How To Start An IV

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How To Start An IV Starting an IV is a valuable skill to have in your first aid arsenal and you may potentially save someone’s life doing it, since it can be used as a route of delivering medication or drawing blood. It takes a little practice to get the hang of it, but once you can do it […]

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Shout out to our new sponsers

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In case you haven’t noticed we picked up two new sponsors for the month of August…

They are Living Rational who sells a wide selection of prepping supplies

along with

Camping and Survival who also sells a wide variety of prepping supplies. You can also receive a discount if you use the code tpc on the order form.

If you are in the market for supplies our sponsors are a good place to start your shopping.

Still clinging to my God and my guns,


Wandering Wednesday

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Enter if you dare!

 It’s been a really cool summer here. We’ve yet to reach triple digits around here which is pretty unusual for the end of July.  I’ll take it though.  It’s sprinkling now and the weather man’s calling for rain up to two inches this afternoon and evening with temps in the 70’s today.  Crazy!!

I don’t think the tomatoes know exactly how to act. I haven’t been covered up in them like I was last year. I noticed yesterday there were some more blooms set.  I haven’t been able to put up any salsa yet, I keep waiting till I have enough tomatoes to make a big run of it.  I just want to be able to put up 12-14 quarts for the year. 

Random Lilly Picture

 I’ve been making up some Ro-tel with the tomatoes that are getting overly ripe. I really don’t like doing them that way because there’s really no consistency of taste between the batches. It’s just that I’m not getting enough ripe to do a big batch yet either. It looks like after the rain clears out and it dries up a little I should have enough for them. One thing I do have plenty of is peppers.

Speaking of peppers I went out yesterday and picked almost a five gallon bucket full of jalapeno’s, Serrano’s and hot banana peppers.  There are enough still left out there in the garden to fill another one. I’ve got a couple of trays of each out in the dehydrator right now.

Another random flower picture for Sandy

It seems every year we get a flood of peppers.  Of course that’s because I’ve been buying the plants rather than starting them from seed.  I’ve had very little luck starting peppers.  And when I buy the plants they come in 4 packs.  Which means we end up with enough peppers to feed the incoming masses of illegals flooding across the Texas border.

 I’ve been thinking of talking to the Mexican restaurant in town to see if they might be interested in buying some Serrano’s and jalapeno’s.  I’ve got two jalapenos plants that are putting out these gorgeous large peppers just right for stuffing. 

We need  to do some grilling soon so I can toss some stuffed ones on the pit.  Yummy!! Which reminds me…  I need to start saving the ones that are turning red so I can make some more chipotle peppers.  Those really turned out well last year and I’ve only got a tiny bit left from last year.

I didn’t plant nearly as many onions as I did last year and now I’m regretting it. We use tons of onions around here and I find that I’ve not planted even 1/4 of the onions we need for the coming year.  Why?  I just wasn’t paying enough attention to the time of year it was when I was able to find the onion sets. Before I knew it they had all disappeared from the feed stores and even The Evil Empire.  I’m hoping they’ll show back up again for a fall planting but I don’t really think they will. 

  I don’t know why but folks around here just don’t really plant fall gardens.  Weird, really. But then who am I to talk.  We haven’t planted a fall garden since we moved here. It is hard to drag myself out in the sweltering heat we usually have to plant anything.

This year just might be different!  I planted another row (100 ft) of purple hull peas yesterday and have planted more lettuce and some spinach. 


 Once all the vine type plants keel over I’ll work on getting some things in those areas.  It shouldn’t be much longer as most are starting to die back already.

The corn did ok this year. It just takes so much room for so little corn.  We aren’t big corn eaters around here anymore because most all corn these days is GMO.  I’ll leave that discussion for another day. 

My dad sent this seed to us and has been growing it for a long long time.  It’s wonderfully sweet and juicy.  We put up 8 bags (2 cups each) of cut corn and about 30 whole ears in the freezer.  We also found out that the rabbits LOVE corn.  I wish I’d have taken pictures of them devouring it.

OK that’s enough to bore you to death for now.  I sit down sometimes and can’t think of a thing in the world to write about.  Then once I start I can’t seem to stop!  I’ve got some cucumber chips drying and they should be about done.  I’ve not done them before and am curious to try them. If they turn out good I’ll let ya’ll know!

9 Methods of Food Preservation You Need to Know

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9 Methods of Food Preservation You Need to Know If you’re looking for an introduction to the methods of food preservation, then you’re in luck. I’ve been posting some food preservation articles these past few weeks at SHTF Dad and it is obvious that its one of the SHTF prepping and homesteading topics which I […]

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SHTF Survival: 3 Steps to Find Edible Plants

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SHTF Survival: 3 Steps to Find Edible Plants Knowing the steps to find edible plants can spell the difference between life and death in a SHTF scenario. If you’re into survival training, camping, trekking, or just loves the outdoors, this SHTF Dad article will surely serve you well. Importance of Knowing the Steps to Find […]

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Vital Preparedness Planning Questions

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By Denis Korn

What Road Will You Choose to Take?

For those who have read many of my other posts you will discover that I very often use questions to stimulate and motivate reflection and action.  In the preparedness process there are two distinct elements or phases – the research, evaluation, discussion, planning, discerning phase – and the action, building, provisioning, doing phase.  As I have stated before many preparedness planners put the cart before the horse.  They act before they critically think, assess and reflect.  This often creates a situation where provisions and physical preparations are inadequate and ineffectual when a real emergency or disaster occurs.

Focused and effective questions not only lead to the creation of a solid foundation from which to build a successful preparedness program, these questions can be the guidance required for a continuing dialogue and navigating a beneficial preparedness process.  One of the most important articles I have written that elucidate the value of the questioning process is The 12 Crucial Questions of Preparedness Planning.  I encourage every serious preparedness planner to earnestly answer the questions in that article.

The following vital questions offer insight into a broader perspective of one’s preparedness viewpoint.  Some of these questions are new and some come from other posts that I have written.  They present an excellent starting point or continuing compass guiding the preparedness process.  They are not only valuable for individual consideration, but also an excellent basis for group discussion, workshops, presentations, family conversation, community awareness or stimulating the skeptical into action and responsibility.

VITAL PREPAREDNESS PLANNING QUESTIONS – To be answered individually or in a discussion group

  • Who do you trust?  Why?
  • Who do you rely on and where do you get the information and expertise from that determines your personal, spiritual, cultural, and political worldview?
  • Why do you think you should be prepared for the unexpected? – Or should you not?
  • Do you believe the government, local – state – national, will provide for you or rescue you during an emergency? – Do you really trust the government and others to take care of you during an emergency?
  • If the head-of-household, or you, are away from home – is your family prepared to cope and survive during an emergency? – Who will train and educate them?
  • An eminent emergency is announced – What do you do? – Are you prepared?
  • The grid just went down – Now what do you do?
  • A disaster has just occurred – What do you do? – Where do you go? – Do you stay or leave?
  • Have you prepared a list of provisions to always have on hand?  How many of those items do you have? – What condition are they in? – Are you willing to be responsible enough to take action and stock up? – What about a written preparedness plan? – What are the most important provisions you should always have on hand? – Can you take them with you if you have to evacuate?
  • What is your excuse for doing nothing and not taking any action to prepare for the unforeseen?
  • Can you go camping in your house for a week?  Are you willing to give it a try – before an emergency?
  • Who can help you develop an effective emergency preparedness plan? – Will you involve the whole family?
  • From 1 to 10 – 10 being the highest – What is your level of security?
  • When you plan for the unexpected – do you critically think and evaluate – or do you mindlessly and unconsciously react to whatever you hear or read?
  • What is your #1 emergency scenario?  #2 – #3 – Are you prepared for it?
  • Are you convinced that disasters will never happen to you?
  • Your wife’s – husband’s – daughter’s – son’s car breaks down on a remote country road (or anywhere for that matter) – its night – winter – deserted – Are they prepared to cope? – Do they have the necessary provisions?
  • Who is relying on you for guidance, reassurance and security during an emergency? – Are you up to the responsibility?
  • What triggering event must occur to motivate you to take preparedness seriously?
  • Are you spiritually and emotionally prepared to endure during a disaster?
  • When you research, evaluate, and explore during your preparedness planning process, can you discern the difference between reliable and dependable, and erroneous and untrustworthy information? – Where will you go and who will you seek out for truthful knowledge and trustworthy guidance?
  • What are the absolutely critical factors you feel you must address when developing your preparedness plan?
  • What would cause grocery shelves to be emptied?
  • What common and crucial items would be the first to disappear and become unavailable during an emergency?
  • Are you able to be honest with yourself when you answer these questions?

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Prepper Product Review: Solar Bag Water Purification

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SolarBag water purifier hiking prepper


This is one of the neatest products I have seen in awhile for water purification, mainly because of its ability for re-use and being very lightweight.

Now with many methods of water purification on the go, or in a bug out situation, they are either heavy, bulky, require batteries or make your water taste funny.

I have different methods of purifying water in my bug out bag, redundancy is the key.  It all comes down to time and weight, how much time do you have and how much weight can you carry.  Carbon filterer items work well, however they are bulky and take up weight, small iodine tabs work great and last a long time, however they will leave a unpleasant taste in your water, not a game changer, but it is still not pleasant.


The Solar Bag offers you the ability to not have to deal with weight, bulk OR taste.

The beauty of this is that empty it weighs less than a pound, thin and will fit easily in any pack and plus its reusable hundreds of times, and only requires sunlight to work!



-Tested by the University of Arizona, proven to filter out Viruses, Bacteria and Protozoa

-Up to 9 Liters of Water a day

-Can be Re-Used Hundreds of Times

-Will Work even with cloudy Skies


How it works is very simple.

1) Take water from a freshwater course, pour into the Solar Bag through the attached cloth filter

2) Lay Solar Bag flat in the Sun

3) Wait 2-3 Hours on a Sunny Day, 4-6 hours on a Cloudy Day (or if water is tea-colored)

4) Re-use as needed


The magic happens in the bag itself, inside is a nano polymer mesh inside the Solar Bag, under sunlight it activates the photochemical processes that destroys the contaminants in the water.



The Solar Bag may seem a little pricey coming in around $76 on Amazon, however you will not be using this on a daily basis, it is something that you will just set in your Bug Out Bag and leave it for a rainy day.  If you ever need it you wont have to worry about it having gone bad, as long as its daytime you can get water.





Want to help support the site? find out more here! Or just click the amazon link below, bookmark it and go there every time you shop on Amazon, it costs you nothing more, but they will kick back a portion of your purchase to the site to help run things smoothly and keep you informed!


Amazon GNP help




Waking Up America: A Fight For Your Second Amendment Rights

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“America! America! God mend thine ev’ry flaw; confirm thy soul in self-control, thy liberty in law.”
Excerpt from “America The Beautiful”
(Sherr, 77)

Our modern American society is, in essence, in it’s adolescence and has wandered far from its revolutionary roots. America the “great,” in infancy, was the spawn of exploration, revolution, desire for change, preparedness, tenacity, will, determination and an overall survivor-mindset. Founded on concepts such as liberty and law, America was the ultimate survivor. America knew how to overcome tumultuous odds and grew to be something that instilled pride in everyone that called themselves “American.” America had an immeasurable spirit of positive, forward direction.
There is a sense of urgency in the necessity for our modern nation to re-read these words, written by Katherine Lee Bates in 1893, later used in the anthem “America the Beautiful.” Words speak volumes. Words and phrases such as “self-control,” “liberty,” and “law” have a definite meaning and understanding that should not be easily debatable or misunderstood. And, yet, bring forth 2014, and one would rarely include the phrase “self-control” in lyrics intended to describe America, the supersized-McCapital of the world, the instant-gratification nation.

This once great nation of integrity, ability, perseverance and strength both mentally and physically, has germinated into a society comprised of sleeping citizens. While the media and other activist groups are attempting to teach us to be materialistic, egocentric, and narcissistic, we are becoming intentionally distracted and disconnected from our roots. This systemic-disconnect equates to a modern culture of lost identity, disappointment, disillusion and ultimately citizen disarmament as we continue to follow the masses and sleep at the wheel. 

Our founders had to work together with a sense of community that is non-existent today. Our modern, technological gadgetry and shattered focus has successfully distracted us to the point of indifference to who we are, where we are, where we are going and even what could happen to us if we don’t wake up.

Where are we now?

America we must stand together and let no one attempt to break our true American spirit. For many, the skills and the passion are no longer in-tune with our former greatness and grassroots. We, sadly, are becoming a nation of self-entitled, disconnected individuals in a mass-pursuit of pleasure over planning. Some are content to live blindly in the present with relatively little regard for the possibilities of tomorrow. They do not plan ahead. They do not believe they have to work hard for anything as they assume that things will always come easily or someone will spare them or save them from their own foolish choices. They have completely lost connection with what it means to truly work for something. They have lost their will and devalued tenacity.

