As with all of the other suggestions in this series, they’re meant to be done with the whole family. Don’t feel overwhelmed. You don’t have to do all of these at once. Try one or two each weekend over the summer.
How long has it been since you put your bug out bags together? If it’s been a few months, it’s a good idea to dump out everyone’s bags then repack them. Make sure the clothes still fit, especially for growing children.
Test batteries to see if they’re still good. If not, replace them. If they’re somewhat low, use them up in other things around the house, such as radios, toys, and such.
Check food items to see if they’re still edible. You shouldn’t have to worry about long term storage items, unless it’s really, really been a long time since you’ve looked things over.
In fact, check for anything that’s outdated and replace it. You might even think of something else to include that you don’t have in your bags already.
Buy, rent, or borrow an item and take a day to teach the whole family how to use it. items may include a compass, metal detector, GPS, and so on.
When you think about it, there’s always something new to learn or discover when you’re making survival preparations and acquiring new skills. Each new experience can be its own little adventure.
Think back to your younger days and help your kids build a fort in the back woods, the back yard, or even in their bedroom. Put up a makeshift tent for shelter.
For that matter, if you have camping tents, take time to get reacquainted with how to put them up. Then, why not camp out in the yard overnight?
That leads into this next one, though you don’t already have to be camped out to do it. Make a campfire, tell stories, and make S’mores. This should teach a number of lessons, such as how to make a fire, how to share information through story telling, and how to cook over a fire. This would be a good time to put your Dutch oven to good use.
Put together a communications plan and test it out. The first thing you’ll want to do is determine what methods you would use. You may want to experiment with several ways to communicate, such as cell phones, walkie talkies, Family Radio Service handheld radios, CB, or even get amateur radio licenses for each of you.
What if the Internet is down or electricity is out? You might need to use a runner to connect through various emergency contacts to relay messages. Think of different scenarios and consider what you’d have to do to keep in touch with one another or with family and friends. When you’ve chosen a method to try one weekend, put people in different locations to test it out.
That’s enough to chew on for now. Survival situations offer their own tests.
Have a happy and safe Fourth of July holiday weekend.
Find more practical family preparedness tips in the Kindle booklet Prepping With Your Family.