Reusing Food Waste: The Perks, Tips, and Tricks

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You’ve been eating healthfully and sustainably as an apartment homesteader, and it’s been kind to your budget. But when most of the waste you produce is in the form of food scraps, you need to be reusing food waste rather than disposing of those food bits.

The first way that comes to mind for most people is to turn food waste into compost for your garden. Small-space composting can be an easy and cost-effective way to use your food waste.

But beyond composting, did you know you can both regrow plants from your scraps (buy once, grow forever) and eat those scraps in crafty recipes?

Check out my favorite tips and recipes below—along with a list of even more clever ways to put your food waste to good use.

Composting in Your Apartment

Everyone can compost, even in the small space of the apartment homestead.

You can use a five-gallon bucket with a lid—easily attained at any hardware store—or a regular plastic garbage bin with a lid.

Don’t let the “lack of space” excuse keep you from composting your food waste to help feed your future garden. There are cheap and easy compost containers that will fit under your kitchen sink or in a closet, or that you can make decorative to help inspire other apartment homesteaders to start their own sustainability journey.

If you’re worried about the usual culprits (bugs, using it quickly enough, and the obvious lack of space) that make composting in your apartment homestead difficult, check out this blog on The Grow Network: 5 Cheap and Easy Solutions For Small-Space Composting.

Regrow From Scraps

If composting isn’t your thing just yet, why not start a whole garden of vegetables and fruit from your organic produce scraps?

From herbs and onions to leafy greens and lemon trees, you can regrow the produce you eat regularly with results that are both amazing for your homesteading prowess and kind to your homestead budget.

Basil

One of my favorite herbs to regrow is basil. I love fresh basil. I add it to Italian dishes or infuse water with it and fresh lemon slices.

You can regrow basil by simply stripping the leaves, leaving only a small stem. Place the basil in a jar of water with the stem submerged, and set it in a sunny but cool area in your apartment homestead. Change the water every other day and plant in a four-inch pot when the stems grow to approximately two inches in length.

Peppers

Another easy plant to regrow is peppers. Simply save the seeds from a pepper you love and replant in a pot. Place the pot in a sunny area, and you’ll enjoy peppers (and hopefully fresh salsa!) again and again.

Tomatoes

You can also save your tomato seeds. Rinse them and allow to dry, then plant them in a soil-filled pot. If you have a garden box, transfer your tomato plants there once the sprouts are a few inches tall. Otherwise, keep them potted and enjoy fresh tomatoes from your patio garden.

Here are some other things you can regrow from food scraps in your apartment homestead:

  • Avocado
  • Bok Choy
  • Cabbage
  • Carrot Greens
  • Celery
  • Cilantro
  • Garlic Sprouts
  • Ginger
  • Green Onions
  • Leeks
  • Scallions
  • Lemongrass
  • Mushrooms
  • Onions
  • Potatoes
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Romaine Lettuce
  • Fennel

Reusing Food Waste in the Kitchen: Recipes Using ‘Throwaway’ Scraps

There are so many ways to eat the kitchen scraps you would normally throw away! Just rethink “scraps” into more food! Check out these recipes for a few ideas.

Broth

Use your celery tops, onion skins, carrot peels, and other veggies to make vegetable broth. Add all vegetables to a large pot, add enough water to completely cover everything, bring to a boil, and let simmer for six to eight hours. Strain and store broth in the fridge.

Almond Flour

Do you make your own almond milk? Grind up the leftover almonds and toast/dry in your oven to make almond flour. Use almond flour to make grain-free muffins, breads, or other baked goods.