Americans are now being taught as children that we are all winners with little to no effort. We all get a trophy if we were present and participated and everything is fair. There are no losers. Everyone wins equally. How did our pioneer roots and previous hard-working, predecessors that built this country with blood, sweat and tears culminate in “participation ribbons?” Americans are busily raising young Americans with the modern philosophy of “life is always fair” and “always equitable” and “everyone plays nice.”

We are now forced to debate, protect and defend our own second amendment right to bear arms. We are being taught early that people all play fair, life is filled with love, squish and bubble-gum drops. This is unequivocally not true and by giving up your arms you risk giving up your own freedoms and safety. And, when bad people do bad things with a weapon, we are being taught that the weapon is the bad guy and that guns themselves bring evil. Where is the accountability on the bad guy? While the media focuses your attention on their anti-gun agenda, your second amendment rights are being challenged. Your own right to defend yourself is in jeopardy.

 One evening of watching the world news and we can quickly surmise that the world IS a dangerous place. We do not have to be afraid, or always expecting trouble, but it would be a disservice to not inform ourselves that there are dangers in this world. Our founders allowed us the right to take care of ourselves should we need to. The modern world is different, but it is not safer. We would be even more foolish now than in our country’s formative years to trust that the government or other agencies will always take care of us if we are in trouble. In chaos, whether that chaos is driven by a natural disaster or a man-made disaster, when it gets bad enough…watch the news… are on your own after a point.

Historically, life is rarely fair and rarely does everyone “play nice.” So, where does this new philosophy get us?  No one knows the long-term ramifications yet, but we do have a lot of those “participation ribbons” hanging on the walls to prove to ourselves and others that we are “special” even though we didn’t do much of anything to earn them. We just showed up and we were given a ribbon for our sheer presence. 

The world doesn’t function that way. The business world doesn’t even function that way. What are we really teaching? We are teaching our American youth that they do not have to try, they do not have to have the guts to gain the glory. They do not have to fight for anything not even their own constitutional rights. This is nonsensical. Hard work, grit and tenacity are what America was founded upon and if we want to remain a great country, it is imperative that we get back to valuing the qualities, characteristics and respect for “sweat equity” that we once all shared.

The pioneers and the modern-day survivalists:

Survivalists, preppers and others that plan and prepare and recognize that the world is a wonderful, beautiful place that has inherent dangers and risks are more in sync with our founders than most other distracted, Americans. Perhaps if catastrophe occurs, these characteristics and this gumption will come out in all Americans again. Survivalists recognize the risks in neutering ourselves via over-confidence and lack of preparation, skill and training and buying into a philosophy of “someone else will protect me,” “someone else will save me” or worse yet, “nothing bad will ever happen to me.” America would not be here as it is today had our founders sat back and expected everything would just work and the only thing required of them is to just show up.

Americans have had a nice ride, but like all good things, if you take that easy-ride for granted, you can lose it. We need a country to be proud of again. We need to be the epitome of the “American spirit” again. We need to “confirm thy soul in self-control” again by recognizing and responding to the need to get in touch with our American foundation: respect for our constitution, respect for hard work, respect for planning ahead, respect for preparation and then, and only then, (and only occasionally) should we sit back in our lazy chair, setting up our fifth smart phone and stuffing our face with a Big-Mac.

Read more and visit my blog and comment at:

Lyrics at top of essay: Written by Katherine Lee Bates
Excerpted from: Sherr, Lynn. “America the Beautiful; The Stirring True Story behind Our Nation’s Favorite Song.” New York Public Affairs, 2001. Print.

Training is Everything!!

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Training is EVERYTHING!

“Practice makes perfect”. Not really, as a Navy SEAL and friend once pointed out to me “Perfect Practice makes Perfect”. For someone like me, with 34 years of experience in the field of isolated personnel recovery and survival, this statement was prophetic. I had never thought about there being “Bad” practices but there are and it answered a lot of questions which often haunted me.

Being properly trained is the key to success in any operation, from business to survival the training you receive is the basis for your success. Unfortunately, in the survival world training can be the difference between life and death. We talk about the 5 “Ps”; prior preparation prevents poor performance but maybe we should focus on 6 “Ps” Prior proper preparation prevents poor performance. And this Preparation should focus on Perfect Training!

I observe peoples equipment and preparation all the time and I read every magazine and article I run across on survival and prepping. I also watch different episodes on television and listen to the “experts” who profess to have all the answers on what to do if you are isolated and living off the land. Whether it is an urban environment or field they all have one thing in common, they eventually give out information which will not work or will flat get you killed.
An example of this is an article I read concerning fire construction where the “expert” ended the article with the statement “be prepared to fail”. What? You just told the audience in a national survival magazine that they could fail to save their own lives? Sounds like you need more “perfect practice”. I cannot think of a situation, outside of not having any equipment or nothing to burn, where a fire can’t be built. Sleet, snow, horizontal rain, high winds, one hand, hypothermic these are all the times you need a fire. If your situation isn’t life threatening then you’re building a camp fire, not an emergency fire. So, where is the disconnect?


This disconnect comes from the instruction and the practice. In both instances people tend to take short cuts, employ bad habits or listen to people who frankly are clueless. As professional SERE Instructors we spend years researching and perfecting methods of self-preservation. I all things we focus on what it takes and how long it takes, to do a specific task, in order to save your life. In all tasks there are principles; principles that when not followed cause failure. Whether it is urban survival, surveillance detection, camouflage or trapping game if the principles are not followed then failure does.

So to compensate we begin to build redundancy in our equipment at the cost of weight and the possibility of physical fatigue. We also begin to overlook necessary equipment to make room for the redundant. For six months of training, in the art of survival, myself and my team mates lit our cigarettes with a ferrocerium rod (then known as a metal match), lived out of a poncho or natural shelter, used only a canteen cup to collect and prepare food and had two knives; one straight and one folding. We here taught to maintain our equipment and not to lose it because that could mean death.

I’m not saying that everyone, who wants to learn how to survive, needs to go through the painful and long training that I did. However, the type of training and who is giving the training should be evaluated. There are many questions you should be asking before you get involved with buying equipment or attending training, but the first one should be to ask yourself “why am I doing this.” Is it because of natural disasters and I’m waiting for help? Is it because I’m waiting for National upheaval or a meteor strike or am I just wanting to take care of myself if I fall down and get injured on a weeklong hike?

All these questions come into play when choosing the right training format or equipment. It may be that you only need some medical training from the local Red Cross or it could be that you need advanced survival training under tactical conditions. Regardless of the type of training you require you need to ask the facility you are training under what their credentials are.


  1. In the US only the United States Air Force has a designated career field built around “Global Survival”. All military courses and documents are based on information complied and researched by the Joint Services SERE Agency (JSSA). The only information which doesn’t come from there is based on Native Americans, aboriginals and Mountain Men. However, JSSA researches, studies and applies some of these also.  Home grown courses may not be following current or even safe doctrine so ask for qualifications.
  2. Is the school technology driven or is it primitive means driven? If your looking for a school which teaches you all the new toys, fine. If your looking for a course which trains you to live like a native then good. In either case enjoy yourself and have fun. However, if you’re looking to save your life just keep in mind that Natives don’t build a friction fire in the rain and batteries die in the heat and freeze in the cold. So find out the focus of the school. If you want to survive you have to use technology where it is best suited and primitive means where they are best suited. A good training school will teach the best of both. 
  3. Don’t get caught up in the hype! Whether it’s TV, Articles, movies or conversations don’t get caught up in the hype. Do the research and pick what fits your needs. I understand the need for advertising, but it’s only designed to do one thing….sell something. Remember that and also remember your life depends on your decision. If they are selling equipment, look at the quality. Someone who takes the protection of life seriously is not going to handle substandard equipment regardless of the profit margin.  
  4. Look at the equipment used by the instructor. Is it for show? Is it the same as what he/she is trying to sell? For example, the instructor may have a giant Bowie for the entire world to see but it never comes out of its sheath, ask yourself why? Same thing applies for demonstrations and practices. A good instructor should never ask a student to do something he has not demonstrated with GREAT proficiency and with the same type of tools as the student. “Beware the Instructor who shows you a perfectly constructed natural shelter but doesn’t have time to demonstrate how he made it”.   
  5. Good Survival Instructors are very opinionated and grounded in what works and what doesn’t. This is based on research AND experience. The best advertised knife in the world may fail and the most popular pack on the market may rip so you may NOT see your Instructor with the latest and greatest gear. In fact he may be carrying a well, worn pack and a old knife. So if you ask them their opinion on what the best piece of equipment is you may not get the answer you are expecting! 
  6. Watch for POSERS! Just because they wear the beret doesn’t mean they are “Special”.

Once you have asked yourself all the right questions and have chosen you’re training facility or Instructor go into the training with an open mind. All of us have our built in paradigms on how something is to be done, but in this case try to put them aside and learn from scratch. Skills taught right and learned right will always serve you better. Also remember that survival is just that, SURVIVAL and skills which are not proven under adverse conditions are no skills at all. So everything you learn should have gone through a litmus test and not just created as “woodsy goods to know”. After all we are not camping, we are surviving! Remember there are no special tactics just perfected principles practiced over and over again.

“Perfect Practice makes Perfect” will always ring in my ears.

Overall preparation for what the world can throw at us is not that overwhelming but it does take a little effort. USI has a wealth of information, equipment and training for everyone about all forms of mitigation so visit our web site at and if you have a need feel free to call!

USI Understands that Survival isn’t learned from books but real world experience. This is just one area which makes Universal Survival Innovations unique in the world of training and equipment.

Check out our website at

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Author Ben Barr is a 30+ year SERE Specialist who has been a curriculum developer for the USAF Survival School, USAF Water Survival School, USAF Air Mobility Command, USMC and USN

Connect with Ben on Linkedin


The Practical Prepper – Book Review

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The Practical Prepper

A Common-Sense Guide to Preparing for Emergencies

Book Review, by Cynthia J. Koelker, MD,

Did you ever wish you could find a single book with common-sense prepping advice you could actually implement?

The Practical Prepper is just that, a must-have read for both neophytes and seasoned preppers alike. The writing is down-to-earth, easy to understand, with sections logically organized according to expected needs.  Thus delightful book includes chapters on food and water storage, medical concerns, emergency heating, lighting, and cooking, sanitation, communication, fuel storage, shelter, and much more.  It is not a wilderness survival guide, but rather a realistic approach to what a normal family can and should so to weather a crisis and safeguard loved ones.

Throughout the book the authors offer multiple solutions to common problems, recognizing that one answer cannot fit every situation or budget.  For example, Chapter 8 discusses “Water Disinfection and Purification,” and includes sections on boiling, pasteurization, chlorine, calcium hypochlorite, iodine, solar water disinfection, as well as numerous types of filters.  Costs are discussed as well, allowing you to choose whether to invest in a $1500 Katadyn Expedition filter, or perhaps a $25 LifeStraw Personal Water Filter.  I especially enjoyed the discussion of “Emergency Cooking,” which stresses safety and inventiveness.  Who’d have thought you could make an oven from a paper box or an inner tube?

Lest prepping for every contingency appears an overwhelming task, just get started is the message of Chapter 1.  No one can accomplish it all in a day.  The book makes it easy to take small, practical steps toward improving your odds of survival should disaster strike.  Devoting only half an hour a week to emergency preparedness will put you far ahead of the unprepared masses.  But the authors don’t want to leave your neighbors in the dark.  Community is important now and will be so in the future.  An entire chapter is devoted to moving beyond your immediate family to helping your local community prepare.

Another major focus of The Practical Prepper is organization.  It does little good to have a dozen flashlights if you can’t find even one.  Where are your legal documents?  Where is your hand-crank radio?  How should your food be organized?  Again the authors offer many ideas from which you can pick and choose to fit your personal goals and budget.

Lastly, as a physician let me draw attention to Chapter 11 entitled “Medical – The Doctor Is Out.”  This section is a nice summary of concerns that must be addressed when no medical care is available, and includes discussions of prescription medications, first-aid supplies, over-the-counter preparations, keeping a personal medical information record, antibiotics, quarantine, and more.  Educating yourself is also stressed, from CPR to Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT).  Everyone would do well to heed their common sense advice, then consider moving to more advanced training once the basics are in place.

In summary, you can’t go wrong acquiring this handy survival manual.  Consider it an investment in your future and that of your children, when (not if) a crisis arises.

The Practical Prepper: A Common-Sense Guide to Preparing for Emergencies

Sick Puppy! Meningitis?!

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I got clever and wrote a couple of articles ahead of time and set them to publish at later times in WordPress.  I figured it would give me some time away from the computer for work, family, and homestead responsibilities.  As it turns out, I’m not one for automation.  I screwed up on some setting so nothing has posted in weeks.  Live and learn!!!

Very soon I will have articles up about dehydrating peppers and canning tomatoes.  A friend from work and I are going to jumping on the vermiculture bandwagon, so there will be info posted as we learn that.

