As preppers and homesteaders, we stay very busy preparing for an uncertain future and maintaining our little slice of creation. Unfortunately sometimes that means some other customary activities get deferred to the another day. We don’t necessarily like it but that’s the way it is sometimes.
If that’s been the case for your Christmas shopping, Laura and I have put together a short list of 12 Christmas gift ideas that may help you buy for the prepper on your list. Or, even if he/she isn’t a prepper yet, perhaps you can subtly nudge him in the right direction. These are not “extreme” prepping supplies, so you shouldn’t get strange looks when he/she unwraps your gift in front of everyone on Christmas morning, but the gifts can be helpful during tough times nonetheless.
Most of these gift ideas comes with a personal knowledge of them. That is, Laura and I have bought many of these items for ourselves and use them around our homestead. Of those that we don’t own, we looked for highly rated items.
So, without further ado:
Mechanix Wear Original Stealth Gloves
A good set of work gloves are definitely worth their weight. They can save your hands from developing blisters while planting in the garden, cutting firewood, or even digging a latrine. These Mechanix gloves are pretty tough yet still relatively thin and comfortable. I’ve used them for some pretty tough work around the homestead and they’ve stood up well. I have punctured them a couple of times on barbed wire fencing. Still few gloves can withstand that for long.
Black Diamond Spot Headlamp
As I’ve written before, I used to the headlamps were the camper’s equivalent of pocket protectors. Boy was I wrong! Having good illumination at night while keeping both hands free is great. This Spot Headlamp by Black Diamond has good beam strength, multiple settings for brightness, and even a red light to keep your night vision. I have one and love it.
The Encyclopedia of Country Living
Carla Emery’s The Encyclopedia of Country Living is quite simply a must have resource for the prepper and homesteader. It’s packed with great information that you’ll need for surviving and living a self-sufficient lifestyle. For more information, have a look at the review that Laura posted a while back.
The SAS Survival Handbook, for Any Climate in Any Situation
John “Lofty” Wiseman, a 26-year veteran of the British Special Air Services, has shared his knowledge of survival techniques in The SAS Survival Handbook. In it he describes how to build the best shelter for your environment, how to find and purify water, how to preserve food, how to build snares that work while you’re sleeping, and much more. The outdoor enthusiast will enjoy this book; I’ve enjoyed mine.
Ka-Bar Black Kukri Machete
Whether you’re cutting samplings to make a shelter, clearing a fence line of brambles, preparing a chicken for precessing, or simply gathering small pieces of firewood, this Kukri is a great machete. The added weight at the end works to the Kukri’s advantage, giving it extra momentum while swing it through a 3-inch limb. Yet, it still feels like a balanced tool in your hand. I’ve relied on mine for many things. (Ok, this one may earn you a few strange looks when it’s opened.)
12-Volt Electric Air Pump
It’s comforting to know that your vehicle, the one that you depend on for your daily commute in to work, has the supplies you’ll need to help you should times get tough. That’s why Laura and I each carry a small portable 12-Volt air pump in our vehicles. When combined with a tire repair kit, you’ll be prepared to fix a flat no matter where you are. (This isn’t the exact model that Laura and I have, but it’s gotten good reviews on Amazon.)
Raised-Bed Garden Kit
Whether you are growing herbs to give your rice and beans some added zest, or your growing more sustaining foods like tomatoes, squash, and okra, being able to make the best use of your garden space is important. The fewer weeds you have to pull out of your garden, the better. Raised bed gardening, and square foot gardening, has really taken off recently for this reason. (This is not the exact system that Laura and I use, but it looks fine. Handy people can probably build their own for a lot less than these cost.)
Heirloom Seed Kit
Give a man a fish, as they say, and he’ll eat for a day. Teach him to fish and he’ll eat for a lifetime. The same applies to growing food as well. Heirloom seeds, such as these, haven’t been crossbred or genetically modified. The thrifty prepper can save seeds year after year and have a garden for a lifetime.
America’s Stone Knife Sharpener
Every chef, every Boy Scout, and every prepper knows that a good sharp knife is essential. It’s a versatile tool with a multitude of applications. But keeping a knife sharp can be a challenge without a good sharpener. Some can be found in the big box stores for under $10. Others are north of $200. I’ve found that this America’s Stone ceramic sharpener does a great job at a modest price.
Survival Basics I & II
The late Ron Hood is one of the best know survival experts in the world. He preceded SurvivorMan and Man vs. Wild. In his instructional DVD’s, Ron teaches survival skills and provides the reason why the methods he’s teaching are good. (While I do own a couple of his DVD’s, this is not one of them but I’m sure it’s well worth it.)
Light My Fire Original Swedish FireSteel
Having a reliable and long lasting way to start fires can be mean the difference between being cold and warm, between having fresh water and going thirsty, between having cooked food and going hungry, between life and death. Fire cannot be overstated. This FireSteel from Light My Fire is what I use to start my fires.
It’s absolutely great to grow your own garden and raise your own food. But what happens with the garden is out of season? How can you enjoy the produce of your hard work during the cold winter months? With a water-bath canner you can store high-acid fruits, preserving them for a time when fresh food is less abundant.
And there you have it. Twelve items that the prepper on your list may enjoy for Christmas, and each one is less than $50.
Got some more suggestions? We’d love to hear them.