10 Practical Gifts for Women Who Love to Be Prepared

survival-gifts-for-womenIf you are doing life with a woman like me – who raves about a gift that has a practical purpose – then you will be especially excited to peruse my wish list of survival-oriented woman-gear.

It’s like killing multiple birds with one stone: you express your love, she gets a gift and she uses that gift for family preparedness!  Which is a bonus to you.  There’s your 4 calling birds… Hope you find some ideas here for your special lady!


Minimergency Survival Kit for Her

minimergency kit

Compact, practical kit for little emergencies.

Emergencies can happen anywhere, and for her, it can be fly-away hair, dry lips, an accidental stain, a stocking run or worse. So the Minimergency Kit is a fun, but very practical, compact, 16-piece kit designed to help her survive beauty, fashion, and personal care predicaments.

The kit packs in a cute, quality pouch (choose silver or coral color) and is only 3″ x  2″, so it will tuck into even the smallest purses. She’ll love this one!

This Kit Features:

Blistex® Lip Ointment – Dental Floss – Ice Drops Breath Freshener – Emery Board – 0.8 oz Clear Nail Polish – 1 Nail Polish Remover Pad – 0.1 oz Hair Spray – Clear Elastics – Earring Backs – 1 Stain Remover Towelette – Double-Sided Tape – Mending Kit – 1 Deodorant Towelette – 1 Small Latex-Free Bandage – 1 Regular Tampon – 1 Packet of 2 Tablets of Advil®

Best Amazon Price – Around $13 US – Find out more or purchase here.

Grind Your Own Grains – and Live

country living grain mill

Country Living Hand Grain Mill

Grains stored right keep for a long time and are one of the best survival foods, but you have to be able to grind them when the power goes out. Having a durable, versatile, non-electric hand grinding mill is key to being able to use your stored food cache.

So, one thing on my wish list is a non-electric grain mill.  I have an electric one that I use often – especially being gluten-free, which requires me to grind many of my own non-wheat grains.

Doing the research it seems like 3 mills rise to the top:

First, the Damiant Grain Mill is the Cadillac of hand-crank grain mills.  It’s solid cast iron (read: durable and long-lasting) and will grind everything you could possibly think of: grains, spices, legumes, nuts and seeds with no changing of the iron/steel burrs needed.

Next, GrainMaker is also another brand that has very positive reviews on, saying that they yield more flour for your sweat and are easy to change parts in.

My personal 3rd choice would be the Country Living Hand Grain Mill.

A big thing for me is the ease of rotations as I have a bum shoulder, so I probably would have to hold out for the Damiant (even though my husband thinks $1,000 US is a lot to pay for a grain mill for emergency purposes), where other women could easily work with a Country Living Mill which runs around $430 US.

Any hand mill is going to give you a workout and you’ll likely not be grinding more than a day’s worth at a time unless you have a resident Hercules.  (Electric *is* a wonderful thing!) Another key thing to realize is that all these hand mills are heavy! So you would either want a permanent place to mount them or a stable rolling table or something to make it easier to get it out and put it away. So, this is a definite consideration before you purchase one.

Damiant Grain Mill – Around $1,000 US  – Find out more or purchase here.

GrainMaker Mill – Around $675 US – Find out more or purchase here

Country Living Hand Grain Mill – Around $430 US – Find out more or purchase here

Credit Card Sized Survival Tool for Women


Victorinox Swisscard Lite – Multi Tool

Ladies need tools too!  The Swisscard Lite is designed and crafted in Switzerland by Victorinox, the makers of the Swiss Army Knife. The Swisscard Lite Pocket Toolis a rugged, quality for tool for gals (and guys for that matter) who want to be prepared but don’t want the bulk of a pile of tools. The Swisscard Lite easily slips into your purse, pocket, bag or auto glove box.  This tool weights only an ounce and is about the size of 4 stacked credit cards.

It Features:

Mini LED Light – Knife / Letter Opener – Scissors – Straight Pin – Magnifying Glass – Nail File – 2 Flat Screwdrivers – 2 Phillips Head Screwdrivers – Tweezers – Toothpick – Pressurized Ball Point Pen – Ruler in Inches and Centimeters

Best Amazon Price – Around $24 US – Find out more or purchase here.

Turn Oat Grain Into Oatmeal – Yum!

Hand Oat Flaker

Hand Oat Flaker

Next on my wish list is a quality grain flaker.  I actually have a Marga Mulino flaker and it works fine for oats, but realize, flaking grain is a chore.  This machine has aluminum rollers, which – had it not been a gift, I would have sent it back (aluminum shards wind up coming off!)- and after not even a year of light use, the drive shaft stripped out (fortunately my husband was able to craft a fix).

For any roller, you have to sit down and decide that it’s oat-rolling time and just listen to your kids recite their lessons or something while you crank away.  Or better yet, ask them to do it for you!

So, on my wish list to replace my sorry Marga flaker, I would try one of the Schnitzer Campo or Eschenfeld units, which look fabulous and of high quality.

Online Prices – Starting around $220 US – Find out more or purchase here.

