Modular EDC Project: The Results

This was, overall, a good exercise. Even after spending several hours digging through and organizing my stuff I honestly didn’t change much but what I did change is good. As a personal exercise, this really was a pretty good investment of my time. I found some items that were either expired or ruined, tons of duplication in what I was carrying and I reorganized all my first aid supplies.

Probably Shouldn’t Use Light Colored Carpet In A Shop Area…

Goal Number One: A Smaller “Critical Items” Bag

It is not perfect, it is not as light or small as I would like but it works and it has what I consider to be my “critical items” and a few that are not so critical but it works.

Maxpedition Micro Pocket Organizer

It is nowhere near what I would call “micro” but this little pouch/bag/organizer does fit in any of the cargo pockets I have tested it in. It is a little heavy but I should be just a matter of getting used to it being there as I have with my gun, knife, etc. I added a small carabiner clip which allows me to attach it to a belt loop or another bag. I can also just toss it into another larger bag. The front pocket holds a few packets of hand sanitizer.

Opening it up I have a small tube of lip balm, a little container of over the counter pain relievers (acetaminophen, ibuprofen and naproxen), flashlight, over the counter antacid (rantidine), and the first truly critical item Benadryl (diphenhydramine). Wonderful wife has a sever food allergy that we have, as yet, been able to identify. One of these as soon as the symptoms start to show saves a trip to the emergency room (or worse).

(Very) Minor First Aid

In the pocket to the left I have a few first aid items to treat (very) minor injuries; antiseptic wipes, band-aid, bandage, antibiotic ointment and eye drops. I won’t be able to deal with any serious injuries but it is small and light enough to carry and will help when the grand kids (or Pappa) get a little injury. I plan on adding a few more items as there is plenty more room in the pocket. I keep all of it in a sealed plastic bag to make it easier to get in and out and to help keep the antiseptic wipes from drying out.

The right hand pocket contains a surgical mask (thanks thoughtfullyprepping for the suggestion) and glucose tablets. Both of these items could be considered “critical.” I have issues with my blood sugar and the glucose tabs can help keep my going until I can get some real food in me. The surgical mask can help protect against airborne toxins and contaminants. I plan to upgrade to a better mask shortly and to include a second mask as well.

Everything in here is TSA (and other restricted environments) safe and can be easily pocketed or carried with most of my clothes. It has just the basics and some critical items so it is not too bulky or heavy.

Goal Number Two: Better Organization

Starting out, I had visions of several small packs that could be combined and recombined as needed depending on what was going on and where I would be. That was probably just a little bout of OCD and I got over that quickly. I did however combine all my TSA unfriendly stuff into one of the organizers I bought. That way I know quickly and completely that I am safe for airport travel and I can also tell at a glance that I have restored it when I am done.

Not TSA Safe…

I will probably change out the knife for a better one shortly. The rest will stay.

Goal Number Three: Deduplication

This part worked pretty well. Other that work related items I only have a few things in my work bag.

Work bag contents

Gone is almost all the stuff that is in my EDC bag and the only items left are things that make sense. Yes, everything here duplicates what I have in my EDC bag but this is WAAAYYY less that what was there before. By cleaning out my laptop bag of the duplicate items I can fit the entire EDC bag into it if I need to. The “critical items” bag can be tossed in or kept in a pocket.

All in all I am pretty please with the (small) changes I have made. I think it will go a long way to making sure I have what I need, when I need it and that it is still usable.

God Bless

Inspiration

Psalm 130 – A song of ascents.

Out of the depths I cry to you, Lord; Lord, hear my voice.
Let your ears be attentive to my cry for mercy.
If you, Lord, kept a record of sins, Lord, who could stand?
But with you there is forgiveness, so that we can, with reverence, serve you.
I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits, and in his word I put my hope.
I wait for the Lord more than watchmen wait for the morning, more than watchmen wait for the morning.
Israel, put your hope in the Lord, for with the Lord is unfailing love and with him is full redemption.
He himself will redeem Israel from all their sins.