On the puppy front, we’ve had some problems with Maevis.  For those following along, she is now a touch over 4 months old.  Over the weekend of the 4th of July, we had to take her to the animal ER at 10pm.  She was very disoriented and wobbly.  I was horrified that she ate some toxin or poison.  After $370 and several early morning hours, the vet thinks she aspirated vomit and caused lung inflammation.  Two weeks later, she presented the same symptoms, only much worse.  She actually fell off the bed and couldn’t get back up. She would yelp if anyone touched her.  Back we go!!

This round at the animal ER was a late night ordeal on a work night.  And it cost another $330.  This time the diagnosis was a little more firm.  We opted for the Distemper test just to rule it out, but the vet was very confident in the problem being Meningitis.  Apparently, the lung problem was an infection that decided to go nasty on us.  After a few days, Maevis is starting to act like a puppy again.  We’re doing a ton of pills twice a day.  Two antibiotics, a steroid, and pain medication.  It’s been a long, expensive road, but I think we’ll have a healthy puppy again.


How to Build Your Own Alcohol Stove (DIY Solo Stove)

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diy alcohol stoveOne item you will want to keep in your bug out bag is an alcohol burning stove. Of course, you can buy a solo stove here if you don’t mind spending around $75. Or you can just go and make your own alcohol stove and save yourself a bunch of money that could be better spent elsewhere. Whether its for bugging out or just camping, having one of these will make your life easier.

Follow the link below to learn…

How To Build Your Own Alcohol Stove

New! Rock Climbing episode releases Monday!

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Hey!  So it’s summer, the time of outdoor fun.  Next week I’m heading to Utah to meet my brother, a nationally ranked collegiate rock climber who not only coaches his own competitive rock climbing team, but designs and has patented products for climbers.  I’m a climber as well, but it’s been a while since I’ve been on the rock, so he’s going to give me a refresher.  Of course, he’s a way better climber than I am and loves to press my buttons, so this should be interesting.  Here’s a little preview.

And on top of all that, if you remember from our Skydiving Special, I’m afraid of heights.  Oh boy.

Find out more about David and his company, MAD Innovations.

Politics and Preppers Podcast Episode 51

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The TrackingPoint AR Series Precision Guided Firearm. A Prepper gun you might ask? Not in my opinion, it just cost way to much $9500 is what I found but I’m not sure the average Prepper can even get one. Impressive weapon yes but at that price it just cost to … Continue reading

Last Day To Enter GIVEAWAY.

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 The Forsaking Home Book Series   GIVEAWAY. Click here to enter.   Contest ends at midnight tonight.  Good Luck to you all!!

Shall Not Be Infringed: A Defense of Our Second Amendment Right to Defend Ourselves

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“I ask who are the militia? They consist now of the whole people, except a few public officers.” ~Virginia’s U.S. Constitution ratification convention, 1788. (LaPierre, 2009, p. 158).

Controversy is abundant over the second amendment and the verbiage in the amendment has become one of the most debated, argued and misinterpreted pieces of our constitution. The Second Amendment was written in 1789 by Congress and in 1791 it became ratified by the States and became a permanent fixture in our original Bill of Rights.

The Second Amendment was intended to protect and forever preserve all citizens’ rights to individually protect themselves and their lives. This right of self-protection stated:
“A well-regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed” (Barton, 20ll, p. 5).

Over time, anti-gun enthusiasts have taken pieces of history, pieces of the amendment and out-of-context literature then used this information to suit their agendas. The words “shall not be infringed” are immensely self-explanatory. There is no other way to interpret “shall not be infringed,” but to declare and state that this “right” as stated, cannot be broken, undermined, encroached upon or any unauthorized use of the terms being restated. To infringe is to “encroach upon,” to “restate” or to “break the terms of” and ultimately to “undermine” the original intent. Those that want to argue that you do not have the right to keep and bear arms are arguing that you do not have the right to defend and protect yourself. This is a direct infringement upon “the right of the people to keep and bear arms.”

Later, anti-gun activists have argued that “the people” may not be “you or I.” They also argue that “the people” means the “socially organized people” such as the military, police and government. This is absolutely taking our history out of context. These rights were written into the constitution in order to protect “you and I” from the infringement of those “socially organized people” or “others” that would threaten our livelihood (Barton, 2011, p. 6-13).

One of the most utilized pieces of legal script used in the origination of the Second Amendment was known as “Blackstone’s Commentaries on the Laws” (Barton, 2011, p. 15). This commentary became a source for America’s legal system, attorneys and judges as well. The Blackstone Commentary was first introduced in 1766 in America and the commentary clearly stated that citizens have rights to own and use weapons for their own self-defense. It further stated that this is a “natural right” to be used for resistance as well as individual self-preservation in the event that society’s laws are “insufficient to restrain violence of oppression” (Barton, 2011, p. 15).  This was a three part course of action. First, the citizen has the right when their rights have been violated or attacked to justice in the court of laws, secondly, the right to petition a grievance to the government and thirdly, the right of owning, having and using fire arms for self-preservation and self-defense (p. 15).

These citizen militias “being necessary to the security of a free state” were the reasoning behind the historical landscape under which the constitution and the amendment were written and intended. The “free state” was a priority of the times so that our future freedom from the risk of a government that was not of the people, by the people or for the people would not be threatened. This “free state” concept is still a priority as is self-defense and the right to defend our own lives. Our founding fathers were suspicious of the motivations of government for good reason. One of Jefferson’s famous quotes sums up this belief: “The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort to protect themselves against tyranny in Government” (Pratt, 1995, xii). There lies the number one reason to continue to fight for your right to keep and bear arms given to you by one of our founding fathers himself. He and the founders of the time knew what history has shown many times over: that governments with too much control over the people can and will become dangerous and that the people may, as a last resort, have to defend themselves. The most frightening thing about gun control is when the government itself wants to disarm you. You must ask yourself why? Our founding fathers didn’t want to disarm us. We had fought too hard to get where we were and they knew we were a necessary entity.

These rights were so important to our founders that our early history is peppered with examples of how undoubtedly vital gun ownership was in our history. In 1658, Virginia required every home own a working firearm and if you didn’t own one, after 1673, the government would provide one for you. In 1676, the law stated that you must carry it with you everywhere that you go. In 1632, the Plymouth Colony required that every citizen bear arms at all times or they would be fined. In 1639, no one was allowed entry to any public gatherings without their firearm in Newport Colony. Later, Connecticut added fines for failure to carry weapons and powder, then Georgia added fines and others followed suit. These laws are evidence that the government not only valued well-armed citizens, but demanded it. They considered every citizen a member of the militia. Every citizen was part of “the public defense” system (Barton, 2011, p. 16).

This brings us to the meaning of “a well-regulated militia.” The English militia system under Elizabeth I became a commonly understood “concept of a universally armed people ready to stand in defense of their nation” (Pratt, 1995, p. 7). In the context for which “a well-regulated militia” was written, this “militia” was the citizens of America and the “regulation” was the legal requirement of this militia to keep and bear arms. The citizens of America were “the well-regulated militia.” In the “Centinel” it was written that “a well-regulated militia” is “composed of the body of the people” (Halbrook, 1994, p. 80). The militia was comprised of the people and the people were considered necessary to the “security of the state.”

Why are the people no longer trusted or considered necessary?

“Americans have the right and advantage of being armed-unlike citizens of other countries whose governments are afraid to trust the people with arms.”

~James Madison, the father of the Second Amendment  (LaPierre, 2009, p. 6).

Once again, we are reminded that we cannot always rely upon our own government to have our best interests in mind or to protect us in the event that we need to be protected. As was the case in our history, we may need to protect ourselves and it is vital to any self-reliant individual that he or she know how to take care of and defend themselves should the situation call for it. Other evidence in our history that the government may not have our back as we would like to believe is made obvious by the following quote:
“To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them.” Stated by George Mason in “his suspicion of government” (Pratt, 1995, p. xiii).

There is no doubt that our world is every bit as volatile and dangerous as it was in these vital formative years. To disarm citizens today is to say that the citizens are no longer valued and recognized as individuals who have the right to defend and protect themselves. Citizens are no longer respected as being a valuable piece of the public defense system as we once were. Our “rights of the people” are being infringed upon in a dangerous way. The government, media and gun control activists would have you believe that owning weapons leads to more violence. This again, is spinning of facts to suit agendas. The right to keep and bear arms and the right to carry them may in itself function as a crime deterrent. Criminals are unaware which citizens may be armed and which citizens may be able to protect themselves. This makes it more difficult to target people for the criminal. Those who choose not to own or carry weapons stand to benefit from those that do for this reason (Lott, 2010, p. 275).

Crime is a choice made by people. Owning guns does not make you commit crimes. And, criminals would be the primary citizens that would gain control of weapons should they be taken from the rest of us anyway. There is ample evidence of crimes committed against people via knives, bludgeoning, falls, drowning and many other methods. In absence of gun ownership or accessibility, where there is criminal intent, there will still be a crime committed using a different method. If someone intends to take a life, they will find another method if they cannot access a firearm. Most people if asked, would rather be shot than bludgeoned or stabbed. Taking citizens’ rights to protect themselves via a firearm, will not keep bad people from doing bad things, but the right to keep and bear arms will allow some of us to protect ourselves from these bad people doing bad things. The individual right to protect myself  is an inalienable right. The Constitution, The Bill of Rights and The Second Amendment simply acknowledge that right and declare that my right shall not be infringed.

“The Notion that the Second Amendment somehow belongs to a small number of gun rights advocates is simply wrong. The Second Amendment belongs to all Americans.”

(Cornell, 2006, p. 218).

Works Cited:

Barton, David. “The Second Amendment: Preserving the Inalienable Right of Individual Self-Protection.” 1st Edition. 4th Printing. WallBuilders. 2011

Cornell, Saul. “A Well Regulated Militia: The Founding Fathers and the Origins of Gun Control in America.” Oxford University Press. 2006.

Halbrook, Stephen P. “That Every Man Be Armed: The Evolution of a Constitutional Right.” The Independent Institute. 1994.

LaPierre, Wayne. “The Essential Second Amendment Guide.” World NetDaily. 2007, 2009.

Lott, John R. Jr. “More Guns Less Crime: Understanding Crime and Gun Control Laws.” Third Edition. The University of Chicago Press. 2010.

Pratt, Larry. “Safeguarding Liberty: The constitution & Citizen Militias.” Legacy Communications. 1995.

Survival Scenario and Training Videos For Preppers

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Survival Scenarios your may not have thought of. I found this series of videos on YouTube from SouthernPrepper1. I’m putting them up here to help the Prepper group i’m working with. I figured all they have to do is click a link in the email I’m send out to each … Continue reading

A New Disease Discovered.

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Preservitis- A New Disorder Identified?

There is a newly recognized disorder that has come to the attention of people across the country.  Although this disorder has been around for many years and for awhile having almost disappeared 
it now has an identifiable name.

 That name is Preservitis. Symptoms include, but are not limited to the uncontrollable urge to can, dehydrate, freeze or otherwise preserve every fruit and vegetable that come across the path of the affected individual.  This disorder may become more intense as the summer garden season winds to a close.  Person’s with this affliction have also been known to try unconventional recipes so as to save every known part of said fruits and vegetables.

   There is no known cure for this disorder at this time.  The prescribed treatment is to let the symptoms run their course.

To alleviate symptoms, it is recommended to allow the affected individuals to pursue their urges to can, dehydrate freeze foods until the symptoms have dissipated.  It appears that once they have found that all fruits and vegetables have been attended to, the affected individuals return to a semi-normal state of mind.

Studies have shown that symptoms will usually ease off as the summer winds to a close 

WARNING-  In most patients these urges WILL return year after year.   Researchers believe that Preservitis will become more prevalent as society begins to sense a growing need for self-sustained living.