One of my favorite recipes using almond flour is Almond Flour Cinnamon Rolls—they’re also gluten free (which means you can kick the nasty pesticide-heavy wheat out of your diet and still enjoy your sweets):

Almond Flour Cinnamon Rolls

2 cups almond flour
4 Tbsp. ground flax seed
1/2 Tbsp. baking soda
1 Tbsp. baking powder
1/8 tsp. sea salt
2 eggs
1 Tbsp. unsweetened coconut milk
2 Tbsp. unsweetened applesauce
1 Tbsp. honey (in dough); 1/4 cup honey (in filling)
1 tsp. cinnamon (in dough); 2 Tbsp. cinnamon (in filling)

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Mix together almond flour, ground flax seed, baking soda, baking powder, and sea salt. Mix in eggs and coconut milk. Then, mix in applesauce, 1 Tbsp. honey, and 1 tsp. cinnamon.

Form dough into a ball, cover, and chill in the fridge for 20 minutes.

Lay a piece of wax paper down on the counter and grease with olive oil. Place the dough onto the wax paper, and roll out the dough into a thin circle.

Drizzle honey over the dough and shake the rest of the cinnamon over the top.

Cut dough into 2-inch strips. Using your knife (the dough will be sticky), roll each strip up and place in a baking pan.

Bake for around 25 minutes or until rolls are golden brown.

Potato Skins

You can turn potato skins you’d normally throw away into a salty snack you’ll crave.

Potato Skin Chips

Preheat oven to 400°F.

Toss leftover potato peels with olive oil and the seasonings you like.

Place on a baking sheet and roast for 15–20 minutes, stirring halfway through.

Sprinkle with cheese and scallions or green onions.

Apple Peels

If you make your own apple sauce, you probably have apple peels for days. The following recipe offers a perfect way to use them up:

Apple Honey Tea

The peels from 6 apples
3–4 cups water
1/2 tsp. cinnamon or 1 cinnamon stick
1 Tbsp. honey
1 Tbsp. lemon juice

Place apple peels in a sauce pan, cover with water, and add lemon juice and cinnamon. Boil for 10–15 minutes. When the liquid has become apple-colored, strain out the apple peels, add honey, and serve.

Kale Stems

Kale stems can be too tough to eat raw.

Dry the stems and grind them into Super Green Kale Powder to add to shakes or salads.

Get Clever With Your Food Scraps

Not into the food scrap recipes? Here are a bunch of other ways to use your food scraps. Get creative!

  • Infuse liquor with citrus peels for a yummy adult beverage.
  • Sharpen the blades of your garbage disposal by running eggshells through it.
  • Add crushed eggshells to your garden soil to give it a calcium boost.
  • Run citrus peels through the garbage disposal to get rid of nasty odors.
  • Use carrot peels to make carrot oil—an awesome addition to your natural, chemical-free beauty routine.
  • Add citrus peels to white vinegar to use in cleaning. Infuse the vinegar with the citrus peels by letting them sit together for two weeks before straining the peels and transferring the citrusy vinegar to a spray bottle.
  • Make citrus air fresheners.
  • Use banana peels to shine your shoes.
  • Use spent coffee grounds in your garden as pest repellent, fertilizer, or an ingredient in compost.
  • You can also use your coffee grounds to help absorb food odors in the fridge. Put old grounds in a container and place it in the fridge to get rid of musty food smells.
  • Coffee grounds can even be used to exfoliate and rejuvenate your skin!

Whichever ways you choose to use rather than toss your food “waste,” remember that the choice to go that extra step is a leaping bound on your journey toward personal sustainability in your apartment homestead.

(And when you’re ready to take another step and really say “goodbye” to unsustainable living, you’ll want to check out the next post in the Apartment Homesteader series, on growing your own medicine—or being your own Apartment Apothecary! Stay tuned!)

 

References

http://thegrownetwork.com/small-space-composting/
https://foodrevolution.org/blog/reduce-food-waste-regrow-from-scraps/
https://www.davidwolfe.com/stop-trashing-your-scraps-16-produce-items-to-re-grow-at-home/
https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/edible/vegetables/potato/container-potatoes.htm
http://undressedskeleton.tumblr.com/post/57820632507
http://www.care2.com/greenliving/ways-to-reuse-food-scraps.html
https://www.thekitchn.com/heres-why-you-should-never-throw-out-potato-peelings-tips-from-the-kitchn-212565
http://www.thekitchn.com/22-budget-friendly-recipes-that-will-use-up-your-kitchen-scraps-230090
http://joyinmykitchen.blogspot.com/2009/10/apple-honey-tea.html#.Wez9KpOnEfF
http://www.besthealthmag.ca/best-you/green-living/7-healthy-ways-to-use-food-scraps/
http://www.naturallivingideas.com/14-genius-ways-recycle-used-coffee-grounds/
http://www.naturallivingideas.com/35-genius-ways-to-use-up-food-scraps/
http://dontwastethecrumbs.com/2015/07/13-ways-use-food-scraps/

The post Reusing Food Waste: The Perks, Tips, and Tricks appeared first on The Grow Network.

Alaskans Urged To Prep For North Korean Attack; Would Have 20 Minutes To React

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Alaskans Urged To Prep For North Korean Attack; Would Have 20 Minutes To React

The state of Alaska has no plans to evacuate citizens in the event of a North Korean nuclear attack. Instead, residents are being told to stay in place and stockpile food, water, flashlights and radios.

“Really the recommendation for people during a nuclear attack is to shelter in place and find some type of secure location that will protect them from that blast,” state official Jeremy Zidek said, according to Britain’s Daily Mirror. “What we’re recommending people do is the same thing that they would do for any other type of disaster preparedness.

It’s Backup Electrical Power In A Convenient, Portable Briefcase!

“That is: Have a family emergency plan so that they can get in touch with their families quickly, and have an emergency supply of food, water and first aid.

“So with a mass evacuation – if people leave their homes, schools and businesses to try to get out of the area, we may be putting more people at risk,” he added.

Anchorage is 1,000 miles closer to North Korea than Honolulu, and both are within range of the ICBMs tested this year by the rogue nation. Zidek estimated that it would take about 20 minutes for a North Korean missile to reach his state.

“Perhaps there would be some type of attack on those military facilities to try to hinder our ability to react to any missile launches,” Zidek said.

Alaska is home to a number of military installations including Fort Greeley, Fort Wainwright, and Nelson Air Force Base.

What is your reaction? Share it in the section below:

Roasted Possum

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Roasted Possum

Remove as much hair and fat as possible from the animal after he is skinned. Also, they can be soaked in salt water or vinegar water in the cellar overnight before cooking, or if you are fortunate enough to have an icebox, that will work too. You can simmer him for a spell in water with salt and pepper before cooking. Simmer until meat begins to become tender.

Since the meat does have a “different” flavor, you may wish to serve it with sauerkraut, sweet-sour red cabbage, radishes, barbecue sauce, A-1 Steak Sauce, Tabasco Sauce, etc. Possum don’t taste nothin’ like chicken.

1 skinned and dressed possum cut-up
3 cups sliced carrots
6 cups onions, quartered
6 cups potatoes, quartered
1 clove garlic minced
1 can cream of mushroom or celery soup
1 cup flour
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
3 cups water
Salt and pepper

Note: Ramps can be substituted for onions.

Brown possum in a little grease in an ovenproof iron pot then remove pieces. Add the rest of the ingredients to the pot. Arrange possum artfully on top. Bake covered at 350 degrees F for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

The post Roasted Possum appeared first on WWW.AROUNDTHECABIN.COM.

Tips & Tricks To Protect Livestock During Winter

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Taking care of livestock and poultry during warm weather is hard enough, but when frigid weather hits, it can be downright difficult.

Yet if you know what you’re doing, your livestock can survive and even thrive during winter weather.

This week’s guests on Off The Grid Radio — Shawn and Beth Dougherty — take care of cattle, pigs, sheep, chickens and ducks throughout the year on a large farm in Ohio. They tell us the tricks they use to care for their animals when cold weather hits.

Shawn and Beth – the authors of the book, “The Independent Farmstead” (Storey) – also tell us:

  • What they feed their animals during winter.
  • How they keep the livestock’s water from freezing.
  • What they do to protect their animals when temperatures approach 0 degrees Fahrenheit.

Shawn and Beth also tell about the vegetables they grow in the garden during winter – and how they do it.

If you own livestock or poultry, then this week’s show is for you!

Alternative Infection Prevention and Treatment

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Before we get into the subject of prevention and alternative treatments of infections, I think it is necessary to say that I have no formal medical training. This information is meant to help you see what options are there during an extreme situation or for minor infections that do not require major antibiotics. This is. . . Read More

Night Vision Goggles Explained: How do they work?

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If you want to get the best pair of night vision goggles on the market, then you need to understand how they work. It might also help you decide on their advantages as compared to that of a flashlight or an infrared scope. So if you want to […]

The post Night Vision Goggles Explained: How do they work? appeared first on Preppers Survive.

A Legal Alternative to CBD Oil

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A Legal Alternative to CBD Oil CBD burst on the scene by curing seizures in young children. I remember desperate parents fleeing to Colorado to treat their children. It was an amazing story that affected even the most staunch proponent of medical marijuana. Fast forward to present day and CBD is showing up in all …

Continue reading »

The post A Legal Alternative to CBD Oil appeared first on SHTF Prepping & Homesteading Central.

Put Together a Fire Building Survival Kit

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Put Together a Fire Building Survival Kit Fire is one of those survival skills that fall into the big three. Fire, shelter and water are three things that you should address at the onset of any survival situation. You might think it’s strange that I don’t put food in there. The truth is, you can …

Continue reading »

The post Put Together a Fire Building Survival Kit appeared first on SHTF Prepping & Homesteading Central.

Developing Self Reliant Food Sources in 2018

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Developing Self Reliant Food Sources in 2018
Host: James Walton “I Am Liberty” Audio player below!

Last week I did a podcast on the fact that American was bleeding out. We are losing our personal liberty at an astounding rate. The tighter packed we are into suburban life the faster these freedoms are draining. It is my goal to set as many people as possible, myself included, on a course towards self reliance.

Continue reading Developing Self Reliant Food Sources in 2018 at Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

Face Off: Will iPhone X and Face ID Revolutionize Biometric Security?

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Face Off: Will iPhone X and Face ID Revolutionize Biometric Security? We are merely at the base of this mountain of disruptive technology that will change our lives radically over the next 20 years. It’s not a stretch to say that in 20 years the world will be nearly unrecognizable. We are seeing only the …

Continue reading »

The post Face Off: Will iPhone X and Face ID Revolutionize Biometric Security? appeared first on SHTF Prepping & Homesteading Central.

Using Barn Doors Inside – The Beauty And Function Of Interior Barn Doors!

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The beauty, function and practical uses for interior barn doors are catching on like never before! Interior barn doors bring so much more to a home design than simple, old-fashioned rustic appeal. They are perfect for sectioning off a home

The post Using Barn Doors Inside – The Beauty And Function Of Interior Barn Doors! appeared first on Old World Garden Farms.

Yeah, But You May Have to Deal with the White Stuff!

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Written by Wild Bill on The Prepper Journal.

So, on a bright clear winter day a couple who considered themselves young and athletic, decided to go nordic (cross-country) skiing, just the two of them, a spur of the moment thing. After all, they were there on vacation to ski. They did take a trail map obtained from a local source and decided on a trail that was more advanced than intermediate. The trail was clearly marked with the “blue-square”, still not an expert trail. Their first mistake – ski trails (nordic) and ski runs (alpine) are rated in comparison to the other trails and runs within the specific ski area. There is no industry or national “standard” so if one has been venturing off the grid covered in white gold say in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, their trail ratings don’t equate equally to those of say, the Taos Ski Valley of Northern New Mexico, or Summit County, Colorado . They are a general guide, but not general enough to go out without understanding the local measuring stick.

