@PracTac4u #SemperParatus

Posts tagged “zombies

Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) Wake Up Call

Electromagnetic Pulse. EMP.

Do you know what it is? Do you know how it could impact you? Why should you care?

All of these questions and more are answered in this wonderful video that features a brilliant panel of experts on the subject that could bring about the end of the world as we know it (TEOTWAWKI). This 53 minute video could change your life. It is worth the time. Watch it. Your life, or the life of someone you love, could some day depend on what you will learn in it.

Semper Paratus!


Practical Tactical BOLT Kit©: What It Is And What It’s For

You’ve probably heard of a Bug Out Bag (BOB) or a Get Out Of Dodge (GOOD) bag that can be used as a grab and go kit in case you have to leave an area during an emergency situation. At Practical Tactical, we urge our clients to build what we call a BOLT (Basic Operations for a Limited Time) Kit. This mobile kit based on the basic tenets of preparedness: shelter, water, food, fire, comms/defense and psychological…and is geared towards executing your plan that was developed based on the threats in your area and your individual circumstances and will allow you to maintain your Basic Operations for a Limited Time as you BOLT to your next location that will hopefully be your safe haven from the immediate threat.

BOLT pack

BOLT pack II

Now, what makes our BOLT Kit any different from every other Bug Out or GOOD Bag out there? A focused philosophy, that’s what. Often when people talk about emergency bags (regardless of what you call them) the idea starts out the same…put together a bag of essential items like food and water in case you have to leave in a hurry because of an emergency that will help you survive the event…simple, right? But from there, things tend to spin out and become ever more nebulous. Inevitably you end with Jack the Survivor strapping a pack to his back that contains everything from his favorite comic books to ammo for his Barrett 50 cal. which by the way, he has lovingly cradled in his arms as he treks into the wilderness to live off the land for the duration of the apocalypse, and if you don’t do that too you’re doomed to fail miserably and die immediately or be swallowed up by the very mindless hordes you were trying to escape in the first place.

Whew! Just thinking about that was exhausting.

The point is this. With so many variables involved in any possible future evacuation scenario, it is very easy to quickly become overwhelmed and intimidated simply by the thought of it all. Nobody wants to leave their home, but the SHTF every day for someone and you never know when you might be the one standing in front of the fan. So why not face reality and prepare yourself as best you can to be able to meet the challenge should it ever come knocking at your door at 4 am on some random Tuesday night by taking a focused approach to the task at hand, and that’s getting you and your family out of harms way in the quickest and most efficient way possible.

At Practical Tactical, we believe in developing a plan in advance of the chaos that will keep you from becoming a refugee should you ever have to leave your home due to an emergency. We think of it as the software to go along with the hardware (read as gear) of preparedness. If you leave your home or primary residence without a definite destination and a well thought out and practiced plan on how to get there, you have instantly become a refugee and that’s a bad spot to be in. During a time of crisis, history has shown us that the life of a refugee is cold, hard and short. Whatever you do, you do not want to become a refugee.

Now, if you have grown up in the woods and have years of experience living off the land out there and that is the plan you choose to craft, kit and employ, that’s fine. But let’s be honest, that’s not most people. And that’s okay. Developing a plan that calls for you to relocate to another more “permanent” location is just as viable an alternative, but must be crafted, kitted out and employed just the same. Where you go, what you do and how you do it are all parts to this formula that each of us must decide for ourselves. Be it another piece of land that you own or if you have planned ahead of time to go to a friend or relative’s home outside the impacted area, in our view a definite destination point is vital and that is where a thought out and well built BOLT kit comes in to play.

Read below as we further lay out what a BOLT kit is and what it’s for. Keep in mind that the list you will find below should be considered a starting point and is in no way the end-all-be-all of mobile emergency kits, nor should it be viewed that way. It is simply our goal to get you to think a little differently about what it means to have to evacuate and how to best develop your plans going forward.