Harnessing Fear In Survival Situations: How To Use Fear To Create Change

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“Everyone experiences fear. Do not allow fear to make you inactive. Activity harnesses fear and uses it as a catalyst toward change.”  
~K.M. Frost
In any survival situation, whether that situation is “daily life survival”, wilderness survival or surviving a catastrophic event, fear and how you manage fear, may be the number one predictor of whether you get through the event. Fear can be crippling, leaving you frozen, inactive and unable to think or act coherently. Fear can also be life-saving and give you the heightened mental awareness necessary to move you into action. Everyone experiences fear. Differing events create different levels of fear in each individual. What may instill trauma and terror in you, may be fascinating and exciting to me. And, while you may enjoy sky-diving and swimming with sharks, I’ll pass. 
Survivology broken down:
 “Ology” is a suffix that means “the study of” and to “survive” is to endure, get through, and overcome a situation. Survivology is the study of survival and the ability to get through stressful, changing circumstance. That circumstance can be bad things that happen in your daily life or more serious things that disrupt your entire world as you know it. Survivors often have particular mindsets, qualities or actions in common. And, we can all learn a great deal from studying the way that people who have survived being lost in the wilderness or diagnosed with cancer behaved or thought during and throughout the circumstance. 
In facing similar circumstance, how do some people come through events empowered while others either perish or are severely damaged from trauma? There are many factors that go into the study of survival situations and sometimes it is a combination of behaviors, actions and luck. None of us can know for certain how we will behave in a survival situation without having been through one. But, one thing you can know with certainty is that if you have the ability to harness fear to keep you mentally active you are more likely to get through everything from job loss, divorce, and health issues to being lost and cataclysmic events.
Fear can be crippling or it can carry you into a level of functioning that enables you to endure things you never thought possible. When faced with a survival situation, you will be frightened. Harness that fear and use it as a catalyst toward change and you will more likely find yourself a survivor rather than a victim of circumstance. 
How do we harness fear?
Let’s start with a common life situation: You have children, jobs, a mortgage, more bills than you can shake a stick at, you are out of shape and have been in a long-term relationship that is beginning to go south. You find out that your partner or spouse is leaving you. You are panic-stricken. You are thinking you will never make it through this. You don’t have enough money. You don’t know how it will affect the children. There are many unknowns which terrify you. You wonder who will want you as you haven’t dated in years and haven’t been actively putting effort into your physical appearance. You find yourself going through the stages of grief. You plead with them to stay. You go through denial and bargaining before settling into depression and allowing your fear to cripple you. 
This is a classic example of a life situation that can either cripple or empower you. The inability to harness the fear and use it as a catalyst through the circumstance and as a change creator can leave you forever damaged. You may never love again or trust again. You may never be able to have a healthy relationship where you feel safe. Or, you can use the fear of the unknown to spawn your ability to face the adversity head on and actively do something, anything, but actively working to keep your mind busy and forward moving.
The same situation faced with a survival mindset and the ability to harness fear:
You are still frightened because change is always scary, but you are keeping yourself busy. You begin to list your fears and you know that money, the children, your ability to find another mate and your ability to move past the anguish of losing someone you love are high on your fear list. You then begin to face these fears in a very matter-of-fact manner. In looking at the monster under the bed, you are now less afraid of that monster. Now, your monster has a face and a name. You can now begin to strategically use that fear to face these monsters and plan your way through them using activity. You begin job hunting for a better paying job, or you take on a part-time job. You begin to have honest and encouraging conversations with your children and you help them adjust in the healthiest way possible through the adversity. You role-model someone who is strong and can do this. You begin to believe in yourself. You begin to work out and even though you can’t afford the gym yet, you do what you can at home. You begin to look into downsizing your home. One by one, you use activity as a mechanism to handle your fear and slowly, but surely you begin to get through it. Once through it, you are empowered and have a new-found sense of self-esteem and self-reliance that you never had before. 
What did you learn from facing the adversity?
You learned that the worst thing you can do is to do nothing. You learned how to use activity to avoid wallowing in your circumstance and to avoid freezing and becoming a victim of your circumstance. You learned that you are strong. You learned that activity is like a brain-aid that keeps your mind active and keeps you forward moving. You learned that you do have what it takes to survive bad or traumatic events and have gained skill in using that adversity to become a survivor and to be empowered. 
This same concept of using activity to harness fear and create change can be utilized in extreme situations as well. Practice this idea and this philosophy in your behavior in your day-to-day circumstance until it becomes habitual nature. When faced with adversity, your brain will more quickly move into activity mode and problem solving mode as you slowly modify your behavior under stress. Survivors of various wilderness survival situations have one very common bond: they kept their mind active, they didn’t allow themselves to drown in their fear, they used that fear to create change even if that change was simply a mental shift. That mental shift may be the change that saves your life or gets you through.

fear management

Forsaking Home Book Review and GIVEAWAY!

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I really wanted to sit down and take the time to properly review the first book of The Survivalist Series written by A. American.  The fourth book in the series  is now available at Amazon and on the authors website. There is a kindle/electronic  version too if you prefer using an e-reader. 

 As busy as I’ve been with things here on the home front I almost passed up the opportunity to read this series. I like reading post- SHTF books.  I’m half way through the second book “Surviving Home” and I have to tell you it might even be better than the the first book  first book in the series “Going Home” which is a real page turner as well and will leave you ready to crack open the next book in the series.

The only thing that had me wondering through the whole first book “Going Home” was Morgans “get home bag”  That thing must have weighed a ton what with all the supplies he was able to carry in his pack.  This book reminded me somewhat of the James Rawles first book which was really descriptive but  with a deeper look at just how one might react being stranded 250 miles from home.  All in all I’m really enjoying reading this series.  

Here’s the amazon description of the newest release. ( I’m looking forward to reading it too.)

Book 4 of The Survivalist Series
They survived the collapse, but can they survive the aftermath?

Morgan Carter has weathered the weeks after the collapse of the nation’s power grid, reuniting with his family and ensuring their safety, but his struggle isn’t over yet. Carter must focus on survival in an increasingly unstable society—but the challenges he faces are beyond his wildest imagination.

Meanwhile, the enclosed quarters of the nearby government-run refugee camp make for an environment where injury, assault and murder are the norm. As Jess creates trouble within the camp, Sarge and his crew plot to take down the entire establishment.

From the author of the hit Survivalist Series books, Forsaking Home is an action-packed adventure that depicts the harrowing possibilities of a world gone awry, and the courage it takes to protect what matters most.

EDITED (PLEASE READ THE INSTRUCTIONS CAREFULLY)  I tried to make this as easy as possible folks.

 If you would like a chance to win the entire series it’s really simple to do.  Just hit the “follow” button here on the blog and leave a comment. The button to push is the one just under the Popular Posts.  If you are already a follower of Bacon and Eggs (that means you have hit the follow button before, folks) just leave a comment letting me know.  Make sure you enter before this coming Friday July 25th for a chance to win the entire series.  I’ll be picking the winner on Saturday. 

If you are the lucky winner you will need to contact me no later than Monday July 28th with your name and address.  If you miss the due date I’ll be picking a second winner.

This is a US and Canada only contest.  Hey I didn’t make those rules….  Good Luck everyone.

George W. Sears – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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George W. Sears – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia: George Washington Sears (December 2, 1821 – May 1, 1890) was a sportswriter for Forest and Stream magazine in the 1880s and an early conservationist. His stories, appearing under the pen name, “Nessmuk” popularized self-guided canoe camping tours of the Adirondack lakes in open, lightweight solo canoes and what is today called ultralight camping.

DC Tweetup?

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About a week from now, a number of #SMEM folks will be converging on Washington D.C. to attend the White House Innovation for Disaster Response & Recovery Day on Tuesday, July 29th.

And, if youve ever met me, you know that I love to meet folks that Ive only chatted with on Twitter or other social media platforms. Because, while chatting over Twitter is great, its only the beginning of our potential friendship. There are connections, memories and just plain awesome things that happen when youre able to share a hug over your favorite beverage.

So, we cant let this opportunity go by without aiming to connect as many #SMEM folks as possible. If you are heading to Washington D.C. or you live close enough to visit us tourists, fill out the following form so that I can get a headcount of who all might be available to get together. Its also tremendously important for making restaurant reservations since group dining in D.C. can be a little bit tricky.

Once I have some reservations in place, Ill jet an email to everyone who has RSVPed. Of course, if you dont RSVP, you can likely catch up with us on Twitter on the 28th or 29th, but it might be standing room only for you.

Hope to see you there! If not, Im sure you can watch us all tweeting under whatever hashtag organically comes to be. I know Ill have #GirlInTheCity going and I suspect #WHsmem or something else will get cross-tweeted to the #SMEM tag so yall can join the fun from wherever you are.


Cheryl Bledsoe (@cherylble)


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Frontier Recipes – Page 4: Hardtack

2 cups stone ground flour
1 cup water

Combine the flour and water. Knead until smooth. Sprinkle some flour on a smooth surface and roll the dough flat until it is 1/4 inch thick. Cut biscuits out with a can or a glass making each biscuit about 3-4 inches in diameter. Poke holes into each biscuit with a fork. Place on a floured cookie sheet. It should come out hard and dry. Bake at 400 F for 35-45 minutes.

Ash Cakes

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Frontier Recipes – Page 4: Ash Cakes

1 cup white cornmeal
1/2 cup flour (optional)
1/2 tsp. salt

Mix dry ingredients. Add enough cold water to make a firm dough. Form the dough into thin cakes. Clear coals from an area of the campfire and lay the cakes on the hot earth. Rake coals and ash over the cakes and let them bake for about five minutes. Test for doneness by thumping the cake with a spoon handle or stick. A hollow ringing sound indicates doneness.

Please Burglarize Me!

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Please Burglarize Me! | Community sites such as FaceBook, Google , and LinkedIn, among others, ask for quite a bit of personal information. They want to know where you went to high school, where you’ve worked, and your religious and political leanings. They want know your kids’ names, your socio-economic background, and who your friends are. This is not new. FaceBook’s prying into our personal lives and sharing that with advertisers has made the mainstream media’s news for years now. The same is true for Google’s tendency to sift through our emails and collect our search terms so they can proffer more targeted ads and sell our “aggregated” information. We freely give this information away so that we can better “connect” with old friends and make new acquaintances.

Outdoor Canning Station

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Since it’s raining today I get one of those things called a day off!  What it really means is that I’ve got time to show you guys the “new” outdoor kitchen site Mars put together.  He moved it off of the old houses porch and back behind it instead because it gets shade there most all day long. The back side of the old porch also works to help as a windbreak from the southern winds we get in the summer.  I was having problems with keeping the stove lit when the winds were blowing even with the “windbreaks” he added to the stove.  Those are the sheet metal parts hung on the front, back and side of the stove.

He used some of the  bricks left from the old house to make a pad for the stove. 

Leveling out the ground to get started

 This way not only is the stove level but it won’t be sinking into the dirt in the long run.  

 The black mat came from the bed of the diesel truck I wrecked
It makes it easier to walk on if for example it’s been raining and the grounds a little wet. 


 I’ve been needing a table for some workspace for awhile.  I’ve looked around several places for tables and even the camping tables many places carry now, but on an income of $900 a month even though they really aren’t that expensive there was always something that we needed more.  

Mars decided to make a work table from one of the pallets he’d been saving.  Notice the whole top has slats unlike most pallets.  The legs are part of one of the old cedars that we cut down here a couple of years ago.  He set the posts and also used the top of the porch for even more stability.

   I just love this stove.  With the high pressure BTU’s it heats to boiling in no time at all and stays at pressure like it should.  The old set up I had worked but it took forever to heat to boiling and then I was constantly adjusting the fire to try and keep it at the correct pressure for canning. 

   Oh and the table is totally level too! (Mars wouldn’t have it any other way) The table makes the whole canning process SO much easier!  I just get everything prepped and ready, get all the jars, lids, rings, etc lined up and it’s good to go.  

We use a tarp to cover the stove in the summer when it’s not in use and move it to the barn during the winter. 

 The outdoor sink is just a few feet away but  there is also a hose I can use to fill the canners, wash my hands, rinse off stuff, etc… so I set up a hose right by the table.  

 There is talk about building a clay oven someday.  That would be cool!

Israel Launches Ground Operation In Gaza Strip

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GAZA CITY – The Israeli military said late Thursday it had launched a ground operation within the Gaza Strip. “The IDF’s objective as defined by the Israeli government is to establish a reality in which Israeli residents can live in safety and security without continues indiscriminate terror, while striking a significant blow to Hamas’ terror […]

Deliberate Parenting: A Business Model For Parenting A Self-Reliant Child

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There are as many parenting styles as there are parents. Most everyone is internally motivated to raise a child that has great qualities and will be successful in life. The problem lies in the fact that although most people have an idea of what they want their child to be like when they are an adult, they are consistently going about the “business” of parenting with little to no thought or planning. Without a business model or a plan, any business is likely to fail. Parenting most certainly is a business and parents are the leaders and directors of the company.

Every single moment that you are interacting with your child from birth is a teachable moment. Parental leaders need to be always in tune to the heart-beat of their company and how their parenting style will impact the final outcome product i.e. the adult that you are raising your child to be. Unfortunately, parents frequently parent with randomness contingent on the moment rather than deliberately focusing on how their actions will impact their future product. For example, one fatal error that many parents make happens all over the world, every single day. Go to any large grocery store or super center on any given day and you will see fatal parenting in action. The scene goes something like this: Mom is in a hurry to get through the store before little Johnny gets any crankier. Mom approaches the check out area with fear and trepidation because Johnny has been losing his patience since passing by the cereal and pop-tarts. Now, Mom has to make it past the strategically placed candy by the register. Mom moves in. Johnny sees the candy. Mom begins to let her gaze stray around the store to see how many people are around and within hearing vicinity. The store is busy and small sweat beads begin to run down Mom’s forehead. Johnny also cases the place and has quickly surmised that with enough volume he can accomplish his mission of obtaining candy. Johnny deploys a tactic that any bystander would know he has used many times before. Johnny begins to demand the candy, cry for the candy, and scream for the candy. Mom is placing her items on the counter and telling Johnny “not right now.” Johnny has no intention of taking “no” for an answer and his volume increases until Mom hands him a package of candy. Fatal parenting at work.

