Professor Preponomics

Welcome to Professor Preponomics

We hope you enjoy the articles, information, important news and resources developed for you here at Professor Preponomics, and that you will visit often. Here you’ll learn about how and why you need to live a prepared life, and we hope you’ll join in the journey. Understanding that each of us comes to preparedness from diverse backgrounds, with varying levels of experience, and with a unique set of resources, you’ll find that we try to develop something for everyone – and that we do our level best to encourage ongoing development and forward progress in every good endeavor!

Skill Building

Specialization and Cross Training – Weekend Homework

Specialization and Cross Training – Weekend Homework
Specialization and Cross Training

The weekend is here! Hoping you have great plans in the works, and want to share with you a little bit of “Preponomics Homework” to inspire your thoughts, and encourage the ongoing development of your preparedness plans. For our Weekend Homework, let’s consider the benefits of both specialization and cross-training. First the background, and the question follows…

Specialization and Cross Training

Background… The work load associated with self-sufficiency and preparedness demands, and benefits greatly from, specialization among the helpers in any group. This is true whether the activity involves research and planning, acquisition of supplies, or hands-on work efforts. Individuals who specialize can dedicate greater time to the details of any task, and develop expertise in one or more subject areas.

The value of specialization should never be underestimated, and yet, it is also true that self-sufficiency and preparedness also benefit from cross-training. More than one person in any group should be able to bake bread, care for livestock, repair tools and equipment, fish or hunt game, render first aid, build a shelter, and so much more. The building of knowledge and skills across areas allows for greater flexibility in work efforts, makes possible more help in times of emergency, and is a stabilizing force over the course of time.

The Question… What is the most effective strategy, within my household or other community group, for balancing specialization with cross-training? In what areas are our greatest strengths? Are there any areas in need of attention?


HINT: Survival is one of those pass-fail kinds of courses. A passing answer shall not include “there is nothing else I can do”. There’s a lot you can do. Let’s get started.

Stay the course. Stay well. Be safe everyone!

If you wish to discuss or comment on this post, or any other Professor Preponomics article or post, we invite you to visit the Professor Preponomics GAB Page. There, you can converse with other Professor Preponomics readers and comment freely (subject to GAB’s terms of service). The GAB link to discuss this article can be found here. We encourage thoughtful discourse as we are working to help everyone learn how to survive the dangerous and uncertain times ahead.

We have also become part of the GETTR community. You are welcome to join the conversation with us there as well!

Food Storage Moms – Delicious Recipes and Tips for Food Preservation

Food Storage Moms – Delicious Recipes and Tips for Food Preservation

Food Storage Moms

Food Storage Moms is a delightful website to browse and enjoy. It includes great ideas for the best from scratch cooking, tips for creating and storing meals in a jar, pantry planning, and so much more. The site is an excellent educational resource, and we recommend it highly to Professor Preponomics readers!

Here’s an excellent article well worth reading: “30 Pioneer Skills We Cannot Lose”
“There are 30 pioneer skills we cannot lose at the very minimum I want to address today. Here’s the deal, I grew up sewing my own clothes, making bread, canning food, and gardening. Now, some of these skills we may perform every day, once a week, or some we have never done and we don’t want to do them.”


HINT: Survival is one of those pass-fail kinds of courses. A passing answer shall not include “there is nothing else I can do”. There’s a lot you can do. Let’s get started.

Stay the course. Stay well. Be safe everyone!

If you wish to discuss or comment on this post, or any other Professor Preponomics article or post, we invite you to visit the Professor Preponomics GAB Page. There, you can converse with other Professor Preponomics readers and comment freely (subject to GAB’s terms of service). The GAB link to discuss this article can be found here. We encourage thoughtful discourse as we are working to help everyone learn how to survive the dangerous and uncertain times ahead.

We have also become part of the GETTR community. You are welcome to join the conversation with us there as well!