BOLT Kit (72+ hrs as you go from point A to point B)

Bugging out, getting out of Dodge (GOOD), emergency evacuation….they all mean essentially the same thing. Something’s gone down in your area, it is no longer safe for you to stay there and you have to leave your home in a hurry. This is counter intuitive in every way for most of us. Your home is your safe place. None of us would make this option our first choice, but that doesn’t mean some situation might arise that will force us out and that is why we strongly suggest you have a BOLT Kit prepped and ready to go for each member of your household. This mobile kit will allow you to maintain your Basic Operations for a Limited Time as you BOLT to your next location that will hopefully be your safe haven from the immediate threat. We cannot control when, where or how disaster will strike, but we can control how prepared we are to deal with disaster. There is a fine line between order and chaos and sometimes that line can be measured in seconds. When every second counts, having a plan and the tools to see that plan through are crucial to survival. As the name implies, your BOLT Kit is the tactical advantage that will help get you through and past any emergency situation.


Natural disasters
• Hurricane
• Tornado
• Flooding
• Winter storms
• Earthquake
Fire (wildfires, neighboring buildings)
Extended power outage
Chemical spill
Infrastructure failure
Terrorist attack

Your BOLT Kit should be a backpack. This will allow you to keep you hands free to deal with any other challenges you might face as you put your emergency plan into effect. Your pack should be large enough and sturdy enough to carry all the gear you will need to sustain you for at least 72 hours of independent survival and comfortable enough to carry for long periods of time. As mentioned above, your BOLT Kit is the gear you will need, based on your plan, to get you from point A to point B and away from the immediate threat that is built by you. You can easily extend the gear in your kit to sustain you for a longer period of time if you choose to do so. Your kit should be ever-evolving and based on your needs, wants and tastes and any B.O.L.T. Kit is better than nothing at all in an emergency.

Water (1 liter/day minimum)
Water filter / purification tabs
* Three options of boiling, filtering and chemical treatment will give you flexibility in securing one of the most basic survival needs
Stainless steel water container
Energy bars and/or other packable/portable foods
* Dehydrated camping meals
* MREs (Meals Ready to Eat)
* Canned goods or Soups
* Meal bars / Energy or Candy bars
Small cooking kit/Small metal pot
Spork / utensil
Metal cup
P38 Can Opener
Lightweight backpack stove with fuel
Hiking Boots / Walking Shoes / Wool Socks
Change of clothes / Weather appropriate (rotate seasonally) and Underwear
Ear plugs / Gloves / Hat / Sunglasses
Rain gear
Military poncho (can be used as shelter)
Emergency blanket (can be used as shelter)
Waterproof rip-stop tarp (can be used as shelter)
Lightweight camping tent
Lightweight (small pack) sleeping bag (30 degree)
Fire starting capabilities (lighters, tinder, etc.)
Quality Multi-tool
Quality knife and Knife sharpener
Flashlight / Headlamp with extra batteries / glow sticks
First Aid kit / Insect repellent
Hygiene kit (including toilet paper)
N95 face mask / bandana / shemagh / scarf / etc.
Fully charged cell phone
Emergency radio (battery or hand crank)
Maps of local areas (pre-marked with multiple routes home) / Compass
Pen and Paper
Copies of Important documents (driver’s license, social security card, account & phone numbers, medical information)
Self-Defense Items (in accordance with your local laws and personal comfort level)
Cash (stored in several places; DO NOT show all your money at one time)
Rescue signal items
200 feet Parachute cord
Duct tape
Sewing kit
Heavy duty garbage bags

So just to recap:

**Decide on a definite destination (with multiple alternatives depending on the crisis) should you ever have to leave your home
**Get a plan on how to reach those destinations
**Build a BOLT kit tailored to fit your plan and review the contents every six months
**Practice your plan before you need it

Semper Paratus!