What has Mom actually done? A great deal of future damage to her final outcome product. Mom has selfishly thought of herself in the moment. Getting out of an embarrassing situation that she has put herself in from previous failures is more important than considering the long-term ramifications of what she is actually teaching Johnny. Let’s bullet point what that fatal parenting error actually does to the product:

*Teaches the child that they can control your behavior through social embarrassment.
*Teaches the child that patience is not required to get what you want.
*Teaches the child that they don’t have to earn or work for things because they can demand them, manipulate for them or behave in a negative and controlling manner to get rewarded.
*Teaches the child that there is a positive reinforcement for rude and obnoxious behavior.
*Teaches the child to expect instant gratification.
*Teaches the child to have no concern for how their actions impact others.
*Teaches the child to not be socially aware of their behavior.
*Teaches the child to have no self-control.
*Teaches the child no self-regulation.
*Teaches the child not to self-soothe and that they can get everything that they want.
*Teaches the child that if they cry long enough you will pacify them.

There are more, but you get the point. Everything about that moment in time is a fail in terms of your final product. Let’s go back in time even further. When a baby cries, they get fed, cuddled or their needs met. This is normal and good and teaches the baby to trust you. But, once all of the baby’s needs are met and they still cry (which is also quite normal) what do we do? We stick a pacifier in their mouth. What does the word “pacify” mean? It means to “cause” someone who is angry or upset to become calm. Does this sound like a good thing to put into your final product? If YOU are “causing” the person to become quiet or calm, is the person learning anything? Are they going to be able to self-soothe, self-regulate or be self-reliant if you are always pacifying them? The point is that sometimes we as parents do pacify. We want our children to be calm and quiet in most situations. But, if you are repeatedly behaving in a way that is “you” soothing and pacifying “them” and making everything all better under all circumstances for your child, you are damaging your final outcome product. The product that is destined to hit the shelves one day will be a fail.

What is a final product? A final product is the adult child that is going out into the world to go to college or go to work, to be a husband or a wife, an employee or a boss, a service worker, agent, teacher, counselor, representative or whatever they choose to do. The consumers of your product, a.k.a. the people that have to put up with the individual that you raised, are the bosses, employees, customers, co-workers, family members and others in society. When I encounter completely obnoxious people that make my life miserable, I secretly loathe their parents. You are the manufacturer of this product. Take some responsibility for that product before it hits the shelves.

You, as the leader of your family business, need to recognize and understand that you have a small window of time to have an impact and imprint on the slate of who your child becomes. Learn what successful company leaders do and how they are successful. You need to model this same behavior. Effective company leaders motivate, inspire and guide others to be the best that they can be, to be team-players, to be confident, competent and compassionate. Great leaders inspire others to follow the company mission, vision and philosophy. As a leader of your organization, consider developing a family mission statement, vision and philosophy that will go into your parenting style. An example of a company philosophy might be “to raise self-reliant, socially aware and empowered adults that will positively impact their world.” Using this philosophy as a guiding principle, a parent would know better than to give into Johnny’s demands at the store because it goes completely against the company philosophy. Your company vision should include what you envision for the future as well as your business strategies of just how you intend to create this. Your mission statement is simply your idea of your company’s purpose. What is your idea of your purpose in parenting and in the “business” of parenting. Have a detailed list of the qualities, characteristics, and core principles that you want in your product before it hits the market. This may seem a very strange way to view parenting and children, but it is far more loving to consider helping your child to know how to take care of themselves and to feel safe, and confident navigating life than it is to make certain that your child is frightened and dependent and ill-prepared to handle adversity.

 Even if your children are older, it is not too late to model qualities and character that is vital to your concept of a successful outcome product. Don’t just consider the product that you like or that makes you feel good about you because you need to feel needed, consider the final product. Consider how much better for your child and your child’s future if they are socially aware, self-reliant and empowered rather than dependent, obnoxious and demanding. Deliberate parenting is about considering what kind of outcome you want in every teachable moment rather than parenting in the moment or doing whatever is easiest. Deliberate parenting positions you as the leader, role model, teacher, mentor, coach and head of marketing and product development. And, because you are head of product development, if you produce a product that has a negative impact on society, then you have some accountability in that.

Now and then, under the best of circumstances and with the best intentions, some adults will just not behave in a way that the parents had hoped and dreamed. This happens and there is no point in beating yourself up. We cannot control what happens after the product hits the shelf. All that you can do is put all that you can into your product before it goes out into the world. All of your efforts should be concentrated on the long-term effects of your parenting style rather than on momentary pacifying.

Now, I should probably let you go as I know that you have an important business to run.

Can a Wood Gasifier Really Be a Reliable Energy Source?

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A few years back I fell in love with a show called “The Colony” on the Discovery Channel. If you haven’t seen it before, this reality show takes a group of seemingly random people and drops them into the middle of a staged, post-apocalyptic pandemic scenario.   The colonists are left in a desolate urban …

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How To Raise a Child To Be A Survivalist: The Top Ten Things That You Can Do Now

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Survival, in any sense of the word, is an enormous accomplishment and definitely worthy of celebration. Think about your life and all that you have been through and all that you have overcome. Nearly all of the events and circumstances that brought us to a point of really feeling proud of ourselves or our accomplishments involved some degree of endurance.

We have all endured pain, agony, loss, fear, sleep deprivation, disappointment and so many other emotions, sensory perceptions and feelings to reach the point of where you are right now. If you went through these life events and overcame them enough to still see the good things in life, you are a survivor. Maybe you haven’t overcome everything you have been through in the best way possible or the healthiest way possible, but you have endured many of these emotions, nonetheless, and you still believe there is beauty in life. And, you are here now…reading this.

 So, how do we do it? How do we get through all of these painful experiences and still find things to hope for, events that bring us joy and reasons to smile?  There are multiple reasons we are capable of suffering and still smiling. But, the number one reason that we are able to do this is because adversity builds self-esteem, character, tenacity and makes all of the other life moments more meaningful IF you have the capacity to pull through these adverse circumstances to land on the side of empowerment rather than damage.

We all have different ingredients that went into how we were raised. For me, the survival instinct that I carry was deeply instilled in me via my father. There are many life lessons about survival that my dad taught me, but I compiled a top-ten list of the things that dad taught me that I believe are the most beneficial in raising a child to be empowered, self-reliant and a survivor.

Your child will be far more likely to grow into a capable, emotionally strong and confident adult who is well-equipped to handle life’s circumstances, regardless of what life throws at them, if you actively instill these core principles into your parenting philosophies in all that you do, in all that you say and in all that you teach. First, you must also model these principles yourself. As you read them, if some do not apply to you, practice them until they do become a part of your belief system as well. A strong sense of self, a strong belief in your own abilities and an adaptable mind are vital for any human being navigating their way through the many emotional avenues of life. These principles will serve you or your child well whether enduring a job loss, a divorce, being lost and alone or a catastrophic event.

1. The world doesn’t center or rotate around me. I am an inter-connected part and my actions affect others.
2. To survive circumstance and life, I must be adaptable.
3. To flourish and to positively impact this world, I must learn to utilize my abilities.
4. Even though I cannot control life or mother nature, I can harness mother nature’s and life’s gifts and use them to my advantage.
5. Survival requires the will to endure and the tenacity to overcome. Life requires these plus a sense of humor.
6. I am special, but I am not that special. I am just like everyone else, but I can stand out by being among the few who truly believe in my own talents, abilities and skills.
7. No one will rescue, salvage or save me from all of life’s painful encounters. I must be able to be self-reliant enough to take care of myself regardless of the unpredictability of life.
8. I should never rest on my laurels as there is always more to learn and more to practice.
9. I need to hope for the best, prepare for the worst and expect something in between the two if I am prepared.
10. I must cherish every blessing, every gift and every opportunity presented to me because I only get one life.

These core life and survival principles have carried me through some turbulent times and I have come out on the the other side a stronger and even more adaptable person each and every time. I hope some of these will help you as well and carry you or your child through the tough times in order to truly value the joyful times.

How To Disappear In The Wilderness Using Natural Camouflage

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how to disappear in the wilderness using natural camouflageIf you ever wanted to disappear into the wilderness, one of the best ways to do so is by way of natural camouflage. In other words, not using camo gear or clothing, but using the elements of nature to make yourself hard to be seen. You never know when you might need natural camouflage.  Whether to escape and evade or to hunt and stalk, blending into the wilderness around you might be a necessary part of your survival scenario one day and it’s important that you understand the basics.  Luckily, the process is fool-proof – and – surprisingly fast.

Follow this link for the full step-by-step tutorial on…

How To Disappear Into The Wilderness
Using Natural Camouflage

The most useless gun article ever written published by Rolling Stone

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I came across the most useless gun drivel ever published today.

An article by Kristen Gwynne and published by Rolling Stone entitled “The 5 Most Dangerous Guns in America“.

I always like to see what tripe the left is putting out for the sheeple to lap up so I had high hopes when I opened the link…

While the article contains what I generously concede to be 10 or 15 minutes of web research, it is very evident that this article more closely resembles a middle school research paper. I will not point out the many specific failings of this article since most of them will be self evident to a thinking person.

The comments section is a hoot and of the several hundred I have read only one seems remotely supportive of the author.

Being a writer myself I find it hard to believe that Rolling Stone magazine would actually shell our real money for this drivel … but hey who said liberals were in their right minds anyway…

Still cling to my God and my guns,


DIY Gun Painting for under $75.00

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I decided to hop on the gun painting bandwagon and have my S&W M&P 15-22 painted a cool and functional pattern, until I saw the price tag. For what some of these companies charge for a paint job, I could buy an entirely new gun. In addition, the durability of some of these coats is highly
debated. I would hate to see a $400.00 paint job scratch off when I run it hard at a course; I decided to take matters into my own hands.

The alternative method I decided to proceed with would have to achieve:

Off Grid Air Conditioning: DIY Bucket Air Cooler for Camping and Other Uses

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diy-air-conditioner-bucket-coolerSo you decide you want to go camping in the dead heat of summer where it’s regularly in the 90’s or hotter. What do yo do to keep cool? Why not make yourself one of these off grid air conditioning devices? This diy bucket cooler not only proves useful for camping, but can also prove an extremely effective alternative to conventional air conditioning powered by electricity for people who want to live off the grid, or just save money on their electric bill.

Find out step by step…

How To Build A DIY Bucket Cooler
For Off Grid Air Conditioning

Checking In

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Hey Susan… kymber….  See the weeds now?

I know I’ve not kept up with the blog lately but like lots of other folks the garden is keeping me busy.  And I mean 12 hour days every day.  Well almost every day since it rained like crazy a few days ago and that always gives me sort of some time off.  Except that there are also tons of things that tend to get neglected when the garden starts coming in.

I’ll just run down yesterday to give you an idea of what I’ve been up to.  Since it had rained a couple of days before weeding is much easier to do.  They tend to come loose (the weeds) without tools.  The intention when I went out there was to pick squash and cucumbers to get ready to do some canning.  When I get out in the garden for some reason I can’t help but pull weeds.  Heck I was in town the other day and saw some weeds growing along the sidewalk.  I actually had to stop myself from bending over and pulling them.  Does this happen to anyone else? 

So for those who think my garden looks so “weedless” trust me it doesn’t happen by itself and is still overrun in many places.  I actually took some pictures of some of my weeds for Susan and kymber! lol  When you have control of the camera you have control of what you shoot.

I spent the early morning dealing with the rabbits, washing some clothes and hanging them out.  I’m still way behind but at least it’s a start.  Then I walked the garden to see what all was coming in.  It seems like most everything is coming on at the same time.  So as I picked squash and cucumbers I weeded where I was picking.  Believe it or not I spent the entire day doing that so I could get the pickles worked up this morning. They are on ice and I’ll get them canned tomorrow morning.  Then I washed a bunch of dishes, cooked dinner and sat down about 9 to eat.  While we were watching our evening movie I was shelling peas.

Speaking of shelling peas, I picked 3 six gallon buckets and one 3 gallon one of peas.  The way I get them done is to shell them is that I shell them when I’m sitting down to rest up and cool off.  I shell peas instead of reading in the evening like I normally do.  I shell peas while we watch our evening movie…. well heck, you get the idea.  Any sit down time is spent with peas until I get done with them. So far we’ve shelled a one gallon freezer bag full.  Not enough to fire up the canner yet. Soon though, really soon.

The tomatoes are starting to turn red.  There are a bunch out there but nothing like the huge amounts last year.  The weather has them real confused and right now there are only a few blooms on them.  We’ll see how they do once it cools down a bit.  I just need enough to make my salsa and the homemade Ro-tel’s.  I’ve got my fingers crossed.