Family Emergency Plans – Class Notes

Class Notes

As we work through the coming week, let’s continue our conversation, and our preparedness planning, with a focus on the importance of writing, posting, communicating, and practicing family emergency plans.

Family Emergency Plans

Here are 10 suggestions to help you get started!

1. Begin with the fundamentals. Focus in on those steps that are universal to a broad range of emergency circumstances. The initial steps may seem overly simple, and even obvious. Even so, reviewing and practicing these remains critically important. During the stress of an actual, realized emergency situation, we may not think as clearly as we do when the scenario is an exercise of our thoughts and imaginations.

Examples might include the following:

a) Seek immediate safety, and a safe and stabilized location.

b) Render first aid when possible and appropriate, and call emergency services for life saving support.

c) Communicate with family, friends and co-workers.

2. Include easy to read and process evacuation routes, meeting places, and important contact information.

3. Draft special instructions for emergencies that present unique circumstances – dangers or risks. Medical emergencies. Fire. Severe weather including winter storms, tornadoes, and hurricanes. Fallen trees or electrical lines. Bomb threats. Chemical exposure (chemical spills, plant explosions). Nuclear accidents or system failures. EMP. Acts of terrorism or war. Cyber attacks.

4. What are the special needs or circumstances of your family? Think about special health risks, necessary medicines or dietary considerations, the capacity of each individual to evacuate, the unique features of any location – or the relative locations of all the people in your group, access to transportation, and more. What special provisions should be a part of your plan to protect children, the elderly, and the disabled? Remember your family pets, and your farm and ranch animals.

5. Establish a system for early warnings. On what sources will you rely? Do you have a way to receive alerts throughout the course of a usual day, while on the road or in the air for travel? How should these be adjusted for alerts through the course of the night while you’re sleeping? What level of warning signal should trigger emergency action?

6. Create checklists – review and prioritize what you’ve included. Update these at least a couple times a year, and when there is any significant change to personal circumstances. Don’t forget your Bug-Out and Get-Home Bags!

7. Make MAPS part your emergency planning and resource development. These should include printed maps for your local area, city, state, region, and the country. You should also include basic printed maps that specifically address your evacuation routes, and can be quickly and easily referenced. Most emergency situations come with great time sensitivity. Keep this in your thinking at every level of planning and preparedness. Be prepared as well to help others. Having resources that cover places outside your specific locale may help you to be more aware of risks emerging in other areas, and may also help you guide someone else in need of help from a distance.

8. Expand your communications options. In addition to a cell phone and charger, keep and learn to use radios, wear a good quality whistle, and be able to use emergency signals like flares or even bright orange emergency roadside cones.

9. Put it all in writing, involve every member of your group in assessing draft-level ideas, revising and refining those. Practice, practice, practice. You can ‘run scenarios’ around the table in conversation, but should also work on ‘practice runs’ too. No doubt you’ll discover that there is always something to learn and consider further in the process actualized practice. What we have in our minds is not always a match to ‘real life’. Complicating this further… Emergency situations tend to be chaotic by their very nature – and don’t tend to unfold in expected ways! The ability to think and adjust quickly may save your life or the life of another.

10. Always keep safety in mind. Remember your objective is to ARRIVE ALIVE on the other side of any crisis, and to help others to do the same.

Additional Resources…

Posted at Red Cross: “Create Your Emergency Plan in Just 3 Steps”

Posted at Self-Reliance University: “A Simple & Easy Way To Create a Family Emergency Plan Today” with Nick Meacher

Posted at the CDC: “Emergency Action Plan” (Template)

Posted at The Provident Prepper: “Steps to Build a Successful Family Emergency Plan” By Kylene

Posted Ready.gov: “Make a Plan”

Thoughtful Quote to Share…

“By Failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” – Benjamin Franklin

Recommended Reading…

U.S. Air Force Survival Handbook

U.S. Air Force Survival Handbook: The Portable and Essential Guide to Staying Alive
By The United States Air Force and Jay McCullough


How to Survive the End of the World As We Know It

How to Survive the End of the World As We Know It: Tactics, Techniques, and Technologies For Uncertain Times
By James Wesley, Rawles




If you wish to discuss or comment on this post, or any other Professor Preponomics article or post, we invite you to visit the Professor Preponomics GAB Page. There, you can converse with other Professor Preponomics readers and comment freely (subject to GAB’s terms of service). The GAB link to discuss this article can be found here. We encourage thoughtful discourse as we are working to help everyone learn how to survive the dangerous and uncertain times ahead.