ZRT : the interview : II

We are headed into fall and the most popular show on television, The Walking Dead, makes its return in a few weeks. Since we ARE speaking with our friends from the Zombie Response Team, and since they ARE the experts on such things, we wanted the second part of our conversation to be a bit more zombie-centric and have some fun while (we still can!) we get educated. With this in mind, we came up with a few more questions for the brave souls that have made it their mission to “Protect and Sever”. Here we go.

ZRT Seal_Hand-300x225

What are the first signs we should watch for to tip us off that the Zombie Apocalypse (ZA) has started?

One clear indication would be mass reports of people eating other people.

Where is the one place you absolutely DO NOT want to be in the event of the ZA?

Anywhere but my home. Our home is secure and fortified and ready for action. Anywhere else is not.

If the ZA pops off tomorrow, do you believe we will be dealing with “walkers” or “sprinters”?

Honestly, it’s a toss up. It really could go either way.

It is a widely held belief that the cause of the ZA would most probably be some form of virus. Given this assumption, do you believe the virus would be able to mutate as the ZA stretched into the future creating the possibility of an “evolving” zombie? Could what starts out as a shambling undead creature somehow morph into a more mobile and aggressive type?

Depends on the type of virus. If it were something like a mutated rabies virus, then the chances of it mutating even more could be possible, but it could not be possible; just depends on how the virus was mutated to begin with and if it’s capable of continuing to mutate.

Given that death and decomposition go hand in hand, how long should we be prepared to survive before we could expect that the walking dead might decompose to the point that they are no longer a viable threat?

Another good question and this also depends on where you reside. In colder regions, it’ll take longer, but on the other hand, they could just freeze, however, once they defrost, who’s to say that they won’t simply come back to “life” and keep moving forward? As far as heat goes, it really depends on the type of virus. If it’s just a virus, then they’d still be alive and not necessarily dead and therefore, decomposition wouldn’t be a reasonable assumption. It’s all variable.

If you could choose the soundtrack to your life during the Zombie Apocalypse, what would it be? Of course, you HAVE to explain this one.

Eminem – Not Afraid
Imagine Dragons – Radioactive
Hollywood Undead – Undead
Matchbook Romance – You Can Run, But We’ll Find You

And a few others. But basically, any songs that make me get up off my ass and make me pumped to keep going. A song that can make me feel empowered or hopeful or simply make me shake my booty, would be a great soundtrack to the Zombie Apocalypse.

How does the average American most underestimate the foe that would be the zombie?

Many people think that because the typical zombie moves slowly, that’d they’d easily be able to escape and evade. But zombies move in hordes so once they reach you (while you sleep or eat or go to the bathroom), you’d not only be fighting off one or two, you’d be fighting off a whole horde.

When it comes to the ZA, what is the one thing you can almost guarantee that we have forgotten? What haven’t we thought about?

Hygiene. I know this sounds silly, but no matter who I talk to about the apocalypse or surviving, nobody ever brings up hygiene. Hygiene is so important, even if you can only scrub your body and teeth and hair with straight water, DO IT. Otherwise, you could get skin irritations (which could lead to infections), your teeth could begin to rot and a variety of other things.

Any member of the military, avid hiker or athlete will tell you, “You have to take care of your feet.” If you were outfitting us, what’s your number one suggestion for the appropriate footwear for the Zombie Apocalypse. Explain.

Honestly, there really is no ‘one’ specific piece of footwear that is going to be better than another. It’s all personal preference. I agree that your feet are important and you need a comfortable shoe. As long as it’s comfortable and above the ankle and you can wear it for an extended period of time without getting sore or getting blisters, then it’s all good.

What’s your self-defense weapon of choice for the ZA?

Either my compound bow or my rifle. One is silent and I’ll be able to use more often, but the other can be used at much longer distances.

We would need to be able to move around after the undead have turned our wonderful country into a rotting wasteland. Which mode of transportation would you recommend?

My feet! Seriously, feet are going to be the best mode of transportation, but a bicycle could work for a time, or even a horse. A vehicle will work for a short period of time, but once gas is no longer easily accessible, it will not be the best option, so we have to have an option that isn’t going to require any type of fuel.