Makes Lightweight, Healthy and Affordable Survival Food with a Long Shelf Life


Excalibur Food Dehydrator

Yep, it’s a dehydrator and yes, it’s an electrical gadget. But a quality food dehydrator can get you prepared ahead of time for months-worth of dried foods – that are ready for use in an emergency.

I’ve already posted my highest recommendations on this, the Excalibur series.  All dehydrators are NOT created equal, so don’t waste your time with any other brand, the Excalibur Series is worth twice the price.

Okay, so this isn’t a wish list item for me, but let’s just say it’s an insider tip from one friend to another.

May I say again, I LOVE my dehydrator!! Just took out a batch of dried bananas – yummmm….

So, a dehydrator is a MUST-HAVE survival gift for her!

Here’s a link to my other article on dehydrating.

Best Amazon Price – Around $250 US – Find out more or purchase here.

Bake, Dehydrate, Roast and Cook with this Solar Oven

Solar Oven

Bake, Cook, Roast and Dehydrate with the Sun

Earlier this year, I was intrigued by a friend posting about cooking a meal outside in the sun with a solar oven.  I did some research and added this to my wish list because it just seems downright easy and practical!

No need to build a fire and get it to just the right temperature, just use the free power of the sun and cook on!  She was using a Global Sun Oven and the neat thing about this particular oven is that they sell dehydrating racks specifically for it as well.

So in this one oven you can boil, bake, steam and dehydrate various foods. It also has a leveling tray, which I have heard other models do not – which, when you have to turn something to track the sun, would be a key feature, I’d guess.

I did read a downside, that you have to wash it really well and use it a few times without food to let the vapors from whatever they use for a coating burn off.  And of course, you need some sun for this oven to work! So, residents of cloudy regions (like Seattle) would not find a solar oven very useful!  But if you have a reasonable amount of sunshine where you live, a solar oven could be a really great tool in a pinch.

Best Amazon Price – Around $265 US – Find out more or purchase here.

Easily Make Your Own Butter

butter maker

Hand Crank Butter Maker

Being an that butter is a large proportion of my diet 😉 If the lights went out for good, I would have to place a butter churn on my wish list. Depending on how much butter you want to churn, your choices are varied.

For most families, 1.5 quarts of butter would go a long way, so the churn I’ve eyed up the Paderno Butter Maker which is one that uses a hand crank rather than a dasher.

The drawback is that the directions for the use of this churn, the Paderno, are in French, which I personally do not know. But how hard can it be?  Pour in the cream, crank.

Best Amazon Price – Around $265 US – Find out more or purchase here.

Survival Hamburger – YES!!!

Just like my Nana’s meat grinder

Another handy non-electric tool for the survival kitchen would be a hand-crank meat grinder.  I remember my Nana grinding meat when I was a little girl with one of these.

Look for quality cast iron and features which prevent metal-to-metal wear.  My Nana’s was probably made by a company called Enterprise which was known for its quality workmanship.  It has been renamed Chop-Rite Two, Inc.

I like that they are USA- made products and will likely surf ebay in hopes of finding a quality model.  I saw a tinned one on there, so not all Chop-Rite models are the greatest.  (I’ve heard the tinned ones rust.)

The one I’m featuring here is a bolt-down model for serious meat grinding.  There are clamp on ones that are less expensive.

Online Price – Around $300 US – Find out more or purchase here.

Easily Open Cans in an Emergency

Non-Electric Can Opener

Then there’s all the canned goods… your electric can opener won’t be of much help in an emergency, so I also have on my wish list a good hand-crank can opener.

There are a few more heavy duty models out there and the one I’ve featured here is made by Zyliss – whose products are usually of good quality. This one has a feature where it lifts the lid off after opening.  I like that.

Best Amazon Price – Around $300 US – Find out more or purchase here.

Survival Coffee Maker – Get a Boost When the Chips are Down

Non-Electric Coffee Maker

Finally, how about a drip-style coffee maker?  In an emergency, assuming you’d have some coffee stored up, it could be a real encouragement in hard times to have your cup of joe.

This one from Lindys is stainless steel (meaning, easy to clean) and you just fill the filter with your grounds and pour hot water over them.  Wait a few minutes and you have fresh coffee!

Best Amazon Price – Around $60 US – Find out more or purchase here.

Until next time…


6 Responses to “10 Practical Gifts for Women Who Love to Be Prepared”

  • Marty Shedd

    Hi Carin – the Zyliss can opener is <$15 on Amazon (per your link), not $300 (but I did laugh). Great list I'll be sharing with/shopping for my wife.


    • Carin

      Wowza! How did that slip by me??? Thanks, Marty!

  • Allysse

    When I went looking for interesting survival tips and gadgets what I was really looking for as a woman was a kit to tame fly aways. I don’t find this list of “practical” gifts belittling at all, not in the slightest. I only know how to cook anyway since my feeble mind can handle anything else. Thanks for the amazing article!

    • Sandy

      Wow! I thought we had moved beyond this.

  • You do a wonderful job. Keep up the good work!

  • The traditional meat grinder, the best one. 🙂

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