Staying Cool in the Summer Heat — Class Notes

Class Notes

Staying Cool in the Summer Heat

As we work through the coming week, let’s build on the most recent Weekend Homework, continue our conversation, and our preparedness planning, with a focus on the importance of low tech solutions as key components of our critical infrastructure.

We love the sun and the playful activities of summer! We love it all even more so when we can seek the reprieve of shelter and shade. Staying cool in the summer heat is something we can learn to do using simple ideas, and relatively low levels of technology. These ideas are important not only for human comfort and safety, but also for greenhouse gardens and food preservation too.

We’ll all fare much better when the grid goes down if we’ve invested ourselves in skill building beforehand. Read. Add books to personal libraries. Watch tutorial videos. Create notebooks with important information, ideas, and instruction.

Here are just a few of many ideas to stir the imagination, and inspire your solution-focused thinking!

Zeer Pot
Staying Cool in the Summer Heat
Zeer pot example – Image credit: Adam from ModernBushman.com

Although the Zeer Pot may not produce modern levels of refrigeration, it does provide a cooling benefit. In any environment requiring low tech solutions, this one is worth considering. It’s excellent as well for teaching and learning about heat transfer and cooling processes. Create your own Zeer Pot as part of a summer project for the family, or find a way to work it into a home school curriculum. The article below is an excellent overview.

Posted at Rebuilding Civilization: “Busting myths about the Zeer pot”

Evaporative Cooling and Geothermal Strategies

Shade cloth can be tremendously helpful in cooling a greenhouse on hot days. Shade cloth is available in varying densities, and is a passive solution. It’s affordable, and easy to use (seasonally or year ’round). In fact, you might find that your plants fare better with a little bit of shade. In the hottest days of summer, people fare better too!

As a supplement to the shade cloth, consider misters for their evaporative cooling effects. These are remarkably effective, and relatively low tech. In a grid-down scenario, supplemental power from a solar powered water pump will be needed to create water pressure in a system like this one. But don’t despair. This is doable! Solar panels may also generate enough electricity to run modest fans for the benefit of air flow.

In addition to these ideas, consider a low tech geothermal system designed to draw cooler air from piping placed below ground. This strategy is best considered as part of your preliminary design planning. If an in-ground, or partially in-ground greenhouse is an option, this may be another worthwhile consideration with geothermal benefits.

Posted at Urban Farmer Curtis Stone: “How and Why We Use SHADE CLOTH” by Curtis Stone

Dehumidifiers

Dehumidifers work differently than air conditioning units. By drying the air, they make a warmer environment much comfortable. They an also help reduce the demands placed on today’s HVAC units. In and of themselves, dehumidifiers draw far less power. This level of supplemental tech will require the energy support of a solar system during should the grid go down, but should be much more sustainable over a long period of time.

Posted at The Zone Hole: “How To Use A Dehumidifer To Cool A Room”

Root Cellars

Root cellars are an excellent consideration for the food storage of any homesteader. These were popular among the generations of our grandparents and great grandparents. Root cellars are often found, even today, in many rural parts of the country. Consider adding a dehumidifier with solar support as an added benefit as needed.