With the zombie killing we’ll inevitably be forced to do in the apocalypse, contagion from blood splatter will definitely be a risk. There is one question that must be answered. Awesome, air-vented (to prevent fogging) motorcycle goggles or mirrored chrome shades?

Neither, Oakley sunglasses. 😉 Gotta look good while killing off the hordes! lol

After the first few days of the outbreak, would sports arenas prove to be a good place to set up a survival camp? If so, open air or dome?

I’d have to decide that on a case-by-case basis, but that doesn’t seem secure enough to me. It’s too open, too big and too many opportunities for someone or a zombie to break in.

Assuming you’ve got the problem of transportation covered, the now greatly depopulated American landscape would be your oyster in the zombie apocalypse. Which national landmark or tourist attraction would you most like to visit now that crowds (of the living) are no longer a deterrent?

All of ‘em! If we have unlimited amount of time and transportation is covered, then let’s do something productive with our time and see it all. Why not!

We know y’all are coffee drinkers, as are we. Given this fact, and understanding that a zombie infested post-apocalyptic America will be found wanting of an open Starbucks when we need one most, I ask you this…a coffee press: important survival item or the MOST important survival item?

Obviously, the #1 most important survival item.

Well, there you have it. Now I feel like I’m really ready for Halloween and anything else that might be headed my way…..once I get me some Oakleys.

A big thanks once again to ZRT for hanging out with us for a while.


ZRT : the interview : I

Zombies! Who doesn’t love ’em? Preparedness. I think we all agree that’s a topic worth our attention, especially these days. Well, in our continuing efforts to bring you information and perspectives you can use, we caught up with our pals with Zombie Response Team out of San Antonio, Texas to get the inside track on the best way to handle both.


ZRT : the interview : I

What is the Zombie Response Team and how did it come into being?

We are an organization that teaches people how to survive anything; even a zombie apocalypse. The HOW it came into being isn’t real exciting. It really just sort of…happened. We realized that we had a desire to learn survival wrapped in a zombie filling and knew others had to feel the same way. And we were right! We decided to brand ourselves differently than the others who try to be ‘militia’ or ‘we know more than you do’. We simply want to help and we try to make that known as best as we can.

What are the goals of ZRT?

We simply want to educate people on how to be prepared. It’s SO simple to get prepared for anything that may come our way, but people see shows like Doomsday Preppers or Doomsday Castles and think they need millions of dollars just to get prepared…but that’s not the case at all. We’re trying very hard to make it known that prepping isn’t necessarily EASY, but it’s not really difficult, either.

Was there any particular event, personal or otherwise, that motivated you to start prepping?

I used to find myself in situations where the lights would go out and my phone was about to die and I couldn’t find a candle or flashlight or anything and then realized I was starving and had no non-perishable foods or anyway to cook those non-perishable foods (like rice)…and so on. I just got tired of it and began to make things easier on myself, like keeping flashlights and candles near by and keeping a stove that ran on propane near by as well. I also started keeping several bottles of water around. Simple things like that that really made a difference when it mattered most.

Which came first….prepping or ZRT, the chicken or the egg?

Prepping came first. ZRT is a mix of our passion for prepping and our enjoyment of zombies.

If we take the zombie apocalypse off the table for this question, what event would you say you are most concerned could cause a large scale (national/global) emergency/SHTF/disaster situation?

On a global scale? I’d have to say something like a solar flare or EMP.

What is the hardest lesson you have learned while prepping? A mistake you made or a relationship that was changed as a result of prepping?

Honestly, the hardest lesson to learn, is that people simply don’t want to be prepared. People seem interested or they say they need or want to be prepared, but when it comes right down to learning the knowledge or skills necessary, they simply don’t want to take that step or are ‘too busy’. To this day, it’s really difficult to talk to people because you just never know who will truly want to learn or not. We have a great desire to teach people and to educate the entire world about simple tasks to be prepared and it’s falling on deaf ears, which is really difficult to come to terms with.

