Glenn Reynolds has done many casual survivalists a favor with a couple articles. Here is the first and here is the second. Both of these are aimed at pulling through a blizzard or a storm outage, not end of the world type disaster. Think low budget. But they do offer a good starting point if you want to go beyond. Read them, do your research, and then decide.
Something not mentioned are the wind up flashlights that have become available with LED bulbs. Some even have a radio built in. This one will even charge a cell-phone. This liberates you from being dependant upon a generator or batteries to keep you in light and information. In case your merit badge earned fire starting skills have escaped you, try this little gem. And a word of advice FEMA recommends keeping three to five days worth of food, water, and other supplies on hand. Pad your reserves out at least two more days in case things stay bad longer than predicted so you do not have to brave the weather and other desperate people to get supplies.
This concludes today's impromtu PSA. And don't forget to check out the Survival blog link for a lot more information.