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Prepping the Essentials for Veterans


November 7, 2014

As originally published on American Preppers Network

Prepping from Square One: How Returning Veterans Can Start Setting Up

Returning VeteransBy Christina Moore

As much as you might have looked forward to leaving the service, making that transition is always difficult. Life in the service is so regimented and so controlled that when you leave, all of that (for lack of a better word) freedom can make you feel like you are literally at loose ends. Even the most well adjusted have a hard time making the transition.

One sentiment that many people express after they leave the service is that building their home helped. This doesn’t have to mean literally building a house, though if you want to spend some time volunteering for Habitat for Humanity, that’s great! In this case, what they mean is finding a permanent home, moving in and making it their own.

Note: It is true that many service people get sent out to active duty and their families stay behind and take care of the home finding/nesting things while they are away. For active duty service people whose families traveled with them and who primarily used base housing, finding a new house and “nesting it up” can be very soothing.

Of course, it’s also worth noting that the buying process can be very stressful, especially if you and your spouse are now trying to find civilian employment. Remember: there are some housing benefits that are only offered after you leave the service. For example, service members are entitled to lower mortgage rates than civilians. Of course, not all lenders know how to track down service details and apply these benefits, so it may be helpful to reference online resources like Low VA Rates, which specializes in helping veterans find mortgages.

Once you have the house, you can start nesting and prepping. A lot of veterans find that creating a schedule for these things and sticking to it is very helpful. In a way, they take the rigid time management of their service and apply it here: they spend X time working on unpacking, helping the family decorate, etc. Then they spend X time finding employment, meeting with transition counselors, getting set up with their health and other VA benefits, etc.

Another great place to apply this rigidity is with your budget. It’s great that you want to jump right in to prepping but don’t spend all of your money on supply stocks. Instead, create space in your household budget to build up your supplies. Then, portion that line item out into things like food, canning, non perishables and other supplies, etc. There are all sorts of items that you’ll want to store.

In the beginning, though, you’ll want to stock up primarily on food stores and basic supplies like toilet paper. A lot of ex service people think the best way to do this is by buying up caseloads of MREs but believe us when we tell you: there are lots of other types of food that you can store and store well. Yes, having the MREs on hand will give you peace of mind, but do you really want those things to be your first option instead of your last? Even when, if you learn how to can and store better tasting stuff, you can have lots of great stuff on hand?

You can also apply this structure to learning new skills. Make time to learn things like canning, building, etc. You learned a lot of survival skills while you were in the service. There are, of course, other skills that can be helpful to someone who wants to really embrace the prepping lifestyle.

A lot of people believe that our lifestyle is extreme and, no matter how many episodes of the Walking Dead they watch that they don’t need these skills. Even if you’re pretty sure you’ll never really need your stores and prepping skills, the prepper lifestyle is a great way to help ease the stress of transitioning from active duty to civilian life.

Reposted by Reagangirl.com  11/7/14

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