Great Video on Fracking, Radiation, and The Overall Fear and False Flag Bullshit They Throw At Us

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10:19 / 14:07 RADIOACTIVE FRACKING: THE UNTOLD NATURAL GAS STORY ron johnson ron johnson 9,535 2,020 Published on Jan 20, 2016 A significant public health hazard associated with drilling for natural gas is from radioactive radon gas… Useful Links: Radon in Natural Gas https://www.nirs.org/radiation/radonm… Over 1.1 Million Active Oil and Gas Wells in the US http://www.fractracker.org/2014/03/ac… Texas fracking site that spilled 42,000 gallons of fluid into residential area hopes to reopen https://www.rt.com/usa/267838-arlingt… EPA Radon Zones (with State Information) http://www.epa.gov/radon/find-informa… Exposing the real price of the US fracking industry (PLAYLIST) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ux42t… STFN is on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/stfnews

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Slylandro

Study Reveals Amazing Surge in Scientific Hype

http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/cross-check/study-reveals-amazing-surge-in-scientific-hype/

“Although it is possible that researchers have adopted an increasingly optimistic writing approach and are ever more enthusiastic about their results…”

Nobody died. Everything is beautiful https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vTfoY4g0GZ

Dirtwater needs help on off grid projects.

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I am thinking about taking on help to build a nice place to live. No longer working myself to death and I am getting to slow to finish everything I wish to get done here at Dirtwater. Living off my assets till benefits come and its use them or lose them. The climate here is good for off grid, it never stays below freezing long and summers are only above 100*F for a couple months per year. The wooded land I call Dirtwater is a thousand feet off of a back road and has some utilities. The hope is to build a simi-offgrid situation and become as self reliant as possible. I do like some comforts and toys, I don’t plan to become like a mountain man. Purists may be welcome but judgments will not be. Its all about working together to build something good, safe and comfortable with as little of the rat race as possible. If all goes well, the plan is to build a small stationary sawmill, blacksmith/fab shop and tiny portable homes. As a disabled veteran, I would seriously consider veterans. Young or old, vet or not, male or female, it doesn’t matter. I will respond and if we click, maybe I will bring you in. No free rides here, guests here will have to help me hold down the fort. If your a city dweller and want to live nearer the dirt, this may be the spot for you. Its in the sticks but not far from cities in a fairly well populated rural area. Very good school system here if that matters.

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This Is Why You Should Stockpile: Store Shelves Stripped For Jonas

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This Is Why You Should Stockpile: Store Shelves Stripped For Jonas

Image source: Fox59.com

Shoppers in several East Coast cities were facing the nightmare of empty supermarket shelves as Winter Storm Jonas approached the region this weekend.

Empty shelves and ransacked stores were the norm in such major cities as Detroit, New York, Richmond and even Washington, D.C., according to media reports.

Staples such as bread, meat, milk and vegetables were hard to come by in the nation’s capital, leaving thousands of shoppers perplexed.

The World’s Healthiest Survival Food — And It Stores For YEARS and YEARS!

Elsewhere, a CBS 6 reporter found empty shelves at an ABC store in Willow Lawn, Virginia.

On Long Island, New York, shoppers were stripping shelves as quickly as they could at a Garden City grocery, CBS New York reported. Some supermarkets even closed for the storm.

Store shelves from Boston to Knoxville were being cleared out of critical basics such as bread and milk in anticipation of Jonas.

Major supermarket chains, including Trader Joe’s, Kroger and even Walmart were unable to keep up with the frantic demand.

In fact, shortages of basic food items were reported at some stores as early as Wednesday, January 21, even though the storm didn’t hit until two days later.

Discover The Trick To Saving Thousands At The Grocery Store. Read More Here.

Miter saw and cleaning the stove cap

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I got the new Miter saw up and working after much wailing and gnashing of teeth.  I’m a newbie in regards to some of these new tools safety features so most of my cussing was in regards to releasing the lockdown bolt for the saw arm. If you push down on the saw arm to release the tension on the bolt the saw arm will move up and down easily.  I installed a new saw blade after some figuring out how to remove the safety guard. I have to say the instruction manual for this saw is not the best I have ever used.  I’m glad I got a premium saw blade for the saw. Especially since it is a bit of a pain to replace.

On the actual use of the miter saw for cutting up mill ends for the wood stove, It took much less physical energy compared to using the B&D circular saw. The saw blade made fairly clean cuts on the old mill ends and over all this miter saw makes does a decent job as a chop saw, plus less physical work than a circular saw for cutting mill ends for fire wood is a great thing for me.

The wood stove has not been drawing air via the chimney.  Mom and I have been dealing with two basic fires. The smokey smudge and inferno.  I got up on the roof and the chimney cap was clogged with a lot of creosote. I knocked out most of the creosote build up around the stove cap and the fire place is starting to draw air properly. From what my chimney sweep told me when exposed to cold air the stove cap/spark arrestor will build up creosote because of the change in temp. from hot air from the chimney to cold winter air outside.  My wood pile got wet, so I did not burn dry wood all the time. Wet wood will cause a build up of soot and creosote. I have covered my wood with additional tarps to keep the rain/snow off of the wood. I bought some metal brackets with the addition of 2x4s will let the wood dry naturally. In addition My hope is I can add a cord per month until June/July and that will give the wood a little extra time for wood for winter to dry.

Over all for my wood stove, it looks like I need to stock up about 6 cords of wood and correct the current wood pile arrangement to insure a thorough drying of the wood.  That would give me dry wood for the upcoming winter season and dry out the extra wood for the next fire wood season.  Buying six cords of wood seems a bit daunting at first but if Idaho has more warm winters, getting a cord of wood each month should keep costs manageable.  I’ll have enough wood on hand for 2 years. At worse I know with 6 cords of wood I will have more than enough wood on hand for a very cold winter.

The Home Depot class for making a storage shelf/bench using a wood storage crate (as a base) that was outstanding. Mom and I took home one of the example/finished storage project crates and fits perfectly in the backdoor entry way for a storage bench. I was surprised by how good the the little storage crate bench looked finished and I want to add a few variations on that concept here in the house for additional storage that is functional and looks great.  I look at the basic storage crate and I know I could build that with a bit of trial and error. Everything after building a simple box that is a matter of scale and angles. Simple does not mean easy, but getting the basics down in wood working and carpentry will make big projects doable.

Update on the radiant heat barrier in the chicken coop. On average the chicken house is at least 10 degrees F. above the outside ambient temperature. Mom is not using the electric heater, and the only heat is via a 100 watt light bulb used more for 12 hours of light rather than heat.  Egg production is increasing again though Mom has older birds of the 2-5 year range.  I think Mom is a bit over zealous about “protecting” her chickens, but I am very impressed by the how well the radiant heat barrier has preformed stopping drafts and retaining heat in the chicken house.

What does your wood stove say?

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If your wood burning stove could talk, what would it say to you? Is it happy with the way you load it? Is it happy with the amount and type of wood you use?

Most off gridders are using wood to heat our homes, open fireplaces are pretty to look at, but aren’t efficient. We prefer to use a wood burning stove, a metal box that contains the wood and fire, they use much less wood and give off much more heat.

I found this video with lots of tips and tricks to help you use your wood stove more efficiently, the biggest tip I got from this video is to learn your wood stove, they each have their own personality and burn differently, some like being filled, others prefer less wood more often, experiment and learn what your stove likes best and what works best.

https://youtu.be/su6znyIVxBA

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Encore post: Make your won Copycat Little Caeser’s Pizza Dough!

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The following is an Encore post that was originally published in 2010.  It is one of the most popular posts on this blog, so we thought we would share it again for those who may not have had the chance to see it.  Happy baking!

Copycat “Little Caesar’s Pizza Dough”

I have your attention with that title don’t I?  We are continuing to focus on unique ways to use your flour.  This recipe can make some wonderful things.  It comes from a post from “Savory Seasoning” (See the recipe at the bottom of this post!).  My thanks to this blog for posting this fabulous recipe!

Now, we are not just going to make pizza.  We are going to make this a matter of convenience.  In all seriousness, that is exactly what we are going to do.  Remember that Bread maker we pulled out a few weeks ago, it should still be easy to access at this point.  Get it out.

  

The reason we are going to use this machine, is that it will do all the work.  This is very important to the LRH, and most likely everyone else, because I have a long list of things to do every day.  So, on a day you are home, and still have that long list, you can make up several batches of this and save them for later.

Pour in your warm water.

 Put in all your dry ingredients (yeast, sugar, salt).  Then add your honey, olive oil and flour.

Turn it on your dough cycle and leave!

  

 When the cycle is done, take the dough out and punch it down.

Place the dough into a gallon zip-lock bag.  My sister states that she keeps her bags and uses them over and over to put this same dough in.

This is how it looks just after I zipped the bag.

Put it in the refrigerator overnight.

This is how it looks the next day.

Lessons to be learned:

  •  It took me about 3 minutes to put everything into the bread machine
  • I only used my Food Storage ingredients.
  • I got a lot done while the bread machine did the work for me…..did you catch that?  It did the work for me.
  • Convenience:  If you make several batches in a day, you have dough for other days.  How does that work?  Take it out of the refrigerator, punch it down, wrap it in plastic wrap and get about 3 balls of dough into that same zip-lock bag and freeze them.  On the day you want to use it, take it out in the morning and let it defrost in your refrigerator.  By dinner time, it is ready to go.
  • It is a lot less expensive to make this from scratch than to purchase dough from the store or from a mix.
  • The hands on time was less than 10 minutes per batch.
  • You can make more than Pizza dough with this.  The first thought are those wonderful bread sticks that can be made.  Watch the blog for more ideas of how to use it.

Here is the recipe for “Little Caesars Pizza Dough”.  

Little Caesars Pizza Dough
http://savoryseasonings.blogspot.com/
1 1/4 cups (9.7 oz) warm water (approximately 120° F)
2 3/4 tsp. dry active yeast
2 TBSP sugar
1 TBSP Honey 
1 TBSP Olive Oil 
2 Tsp. Salt
1 1/2 cups (8 oz.) bread flour or all purpose flour
1 1/2 cups (8 oz.) whole wheat flour (optional, can use 100% bread flour or all purpose flour)
Mix water and yeast in mixing bowl and allow it to proof for 5 minutes. Mix in sugar, honey and oil. Then mix in 1 cup flour and the salt. Continue mixing in all the remaining flour until you get a nice, soft dough. Knead until dough is soft and smooth (approx. 10 minutes). 
Finish kneading on a lightly floured surface and shape into a ball. Place in the refrigerator in a covered container coated with olive oil for overnight. For the perfect flavor, it is best to time making the dough 24 hours before baking the pizza’s (for pizza Saturday at 5pm, make your dough Friday at 5pm). If you are short on time you can sacrifice some flavor and make this dough first thing in the morning and place it in the fridge until dinner that evening. 
3 hours before baking: Remove from fridge and either divide dough in half for two 12” pizzas or leave whole for one somewhat thicker 16” pizza. Work each piece of dough into balls. Allow the dough to come back to room temperature (this process generally takes 3 hours).
45 minutes before baking: With your pizza stone on the bottom rack of your oven, preheat your oven to 475° F to allow the stone to get hot enough (this process generally takes 40-50 minutes).
15 minutes before baking: Shape dough into desired pizza crust, sprinkle pizza peel, wooden cutting board or upside down cookie sheet with corn meal, flour or rice flour. Place pizza crust on top, then add toppings. Gently slide pizza onto the hot pizza stone and bake for 9-11 minutes. 

Try it today!

Survival Medicine Hour: Blizzard, Top Natural Remedies, More

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carsinsnow

26 inches of snow and high winds cost 19 people their lives this weekend on the East Coast. Would you know how to keep warm in a blizzard? Dr. Joe Alton discusses the news and basic strategies that could save your life. Also, What will you do when the pharmaceuticals run out in a survival setting? Do you know the basics of natural remedies like essential oils and herbal medicine? Joe Alton, MD, and Amy Alton, ARNP, discuss what you need to know about the medicinal benefits of various natural substances.

To listen in, click below:

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/survivalmedicine/2016/01/25/survival-medicine-hour-blizzard-natural-remedies-more

 

Joe Alton, MD

AmyandJoePodcast400x200

Learn about how to use all the tools in the medical woodshed with the 3-category Amazon bestseller “The Survival Medicine Hour“, with over 270 5-star reviews!

Glock 9mm mags

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There was a local gun show this weekend, and it seemed like a decent opportunity to go ahead and pick up a Magpul Glock mag or two to try out.

I have reservations about all-pastic mags for a couple reasons…I’m concerned about the mag body swelling when loaded to capacity and therefore not dropping free, and I’m worried about plastic feedlips losing their rigidity/tension. (Interestingly, this is the same qualms I have with plastic AR mags. However, virtually every aluminum AR mag I’ve ever met has been cheaper than a Pmag, so I have no problem sticking with aluminum AR mags.)

The Magpul mags are going for about $15 which puts them at least five bucks below OEM Glock mags. They do advertise themselves as being easier to disassemble than the Glock-made mags and, yup, the baseplates come off much easier. High visibility follower is a nice touch. Only one witness hole though…

Stuffing a buncha 9mm into one and sliding it in and outt my G19 showed that, for now, the loaded mag seems to drop free just fine. The empty mag locks the slide back like it’s supposed to as well. I need to grab a couple hundred rounds of ammo and head to the range and see how the mag performs. It’d be nice if there were a just-as-good Golck mag out there that was 25% cheaper. We’ll see.

I’ll let you know how it goes after I fire a buncha rounds from it.

Podcast-Grow or Die-Survival Gardening with David the Good- Pt2

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fruit

David the Good of TheSurvivalGardener.com is back on the show for the second half of our interview on survival gardening.  We discuss his new book, Grow or Die. We talk about what you need to produce your own food after a collapse. David gives us some great tips on grafting and propagating plants through cuttings. To learn more, visit David’s website or YouTube channel.

Is there a secret cabal working to collapse the international economy in order to usher in a global government and one-world currency? Watch through the eyes of Noah Parker as a global empire takes shape, ancient writings are fulfilled and the last days fall upon the once great, United States of America. The Days of Noah by Mark Goodwin is a fast-paced, prepper-fiction thriller series which looks at how modern conspiracies could play into Biblical prophecy concerning the end times.

prepperreconad

Cati Armor offers affordable body armor including level III trauma plates made of AR-500 steel which can endure multiple rounds from pistols and rifles up to 7.62 NATO. There plates are available with Rhino Linings coating to reduce spall.

jm2

I use JM Bullion because they have the lowest over-spot price of any dealer I have found for silver and gold bullion. JM Bullion now offers free shipping on every order!

God bless and happy prepping!

Mark

The post Podcast-Grow or Die-Survival Gardening with David the Good- Pt2 appeared first on Prepper Recon.

Five Components Determine How Healthy You Are

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healthA few years back when my kids were still pretty young, one of my girls and I and the family dog took a short walk in National Forest not too far from where we live. I had let the dog off the leash to stretch its legs while my young daughter and I enjoyed a leisurely stroll down a familiar trail. Free from the leash, the dog shot off down the trail only to come to an abrupt stop several hundred yards away, her hackles up, and staring intensely into the thick manzanita that lined each side of the trail. It was a bear with cubs.

I yelled, “run!” and my daughter took off like a rocket back the way we had come. Within seconds, I followed hoping the dog would distract the bear long enough for us to make it safely back to the vehicle. Time loses all meaning in moments like that and what could have been minutes felt like seconds. I quickly realized that the shock of accidentally crossing paths with a bear sow with cubs and the sudden burst of speed had stressed my heart. I was nowhere near close enough to the car and it already felt like my heart was going to burst and the muscles in my legs were on fire.

At the same time, the old saying, “I don’t have to outrun the bear, I just have to outrun you” flashed through my head. I was very glad to see my daughter running down the path and over fallen trees with the speed and agility of a deer. And I took comfort that, although I loved my dog very much, she would probably give her life to protect me from the bear…until she shot past me like a bullet.

I’m glad to say that we made it all out safely, including that damn dog that I wasn’t loving so much at the moment, but it was a sobering lesson. I was not in as good a shape as I thought I was. Also, thinking that my body would just know what to do in an emergency or that adrenaline would allow me to rise to the occasion like a lot of people think just wasn’t the case. When the SHTF, sometimes it’s a bear and sometimes it’s not. I wasn’t ready for any of it.

How Fit Are You?

It is a fact that past generations were more in shape compared to modern times. A healthy body that’s ready to take on whatever is demanded of it to the best of their ability should be the top priority of any prepper, not just for their own security, but also the security of loved ones that depend on them. I know that I could count on any one of my immediate family members if I ever needed help, but I also know that I have a personal responsibility not to overburden them in a crisis, and the best way I can do that is to make sure I am as healthy as possible before the SHTF. I would never want to put any of them in a potentially life threatening position to save me because I hadn’t bothered to take the time to get fit enough to save myself.

As well, many of us have physical limitations that can stop us from being as fit as we should. In an article on the subject, Tess Pennington writes, “As we get older, many of us are plagued with some type of physical limitation. Recognizing our physical weaknesses and figuring out how to make things work despite those weakness will be vital to our survival.”

Your Health Depends on These Five Components

Health, in this context, isn’t necessarily about weight, pants size, or any of the other standards of beauty frequently seen in fashion magazines. In this case, I’m talking about the ability to get the job done or get the hell out and that could mean different things depending on your own SHTF scenario.

Physical fitness can be measured by assessing five components of health: cardiovascular and respiratory, muscular strength, muscular endurance, body composition, and flexibility. If you’re neglecting any of these areas, you won’t be ready to respond.

Cardiovascular and Respiratory Fitness

Each type of fitness effects the body in different ways and they all support each other. If you’re lacking in one type of fitness, it will diminish the performance level of another. In my case, I frequently hiked, but rarely at a pace that would bring my heart rate up. Cardiovascular exercises that require endurance and raise the heart rate like those performed by runners, rowers, cyclist, and swimmers, increase the size and strength of the left and right ventricles of the heart.

“The left ventricle is one of four chambers of the heart. It is located in the bottom left portion of the heart below the left atrium, separated by the mitral valve. As the heart contracts, blood eventually flows back into the left atrium, and then through the mitral valve, whereupon it next enters the left ventricle. From there, blood is pumped out through the aortic valve into the aortic arch and onward to the rest of the body. The left ventricle is the thickest of the heart’s chambers and is responsible for pumping oxygenated blood to tissues all over the body. By contrast, the right ventricle solely pumps blood to the lungs.”

Source

My heart wasn’t strong enough to supply the boost of oxygen-rich blood quickly enough to keep up with the demand. Respiratory health ties into this- although lung function doesn’t change dramatically, oxygen that is taken into the lungs is used more effectively.

Muscle Strength

Muscular strength can be measured by the force your muscles are capable of exerting (example: lifting or pushing) and endurance is the measurement of how long your muscles can exert the force without tiring. A sudden sprint away from a bear requires both. Lifting heavy sacks of feed, children, and any number of daily activities as a mom on a farm had given me plenty of strength, but hadn’t really prepared me for endurance.

Muscles are comprised of two types of fibers: fast twitch and slow twitch. Fast twitch fibers contract quickly and use a lot of energy, but they also tire out quickly. Slow twitch fibers, on the other hand, can work for a long time without getting tired and they also require a lot of oxygenated blood. Different types of endurance training will increase one type of fiber more than the other, but both types are important for running for your life.

Body Composition & Flexibility

Body composition is simply a relative measurement of muscle, bone, water, and fat in your body. We all know that carrying too much fat, especially around the waist, is bad for our health. Many people use the Body Mass Index (BMI) to determine their fat percentage, but the BMI is not without controversy:

“BMI does not take into account age, gender, or muscle mass. Nor does it distinguish between lean body mass and fat mass. As a result, some people, such as heavily muscled athletes, may have a high BMI even though they don’t have a high percentage of body fat. In others, such as elderly people, BMI may appear normal even though muscle has been lost with aging”

(Source)

If you feel you’re carrying too much body fat, you probably are, and you should make every effort to reduce it to a healthier level. By doing so, you’ll be more physically fit, stronger, and have more endurance to meet the increased stress and physical demands of an emergency.

Flexibility, the range of motion across a joint, is also an important factor in being prepared. It’s much more difficult to perform a task when one isn’t flexible and it greatly increases the chances of injury. Flexibility exercises help increase he range of motion of joints, ligaments, and tendons so that muscles can perform at their peak.

Conclusion

In the years since, I’m happy to say, I’ve made a concerted effort to get physically fit and now at 50 years old, I’m probably in the best shape I’ve ever been in. I can hike eight miles with a 30-pound pack and a 1000-foot elevation gain in under two hours. It certainly wasn’t easy and there are times, especially around the holidays, that I let things slide. I probably still can’t outrun that damn dog, but I feel pretty confident that I can outrun you!
Next up, we’ll talk about some frugal ways to incorporate fitness into your everyday lives without breaking the bank so you too can get in shape to survive the bears in your life.

Ruby is a first generation Californian who grew up in the heart of the Central San Joaquin Valley farming community. She’s been involved in agriculture for 40 years and learned to preserve food, traditional home arts, to hunt and fish, raise livestock and garden from her Ozark native mother.

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

From the Archives: The Disaster Supply Room

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This is not my basement, but this is the idea.  This particular basement comes from www.abowlfulloflemons.net

  

I first wrote this post in February of 2013.   I have had numerous requests for a reprise of the original post.

        

     It is no secret that one of the rooms in my basement is a Disaster Supply Room or DSR for short.  (No, a DSR is not the most advanced nursing degree which will be required by all new nurses after 2018)
My DSR is a small room with wooden shelves all around the periphery of the room, and a locking closet.  You would think that having gone from a single emergency supply shelf in my first apartment, to an entire closet in the next house, to a large walk in closet for supplies in the suburban house before, that I would know what I am doing by now, in terms of design and set up.  In 2005 when we finally moved our emergency supplies into this new DSR, we ran out of space very quickly.  My original vision had been the locking closet for peroxide, and alcohol at the bottom, and over the counter (OTC) meds on the shelves above.  I planned to put evacuation kits, evacuation bedding, and other supplies on the shelves in the periphery of the room to be grabbed easily.  Then, I added a place for preparedness books. Afterward, I added a place for the Evacuation Notebooks, including medical evacuation notebooks etc..  After that, I added a place for communications equipment and it was full.  There was nowhere for bottled water, freeze dried or canned food.  With a large family there are lots of DSR needs.  I decided to keep the room set up as is, and to buy three of the very sturdy shelving units sold at Sam’s Club which have wheels.   This allowed me to cluster them, and move them when I need to create an aisle through which to walk when I need something.  Now I have freeze dried food, some water, toiletries, and I keep some unopened veterinary oral meds there for our farm animals.

             The idea behind the Disaster Supply Room is that in an emergency, anyone could enter, obtain the emergency item they need, and then use it. It is therefore very important that it be orderly and preferable that it be inventoried, and the stock regularly rotated.

             In August of 2011, we had a 5.8 or 5.9 earthquake, depending upon which authority you ask, which was centered not too far from here.  Houses broke in half, two  schools, a middle school and a high school were eventually demolished as a result of the damage they sustained that day. Many houses were reduced to being worth only their land value, when the foundations were irreparably damaged.  Historical properties lost chimneys as if they were legos.   We were fairly lucky in that we had less damage than most people.  We built this home using a full basement with thick and tall walls made by Superior Walls.  This and a fair measure of good luck limited the damage we had.  We had no real damage to the house itself, although the well had slightly muddy water for a couple of weeks.  However, the pantry in the kitchen did throw contents to the other side of the room.(I apparently left the door unlatched that day)  A large  sealed plastic bucket of ketchup which came from Sam’s Club which I use to add a half a cup of ketchup to a large meatloaf on occasion, fell from the top of the frij, rupturing leaving abundant ketchup far and wide. It looked like a crime scene !  This took time to clean up, but we were thrilled that the farm and it’s outbuildings did not sustain more damage. I also lost an antique piece of cloisonne as it fell from the mantle.

I have multiple steel shelf units such as these which are filled and stacked against each other.  They can be pulled out sideways to remove or to load things we need.  There is an incredible amount of space in such a set up. Sam’s Club also sells longer units than this, and some that do not have wheels for heavier articles. 
These are the size metal shelves I use in the center of the DSR, leaving a clear aisle to walk around them to access the items of the peripheral wooden shelves built in to the finished wall.  (Picture: idareyoutoeatit.com )

 

            About this time, I was aware that things had fallen from some of the shelves in the DSR.  I was concerned about a lot of other things, and so I resolved to get back there later.  I have used some things from there since that time, but things here have been busy. Since the earthquake, we have built an additional animal storage building on the farm, so that everything animal can be in one space. I wrote two books, and we helped our daughter locate and clean up a home she bought as a government repossession. Let’s face it.   I didn’t really want to go through everything which had fallen down in some of the areas of the DSR.    This week I finally got to it.  I started by picking up all the things which had fallen on the floor from the Sam’s Club metal shelves.  I found bottles of Apinol.  I found bottles of liquid soap. I found a large package of Omeprazole.  I found a six pack of D-Mannose. 

              A couple of hours later I realized what I had suspected originally, which is that although the heavier items remained secure on the built in shelves in the periphery of the room, the tall stainless steel shelves with wheels shook during the quake and many light items, packaged gauge, vinyl gloves, and all the aforementioned articles fell and rolled.to many different places in the room. The only reason things didn’t get destroyed, is that there was relatively little activity in that room, and therefore no one to inadvertently step on them.  In fact, until I got the room reorganized and the set up repaired, I have been stacking other large cans of freeze dried food elsewhere.
             The reason I wanted to relate this to all of you is that there is some learning that all of us can do here, myself very much included.

 1. To prevent things from shaking and falling from these tall steel wheeled shelving systems a la Sam’s Club, if you have them,  simply buy whatever color and brand bungee cords you like.   On each shelf, front and back, select the size that will hold things securely when there is shaking, or even simple normal moving. Simply hook a bungee on each side to provide a stretched guide which prevents bottles and other items from falling forward off the shelf in the front. Do the same to the back.  These are simply unhooked if needed, and most times, they can remain intact when I collect something from the shelf.

2.  Try to stock more freeze dried food than canned.  The canned food does age and need to be used within 5-10 years and some of the freeze dried really is good for 25-30 years. Also canned food is being made with thinner cans, and some of these items I would not trust as long as 5-10 years.  Freeze dried food is also a lot lighter and so long as you have access to water when it’s time to reconstitute all of it, freeze dried food is MUCH LIGHTER than canned when stored.  This has all sorts of benefits, including when it’s time to rotate stock.

3. Place smaller medical supplies like wrapped roller gauze and elastic bandages in square plastic open topped baskets. This way, fewer things tumble out when you take one.

4. Make liberal use of freezer bags.  Many of these things store much better in freezer bags than they do in the boxes in which you bought them. They also occupy less space. I have fifty pairs of all different types of shoe laces, all in a freezer bag which takes up next to no space.

5. Group like things together.  This sounds obvious, but it doesn’t always work in the manner in which you initially cluster.  I tried grouping all oral meds together, and all topical meds together.  What I found is that it worked far better to group things in like categories.  For example, I now have a shelf for everything related to cold and flu. This includes oral meds, and vitamin C, along with things like vaseline and Vick’s vapo-rub generic.  In the old system, vaseline and Vick’s would have been groups separately with topical medications, leaving someone searching through several different DSR regions, paper, topical, and in the closet for OTC meds..   Now, everything from masks, kleenex with lotion, etc. are all grouped together for the ease of the person, who might actually be ill while entering and gathering supplies for themselves.

6. Mark true emergency supplies differently.  I have a rack where I hook packaged Epi-pens,  Glucagon kits, Snake Bite Kits etc.  My family is very likely to grab emergency supplies and not so likely to go digging looking for some of the obscure things I stock, like the tool to remove rings when there is a hand injury.   Another area has cyalume lightsticks, for quick and easy distribution to the family.

       My next task for the DSR is to install some better lighting.  Presently, there are two bright lights in the tall ceiling in the finished room.  However in numerous parts of the room, where one might need to read tiny writing while making a selection, there are shadows as the supplies are stacked very high on metal shelving units.  I am thinking that LED lighting in chair rail fashion, around the periphery of the room might be an economical and safe way of lighting all the supplies when needed.   Tying up one hand while holding a flashlight while looking for a particular item, has not worked very well.

This is an example of the type of LEDs I plan to use in the room.  Mine came from Harbor Freight. These can be a big help in lighting up a DSR.

Medical Research. VIDEO.

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Medical research in Australia is being quashed by our government. Just another move to put Australia behind the 8 ball & a little closer to being a third world country.


This orange has the power to change perceptions of dementia. But it all starts with you. Watch our video featuring Christopher Eccleston to find out how you can be part of #sharetheorange

Posted by Alzheimer’s Research UK on Friday, 15 January 2016

17 Survival Uses for Coffee Filters and Coffee Grounds

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As a prepper, it’s always wise to learn how to take everyday items and use them in ways that will make life easier during a disaster. Knowing how to do this might even save your life someday. One everyday item that you will definitely find in the majority […]

The post 17 Survival Uses for Coffee Filters and Coffee Grounds appeared first on Urban Survival Site.

Global Sea Ice Data Page – Updated for 2016

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All from Watts up With That

What cool charting
https://ads.nipr.ac.jp/vishop/vishop-extent.html?S

Antarctic Satellite Imagery:
Terra 4km True Color Antarctic Satellite Image – Mosaic Image – With Zoom – NASA
Terra 4km Bands 3-6-7 Antarctic Satellite Image – Antarctic Satellite Mosaic Image – With Zoom – NASA
Aqua 4km True Color Antarctic Satellite Image – Mosaic Image – With Zoom – NASA


Source Guide:
Danish Meteorological Institute (DMI) – Centre for Ocean and Ice
Home Page – http://ocean.dmi.dk/english/index.php
Arctic Page – http://ocean.dmi.dk/arctic/index.uk.php
arctic.io
Home Page – http://www.arctic.io/
Satellite Observations Page – http://www.arctic.io/observations/
climate4you.com – Ole Humlum – Professor, University of Oslo Department of Geosciences:
Home Page – http://climate4you.com/
Ole Humlum Bibliography – http://climate4you.com/Text/BIBLIOGRAPHY%20OLE%20HUMLUM.pdf
Cryosphere Today – Arctic Climate Research at the University of Illinois:
Home Page – http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/
Products Page – http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/
Images Indexed By Date – http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/
Northern Hemisphere Sea Ice Area – http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/timeseries.anom.1979-2008
Southern Hemisphere Sea Ice Area – http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/timeseries.south.anom.1979-2008
moyhu – Nike Stokes
Home Page – http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com.au/
Regional Hi-Res SST Movies – http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com.au/p/sst-regional-movies-as-described-here-i.html
Collection of High Resolution NOAA SST Images with WebGL – http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com.au/p/blog-page.html
Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) – HYCOM Consortium for Data-Assimilative Ocean Modeling
NRL Home Page – http://www.nrlmry.navy.mil/
NRL Products Page – http://www.nrlmry.navy.mil/proddemo.htm
HYCOM Home Page – http://www7320.nrlssc.navy.mil/hycomARC/
Satellite Products Page- http://www.nrlmry.navy.mil/sat_products.html
Data Page – http://www.nrlmry.navy.mil/archdat/
Multi-view – http://www.nrlmry.navy.mil/sat-bin/global.cgi
Navel Coastal Ocean Model – http://www7320.nrlssc.navy.mil/global_ncom/
FTP Page – http://www7320.nrlssc.navy.mil/global_ncom/Links/
FTP Page Global – http://www7320.nrlssc.navy.mil/global_ncom/Links/glb/
National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC):
Home Page – http://nsidc.org/
FTP Page – http://nsidc.org/data/seaice_index/images/
Regional FTP Page – ftp://sidads.colorado.edu/DATASETS/NOAA/G02186/plots/
Data Search Page – http://nsidc.org/searchlight/
Northern Hemisphere Sea Ice Extent – ftp://sidads.colorado.edu/DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/north/daily/data/
Southern Hemisphere Sea Ice Extent – ftp://sidads.colorado.edu/DATASETS/NOAA/G02135/south/daily/data/
University of Bremen:
Home Page – http://www.iup.uni-bremen.de/eng/
Sea Ice Page – http://iup.physik.uni-bremen.de:8084/ssmis/
International Arctic Research Center/Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (IARC-JAXA)
Home Page – http://www.ijis.iarc.uaf.edu/en/
FTP Page – http://www.ijis.iarc.uaf.edu/en/home/
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) – Lance Modis
Home Page – http://rapidfire.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov/imagery/
Rapid Response Satellite Page – http://earthdata.nasa.gov/data/near-real-time-data/rapid-response
National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) – National Climate Data Center
Home Page – http://lwf.ncdc.noaa.gov/oa/ncdc.html
Public FTP Page – http://www1.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/cmb/
National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) – National Weather Service – Environmental Modeling Center
Home Page – http://polar.ncep.noaa.gov/
Sea Ice Analyses Page – http://polar.ncep.noaa.gov/seaice/Analyses.html
Public FTP Page – ftp://polar.ncep.noaa.gov/pub/
Sea Ice FTP Page – ftp://polar.ncep.noaa.gov/pub/ice/
Regional Arctic Sea Ice FTP Page – ftp://sidads.colorado.edu/DATASETS/NOAA/G02186/plots/
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) – National Ice Center:
Home Page http://www.natice.noaa.gov/mission.html?bandwidth=high
National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) – National Weather Service NOAA Arctic Cam Page:
http://www.arctic.noaa.gov/gallery_np.html
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) – Earth System Research Laboratory (ESRL)
Home Page – http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/
Physical Sciences Division (PSD) Products Page – http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/products/
Physical Sciences Division (PSD) Data Data Page – http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/data/
Physical Sciences Division (PSD) Data Maps Page – http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/map/
Nansen Environmental and Remote Sensing Center (NERSC) – Arctic Regional Ocean Observing System (ROOS):
Home Page – http://arctic-roos.org/
Sea Ice Charts – http://arctic-roos.org/observations/satellite-data/sea-ice/ice-area-and-extent-in-arctic
Norway Meteorological SAF Sea Ice:
http://saf.met.no/p/ice/index.html
Washington University North Pole Environmental Observatory:
http://psc.apl.washington.edu/northpole/

Hawaii Whale Population Severly Reduced. Related to Alaska UME This Summer?

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I did find a few 2016 video of Hawaii whale on Youtube, I would expect there to be much more if there were more whales.

10 minutes filming 1 mother and calf, off Maui, Jan 10, no other whales seen

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8e5d6MkxgQE

Lahaina whale watch Jan 5

This is the questionable photos, that made worldwide exposure.    A blatant attempt to minimize the hugely important issue of “lack of whales” in Hawaii.

https://www.facebook.com/kennychoi4/

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/whale-breaches-maui-paddle-boarders_us_56a292e7e4b0404eb8f19937

14 Sneaky-Smart Ways to Cut Your Home Heating Bills

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14 Sneaky-Smart Ways to Cut Your Home Heating Bills Homeowners will always feel that hit to the pocketbook in the winter from rising energy costs. According to the Department of Energy, the largest energy expense in the average US home is space heating, which accounts for 45% of energy bills. The average US household spent …

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Truth in Training

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A few weeks ago, I read a fascinating post about how active shooter scenarios would play out if some of the participants were CCW permit holders. It is worth your time to read and watch the accompanying video segments. I won’t reveal any spoilers but they key takeaway is this: Weapons trainer Travis Bond said […]

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How To Build a Gluten Free Pantry on a Budget

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How To Build a Gluten Free Pantry on a Budget These days, more and more people are suffering from some form of gluten intolerance, ranging from mild digestive discomfort to becoming violently ill. If you or a family member have difficulty digesting wheat, have you taken gluten-free prepping into consideration when building your food stockpile? …

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6 Recipes You Can Make With Snow (Not Just Snow Cones!)

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6 Recipes You Can Make With Snow (Not Just Snow Cones!) Often when it snows, we are not too happy about it. We have to shovel the driveway and don’t even mention digging your car out of the mountain of snow that has accumulated after a long day at work! It’s always so darn cold. It …

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What will really happen on the ham bands when SHTF?

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Let’s talk ham bands for a bit (if you are already a ham, I know you know this stuff, this is for the non-ham).  Propagation (the ability for signals to reach distance) varies a lot.  Some bands have nearly consistent propagation all the time.  For example, the 2 meter ham band (144MHz-148MHz) and the 70 centimeter ham band (420MHz-450MHz) are fairly consistent.  If you have a repeater in town, you will likely have similar performance day after day (with some variation, but not too much).  Also, higher frequencies are good for line of sight, but do not travel well through ground or obstructions.

Now, let’s drop to the lower end of the spectrum.  Whereas 2M and 70cm have fairly consistent performance on the high end, 160M (1.8MHz-2.0MHz) and 80M (3.5MHz-4.0MHz) have fairly consistent performance on the low end (at least for nigh-time communication).  The bands between these two sets of bands can be very inconsistent.  Hams refer to “band openings” as times when the bands open up (many times due to conditions in the ionosphere).

If you are not familiar with the ARRL band plan, see it here: http://www.arrl.org/files/file/Regulatory/Band%20Chart/Hambands_color.pdf

So, what happens in a lights out scenario or in another situation when people are forced to use ham bands?  Let’s look at the amateur radio population (http://www.n0hr.com/ham_radio_population.htm).

See the link above from the N0HR website above.  It is amazing the Japan almost represents half of the world-wide amateur radio population with 1.3 million.  The US represents 680 thousand.  However, even the 680,000 in the US represents a ham radio problem.

Let’s say that just 0.5 percent of the 680,000 actually have a ham radio that operates on the 80 meter band (this is the most likely band for communicating distance).  That’s 34,000.  Let’s say most of these hams, like 75%, prefer SSB (voice) over CW or data modes.  That’s 25,500.  Let’s say that 80 meters is the ham band of choice for ham radio in hard times since propagation at night is pretty good and signals can reach hundreds of miles.  An “extra” class license permits SSB communications from 3.6MHz to 4.0MHz (let’s not split hairs over classes of licenses, let’s just go with the full available band).  SSB signals typically eat up about 3kHz.  The remaining 400kHz for SSB divided by 3kHz is 133 (actually 132 since one of the SSB signals would overlap out of band).

For the sake of the example, let’s also say that the ham operators are pretty well coordinated and everyone is communicating via nets where at least 10 persons per net.  Let’s also say that each net is designated to operate during a 2 hour window each evening.  That means at the best case 133 available SSB frequencies times 10 operators, or 1,330, can be engaged in communications at the same time (whether listening or whatever).  Multiply this number by 4 to represent 8 hours a night (with 2 hours per net), that would be 5,320.  This is a far cry from the potential 25,000 that may want to be engaged in communications and have the appropriate gear.

What does this mean?  This means in a best case scenario when every ham operator has their radio tuned properly to prevent frequency overlap and is legally communicating within the band and given the conditions stated in this mental exercise, the 80 meter band would be overwhelmingly crowded.

Factors to consider:

  • Most would be listening via SSB capable radios which has no impact on transmission.
  • 80 meter communications can transmit hundreds of miles, but hams would likely turn down their transmission outputs due to power constraints and to better localize communications
  • Other “band openings” would drive traffic to open bands when available
  • Local 2 meter communications still remains local and those just “chewing the cud” with other locals would likely choose 2 meters instead of piling up on 80 meters
  • The mental exercise presented above assumes that hams have access to a power source for their radio gear
  • Ham bands would likely be packed with hams and non-hams alike due to the nature of emergency communications
  • People would probably not follow FCC guidelines and would communicate on any frequency that they could get to work
  • Working a radio in CW (morse code) and data modes can take up very little bandwidth
  • My scenario only addresses use by 1/2 of 1 percent that are actively using the 80 meter band.  We have a serious communication pileup if even 2 percent of licensed hams in the US use the 80 meter band for transmission.

If you haven’t taken the time to get your ham license.  Do it!  It is super easy with websites like hamtestonline.com to help you.  You can even get online with a cheap Baofeng UV-5R and start hitting your local repeaters.  Additionally, learning morse code can be a huge benefit as CW takes up significantly less bandwidth and signal can travel much further on the same amount of power (see article: http://46.101.105.170/you-can-really-learn-morse-code-no-i-a/).

It’s Winter So You Have To Expect and Prepare For Snow Ice and Wind

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Winter Storm Traffic

The news channels and the Internet show miles and miles of vehicles stranded on slick roads. They show cars that have smashed into each other and some simply abandoned. The pictures and videos show cars off in ditches and motorists walking away from their vehicles, walking to where, though, well that’s anyone’s guess. Walking into another crisis is the likely outcome.

Emergency workers in Kentucky along with the National Guard were patrolling Interstate 75 helping stranded motorists, by providing water, fuel, and snacks and trying to move cars out of the way of emergency vehicles. Eventually certain stretches of the Interstate were closed to non-emergency traffic. People trying to get home or get to the store jammed the highways preventing anyone from getting anywhere and add slick roads to the mix and you have a disaster in the making.

Snowplows in some cities could not get ready for the massive blizzard of 2016 because there were too many motorists on the highways. Apparently everyone was let out of work at the same time. No thought was given as to the impact this would have. No one thought ahead, a storm is coming so let’s jam the highways by making people come into work and then let them out at noon like every other business and governmental offices.

Road crews were trying to treat the roadways with salt and plow what little snow had already fallen, but there were too many motorists trying to get home, or trying to get to the stores and many could not do either. In Washington D.C. a few inches of snow paralyzed the city, the blizzard had not even made its way to the city, and yet, chaos ensued.

By late Friday, the 23rd of January 2016 Virginia State Police had reported 989 car crashes statewide since the storm began, and had assisted nearly 800 disabled vehicles according to Ken Schrad, spokesman for the Virginia State Police Joint Information Center ( Associated Press, 2016).

We have talked about this in previous articles. Talked about how important it is to stay informed and to plan. Anyone listening to the news and weather reports was not taken by surprise and yet it seems tens of thousands if not millions of people were not prepared. Did they not know and so were not prepared, or rather did they know the storm was coming and did not prepare anyway, or did they not prepare adequately.

You should not allow the government to dictate your moves during a crisis. Do not wait on them to tell you snow is coming and you need to get ready. Do not wait for them to tell you to get chains for your tires and to stock up on essentials, and do not wait on them to bring you food and water as you wait in your vehicle hoping against hope the miles upon miles of cars will move soon.

Do not wait for them to say, “Hey, it’s snowing 3 inches an hour, so maybe you better stay home and off the highways”.

You cannot start planning the day of the crisis or even a few days before, you have to plan all year. It’s winter you have to expect snows, ice, and heavy winds. You have to expect gridlocked highways and shortages at the grocery store.

Start planning early. Save up sick days and vacation time for these types of situations. Unfortunately, those without vacation time or sick days coming cannot always stay home if a storm is coming. Employers need to readjust their emergency planning for times like this as well. Letting everyone out of work at the same time is unavoidable in many cases, but why have everyone come to work in the first place when a blizzard of historic proportions is predicted.

Look ahead during the summer months and save a few sick days and have a few days of vacation time set back.

If you have to travel make sure your vehicle is ready by having chains, food, water, blankets, and sleeping bags in the car. Winter clothing and suitable shoes for snow and ice should be in your vehicle as well. Be prepared to sit for hours or even overnight in your vehicle and to survive this you need warm clothing, blankets, candle heaters, food, water, and communication devices.

Why does everyone wait until snowflakes start falling to rush to the stores? Why didn’t everyone already have their emergency supplies sitting on the pantry shelves? Good questions and we have asked these very questions every time something like this happens.

Your Survival Is Up To You

You may not always get the National Guard and emergency services to deliver food and water to your car, like some drive in fast food restaurant, while you are stranded along a highway in a snowstorm or during any other crisis for that matter. They may get to some people, but may not get to all, so you have to be ready to go it alone. The best remedy, however, is not to be on the highways in the first place, this ensures you will not be stranded on one.

Plan far enough ahead so you do not have to be out in the storm. The police and others are pleading with motorists to stay off the highways so road crews can do their jobs and so emergency first responders can get to the sick and injured. Do not become part of the problem during a crisis.

Associated Press. (2016). Retrieved 2016, from http://www.foxnews.com/us/2016/01/23/8000-flights-canceled-coastal-flooding-feared-as-major-blizzard-slams-northeast.html?intcmp=hpbt1

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Food Storage Recipe – Easy Chicken Alfredo

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When you ‘re snowed in you can come up with stuff to eat on a whim and if you have a well stocked pantry you will have a lot of variety!
Just grab a box of alfredo flavored mac&cheese. Add a can of chicken and cream of chicken soup.
Cook the noodles, add it all together. The soup is used in place of the milk. Add broccoli if you have it. I use frozen chopped.
Quick lunch.

East Coast Storm: 7 Tips to Keep in mind.

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A person walks through the blowing snow in Bowling Green on January 22.

http://edition.cnn.com/2016/01/22/us/snowfall-records-winter-storm-washington/index.html

So the big East Coast storm is causing the expected problems. I hope everyone stocked up on the winter basics, food, water, fuel, batteries, gas, generator, medicine, etc and you’re reading this while warm and cozy at home.
How are you dealing with the storm in your area? Any thoughts, experiences or lessons learned? Feel free to leave your comments below.
Now its time to apply some good old common sense:
1)Dear God do NOT run your generator indoors. Just don’t. It’s the kind of mistake you get to make only once. Last year an entire family, dad and kids, died because of this.
2)Same goes for heaters, propane and kerosene or any other combusting heaters you may be using. Have a CO detector and make sure to open a window an inch or two just in case.
3)Don’t travel if you can avoid it. Traffic accidents are the main cause of death during storms.If you must travel, have supplies for several days, food, water and warm clothes.
4)Careful when walking too, even short distances or just around the house. Slipping on ice is the most common cause of injuries. Overestimating your capabilities may leave you stuck in the middle of the storm, even if you think you can walk short distances.
5)Take it easy if you have to shovel snow. The cold temperatures may trick you into not realizing how much effort you’re doing. 5 minutes at a time, then rest. Every year several people die due to heart attacks while shovelling snow. By the way, this should also remind us all of the importance of staying fit.
6)Keep your cell phone charged. Charge that little battery bank as well (this one works great btw). It’s a waste of fuel to use your generator just to charge a phone or tablet.
7)Check on your loved ones daily. If you have neighbours on their own or older folks check on them too. Even better, send your teen son to lend a hand. They can use the exercise and practice of face to face social interaction. Really, if you have never done it before give it a try. Even if you never said a word to that old couple down the road, trust me they will REALLY appreciate if you or your kid drops by to see if they’re doing ok.
So that just few tips. Try to make the most of it. Even if you have power try playing some board games and spending some time with the family engaging in actual conversation or doing something together.
It’s my first winter here in the Costa del Sol in Spain and while I do see the practical advantage of not having winter(there’s people sunbathing on the beach here as I write this), I do miss having a bit of snow. I’m still wearing flip flops and 5.11 shorts. I’ll probably walk to the beach after lunch.
Take care folks, enjoy the rest of your weekend.
FerFAL

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”.

3 Simple Ways To Start Eliminating Preservatives From Your Diet – And Save Money!

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One of our big goals for 2016 is to all but eliminate preservatives from our diet.   Without getting into specifics on the negative health impact of preservatives – I think it’s pretty fair to say that reducing or eliminating them can be

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Is It Wrong To Be Angry With God?

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Is It Wrong To Be Angry With God?

Image source: Pixabay.com

Loss of a life, loss of a job and loss of a home. All these losses and more in our lives may cause us to be angry. Angry at the circumstances, angry at the consequences and even angry at God. But should we ever focus our anger at God for the seemingly devastating and hurtful things that happen in our lives?

As a grief and end-of-life counselor, I have sat with more than one person who has expressed being angry at God. I myself, even though difficult to admit, have been angry with God over circumstances in my life. And that is what has led me to investigate this issue through the lens of the Bible in the search for the truth.

In my search, I stumbled across another interesting question. Why do we not direct our anger at Satan, who is, after all, the proverbial fly in our ointment, the tempter and bringer of chaos (Job 1:7, Job 2:7, Matt. 16:23, Luke 22:3, 2 Cor. 11:4)? Why is it that we choose to lash out at our Sovereign Lord, who protects us, provides for us and has given us the opportunity for eternal life (John 3:16-17)?

The conclusion to my research and these questions lies in our obedience (1 Peter 1:14). God has never promised us problem-free days void of stress and complications. To the contrary, the Bible warns us that while in this world, we will have trouble (John 16:33) and that the days are evil (Eph. 5:16). It even says that we will face trials of many kinds (James 1:2). In the book of Job, we read that God allows us to be tried and tempted to a point — a point which He controls to build our perseverance, strength, faith and trust (Rom. 5).

Christian Heroes For Christian Kids: These Amazing Stories Are Putting God Back Into History!

A woman asked me recently: “Why does He (God) allow small children to be abused”? My initial answer was an honest, “I don’t know.” I continued my answer by sharing with her what I understood about God’s character: that He is sovereign, omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent, loving, merciful, king and forgiving. Then I posed a point of thought. Knowing all these things about the character of God, I shifted focus to the character of man and the role of man, our role in the lives of one another.

Is It Wrong To Be Angry With God?

Image source: Pixabay.com

What if God had called someone to intercede on this child’s behalf and they remained silent? What if God was calling to the abuser to stop and they chose to ignore His voice? Should our anger remain with God or should our anger lie with the persons who are not heeding the calling of God in their lives?

Songwriter Matthew West stated this concept beautifully in his song “Do Something”:

“…people living in poverty, children sold into slavery, the thought disgusted me. So, I shook my fist at heaven, ‘God, why don’t you do something?’ He said, ‘I did. I created you’. If not us, then who?”

The most common question I am asked by families with a loved one on hospice services is “why does he/she have to suffer?” Again, my initial honest answer is “I don’t know” followed by what I do know about our God: He is sovereign, He has a plan, we don’t see it all, and this is only a piece of the plan.” And again, it comes down to our obedience. How will we choose to respond to the tragedy?

Want To Know About The REAL Constitution And What The Founders Truly Intended?

Will we continue to trust in Him and not lean on our own understanding of the situation at hand (Prov. 3:5-6), or will we give into the temptation to become angry and bitter at God before we see the totality of the events unfolded (Acts 8:23)? Will we be patient with God (Col. 3:12)? Will we pray for revelation and understanding (Luke 18:1)? Or, will we wallow in our anger and let the devil get a foothold of our hearts (Eph. 4:27)?

Being angry and expressing anger to God is common and will probably be something that we will continue to experience at different points in our lives. The real question is what will you do with your anger and will you seek the truth in your anger or will you let your anger develop into sin in your life (Eph. 4:26)? Practicing surrender to God’s truth is not easy, especially in times of tragedy and grief. It takes obedience, willingness and a change of heart.

In these times of anger, I encourage you to seek out God’s Word. Read and pray about your particular situation and ask for God’s help. The Bible is not a fairytale book where every story has a happy ending. The Bible is full of real life tragedy and loss and of how people dealt with their circumstances.

Express your feelings to God in prayer; however, be reminded that there is always hope (Rom. 12:12). Satan would like nothing more than to use the situation in your life to erode your confidence and faith. God would like nothing more than to use the situation to strengthen and encourage your faith.

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world!” (John 16:33).

Awaken Your Child’s Love Of History And Put God Back Into History! Read More Here.

Revelation 6:10

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They cried in a loud voice, “O [Sovereign] Lord, holy and true, how long now before You will sit in judgment and avenge our blood upon those who dwell on the earth?”

     If we are any kind of serious student of the Bible, this verse will pierce our hearts.  It is a picture of the martyrs for Christ crying out for His righteous indignation over their physical deaths at the hands of God-haters.  Notice, I said physical deaths, because the persecutors of God’s own can only kill the body, and after that, there is no more that they can do; our spirits live.  
   And I believe that the spirits of these holy martyrs now exist very near to Christ in Heaven and are mentioned in various translations as being “at the foot of the altar” or “under the altar”.  Now, I have read various commentaries that attempt to explain that this is symbolic because there is no way that there could be an altar big enough to accommodate all the Christian martyrs throughout time.  But that strikes me as limiting God and His creation of Heaven.  Don’t you think He can make it as big as He wants? 
     I also believe that God’s Temple on earth is an exact replica of His Temple that is in Heaven, and the Throne Room may be the Holy of Holies in the earthly model.  Granted, I can’t prove any of that, and to be honest, it doesn’t really matter to me because the point of this Scripture is not to determine what or where the altar is, but to recognize, first, the reason that these martyrs suffered.  It was because they believed the Word of God, and they declared the truth of it, and they boldly confessed their faith by holding fast to it without wavering, even though they died for it.
     The second point of this verse is that these martyrs expect Christ to avenge their deaths.  They expect Jesus to impart a righteous response to their persecution for the honor of God and Himself; for the Gospel Message that they were willing to die for; and for the holy terror and persuasion of others that this will be a part of their experience as Evil continues to march towards the final battle.  
     Also, notice that they do not ask God and Jesus to give them the means to avenge themselves.  They know that God will take a just revenge upon the sin of persecution, and they leave it to Him to execute.  They also know, as Matthew Henry explains so well, “There is a number of Christians, known to God, who are appointed as sheep for the slaughter, set apart to be God’s witnesses.  As the measure of the sin of persecutors is filling up, so is the number of the persecuted martyred servants of Christ. When the number of martyrs is fulfilled, God will take a just and glorious revenge upon their cruel persecutors; he will bring tribulation to those who have spilled the blood of martyrs.  
     Down through the centuries, Christians have pictured those martyred spirits as coming from their Age.  And so, we, too, can imagine the spirits of the men, women, and children who are dying for Christ in the Middle East; imagine them crying out from the altar at the feet of Jesus.  And there are martyrs who will give their lives from our land, and we must prepare ourselves to be as convicted and steadfast as those faithful who have preceded us.
     Sadly, there are too many Christians in America who think that Revelation 6:10 could never apply to them.  They only see Jesus as the gentle Lamb.  They cannot conceive Him as being angry or that the wrath of the Lamb will be exceedingly dreadful.  They cannot imagine that it might be their blood that cries out for vengeance.  Are we getting close to that final number of martyrs?  It sure feels like there is an acceleration, doesn’t it?  This much I know … we have had our season of Grace, and the Bible tells us that God will have His day of righteous wrath.  When that day comes, the most evil sinners will not be able to stand before Him.  But the question we all need to ask ourselves is this: Am I ready to stand for Him?

A Quick Guide To Shooting Fundamentals

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It’s still not too late to start worrying about your safety and actually do something about it. It will be, though, if you wait until SHTF and you won’t be able to make good use of all the guns and ammo you stockpiled for your and your family’s defense!

We wrote before on the importance of practicing you skills and especially your shooting skills. An unsure hand and a moment of hesitation can take you from the shooter position to the target one in a second. So start working now on you skills, whenever you get the chance and keep these tips in mind:

Shooting infographic

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This article has been written by Brenda E. Walsh for Survivopedia.

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Chaga Mushroom: Tinder Fungus and Pharmacy Growing on a Tree

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by Todd Walker

Chaga Mushroom- Tinder Fungus and Pharmacy Growing on a Tree - TheSurvivalSherpa.com

On a warm July day in 1993, my interpreter and I took a stroll in a beautiful white birch forest outside our youth camp in Siberia. Papery tree trunks erupted from the landscape as far as the eye could see. I’d once drawn a forest scene like this in sixth grade but had never touched, smelled, and listened to such picturesque trees growing east of the Ural Mountains.

As we walked, Sergei stopped and pointed out a black mass growing on the side of a tree. Little did I know how important this crusty, charcoal looking fungus called Chaga (Inonotus obliquus) was to the people of Siberia. Twenty-plus years later, I’m just discovering why this wild mushroom is called a…

“Gift from God”

We humans have been using the wild plant world to heal and nourish since our beginnings. Oftentimes we walk past nature’s medicine cabinet unaware of its beneficial properties underfoot and overhead.

I’m always cautious about harvesting wild mushrooms. However, Chaga mushrooms look nothing like a typical story book mushroom with gills, domed cap, and a fairy sitting underneath. This multicellular fungi consists of spores and grows for twenty years on birch trees in northern latitudes. The blackish outside reminds me of charred wood. Beneath the blackish crust (called the sclerotium) is a rusty orange/brown interior resembling a wine cork but as hard as the wood on which it grows when dried.

Photo credit: Daryl Halseth

Photo credit: Daryl Halseth

Obviously, Chaga doesn’t grow here in our Georgia climate. This doesn’t mean we can’t tap into its benefits down south.

Chaga and Cancer

For those who have followed our journey on this blog, you may recall that in January of 2012, my wife, Dirt Road Girl, was diagnosed with stage-4 cancer. The chemo and radiation treatments almost killed her. The side effects of the aggressive drugs have wreaked havoc on her body.

Don’t get me wrong, we are so thankful we have the chance to spoil our three grandsons together! Her last scan (December 2015) showed no growth! But it’s all the side effects of her daily chemo pill that we hate. During our fight to beat this disease, we’ve sought alternative methods to restore her health. Our latest research points to the potential anti-cancer benefits of this wild mushroom.

Below are few of the things we’ve discovered about Chaga and cancer. This information is shared with you for educational purposes only. It is not meant to be medical advice. We are not medical professionals. Do your own due diligence and research. We’re just two individuals on a quest to live life and regain health.

Health and Healing Claims of Chaga

We’ve just begun using Chaga so our personal results are limited. My research of scientific studies and anecdotal evidence points us to the following health benefits…

  • Natural energy booster and hunger suppressant
  • Melanin found in the black crust (sclerotium) is high in antioxidants
  • Anti-bacterial
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Anti-cancer due to phyto-sterols
  • Aids in the side effects of chemo/radiation treatments without harming healthy cells
  • Anti-viral
  • Anti-parasitic (rid intestinal parasites)
  • Anti-allergic
  • Antioxidant properties
  • Topical treatment for skin conditions (psoriasis, eczema, dermatitis, etc.)
  • Blood sugar regulator
  • Liver protection and detox of the body
  • Immune system enhancer and modulator (claims to help with auto-immune diseases such as lupus and psoriasis)
  • Increased T-cell activity due to beta glucans present in the mushroom

Technical Jargon

Without getting too technical, antioxidant foods are measured in what the USDA calls Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity, or ORAC scale. The higher the ORAC score, the more antioxidants are present.

Then the SOD acronym pops up – Superoxide Dismutase. Our bodies produce this enzyme to counteract harmful oxidation in cells. Chaga extract is said to stimulate the production of SOD.

Studies show Chaga to be high in ORAC and SOD.

Extraction Methods

To get to the good stuff in Chaga, the most common method is hot water extraction. Advice on this process varies. Some avid tea drinkers advise to not heat Chaga above 125º F for fear of destroying its beneficial properties. Others boil the conks for several minutes or simply steep as one would any tea.

Chaga Mushroom- Tinder Fungus and Pharmacy Growing on a Tree - TheSurvivalSherpa.com

Chaga tea at camp. Thanks Daryl and Kristina!

 

Joel Bragg, a Pathfinder buddy, sent me several pieces of Chaga in a trade. I simply boil a few until the water turns a dark color, usually about 5-10 minutes. Strain and drink. I use the same pieces over and over until the tea isn’t dark. Don’t discard used Chaga. Use the tincture recipe below to extract non-water soluble goodness. Once all the medicinal components have been extracted, Chaga can be burned like incense. I’ve not seen any studies of the usefulness of burning Chaga but it has a pleasant smell to me. It makes a great addition to your fire kit, as well.

Chaga Mushroom- Tinder Fungus and Pharmacy Growing on a Tree - TheSurvivalSherpa.com

Photo taken by Bill Reese of Instinct Survivalist on our recent camping trip to Raven Cliffs. Enjoying a cup of chaga tea.

 

I’ve also ground Chaga chunks into a fine powder with our VitaMix. It’s a dusty affair. Steep a spoon of powder in hot water and strain through a filter. DRG wants to try the crock pot method for larger batches of tea extract.

I enjoy my Chaga tea straight (no additives). I add coconut oil occasionally, not for flavor, but for the added health benefits. DRG flavors her tea with a few spices – cardamon, cinnamon, and/or ginger.

 

Hot water doesn’t extract all the good stuff, though. Other bioactive ingredients are non-water soluble and accessible through alcohol extraction. Add three table spoons of ground Chaga to one pint of vodka. After two weeks in a cool, dark place, filter the tincture and take 2-3 table spoons 3-6 times daily. This recipe and others can be found here.

A combination of both water and alcohol extraction can be used for full benefit.

Where to Buy/Find Chaga

As mentioned previously, I’ve collected a good supply from a few of my bushcraft buddies. Thanks guys! If you can’t harvest wild Chaga, ordering is an option. Not all Chaga is created equal. There’s cultivated versions, lab-grown, and wild Chaga. You want conks that naturally grow on birch trees.

If you live in an area like me, there are no Chaga mushrooms growing in my Georgia forests. I don’t always buy Chaga, but when I do, I buy from Dragon Fire Tinderbox…

I highly recommend this small, family owned and operated business. I know and trust Dragon Fire Tinderbox. My review of their tinder material is here. Daryl and Kristina also hand-harvest Chaga using ethical practices and respect for the wilderness.

Being relatively new to the medicinal benefits of Chaga fungus, Daryl has been very helpful in pointing me to research. He even has a Facebook group dedicated to the benefits of Chaga.

Chaga and Fire

Chaga’s ability to ignite from a relatively weak spark off flint and steel is how it earned the name True Tinder Fungus. I’ve experimented with other tinder fungi and have only achieved flint and steel ignition on Chaga. You must create surface area by scrapping or shaving the inner portion into a pile in order to catch the spark.

IMG_4507

Before modern ignition sources like lighters and matches, a smoldering chunk of tinder fungus allowed one to carry fire over distance. Dried tinder fungi are great coal extenders and hearth boards when practicing primitive with your bow or hand drill.

Research Sources:

Do your own research before taking natural supplements. I plan to keep everyone updated on our Chaga journey. If you’ve had experience with Chaga, good or bad, we’d love to hear from you.

Keep Doing the Stuff of Self-Reliance,

Todd

P.S. – You can also keep up with the Stuff we’re Doing on TwitterPinterestGoogle +, YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook… and over at the Doing the Stuff Network.

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Could Leaving the U.S be the Ultimate Prep — and Do You Have What it Takes?

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leaving the USI have to admit, this is a difficult topic to bring up because, to many people, it veers way too close to betraying the country of our birth. However, I’ve been thinking about this a lot. If I truly believe that utter chaos is coming to America in the form of an economic collapse, EMP, or some other horrific event, then why stay here? Why not find a small, obscure country and hole up for a while, thus protecting my family and myself?

I began researching this subject a few years ago when a reader contacted me and told me about her move to Chile. She and her husband had decided to make the move after much research. They were loving the clean air, pure food, friendly people, and a change in their lifestyle.

I was intrigued. Hmmm…could leaving the U.S. entirely trump food storage, a bug out location, and all the other traditional preps? I began to research residency requirements of various countries.

My first discovery was a shocker. Very few countries want me! They don’t want me, my husband, my family, my parents. Rules for residency can be quite strict, sometimes even requiring the deposit of a large sum of money into one of the nation’s banks. Some countries are quite frank about preventing people like me from coming into their country. To do so, I need to provide:

  1. Proof of health insurance
  2. Proof of regular income
  3. Background check
  4. Health report from a doctor for each family member
  5. Financial information
  6. Birth and marriage certificates
  7. Possibly proof you can speak the language of this country

Additionally, there are strict rules regarding time in country and visa requirements.

This is a stark and startling contrast to the mass human migration we’ve seen in the past couple of years. If citizens of Central America, Mexico, and nearly every other country can walk past our southern border without any of the above, including personal identification, then why do other countries make it so difficult, and, more importantly, where can a law-abiding, hard working American citizen go when they decide to relocate?

(To be fair, the U.S. does have a lengthy process for legal immigration, and it’s quite a difficult path, thus the popularity of illegal immigration.)

Plenty of questions, no easy answers

At one time I thought my family could just pick a country and move there. The entire world was our oyster! Where should we go? Australia? New Zealand? England? Somewhere in Europe? Obviously, we would want to go where English was spoken and where we could quickly blend in.

Well, it didn’t take long to find out that if I’m over 35, Australia doesn’t want me. Other countries may let us visit for a time, but do not allow long-term or permanent residency. The countries that are left are an odd mix:

  1. Chile
  2. Panama
  3. Costa Rica
  4. Hungary
  5. Ireland (ancestry)
  6. Israel (If you’re Jewish or have Jewish heritage.)
  7. Belgium

There are a few more, but the pickin’s are slim when it comes to finding a country that has less restrictive residency requirements.

It boils down to having money, ancestry, time, and/or flexibility. $100,000 will buy a passport and citizenship in Dominica. Ancestors from Hungary, going back 4 generations, can smooth the way for residency in Hungary and Hungarian citizenship. Convert to Judaism and you may become an Israeli citizen, complete with mandatory military service.

If you’re about to have a baby, or are planning one, Brazil is one of only a handful of countries that provides citizenship to every baby born within its borders. Permanent residency can be obtained in Chile, after living there continuously for five years.

As you can see, there is no simple path to residency or, if you choose, citizenship. And then there’s the nightmare of dealing with bureaucrats, long distance phone calls, websites and applications in a foreign language, and, in many cases, visits to a consulate or embassy that could be hundreds of miles away.

Gaining residency in another country is possible. Just not as easy as one would think.

More complications and considerations

If you are able to find a country that will allow temporary residence, and possible permanent residency, then there are tax considerations. The United States is one of only two countries that taxes its citizens no matter where they live and regardless of how long the have been out of the country. I’ve read horror stories of people whose families left the United States when they were very young children, grew up elsewhere, and the were taxed by the U.S. on the income they had earned in that country. Yep, the U.S. and Eritrea share this same tax policy. The only 2 countries in the world.

Something to consider, when researching an expat destination and residency, is what the taxation policy is of your country of choice. Some countries, such as Hungary, has a double taxation policy, which allows them to collect taxes from non-resident citizens — but then there are loopholes and exceptions!

The U.S. is dead serious about collecting taxes from expats. Not sure if it’s out of greed, entertainment for the I.R.S., or stems from a desire to punish anyone leaving the country, but stories like this one are far more common than you might think:

I just found out that despite my income earned and taxed abroad being a) below the foreign income exclusion limit, and b) covered by a bilateral tax treaty between the country where I have lived for the past 49 years, the IRS wants to tax it fully, leaving me with an effective tax rate of 61% from now on.

One of the reasons is that many of the required subforms, e.g. W-2, do not exist in this country (Finland). I sent them my Finnish tax decision along with a translation. They accepted the amount of my earnings, but gave me no credit for the local national tax paid. They have given me three weeks to refile, but the information that they want, such as Social Security and Obamacare payments, doesn’t exist here or is irrelevant to my situation. I am a pensioner whose sole source of income is a Finnish state pension, and I am fully covered by the Finnish health care system. Having worked only in Finland, I never paid into and am ineligible for Social Security and cannot, of course, sign up for Obamacare. They are threatening with draconian fines and seizure of assets so as to leave me destitute for the rest of my life.

So, you may find the ideal country that welcomes you with open arms. You can learn the language and start a new life, but no matter how far you go, the I.R.S. will track you down and demand their pound of flesh.

Oh, and there’s a sweet little federal law, FATCA (Federal Account Tax Compliance Act) that requires foreign banks to reveal the identity of Americans with accounts over $50,000. They have to had over names, addresses, account balance, account numbers and Social Security or other U.S. identification numbers. Banks who do not comply are punished, by the United States, with a withholding tax of 30% on payments from U.S. banks. Naturally, this has caused many foreign banks to refuse Americans wishing to open accounts, and who can blame them?

The Treasury Department has been unable to cite any constitutional, statutory, or regulatory authority which allows it to compel foreign institutions to collect and share the financial information of U.S. citizens.

Americans living abroad must file an annual report, the FBAR (Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts Report), by June 30, of each year, if they have a foreign account holding more than $10,000. Failure to file that report, and ignorance of the law is no excuse, can result in fines up to $500,000 and up to 10 years in prison!! Spreading that money between multiple banks may help you disguise the sum total for a while, but not forever. And, $10,000 is a pathetically small amount of money, considering the fact that the I.R.S. collected over $1 trillion in fiscal year 2015 (October, 2014 through January, 2015).

It looks like FATCA, FBAR, and these draconian policies are here to stay, forever, so it’s just one more consideration if you’re planning on leaving the U.S.

By the way, a little civics lesson here. FATCA was included in a quietly passed jobs bill. If a Senator or Representative would have voted against this bill, they would have been excoriated by the opposing party for voting against a “jobs bill”. The next time a politician you favor is accused for voting against a bill that seems altruistic, dig a little deeper to find out what else, exactly, was in that bill.

Loopholes & confusion

Countries that have lenient ancestry requirements still don’t make it easy for applicants. Take Ireland, for example. You may be granted permanent residency and citizenship:

SovereignMan.com

SovereignMan.com

A couple of years ago I was on New Zealand’s website, looking for information about residency and came away with a massive headache. A few forms on the Switzerland website were in German only.

To complicate matters (is that even possible?), these laws can change quickly and without notice. A country friendly to American expats could become hostile with just the election of a new president.

Lessons learned?

  1. Research, research, research!
  2. Simplify your lifestyle now and prepare to live on less money and with fewer belongings.
  3. Have your vital documents at the ready.
  4. Read the fine print.
  5. Take your time.
  6. Be patient.

Oh, be wary of professional expat advisers. I’ve come across a few that paint an alluring picture of the country and people but after more research, I discovered they were more interested in selling their services than in providing accurate info.

Why leave?

I answer that question and provide several historical examples of relocating — in fact, it’s highly likely your own ancestors relocated and that’s how you ended up an American citizen!

Are you ready to relocate?

After researching, studying, praying, and discussing a relocation, you’ve decided to take the plunge. But! Have you considered whether or not you are a good candidate for this major step?

One of the most critical factors in transitioning to a new location, whether foreign or domestic, is your ability to adapt to new situations. Is your basic temperament and personality one that is flexible? Do you enjoy new experiences and meeting  new people? When faced with an abrupt change in your life, do you adapt easily or do you resist the change? I know one woman who still, after several years, insists that she’s still married in spite of the fact that her husband divorced her and married someone else!

A move to another country is going to plunge you and your family into a world in which most everything is different and new:

  • Language
  • Customs
  • Food
  • Holidays
  • Housing
  • Attitudes
  • Entertainment
  • Technology accessibility
  • Laws
  • Climate

Some personality types adjust to these changes more easily. Others will require more time.

Along with adaptability are expectations. How realistic are your expectations for this move? Are you expecting a smooth and seamless transition? Thorough research, talking with other expats, and then actually visiting and spending time in the country or area of your choice will help keep your expectations well grounded.

Then there are the practical issues of age, health, time, and money. There’s no perfect age for moving out of the country. Younger people are likely in better health but with fewer career skills and less saved money. Young couples have each other to depend on but having younger children will make this quite difficult.

Imagine, or remember, taking all the kids to Target or the grocery store. That’s no easy task! Now, imagine taking them to a foreign country where English isn’t spoken and trying to find a place to live, decipher even the most basic written information, stand in line in various bureaucratic offices to get one license or document or another, and adapt to a completely different lifestyle. No easy task no matter how young and fit you are!

The process will be easier if your kids are older but then, at the high school age, they often don’t want to leave their friends, sports, and other activities. How easy will it be for them to develop new friendships in this new location and how will they go to college, in particular, if they aren’t fluent in the language? Those with grown kids and grandkids face the challenge of moving away and, possibly, never again being a part of their lives. As we age, health issues ultimately become a fact of life.

The health of each family member may impact whether or not a country allows residency. For example, Australia has been known to prevent families with autistic kids from coming into their country, even when the parents have viable, well-paying jobs waiting for them. And, if there are health issues of any kind, will you be able to find the doctors and care necessary in this new location and how will you pay for those services? Some countries, upon granting residency, require a fee for their national health insurance. Fair enough.

Now, the issue of money. Bottom line: the more you have, the easier it will be to find a country willing to grant residency quickly and the easier it will be to settle into a comfortable lifestyle. No surprises there.

But expenses add up even for the non-millionaires among us. It’s highly recommended that you visit the country, or area of the U.S., first before taking the plunge. That’s going to require travel expenses and time off from work. One family I know of had their hearts settled on Belize. They did the research, had contacts in the country, visited once, and on the second visit, realized the country was not for them at all, but by then, they had sunk a few thousand dollars into the venture.

The moving process can be quite expensive. What do you take with you? If it’s just the clothes on your back and whatever a suitcase or two can hold, that’s no problem. Most of us, though, will want to take other possessions. Yes, you can sell it all, but how expensive will it be to replace those items once you relocate and will the quality be what you want? A shipping container costs money and may take several weeks to arrive at the dock of your new country. In the meantime, you may have to live in a hotel or a furnished apartment.

In addition to the expenses of checking out different locations and the moving process is the financial requirements of just about every country I know of. Examples:

  • Costa Rica requires a deposit of $60,000 in a Costa Rican bank for those in the “rentista” category. You are paid $2500 per month out of that balance for 24 months and this becomes your monthly income, at least in part.
  • Antigua has an “economic citizenship” program that requires a government donation of $250,000, plus another $50,000 per family member.
  • Belgium requires that you have a salary of at least € 50,000 per year.
  • Hungary has a residency bond program. Deposit a little over $300,000 in one of their banks and you’ll have to pay another $60,000 as a processing and administration fee.

All countries will have fees for visas and whatever other bureaucratic fees they choose to apply. If the paperwork is not in English, that’s a hurdle to overcome and many countries require a face-to-face interview. In their language.

So what if you have little to no money? Is becoming an ex-pat out of the question? Not at all. In fact, if you’re adventurous, you may even prefer the much simpler lifestyle it brings. Rather than being barricaded in a luxurious neighborhood behind guarded gates, you can live among the locals, shop where they shop, hang out where they hang out, and learn the language and customs very quickly. This is pretty much how I lived when I traveled for months at a time and ended up living in both Germany and Israel.

In this video, I explain a few more considerations before you jump into the decision to leave the U.S.

Emotional ties

I’d be remiss if I didn’t bring up the issue of deep, emotional ties to your home country and the loved ones you’ll leave behind. It’s interesting to see who can do this easily, without looking back, and who can’t. It’s not a matter of being callous and without emotional attachments, as these people wholeheartedly love the family members they leave behind. In some cases, they plan to help move them to their new location as soon as possible.

Deeply felt ties to America aren’t quite as easily cut as many think. “America” isn’t just a land mass but a way of thinking and how you view the rest of the world. And, it works the other way, too. Locals in other countries will have a different worldview and cultural norms. One article asks, “Does everyone in Chile lie?” You’ll miss living in a country where everyone pretty much has the same social norms.

You’re going to miss favorite foods and restaurants and ease of living. You’ll miss your favorite brands of clothing, your church, holidays spent with friends and family, and Amazon Prime! Depending on where you move, you will probably have to leave pets behind.

On their own, these may not seem like much, but together, combined with the foreign-ness of a different country may make assimilation far more difficult than you’d ever imagined, which circles back to my original question: How adaptable are you?

Is it even worth the bother?

Based on the huge number of hurdles and hassles, is it even worth considering leaving the U.S.? Well, that depends on your reasons for leaving. One family who chose to relocate to Chile did so because they believe a nuclear war is coming, it will mostly affect the northern hemisphere and they don’t care to suffer the long-term consequences. (Both have backgrounds as scientists in the nuclear energy field.) Based on their last email, they are still very happy with their choice.

If you’re convinced beyond the shadow of a doubt that war is coming to the U.S., or an EMP, then why would you stay here and subject your family to the aftermath? Some believe that God’s judgment is coming on America — why not escape that, if possible?

My point is that the hassles and hard work of leaving will be worth the effort, or not, depending on your motivation. Once you make the move, remember that it’s not necessarily forever — if that thought helps get you through the rough patches.

A reader on Facebook wrote, “We tried it out in Panama for 2 years. I did not like it at all. I wanted to kiss the ground when we arrived back in the US a year ago. We made a ton of expat friends (and some local friends). But it wasn’t for me. You have to adjust to a very different way of life. I was unable to adjust. For those who are interested in learning more about Panama, there is a group, ExPats in Panama, that my friend admins. There are tons of people who’d love to talk to you about it.

We saved a ton of money by living there. We work remotely for a company (get a paycheck, even though the company was our own company), and so we were able to claim the foreign earned income tax credit for 2 years. It is fairly easy to become a resident of Panama, but I don’t know why you’d want to become a citizen.  If you lived like the locals live, you could easily live on $1,000/mo. If you want to live the same lifestyle in the US, then it would be more toward $3,000/mo as reasonable.”

Could you ever leave the U.S. for good? What is your motivation to leave, or stay?

Learn more

I’ve learned a lot from these resources:

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Indoor gardening!

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Indoor gardening!
Brett Bauma “Makers on Acres

Indoor gardeningOn this episode of the Makers On Acres Tech, Build and Grow show we are talking indoor grow lights and indoor gardening!

Many of us may not be able to build a greenhouse right away, so what is our other option for year around gardening? Growing indoors! Growing and gardening indoors is fun and pretty simple once you get the right pieces in place. I have grown indoors for many years and almost enjoy it more than growing outdoors because I can interact with my plants on a consistent basis without exiting the home.

1-23-16 download (5)Growing and gardening indoors is not without its challenges, but it can be a fun experience. Many of the products on the market now make indoor gardening so much easier and more affordable than with previous technologies. One main concern with indoor gardening is light! With the advances over the last few years in the field of LED’s, lighting is not only affordable but effective. We will talk extensively on lighting and how to approach your buying decisions as well.

1-23-16 download (6)Fresh produce can be grown in a spare room, basement or kitchen. How much you harvest will all depend on how far you want to take your system and how much space you are willing to dedicate to it. If you are ready for some fresh greens, and more, year around without having to build a greenhouse, then you need to listen to this show!
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