This week we also butchered dispatched the 6 rabbits that should have been offed a couple of weeks ago.  Our feed bill was getting ridiculous and to be honest I was glad to get it done.

 Now I can officially be called The Rabbit Killer.  Those of you who have been hanging around with me awhile will understand that one!  lol At least this time it’s true.  But this morning I had a real scary moment.  What with the rabbits and all the freezer is over full.  As in there isn’t any tiny little space left.  So I had to move some things around to get to the ice bucket.  I can’t start the morning without my ice tea.  After that I can get my coffee fix.  So I was pulling things out and all the sudden a big package wrapped in butcher paper (read rabbit here) This big package falls out of the freezer and hits me in the shin.  

Well there was a sharp part of bone that clipped me right in that main vein that runs right up the leg.  I started bleeding profusely.  Lots and lots of blood was just pouring out.  I’ll admit I was scared.  Mars was outside and there was no way I could holler loud enough for him to hear me.  Still flooding the kitchen floor with pools of blood first I grabbed a chunk of paper towels that only worked for maybe thirty seconds.  I had sat down on the floor to take any pressure off the leg.  I was able to get to the dish towel drawer and grab a towel and sort of tried making a tourniquet out of it.
 All I could think was apply pressure and oh my God there was a  LOT of blood.  The towel and the pressure made everything slow down and before long the bleeding stopped.  You talk about scared!  WOW I was truly scared.  I don’t think I’ve mentioned it before but I have really thin skin and some sort of blood thing that I can never remember the name of. Thromb something…. Anyway, I bleed real easy.  I’ve now got a good dent in my lower shin that will be needing daily care but I’m still above ground. 
All this to say that the rabbit got me back from the “grave” as it were.  So the Rabbit Killer was attacked by the very  rabbits that were butchered dispatched.  Kind of funny when you think about it. Revenge from the grave freezer. 

I guess that’s as good a place as any to wrap this up.  Lots of canning is in my immediate future.  The green beans, Cherokee beans, Limas, peppers, tomatoes…. Well you get the idea.This time of year is what we work for all season long.  I’ll just keep repeating it to myself.

Have yourself a great weekend and I’ll try to get back to you soon. 

Hunger Rage: How Far Would You Go To Feed Your Family?

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Hunger, violence, rage, riots, looting and danger are all locked into an intertwined relationship with one another. Hunger breeds violence and violence breeds hunger. In our fast-food world of excess, it’s difficult to fathom the depths of desperation that severe food or water deprivation would lead to. How many times have you skipped lunch and mentioned to someone that you are starving? But, the truth be told, you were merely hungry or peckish. Starvation is something entirely different. And, unless you have experienced it first hand, you would have no real way of knowing just how far you would go for food and water. The body and the mind are absolutely driven to insist that you find food or water in a way that you must experience to understand.

What we do know is that normally non-violent individuals will quickly resort to violence in the act of gaining food or water supplies. November 8th, 2013 in the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan, one of the most devastating documented typhoons on record, there was a secondary storm that swept across Southeast Asia and the Philippines. This secondary storm was the storm of millions of desperate, starving people. With parts of the Philippines being wiped out by winds in excess of 235 miles per hour, there was little to no food for the survivors. People in mass quantity foraged through remnants for anything edible. Shops, stores, malls, and stands were depleted of all food and beverages rapidly. This hunger and desperation quickly became a catalyst toward violence. In Tacloban, a small city with nearly a quarter of a million inhabitants, they had only about 20 out of nearly 300 law enforcement agents show up for work in the immediate aftermath. There was no other governmental agency, entity or branch working. It became an impossibility to enforce any form of social order or law (Robberies) (Baculina).

The news is peppered with examples of hunger and violence. We have all heard of the string of rioting, looting and shootings that occurred following Hurricane Katrina. In addition, In 2011, a string of robberies was blamed on hunger in Philadelphia. In 2008, after Haiti had been hard hit by multiple hurricanes and tropical storms, the entire population was hungry. There was zero infrastructure, zero food or water supplies, zero social order, zero electricity, zero drinking water, zero public health system. This lack of social order and infrastructure gave way to widespread disease, corruption, violence, tension, riots, slums and hunger rage (Hunger).

Social control and social order is a very fragile entity. All pieces and parts of the concept of the control and order must fit perfectly into place in order for it to be effective. When one piece of our societal system is fractured or broken, the entire facade of what we deem to be order and control can go tumbling down. In a domino effect one falling piece immediately affects the next one and one by one the systems break and fall. In a butterfly effect, the cause of widespread destruction of social order can begin months earlier with an event that may not by itself seem capable of fracturing and devastating an entire social system. But, because social order and social control are built upon a social system with interrelated and interconnecting parts, there is no way but for one event to impact others until the problem grows exponentially.

Reading about what others have done in the face of death from starvation, how far would you go in order to feed yourself or your loved ones? These are questions to ask yourself sooner rather than later. If your answer is that you would do whatever you had to do in order to feed yourself or your family, then why would you not stock pile food, water and supplies in your home and in cache locations now before disaster strikes? Why would you wait for desperate times if you know in your heart that you would do anything in order to eat or drink? If your answer truly is that you would do whatever you needed to do to feed your family, then “whatever you need to do to feed your family” should be to plan ahead and to be prepared.

For further reading:

Baculinao, Eric F. Brinley Bruton And Alexander Smith. NBC News. “Typhoon Haiyan’s Hungry Survivors: We Are Not Looters.” Nov. 12, 2013.

“Robberies Blamed On Hunger.”

Matt is NOT a Qualified Expert

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I was reminded of this last week after we did some elderberry foraging.  We had gathered more than ever before, thanks to some new locales Urban Nature Gal scouted out, and I was making a batch of elderberry jam.



First, a few facts to set the scene:

Elderberries are mildly toxic.  Some people have a reaction to this mild toxin that causes vomiting.  Most of the toxin is in the stems, seeds, and leaves, though, so the fruit is pretty safe.

Heat destroys this toxin.

I often eat raw elderberries on the trail and have never had a problem with that.

As I was saying, I was making jam, and as usual, a foam developed on the top of the mixture.  This is common, and I skim it off when I want the jam to set well or mix it back in if I don’t mind something more syrupy.  That day I skimmed, but the foam had a good amount of juice, which just seemed a waste.  There were also way too many seeds to make jam, syrup, or tincture, but I figured I could use it in my cookies.


Next day, I made my famous wild buckwheat pancakes for breakfast.  As I was looking for toppings, I saw the foam and decided to see how it tasted.  So I spread it on my pancakes.  Delicious.  I was delighted and could not wait to bake some elderberry shortbread cookies.

Two hours later I was doubled over the toilet, vomiting for all I was worth.  After a few minutes I laid down in bed but soon was back up and in the bathroom as my body periodically ejected all matter from my stomach through any means necessary over the next few hours.

So what happened?  Urban Nature Gal and I spent the afternoon figuring it out.

Did I pick the wrong thing?  No.  I KNEW FOR A FACT I had picked elderberries, so I knew I was going to be okay.  Otherwise this story would have included a trip to the hospital.  Like I’ve said before, ALWAY KNOW WHAT YOU ARE PICKING.

Why did I get sick?  You may have noticed above, the toxins of elderberries are in the stems, leaves, and SEEDS.  The foam created concentrated the seeds from about 6 quarts of fruit into a 1 pint container.  That’s a lot of seeds.

But heat destroys the toxin?  TRUE.  But the pot I had held 6 quarts of fruit, plus the sugar and lemon juice for the pan.  It was a big pot.  And the foam that was created on top of the mixture was at the top of the pot, where everything is coolest.  Because I wanted the foam to develop, I wasn’t stirring, so the top stayed just cool enough that the seeds stayed toxic.  Once the foam had been skimmed, I stirred the mixture until it came to a boil to evenly cook the entire thing.

When I put the foam on my pancakes, I was literally spreading concentrated elderberry seeds in all their toxic glory on my breakfast.


Needless to say, the foam went right into the compost, and I spent the rest of the day in bed, taking activated charcoal to ease my tummy.

That’s the fun of Urban Nature Man:  When I screw up, I tell you about.


Lightening the Load and Becoming Less Reliant On Gear

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I saw a conversation in a preppers group on Facebook the other day that got me thinking about something. The conversation started with someone obviously very new to all this asking probably the most common beginner’s question there is about prepping. “I’m putting together a bugout bag, what do I need to put in it?” …

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Discussing The Prepper’s Workbook on Destiny Survival Radio

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Once again I enjoyed chatting with John Wesley Smith of Destiny Survival Radio about my latest book release, this time The Prepper’s Workbook.  My co-author, Scott Finazzo joined us as well as we went into the details of the book and why it was intended not just for those who think of themselves as preppers, but any family or individual who wants to be ready for emergencies.

John has also posted his written review of the book on his Destiny Survival site here:

The link to the interview can be found here:

Chinese Hackers Pursue Key Data On U.S. Workers

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WASHINGTON — Chinese hackers in March broke into the computer networks of the United States government agency that houses the personal information of all federal employees, according to senior American officials. They appeared to be targeting the files on tens of thousands of employees who have applied for top-secret security clearances. The hackers gained access […]

Wilderness Water

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Wilderness Water

Many times when hiking trails you will come upon water sources in the wilderness. This could be a small pond, stream or simply a depression where water has collected. It is important to remember to avoid the problems that are inherent in any source of wilderness water before using it. Any water source should always be filtered and treated to remove any possible contaminants to avoid serious problems that could affect your health and ultimately your survival. 

Simple Survival Tip

Proper water treatment methods should always be used before consuming water from a wilderness source.

Got wilderness water?

Staying above the water line!


The Rise Of The Prepper: How Uncertain Times Are Increasing The Popularity Of Prepping

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Prepping is a term used to describe a variety of lifestyles. For the vast majority of people, the term is thought to describe an individual or group of individuals who recognize the risk of catastrophe, calamity and uncertainty and thus attempt to prepare for these uncertain times so as to be better equipped mentally, physically and tangibly to survive any situation presented. Preppers value being able to take care of themselves no matter what. They value not relying on the government or other agencies for their survival needs. They know and recognize the need to plan ahead to meet their own and their loved ones basic needs no matter whether the event is small or large scale.

Prepping Through Time:

Historically, prepping has been around for a long while. Our ancestors were adept at planning ahead for times when things might be more grim. They were nomadic in nature and survived and thrived by planning ahead for more difficult times. Only recently has the term “prepper” been used so widely. There were a variety of preppers spawned from historical uncertainty as with the Great Depression after the stock market crashed in 1929 and the Cold War era leading up to 1980. Many feared a nuclear attack and began stock piling preps and building shelters just in case.  Y2K and the widespread fear of electronic collapse also gave way to prepping for the unpredictably of the future. Following the events of the Great Depression, a lot of people no longer trusted the government or banks or anyone else with their safety and security. Lifestyle changes came about from having experienced a time of loss of prosperity and going without. From this period, a great amount of us had relatives or grandparents who salvaged and saved every spare piece of tin foil, butter containers, rubber bands and other odds and ends for that “just in case” time when they might need it and not be able to get it.

This Great Depression was, in essence, the spawn of the prepper mindset: A mindset and worldview that states that I might not always have access to food, water and medical care. I might have to find a way to take care of myself and my family. I might not always be able to count on others. I am going to plan ahead. I am going to save this tin foil and other items because I have had to go without and I learned a valuable lesson from that experience.

Modern Prepping:

Fast forward to our modern inter-connected, wired, heavily migrated and immigrated world and everything is far more complicated on a much grander scale. We know that today these uncertain events can become globally catastrophic. We also know that due to our higher population levels that our job markets are much more strained. We know that we could lose our job. We know that a pandemic could spread far more rapidly and globally than what the CDC (Centers For Disease Control) or WHO (World Health Organization) could compensate for and keep up with.

From the vast amount of internet, radio and television programming, we know that weather causes major catastrophic events all around the world. Now, more than ever before, we can watch war, hurricanes, kidnappings, terrorism, pandemics, economic challenges and international relations from our own living rooms. The world has always been a dynamic and potentially dangerous place, but now we really can’t pretend that it cannot or will not affect us anymore. We would have to disengage from all types of media to include the newspaper in order to really tell ourselves that nothing bad could ever happen to us.

Prepping Awareness What Happens When McDonald’s, Coke and Snickers Are Not Available:

This awareness is a catalyst for the rise of the prepper. Being prepared is now far more mainstream and acceptable. It is much more difficult to look at someone who believes in the value of having life-saving skills and supplies on hand and not question whether maybe we should do this too. To ignore the importance of prepping is to say that you actually believe that nothing bad will happen to you and if it does, someone else will take care of you. No one wants to verbalize that out loud. They know deep down that they should actively do what they can to be prepared. There is undoubtedly a sense of shame in admitting that you are ill prepared to take care of yourself or your family should you need to.