Other than that, we make mistakes all the time, but we learn from them and figure out better ways to go about them. It’s the process of prepping, gotta make a few mistakes before you realize what really works.

What unexpected benefit has prepping added to your life? (Lessons learned about yourself, people you’ve met, etc.)

Getting to know so many other people who share our same beliefs. We have been apart of so many events and have made so many connections and friendships with people that we would have never made before if it weren’t for our public display of prepping.

At Practical Tactical, we believe in the “software” of preparedness like planning & philosophy as much, or maybe more so, than the “hardware” of preparedness like all the gear associated w/ prepping. What’s your opinion on this and where do you fall on the spectrum?

We think it’s a good mix of software and hardware. We think the software needs to be learned and understood first before the hardware, but they essentially go hand-in-hand.

When planning for this interview, I crowd-sourced the members of our training group just to see if they had any questions for you guys and here’s what came back. Obviously, answers of “cannot divulge for proprietary or security reasons” are always acceptable. (A note from the group: “Thanks! Keep up the good work!”)

1) Members of our team come from a wide variety of backgrounds (journalism, law enforcement, medicine, landscape architecture, advertising sales/marketing, business management, etc.). What kinds of backgrounds are y’all working from?

The same, we all come from many, many different backgrounds and we all possess many different skills and knowledge, which is what makes the team really work.

2) From where does ZRT receive funding? And do you do this full-time or part-time?

All of our funding comes straight from memberships and merchandise and donations. We do not receive funding from anywhere else. We do this full-time.

3) Do you work with local/regional/State agencies at all? For example, coordinating with Local Emergency Planning Committees (LEPCs), Red Cross, Emergency Management, etc to enhance their community education initiatives.

We do on occasion, but to be honest, we like to work with independent organizations such as home owners associations and the like because we feel we can reach people on a much more personal level that way. We do enjoy working with the bigger organizations such as the Red Cross and LEPCs, but generally we try to be individualized about our training.

What would you consider to be the biggest challenge you’ve given yourself as it pertains to preparedness, resilience, etc.? What is an example of a major task you’ve undertaken that you probably would not have if you had not been into preparedness? (Example: We put in a fruit tree orchard this year.)

We bought land. Honestly, if we weren’t into preparedness as much as we are, we may not have bought so much land as we did, but we bought about 13 acres and are cultivating it for many different preparedness uses. It’s a huge task, to say the least.

How would you say prepping has helped you to grow as individuals?

Prepping really helps us see the world a lot differently. We don’t just see the world as it is at face value anymore, our eyes are open to all the possibilities of nature, disasters, emergencies, etc. When we walk into a restaurant, our eyes go immediately to the possible exits. Before, we’d just sit down and start ordering, but now, we are more focused on the ‘what ifs’ then simply going about the motions. That doesn’t mean that we’re SO focused that we forget to have a good time, but if something were to happen in that restaurant, we’d know how to escape or how to protect ourselves.

What is your favorite activity that ZRT participates in as a group?

We participate in a variety of events and we love each and every one of them. We really have no favorite, they’re all awesome and unique.

What are you most proud of when it comes to ZRT?

We are most proud when we receive messages and emails from people who tell us how our information has helped them prepare.

What is your favorite part of prepping?

Personally, I love alternative energy. I love being able to charge my cell phone without a wall outlet or being able to use a generator for our camper out on our land and so on. I love being able to find different ways to source electricity.

What is your favorite piece of gear (tool/weapon/kit)? Why? Yes, you can only pick one.

My browning knife. I can pretty much do anything with that knife.

Since it is right there in the name….Zombie Response Team….what are your thoughts on building a training/survival/mutual assistance group or team? This is an important concept, so feel free to take as much space as necessary to explain.