After reading this Psalm the other day I copied it into my prayer journal but substituting America for Israel:

Out of the depths I cry to you, Lord; Lord, hear my voice.
Let your ears be attentive to my cry for mercy.
If you, Lord, kept a record of sins, Lord, who could stand?
But with you there is forgiveness, so that we can, with reverence, serve you.
I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits, and in his word I put my hope.
I wait for the Lord more than watchmen wait for the morning.
America, put your hope in the Lord, for with the Lord is unfailing love and with him is full redemption.
He himself will redeem America from all their sins.

Given everything we see in the media deriding and even attacking those who want to hold fast to Biblical principles…

Given the moral direction our nation is headed…

Given the threats of enemies both foreign and domestic…

Given the growing hatred and intolerance of those who don’t share the same ideology or views…

…could this prayer be any more appropriate?

What Did You Prep This Week?

Walk With God

My walk with God is still going well. We went to church and Sunday school on Easter. It was a great and uplifting service. Our Wednesday night Bible study resumed this week after the break for Easter and, as always, I learned a lot. I was not 100% on my prayer time and personal Bible study. Work and laziness provided excuses to skip a day but I was able to pick it back up again and finish the week strong.

Self Defense/Hunting

I bought a “lead sled” be Caldwell to help me sight in my rifles. I still haven’t made it out to the range but I was able to make  short work of laser bore-sighting a couple of rifles out to 24 yards in my backyard.

I bought two more lower parts kits. I plan on building an AR for each of my grand kids. It will be a while before they are ready for them so I buy parts when I see them on sale for a good price. I am also considering another pistol build, possibly in 300 Blackout…

Supplies

I reorganized my EDC. I’ll post the details later in the week.

Fitness/Health

My blood pressure is almost back to “normal” and the secondary infection I picked up is healing so I should be fit shortly. My strength and stamina are still not back to where I was before we got sick but it is moving in the right direction.

I did my stretches every day this week and only missed one day of exercise. I was also able to increase the number of reps I do this week. Wonder Wife wants to join a gym so we signed up for trial memberships at a small place around the corner. I hate exercising in those laces but Wonderful Wife thinks it will help her so I’ll go along to help support her efforts to get in shape.

Finances

One of the stocks we own paid a dividend and we requested a check for them. I plan on reinvesting the money in something more stable than the stock market or making a contribution to our IRA.

That’s it for me. That’s what I prepped this week. How about you? What did you Prep this week?

God Bless

Modular EDC Project: Part One

A week or so ago I posted about trying a more modular approach to my everyday carry (EDC) approach. I purchased a couple of organizers from Maxpedition and was eager to get started. Silly things like work and family seemed to keep getting in the way so this took a little longer than expected.

I had several goals in mind when I came up with this little exercise.

First and foremost was that I have become a bit lazy of late with regards to my EDC and I have been leaving the bag in the car rather than carrying it around everywhere. The problem is that some really critical items (and some not so critical items) were in the car instead of on my person.  For an idea of what I was lugging around and what my EDC looks like check these posts:

My EDC

Everyday Carry (EDC) Bag Dum

The secondary goal for this exercise was to be able to organize certain types of gear into discreet containers. One example was that I could have an organizer with TSA unfriendly items so I could pull them quickly and easily without having to pull the bag apart and run the risk of missing something.

The final goal was to reduce a little duplication. I have my EDC bag and I have a laptop bag that I carry when visiting client sites. I have a lot of stuff duplicated between them such as first aid kits, flashlights, knives, multi-tools, etc. With so much duplication it is easy to overlook something that is running low in one or the other bag. It’s also hard to rotate through it especially since some of it can go bad or expire.

It was not one of my goals originally but ThoughfullyPrepping provided some very useful advice on the initial post:

Everyone considers the kit. It’s the be all for everyone.
Only when you think about it there is little you can’t find if you look so the only thing that never leaves my side is a d@mn good knife and a FFP3 (N99) grade face mask.That’s it.

What I consider a decent knife (or two) is already part of my EDC. No matter where I go (except when flying and a few other times when even knives are prohibited) I have a knife on me. I consider it an essential tool. I carry a couple of different models depending on my attire and the circumstances but a knife is a given. I also carry face masks (as well as other items that can provide a similar function such as bandanas) in my EDC bag but, as I mentioned, I have been leaving that in the car of late. So this was well timed advice when deciding what should be in my “always with me” organizer.

