Monday, December 14, 2015

Gifts of Preparedness for the New Year

Need ideas for useful stocking stuffers? Need to go bigger but have no idea what the recipient wants or needs?

It would be a very rare person who could not benefit from thoughtfully chosen survival and preparedness gifts. Consider a flashlight for a common "emergency" of finding a lost earring, but one so tiny it's adorable and clips to a keychain or purse to be always at the ready. That same tiny light might be lifesaver if a power outage leaves the owner stranded in a dark, unfamiliar building.

You get the idea: gifts with "normal emergency" uses that could also be at home in a disaster "go-bag." Here's a list of ideas in modest price ranges and a few examples of extra things to create an impressive gift "bundle" with a theme.

Streamlight 73001 Nano Light Miniature Keychain LED Flashlight, Black (about $10) or similar

  • Other keychain tools/gadgets include things like the Gerber Shard, the DoohicKey Multi-Tool, the Swiss+Tech Utilii-Key 6-in-1 Tool, a cheap P38 can opener, or a mini-magnesium fire starter.

Paracord Bracelet to keep minimum 550 cordage at hand (or tuck it in or clip on to daypack or hiking fanny pack)

  • This can be paired with any number of knot-tying educational gifts like a deck of cards with knots illustrated on the backs or Brain Fitness Knot So Fast game.

Emergency Fire Starter ranging from a simple mini-Bic to waterproof matches in a cool container to a Swedish FireSteel to one of the newer quick-strike starters like the Lightning Strike by Holland

Lifestraw personal water filter or similar (no one can have too many of these but spend for certified name brands)
  • Pairs as a theme with a water bottle with purification tabs, a hiking canteen with stainless cup for boiling water, etc.

Survival whistle -- I"m partial to the SOL Rescue Howler Slim as it fits on a keychain, can be heard up to a mile away, has no "pea" to get lost or stuck, and is plastic (safer in freezing temps). Super cheap so put one in everyone's stocking.

Seat belt cutter and window punch / breaker (as low as $7) for that one time the slippery roads send the car into high water or a roll-over.
  • This pairs nicely with other car  emergency items like a warm blanket(s), first aid kit, flashlight, high-calorie emergency bars, etc.