We constantly say how important it is to be in a team environment. We do NOT recommend the lone wolf aspect at all. Having a team means that you have people from all sorts of different backgrounds, with all sorts of different knowledge and skills and no matter what might happen, you have that one person who will come up with a great idea or be able to do a specific task that you may never have thought of. It’s also important to keep morale up and being in a team can definitely help with that. Even if it’s just having someone else to talk to, or to play cards with, humans are not meant to be alone, we do much better with personal interaction. Training and surviving in a team is extremely important.

Inside ZRT, does each member have a particular area of expertise they train the rest of the group members on or does everyone just learn new skills together?

Yes, absolutely. We all train each other on different skills on a regular basis.

What basic concept of preparedness do you feel it is most vital for people to embrace and get a handle on?

Mindset. Without the proper mindset, survival is going to be really difficult.

A big thanks to ZRT for taking some time with us. We hope you enjoyed that conversation as much as we did. With The Walking Dead returning this week, we felt like one part just wasn’t enough with ZRT, so be sure to check back next week for the second part of our interview with the zombie pros.


Neighbor : Friend : Threat

Neighbor. Friend. Threat?

So you’re into personal preparedness, you may even call yourself a prepper. You recognize that there are very real threats in this world in which we live and you have taken and are taking the steps that you deem necessary to help your family survive and make it through any disaster or emergency situation, short or long term. That’s fantastic. Keep up the good work.

What I want to discuss today is the potential threat that you may not have yet considered…your neighbors. The people you live next to every day for years, some of which you may know quite well, a few you may even count among your close friends.

You may think I’m totally off base for even bringing this up, but you might want to think again. Starting at the beginning, do you even know your neighbors? In today’s world, it seems that we don’t more often than not. If you do know them, do you consider them friends or are they more like acquaintances? If you do count them as friends, have you ever discussed your preparedness lifestyle with them? Do you know their level of preparedness? In a time of upheaval, this could prove to be a gaping hole in your security preparedness, a glaring weakness in your plan and it could quite possibly lead to failure of your primary mission: to keep you and your family safe.

Over the fence

Just because you’re squared away with your preps, that does not mean that all is well in your world, in your neighborhood or on your street. If your neighbors are not likewise squared away in their preparedness, you could very well end up becoming the target of the people that you have known for years and probably would never have suspected to act in a threatening way towards you or your family. Even if you have practiced air tight operational security (OPSEC) about your family’s preparedness plans, it won’t take more than a few days of your neighbors being in a stressful situation where they begin to run low on food and water for them to realize that you aren’t in the sinking boat with them and they will want to know why and expect you to help them out. Come on, I mean it is the neighborly thing to do, right?

There is a middle ground on this topic. You can pursue the level of preparedness that you feel is appropriate for your family and help your friends and neighbors become more educated about preparedness without compromising all your details and putting you and your family at risk (at least at any more risk than if you do nothing). Talk to your neighbors about local and national current events and figure out who is interested in learning more about how to prepare in case some threat comes closer to home. At the very least, this will you help you further detail your own preparedness plan because you will find out potential future threats should a disaster scenario unfold.

We like to think we know and understand our fellow man, but the truth is most of the general public do not. I would venture to say that most people do not even have a full understanding of how they will react should they find themselves in an emergency situation. The veneer of our polite society is very thin. We are polite because, as a nation, we are fat and happy. When we are not fat and happy anymore, we will not be so polite.

To drive the point home with a visual example I wanted to share this classic episode from the Twilight Zone, The Shelter. It is a cautionary tale that you may find a bit shocking, but it is in no way beyond the realm of possibility. Enjoy.


Part 1/2

Part 2/2

Preparedness Life vs. Amazing Life: You can have both!

We just passed the fourth of July and for most of us, that is a day we spend with family and friends exercising our freedoms and celebrating the independence of our great nation as we also remember the people that have paid the ultimate price to earn it. We hope everyone out there enjoyed theirs as much as we enjoyed ours.

