foolish to be prepared at all. I love your preparedness and your clever,emerging community. Those who prepare wisely will prevail, that's for sure. Mimi xxx

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  2. Mimi, I think we would survive here for a while. I was born not long after WW2 ended and remember some of the conversations around that time about where people were going to go to meet as invasion seemed to be imminent. Thankfully that never happened but I know that people had more survival skills then than now. Learning a new skill every year is very wise.

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    1. I agree Chel. I think mostly we are well placed geographically, however I prefer to anticipate a worst case scenario and prepare accordingly. You are well ahead of the pack. Mimi xxx

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  3. I think this is a great post. Wouldn't it be better to be "over-prepared" than not prepared enough or not at all? And it doesn't have to be from an apocalypse, how often do we have bad storms and other weather. One Summer not that long ago, we were without power for two weeks from a bad storm that caused a "cascade" effect. I think learning new skills is great and anything we can do, large or small is always in our best interest.

    I also think it's important to talk to family about this so everyone is on the same page and knows what the plan is and what is expected. Thanks for this post.

    Darlene

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    1. Exactly Darlene. There's no harm in it, and potentially, great benefit. Some may laugh, but I'd rather be prepared than not. Mimi

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  4. Dear Mimi, I think it is really good that you and your husband can work together on this and also tell the family. Hopefully that sparks them considering these things too. I am in the same situation... I can prepare so much for the family and Grandchildren but I have to talk to the girls and get them to do what they can to have good supplies and plans. So far that has gone reasonably well but I keep reminding them to get ahead and tip them off as I can. This makes more households better off and hopefully we would all be able to help each other. It is also wise to look around as you have. I have known people who live near nuclear facilities and think nothing of it where I would be OMG. But we grow used to our environment and maybe dont assess it objectively. This is a really important point! Hard to do but we need to have our eyes open. We need to revive and link to you wholesome and economical menu plans, recipes and tips. More will be listening and needing this kind of practical help that you are so good with. With love Annabel.xxx

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    1. Dear Annabel, it just makes sense to me at this time, as I know it does to you. You are well ahead of me in many respects, but our plan includes one for shelter, growing of produce, water accessibility, and alternative power sources, and Husband is a builder with access to many other skilled tradespeople who are on board as well. It truly will be a village effort. Better prepared than not, right! Love, Mimi xxx

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  5. You've given me something to think about.
    Thank you for exhorting us about preparing for the future. For the first time in our marriage (over 30 years), we found this past month that we have enough money to begin actually saving. My husband and I agree that part of this saving needs to be building our pantry. I need to figure out what would be best for us to stock up on. Our nutritional needs are different because of some health problems from eating a high carb diet (cheap food) for years.

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    1. Dear Laura, congratulations on being in a position to save. This is good progress. I think finding ways to eat inexpensively and healthfully is always challenging. We are in this together. Let's take a communal approach and help one another. Mimi xxx

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  6. Gosh, this post has made me think! Learning new skills is always a good idea, as is the ability to think outside the box. We weathered recent food shortages because we had a good stock of food and we were willing to exchange X for Y when it came to what we were prepared to eat. However we are in the UK, so not somewhere with a lot of wilderness to take refuge in if the worse were to happen and, as the recent 'invasion' of country areas by inconsiderate city-dwellers showed, any movement of people from urban areas would be likely to cause us untold problems. I think the only thing we could do in such a case would be to 'Keep Calm and Carry On', a slogan that was thought up to reassure the population in case of invasion during WWII and which seems increasingly relevant today. We certainly live in 'interesting' times.

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    1. This is an interesting take on things Tracy. Yes things would certainly be different for you in the UK. Your citizens have weathered much, and preparedness may take very different forms for you, and clearly you've given that some thought. Interesting times indeed. Mimi

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I love hearing from you! I always respond to comments, so don't be shy! Mimi xxx