Posted at Tractor Supply: “How To Build A Root Cellar On Your Land” By Scott Bish

Earth Ships

Earth Ships use passive geothermal systems to draw cool air through tubes buried in earth. Warmer air from within the homes naturally rises, and is allowed to escape through vents or window portals. The movement of the warmer air up-and-out pulls cooler air from the buried tubes, and into the living space. Built beneath earthen berms, there are lots of fabulously creative designs and ideas for Earth Ship living.

Posted at OGB: “Earthship Thermal Wrap and Cooling Tubes”

Yakhchals
Yakhchāl | © Wikimedia Commons

Ice in the desert! This is the brilliant innovation of ancient people.

Posted at The Culture Trip: “This Ancient Technique to Make Ice in the Desert is Mind Boggling”

“Making ice in the desert? The irony is in the sentence itself, as most people can only fathom making ice by using their freezers, in a practical and modern manner. However, people had figured out how to make ice in the desert over a millennia ago. This practice requires an ingenious structure called a yakhchāl, and was used as far back as 400 BC.”

For more great ideas, check out our post on Water Storage!

If you wish to discuss or comment on this article, or any other Professor Preponomics article or post, we invite you to visit the Professor Preponomics GAB Page. There, you can converse with other Professor Preponomics readers and comment freely (subject to GAB’s terms of service). The GAB link to discuss this article can be found here. We encourage thoughtful discourse as we are working to help everyone learn how to survive the dangerous and uncertain times ahead.

Remain steady. Be safe. Stay well, everyone!

Summer Skill Building — Weekend Homework

The weekend is here! Hoping you have great plans in the works, and want to share with you a little bit of “Preponomics Homework” to inspire your thoughts, and encourage the ongoing development of your preparedness plans. For our Weekend Homework, let’s consider the importance of informed awareness and its impact on preparedness. First the background, and the question follows…

Summer Skill Building

Background: The official start to summer is just around the corner now. This is an outstanding time to invest in summer skill building activities. These can be fun, interesting, and engaging for individuals, family households, local communities, and communities of people formed around a common interest. If you haven’t considered this seriously, now is the time. Choose a practical skill or project with preparedness and self-sufficiency in mind. It may be an unfinished project, or something entirely new. We can learn a lot about everything from prioritization to planning in the development stage – and this is an added bonus to skill building and project completion!

Here are a few ideas to start the creative juices flowing…

Summer Skill Building
PORTABLE PARABOLIC SUN OVEN –
SOLAR COOKING APPLIANCE
  • Learn to can, dehydrate and/or freeze dry foods from the garden for shelf-stable storage. Have some fun with pickles, relishes, and flavorful chutneys.
  • Steep your favorite sun tea, and hand churn an ice cream treat.
  • Make gardening a year ‘round endeavor. Plan and build raised beds or a greenhouse for your fall and winter crops (see this video about creating a hinged hoop house for your planting beds to garden year-round). Also visit our GARDENING category for more ideas.
  • Practice cooking a delicious meal with a solar oven, or learn to use a meat smoker.
  • Enjoy nature hikes. Practice land and water safety protocols, learn to identify native plants, and go fishing. Remember to file your flight plans.
  • Study options for basic shelters, and practice setting these up. Tents and tipis (teepees) are a great place to start.
  • Set up a weather station, learn to recognize cloud forms, weather patterns, and storm signals. Put together a storm safety plan for yourself and your family.
  • Visit area parks and historic sites, and learn about how people lived in times past. Be inspired by what you learn, and think about how the practices of the past might be especially useful in a contemporary survival situation.
  • Catch up on your summer reading, scout the best video tutorials, and gather with family and friends for an evening and a thoughtfully chosen movie.

The Question: How can I make the most of the warm summer months by combining fun, summer skill building, lots of learning, and practical preparedness and self-sufficiency projects?

HINT: Survival is one of those pass-fail kinds of courses. A passing answer shall not include “there is nothing else I can do”. There’s a lot you can do. Let’s get started.

Remain steady. Stay well. Be safe everyone!

For discussion, check out our GAB.COM and our BRIGHTEON.SOCIAL pages.