This year, we were fortunate enough to have a long time friend come to town to spend a couple of days with us around the holiday and join in our celebration. While having a conversation as we walked through the house, we found ourselves in our music room. My friend asked me when was the last time I had picked up my guitar and played a little, recognizing that my wife and I have been more than a little busy this year working on various projects here around our home with putting in the fruit tree orchard, getting our hens and building the chicken coop, not to mention our ever-growing vegetable garden and with me working on my new business as well as both of us working out full time jobs. He asked because he just knows how much I enjoy it. With my friend also being of a preparedness mind and us having discussed such issues many times before, I knew where he was coming from as he said he just wanted to make sure that I wasn’t becoming consumed with our journey towards preparedness. Deep down I believe he already knew the answer, but he was just making sure. I quickly reassured him that I had been playing occasionally and that I absolutely had an ample supply of extra guitar strings put back for a rainy day! This brought an easy smile to his face because he knew I meant what I had said and we moved along.

Too often it seems that once people become aware of the reality that surrounds us every day and educate themselves on the advantages of becoming more prepared, they allow themselves to become overwhelmed. The thoughts that there is just so much to get done and that it needs to happen as soon as possible begin to dominate their conscience and they unwittingly become obsessed and begin to lose focus on the better things in life and (in most cases) the very things that motivated them to take steps to begin to prepare in the first place…their families and their friends and the other activities in life that bring them joy. What starts out as a well-intentioned activity becomes a burdening weight that can lead to such extreme disorders as paranoia and depression. This is not the case in every instance, but it does happen and more often than we may like to acknowledge. What’s worse is that there are people in the preparedness community that will tell you that if you’re not working on your readiness every day…that if you’re “wasting” your time, money and efforts on anything that isn’t preparedness related…that you are doing it wrong and (yes) that there is even something wrong with you.

We at Practical Tactical absolutely reject this notion and I am here to tell you that you don’t have to choose and that you can absolutely practice a preparedness lifestyle and still lead an amazing life. All it takes is developing a plan, setting priorities and taking your journey one day at a time.

As I mentioned above, we have been extremely busy this year and we have been very productive as a result, but we have also had a fantastic year full of fun, memory making experiences that we will cherish forever that we have been able to share with each other as well as our family and friends. We love sports = we ticked off a bucket list item and attended the NCAA Final Four basketball weekend, live music = we catch a concert out virtually every time one of our favorite artists comes around, being outdoors = we take walks and dust off our “athlete-selves” that we used to be whenever we feel like it, spending time with family and making time for ourselves = a week’s vacation with my brother and his family making memories with my six year old nephew and hanging out with my best friend on the planet and the greatest gift of my life, my wife Alice. Like I mentioned earlier referencing our plans over the 4th of July holiday, we have friends over all the time and they share in our lives abundantly. We live, laugh and love out loud for the world to see and we don’t apologize for it as we cherish every moment. We are grateful. So far in 2013, when it comes to enjoying life doing the things that make you happy, I think it’s safe to say we have accomplished those things in spades!

We have had an amazing year so far and we have still managed to make great strides in our preparedness. Best part is, the year is only half over!!! I really can’t wait to see what we get accomplished next…on both fronts! We have done it and you can too. Don’t ever let anyone tell you that you can’t.

1. Develop a personal preparedness plan for your situation
2. Set priorities within your plan and work towards them consistently
3. Preparedness is not a destination, it’s a journey. Make sure you take time to smell the roses along the way.

We know that there are real threats and challenges out there in this old world that we all must face every day, both in our personal lives and as a nation. We have accepted that fact and I would say we have even embraced it. We recognize that there is a very good chance that the next 20 years will not be the same as the last few decades, but we have decided to throw off the paralytic shackles of cognitive dissonance and lean into the coming change. That is why we work as hard as we do in our preparedness life. We are passionate about our relationships and our happiness. We live the life we love and we love the life we live and we take practical steps every day to strengthen our ability to carry that notion forward. We are readying ourselves for whatever may come, teaching and sharing what we know with others along the way. We do not live under a cloud of despair and we are not drowning in fear. We swim in the strengthening sunshine that is hope and are buoyed by a sense of purpose and accomplishment that we share as we build the life we choose going forward. We are free and we are happy.

