Thursday, March 10, 2011

Adding to my EDC

EDC is one of those acronyms that gets casually thrown around by hard-core prepper/survivalist types. It took me a bit to figure out exactly what it stood for. So, for the newbies like me out there: EDC stands for Every Day Carry. It is comprised of useful, preparedness-oriented items that you take with you everywhere. If you read blogs like M.D. Creekmore's The Survivalist Blog, you'll find there is much debate about what should be in your EDC, from food to firestarting supplies to weaponry. I'm often curious as to how some of these guys with huge lists of EDC items tote it all around. Do they walk around with strangely bulging pockets? Do they carry it in a backpack?
Camo is optional!
Well, every woman I know, prepper or not, already has an EDC. We call it a purse and they contain a variety of items necessary for feminine survival. Mine tends to collect little girls' hairbows, Cheerios, and ballpoint pens. I kid you not, the last time I cleaned out my purse it had 17 pens. I decided it was high time that I upgrade my EDC. Unfortunately that did not mean that I got a new purse. ;)

 A List of EDC Contents for My Fellow Harried Homemakers:
  1. A fully charged cell phone. I don't use my cell phone very often, so I'm guilty of turning in on, sticking it in the bottom of my purse, and forgetting about it. More often than not, my batteries are low. I need to get better about keeping it charged up.
  2. Cash and coins. Once upon a time I got stuck in a parking garage because I didn't have any cash on hand to pay the unsympathetic parking attendant. Ironically, this happened on the same day I took a tour of a Federal Reserve bank where I had been literally surrounded by money. I learned the hard way that it is wise to have both some cash and coins with me at all times. 
  3. First Aid Kit. Click here to read about what's in the first aid kit I carry in my purse.
  4. A Swiss Army knife or other multi-tool. I selected a Leatherman Squirt PS4 Keychain Toolbecause it was little, cute, and would go on my key chain. Plus, it came in blue, my favorite color.
This is teeny-tiny - just over 2 inches long - and very lightweight

Lots of handy tools

This is not the knife you want to have if you're fighting off grizzly bears in the wilderness. If you're fighting off grizzly bears in the wilderness, why are you toting around a purse, anyway?

5. Flashlight. I bought a Photon Freedom LED Keychain Micro-Lightand I'm super-pleased with it. It is small and inobtrusively fits on my keychain. According to the company, its beam is visible for a mile. It is definitely bright and you can even set it to continuously signal an SOS.

6. Victorinox Swisscard Lite Pocket Tool There is some overlap between this and my other EDC items, but I had to have it. It is just too cool!

This little card is full of surprises.

It holds a ballpoint pen, letter opener, straight pen, tweezers, scissors, and a screwdriver. The card has an LED light, magnifying lens, and can be used as a ruler.

And it will fit easily into a credit card slot in your wallet. Since I don't use credit cards anymore, I had plenty of room for one of these.

There is so much more I could add to the list, such as a firesteel, paracord, and a compass. I think this is a practical list and a good start for any woman's EDC.

What is in your EDC? What are your "must have" items that you carry in your purse? (Or "murse", for my male readers!)


  1. Just yesterday I was talking about with topic with a friend ... although I didn't know it had a nifty acronym :-)

    On Thursday night I went with a girlfriend to take her 8 m.o. daughter to the ER. We were there for 6 hours ... then the baby was finally admitted to the hospital. At one point I went to get us a drink -- and I realized with horror that I had NO CASH! After I scrounged through the bottom of my bag, I ended up literally begging for coins at the vending machine! I was completely appalled at my lack of preparedness!

    Before I beat myself up, however, I must confess that I was completely prepared with ample knitting supplies and my Kindle.

    Lesson learned? I think I need to Prioritize my Purse Preparedness Paraphernalia!

  2. On my keychain, along w/ my multi-tool, I carry a purse sized pepper spray and saftey whistle.
    In my purse is also a small flask or bottle of water and a granola bar or a bag of nuts/trailmix.
    Just for fun or to kill time, I also have a pocket sized puzzle book.

  3. My bare minimum EDC (no kids with me) is this:

    - Keychain: small swiss army knife, mini spyderco knife, nano flashlight, split pea lighter

    - Wallet: small gerber knife, photon micro-light, benadryl capsules

    - Purse: large swiss army knife, BIC lighter, epi-pen, chapstick, hairbrush, pen/paper, hair bands, mini Mag flashlight, more Benadryl

    - Pocket: Ken Onion Mini Mojito folder knife

    I will sometimes leave the house without my purse, but rarely. I definitely have my knife/fire/flashlight bases covered.

  4. Forgot to add: I never leave the house without my cell phone. Heck, I barely leave a room without taking it along with me! ;)

    Cash is one thing I don't carry a lot of usually, I use a lot of plastic, but I do keep an emergency $50 tucked behind my license just in case I need it.

  5. Just a question. I think anymore that the leathermans would not be permitted on air flights. Fortunately I'm not flying weekly (or yearly) but I do wonder about the guys that do. How is that impacting their edc?
    I have gotten my daughter (6 grade) some items to stash in her back pack but if she was caught with a leatherman or gasp a pocket knife we would be looking at suspension.


    1. Some keys can be pretty sharp, and the notches sometimes act like serrations - if your daughter is careful how she carries it, you could give her a 'spare key' that could stay in a backpack pocket which was a key blank with strategic notches and filing - or it could be a real spare key with a sharp edge.

  6. Kandi - You are correct - I'm sure that Leathermans aren't allowed on airplanes or at most schools nowadays. I guess people just have to leave those parts of their EDCs at home when they go to places where they are restricted. Hopefully someone will chime in with more info. Bitsy?

  7. Well, I'm not a kid, so I don't have to worry about being suspended from school. Not sure what I'll do when I send my little ones off. Maybe try and give them some type of tool that's not obviously a knife. I've seen some multi-function scissors, for example.

    As for myself, my pocket folder is technically an "assisted opener," which means it's spring-loaded to open quickly and easily. And this is technically illegal to carry in my state of residence. I admit to breaking the law on this one. I seriously doubt any cop is going to bother to frisk a mom with a toddler and an infant, just to look for a potentially illegal knife. ;)

  8. Here's an example of the scissors I mentioned. They say "knife" in the description, but they actually are referring to the scissor blade (you can easily separate the two pieces so one could be a makeshift knife). I don't know how strict schools are, but this *might* fly underneath the radar: