Food Storage Trail Mix Recipe

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Food Storage Trail Mix Recipe

Now that my kiddos are out of school for the summer, the kitchen is a popular place to be. Seems like every time I turn around, someone is opening the pantry door in search of a snack. 

Goldfish no longer excites the girls and since I’ve been cooking from scratch more, they’re expecting a little snack time creativity…something like their favorite, peanut butter granola bites

So, this week, I threw together a trail mix using some of my freeze-dried fruit.  It was quick (Less than 2 minutes to make!), and hassle-free (Most freeze-dried fruit is yummy right out of the can.) and best of all, my girls loved it. 

I think you’ll love it, too. :)

Trail Mix 

You’ll need these ingredients: 

Here’s what you do:

Mix all the ingredients together and that’s it! You’re done.

Then place the trail mix in a food-safe container or package it into individual (and portable!) snack packs for your crew.  

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3 Things You Need to Know About Killing

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on killing

There are few things to understand if you are forced to kill someone or in if someone is trying to kill you.

Most of the people are unaware of them but it is important to understand them.

As I said many times before, most people simply did not face real violence before. I mean killing or fighting for life. That’s good because we live in society where those things are not needed.

On the other side, from the point of survival if you did not went through serious violence before you lack that experience, you do not really know what to expect when SHTF So…

People are easy to kill or people are hard to kill?

Guess what? Both of the statements are actually true. How?

It is simple, first forget about movie scenes where people are flying 10 meters back when you shoot at them with your handgun.

Not too much flying there, when you shoot man from close distance couple of things can happen.

In some cases he just flop (collapse) down, and that’s it. He is gone. And most interesting thing from that experience is sound of his collapse. It is sound like some big bag of something full of wet stuff and some solid elements goes down. Pretty much what our body is.

It is special sound, and you willa remember it to the rest of your life.

Let’s say here that right placement of the shot, right distance, numbers of shots, and your training and calmness brings makes this happen.

In another case, you may find yourself in situation where attacker is coming to you, rapidly closing, you keep firing at him, distance is pretty close, and nothing happens… he is still closing, you shoot and shoot, you are screaming or you just think you are screaming, something loud keeps exploding in your ears, and you are not aware is that your gunshots or what, you are not even sure are guns being fired at all, maybe something is wrong with your gun „other guy’s eyes are getting closer and he is having a knife, he is huge, shit what is going on? Am I going to die? God? Mom?“

And then he is down.

Was that a guy that was hard to kill? Yes, later you figured that you shot him like 6 or 7 times, but not in correct places, he was huge, adrenaline made him forget the pain so…

Both examples are real experiences. There are so many factors that play into this…

So what with the questions about are folks easy or hard to kill, I suggest simple formula, if you are forced to kill someone, consider the fact that it takes lots of factors to be in right place to achieve that, but if if you are in situation when someone is trying to kill you act like it is very easy to get killed.

Long long time ago, when I was beginner in some things, and when I did not know anything about violence, and it was very clear that I will face violence, one old dude gave me advice about similar things, he had pistol with one extra mag.

He said: „ OK, when he is coming to you, you empty magazine into him“ I asked what then? He said “then you reload and empty another magazine into him“
I asked „ Both magazines?“
He said „First two bullets should do the job, but you just go and empty magazines at him“

Killing is nasty job.

Reasons for violence

Huge topic. But lets just say that it will happen, without going too deep into philosophy. Lots of the violence will be „understandable“ in a way, when SHTF. Fighting for food, water, land etc. And as a survivalist you need to be prepared for it. It makes sense to expect it.

But lots of people will have problems to accept violence that will happen without real reasons.

In fact, as I mentioned before, there are huge number of people who are waiting for SHTF to happen and to get violent without real reasons. Murdering, torturing, raping, imprisoning…

You may call them sick people, which they are of course. But more important is to understand that today they are folks who drink beer in local park, or guys with who you watch football games sometimes.

Or simply your peacefully looking neighbour. When SHTF, all kind of scum crawls out of their holes. So accepting violence in general is hard, it is easier when some people at least have some reasons but you can not expect this to be the case always. Prepare your mind for this.

Accepting the violence

You may have luck to live peacefully after seeing, experiencing or committing violence. Maybe you are built for that. Maybe you are what people call “strong man” inside and outside or only on one side.

I think I remember each man who died in front of me or next to me. I remember sounds, smells, pictures.

I forgot names and years, dates or places. But I remember moment when life goes from the eyes of dying man. Or deep last breaths from several people. Or simply smell of defecation when man is gone.

Few times I thought I felt something like weird sensation, couple of seconds after men’s last breath, something like I could felt his soul is leaving him.
Or I simply felt my adrenaline eruptions, or maybe I was losing my mind for a moment, who knows?

With time you learn to cope with those things, to watch people die, either people you loved, or people who die from your hand.

There was urban myth, that one officer from the army was asked something like „Captain, these young guys that we just killed in huge numbers, there are still kids left, they do not know anything, what do we do with them?“

Officer said „ We do what we do, it is our way of life“

It is death. And you simply need to cope with it.

That’s why working on your mindset for survival is so important. Join me at my survival course in Croatia later this year or check out my online course.

Share your thoughts and comments on how you prepare yourself for exposure to violence in our forum or comments below.

No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars

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I found this recipe online but then changed it some mainly by doubling the recipe but there is one other change I will recommend as well.
The bottom layer starts with:
1- 13 oz box graham cracker crumbs
2/3 cup melted butter
1 cup peanut butter

I mixed mine together with my blender. This is where I would make the changed. This was just not sweet at all and it needed to be a bit sweet so I would add about a 1/4 cup sugar to this. You put this in a baking dish that has been lightly oiled and lined with parchment paper that sticks up from the sides so you can remove the whole thing easily later.

You then take two bars (12 oz) of bittersweet chocolate and melt it in a double-boiler or in our case a metal bowl over a pan of water.

You then put this on the graham cracker layer and spread it out as smoothly as possible. Then you melt a little more peanut butter (maybe a quarter cup) in another bowl over the boiling water and you must make lines with this in the chocolate, then you take a toothpick and run it through the lines and then sort of swirl it a bit.

Isn’t it pretty?! It then goes into the refrigerator for about 3 hours to set. When it s ready you lift it out by the parchment paper and cut into pieces.

My daughter took the pictures and does not understand that not every pictures needs to be shot straight down so you can’t really see the layers in this picture but it is a very pretty dessert and would have tasted great had we added that bit of sugar to the bottom layer.

Organic Fertilizer Options (No Poo!)

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Not everyone wants to use manure in their gardens and some may live in areas where they are not allowed to! There are other options out there for organic fertilizer that don’t involve handling #2 while trying to replenish your garden to get #1 results. In a SHTF situation, knowing options to help grow your …

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Avoiding a Terrorist Attack in Your Town

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Between the rise of ISIS, our enmity with other terrorist organizations and the number of illegal aliens who have entered the country through our porous southern border, the risk of terrorist attack seems to be growing by the day. Actually, I think we’re overdue for one and the only reason it hasn’t happened is that […]

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Mophie powerstation XL – A Backup Battery in Your Pocket!

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Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about how I would charge my portable electronic devices in a grid down or bug out situation. Of course I have a generator but I certainly wouldn’t want to start it up and waste precious gasoline just to charge something like a smartphone. This started me on a “quest” to find a quality portable battery pack that would be capable of meeting my needs. I had some very specific requirements in mind for the product that I wanted. I wanted it to have a fairly large battery capacity. I wanted it to be small…

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Movie Monday – Secrets Of The Castle Episode 5

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This Week On Movie Monday

Secrets Of The Castle

Episode 5

How many times have we heard that an EMP would send us back to midevil times?  As disturbing as that statement is, how many of us understand exactly what that would mean?  Have you ever wondered what it would take to build a suitable enclosure for defence?

Well, the BBC has done it again with the miniseries, Secrets of the Castle.  A team of archaeologists and historians will spend six months learning how a castle is built, but also how many of the everyday items such as cookware were produced.

 These films are presented as an exception to the copyright act as fair dealing for the purpose of research, private study, education, parody or satire. See bill c-42 article 29.

Garden Rice Salad

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I made this to night and gave a big bowl of it to my neighbor. They ate it non-stop. It’s like a macaroni salad but with rice, rice should be in your long term food stocks and home garden grown veggies. This Garden Salad is very good, like a comfort food it’s very cheap and easy to make.

Preventing and Treating Scurvy

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  Scurvy is one of those little known diseases in modern times. The reason for that is largely due to the access to foods that are high in ascorbic acid (Vitamin C), not to mention the food that have it added as a preservative. In times past, Scurvy was an ailment mostly suffered by those …

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What We Gave Up | Prepper Central

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What We Gave Up | Prepper Central: America taught the world to be manufacturers. We honored the ingenuity of those who sparked the industrial revolution. We filled our country coast to coast with factories that gave meaningful jobs to the  people.  People who could feed their families till their bellies were overfull and live in a nice place with the wages they were paid.  But we gave it up.

4 Things I Do to Keep Our Grocery Budget at $200/mo. for a Family of Four

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4 Things I Do to Keep Our Grocery Budget at $200/mo. for a Family of Four | The Thrifty Frugal Mom: Here are a few of the things that I’ve learned that have helped keep our grocery/household/toiletries budget at $200/mo. for a family of four.  (Just for reference sake our family consists of two adults who are pretty big eaters, a 3 1/2 yr. old boy with an appetite as big as mine and a 7 mo. old baby girl who at this point is exclusively breastfed.

Power Faith by Gary Bertnick

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   POWER  FAITH
A supernatural confidence clothes the mind and soul
Eyes scan battlefield Earth
Eyes look upon the Garden of the Lord,
The ultimate victory secure, more  than certain
Faith that overcomes the world
Has overcome the “evil one”
Victory always the fresh aroma of Messiah about us;
The new life we now wear
Robes of a Kingdom priest
Robes of a Heavenly minister
A child of the King forever,
Faith sees the all powerful Sword of the Spirit
Revelation knowledge of the only God
Complete power of the Holy Spirit given
The grace of His work in our lives
Our faith, my faith, the knowledge of divine touch
On me, in me, through me,
And for you the same.
Words given from the One “Word made flesh”
Creator of all,
Even the ability of the mind to imagine seemingly without bounds
Thoughts that can lift throughout the Universe,
Yet, feet remain powerfully rooted
Firmly established on earth
While grounded in Heaven,
Multiple dimensions to transcend
Greatest power to soar with those supernatural wings.
Greater strength to walk even the Earth in love each day
“To love our enemies, do good to those who hate us”,
To care for strangers
Honor the fallen, a memorial in memory
To love the orphans, the lonely and vulnerable widows,
Hands of kindness full of gifts to the poor
A lift of encouragement to meet any need
All in the constant sight of our God
Power and wisdom, authority in abundance
Faith to always take the next step
And then the next, and the next
Whether in darkness or light
Until at last we stand in Heaven
Before our King, before His Throne,
The Throne and the King already seen by faith and more,
Always standing before us.

Zyon Systems – Escaping the Urban Jungle

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Cool opportunity from Zyon Systems for those in a major metropolitan areas. They’re looking at doing a training run of bugging out from a city, and are looking for a volunteer to host.

Here’s the details from Zyon:

I am interested in conducting some real world urban escape scenarios from a major metropolitan area. Our base camp, Boise, Idaho, does not fit the bill. If you ever wondered what it would be like to make it home on foot from your office during a major disaster or emergency, here is your chance to test your route and emergency gear. I’m looking for a host city and someone on the ground who is willing to help with logistics.

Here are the criteria I am looking for:

Population of 1,000,000 or greater
Major public transportation infrastructure
At least 15 miles to reach our designated safe zone
At least 1 overnight bivouac site en-route to our designated safe zone
Great food and attractions to enjoy after the scenario is complete!!

If you think your city will provide a good training opportunity and your up to the challenge, let me know. I would be stoked to start planning with you. As a perk, if I choose your city for the scenario, I’ll give you one of our Professional Lite Kits for hosting the training.

If you’re up for the job, head on over to the Zyon Systems blog to give ’em a heads up.

Not quite dead yet…

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Damn…it’s been 20 days since my last post. That’s the longest I’ve gone in…well, years and years.

I am, happy to say, alive and well. Did some travelling and been busy keeping up with real life. Blog took a bit of a back seat for a while — thanks to the faithful for hanging in there, and for the handful of folks who reached out to make sure I was still alive and kickin’.

I am alive, and I’m back at the keyboard…kids have torn several of the keys off said keyboard, but hey.

I am, though, assessing the go-forward plan for T-Blog and my writings and ramblings. Feel the need to re-adjust.

Various possible avenues to pursue…I may take a hiatus from survival blogging to re-visit my fiction that you guys keep poking me for; might focus on quality versus quantity — 1 or 2 longer form posts / week; may change up platform/format — switch over Tumblr, for example. Or might go back to same post frequency / length as before.

Welcome demands / inputs from the Tribe on what you’d like to see.

Wolf out.

Keep Yer Powder Dry

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Keep Your Powder Dry

If you are new or seasoned Prepper, the above adage applies to you. All of us, really. In the times we are in now (Prepping, that is), we need to stock-up and protect our stash. One thing that you are going to need is ammo for your weapons/guns. If you are not doing this now, then you have one expensive club. The point of this snippet is to protect your ammo for the coming years.

Hopefully we never get to a SHTF situation. However, if we do, you are going to want to make sure that your bullets go “Bang” when you squeeze the trigger. Therefore, seal them, and store them in a cool dry place. Out of direct sunlight, too. I use military ammo cans, with good rubber seals, and store bought ammo cans as well. However you could just as easily store them in a bucket if the lid seals with a gasket. Ammo will stay good for MANY decades in this manner. If you haven’t started putting your ammo up in this manner, it is time!

Free Fire Friday (Gun Talk) 26 June 2015

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Host Johnny Kempen broadcasts live from the wilds of Alaska about all things gun related. Call in using +1 (213) 943-3444 when the show is live every Friday at 6pm Pacific/ 9pm Eastern to ask questions and participate in the show. Call in and participate!

Check Out Politics Conservative Podcasts at Blog Talk Radio with Aftermath Radio on BlogTalkRadio

Our Own TV Series!

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The producers of Gold Rush interviewed us this morning.

I know, it’s silly…but we did an interview this morning for it. A production company in London called RAW TV has interviewed our family to potentially be in a short tv series on living the self-sufficient lifestyle.

Apparently this is a popular thing across the pond right now? I guess you can say America is kind of waking up to the idea too. For several years now we’ve been trying to move farther away from the big city and closer to rural America.

We were tired of the crime and pollution…the 90 minute commute time to work (one way!)…and all the other joys that come with living in an overpopulated area. So we moved from Arizona to rural Idaho.

My children now ride their bikes on a private dirt road that has but one other house on it besides mine. We have enough land that we can grow as much food as we want and raise several animals. We currently have around 27 chickens (lost five last weekend to Lucky) and 5 pigs. We’ve planted six fruit trees and one of our apple trees has popped out three little baby apples (we’re SO excited!).

Anyway, this film company thought this was all very interesting and of course my girls thought that having their own reality show would be a hoot. It would be nice to offer something to the American public that was a total polar shift from the Kardashian junk on the tube now.

So what do you think? Would you do a tv show if asked?

Let me know in the comment section…if there is anybody left out there.

OJD

Gorman Falls-Colorado Bend State Park:Hiking in the Texas Hill Country

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Abundant rainfall in the area has Gorman Falls flowing nicely.  The area is protected by the Colorado Bend State Park, so visitors are limited in how close they can get to the falls.  The Texas State Park does provide an area near the falls with great views.

Gorman Falls will make you think an underground cave has erupted to the surface.  Water from Gorman Creek cascades 60 feet forming calcite deposits similar to caverns.

Colorado Bend State Park near Lampasas, Texas does offer several hiking trails including the 3 mile round trip Gorman Falls Trail.  This trail does have many large limestone rocks which can make footing difficult at times.  
As always, bring appropriate attire, footwear, and supplies.  Leave the flip flops in the car.
Hiking to the water line!
Riverwalker

New Prepper Community Tool – Briden Insiders

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We are both proud and exited to be working closely with Briden Solutions to bring a new, feature rich community tool to you all.  June 22nd marked the official launch of Briden Insiders, an innovative and unique tool that makes finding like minded people in your area as simple as a few clicks.
As a bonus, Briden Insiders subscribers benefit from monthly rebates on products that THEY get to help choose!

Listen to what Briden has to say…

“So what is the #1 most useful / powerful / longest shelf life prep item you have? I’ll give you a hint: it’s not in your basement or your garage. Well, at least I hope not. Years of experience have taught me the best prep item that you or I could ever have is like-minded friends.

This has been proven time and time again when I’m camping and forgot my axe and borrowed one from a friend. Or when you’re ascending that mountain peak and it’s the psychological reassurances of your hiking partner that gets you there. I’ll bet there was no psychological multi-tool in your pack that day.

That’s why we have created the Briden Insiders Community. To help you build out that network of friends who can multiply by ten times the effectiveness of the prep food and gear you do have. To fill in the gaps, and lend that supportive hand when needed. Together we are stronger.”

As promised, a few more gems that members will see inside:


Gem #1 – Deal of the Month – a deeply discounted and exclusive deal from Briden Solutions only for our Insiders. June’s Deal of the Month is $43 off the ARK Food Bucket.


Gem #2 – Deal Vote – you get to tell us what you want the Deal of the Month to be. Why should we pick the deal? Vote for your most desired product and Briden will make it the Deal of the Month item. Your wish is our command.


Gem #3 – Wish List – Post products that you have found that you think are amazing. Everyone can vote. We’ll look at the movers and shakers and do our best to bring in these items for you.


Gem #4 – Ask & Answer – An entire section dedicated to learning. Ask your questions to other Insiders. Find out the latest trends, from tenting to foraging, from others with experience.

Making Snares for Survival

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The use of snares has been recorded back as long as there have been records kept! It is a simple, yet effective way to trap fur and meat for warmth and survival. The materials are small, lightweight, and incredibly easy to carry around in your everyday carry bag. Of course, being able to make snares …

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The BOLT Concept

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If you’ve bounced around our website, read any of my books or the books I’ve consulted on (Steven Konkoly’s Perseid Collapse series) or ever listened to any of the podcasts where I’ve been a guest, you have certainly heard of the BOLT Kit.  Simply put, the BOLT Kit is the realization of the vision of what we believe the bug out bag should be.  The difference between every other bug out bag you’ve ever heard of and the BOLT Kit is a focused relocation philosophy that is underpinned by a plan, the gear and a skill set necessary to make it a success.  You can find a more detailed look at the BOLT Kit and what makes it unique here.

 

As great as that original post and the previous paragraph are, this post is about the relocation concept and philosophy that allow the actual BOLT Kit to function effectively.  As I stated in the earlier post…

 

At Practical Tactical, we believe in developing a plan in advance of the chaos that will keep you from becoming a refugee should you ever have to leave your home due to an emergency. We think of it as the software to go along with the hardware (read as gear) of preparedness. If you leave your home or primary residence without a definite destination and a well thought out and practiced plan on how to get there, you have instantly become a refugee and that’s a bad spot to be in. During a time of crisis, history has shown us that the life of a refugee is cold, hard and short. Whatever you do, you do not want to become a refugee.

 

In and of itself, that’s pretty self-explanatory.  Don’t go anywhere unless you know exactly where you’re going, how you’re going to get there and oh by the way, make sure you’ve practiced your plan.  But stick with me as we take a deep dive on this idea and look at it a bit closer.

 

So events have conspired to force you to leave your primary residence and it’s time to go, but where are you headed?  We believe that there are several reasons you may have to leave your home that do not announce themselves as the apocalypse by crashing down in the capital letters with a dramatic score of music.  In other words, there are a wide range of incidents that could force you from your home that are not the end of the world, but more of a personal, local or regional crisis type such as a house fire, a flood or a protracted period of severe weather or severe weather impacts (think crippling ice storm that lasts for weeks or the aftermath of Super Storm Sandy).

 

In these types of events, heading off the grid may not be in the cards for several practical reasons.  The situation could be that despite this event that has thrown your world into chaos, life still goes on all around you and you still have to head in to work or your children still have to go to school.  Who knows.  It could be something as absolutely commonplace as you’ve decided to sell your home and you have to be out of the residence before your new home is ready and you need to stay in the area to finalize the sale.  This is why having a scalable approach built in to your BOLT plan makes a lot of sense.  If the situation dictates you can still fully activate your plan, but if it’s not some teotwawki level event you have given yourself several totally viable BOLT hole options.

 

As a part of your overall all BOLT plan, you develop BOLT holes appropriately distanced from your primary residence according to the incident level and threat you are facing that extend out from the location of your primary residence in concentric circles.  Imagine a ringed target.  Your home is the bulls eye and there are BOLT holes placed along each of the outward expanding rings of the target.  Based on the severity of the incident, your BOLT holes are correspondingly further out on the pattern from your primary location and ideally will cover all 360 degrees of the pattern.

 

BOLT map concept

 

LEVEL ONE:  If a pipe bursts and floods your home or a septic system backs up and renders your primary residence unlivable for a few weeks, you could have a BOLT hole set up just minutes from your location where you have arranged to stay with a neighbor, a family member or a close friend or maybe your plan is to check in to a local hotel for the duration of the event.  If your home is completely destroyed in a tornado or a hurricane and the duration of your crisis event is possibly measured in months and not days or weeks, you may want make other arrangements.  LEVEL TWO:  The next level of your plan would go into effect if the entirety of your local area is impacted by an event like a contaminated water supply or an earthquake that destroys most of the local infrastructure.  In a case like this,  your BOLT hole would need to be farther from your primary residence to take you outside the threat area.  Family and friends are always an option if they are located in the region that fits the plan, but you should always explore all of your options.  As you can see, this concept can have as many rings as you deem necessary (LEVEL THREE, LEVEL FOUR, etc.) based on your situation with the ultimate destination of your BOLT plan taking you to your final and most long term BOLT hole location.  Because no plan holds up to first contact,  you can arrange to preposition a cache of supplies at each of the stops along the way that will supplement your original BOLT Kit and help you make it to your next BOLT hole should the ever evolving situation and facts on the ground dictate you continue to move.

 

I hope this sharpens the BOLT concept for you as you develop your disaster plan.  Keep in mind that in order to successfully effect your own survival…whatever the situation…you must embrace the idea that there is more to the story than your gear or even your plan.  To give yourself the greatest chance of success, you must develop a solid plan, outfit your kit based on that plan and support it with the skill set necessary to use that gear, then put it all to the test in real world practice.  If you are resolute in your motivation and meticulous in your preparation, you will sleep well knowing that you and your family will be ready whenever the balloon goes up and that peace of mind is what the daily hard work of preparedness is all about.

 

Keep up with everything Practical Tactical by subscribing to our mailing list and be sure to LIKE, SHARE and FOLLOW us across all of our social media platforms.

Yeah, what he said…

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As I get older and gradually acquire more wisdom, I become more willing to repeat the words of those who can sums things up more elegantly than I can. After all, why reinvent the wheel? My friend Kevin had a particularly astute observation regarding the recent Charleston shooting and church emergency preparedness. This paragraph sums […]

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Debris Hut – From Basic to Advanced

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Debris hut If you have been studying up on prepping and survival, I am sure you have come across the term “debris hut” by now. Debris huts come in all shapes, sizes, and styles depending on the particularities of the person building them.

When all is said and done the goal of the debris hut is to keep you warm and dry.

The debris you use is whatever material you can scrape up in your local environment. Grasses, leaves, pine needles, and general litter from the forest floor (including dirt and small rocks) can be used. It is best if you can gather long grasses to put a final layer on top to help shed water.

Basic Debris Hut

The debris hut at its most basic is simply a pile of whatever dry material you can scrounge up. The pile must be big enough for you to burrow inside and be insulated, not only from the weather but also from the ground beneath you.

Think about that really big pile of leaves you made as a kid. This is the idea. If you have readily available material, it will be one of the quickest shelters you can literally scrape together.

A Better Option

If you have the time, a more substantial debris hut can be constructed. A simple lean-to or small A-frame is constructed and covered with small sticks. Then the debris you gather is piled on top to form the (hopefully) waterproof cap. If it leaks add more material.

This is a really good option for stealth camping, since once you are done and the shelter has aged a bit, it will just look like a mound in the forest.

First Class Debris Hut

For a top of the line debris hut that you can actually live out of, think about an eastern longhouse, or a double lean-to design. You can make them as long as you need for your required space.

You can put them together with woven saplings or a more rigid framework of limbs. Once the framework is in place fill in the gaps with smaller sticks woven in, and then cover the shelter with a couple feet or more of debris.

You can continually add to this layer as you go about your daily living, and it will continue to get better and better.

If you are short on traditional shelter coverings such as evergreen boughs or tree bark, the debris hut makes a serviceable alternative.

Randy Augsburger writes form an old homestead that has been in his family since 1866

How to Clean, Fillet, Debone and Skin an Alligator

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This is probably not much use for you who don’t live in the deep Southeast but thought I’d pass it along if you’re ever find yourselves in the Florida swamps. It’s not quite like dressing a deer just more work and knowledge of the animal.
This is a 9 foot alligator that when dressed yields 50 lbs of meat that wholesales for about $8.00 a pound.

Whenever I’m in a restaurant that has gator on the menu I order it. No, it doesn’t taste like chicken, but a tough pork however still an interesting meal. It’s generally served breaded and deep fried.

Top 25 Barter Items to Stockpile

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One of the biggest concerns facing us today is the risk we collectively face of a collapse of the dollar. If the dollar were to suddenly lose its value on an international basis, our economy would crash, bringing financial hardship to pretty much everyone. We would see unemployment topping 25%, along with skyrocketing inflation making […]

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Spirulina to Supercharge Your Diet

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I was contacted by the great folks at Nuts.com to share an infographic on Spirulina. You may have never heard of Spirulina before now. Or you may not be aware of all the health benefits of this superfood.

Spirulina is a blue-green algae packed with vitamins and minerals. I have come across spirulina often for it’s weight loss benefits. As a prep and a weight loss benefit Spirulina is excellent. Check out the infographic below to learn more about it.

 

 

 

 

 

Nuts_Spirulina

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Today the Republic Dies with the Passage of the TPP: Welcome to the reality of debt, poverty, and serfdom compliments of your new global corporate leadership.

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There are times when even the most dedicated amongst us have to sit down, take stock, and regroup.  I am physically ill from the treason that just occurred today in

5 Things to Keep in Your Car in Case of Emergencies

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This guest post was written by Lee Flynn.

5 Things to Keep in Your Car in Case of Emergencies
 
There are a few key items that every person should keep in their vehicle for emergencies. If a person becomes stranded, these items can help keep them alive until help arrives. The most important thing is to prepare ahead of time because no one knows when their vehicle might break down, or a natural disaster will strand them without help.
5 Things to Keep in Your Car in Case of Emergencies

There are a few key items that every person should keep in their vehicle for emergencies. If a person becomes stranded, these items can help keep them alive until help arrives. The most important thing is to prepare ahead of time because no one knows when their vehicle might break down, or a natural disaster will strand them without help.
 
 
Canned Goods and Water

FEMA suggests the people who are preparing for emergency situations keep at least a half a gallon of water available per person. The minimum amount of time to prepare for is three days. Keeping canned goods on hand is very helpful because they stay sealed, can be heated over a fire, and can be eaten cold if necessary. FEMA also says that each person should have enough food for at least one full meal a day to maintain strength and energy levels in an emergency situation. Emergency food is a vital part of being prepared for the unexpected. A can opener and a knife are other handy items to keep with food stores.
 
 
First Aid Kit

People should always keep a first aid kit in their vehicle and home at all times. There should be bandages, gauze, antiseptic, tape, scissors, antibiotic cream, tweezers, Q-tips or cotton balls, Benadryl and plastic bags in an emergency first aid kit. Any scrapes or cuts can be cleaned and bandaged right away if the necessary supplies are on hand. If an allergic reaction occurs from being stranded in an area where allergens are present, then the person can counteract the reaction with Benadryl. This medicine is an extremely important step for people who are severely allergic to anything in nature like bees or poison ivy. The plastic bags can be used as a clean surface while bandaging a wound.
 
 
Bible

A Christian will always want to keep an extra Bible handy to help give them strength through the tough time of being stranded. Verses on perseverance are helpful to read in times of despair. The Bible also gives the person something to do to keep their mind off from the danger they are in when emergencies hit.
 
 
Alternative Power Source

Besides keeping a flashlight and extra batteries handy, it is also important to have an extra power source like a jump pack or 12-volt battery. The battery pack can be used to give the car a jump in cold weather to help keep people warm. The alternative power source can also serve to power cell phones to call for help. Another advantage of having an alternative power source is the ability to use it to create a spark to make a fire for warmth. The fire that can be created from the jump pack can also be used to signal for help in case there are no cell signals.
 
 
Warm Clothing and Blankets

Another set of items to keep in a vehicle in case of being stranded are extra blankets, coats, gloves, hats, and scarves. People who are travelling in the winter or in places where the temperatures drop in the night should always have warm items to protect them from hypothermia. Clothing can be layered for comfort and warmth while waiting for help. Every person should have at least one warm blanket ready in case of emergencies.

Keeping an emergency kit in the trunk lets people travel with ease. People never know when they may get stranded in an area where there is very little or no help nearby. Items in the emergency kit should be stored in a cool, dry container like a large storage tote. Using large Ziplock bags for clothing storage is a good way to protect items in case of a flood or a leak in the trunk.

 
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Canada introduces a new emergency alert system

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A new, national, emergency alert system is now in place with the goal to alert you immediately if a potentially life-threatening event threatens your community. Alert Ready delivers public safety messages across the country through local television and radio broadcasters.

Developed in partnership with federal, provincial and territorial emergency management officials, plus Environment Canada and the broadcast industry, Alert Ready is operated by The Weather Network. The system delivers critical warnings to residents through television and radio, as well as through their cable or satellite service provider. Alert Ready provides a simple, easily accessible method to share alerts immediately, so you know when to take action to keep safe.
“From more common alerts such as tornados, floods and wild fires to other less frequent, but equally dangerous events like biohazards or landslides, the Alert Ready system is in place to keep audiences informed of potential dangers,” says Paul Temple, senior vice-president of regulatory and strategic affairs at The Weather Network. “The system benefits all of us by giving everyone immediate exposure to important, life-saving information allowing them to take action and protect themselves, their families and property.”
Canadians can expect the number and type of public safety messages to range from province to province. Participating radio, television, cable and satellite companies will broadcast the alerts that are most relevant to the communities they serve. The scope of alerts covers the examples above, as well as things such as train derailments, industrial fires, water contamination and missing persons, even informational alerts such as frost warnings. The list is not limited to weather or environmental warnings.
More information is available online at AlertReady.ca, including examples of the alert notifications, links to provincial and territorial emergency preparedness resources and helpful videos to assist Canadians in being prepared for emergencies.
Source and credit:www.newscanada.com

The Lever Action Rifle for Prepping and Survival

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1873--outside-spurs-etcThe subject of weapons for survival is hot and heavy in the prepper community. Magazines and blogs offer all kinds of opinions and solutions. If you follow the mainstream “Prepper press” you would be convinced that unless you own the most modern military style battle rife, then you are SOL when SHTF. Not necessarily so.

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Filed under: Azweaponcraftprepper, Rifles Tagged: Beggining preppers, Doomsday prepping, Lever action rifles for prepping, Lever action rifles for survival, New preppers, Personal defense, Survival and Prepping

What Else Do You Need?

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I hope everyone had a great Father’s Day.

Even with a broke back and in constant pain, I had the privilege to spend a few hours with my girls before they were gone and on their own way once again.

With Kylee working all the time, Jessie away at school and Hannah raising her own family, it’s not very often I can get them all together in one place anymore so on those rare occasions it is very special to me.

I am back to work this week and still in a lot of pain, but the bills still have to be paid. Candy is up and around after a major knee issue, but she to is still having to take it easy. We are getting by and doing what we can until we heal. Then, it’s back in game and we will do one final push to get the kitchen done, or most of the way done by August.

See ya in a week or so,
Jerry  

The Bug Out Bike-Nashbar Single Speed 29er Mountain Bike

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The solution for the bug out bike has been delivered.  The unopened box sits waiting to be born into my gear.  The Nashbar Single-Speed 29er Mountain Bike – MEDIUM is a perfect fit for survival situations due to its simplicity, adaptability, and affordability.

The single speed is all about simplicity.  The bug out bike will take the headache out of bike gear maintenance.  Don’t let the racket of a derailleur compromise your stealth.  This single speed does not have shifters or any derailleur.

The mountain bike is also built for adaptability.  The aluminum frame provides an efficient strength to weight ratio for additional durability. The oversized 29er tires provide exceptional mobility over obstacles on and off road. 

Nashbar delivers affordability for the bug out bike.  Finding a quality single speed mountain bike is like looking for supplies after a devastating event.  Usually, all the inexpensive options are heavy and the quality options are overpriced or unavailable.  Nashbar delivers a lightweight single speed at an affordable price tag usually around $400.

Go for the gear that will have you counting down the days to a survival situation like it was Christmas.  Go for simplicity.  Go for adaptability.  Go for affordability.  Go for the Nashbar Single-Speed 29er Mountain bike.

Riding above the water line.

Riverwalker

Episode 61 Ankle Injury

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James and Mike A Day In THe Woods Autoimmune Diseases

James and Mike

 

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Ankle Injury

This week our main topic is all about dealing with an ankle injury. What can seem to be a very minor issue, especially now, can be life threatening during a collapse. Making even the tiniest choir into a heavy burden.

I recently had my worst ankle injury. Coming down out of a tree I rolled it completely sideways. At first I thought it was not that bad since I limped inside. Now more than a week later it is still not completely healed. I employed many tactics to get it healed enough to walk. Even still I was completely incapacitated for almost 4 days.

If for some reason I had needed to bug out on foot during that time I would have been screwed. Using crutches wearing a pack is not something I care to do.

We briefly mention looking into mobility work to strengthen the feet to reduce the risk of rolled ankles. Prevention is the better option here. If you do suffer an ankle injury you WILL be down a few days. Period.

Have any suggestion drop them in the comments below.

 

 

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Ron Paul Says Stock Market Crash Coming

 

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Navigation Term of The Month – Azimuth

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An azimuth is the angular direction to an object.  Azimuths are described commonly in degree increments from either true, magnetic or grid north.

In the world of recreational navigation, GPS receiver operations and orienteering the use of the term “bearing” has become synonymous with azimuth.

Azimuth direction is measured from north clockwise in 360° increments. The point from which the azimuth originates is from the center of an imaginary circle.  This imaginary point is the operator.

Preparing for an EMP Attack – Can Faraday Cages Help?

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faraday cages

An electromagnetic pulse, or EMP, may sound harmless enough but its effects can be devastating. An EMP is essentially an intense burst of energy (for instance a lightning bolt, which is simply a highly concentrated EMP event that is very localized) that, depending on size and intensity, could potentially wipe out electrical and information systems across vast areas.

EMPs can occur naturally, as with lightning and a case we will explore later in this article, as well as through man-made sources such as nuclear or radio-frequency (non-nuclear) weapons. In order to properly prepare for such a phenomenon – whether to defend against Mother Nature or technological warfare – it is imperative to have a clear understanding of what exactly an EMP is in order to properly prepare yourself to defend against it.

faraday cages

Modern day reliance on the power grid leads many preppers to classify EMPs as a serious threat.

The following article will teach you the basics in understanding what an EMP is, how it can be caused, and the short and long term effects. This article also explores Faraday cages and how they can work to protect you against EMPs, discussing the features that are most important and various types you can purchase and build yourself.

What is an EMP and How is it Caused?

An EMP – whether natural or man-made – is a burst of energy with the power to knock out electrical power. The lasting effects of an EMP can range from minor inconvenience to potentially sending the world back to a pre-communications technology ‘dark age,’ so to speak.

Man-Made EMPs

The largest man-made EMP threat looms from nuclear weapon detonation. In what is referred to as the Compton effect (named after physicist Arthur Compton who first theorized of the effect), the theory follows that when a nuclear bomb explodes, the explosion releases electromagnetic energy which binds to molecules in the atmosphere and releases bonded electrons.

These free electrons then interact with Earth’s natural magnetic field creating a current that is powerful enough to decimate electrical currents over a large expanse of area.

faraday cages

As devastating as a nuclear explosion is, the resulting EMP can reach even further than the physical destruction of the blast.

In 1997, Gary Smith, then the director of Applied Physics Lab at John Hopkins University, testified in front of the House National Security Committee that a nuclear detonation at 300 miles above the surface of the Earth could carry enough impact to knock out electrical power to the United States as well as most of Canada and Mexico (click here for source article).

faraday cages

Lights out across the continental U.S.? A disturbing prospect.

However, nuclear weapons are not the only ones capable of generating an EMP; more localized sources of energy such as radio-frequency weapons or non-nuclear EMP devices can also wreak havoc.

Instead of drawing energy from a bomb explosion, these devices use concentrated microwave energy to cause disruptions in electronic equipment and destroy data. While these devices deliver a non-lethal pulse, the damage to electrical systems is no less devastating than with a nuclear detonation.

Naturally Occurring EMPs

faraday cages

The energy of lightning bolts is concentrated and terminates when it strikes the ground.

In addition to lightning, EMPs can also occur naturally as a result of geomagnetic storms. While these occurrences are infrequent, a geomagnetic storm in 1921 affected the United States as well as parts of Europe for two days, closing the New York City railroad system and burning telegraph lines in Sweden.

The cause was later attributed to a group of sunspots that were 1.9 billion square miles in size. Today, a storm of this size would affect over 100 million people and cause widespread panic and chaos due to society’s heavy reliance on electronic devices for everyday life.

faraday cages

Geomagnetic storms can produce an aurora borealis effect, or “northern lights.”

Despite the increased vulnerabilities present in modern times due to the prevalence of electronic devices in managing day-to-day activities, a future natural EMP event will likely come with advanced warning thanks to the benefit of space-monitoring stations.

A solar event would take hours, or even days, to reach Earth’s atmosphere, providing enough warning to safely stow electronics and turn off power systems (while shutting down power will not completely immunize systems against damage, it certainly can reduce the risk).

EMP Damage

EMPs, regardless the source, have the potential to inflict immediate and long-term damage. Depending on the intensity of the pulse, EMPs can start electrical fires, incapacitate power grids, and shut down power sources for refrigeration (causing loss of food and medical supplies), water and sewage services, security systems, and phone and Internet (this would affect financial institutions and ATMs as well as land, sea and air transportation).

faraday cages

Daily productivity would come to halt for many people in the aftermath of an EMP.

Additionally, any cars relying on high-tech computer systems (basically any model manufactured in the last 20 years) would be disabled and back-up generators could experience malfunctions or be ineffective if the existing equipment is damaged.

Recovery from an EMP is dependent on the size of the affected area and location, but could potentially take many years.

What is a Faraday Cage and Can it Protect Against EMPs?

The good news is, you can protect your electronic equipment from an EMP event. A popular method of EMP-proofing is to use a Faraday cage, a protective container equipped with a conductive outer layer that is typically made from aluminum.

faraday cages

Simulators can be used to test the effectiveness of Faraday cages in diverting incoming energy.

These containers function as a shield, protecting the electronic devices inside from EMPs. The term ‘cage’ originates from the fine metal mesh often used as a protective wall; however, research indicates that using a solid sheet of metal may be more effective (more on building your own faraday cage later on).

A Faraday cage can be built to any size to accommodate myriad manner of objects; keep in mind that an EMP can cause a voltage spike powerful enough to fry all manner of electronic devices, including cell phones, computers, radios and appliances. The only must-have in constructing a Faraday cage is that it needs to be thoroughly lined by a conductive material with no gaps.

faraday cages

How Does a Faraday Cage Work?

The manner in which a Faraday cage can protect against an EMP is by using the conductive layer to diffuse energy rays (this is why it is imperative to have no openings through which energy waves can pass). The process is referred to as field cancellation, with ions in the conductive material realigning themselves to cancel the incoming electric field.

faraday cages

The energy flows along the surface rather than through the cage. Image via Britt Selvitelle on Flickr.

How Can the Efficacy of Faraday Cages Be Tested?

There is a very simple way to test the effectiveness of a Faraday cage: place a working cell phone in the cage and try calling it. A properly functioning Faraday cage will block the signal and the call will not go through.

How To Build a Faraday Cage

The best way to prepare yourself and your loved ones for an EMP is to prepare for the aftermath by ensuring you have adequate stockpiles of food, water and other essentials. In the event of widespread electricity loss, store shelves will quickly empty and essential resources will become scarce.

Not only will having the supplies ready beforehand ensure you have enough to last, but also, in a worst-case scenario, there may be civil unrest or upheaval that makes it dangerous or impossible for you to leave your home, necessitating having sufficient supplies on hand. CLICK HERE to read The Bug Out Bag Guide’s comprehensive article on prepping for power grid failure.

power grid failure

In addition to preparing for the aftermath, having a Faraday cage built and ready to go is a measure you may choose to take to protect your household devices in the case of an EMP.

Homemade Faraday Cages for Large Devices

To protect your larger devices – including computers, televisions, tablets and appliances – a large ‘shield room’ can be fashioned by lining a closet with heavy-duty aluminum foil. When constructing your shield room, be sure to pay careful attention to how your foil is placed around the door frame so that it provides a continuous shield.

Laying a piece of cardboard on the floor as you load items into the closet can help prevent damaging the foil. Additionally, check for any outlets in the closet and ensure nothing is plugged into them and that they are also covered with foil.

Self-Sufficient-intro2

If you don’t have a closet ready to go, or are prepping a location that is not in a home, you can build a freestanding Faraday cage by framing a box with 2x4s and then lining the outside with fine, conductive mesh. Remember, the openings on the mesh must be small enough to prevent energy waves from entering.

In place of mesh, you can also use sheets of aluminum or copper for your shielding material. Whatever material you choose, ensure its coverage is continuous over the entire exterior of your cage, or else its shielding effects will be rendered useless.

Homemade Faraday Cages for Small Devices

For smaller devices, something as simple as a shoe box lined with heavy-duty aluminum foil can do the trick. Alternatively, you can wrap your devices in several layers of foil, which also functions as an effective means of protection.

If you are considering building your own Faraday cage, make sure to check out this article and other resources with detailed building instructions.

faraday cages

Cell phones are very susceptible to the burst of energy from an EMP event.

Purchasing a Faraday Cage

You may already have a store bought Faraday cage ready to go and not even be aware of it – your microwave oven. While most people are familiar with their microwave’s ability to keep radiation in, few are aware that a microwave can also keep radiation out. To test your microwave’s effectiveness, unplug it (this is an essential first step, do NOT attempt this exercise while the microwave is plugged in) and run the cell phone test discussed in the previous section, How Can the Efficacy of Faraday Cages Be Tested?

There are also anti-static bags, available in a variety of sizes, that can protect against electrostatic discharge and are easy to store in your get home bag.

Protective Containers Best For
Faraday Cage EMP/ESD Bags – 10 count
Cell phones
USB memory sticks
GPS devices
Radios
Tablets
Laptops
Chargers
Protektive Pak PPK-27534 5 Piece Storage Container and Lid Set
Cell phones
USB memory sticks
GPS devices
Radios
Tablets
Laptops
Chargers
Tech Protect Faraday/EMP Bag Size XXL 32″ x 38″
LCD monitors
Televisions
Towers/hard drives

How Effective is a Faraday Cage?

The effectiveness of your Faraday cage in protecting your devices against an EMP is dependent on a number of factors, including the origin of the EMP, how far your Faraday cage is from the EMP, and the type of rays emitted by the EMP.

High frequency waves require smaller holes in the meshing while short-range EMPs contain gamma rays and xrays that cannot be blocked by only a single layer of heavy-duty foil. To fully protect against EMPs from radiofrequency weapons, thick sheets of metal are required.

What You Need to Know About EMPs and Faraday Cages

In today’s technology-enabled world, it is easy to imagine the devastating consequences that could arise from a prolonged loss of power. A larger EMP that destroys power for several weeks, or even months, could easily lead to civil unrest and throw many first world residents into a survival situation.

faraday cages

The effects of a solar storm may take up to a day to reach Earth.

While Faraday cages provide an effective means of first-line defense against EMPs, remember there may be little to no warning before a strike and you may not have the opportunity to put your Faraday cage to use. The best way to prepare for an EMP event is to prep yourself and your family for the aftermath, ensuring your stockpile of supplies will be adequate to see you through a potentially long-term spell of power-free living.

Your Thoughts

Are you fully prepared in the event of power grid failure? What must-have items have you stored away in case of power failure? Are Faraday cages part of your overall prepping strategy? Do you know of any other means to protect against EMPs? Share your thoughts in the Comments section below, thanks!

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OLALA G3 Power Bank 10400mAh – On The Go Battery Charger

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An item that every emergency kit should have, but a small percentage actually do, is a power bank.  A power bank can charge a depleted cell phone when a conventional outlet isn’t available.  My husband is a Boy Scout leader and he took a power… Read More

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How Far Is Too Far?

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We live in a world obsessed with life, sickness, and death. Plausibly, this is because human life is so frail. It is amazing that humans are so delicate; just a few days without water or only a few minutes without air can end us. Entire television shows are dedicated to people ‘lost’ in the wilderness […]

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5 Natural Ways to Get Rid of Powdery Mildew on Plants

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5 Natural Ways to Get Rid of Powdery Mildew on PlantsPowdery mildew is a common white or gray fungus that can impact a variety of plants. Luckily it’s easily identified and can be treated. Most of the time powdery mildew is more of an aesthetic issue, but it can impact the health of your plants. If left untreated the fungus can start to take nutrients from the plant, leaving plants vulnerable to sunburn and causing leaves to wither.

There are several options for treating powdery mildew organically, so finding the right method for your plants should be a breeze.

Consider these solutions to get rid of powdery mildew on plants:

1. Baking Soda

If, like most families, you have baking soda in your home, this treatment can be a great option for affected plants. Mixing sodium bicarbonate with horticultural oil and diluting with water creates a highly effective treatment for powdery mildew. Test your diluted mixture on a small area of the plant first to make sure it isn’t too concentrated.

The drawbacks of baking soda? It can build up in the soil, and requires a new application every week. Baking soda is more effective as a preventative measure than as a cure. 

2. Garlic

Garlic extract is a perfect home remedy that’s not only easy to make, but organic and safe for your family and plants. To make this treatment, blend 2 bulbs of fresh garlic and a few drops of liquid soap with a quart of water. Once the mixture is well blended, strain and refrigerate. Dilute this concentrate with 1:10 parts water before spraying plants to prevent germination of spores. Once the powdery mildew spores have germinated, a much higher concentration of garlic extract is required to cure the mildew. 

3. Milk

Cow milk diluted with water is a common natural way to get rid of powdery mildew, and almost everyone has milk in their home. Milk may be especially effective for zucchini and other types of squash but will work on everything from melons to roses. Treat powdery mildew every week but alternate between methods.

4. Mouthwash

Mouthwash is made to kill germs, which means it will also destroy powdery mildew spores. Mouthwash is very potent so be sure to test a small part of the plant first and dilute with water at a ratio of 3 parts water to 1 part mouthwash.

5. Water

Unlike most mildews, powdery mildew thrives in dry conditions, so watering your plants can help treat or prevent mildew. Overwatering your plants can lead to different problems so it’s best to use this method sparingly. In fact, it’s a good idea to alternate treatment methods anyway, since building a resistance to treatment methods is a possible concern.

How to Prevent Powdery Mildew

While powdery mildew is rarely fatal for plants, it’s a hassle nonetheless. Prevention methods can mean a lot less work later, since curing plants is always harder than preventing illness.

  • Avoid shady areas to make sure plants get plenty of sunlight.
  • Remove any dead foliage from the area around the plants.
  • Give plants plenty of space to provide airflow.
  • Make sure soil is draining properly.
  • Avoid over-fertilizing plants.

Treating common diseases organically will keep your garden healthy and safe for the environment and your loved ones. With all the different treatment options available, it shouldn’t be difficult to find one that works for your garden. So when powdery mildew appears, fight back and take control of your garden once more.

This article may contain affiliate links. For more information, read the Disclaimers & Disclosures here. Thank you for your support!

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How to Communicate in SHTF

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How to Communicate in SHTFWe are so connected in our everyday world, even thinking about existing without cell phones scares people more than they are willing to admit. That is only one of the reasons why it is so important to prepare for the possibility that our main lines of communication may be compromised. In a disaster situation, radio communication may be the only way to find important news, communicate with others, and stay up to date on weather and emergency situations. That is why any prepared family should not only have emergency communication gear in your supply but also to know a few tips to make radio communication effective in a survival situation.

Types of Emergency Communication

You will want to be able to not only receive the incoming communication, but you will want to find a way to get your messages out there. These main types of emergency communication methods could be the lifeline that you family needs in a survival situation. Most preppers make sure they are equipped to handle more than one emergency communication situations. So you will want to diversify and be sure you have more than one way to get in touch with others in the outside world.

Emergency and 2 Way Radios

Any Emergency Radio worth it’s salt is going to have a 2-way option, if you can’t call out for help then what is the purpose? While there are laws that require you to be licensed to broadcast on certain radio channels, these rules and regulations will likely be thrown out the window in emergency situations. Generally speaking, however, anyone can broadcast on General Mobile Radio Service, or GMRS radios, as well as FRS, Family Radio Service radios (Visit the Communication Guide for more information).  No matter how you do it, having the access to speak if you need help will be integral to your survival.

Make sure that whatever radio you get, you consider power options. If the grid is down, you may opt for a solar or hand-crank device. Most radios usually have a battery

DeLorme inReach Satellite Phone

DeLorme inReach Satellite Phone

option too. You will also want to make sure your radio can reach special channels like the NOAA Weather Radio service. (We have a listing of important frequencies later in the post).

Satellite Phones

Satellite phones are an excellent option if the regular cell towers go down. Especially in the case of a less widespread disaster, where phone service is only out in a selective area, these little guys give you the communication power that others just simply won’t have. Many satellite phones have come a long way over the past few years with the more regular use of texting and e-mailing, as voice communication can be spotty, what is typed will come across clear. Satellite phones are excellent tools and can keep you connected when you need it most.

CB Radios

CBs are excellent short range communications devices, but they have their limitations. Since they have fallen out of popularity in recent years, less people have them, meaning less people re there if you are in need of help.

4 PACK Motorola 23-Mile Range 22-Channel FRS/GMRS 2 Way Radio

However, if you are traveling a popular highway or trucking area, you may find a CB radio will offer invaluable information that is unlike what you will get on the regular radio waves.

Walkie Talkies

Being able to communicate easily with your immediate family could save someone’s life in a survival situation. Arm your family with short range communication radios so you can stay in touch in the event that you need to be separated. This is especially important if you have children and a significant other in your survival scenario.

 

Important Communication Information Cheat Sheet

Emergency Radio Frequencies

NOAA – National Weather Radio  requires a special radio receiver or scanner capable of picking up the proper signal. Broadcasts are found in the VHF public service band at these seven frequencies (MHz):

162.400
162.425
162.450
162.475
162.500
162.525
162.550

Other Frequencies

34.90      Used by National Guard during emergencies
39.46      Used by inter-department emergency – local and state police forces
47.42      Used by the Red Cross for relief operations
154.28   Used for communications by local fire departments; sometimes 154.265 and 154.295
155.160  Used for by local and state agencies during search and rescue operations
155.475  Used by local and state police forces
163.4875 Used nationwide by the National Guard during emergencies.
163.5125 The national disaster preparedness frequency

I also recommend researching your local radio frequencies and writing down the information in your emergency binder.

Morse Code

Morse code may also prove a useful communication tool, especially if you need to communicate quietly or in a covert situation. This can actually be a fun game to teach the kids morse code… they love to learn different ways to communicate, and in a way can be their own secret language to use.

  • A .-Morse Code Alphabet
  • B -…
  • C -.-.
  • D -..
  • E .
  • F ..-.
  • G –.
  • H ….
  • I ..
  • J .—
  • K -.-
  • L .-..
  • M —
  • N -.
  • O —
  • P .–.
  • Q –.-
  • R .-.
  • S …
  • T –
  • U ..-
  • V …-
  • W .–
  • X -..-
  • Y -.–
  • Z –..

CB Ettiquette & Lingo

Now CB radio is open to the public. If you are  not familiar with CB radios, then you may consider getting on the bandwagon now. CBs used to be much more popular in the days before cell phones and the internet, in fact in a lot of ways the CB was the first chatroom, opening the world to making connections with others within a short range of you.

Cobra 40 Channel CB Radio with NOAA Weather Radio

Cobra 40 Channel CB Radio with NOAA Weather Radio

While it is less social now, truckers specifically use CB radios to keep in contact, and being able to tap into this mode of communication is helpful whether you are stationary or on the road. A simple CB unit, portable or home version, and an antenna are all you need to get started.
However, there are a few rules in the CB world, and knowing how to abide by them will make it easier to communicate in a disaster situation. First, know your channels. There are 40 channels on a CB radio, and most are available and open for common use. Channel 9 is the one you’ll want to remember, if it is an emergency and you need assistance, broadcast on channel 9. If you are traveling and want to join in with other travelers and truckers, tune to channel 19.

I recommend listening to some CB conversations before a disaster or accident hits, that will make it easier to communicate if you are having trouble and need some assistance. Here’s a few helpful codes:

  • 10-1: Receiving Poorly
  • 10-4: Ok, Message Received
  • 10-5: Relay Message
  • 10-6: Busy- Stand By
  • 10-9: Repeat Message
  • 10-10: Transmission Completed, standing by
  • 10-11: Talking too Fast
  • 10-12: Quiet, Visitors Present
  • 10-13: Advise Weather/Road Conditions
  • 10-20: Location
  • 10-42: Traffic Accident
  • 10-99: Mission completed

Truckers, particularly, have quite the interesting slang when related to talking over the CB. While it is unnecessary to know this particular lingo in a survival situation, you may find a lot of the common CB language helpful and pretty entertaining.

International Phonetic Alphabet

When communication is spotty at best sometimes you must revert to using the phonetic alphabet at times to get your message clearly across. Committing these to memory is a smart move for any prepper to take.Phonetic Alphabet

  • Alpha
  • Bravo
  • Charlie
  • Delta
  • Echo
  • Foxtrot
  • Golf
  • Hotel
  • India
  • Juliet
  • Kilo
  • Lima
  • Mike
  • November
  • Oscar
  • Papa
  • Quebec
  • Romeo
  • Sierra
  • Tango
  • Uniform
  • Victor
  • Whiskey
  • X ray
  • Yankee
  •  Zulu

 Free Printables!

I have included some printable, emergency cards for Morse Code and the Phonetic Alphabet that you can keep in your wallet or purse for emergency communication situations. I’ve also included a full printable sheet for your emergency binder that has all this emergency communication information in one handy place.

 

The post How to Communicate in SHTF appeared first on USPreppers.

Fire Extinguishers For Your Preps

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41wWZX5u0nLGo to any prepper website or blog, and you will find all kinds of ways to start a fire. And some of them are pretty darned creative. But you also need to be able to put a fire out in a hurry if you, or someone else, creates one that is a danger.

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Filed under: Azweaponcraftprepper, Survival and Prepping Tagged: Beggining preppers, Doomsday prepping, Fire Extinguishers for Prepping, New preppers, Personal defense, Survival and Prepping

How to DIY your Home Security

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If you’re serious about preparing yourself and your family against unexpected disasters and emergencies, then you ought not to neglect the physical security of your residence. When there’s a breakdown in the normal functioning of things, police and other authorities may be busy and unable to respond. You might therefore be on your own to deal with looters, burglars, and other people who are trying to take advantage of the situation.

By implementing a fully featured security system, you can deter potential criminals from interfering with your life because they might be put off if they realize that you’re protected. Automatic exterior lights are a cost-effective way of letting passers-by know that you have your eye on them and that you’re not leaving your safety up to chance. If you connect your lights to a motion sensor, you’ll not only be able to turn them on instantly when someone suspicious arrives, but you’ll also be notified of where a potential intruder is located.

In order to prevent unauthorized access, you should make sure that your doors and windows are secure. All locks should function properly, and there should be no gaps or imperfections in the frames. Glass doors and windows should be made of a shatterproof material (ones made by Pella have been well reviewed) so that nobody can gain entry to your home by breaking them. Fences and gates can act as obstacles and give you more time to deal with the situation if trouble should develop.

Commercial alarm systems allow you to enlist the aid of security professionals in the event of something untoward happening. Even in the event of a major catastrophe preventing help from arriving, a loud alarm going off may be all that’s needed to send a criminal fleeing. If you’re looking for a more inexpensive option than expertly installed equipment and a long-term service contract, then you may wish to consider a DIY setup. Most of the components for a homebrew alarm system can be sourced from your local home improvement retailer. Now that many smarthome devices are coming on the market, it’s easier than ever before to customize and install your own personalized alarms and related equipment. You should check regularly to make sure all batteries are charged and the components are working as intended.

With a video surveillance system, you can proactively monitor the area around your residence instead of waiting for a trespasser to come to you. As always, the more information and time you have to prepare, the better your responses are likely to be. Be sure to maintain camera coverage in all directions – people with ill intentions may not necessarily waltz right up to your front door.

It’s probably preferable to have a few ways of safeguarding your property that don’t require technology in case you’re confronted with a scenario wherein replacement parts or electricity is hard to come by. By using shrubs with thorns in strategic locations around the premises, you can make it painful for anyone to lurk around where they’re not supposed to be. Traps set up around the grounds can also make things rough for any unauthorized individuals although you may be legally liable for any injuries that result. Finally, a guard dog can ward off intruders, alert you to anything you need to be aware of and help defend you and your family from any threats.

The greatest hazard to humans in this world is probably other humans, and this will most likely become even more true when there’s an emergency or serious upheaval. By taking steps now in advance, you can prepare yourself for the worst. There are plenty of tools at your disposal, and an effective security solution depends upon the skillful and versatile employment of as many of them as possible, acting in concert to thwart perils to your well-being.

Elizabeth Eckhart is a freelance writer with an interest in energy conservation, living off the grid and the outdoors. You can link to her on Twitter at @elizeckhart

The UBER Guide to DIY Food Storage with Mylar Bags, O2 Absorbers and Buckets!

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Uber Guide to Food Storage

We all NEED food!  In any real disruption, whether that be short or long term, people realize that they need or will need food.  If you doubt, or need a reminder, just think back to pictures of grocery store shelves during winter storms or hurricanes.  The problem with “ordinary” people (or maybe we should call them irresponsible), is that they wait till the disruption is right at their doorstep!

I knew when I started in preparedness that I didn’t want to be irresponsible.  I have a family and I wanted to make sure that their needs are met if I can help it.  So to me, as a father and husband, it is a no brainer to have long term food storage!

My good friend Gaye Levy of Backdoor Survival says it well in her book, The Prepper’s Guide to Food Storage

When most people start thinking about preparedness, they focus on food. Not shelter, gear, sanitation, power, self-defense or the myriad of other concerns that need to be addressed following an emergency or disaster situation. Quite simply, food is the number one concern people have second only to their concern for having an adequate supply of water.

 

What type of food should you buy, where should you buy it, and how should you store it? You are going to learn that acquiring food for the preparedness pantry does not have to be overwhelming. Furthermore, long-term emergency food storage is something you can do over the course of a week, a month, or even longer, if that is what it takes.

 

Perhaps even more important, when you have filled your storage pantry, you will be secure in the knowledge that if a disaster strikes, you will have plenty of food to feed your family, along with a few treats and surprises along the way.

 

My Long Term Food Storage Dilemma

 

After doing my due diligence and researching long term food storage, I soon realized that I wouldn’t be able to afford to purchase those big pallets of food for my whole family.  It would have been nice and easy to place an order online and then just park all that food in a room, but it wasn’t happening for my budget, and I bet it isn’t happening for your own budget either.

There is also the issue with what your family will eat.  Many of those long term food packs come with food that your family might not like and won’t eat.  Yeah, I know.  In an emergency, if they were starving, they would eat it.  But still…why push it.

I knew I wanted to store long term food for my family, the issue was how and how much.  It wasn’t long that I found that you could store food long term in mylar bags with oxygen absorbers inside of plastic 5 gallon buckets.

Side Note: Now, I will tell you here that I think the easiest form of food storage is buying canned foods at your local grocery store.  You can easily create a 30 day menu by using cans.  I wrote the article, Anyone Can Do It – Fool Proof Food Storage, which provides information to an old Y2K website with a ton of recipes…no guessing!  Below that article, you will find a ton of links to other types of food storage from many of my friends who also blog about preparedness.  BUT – canned foods aren’t meant to last for the “LONG TERM.”

The only thing that worried me about making my own long term food storage buckets was ME!  At that time, there wasn’t as much information about making your own food storage buckets like now!  What if I screwed something up and the food that my family depended on went bad and we were caught without any food during a long term crisis?  It’s kind of scary if you think about it, but you have to GET OVER IT!

Making your own long term food storage buckets is very easy.  I’m going to list out the steps in a 1,2,3 format.  But if you need more encouragement, I’m going to include so many links after my steps that you are going to OD on information and feel like a long term food storage expert!

 

Steps to Making Your Own Long Term Food Storage Buckets

 

1.  Acquire Your Supplies. 

You will need mylar bags, O2 absorbers, 5 gallon buckets w/ lids, a mallet, a pail or bucket opener, an iron, a 2×4 board and the food you want to store.

Mylar Bags – Here you have a few options.  You can go with big 5 gallon bag sizes or you can go with 1 gallon bag sizes and place 4-5 in each 5 gallon bucket.  You really want to purchase mylar bags that have a decent thickness.  I usually get 4mil thick bags from Amazon.

I have a big family, with big boys.  I chose to use the big 5 gallon size bags.  I figure that we are going to eat!  If you are putting together buckets for just two people, you might want to use the 1 gallon size bags and place various types of food in one bucket.

O2 Absorbers – O2 absorbers will absorb the oxygen that you can’t push out of the mylar bag.  Various sizes of bags require various cc’s of oxygen absorbers.

To take the guess work out of it though, you can purchase packs of mylar bags with O2 absorbers.  Like I said, I purchase them from Amazon already put together.

5 gallon buckets – You don’t really NEED buckets, but you should use them!  The buckets are  there to protect the mylar bags from being punctured by accident or by little fury critters.  They will also serve as an easy place to store your food when you open up your mylar bags.  I purchase the orange buckets from Home Depot.  I purchase the lids there too.  Home Depot has also started selling gamma lids, lids that easily screw off.  But you can also purchase them on Amazon.

Mallet – You will need this to hammer down the lids on the buckets after you finish sealing your bags.

Bucket/Pail Opener – This isn’t necessary, but will save your nails and fingers when you try to open your buckets.  They are cheap and you will be glad you have one.  You can purchase them on Amazon too.

Food – If you are doing this on the cheap, you probably want to stick with white rice, beans and pasta.  All of these foods will last for a very long time.  This will get you started, but you might want to add more.  Like for example, you might want to store sugar.  You can put that in a mylar bag, but don’t include an O2 absorber.  It will turn your sugar into a hard block.  For other examples of foods that you can store, see the links below.

Iron and 2×4 board – When you get ready to seal your mylar bags, you will place the top of the bag on the board and then iron over it.  I used an old iron we didn’t throw out and I had a 2×4 just laying around in the garage.

2.Fill Up the Bags

First thing – Do not open the package that the O2 absorbers come in until you are ready to start sealing your mylar bags!  Once you open the O2 package, the absorbers start working.  You want to wait until you are really ready.

Setup your buckets in a line or in a work area that will allow you to move easily.  Turn on your iron, connect with an extension cord if it makes it easier, and set it on high.

Place your mylar bags inside the buckets and pour your food inside. You might want to go ahead and label your lids with a Sharpie and place it under the buckets of food so you don’t forget what is inside each bucket…in case you are the forgetful type! 😉  Make sure you leave some space at the top of the bag so it can seal easily.

Shake the buckets to make sure you don’t have any air pockets.  Once all your food is in mylar bags, inside of the buckets, open up your O2 absorbers and drop the appropriate size of O2 absorber inside each bucket.

Grab the 2×4 board, lay it across a portion of the mylar bag, at the top, and run the iron over it.  You don’t have to hold it over too long.  You will see it seal. (see the Yeager vid below)  Again, this is easier than it might sound.  You want to leave a portion of the bag unsealed, like at the end.  The reason is that you want to push out as much air as possible.  I have heard that you can get a long tube/straw and place it on one side of the mylar bag to help get the last bit of air out.

After you are comfortable with pushing as much air out of the bags that you can get, then completely seal the bag.  You might want to make a diagonal seal at the end of the bag to close it off.  (The first tutorial link I link to below will show you what I mean)

At this point, you can wait till the next day to make sure that the bags sealed before you hammer on the lid.  You will notice that the bags will become “tight” and firm as the O2 is absorbed.

Any O2 absorbers that you have left can go into a mason jar.  I don’t really know how long this would work because I have always used all of mine!

3. After you are comfortable with your sealed bags, you can place the lid on them and use the mallet to set the lids in place.  You will notice that the lids from Home Depot have a rubber seal around the bottom.  This makes for a very tight seal.

4.  Your buckets should already be labeled, so just find a cool, dark place to store them, like in a closet or an unused room.  Your buckets should last for many, many, years.

The above list of steps is what I did to make my long term food storage buckets.  It is very easy to do.  However, I know that I wanted to see pics and video.  Again, you want to feel comfortable that you did everything correctly, your family is depending on you!

Below you will find some of the best tutorials and links that you will want to read/watch to help you feel more comfortable.  All of these articles were linked on Prepper Website, so you know they are good! :-)

Search Amazon for Great Deals on Purchasing Mylar Bags and Oxygen Absorbers!

 

DIY Long Term Food Storage Tutorials

How to Seal a Mylar Bag in a 5-gallon bucket (Modern Survival Blog) – This tutorial has the pic of using the diagonal seal I spoke about above.

Supersizing Food Storage with BUCKETS  (Prepared Housewives) – Good info. with a lot of pics!

VID: Long Term Food Storage (Survive2Day) – If you are looking for a video to walk you through the process, you might want to watch this one!

VID: Beginners Guide to Food Storage (James Yeager) – Yes, that James Yeager, often does videos on preparedness.  He walks through putting together food buckets in this video along with other food storage basics!

How to Seal Food in Mylar Bags (Backdoor Survival) – Good tutorial with a lot of pics!

Sealing Food in Five Gallon Buckets is an Important Skill for Preppers (Preparedness Advice Blog)

VID: Long Term Food Storage: Dry Pasta in Mylar Bags (The Modern Survivalist) – This is a short video where Ferfal uses a hair straightener to seal a small mylar package.

Food Storage: Packing pails for long term storage ( Candian Preppers Network)

 

Tips & Tricks You Want to Know About Your DIY Long Term Food Buckets

 

Food Storage Demystified – (Ready Nutrition) – Lots of great tips to help you understand more about your food buckets!

Food Grade Buckets – (5 Gallon Ideas) – Understand the difference between food grade and non-food grade buckets!

Oxygen Absorbers For 5-Gallon Food Storage (Modern Survival Blog)

FREE – Food Storage Inventory Spreadsheets You Can Download For Free (Prepared Housewives) – Who doesn’t like FREE stuff?

A Food Storage Tip When Using Mylar Bags (Ed that Matters) – A great tip for storing rice and beans together in the same 5 gallon bucket!

Survival Basics: Using Mylar Bags for Food Storage (Backdoor Survival) – Some great tips!

Guide to Long Term Food Storage (The Daily Prep) – A graphic resource with links to specific topics and questions you might have.

The 15 Commandments of Food Storage (Survival Mom) – Just good info.

How Many Buckets of Freedom Do You Have? (The Organic Prepper) – Some thoughts on why it is important to have buckets of food!

Food Storage (Peak Prosperity) – There is a ton of info. here regarding food storage of all types.  I’m including it because it does discuss long term food buckets.

8 Tips For Storing Food in Mylar Bags  (Food Storage & Survival) – Great tips!

How Much Food Will Fit in a 5 Gallon Bucket? (Preparedness Advice Blog) – Good info.

12 Staples of Long Term Food Storage (US Prepper’s) – A good list of food to have.

 

3 Great Resources

 

The Prepper’s Cookbook (Tess Pennington) – This book is one of the best when it comes to cooking with your food storage.  The book contains a ton of recipes, charts, how-to store food for long term food storage (various ways), food calculator and more!  Read the review hereThe book has 4.5 stars and 209 reviews on Amazon.  It is definitely one you want in your preparedness library!

The Prepper’s Guide to Food Storage (Gaye Levy) – This ebook is concise and packs a powerful punch.  You can read my review here.  The book has 4 stars and 33 reviews on Amazon.  You can often find it for $.99!

The Pantry Primer: A Prepper’s Guide to Whole Food on a Half-Price Budget (Daisy Luther) – I haven’t done a book review on this book.  But knowing Daisy and reading all the articles that she puts out on her website, I know it is going to be good.  The book covers building your pantry, cutting costs, storing food and also contains recipes.

 

Spices & Herbs?

 

I’m sure that your family will be very appreciative of all your efforts to provide food for extended emergencies.  However, with all the bulk food that you store, you might find that eating becomes boring.  Since food is so important to us, why not prepare a little bit more to have “good food” that your family would eat.

One thing that you will want to do is to store spices and herbs to make your food storage have various tastes.  Spices, seasonings and herbs usually store very well.  You might also want to grow your own herbs.  Having fresh herbs is easy, frugal and can be done in your big garden or even in containers.  Below you will find some good articles to reference.

Long Term Storage for Spices (Florida Hillbilly)

Food Storage: Storing Herbs and Spices for Long Term Storage (Self-Reliant School)

The Spice of Life (Paratus Familia Blog)

Food Storage, Bulk Spices, And My Must Haves (New Life on a Homestead)

10 Spice Blend Recipes (The Mountain Rose Blog)

Drying Herbs? Here’s what you do with them next (I Am Liberty)

How Do I Store That? Dried Herbs (Preparedness Mama)

Herb Gardening Basics (Simply Living Simply)

 

Closing

 

Food storage makes sense!  You know it does or you wouldn’t have read this article.  If you are looking for other ways to store food, including more tips, tricks and cooking ideas, take a look at the “Food Storage” tag on Prepper Website.  There you will find pages and pages of great food storage articles.  Just a note – at the bottom of each tag page, there is a link to take you to the next page!

Do you have a favorite food storage article or tip?  Link it below in the comments!

Peace,
Todd

Search Amazon for Great Deals on Purchasing Mylar Bags and Oxygen Absorbers!

UTI Home Remedies To Calm Pain & Burning Urination

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Multiple white blood cells in urine indicate UTI  There are few situations that can be as uncomfortable as a urinary tract infection, or more commonly referred to as a UTI. In the most fundamental sense, a UTI is an infection that afflicts the bladder, urethra,…

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Merrick Backcountry Raw Infused Dog Food

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Coco the Wonder Dog

I’ve noticed that as my chocolate lab Coco has gotten older her eating habits have changed. We rescued Coco as a young dog approximately two years old so we never really had her as a puppy. When she was young she would devour any amount of food that we put out for her as soon as the bowl hit the ground. That led to us splitting her food into two servings during the day so that she wouldn’t eat her entire quota of food in the morning and be hungry and begging for food the rest of the day.

Now, as an eight year old “senior” dog Coco has lower energy needs than those of a young pup. She tends to eat when she wants and only as much as she wants. Some days she’ll still eat all two cups of her kibble right away, other times she’ll snack when she feels like it, and sometimes she’ll look at it and look back at me as if to say “The exact same kibble again dad? Really?”, and proceed to wait me out to see if she gets offered something better – she usually wins 🙂

Recently she has slowed down eating her regular kibble and I felt it was time to make a change. I didn’t want to change just for the sake of it or just for a new variety or flavor, I felt it was time to change the quality of her food and toward something that would give a senior dog like her what she needs.

Merrick Backcountry ultimate ancestral canine diet

Merrick Backcountry Dog Food Review

Dogs crave a protein-rich diet the way nature intended. The Merrick Backcountry ultimate ancestral canine diet recipes provide this by combining two quality components. The first is a protein rich kibble that is made with deboned meat as the number one ingredient. It is grain free with no gluten ingredients. The second is freeze-dried real raw meat pieces in a pure state for easy digestion.

This combination is designed to provide dogs with the nutritional benefits of a raw diet they would have discovered in the wild, but in a convenient recipe that’s easy to serve at home or on the move. Furthermore it is made in the USA in Merrick’s own organically certified kitchens. Their foods do not contain any ingredients from China.

Merrick Backcountry Dog Food Review

Transitioning between dog foods

According to our veterinarian it’s never good to transition from one type of dog food to another too quickly. Doing so can result in upset stomachs and unwanted accidents, it’s also just rough on your best four-legged friend. The correct way to transition between dog foods is to slowly mix the new food into your dog’s current food over the course of 5-7 days. You should continuously increase the amount of the new food each day while decreasing the amount of their current food – always maintaining the correct total amount (E.g. 2 cups) that your dog needs to be fed. For example:

  • Day 1-2: 25% new / 75% previous
  • Day 3-4: 50% new / 50% previous
  • Day 5-6: 75% new / 25% previous
  • Day 7: 100% new

How much should you feed your dog?

Based on the recommendation of Coco’s veterinarian I have been feeding her four cups of dry food a day. I break that into two meals, breakfast and dinner each consisting of two cups. That has been working well for several years, but it is always a good idea to know how that was arrived at. If you don’t know how to calculate how much to feed your dog here is an example that shows the math.

Coco currently weighs 88lbs and that is just about right at her ideal weight. Her level of activity is pretty much normal – she is relaxed most of the week with regular walks and the usual ball throwing, then longer hikes and games on weekends. , and the number of calories per cup for her new Merrick Backcountry Raw Infused Pacific Catch recipe is 362 kcal. Using an online dog food calculator and entering in her numbers (88 lbs / normal activity level / 362 kcal per cup of food) the estimated amount of food Coco needs each day in order to maintain her weight is 1,750 kcal per day or 4.8 cups of dog food.

Merrick Backcountry Dog Food Review

On the side of the Merrick Backcountry dog food bag there is also a basic feeding guide table. It lists the amount of calories and cups of food your dog needs per day based on the ideal body weight. Using the same numbers (Coco’s weight is 88 lbs) the recommended serving size for Coco based on the Merrick guide is 1,778 kcal per day or five cups. The Merrick Backcountry guide is based on goal weights in ten-pound increments so I used the 90 lb option as it was the closest to 88lbs. So Coco would be slightly under those amounts which means that both the online dog food calculator and the Merrick Backcountry feeding guide provided very similar results.

Note: Online calculators are intended for educational purposes and should not be used as a substitute for the expert advice from your veterinarian. Every dog is unique, breeds, age, size, level of activity.

Results so far

I’ve already noticed that Coco seems to be enjoying her food much more again. If it were just because of the change in taste from her old food I’d expect to see her eagerness wain after a week or two, but she seems genuinely ready for her food each morning and evening – and she’s back to finishing what’s in her bowl. Even if she were still snacking, and I expect that time will come as it starts getting hotter during the day, I’m excited about the quality of the ingredients in the Merrick Backcountry Raw Infused line of dog foods. Coco’s coat has an increased shine to it from the omega fatty acid rich formula and her breath (and gas) doesn’t smell as bad as it used to – sorry, but you notice these things when you have a dog sleeping next to you all day in a small home office.

Merrick Backcountry Dog Food Review

We’re also taking Merrick Backcountry Raw Infused kibble with us on hikes so that she can continue to eat the food she is used to over the course of the hike rather than have a sudden change while outside, which can lead to stomach issues. The small size of the kibble definitely makes packing her food in her own backpack much easier.

Disclosure: The author of Brian’s Backpacking Blog was provided with complimentary samples of this product by Merrick Pet Foods for the purpose of evaluation, testing, and review. His thoughts are his own.

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Long Shelf Life Foods – 12 Staples of Long Term Food Storage

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Long Shelf Life Foods - 12 Staples of Long Term Storage (And How to Store them!)One of the best ways to ensure your family is prepared for no matter what is to have a useful, and plentiful, supply of stored food. I love MREs and freeze dried meals, specifically because they are so easy to prepare and work so great if we have to bug out. However, to supplement your supply, there is nothing like storing some basic food staples to make sure your family never goes hungry.

Most of these items, perfect for long term storage, are extremely basic, and generally cheap to obtain, but they pack a major nutritional punch and can be cooked and baked into hundreds of different meals to keep your family, fed and satisfied. In addition, most of these items will have excellent barter potential too.

1. Rice

All kinds of white rice are acceptable for long term storage. When stored properly, rice can stay good for 30 years or more making is a perfect long term storage food item. To Properly Store Rice: Pack it in an airtight container, or food grade bucket, to keep oxygen and pests out. Keep it in a cool, dry area.

2. Flour

Flour, wheat or white, can stay good on the shelf for 5 to 10 years. If you have the space, freezing your flour can extend it’s life exponentially. To Properly Store Flour: You can store in the traditional paper sack they come in if you can keep it refrigerated, but it is better to pack your flour in an airtight bag or storage bucket and keep in a dry, cold place – the colder the better.

Granulated Honey is Ready and Easy to Store

Granulated Honey is Ready and Easy to Store

3. Honey

Honey is a great item to have on hand, not only is it a great sweetener, but it has medicinal properties and it enjoyed by kids and adults alike. The best part is, it will not go bad. Honey may change it’s color, or even crystallized a bit, but none of that changes the fact that it is still good to it. You can actually buy granulated honey, which is all ready for long term storage and can be used like sugar, or reconstituted the gooey stuff itself. To Properly Store Honey: keep it in an airtight jar and keep in a cool dry place away from sunlight if possible. If the honey crystallizes, you can run warm water over the jar, or add small amounts of water and stir, to reconstitute it.

4. Salt

Salt may be one of the most important items you can stockpile. Not only is it important in everyday cooking, but it’s ability to preserve food will make it a popular item to not only have, but to barter with as well. To Properly Store Salt: Salt is easy to store, just keep it in a cool, dry area away from sunlight.

5 Sugar

Sugar, much like salt, will likely be a popular bartering item and it makes sense why. Having sugar on hand will go along way to provide our family with some home comforts when times are uncertain and hard. Like honey, sugar can crystallize, but it simply does not support any sort of bacterial growth, so no matter what it will be good. To Properly Store Sugar: To prevent crystallization, store in an airtight container, but no matter what store it in a cool dry place.

6. Popcorn

Popcorn or dried corn can stay safe indefinitely, that is why it was such an important resource to the indigenous people of this country… it could be used fresh, then dried to be used throughout the winter. Dried corn can be ground and used as cornmeal or in any recipe that calls for fresh corn too. To Properly Store Popcorn: Once dried, keep it in a cool, dry place. Store in an airtight container or bag to keep out pests and keep away from light and heat.

Oxygen Absorbers Help Keep Food Fresh

Oxygen Absorbers Help Keep Food Fresh

7. Cornstarch

Cornstarch is a great tool in cooking, especially if you are trying to stretch your food supply with gravies and sauces. You don’t need much, and it doesn’t take much to store either, so it’s really no wonder so many preppers keep this on hand. To Properly Store Cornstarch: Keep in a dark, cool and dry place. Pack tightly to minimize air and contaminants getting in.

8. Vinegar

White vinegar last indefinitely on the shelf, and having it on hand is a must for the smart prepper. It is good for cooking and canning, but it is also a powerful natural cleaning agent and will be no doubt a popular barter item as well. To Properly Store Vinegar: Keep in a bottle with a tight lid or cap, and store in a dark, dry place.

9. Pasta

Even packaged the way it comes from the store, pasta will keep a few years. It is a great item to store, and a crowd pleaser and comfort food especially in survival situations. To Properly Store Pasta: You can buy pasta that is packaged for the long term, or you can store them in mylar bags with oxygen absorbers. Store in a bucket, or in another cool, dry place.

10. Pinto Beans

Beans are so cheap, easy to store and pack serious nutritional value that they are a no-brainer for any prepper to consider in their stockpile. Dried pinto beans can last for many years. To Properly Store Pinto Beans: For the longest shelf life store them in mylar bags with oxygen absorbers. While they won’t go bad, they may get drier and hard over time. Even if they do get dry you can still grind them up and use them in most of your cooking, they will still be edible and nutritious.

Food Bricks are Great for Long Term Storage - Easy to Stack and Open

Food Bricks are Great for Long Term Storage – Easy to Stack and Open

11. Dried Peas

Dried split peas have an indefinite shelf life, and can be used in soups, stews or just as good ole peas themselves. To Properly Store Dried Peas: Much like beans and other legumes, the best method is to pack them in a mylar bag with oxygen absorbers, once packed they will last for many years. You can also stock up and buy a bucket, which is already packaged to last up to 30 years.

12. Baking Soda

Baking soda has a variety of uses, for cleaning, in baking and for medicinal purposes. If stored properly, it will last for years, though it can lose potency over time. To Properly Store Baking Soda: Keep in an airtight container and store in a cool dry place. Remember that baking soda absorbs odors, so you will want to keep it airtight and away from any of your other storage items. To test if your baking soda has lost its potency, add a little vinegar to the a small amount of the baking soda… if it bubbles, it’s still good.

 

Food grade buckets, mylar bags should be used whenever possible, and if oxygen is an enemy, o2 absorbers. I also like to upgrade my buckets with gamma lids, that allow you to screw the lids on and off easily so you can access foods in your stockpile without fumbling around with difficult bucket lids. They stack nicely too. Food Bricks are also great for stacking and accessing your foods, so you might consider them too.

The post Long Shelf Life Foods – 12 Staples of Long Term Food Storage appeared first on USPreppers.

Holding the Line

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There is a line.  It is seemingly invisible, yet it is as real as today.  Throughout history the line has shifted.  Sometimes the line has seen dramatic changes, like it did in WWII when Jews were perceived as being less than equal human beings.    A more recent and dramatic change in the line would be the attacks of 9/11.  No matter the shifting of the line, it has a tendency to return.  But, the line never fully returns to its original position.  It gradually shifts, then shifts some more.

Holding the line in hand, as if it were a rope, are two teams of people.  One team makes an attempt to hold on to the truth and retain its value.  The other team is facing them and attempting to pull the rope toward a modification of the truth and out of the hands of their enemy.

It is a tug of war like no other.

Underneath the scenario is an irony.  Those trying to hold the line are filled with peace.  They have hearts full of love.  Their eyes are open to the God of the Universe, the truth of his gospel message, and have received the love of God’s only son.  They see themselves as the sinners they truly are.  Though they have peace.  The irony is that they have no contentment in this world.  Those retaining the truth know full well that this world is just a temporary home.

The antithesis of those holding the truth are those that want to distort it.  They twist the truth with seemingly subtle changes.  They deceive themselves, and in turn, deceive those around them.  The distortion of the truth keeps them vibrantly pulling the line.  With every deceit, they seem to become more powerful.  Yet, in irony is that they have no hope for the hereafter.  They are lost in their guilt.

Wherever people go, there is the line of truth.  It seems more rare all the time that people want to identify with it, but yet, there are some that do and will.  In fact, many have paid for keeping the line with their lives.  Some are beheaded.  Some are starved.  Some are hung.  Some are crucified.

But, some that would hold the line have let go of the rope.  They have seen the possibility of persecution and have deemed that holding the line is not worth death.  Yet others when seeing persecution have held on even tighter.

Where are you?  Are you a bystander?  Are you holding the line?  The better question is… am I?

Free Fire Friday (Gun Talk) 19 June 2015

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Host Johnny Kempen broadcasts live from the wilds of Alaska about all things gun related. Call in using +1 (213) 943-3444 when the show is live every Friday at 6pm Pacific/ 9pm Eastern to ask questions and participate in the show. Call in and participate!

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Bug Out Buggy Part 2. Vehicle Survival Kit

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2005-2007_Jeep_Liberty_--_08-16-2010In Part 1 we discussed various aspects of selecting an emergency evacuation vehicle (Bug Out Buggy). Once you have selected a vehicle that will evacuate you and your family if you decide to bug out,, there are some additional considerations you need to address.

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Filed under: Azweaponcraftprepper, Survival and Prepping Tagged: Beggining preppers, Bug out vehicle emergency kit, Doomsday prepping, New preppers, Survival and Prepping, Vehicle emergency kit

Preparing for Recession

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Financial crash concept on whiteWhat would do if you had a strong impression that another recession was coming soon? What kinds of actions and changes would you take to weather the coming storm? The steps that I list below aren’t a complete list by any means, and I don’t expect that anyone would be able to accomplish them all, but if any of them sparks something in you to do something that you’re not already doing to become better prepared for a sudden and significant economic downturn, I will have fulfilled the purpose of this blog.

The signs of a coming new recession are all around us:

  • There has never been a sufficient recovery from the Great Recession that started in the autumn of 2008 with the collapse of the housing market. A huge number of people have been unemployed or severely under-employed since that time. They haven’t experienced any recovery or reprieve, just a severe downslide to the brink of poverty and a radical adjustment to what for them has become “the new normal.”
  • Having tens of millions of new people become dependent on the government for food stamps, medical care, and other necessities of life has been a boat anchor for the economy. In a real recovery they would find decent jobs, they would produce something, make their own money, spend their own money, and save some of their own money. All of these things would make life better for everyone. Instead, it is a growing problem that will continue to apply downward pressure on the economy.
  • Big companies have begun laying people off again. Sandy and I run a business-to-business company. Our client businesses have stopped spending money, are laying off employees, and are offering early retirement deals to help save money in the future. All of these are signs of economic contraction.
  • The stock market has been climbing to record highs, but it’s all smoke and mirrors. The rise isn’t caused by underlying economic strength, but because of years of “economic easing,” the federal policy of printing billions of dollars of new money out of thin air. It creates the illusion of wealth without having any real foundation for it.

I could go on, but if you’re reading this article, you probably don’t need to be convinced. You just want to know what to do to help you prepare for it.

  • Stop the bleeding! Are you spending money as if all is well and everything will go on as it always has? Stop it. Take an honest look at every aspect of your life and look for places where you are spending money that you may soon wish you still had. Sandy and I love to travel, but because of the recessionary clouds on the horizon, we’re not going anywhere for a while. Our DirecTV bill is $100 per month. I’m looking into pulling the plug on it and going with all Internet-based streaming TV. Eating out can be another huge drain on a household budget. You can eat like royalty at home for a week for the price of one or two meals out at a marginal restaurant. Make sacrifices. Stop the bleeding.
  • Reduce your debt. Debt is the obligation for payment of money that you spent sometime in the past. Debt is just like the government’s economic easing policy — you generate cash out of thin air to buy things you can’t afford today and hope that you can find a way to pay for them tomorrow. When a recession hits and you aren’t making as much money as you used to (or no money at all), you don’t want to have to pay for purchases you made a long time ago. You’ll need everything that’s coming in to go toward current expenses. Reduce or eliminate your debt now so that you won’t be trying to pay for past expenses at a time of increased current need.
  • Spend wisely. Is there anything that you could buy now that would be a good investment against hard times to come? Is there anything that you could buy now that would either help reduce your expenses or increase your income in the future? I’m thinking about things like:
  • Sell some of your stuff. Do it now. We all have stuff that we don’t really use or need, but for some bizarre reason we hang on to. Sell it now, while you can find a buyer who has the money to pay you what’s it’s worth. The other option is waiting until a major recession hits, needing to sell it to generate cash, and not being able to find anyone who can afford to buy it.
  • Save wisely. It’s tempting to spend all of your money now to buy things that you expect to need in the future. Prices continue to inch upward on almost everything, while incomes remain flat or actually decrease. Some staples that we stocked up on a couple of years ago are selling for 25% more now. That’s a pretty good investment return. Some people believe that our money won’t be worth anything in the not-to-distant future, so they say you need to spend it now to get anything at all from it. I don’t know enough about that stuff to have an opinion on it, but I do know that having a cash reserve has always been a good idea in the past and looks like it’s still a wise choice for the foreseeable future. Saving wisely can be a tricky one. Save as much as you can afford to now so that you are able to meet future expenses, emergencies, or can pounce on a great deal if the opportunity presents itself, but don’t save so much that you can’t spend wisely and reduce your debt now.
  • Increase your income. Earning more money will help you accomplish all of the bullet points in this article. There’s a lot of talk these days about creating multiple revenue streams, which is just another way to say adding an additional source of income to your primary job. You’ve heard the old saying that “it takes money to make money.” Yes, but to meet the goals of the challenge of preparing for the sudden onset of a significant recession, you want to find something that you can do to earn extra money that won’t cost you an arm and a leg to set up. What can you do to earn a buck on the side without a lot of start-up costs?
    • Build things
    • Repair things
    • Cook / bake / cater food
    • Sewing and alterations
    • Create and sell crafts or works of art
    • Sell new or used products on Amazon (yes, you can do that), eBay, or Etsy
    • Pet-sitting or house-sitting
    • Do yardwork
  • Trust God. I really wanted to lead with this point, but I also didn’t want anyone to tune out before I got to it. You won’t find “God helps those who help themselves” quoted in the Bible anywhere, but I believe that God expects us to do our part, and He wants us to trust Him to do what we can’t. Some people refuse to prep because of their faith in God. I’m just the opposite — I prep because of my faith in God. I take action because I trust in Him.

Even since I sat down to write this I’ve received word of one of our client companies cutting their budget to the core and requiring all employees to take a week off without pay this summer. The storm clouds of recession (or worse) are everywhere. It’s time to get busy and it’s time to trust God.

The post Preparing for Recession appeared first on The Approaching Day Prepper.

From Past to Present

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I am grateful that my husband Mike has showed me stuff that I didn’t know and encouraged me to love the great outdoors! It was not always that way. I remembered back when we used to live up on the mountain, we had a small piece of land behind our house and I was afraid to go in the woods by myself. I just told him that later!

We didn’t have this kind of setup in the Philippines. We have a jungle over there and I have never been to it either! I grew up in the city of Manila. Yes, a city girl! I remember when I was little, my mother would bring me and my siblings to grandma’s place for the summer. I liked it there although I felt that I was stuck there for two months! :)

What I did like about that place is… grandma Matilde had plenty of tropical fruits in her backyard. That’s all the forest was for me! But wait! I was a little adventurous girl! It does not stop me from going out and explore some areas by the river and hunt for more fruits to eat. I like to climb trees, harvest and eat up the fruits!

PRESENT

So, now I’m in Canada married to a woodsman and I’m glad that I can still cultivate that curiosity of a little girl. The only thing missing is that there are no tropical fruits to harvest but something else.

They have berries and all kinds of edible plants that I had never tried before; like for example the fiddleheads. Never thought in my life that we could eat “ferns!” I do now! :)  Oh, and I love wild garlics!wild edible - fiddleheadswild edible - fiddleheads

There are still so many things to try and I am still learning some more.

Last year I had some wild mushrooms (chanterelles) brought to me by Mike & Billy and it was actually pretty good. I would like to pick some myself now that I know exactly where they are and how to identify them.

wild mushrooms chanterelles

By the way please be careful and make sure that you know enough information concerning the edible plants that you are trying. Mike showed me which good fiddlehead to pick and I always cook them, same with the mushroom. Mike has always told me that if you are sure at 99% that it’s edible don’t touch it, it’s not enough. You have to be sure 100%!

Let me share with you something that I used to do with my grandma. She had pigs back then; grandma would bring me for a walk and we would pick wild plants (weeds). We would bring that home and cook it in a tin pot on an open fire with all our leftover meals mixed with some grains and then let it cool off and feed it to the pigs.

A few memories… eating young bamboo shoots; digging some sweet potatoes; and by the way the leaves are edible and we call them “talbos,” and we still eat them in the Philippines today and many other type of leaves like “kangkong, saluyot, malunggay,” etc.

If you click on each one of these names it will show you what it looks like. I must say that I miss eating them!

I was amazed how grandma knew her wild plants and what was edible and what was not. Now I could tell you many more stories but I will save it for another time.

I was curious and wanted to learn even as a little girl and I’m glad that I payed attention! I was actually blessed with two wonderful grandmothers who knew how to cook with what is available to them. I only realize it now how I wish that I had asked them more questions!

 

 

5 Home Remedies For Fleas & A Flea Trap That Really Work!

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Whilst fleas are a major concern for most pet owners, some people may consider fleas to be nothing more than a minor ailment for your pet; however if left unchecked fleas can wreak havoc on pets and humans alike. Fleas in your home and on your pets need to…

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OUR PERSONAL THREAT MATRIX

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When the topic of preparedness is the focus of the conversation, the inevitable question from everyone we talk to is “What are you afraid of?” or “What worries you most?”  Not always in an attacking manner.  Some folks are genuinely interested.  Our answer is always much the same.  We do not live in fear of anything because we have a plan supported by skill sets, knowledge and personal capital.  That doesn’t make us some house of bad asses, it just means that we have cultivated a confidence over the years based on experience that we will face whatever comes head on and we have every confidence that we will bear it and beat it.  With that said, there are things in the background that act as motivators for us to take steps to prepare that go beyond all of the common sense reasons (severe weather, unexpected job loss, an injury that puts you on the shelf for a while, etc) we believe it is necessary to embrace a lifestyle of preparedness.  In no particular order, these are the things my wife and I view as “big bad” reasons to practice preparedness as a family:

 

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Pandemic – It has happened before and it will happen again.  Don’t take it from me, just check this outHere’s another.  For me, this was probably the first “bigger picture” threat that really grabbed my attention.

IMAG1418Resource depletion (societal strains and impacts) – Whether it’s the rampant loss of quality top soils, access to clean water, oil (the master resource) or any of the others, the resources that are vital to the stability and continuation of our civilization are becoming increasingly more difficult to procure which is straining our society and it’s people and there is a constant creeping tension surrounding this fact.  This stark reality surrounds us and you don’t have to look very hard to see cracks in the foundation of our republic already appearing.

EMP (Electromagnetic pulse) or CME (Coronal Mass Ejection) -The threat of electromagnetic pulse (EMP) is not a new one, but it has become clear that deploying an EMP weapon over the continental United States would rank among the primary goals of any of those engaging in state sponsored terrorism due to the projected devastating impacts of such an attack.  A Coronal Mass Ejection (CME) could also spell disaster for our aging power grid here in the US.  Like a pandemic, it’s happened before and our cosmic address places us in the shooting gallery so it’s no surprise that we have had a few near misses and close calls. We can all sleep soundly knowing that there is a 12% chance that we will find ourselves directly in the firing line of a massive solar flare and resulting coronal mass ejection by 2020.

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So there you have it.  Of course, beyond the basic seasonal weather events, I’m curious what motivates you and your family to prepare.  Please tell us about it in the comment section below.  Also, keep up with everything Practical Tactical by subscribing to our mailing list and be sure to LIKE, SHARE and FOLLOW us across all of our social media platforms.

First Aid for Preppers – Part 4: Stings, Bites & Stomach Bugs

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First Aid For Preppers: Stings, Bites & Stomach BugsSo a disaster has struck setting bug-out plans into motion. There’s no place to stay, hotels are full, extended family and friends have been turned out of their homes leaving everyone on their own to seek out shelter. Left out to the whims of the environment, the humans unfortunately, are on the receiving end of insect bites and stings resulting from the occasional misunderstandings. Other times, we do nothing but sip some unfiltered water or take a few bites of food left out just a little too long.
So what to do when the itching, pain, allergic reactions begin? Or how about when the stomach starts churning sending things up and out every which way? Fortunately, there are things you can do, first aid to alleviate the pains and provide at least a modicum of comfort to the discomforted.

Insect Stings & Bites

ITEMS NEEDED:

Tweezers should be part of any first aid kit and bug out bag

Tweezers should be part of any first aid kit and bug out bag

Tweezers
disinfecting or cleaning solution (alcohol swabs, soap & water or hand sanitizers)
cold pack (or cloth to douse in cool water)
ibuprofen
anti-itch cream
antihistamine
prescription epinephrine injector (EpiPen)

Bees, Wasps & Hornets

Bees infrequently sting (compared to wasps or hornets) and do usually so when overtly bothered or when swarming. A sting is death to bee, so they don’t take stinging lightly. Wasps and hornets are more aggressive and can sting at the drop of a hat. And when they do, they do so repeatedly.

To minimize irritating the latter, stay alert and avoid their nests. Wasps and hornets will build nests under roof overhangs, sheds, garages and on tree limbs. Hornets will also nest underground, in shrubbery and hollow trees. Both are attracted to meats, fruits and sugary foods and drinks which may bring them in contact with people.

What to do if stung:

1) If stung by a bee, the stinger will probably remain stuck in the skin. Remove immediately with fingernails or tweezers. Hornets and wasps will not leave a stinger behind but will inject a protein venom.
2) Use a cold pack to reduce swelling and pain and swelling
3) Administer an oral antihistamine will help alleviate minor allergic reactions.

If the person stung is one of those who are severely allergic to stings (characterized by difficulty breathing, tightness of the chest, swelling of the throat, dizziness) give them a dose of epinephrine delivered most often with an EpiPen auto-injector. A prescription is required for this device.
Seek out medical attention ASAP, as the reactions could return when epinephrine wears off.
EpiPens typically come in twos, so keep a second injector handy and give an antihistamine every 4 to 6 hours.

Ticks and Fleas

If Ticks are Prevalent in our Area you may consider the TickEase Tick Remover For your Bug Out Bag

If Ticks are Prevalent in our Area you may consider the TickEase Tick Remover For your Bug Out Bag

Flea and tick bites can irritate the skin but they can also transmit disease. Typically, these bites will not amount to much beyond slight irritation and redness around the immediate area. Having said that, familiarizing yourself with any illnesses they spread that occur around general region you’re in is worth doing (Lyme disease throughout the Northeastern US and flea transmitted plague in the American Southwest, for example). Avoiding rodent borrows and checking yourself at least twice a day for ticks will go a long way to preventing any problems. If you are bitten:

1) Wash the area around the bite with water and soap or even hand sanitizer
2) If a tick is found attached, grab the tick with a pair of tweezers at skin level and pull straight out, gently.
3)Should a rash develop contact a doctor.

Venomous Spiders

Within in the US there are not many highly poisonous spiders. Most bites are similar to other insect bites, irritating and possibly tender for a few hours. The black widow and brown recluse, however, are two worth watching out for. Reactions to bites from either of these can vary widely, depending on the person and the amount of venom delivered, ranging from mild to severe.

If someone has a more serious reaction than some pain around the site from a black widow bite such as; muscle cramps, intense pain, abdominal and back pain, nausea, vomiting and/or dizziness; seek out medical attention ASAP. Typically, about 90 percent of brown recluse bites will show nothing more than a red spot that heals quickly. But for an unlucky 10%, a bite can develop into an open wound with significant tissue damage that takes 8 weeks to recover.

Initial first aid for both bites involves:

1)Cleaning around the bite area and applying cold to the site
2) Administer an antihistamine to help with itching, while ibuprofen will help with pain.
3) For those exhibiting acute reactions seek out medical attention ASAP and bring the spider with you, if you’re able.

Bites from these spiders are rarely life-threatening.

Animal Bites

Venomous Snakes

Snake BIte Kits are Handy and contain antiseptic wipes and suction cups for withdrawing venom

Snake Bite Kits are Handy and contain antiseptic wipes and suction cups for withdrawing venom

From copperheads to cottonmouths to rattlesnakes, venomous snakes range across the US. Most bites occur when people wander, unwittingly, too close. At least rattlesnakes will give a bit of a warning before striking and you will know when you’re bitten. Depending on the species the symptoms include;

  • Redness and swelling around the area of the bite which will likely spread
  • Severe pain at the site
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Labored breathing (in extreme cases, breathing may stop altogether)
  • Disturbed vision
  • Increased salivation and sweating
  • Numbness or tingling around face and/or limbs

A snake bite will require medical attention and the faster a victim can reach a hospital the better. Try to remember the type of snake it was or at the very least its coloration and shape to help doctors identify the species.

In the intervening time provide first aid:

1) Keep the victim still and calm. A slower heart rate will slow the circulation of the venom.
2) Remove or loosen any restrictive clothing or jewelry before swelling cuts off circulation.
3) Keep the bite area and/or limb below the level of the heart. Do not elevate as you would with other types of wounds.
4) Wash the site with soap and water
5) Cover the wound with a dry, loose dressing

According to the CDC do not do any of the following:

  • Do not pick up the snake or try to trap it.
  • Do not wait for symptoms to appear if bitten, seek immediate medical attention.
  • Do not apply a tourniquet.
  • Do not slash the wound with a knife.
  • Do not suck out the venom.
  • Do not apply ice or immerse the wound in water.
  • Do not drink alcohol as a painkiller.
  • Do not drink caffeinated beverages.

Mammals

Bites from mammals can range from a barely-breaks-the-surface, playful bite from your cat to a full blown gash from an animal attacking or trying to defend itself. Apply first aid to the latter as you would with any other, paying specific attention to cleaning out the wound, itself.

1) Apply pressure to stop the bleeding.
2) Thoroughly wash and clean the wound immediately with soap and water. This is very important as animal bites are prone to infection.
3) Rinse clean and generously apply antibacterial ointment before covering with sterile dressings. Do NOT try to suture the wound closed as this could foster infection.
4) Seek medical attention ASAP for any wound worse than a superficial scratch given the risk of infection.

Take special note of the animal. If it is/was acting noticeably strange, staggering, circling, appeared disoriented or was convulsing tell medical personnel as it may be an indication of rabies. Treatments are very effective if started promptly.

Gastrointestinal Illness

Gastrointestinal (GI) illnesses are caused by a host of bacteria, viruses and parasites. They all cause distress along the gastrointestinal tract, that is the stomach on down (hence the name). This distress tends to cause either diarrhea, nausea or vomiting and for the unlucky person, all of the above. These illnesses spread easily, infecting a lot of people quickly. Given the general range of symptoms and mode of transmission, there are universal steps to follow to curtail their spread and help provide comfort to those dealing with the symptoms.

Stopping Transmission

Hand washing is perhaps the best defense against these stomach bugs. Wash with hot water and soap scrubbing for at least 30 seconds, working fingertips and under nails.
Use latex-type gloves when caring for ill people and handling any of their waste.
Clean countertops and other surfaces with bleach-water solution or other commercial bleach-based cleaners.
Spread doesn’t always stop when symptoms do. A person recovering from norovirus, for instance, will continue shedding the virus for up to 2 weeks after symptoms have dissipated.

Treating for Diarrhea and Vomiting

1) Give as much fluid as the patient will tolerate to prevent dehydration.
2) Avoid caffeinated beverages.
3) Offer fluids with electrolytes (Gatorade, for example).
4) Try giving the patient easily digestible foods like crackers, oatmeal, rice, toast. Avoid fatty foods and dairy products.
5) If vomiting worsens, blood shows up in stool or if a fever starts, find a doctor.

If you and your family have been forced to bug-out, camping in the wilderness and have to drink natural sources of water, you can prevent contracting this type of illness by filtering water and boiling it before drinking. Taking those two steps will kill off virtually any organism that could cause a problem.

 

If you missed the previous article in this series, check out First Aid Part 1: Blisters, Burns & Nasty Wounds, First Aid Part 2: Sprains & Broken Bones & First Aid Part 3: Shock, Heatstroke & Hypothermia and get all the information on how to be prepared to administer successful first aid in any situation.

The post First Aid for Preppers – Part 4: Stings, Bites & Stomach Bugs appeared first on USPreppers.

Emergency Birth Kit for Roadtrips

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Have you ever researched how to deliver a baby in an emergency situation? My brother and his pregnant wife, who is eight months along, are making a 14 hour trip through the desert wasteland know as Nevada, to come visit me.  I also have a… Read More

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Adapt or die: Why you need more skills and less stuff

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Spending all your time on money on supplies and gear could be a deadly mistake. Learn survival and prepping skills instead – here’s why…

You’re reading Adapt or die: Why you need more skills and less stuff, originally posted at Graywolf Survival – Emergency preparedness from a combat veteran by Graywolf.

Tin Hat Ranch is Headed to Africa!

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      Tin Hat Ranch is Headed to Africa! Yes, you read that correctly. The Tin Hat Ranch is heading to Africa, Liberia to be more accurate.  If you’ve been around the Ranch a while you might remember that Spot (or “the other Mike” at the Tin Hat Ranch) runs a nonprofit that is working …

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Free Webinar: Sun Cooking Essentials

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Two years ago, my husband snapped this picture with his smart phone… 

Free Webinar: Sun Cooking Essentials

Now, I know it’s not the most visually appealing photo of a roast chicken you’ve seen but it’s a picture worth saving because it’s a picture of the first thing we ever cooked in our Sun Oven. 

The photo may leave something to be desired but the chicken did not. It was down right delicious! We’ve made quite a few of them since that photo was taken.

Sun Ovens are really cool. We love ours, however I’m embarrassed to say we haven’t made anything else in it…only the roast chicken. I want to use it more but I’m a little intimated. I definitely could use some help getting things cookin’. 😉

I thought you might enjoy learning more about how to harness the power of the sun to cook too, so I invited Paul Munsen of Sun Ovens International to teach an interactive online seminar. Paul has devoted his life to sharing fundamental Sun Oven cooking techniques with people all over the world. He’s definitely the right guy to teach us. 

Join us for the FREE Sun Cooking Essentials Webinar!

Sun Cooking Essentials on HomeReadyHome.comThe Sun Ovens Cooking Essentials Webinar will show you the fundamental sun cooking and baking techniques to help you warm up to the idea of cooking with the sun to save money now and be better prepared for emergencies. Whether you have a Sun Oven and want to learn more or you know nothing about solar cooking you will find this seminar beneficial.

You’ll Learn:

  • How to harness the power of the sun to cook and dehydrate food, purify water, and be better prepared for emergencies
  • How a Sun Oven can help you never worry about burning dinner again
  • How to use a Sun Oven to naturally dehydrate fruits and vegetables
  • How to reduce your utility bills while learning how to cook during hard times when normal fuel sources will be in short supply.

Mark Your Calendar!

Thursday June 25, 2015

7 p.m. CST, (8 p.m. EST / 6 p.m. MST / 5 p.m. PST)

Space is limited so register now and save your spot. 

Register Here. 

What questions do you have about solar cooking?

If you have a question for Paul, please leave it in the comments below and I’ll make sure he answers it in the webinar.

Looking forward to learning with you!

signature2 

This article may contain affiliate links. For more information, read the Disclaimers & Disclosures here. Thank you for your support!

The post Free Webinar: Sun Cooking Essentials appeared first on Earth and Honey.

Why Leaves May be the Most Useful Survival Item Ever

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Survival Uses for LeavesThe old saying goes, money doesn’t grow on trees, but who needs money when something even more valuable grows on them? Leaves.

Okay, so maybe they aren’t going to accept leaves as legal tender, but if SHTF, there may be more uses for the stuff that grows right on trees than the printed stuff in your pocket. That is why you should educate yourself on the many uses of the absolutely indispensable leaf.

In a survival situation It is said you can live 3 hours without shelter, 3 days without water, and 3 weeks without food. With the right leaves at your disposal, you won’t have to do without any of these things. Let’s explore how leaves can be used to provide and collect these important resources to keep you fed, hydrated and safe in an outdoor survival situation.

Shelter

If you don’t have an emergency shelter at your disposal, you will find there are still ways to keep you and your family covered and protected. Leaves make excellent roof shingles or thatching when woven together. No matter what the size and weight of the leaves you have at your disposal are, you can utilize them to create a rudimentary shelter from the sun or the dangerous elements. Longer leaves can even be stripped to make rope, which can be used to tie larger leaves together to make a stronger shelter.

Leaves are also great if we are in a more volatile survival situation. Especially in the autumn, fallen leaves makes excellent camouflage, that can easily hide you or members of your family until the threat is gone.

Water

All Water Collected Should be Filtered before Drinking - A LifeStraw is perfect for filtering water collected from leaves

All Water Collected Should be Filtered before Drinking – A LifeStraw is perfect for filtering water collected from leaves

First, it should be said all water collected from plants should be filtered before you drink it.

Without any work at all, some leaves are just natural water collectors. Plants that have bowl shaped, or upward turned leaves not only collect water, but also dew from more humid climates. If you are on the go in a wilderness survival situation, remembering to look for these plants could give you a major leg up in your struggle to survive.

There are a few other techniques as well that have been tried and true. If you are near a grass field, plan to wake up early before dawn. When the dew is on the morning grass, there is an interesting way to collect this resource for consumption that has been used by indigenous people for centuries.. By tying tufts of fine grass around your ankles and trudging through a dew filled field in early morning you can collect enough of this precious resource to keep you going. Once the dew is collected, wring out the grass and filter your water.

If you are stationary, and have decided to hunker down in one place you can also create condensation with plant leaves too. Wrap non toxic, plant leaves with a clear plastic bag. As the temperature heats up the plants will release condensation inside the bag, providing precious water in a true emergency. If you need to employ this method, you will want to have more than one bag in use at a time, as just one won’t produce quite enough water.

While it is not the most common in the US, green bamboo thickets are an excellent source of fresh water. If you do happen to find bamboo stalks, you can obtain the clear and odorless water by bending the stalk, tying it down and then cut the top off. The water will then drip freely from the plant during the evening. Even old and already cracked bamboo may hold some water too.

Food

There are many edible leaves and plants and they are important to know. Here are some incredible, edible plants you can find in the wild or in your own neighborhoods that you will want to know — having this knowledge could save your life in a survival situation.

Dandelion Leaves are edible, the younger leaves are less bitter

Dandelion Leaves are edible, the younger leaves are less bitter

Dandelions

It’s not just the leaves that are edible on a dandelion… the whole plant provides nutrition. The leaves are best when they are young, as they tend to get bitter when they are more mature. If you do need to eat the mature leaves you can boil them first to cut the bitter taste.

Chickweed leaves, as well as the flowers are edible

Chickweed leaves, as well as the flowers are edible

Seaweed

For some, the access to seaweed may be easier than others, but if you do find yourself in a place where seaweed is present, don’t miss the opportunity to reap its nutritional benefits. After you pull green seaweed from the water you should rinse it with fresh water and let it dry in the sun. It can be eaten raw or but many people will boil it and include it in a soup.

Chickweed

Chickweed leaves are pretty hefty and they can be eaten raw or boiled. They’re a great resource if the grow in your area (usually found in temperate and arctic zones) they are high in vitamins and minerals and provide powerful energy for someone in a survival situation.

Clover

Clovers are plentiful and their leaves have a great flavor in salads. While they are good raw, some people have trouble digesting them which is why many people use them to make teas and juices, in fact clover tea is already popular for its nutritional value. In a survival situation, whether the clover is raw or not, you will benefit from the nutritional value of this common and useful plant.

The Mallow Plant has Tender, edible leaves

The Mallow Plant has Tender, edible leaves

Mallow

Mallow is actually a quite taste leaf, soft in texture and great in salads. Raw is generally the way mallow leaves are eaten, but you can also cook them slightly as you would spinach. The smaller leaves may be slightly too tender, so stick to the larger leaves.

 

Plantain

Plantain has the same name as the banana-like plant that grows in tropical regions, but it is really quite different. It is found all over the

Plantain Leaves -- edible and high in vitamin C

Plantain Leaves — edible and high in vitamin C

world, usually in wet marshy areas, but also in alpine terrain. Like the dandelion, the leaves will get more bitter tasting as they mature. Plantain is very high in vitamin A and calcium with even a little bit of vitamin C.

 

Not only are there several edible weeds that already likely grow in abundance right in your neighborhood, they can also be used as cookware and dining wear in survival cooking situations. Large, wet leaves make excellent cooking packets (the Mallow leaf is a good example of one you could use this way) and bigger, flat leaves can be used to serve your food too.

Other Uses

The long list of uses for leaves in a survival situation includes, but is by no means limited to:

  • Toilet Paper
  • Natural Bandages
  • Ropes
  • Sleeping Mats
  • Pillows and Bedding
  • Insulation
  • Fire Tinder
Consider Educating Yourself in other Edible Plants with This Excellent Guide

Consider Educating Yourself in other Edible Plants with This Excellent Guide

There are so many more uses for leaves, it’s hard to imagine why they are often a forgotten part of the plant. With medicinal qualities present in so many as well, there are even more ways they can help you survive that we haven’t even begun to cover here.

While most prepared families already have planned for the limited resources of shelter, water and food by purchasing tents and emergency shelters, creating stockpiles of long term food storage and storing water and water filtration systems. However, no matter how prepared we think we are, it is still possible to find yourself trapped out in the wilderness at the mercy of the elements. In those cases arming yourself with knowledge is the best step a prepper can take.

Learning how leaves, and other natural flowers and plants, can be used to aid our survival will only make you and your family that much safe when a true disaster arises.

The post Why Leaves May be the Most Useful Survival Item Ever appeared first on USPreppers.

Full Time

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I didn’t want it to happen, but I knew it would. We are now living in the house full time even though it is not done.

This weekend we had a big push to get it livable with A/C in the whole house. We got the insulation done in the Kitchen/Living area, put in the big A/C and even boxed in the drop down in the center with cedar. The walls, floors, ceiling, cabinets, stove and everything else that goes in a kitchen/living room still needs to be done.
I joked with Candy by saying, “We started off on plywood floors and now look at us 25 years later, right back on them.”
Everything else is done in the house and I knew that once we started spending most of our time there it would not be long before we just moved in. It got really old going back and forth from the house to the camper and having some things over there and some stuff over here. Plus running the electricity in both started to get out of hand.  All we were using the camper for was to cook and do dishes anyway. So to get completely out of it and just shut the thing off is a good thing.
The biggest problem is now I have to work around more stuff.

My dad gave me an old ice box that is just the size we need. It holds everything we had in the two refrigerators we were running in the camper plus some. I also took an old outdoor kitchen project I made a couple of years ago and modified it to fit our needs now.

I set it up right outside the front door on the porch so it’s easy to get to. I then installed this sink and hooked it up to the garden hose. We have hot water, but just what is in the hose. It’s enough to do the dished with and if we need more then we just bucket it in from the bathroom. For the drains we use five gallon buckets and empty them when they get full. Hey, it works and it’s functional. Plus, food always tastes better when cooked outside.
Once the kitchen is done then this will go away and the sink and stove will be used in my real outdoor kitchen on the deck beside the house.

But then disaster struck. Sunday afternoon we had a large portion of the family over for hamburgers and to show off the house. It had been raining and I was showing the upstairs area. On my way back down I fell. The end result is I broke a bone in my lower back. I have pretty much been in bed ever since. The doctor said it is broke in an area they cannot brace or get to so there is nothing they can do except manage my pain. It will be four to six weeks before I can lift anything, squat or walk up stairs. On top of all that, last night Candy was coming down the ladder from sewing all day and somehow managed to almost destroy her knee. Torn ligaments, messed up knee cap and the whole works. She is in a full leg brace and on crutches now.
What a mess, she can’t take care of me and I can’t take care of her, but we are managing, just a little slower than usual.
I didn’t have any plans this weekend anyway, but what a way to spend Father’s day. I would have much rather been playing golf.
Jessie is coming in this weekend to help take care of old mom and dad. I told her she better get used to it. LOL
Okay, pain meds are kicking in, I need to get off here before I say more stupid stuff.

See ya down the road.
Jerry

Surviving A Haboob (Sand Storm)

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Haboob2Unless you have experienced a serious dust storm such as those which occur in desert areas around the world, you have no idea how awesome, and actually dangerous they can be. ‘Haboob” is the Arabic word for these storms, and has been adopted by those living in the Southwest to describe them also. Getting caught in one can be no fun, but there are certain things you need to do to protect yourself if you are.

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Filed under: Azweaponcraftprepper, Survival and Prepping Tagged: Beggining preppers, Doomsday prepping, Haboob, New preppers, Survival and Prepping, Surviving a dust storm

One Lone Peach

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So yesterday while looking for one of the cats Michelle noticed a water sound coming from under the house. As you know, you shouldn’t hear water running under your house so that could be nothing but bad news. When I took Phil out there after he got home, we with our flashlights checked it out and found one of the lines to the hot water leaking. That could very well be the reason our electric bill jumped over $100 to $412 this month. Anyway, when we walked back in we went around the peach tree and I noticed this one perfect peach on it. I’ll admit I have been too busy working to noticed if any of the little peaches the peach tree had this spring had made it through summer. It only had about 7 or 8 to begin with and we had a late frost and I really thought all of them had dropped. Apparently not. 

So I am not a peach expert but I felt it and it seemed ripe and I picked it. It smelled wonderful and was firm but not too firm. We took pictures of it and then I set it on the counter until this morning when I ate it. Yes, it was perfectly ripe and the best peach I have ever eaten. 
I need to do a little reading up on how to trim the tree. I have trimmed it a couple of times in the fall and it still does not seem to produce man flowers each spring. I need to see if I am doing it at the wrong time for this area. 
In other news, not everything is “peachy”. I am no longer working for the Boys and Girls Club. The stress of working for someone who doesn’t like me and was never going to treat me right was just too much. I do still work for Mistletoe State Park and I am still loving it there but now I am looking for a job to fill in during the week. It is no rush though, we will be fine until I find something. 
I am enjoying having some time here again though it is terribly hot this week and the air conditioners really do not keep us cool even inside. We basically do everything in the mornings when it is cooler. 
I am getting in some violin practice again, working on a crochet afghan and thinking about when I will butcher those meat birds as they are now ready (it will not be this week when temps are over 100 F. every day!)
Just so you know, I never did find my Sassy cat. She has been missing since the day before yesterday. I do hope she comes out soon. And Phil has figured out how he can fix the line to the hot water heater which wasn’t as easy as it seems since this is an old doublewide and they no longer make those lines but there is a way to fix them with a special kind of cuppling that will attach the old line to the new line they now have so you don’t have to replace the whole thing.  

Advanced Tactical Hip Bag Vs. Maxpedition Jumbo EDC Bag

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advanced tactical hip bag

Note: This review was contributed by one of our readers. Jeremy from Alaska compares his previous EDC bag from Maxpedition to his newest one, which is made by Rothco for The Bug Out Bag Guide. To view pricing and purchasing options in our store, CLICK HERE.

concealed carry

Introduction

I carry concealed on a very regular basis, but sometimes there are situations where on-body carry is just not practical for me.  So, I take the next available option:  off-body carry in a “man-purse.”

Now, set aside your reservations for this, because I understand most, if not all, the disadvantages to taking this approach.  This review is for those who take this option.

advanced tactical hip bag

About two years ago, I bought a Maxpedition Jumbo EDC, and found it quite adequate to the task for my every day carry needs:  from handgun, holster, and reloads, to first aid kit, multitool, flashlight, cellphone, handheld electronics and accessories, water and a few snacks.

EDC List

Learn how to pick the best EDC flashlight

However, the Fastex clasp over the main lid broke which, paired with a couple of minor annoyances I had with that bag, gave me good opportunity to look for a new bag.  Since Maxpedition’s “tan” is actually a greenish-tan better suited for the Army’s digital sage pattern, I sought something closer to the coyote tan of my other gear.

The Advanced Tactical Hip Bag

Bug Out Bag Guide offered the perfect replacement.  I wound up paying about $15 more than I did for the Maxpedition, but just out of the packaging, it seems to have been well worth it.

advanced tactical hip bag

Overall Layout

Now, both bags follow largely the same layout:  The main bag partitioned into a rear compartment for handgun & holster, and the main compartment itself.

advanced tactical hip bag

Outside the main bag are four smaller external compartments, one being open-ended, cinchable, and able to be further secured by a velcro tab much like you find on some rifle magazine pouches. There are three other zippered ones on the top, front, and the opposite side.

advanced tactical hip bag

advanced tactical hip bag

The main lid extends over the front to secure the main compartment and cover the aforementioned front compartment, which itself features an extra open pocket.  The lid has a zippered pocket, too, and a strip of velcro long enough to accommodate two flag-sized patches, or nametape, etc.

advanced tactical hip bag

Both offer a padded shoulder strap that can quick-release with its Fastex buckle, and is anchored to one end of the main bag that features a small area of MOLLE/PALS webbing for attaching a small gadget pouch (radio, etc).  Both bags also offer breathable cushioning on the bag’s back.

advanced tactical hip bag

But, it’s the details that set the two apart, and all in all, I think the bag offered by BOBG is the better of the two.

The Details

Concealed Handgun Compartment

I carry a full-size HK USP45 (one of the larger service semiautos).  The Maxpedition accommodated it and a Bianchi Black Widow holster just fine, with room to spare for an extra magazine.  BOBG’s offering does it at least as well.  Both also feature velcro backing on one side of the compartment, to help further secure handguns in holsters.

Main Compartment

Both bags feature enough space to fit a military-issue IFAK (enclosed in its case) with just a tad more room to fit in, say, a pair of sunglasses in their case.  The compartment of both have a mesh pocket on one side, and a regular pocket on the other.

Where they differ most significantly is how they keep out dust and moisture, given the gaps left open by the lid.  The Maxpedition does nothing to keep small loose items from spilling out, but the Advanced Tactical Hip Bag (henceforth referred to as “ATHB”) has a liner you can cinch closed to prevent that as well as block dust and moisture from getting in.

advanced tactical hip bag

Neither bag is completely waterproof, but BOBG’s bag does feature a moisture-resistant lining (the sort you find on the lid of old-school ALICE packs) on practically all of its interior surfaces.

The underside of the Maxpedition has a single loop of webbing to hold the main compartment’s strap in place.  The Advanced Tactical Hip Bag has two more to either side.

Exterior Compartments

advanced tactical hip bag

Both are comparable, including the MOLLE webbing on the side compartment.  The Maxpedition is a tad roomier on the side compartments (for example, you can fit three USGI 30-rd M4 mags into the open pocket while the ATHB can fit only two), and offers paracord attached to the zippers (to make them easier to grasp while wearing gloves). It also features a strip of webbing in the front compartment for a flashlight, multitool, pens, etc.

Best Tactical Pen

The Advanced Tactical Hip Bag instead has a zippered mesh pocket and a clip lanyard.  The ATHB also offers another pocket inside the other side compartment (the one with the MOLLE webbing) that can fit a full-size double-stacked pistol magazine.  Furthermore, the ATHB’s top zippered pocket features MOLLE webbing, something the Maxpedition lacks.

advanced tactical hip bag

Strap

Both feature an adjustable strap that runs through a shoulder pad, secured by velcro, and permanently sewn into one end of the bag (behind some MOLLE webbing), and fastened by a quick-release Fastex buckle on the other end of the strap.  The Maxpedition strap is sturdier, and has a plastic D-ring above the MOLLE webbing, while the other end features another section of velcro for another patch.

advanced tactical hip bag

However, the Advanced Tactical Hip Bag has a metal clip (almost like a miniature carabiner), and yet another Fastex-secured small pouch for a knife, multitool, flashlight, cellphone, pistol magazine, and a sleeve for a pen.

advanced tactical hip bag

I wore my Maxpedition on pretty much a daily basis, taking it to work, hiking, etc.  I’ll be happy to submit a review on this bag after a couple months’ worth of use.

UPDATE: After Using The Bag For 2+ Months!

Two months owning the bag, and I still like it very much.  Here’s a follow-up review I had promised.

I discovered a way to free up the main compartment by moving my rip-away IFAK to the outside.  I secure it by sticking it on the loop strip on the external flap and running a carabiner through the top pocket’s center MOLLE loop with the other running through the IFAK’s top handle (see attached photo).  It makes opening the flap (and accessing the front pocket) a little more cumbersome, but it works until I can get something on the order of AR500’s EPIK just to use with this bag.

Also, while the thinner main strap might be something of a compromise, I figured recently that it might be a good thing if you find yourself having to cut it away.

Overall, the bag has survived a few hikes and two months of nearly daily use.  I have thus far been very satisfied with it.

Your Thoughts

Was this review helpful to you? Have you experienced similar challenges with finding the right gear for your needs? Let us know your thoughts in the Comments section below, thanks!

The post Advanced Tactical Hip Bag Vs. Maxpedition Jumbo EDC Bag appeared first on The Bug Out Bag Guide.

10 Uses for SHTF Survival Tampons

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      10 Uses for SHTF Survival Tampons  Do you know what the word tampon actually stands for? Tactical Adventure Medical Preparedness Outdoors Necessity (T.A.M.P.O.N.) All kidding aside, a tampon is an F.D.A. class II medical device. And while it is considered so for its intended purpose, Tampons actually can serve a few medical functions. …

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Flood Survival Tips

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With the recent flooding in Texas, this natural disaster is in the forefront of our minds. It can strike almost any region. Floods often strike after a lot of ongoing rain – that’s no surprise. However, flash floods occur fast and can overtake large interstates with little warning. It may not even be raining where […]

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Prepping Combo-Firearm

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Here is something that has potential to be a good Prepping Firearm. Check it out and let me know your thoughts. I think that the insert should be longer to give the bullet more accuracy. But one gun, that can shoot all of these different calibers…Priceless.

Book Review: Joel Richardson’s “The Islamic Antichrist”

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Without a doubt, there has been an incredible amount of sensationalism that surrounds eschatology (the study of the end times).  Movies, television shows, books, and articles have been a phenomenal outlet for sparking misconception and controversy.  However, in the case of “Islamic Antichrist,” we have, what I believe, is a good book that may have not ended up on your reading list.

Caught up in the misconceptions and controversy, I find myself.  Listening to, watching, and reading sensational works is fun.  However, Joel Richardson’s book was different from what I had been previously reading, watching, and hearing.

How so?  For the first time ever, I was presented with a theory that held biblical water, and lots of it.  In fact, “Islamic Antichrist” is the first work I have come across that shows how two eschatologies fit together like a glove.  Those being, the eschatology of the Bible and the eschatology of Islam.  While I say they fit together like a glove, that may not be entirely accurate.  It is more like Islamic eschatology fits into the Bible, but the Bible doesn’t fit into Islamic eschatology.  This makes it even more interesting.  It seems, and rightly so, that the Bible hold a bigger end-times picture where the Quran and the hadiths fall short.

Satan himself can be clearly seen throughout history as one that puts the screws to the truth.  He distorts it just enough so that truth becomes hard to recognize.  So, what if Satan has had a distinct hand in the writing of the Quran, in the life of Muhammed, and in the recordings of the hadiths?  What if Satan has taken the truth from the Bible and Revelation and has created a rip-off that he believes will bring incredible confusion to mankind in an attempt to move worship away from Christ and toward himself?  Does that sound off the mark for a being that has made deception his trade skill?

Richardson’s work is pretty much filled with quotations from the Quran, hadiths, and Islamic scholars from cover to cover.  In like fashion, the book is filled with Biblical quotes as well.  In any and all Biblical matters, it is difficult to be 100% complete in any work as the Bible is incredibly rich with truth, yet Richardson does a fantastic job nonetheless.  He proves he is a well studied individual with an attempt to remain unbiased.

Does Richardson present his theory as the 100 percent God-given truth?  No.  In addition to great presentation of what he think and knows from the Bible, the author also presents the issues he has wrestled with that do not make as much sense as he would like, as a good author should not withhold his findings.

Yet, despite Richardson’s incredible research, quotations, and effort to remain objective in this work, “Islamic Antichrist” becomes the target of another writer.  This isn’t unusual.  In fact, many books end up with counter-parts that attempt to refute arguments and create their own confusion while originally attempting to clear up confusion.  Author Chris White attempts a rebuttal for Richardson by releasing “Islamic Antichrist Debunked.”  Personally, and after listening to part of one of White’s chapters (yes, just part of one chapter, that’s all I could take), I decided to forgo the purchase of his book.  My decision is not based on that he may have some good content.  But, I would rather spend my reading time focusing on authors that produce original works, not trying to debunk another author.

Finally, and as usual, I chose the “Audible” version of “Islamic Antichrist.”  Though I admit the reading by Richard Powers is not sensational, it probably isn’t meant to be.  However, I did find listening to the book an easy task and Powers does a good job.

Maybe you have heard of “Islamic Antichrist” and put off its reading.  If so, maybe it is time to dig in.  If you have taken the time to read this review, then you should take the time to read “Islamic Antichrist.”

In paperback the book may be found here: Amazon link
The Audible audiobook may be found here: Audible link
I receive no commissions for the recommending this work and the links above are not affiliate links.

Should Chris White happen to stumble across this review… Chris, if you write a book that focuses on the ground issues of why you don’t believe the Mahdi and the biblical Antichrist are related, I’ll be happy to read it, but it had better be founded on facts and not an effort to defame or debunk a particular author.

Creating Your Own Family Emergency Plan

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Family Emergency PlanPrepping is more than just having a lot of great supplies. You must also have a plan if you want your family to survive any situation successfully. If you are preparing for a family rather than just yourself, there are a lot more factors that can go into a survival situation. You can’t simply grab your bug out bag and go, if you’ve got a spouse and kids. The key to successful emergency planning is not just to plan, but to communicate with your family so they know how to act when an emergency situation actually does arise. Whether it is a basic natural disaster, a powerful storm, or a true SHTF scenario, planning now will help you and your family immensely when the times comes.

The Binder System

To keep all their information in one place, many families employ the binder system. (I actually have two different binders, one for my home and one for my car). In the binder you can place all the information that you may need in the case of an emergency. Each family may have different things they want to add or include, but here are a few items to consider.

Family Prepared Binder - Preorganized Binder System Makes it Easy to Get Started

Family Prepared Binder – Pre-organized Binder System Makes it Easy to Get Started

Emergency Contacts – Your doctor’s number, and numbers for other emergency facilities and organization. You will also want to identify, in case you are not in the home when an emergency hits, who is your backup emergency contact.

Everyday Contacts – Don’t forget to include the everyday numbers that you use, with cell phones becoming the norm, people are less apt to remember numbers, so those basic contacts you may need in an emergency should be included too; daycares and schools, classes and lesson teachers and/or coaches, grandparents, neighbors, and don’t forget your number too, in case your children are with a caretaker or babysitter.

Medical & Allergy Information – If your children, or anyone in your family, needs regular medication or has allergies that could be of concern, include this information as well.

Identification of Likely Disasters – Take some time, even include your kids, to research what disasters are more likely to hit in your area. Then create different response plans catered to that specific situation.

Jobs & Responsibilities – Once you’ve identified your potential disasters, consider thinking about jobs and responsibilities that each person in your family can have in the case of a disaster situation. For instance, if there is a flood your younger kids can help move important objects off the ground, or unplug electrical devices. If you create a plan, and inform your children, even run drills if you feel it’s necessary, they will know exactly what to do in a disaster or survival situation.

Copies of Important Documents –  I keep all of our important documents in a fire and water proof safe, but certain documents I keep copies of in our binder. This works great for things like insurance cards. Be careful of keeping financial information, however, in too easily of an accessible place. I like to make copies of our credit and debit cards (front and back) but I NEVER leave that information in my car binder, just in case someone breaks into my car. My main home binder however, has copies of social security cards, financial information and Internet websites and passwords– whatever I may need if we have to bug out to a different location.

Food Storage Info – Some people like to keep track of their food storage, expiration date and shelf lives and if you are doing this, keeping a copy in your emergency binder is a smart call. Having that information at your fingertips can help you avoid using any spoiled food and making a bad situation even worse.

 

Have an Emergency Meeting Place

Ensure everyone in your family knows where to go to in case of an emergency. Your first meeting place should always be your home, but in the event that your home becomes compromised you and your family will need to know where to meet in case communication is down.

You may consider having more than one meeting place to accommodate different disasters, or potential scenarios. Either way, make it a place that isn’t impossible to get to, and a place that has several routes to get there, that way if one road is cut off, there is still another option for still reaching your safe place. Print off maps for your binder, and identify multiple routes, not only form your home, but from their schools, friends’ homes, or other places they might be. Then share these different routes with your children, so they are aware of how to safely reach their destination. You can also include a map in your kids’ bug out bags and school backpack too, just in case they are at school and have to go to your meeting spot to stay safe.

Emergency Plan Gear

There are a few items that can be useful in an emergency situation, even one that is not necessarily  a SHTF scenario. In case of snow storms, floods, earthquakes or a variety of other common natural disaster you will find these items will bring you news, safety and comfort when you need it most.

Radios & Walkie Talkies

Having an emergency radio, especially one with a NOAA weather station option allows you to stay informed in case of a power outage or loss of cell service. They have solar powered and hand crank models, as well as battery powered ones, that can work even if you are off grid. Prepared families will probably also keep a set of two way radios, or walkie talkies to keep them in touch with each other in case there is a need to be separated.

ETON SCORPION - SOLAR POWERED RADIO & LED FLASHLIGHT

ETON SCORPION – SOLAR POWERED RADIO & LED FLASHLIGHT

Blankets

Even in very warm conditions, blankets and other clothing can be used in a variety of ways, for shelter, in medical emergencies, for bedding, and much more. Having emergency blankets, as well as even some old blankets and pillows stashed away could be a huge comfort in difficult times.

Flashlights

Flashlights and other means of lighting are critical to safety and comfort, especially for a family with small children. If the power goes down, you will want to make sure you have reliable and safe light for your family.

Water and Water Filters

In the case of SHTF, and many other disaster, water sources may be scarce. Even if you have running water, certain conditions can contaminate drinking sources which is why is is always a good idea to have water stored for just such occasions. If you have a large family, however, you will find storing the amount of water you need for a longer term basis could be quite challenging which is why many prepared families make sure they have a water filter system, even if it is just a few personal water filters like Life Straws for each person in your family.

 

Preparing is more than just stockpiling stuff, it’s stockpiling knowledge and information. Creating a family binder and an emergency response plan is only one part, but an important part, of the prepper’s agenda. By making a few simple planning measures to add to your prepping procedures you will not only help  safe, but it will also keep you and your family one step ahead of the game in any level of disaster scenario.

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