Today we are interviewing QuietmaninWV, he is a highly regarded member of our community who contributed the most popular article on our site Candle making for and by the complete Idiot. Once again he is willing to help others out by sharing his story with us.
How long have you been prepping?
Homesteading/Prepping most of my life, my Mother was a homesteader and Prepper.
Was there a specific event or reason that lead you to realize that you should begin prepping?
I have been a Homesteader/Prepper most of my life but the first term of our current political administration caused me to step it up a notch.
The continuous downward spiral of our society, Morally, Economically and structurally should be enough to make anyone want to be prepared to be self sufficient.
Are you located in an Urban or country setting? Are you planning on bugging out or bugging in?
We live in a very rural area. Its 20 miles to the nearest small town and 40 miles to the nearest (small) city. Our closest neighbor lives about 3/4 of a mile down the road. We are planning on bugging in if at all possible, there’s no place like home.
How did prepping change your lifestyle?
We have made a few changes in our farming to help us be better prepared and more self sufficient. We have started growing all NON GMO Heirloom plants in our garden this year so we can replenish our seed stock every year as opposed to buying live plants. Not much of a change was necessary other than planing a bit ahead of time and starting seeds. We can and store a large amount of food from our garden every year.
We also raise livestock on our small farm, all the animals we have can be raised free range if there comes a time when feed is no longer available. We have Sheep, Goats and Chickens. They can provide us with eggs, milk,wool, leather and meat when necessary. They are all very easy to breed with short term pregnancies to replenish the population.
Do you have a bunker or underground shelter?
No bunker or underground shelter until we hit the Lottery….LOL
In a SHTF situation do you plan on working with a group or independently?
I feel that being independent will be absolutely necessary at times, but if we are going to try and re-establish a society working with others will be necessary, no matter how many skills you have there will always be things you need others for.
What are some of the biggest mistakes you made that beginner preppers should avoid?
Most people get caught up in the paranoia and fear and start throwing money around without doing research first, If you think you cant live without something research it and think long and hard before spending you money on something that may turn out to be worthless in a real SHTF situation.
The most important thing you can have in your preps is a extra large bucket of Common Sense. Gain knowledge and learn new skills which cost almost nothing the practice what you have learned, everything from fire building to radio repair, educate yourself.
Knowledge is Power
Are you married? If so please have your spouse answer this next question
What was your reaction when your spouse stated that they wanted to start prepping? Do you support his/her decision? How do you participate?
I thought he was crazy until the prices of everything started going up and I started paying attention to the way the economy was going, so I finally told my husband that he is right we need to start prepping, I participate by helping him get stuff sealed and buying extra stuff just to store away.
I’m adding this in because she doesn’t give herself enough credit for all she does.
In the past few years my “City Girl” wife has learned to can almost anything, she also does most of the work with our animals and works in our garden with the kids all summer long while I’m at work, and this year she got her first deer to help provide food for our family.
She is Remarkable.
Do you have children? How do they feel about your preps? Do they participate? If so how? If they were hesitant at first how did you get them to come on-board?
Our children don’t know it but they are also preppers (Shhhhh don’t tell them)
We have a small farm and spend a lot of time working together as a family to get things done, they have learned how to raise a garden, raise and butcher livestock and wild game, they all know how to hunt, fish and gather wild food in the woods,build fires and make shelters.
Where we live this is not called prepping its called growing up in the country. We all work together when it comes to canning and storing food and our family projects range from gathering wild mushrooms to building small barns for our animals. Food storage to them is having garden vegetables all winter or having the food you need when we are flooded or snowed in for a few days.
If you want to get your kids involved in prepping make it fun. When doing food storage get some hard candies and let them seal them up in mylar and label the bag so they have their own little prep, let them pick out a few travel games or books (MadLibs are fun at any age) to put in a bucket or B.O.B so they have something special. My daughter really enjoyed our candle making and loves making things with paracord, if you can start them out with things they enjoy the rest will follow
Teach Your Children Well
Do you tell your friends and family that you are a ‘prepper’? How do they usually react?
We don’t really advertise that we are preppers and in our neck of the woods most people have a pantry with supplies “just in case”.
My mother was a Homesteader/prepper and she tried to teach all of us to grow and preserve our own food and be as self sufficient as possible so when it comes to my family no one is surprised at the way we live ,however I am the only child who lives this way and I think my sisters may be a bit envious of our “simple” lifestyle and they know if TSHTF they will be more than welcome in our home.
What if nothing happens? Would you consider all your prepping a waste of time and money?
I pray everyday that the world will change for the better and my children can live in a peaceful society, but I am a realist.
The food you have stored will always be rotated so it should never go to waste and its also nice to have around when you have a friend or neighbor in desperate need, the supplies you have can be used for many things besides the end of the world. The biggest thing we do is learn and teach each other new things, Teaching my kids new skills or taking a long walk in the woods gathering food , going fishing, or going hunting and spending time with my wife and children is priceless and could never be considered a waste of time.
What advice would you give a newbie prepper?
Practice, Practice. Practice.
Make you plans and follow through with it, you need to practice any new skills you want to learn and don’t get discouraged.
Take your time and research everything you want to do and use you head when it comes to spending money, you don’t have to get everything done at once, we live on a very limited budget and it took us a long time to get the items we do have , be patient and remain focused on your goals.
What is one item that you believe most other preppers overlook?
I imagine that one thing is different for everyone, take care of your basic needs first and look before you leap.
Is there anything else you want to share with everyone?
Always remember that there is no substitute for hands on training no matter what the task and research and learning new skills is more valuable than any item you can purchase.
I can not stress this enough, educate yourself.
KNOWLEDGE is POWER
I want to thank QuietmaninWV, for all he has contributed to this community and for sharing his story with us!