Following the sinking of the Titanic, no one wants to be on a cruise ship that doesn’t have enough life rafts for everyone. Likewise, knowing the possibilities of things that could occur, no one should want to face severe weather, job loss or catastrophe without food, water and supplies. It just makes rational sense to do a risk analysis and contingency planning in order to be prepared for those risks. It’s “just in case” insurance. We all should value the feeling of being prepared.

Preppers are no longer being viewed as paranoid or strange. They are slowly and surely being viewed as role models for the rest. They are actively showing and teaching others the value in having skills, knowledge and supplies to take care of yourself during uncertain times. The more and more that preppers share online or in writings or with other media and groups, the more mainstream this lifestyle and mindset becomes.

There has rarely been a time in history that was calm, smooth sailing with little to no worries, but now, more than ever our future is uncertain. Now, more than ever, we are made aware of this uncertainty. Now, more than ever we need to be planning ahead. Now, more than ever, prepping is gaining in popularity for a very good reason.

Israeli Military Launches New Gaza Airstrikes, Prepares For Potential Ground Invasion

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Israeli military officials said early Tuesday that they had carried out airstrikes targeting at least 100 sites in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip as part of a new offensive aimed at halting rocket attacks by militants as President Barack Obama urged both sides to exercise restraint. In a statement, the military said it was seeking to […]

How To Survive Your Current Situation And Empower Yourself For When The SHTF

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Approaching the great outdoors with a beginner’s mind will allow even the most experienced to view the surroundings with an open mind. Opening up your mind to all of the possibilities your surroundings offer will only increase and improve your odds of survival. With the mind of a novice everything has possibilities and you are only limited by your own imagination.


All of us approach our physical and social worlds with mental models that are a compilation of our past experiences, our internal values and judgments and our own mental roadblocks that are put in place over years of disappointments, successes and failures. But, by purposefully stepping out of this box we have put ourselves into and viewing everything with a new, untainted perspective, we open up a world of new options.


This mental practice, when put to use in practicing survival skills, enables you to be more innovative and increase your ability to expand your potential options when presented with a situation. We tend toward the same responses when problem solving that we have always relied upon. To approach a problem with a novice mindset takes practice in and of itself. Once you have mastered this ability, however, you will be amazed at how much creative energy is allowed to surface that we typically cut off with boundaries and mental roadblocks.


An open mind that is wide-open to possibilities will far sooner be able to recognize any opportunity than a closed, jaded, know-it-all mind. Do not allow your own brain to keep you from seeing things with a new perspective. Remember what it was like to practice your skills when you had never seen it done before. Teach a child how to do a skill and you will see an open mind in practice. They have no preconceived ideas of what the outcome will be and are therefore much more open to problem solving and seeing opportunities wherever they may be. Children see everything as possible and this is the mindset that you want to hone in on. As adults we slowly narrow our options until we are confined by our own lack of daring creativity.


Problem solving in survival situations or real-world, day-to-day circumstances is a skill that not everyone is great at. You can improve this ability via learning how to put down your everyday lens that you use to view the world and pick up a lens that has not been used yet. Mentally pretend that you are viewing the problem with this unused lens. Everything about the problem should look different with this new lens. Consider all of your options and all of the possibilities utilizing whatever you have on in terms of every-day-carry items, what is in your immediate surroundings and what is perhaps beyond your immediate surroundings. Attempt to problem solve your way around the problem with new eyes and see if more solutions don’t come to mind.


In every-day life many of us get caught up in patterns and routines. Because of these patterns and routines, we become “stuck” or unable to get ourselves out of a situation that we no longer want to be in or that is painful to be in. Why is it that some people always land on their feet while others struggle with the same sort of problems over and over again? Because of these mental models and routines some people are virtually unable to see a new solution. Therefore, they continue to respond to problems with the same set of solutions expecting different outcomes each time and never really grasping that they will continue to get the same sort of outcome if they continue to respond to problems with the same set of solutions.

Taking a chance on “you” can be frightening. Sometimes we are blocked by an inability to see the potential in ourselves. Opening up your mind to possibilities and practicing looking at solutions without stopping yourself with a lack of belief in yourself can be difficult. Explore your world, explore your options, explore change and explore these options with a free and open mind as if you were a child again. Remember when you thought you could be an astronaut? Remember when you believed 100% that you would be a race-car driver? What happened to you between those dreams and your current set of circumstances? You got in your own way. You kept yourself from being able to believe that you would ever be able to do those things. And, so you continued on the path of least resistance a.k.a. “the easier path.” When looking at solutions to survival situations and having a survival mindset, it is vital that you do not get in your own way.

You have to believe in yourself. You must believe that you can get out of the situation. You need to accept that although it may be one of the most difficult things you have ever been through, you can and you will survive. You must have the will to survive. You cannot afford to have a lack of faith in your own ability and you cannot afford to be closed-minded to the survival options you are presented with in a SHTF situation. Having the ability to see the entire situation for what it is and exploring what your options may be without thinking of all of the reasons that you don’t have what it takes to succeed is the point of practicing a survival mindset.

You do have the capacity to problem-solve and to explore options and utilize your experience and your wilderness skills to best meet your needs and survive another day. You can do this now, in your current life. You can practice looking at your situation for the first time with a new set of eyes and exploring all of your options not just the options that you immediately think of. Not just the options that you usually give yourself….but, all of the options. Use your new lens. Use the lens of a novice. How would someone who hasn’t lived your life, hasn’t experienced what you have experienced and hasn’t made all of the choices or suffered all of the consequences of those choices view your life? Would they offer new insights? Would they see new solutions? Most certainly they would. We are only limited by our own lens and our own borders. Expand those borders in your current world and in your wilderness practice. View everything with a new untainted lens and see how different everything looks. An open-mind creates a world of new opportunity for which we were unable to see before.


This is not to say that you should foolishly go out into the wilderness with only an open mind and everything will work out. This is one more skill to add to your survival pack. You should have the practical and experiential knowledge of self-reliance, bush craft and wilderness survival skills before ever partaking on an outdoor adventure into uncharted territory. You should not travel alone if at all possible and you should always let someone know where you will be and when to expect you back and when to become concerned before heading out on a camping trip, a day hike or a longer-term survival trip. Make sure you have the necessary clothing and gear and that you are amply familiar with how to use any gear that you take along. Add to that, an open-mind that allows you to see all possibilities and you will most certainly open up a new world of options, solutions and improve your survival mindset.

Water Storage Basics

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Learn where to find potable water in your home and in the wild, how to store it, and how to purify it to ensure your family has enough in a crisis situation.

4th of July, 2014

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Recognizing The Gravity Of The Situation: How Bushcrafters, Survivalists And Preppers Mentally Prepare For Danger

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As I watch the news, read the paper, research situations where people survived, and recount my own experiences, I frequently encounter a common theme. People who tend to respond to dangerous encounters in a way that aids in there own survival, recognize the “gravity of the situation” and are able to kick into flight or fight mode as needed. Some people recognize the gravity of the situation and under the intense stress and pressure they close down and are unable to think coherently or make rational decisions. Whereas, others are able to recognize the level of danger and still make survival decisions. And then there are those who are unable to fully grasp the profoundness of a life or death situation and may not take the unfolding events and their corresponding decisions seriously enough until it is too late.
Why is that? I have been fascinated by this fact since I was a child and found myself in a life or death situation. I, along with a friend, were in a life-changing moment in time that terrified both of us. I made rapid decisions and choices under the extreme stress, while she froze in a completely unresponsive manner. We were both from similar backgrounds, both the same age, the same sex, with similar likes and dislikes. Why did my flight or fight mechanisms kick in so well and her’s not at all? 
Fast forward, years later, and I have gleaned a great deal of insight into the survival personality. The personality type that recognizes the seriousness and the gravity of the situation, but refuses to accept defeat, refuses to buy into hopelessness and will do “something” whatever that “something” is in order to save one’s own life. This life-saving ability may be innate in a manner that one either has it or doesn’t. But, that never made sense to me because it fails to explain the years and years that humans have adapted to their environments and survived and thrived among dangers, predators and each other. There is a historical learning curve that has taken place in order for you or I to even be here. If our ancestors had not adapted and developed the ability to function under stressful circumstances and make quick, potentially life-saving, decisions, we simply wouldn’t be here as they wouldn’t have survived to reproduce. 
These ancient survival clues that are unearthed as we learn more and more about where we came from, are insight into our modern potential and capabilities. To me, this clarifies that the survival personality can be honed. We may not need these survival abilities anymore, on the day-to-day as we once did, but perhaps they are buried deep within us under a pile of tablets, magazines, remotes and Mp3 players. 
The ability to move toward action rather than inaction and the ability to get yourself out of trouble and to make life-saving decisions are abilities that are still within each of us. These abilities are gifts, bestowed upon us from the blood, sweat and tears of the many that came before us. The fact is that the human plight has been a painstakingly difficult one. We are the ultimate survivors. We survive without actual flight, without long, sharp claws and without 6-inch canine teeth. We survive because we systematically adapted to our environment, mastered fire-craft, shelters and tool-making and responded appropriately to threats and dangers.
So, how does one hone this innate survival ability?
We hone this skill like any other life saving skill via knowledge and practice. Bush-craft skills empower you with the ability to utilize your surroundings to your benefit. Practicing these skills enables you to consistently consider every angle of a “potentially dangerous situation.” As you pack two to three ways of making fire, cordage, containers and knives into your kit, you are readying yourself to face potential odds. And you are readying yourself to recast those odds in your own favor. These skills increase your own capacity to make decisions under duress, stress and danger, by gently and systematically exposing your brain to “what-if” scenarios and responding to those “what-if” scenarios with knowledge, skill and a plan. 
When I look back on my own situation, the primary difference between myself and my friend is that I had been preparing throughout my childhood for survival situations, but I never actually realized it until adulthood. The fact that I was introduced to wilderness survival techniques and situations in a timely, fun manner, literally saved my life when the SHTF in a real-life scenario. It wasn’t so much the skill, although skill is precious in saving lives. It was the empowerment and the mental preparation that I had done on my own through practicing these skills that ultimately saved my life. I had been developing a survival mindset. 
If you can envision it, you can create it. The mind is powerful. Fuel your mind with knowledge and skill that will not only aid you in life-threatening circumstances, but will aid your mind in recognizing the gravity of the situation and responding to the situation. You can train your brain to be a survivor through bush-crafting, prepping and survival skills. Your life is precious. Train your brain to be there for you if you ever need to save a very important life….your own. 

ThruNite Flashlights

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Here are great high quality flashlights for all of your different needs at a low cost. The more we advance in technology the better the companies are able to make good long lasting flashlights that everyone can afford.


A little bit of information about this company

 ThruNite is a professional outdoors and tactical products supplier, offering excellent products and exemplary service. We stand behind all our products by cooperating with Amazon. All our amazon stores are managed by our service centers in USA and Europe. We currently have warehouses in Germany, UK, France, Japan, Australia, and USA. Our goal is to make the very best and brightest flashlights along with guaranteeing our customers 100% satisfaction. By manufacturing our own products and selling them directly to the public we can meet that goal by offering better savings and better service.

  ThruNite strives to stand above our competition by developing and engineering all of our own products to meet the highest standards. ThruNite is proud to release the first lights to use our newest proprietary Buck-Boost light engine which can provide constant brightness output regardless battery types, LED modes, temperature and voltage change. At ThruNite we are committed to making the very best products!

ThruNite – Guiding you through the night


I have 3 flashlights to present to you today. I am excited to show you these flashlights so let’s get on with it! :)

T10S 169 Lumen…ht Silver (cool white) 

T10S 169 Silver (cool white)T10S 169 Silver (cool white)T10S 169 Silver (cool white)

Talk about a small, compact great looking little flashlight for everyday use. Finally different from all black colored flashlight. This one for a change is all stainless steel.




Features and Specifications: 

– Cree XP-G2 LED with a lifespan of 20+ years of run time.
– Uses one 1.5V AA battery.
– Max output: 169 lumens with XP-G2.
– Working voltage: 0.9V-3V
– 93.5mm (Length) x 19mm (Diameter).
– 63.5g weight (without battery).
– Reverse polarity protection design to protect from improper battery installation.
– Tail-switch and twisting head design.
– Toughened ultra-clear glass lens with anti-reflective coating.
– OP reflector gives perfect flood.
– Removable clip.
– Stand on tail to serve as a candle, with the wand covered on the head.


Press down and release the tail-switch to turn the flashlight on/off
1.Switch ON: Press the tail cap button down completely until a “click” sound is heard and flashlight turns on.
2. Switch OFF: Press the tail cap button down until a “click” sound is heard and the light is turned off. You also could turn the head loose a bit to turn the light off from on.

Changing Modes:

Method1: Half press the tail switch when the light is on to circle through firefly, low and high.

Method 2: When the light is on, loosen the head a bit until the light turns off and tighten it in 2 seconds to change modes.

