Since Debbie over at HappyDays asked about our storage and prep areas, I decided to make this a two-entry day.
Our basement is divided up rather strange. Origionally in the 1930's, our house was built as a basement home, not so different from what I grew up in, but a LOT smaller. The larger 16x22 foot room was the kitchen/dining/eating area and I can only assume also where they slept. The room next to it was laundry and storage, and the full bathroom was always there.(haf bath now since the tub wasn't re-plumbed with the rest of the house, I removed it in 2000) Sometime in the 40's, they added on another area, what is now the furnace room and our prep room. Neither of these rooms had doors on them when we moved in, and the prep room didn't even have a dividing wall, it was just open. I added a wall, built in desk & shelves, and put doors on both. For a short while it was Lisa's sewing room till she outgrew it, then it was our bedroom till the kids moved back home, then it was Adams room, and now its for prep and my own little space. I cut a door from inside that room into the rear of the furnace room and added another door and wall, this is more storage for prep items. The old living area is now Lisa's sewing & craft room.
The room is not really as organized as I would like it, but it does it's job. I have all my hunting and fishing gear in there, as well as camping gear and supplies. (I dont like taking chances of mice in the garage tearing at my tents or sleeping bags) My large 12 man tent is in an old navy footlocker, safe from critters or anything else. My 2 smaller dome tents are in sacks stored above it. Sleeping bags, pillows, and misc bedding items are in a large plastic tote right beside them. Inside the closet area are my lanterns, camp cookware, campstoves, heaters, white fuel, propane, oil lamps & lanterns, and lamp oil. In the same room, under the stairs are footlockers of misc camping/emergency gear and a closet bar of hunting and other camo clothing. This area stays dark and cool, so we also store our potatos and onions there.
Four desk shelves are lined with all of our books on survival, self sufficiency, gardening, hunting, fishing, map books, and almost every subject imaginable. The others are full of misc hunting and fishing gear. I have a tall metal cabinet along one wall that contains all of my knives, 1 good camp hatchet, knife sharpening tools/stones, batteries, rope, and larger first aid items that dont fit in my jammed-full industrial kit that hangs on the wall. Beside that is a simple 4 drawer filing cabinet full of notes, things copied from online, instruction manuals, and copies of magazines we get or have gotten in the past. Grit, Small Farm Journal, Mother Earth News, Backyard Poultry, Shooting Times, Countryside, and others that I can't remember at the moment, all full of great information that I refuse to throw away. I have a metal office desk in there too. It used to be where I had the old desktop computer, but now it's for me to sit and read or draw up plans for something or another.
In the center along one wall is a small fold up table. Its where I sit to clean guns or work on things too big for the desk, but it's also our wintertime hangout. We've spent many an evening there reading, talking, playing board games, planning next years garden, looking through wishbooks, or just enjoying the peace and quiet. Above this table is an oil cottage lamp hanging from the ceiling in case of power outage. We keep the house temp as low as possible to save on the gas bill, so we turn on a small electric heater, close the door, and enjoy a nice toasty warm place to get away. I keep the 2 camp cots open along the other wall for the dogs to have somewhere to lay, and also for me to crash on if I happen to stay up too late when I get into something.
I spend a lot of time in my little room, more so soon when the weather keeps me from doing things outside. I'll be re-organizing a lot of it soon, trying to utilize what little space I have left. My prep list and wish list never seem to end, so I have to do the best I can with what space I have and as our budget allows. Though the thought of it makes me feel somewhat silly, I want to have a BOB ready and hanging for each of us. Again, if I need it, it's there, and if I never do, it's not a big deal at all. Better safe than sorry, right??
The general plan for this room is actually beyond just my own space and a place for storage. I'm having this room together in case of emergency as a place to go. No, it's not one of the cold war era bomb shelters by far, or a "safe room" by any means, but merely a place to go. If we have a power outage in winter, I can fire up the generator, run a cord to the small heater, and have a place to keep warm. OR with use of well kept CO2 detectors, a camp heater. Even with using oil lamps or cookstoves in enclosed spaces, CO2 detectors are a must, as is a good fire extinquisher.
A few people we know think we're insane to prep for such things, some think it's laughable and look at us like "crazy survivalists", but we're far from it. Like I've said many times, neither of us are those SHTF scenerio kind of people, we're not preparing for WW3 or for the Cubans to drop in like Red Dawn, we're just preparing ourselves for emergencies. I like being prepared for the occasional storm or power outage, and going another direction, this economy scares me at times. IS it possible to see us in another depression? It's very possible. But...rather than dwell on that, I'll just say I like being prepared for a power outage or other emergency. (at least thats what I tell them) lol
I almost closed this entry at that, but decided to add just a little more. (if its possible for me to write a little)
Everything I store in that basement room is on a list. It took a lot of thinking and research to make my list, but I feel that it's fairly complete. At each area of storage, whether its at each food pantry or each prep storage area, I have a clipboard of graph paper. Each item is listed individually on a single line, and quantities are marked in the graph boxes with a /. As an item is used, the / is turned to a X.
10 packs of AA batteries would list like this-
aa batteries 4 pack //////////
Using 2 packs would show
aa batteries 4 pack ////////XX
If I use an entire line, (all of the squares across), I cross off the item and line with a highlighter and start a new line for it on another page or line. This method makes inventory and shopping lists extremely easy. I know I wrote about this method before, but it's been quite a while, and seemed fitting to add to this post.
OK I'm done now......maybe......I think so........I'm pretty sure.........yea........I am.....finally
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