So, what did I come up with?

I’ll show you next week!

God Bless

Ruger Announces A New LCRx

While checking my email I came across an announcement by Ruger that I felt was pretty shareworthy; a new addition to the LCRx line of revolvers, this one in .22 Long Rifle.

It is an eight shot revolver sporting a three inch barrel and adjustable sights. This would make one heck of a little plinker and a great choice to introduce folks to shooting handguns. For certain individuals dealing with physical limitations that prevent them from using something more capable it might even make a good self-defense gun.

God Bless

Inspiration

Unless the LORD builds the house, those who build it labor in vain.
Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchman stays awake in vain.
It is in vain that you rise up early and go late to rest,
eating the bread of anxious toil; for he gives to his beloved sleep.

Psalm 127:1-2

I have been very stressed of late. I’m worried about our jobs, our health, our finances, our kids, and our grand kids. I see what’s going on with looming debt crisis and threats from abroad and they add to my worries. It has gotten so bad lately that my sleep has been affected. For almost a week I have been waking up several times a night literally in terror, convinced someone was in the house and about to do us harm. When I could sleep nightmares seemed to plague me all night long.

Each time I would wake up I would check the house (no one was there) and only praying for God’s protection would would allow me to get back to sleep. The lack of sleep was taking a toll on my relationship with Wonderful Wife and having a negative impact on my ability to do my job. I was so tired I wold catch myself dozing of on conference calls, meetings, while reading or watching TV.

That is why this Psalm really resonated with me and made me want to share it.

It helped me to realize that anything I do on my own, as the work of mortal hands, is only temporary. No matter how hard we work and toil in our personal lives, no matter what we do to protect ourselves or our nation none of it matters unless God is with us…and more importantly, we are with Him.

Many use this as a reason (excuse) to give up trying to do anything but that is not what the Bible tells us. God works through us and we still have to do our part but the success is through Him and His will. Not our own efforts.

Understanding that lifted the burden and the worry from my shoulders. His strength and peace filled me.

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.

Matthew 11:28-30

Yes Father, it is. Thank you.

God bless

What Did You Prep This Week?

Walk With God

My walk this week was pretty good. My prayer time was consistent as was my Bible study. I was able to step in and lead our Sunday School lesson on Sunday. We didn’t have Wednesday night Bible study this week but we did have a Maunday Thursday night service and a Good Friday service.

The Thursday night service was extremely powerful. Our pastor gave a detailed overview of the crucifixion and the effects on the human body that had most of us in tears. It was a powerful message that showed, in detail, what Jesus suffered so that our sins would be forgiven, so that my sins would be forgiven.

We also attended the Good Friday and (of course) Easter Sunday services and even made it to Sunday school. It was a powerful and emotional week.

Self Defense/Hunting

I bought two more boxes of .308 ammunition. Another box of what will likely be my “go to” hunting round and a box of “premium” hunting ammunition. It will be fun to test them all out as soon as I can make it out to the range.

I also bought a sling for the new Ruger American rifle. Now I just need to get to the range to get it sighted in.

Supplies

I was able to spend some time working in the garden tying up tomatoes, watering and planting some of the plants I should have gotten in the ground weeks ago.

Fitness/Health

I was pretty consistent about exercising this week as well. At least I did my own bare minimum each day (except one). I was also able to increase the number of reps I do in each exercise session. I am slowly regaining the strength and stamina I had before getting sick.

I made a list of food that can help bring down cholesterol (mine’s not high but Wonderful Wife’s is) and put together a shopping list based around those foods. Since I do most of the cooking I will make sure these get included in our diet.

My blood pressure and heart rate are still high. I have another appointment with the doctor next week. We’ll see what he says.

Finances

We put a little aside out of Wonderful Wife’s paycheck this week but, unfortunately, it will get used pretty soon. We spent a little more on the credit cards this month that we expected but looking over the receipts it was not frivolous.

That’s it for me. That’s what I prepped this week. How about you? What did you Prep this week?

God Bless