You can absolutely practice a preparedness lifestyle and still lead an amazing life. We are proof of that. It is our hope that you will choose to make the effort required to join us in the pursuit, just remember to take some time to enjoy the journey.



If you’re reading this, you’re probably aware that there is a key date coming up later this month…December 21, 2012. Depending on who you talk to, this date represents everything from a rare and magnificent galactic alignment of heavenly bodies, to a great awakening of consciousness, even the apocalyptic end of the world. All tied to an ancient Mayan prophecy in one way or another. Others just know it as Friday.

Regardless of what you think about the date, the fact that it is so specific got me to thinking about disaster on a timeline, whether or not that would impact me as someone that already practices a life of preparedness and if it did, how would I act or prepare differently.

For me, I don’t believe it would make that much difference. We adopted a preparedness lifestyle years ago and do our best to improve our level of readiness every day. Suddenly finding out that there was a zombie alien landing scheduled for 3:45 pm next Thursday wouldn’t change anything for us. It would however, trigger a vigorous assessment of our current plans as we processed the new information. From there, we would adapt accordingly and do the best we could as we moved forward.



But, that’s us. We’re already working towards a level of preparedness that we have determined is appropriate for our family and our situation. What about you? What are you preparing for? On the other hand, what if you’re not already well on your way to being ready for zombie aliens, or any other life altering event for that matter? What if you’ve done virtually nothing to be ready to deal with an emergency situation, whether it’s on a global, national, regional or local scale? What if you haven’t taken the steps necessary to insulate yourself against even an unexpected upheaval in your personal life like a serious injury to you or a family member or the loss of a job? What if you knew ahead of time that this tumult was coming? Would that knowledge motivate you to change your behavior? Of course it would. The question is, why not save yourself some stress and headache and go ahead and take some basic steps to mitigate the impacts of any emergency that may come to you down the road?

Really, what difference does it make if you know when the “big bad” is going to show up? If you would fight the crowds to get the supplies you and your family would need in the chaos of the moment that will surely accompany any such event, why not prepare now to remove yourself from the panic equation later? By getting your ducks in a row today, you will be free to assess the situation, then adapt and implement your plans that were made without the proverbial gun to your head with a clear purpose in the moment and greatly increase your ability to make it through to the other side of any future emergency event.

This also brings up the issue of event specific preparedness. Do you feel you need a target event to motivate you to get prepared? I can understand this way of thinking, to a point. Who hasn’t watched a zombie or natural disaster movie and wondered to themselves, “What if that was me?” or “What would I do in that situation?” A good movie or a well written book or even an interesting blog post (wink) can easily serve as the spark that gets you started on your journey to preparedness and I’m all for it. Hey, whatever it takes to get you on the road to ready. But does that mean that you should limit your preparedness to focus on a singular event? I wouldn’t recommend it. From our point of view, the bottom line goal is to strive to live a prepared lifestyle. This is what we’re comfortable with and it works for our family. The bright side to this approach is that if you’re doing it right, you’ll be more ready for anything that comes your way and you will have achieved that new lot in life without turning your world upside down in the process. By simply accounting for each of the basic tenets of preparedness…shelter, water, food, fire, communications/defense and psychological readiness…in you every day life with an eye towards setting yourself up to maintain these in the future, we believe you will be ready to deal with and overcome whatever may come your way, including zombie aliens.

So, why not get started today? We love zombies! We love aliens. Shoot, we dig the Mayans, too. Whatever feeds your fire and motivates you to get prepared, we’re all for it. Just get started. You’ll be well on your way to ready before you know it and I’m betting you’ll be surprised at how satisfying your journey will be along the way.

We would love to know what motivates you to get prepared, or hear stories of successes or failures you have experienced on your road to ready. Share with us by leaving a comment below or reach out to us on twitter @PracTac4U. We are growing and learning in our preparedness every day and we can’t wait to hear from you. Take care out there.