Method 3: Click the tail switch to change modes (Interval between two clicks should be less than 2 seconds)

Memory function: 

Memory function is activated after 2 seconds from the light turned off. Turn on the light after 2 seconds; the mode output keeps the same as your last use.

Perfect for a small every day carry. My wife Josie has this one and just loves the simplicity of it and the candle option is such a plus. This one is under $30 U.S.

 The Archer 1A 178 Lumen…Tactical

The Archer 1A 178 Lumen...Tactical The Archer 1A 178 Lumen...Tactical The Archer 1A 178 Lumen...Tactical

This little gem is mine. :) It’s also small, compact and powerful for its size. Let’s look at the features and specifications.


– LED: CREE XP-G2 LED with a lifespan of 20+ years of run time.
– Max 178lumen output using 1 1.5v AA battery.
– Firefly: 0.2 lm.249hours; Low: 24lm.6hours; Mid80lm.1.5hours; Max Output:178 lm 58minutes;Strobe:178lm.2.5hours.
– Working voltage: 0.9 v to 4.2 v
– Removable steel pocket clip.
– Max run time: 249 hours (Firefly mode)
– Max beam distance:184meters.
– Peak beam intensity: 2993cd.
– Impact resistant: 10 meters.
– Waterproof to IPX-8 Standard
– 104.14 MM LENGTH, 22.10mm bezel diameter.
– Weight: 60g without battery.
– Aircraft grade aluminum body structure.
– Premium type III hard anodized anti-abrasive finish.
– Ultra-clear tempered glass lens with anti-reflective coating.
– Momentary forward click tactical switch.
– Programmable memory function
– Strobe mode for tactical and emergency use.
– Low, medium and high modes to balance power consumption and light output.
– Smooth reflector for max light output.
– Highly focused beam for maximum distance
– Stainless steel front striking bezel.
– Tactical knurling for firm grip.
– Streamlined body design
– Reversed polarity protection.
– Durable T-shaped thread.
– Intelligent highly efficient circuit board design for max performance and long run time.


To power on/off the light:

Press the tail cap half way to momentarily activate the light; completely press the tail cap to click, the light will stay on. Push the tail cap again to click, the light will go off.

Switching between different modes:

Firefly-low-medium-high-strobe, click to turn the light on, then loosen the head by one eighth of a circle, tighten the head back gently, the light will move on to the next mode/function, repeating the same step will cycle the light through all the functions in the order above, then the light will stay at the particular function set by the user.

Battery replacement

Take off the tail cap, insert the battery with positive toward the LED assembly (head of the light), install the tail cap and tighten all the way to operate the light.

 Another winner in my book for sure. :) Under $30 U.S

TN12 2014

TN12 2014TN12 2014TN12 2014

Now if you are looking at the all around perfect flashlight that drives a powerful punch…Here it is…my favorite of the 3. Small enough to carry every day but able to throw a 1050 lumens. Talk about awesomeness right there. :)

Product Introduction

The ThruNite TN12 (2014) is the improved version of The TN12.

Improved UI and 1050 lumen with one 18650 battery,

a body specfically designed  for better single hand operation and a new emitter (XM-L2 U2) to supply more beam with throw and flood.


– Improved UI for more lumens

– Cree XM-L2 U2 LED with a lifespan of 50,000 hours

– Uses one 18650 rechargeable battery or two CR123A batteries.

– Max output:1050 lumens with XM-L2 U2

– Working voltage: 2.7V-9V

– 143mm (Length)*25.4mm (Diameter)

– 82g weight (without batteries)

– Reverse polarity protection design to protect from improper battery installation

-Versatile mode 1050 lm (90min) 800 lm(1.5hour) 280lm(5hours) 20lm(74 hours) 0.3lm(1585hours)

– Aircraft-grade aluminum body

– Premium Type III hard-anodized anti-abrasive finish

– Toughened ultra-clear glass lens with anti-reflective coating

– Smooth reflector gives perfect beam and throw.



Press the tail switch gently for momentary on or until it clicks to turn on the light. Press again to turn the light off.

Changing Modes

With the light turns on, press the side switch to circle through five different mode outputs from firefly mode, low, medium, high and Max.


With the light turns on, press and hold the side switch for about 1 second to enter into strobe mode (13HZ).

A single press on the side switch will return the flashlight to general lighting mode from strobe.

Under $50 U.S

I absolutely recommend all 3. Depending on your needs I think these 3 flashlights will more than provide.

Appreciate your time spent on this page and hope you found what you were looking for.

Here’s a video on how I experimented and tested the flashlights! Enjoy!



Another Interesting Blog: Klarus XT11 Tactical Flashlight 

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 And so it begins. Everything up to this point has just been a warm-up for what’s to come. What?  My first batch of green beans is sitting in a bucket ready to be cut and prepared.  As usual (for me anyway)  many of them are too large to be anything but tough.  The chickens like them though so it’s not like a lost cause.

It seems like once the green beans start coming in  everything else will follow as closely as possible.  Don’t ask me why.  I might be wrong but it’s the way things happen for me.   

I put up some dill pickles using the recipe that Cristy suggested. I thought I had enough cucumbers ready for a full canner full but only ended up with 5 quarts.  It all worked out though because that was all the vinegar recipe I’d made.  I even made extra so next time it looks like I’ll have to double the vinegar mix next time.  I’ve picked a whole bunch of cucumbers in the past couple of days and it’s time to get them prepped and canned.

I also had one of the jars bust on me.  Thankfully it was just the bottom that blew out.  The brand?  It was one of those that Big Lots and Dollar General  carry?  Golden Harvest is the name I think.  It’s the first time I’ve had one of them bust so I don’t know what happened.

Miss Kitty has decided that she likes the outdoor sink.

I’ve got peppers to pick and it won’t be long till I have to can them too.  These hot banana peppers are almost as long as this plant is high.  I’m thinking I want to  put some up for sandwich peppers.

The picture doesn’t do justice to the size of these jalapeno’s.  I’m seeing some bacon wrapped stuffed peppers in the near future.

Mars has a thing for serrano’s and so I’m definitely going to have to put some up as well.

The purple hull peas are just waiting on me for the first picking and I’m hoping I can get that done today.  I’ll shell them and put them up in the fridge until I have enough for a full canner run.  Of all the beans/peas we eat these are our favorite.  I’ve got a goal of 52  quarts this year. 

I’ve also got the same goal for squash but that is probably just wishful thinking.  Slowly but surely those #%*$ bugs are trying to take over. It’s an ongoing battle and I’m not ready to fly the white flag of surrender just yet.

There are other things I could share but it’s all pretty much garden stuff.  Shoot, many of you are going through the same things as I am.   It’s times like these I wish I could move as fast as I used to.  This going on at half speed truly gets old. It’s frustrating but hey, we all do what we have to do with what we have to work with.  

The beautiful Day Lilly’s up top are a sight to see right now.  This is the first time in three years that they’ve actually bloomed.  I just love the color.

Is The Survivalist Prepper A New Breed? Bringing Survival Tactics, Bushcraft and Preparedness To a Whole New Level

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The ability to adapt to changing circumstance and to become self-reliant is something that we should all strive for.

I happened across a survivalist forum that asked a general question regarding whether each visitor was a survivalist or a prepper. After some time spent skimming some of the answers to that intriguing question, I set out to read other blogs, forums, social-media sites and discussions on this topic. Eventually, I was able to deduce that there is a historical divide between the two groups for some people, but not for others. I discovered a new, and rapidly-growing group of individuals who appear to label themselves and identify as both a survivalist and a prepper.

Although it appears that this fairly-new, mixed-breed, known as the survivalist-prepper, identifies with both philosophies, they do tend to model skills and information which leans slightly more toward survivalist or slightly more toward prepping. But, as time passes, the philosophies are steadily morphing into an entirely new concoction. The individual that practices outdoor survival skills and bush-craft, believes in home defense, values having food, water and other necessities stocked up for “just-in-case events” is now doubly prepared. This person has an overall worldview that puts a high priority on being prepared mentally, physically and has the skills and knowledge to adapt to changing circumstances whether those circumstances equate to being lost in the wilderness or an economic collapse. This person is self-reliant.

The self-reliant individual is not unlike this multi-purpose tool.

Self-reliance is a term not used enough in the survivalist, outdoor survival, urban survival, prepping or bushcraft genres. It is used with more frequency in off-grid, permaculture and other self-sustaining groups. But, self-reliance and self-sufficient are not the same thing. One can be self-reliant without necessarily living a self-sufficient lifestyle. Generally, I would say that anyone that is able to live off-grid and practices permaculture and self-sustaining homesteads is very much self-reliant in most or all areas of survival and preparedness.

Self-reliance is something that every individual should strive to become. The term denotes that you are capable and able to take care of your self. Self-reliance is saying that you can rely on …you. This is not to say that you will never need others. A fully self-reliant person is capable of utilizing any skill necessary to accomplish the mission at hand to include social skills if need be. To be self-reliant is to be adaptable to changing circumstance. To be self-reliant is to be capable of navigating the terrain and improvising and adapting when the terrain suddenly or drastically changes. To be self-reliant is to know that you are ready, willing and able to do what needs to be done to acclimate and systematically overcome the odds even when those odds are seemingly stacked against you.

Shouldn’t we all want to be able to rely upon ourselves? Yes, we are social creatures and we do need people and we do need groups and communities. Yes, your odds of survival if you are socially adept and can acclimate your social landscape successfully and with ease are increased. But, what if you are ever in a situation where all that you have is yourself? Would you feel safe with you? Would you depend on you? Do you have the knowledge, skills and abilities as well as the mindset to navigate your way through emergencies, disasters or catastrophic events? The confident, self-reliant individual would have adequate knowledge and skill in areas that cover the gambit of survivalist, hunter-gatherer, bushcraft, tactical, home defense and prepper.

When preparedness meets survivalist 

This new breed of prepared-survivalist is not the militant-survivalist of decades past nor the apocalyptic prepper highlighted recently on television, rather something in between the two. And because of this clear delineation that appears to come with differing perspectives that are a combination of multiple lifestyles and philosophies, the survivalist-prepper both needs and deserves a new name that highlights this belief system and the combined knowledge, skill and ability which is exponential when you bring philosophies together. This new breed is deserving of being coined as self-reliant. With self-reliance comes confidence and competence. Who wouldn’t be proud to call themselves self-reliant. There is no doubt that when it comes to everyday life events gone awry or serious life-changing events, I want to either be self-reliant or be right beside someone who is.

The Gift of Encouragement

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By Denis Korn

We live in stressful and transformative times!

My Be Encouraged post first appeared at the end of 2011 and I have received many encouraging comments about its value in these troubling times.  I especially wanted to re-post this updated version.  It is not meant to be an article about preparedness or outdoor adventure – it is here to be a brief rest from the apprehension of daily life and the anguish of the times.

I felt a personal calling to write and share this prayer of encouragement as a gift to those needing some uplifting words during distressing events and the constant perpetration by media and government of crisis, fear and hysteria.

It is difficult to stay positive, feel secure and be joyful when the world around us appears to be dissolving and transforming, and so many people – especially “leadership” – are egocentric and delusional. 

We all need encouragement to help us cope.


  • Be encouraged: to find tranquility, serenity, courage and contentment amid the uncertainty, anxiety and confusion of the times.
  • Be encouraged: to trust GOD to replace fear and worry with peace and hope.
  • Be encouraged: to avoid those who rob you of your passion.
  • Be encouraged: to seek the company and counsel of those who encourage, understand and support you.
  • Be encouraged: to seek the wisdom to be able to discern the truth from the lie.
  • Be encouraged: to discover someone you can truly trust.
  • Be encouraged: to focus your mind and heart on that which edifies, inspires and transforms.
  • Be encouraged: to let go of the notion that you can do “it” all yourself.
  • Be encouraged: to cast off the chains that bind you to discontentment.
  • Be encouraged: to love one another in thought, heart and deed.
  • Be encouraged: to be selfless not selfish.
  • Be encouraged: to be honest with yourself – and others.
  • Be encouraged: to set aside a few moments each day to quiet your mind, open the eyes of your heart, meditate in silence and be thankful to GOD for the blessings that you have been given.
  • Be encouraged: to deflect the negativity, fear and hatred that is thrust upon you daily.
  • Be encouraged: to experience aliveness as much as possible.
  • Be encouraged: to discern the beneficial actions you are called upon to pursue during these troubled times.
  • Be encouraged: to be courageous while you walk among the weak and disheartened.
  • Be encouraged: to continually search for and discover meaning in all circumstances.
  • Be encouraged: to embody forgiveness.
  • Be encouraged: to realize and exemplify your GOD given purpose in life.
  • Be encouraged: whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy – think about (meditate on) these things … Phil 4:8
  • Be encouraged: to pray to GOD with thanksgiving – believe and have faith – let go – follow GOD’s guidance and instruction with patience and perseverance.
  • Be encouraged: to encourage others!


Blessings to those who are encouraged by these words

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