        

Their second mistake – when they left at around lunch time they dressed fashionable for the 40 degree prevailing temperature, expecting to be back about 4 hours later.

Mistake number three: Since they had arrived at their western resort the night before, with clearing skies, they did not know that it had been snowing for two-days straight and there was now a fresh new 28″ layer of what we affectionately call “Sierra Cement” – the closer it is to the freezing point, the higher the moisture level in snow, the heavier the snow. (Dry powder needs temps below 20 degrees F.) Normally not a big deal for experienced skiers, in fact we pray for just such conditions, but, in an area where trail markers can be obscured by drifting, blowing snow, this is a concern. Generally, these markers are placed every quarter of a mile, generally. Factoring in mischief, failure due to prolonged exposure, and vague in brilliant sun-reflected light.  Miss one and you better know what you are doing.

You can see where this is going…

Mistake number four: They told no one of their plans.

Mistake number 5: They took sunscreen and a bottle of water each and their cell phones with multiple GPS apps, which failed as soon as they lost their signal.

Lost, they did survive the night because they found a small warming hut that protected them from the winds, and, with their combined body heat, the 42 degree drop in temperature overnight. They were found by the Sheriff’s Mountain Rescue Team working with the National Forest service. A lot of people taken away from their normal duties.

 

So as Preppers who may get caught off the grid in the deep of winter what should we focus on? Well, the things we know that apply no matter the weather!

First: PLANS. If it isn’t a SHTF scenario let someone know. If they were in a hotel, the hotel front desk staff. Since they were in a condo, the agency they rented it through – have you ever talked to a real person at Airbnb, Flipkey, or Hometogo? So what is your fall back? Yep, local police, fire station or Park Service rangers. These last three will teach you a very valuable lesson in responsibility if you fail to notify them of your return.

 

Second: CLOTHING. As a life-long skier I love that when you ski the “locals” favorite resorts in the West such as Alta or Brighton in the Cottonwood Canyons of the Wasatch Mountains of Utah, or A-Basin or Mary Jane, in the Rocky’s west of Denver, you see so many people dressed more in “army surplus” than you do in $3,000 Bogner ski wear they bought at Neiman Marcus. They live there, they know how to dress (and save money). If you have to be trendy get a fancy backpack and bring your uglies that keep you alive if vanity is THAT important to you. AND stuff your survival kit in there to show you have a shred of common sense. Understand fabrics.

Understand cotton – light, comfortable, flammable, useless as insulation when wet,  breaths well when dry, smolders when burned for a signal fire, loses any sprayed on “waterproofing” quickly, great for cleaning equipment.

Understand Wool – good insulation wet or dry, makes you crazy from the itching when in direct contact with your skin, shrinks, retains moisture so well that when it gets wet it gets heavy, dries out, durable.

Understand Silk – Insulates and breaths well, hollow fibers do not trap perspiration when directly on the skin, does not itch, GREAT for undergarments that wear well and insulate, expensive to buy, good layering qualities, expensive to dry clean.

Understand Polypropylene – synthetic, insulates wet or dry, breathes well, burns and melts onto you skin, dries quickly, retains body odors, durable.

Understand Gore-Tex – A branded synthetic, excellent protection from wind, takes forever to dry, very durable.

Understand Spandex – form fitting, excellent at pulling perspiration from your skin, zero protection from cold or heat, should be illegal for anyone over 35, no matter their body type.

Understand Nylon – excellent wind protection, excellent moisture protection, zero ability to breath, melts on your skin when burned.

Moving on, what should NEVER be left behind when out in the snow: Sunglasses, goggles, ear muffs, a bandanna, hat, and gaiters – nylon sleeves that snap over boots and the calf, YOUR survival kit which contains fire starter, a knife, a compass, a whistle, signaling mirror, a thermal/solar blanket, tarp, a few energy bars, flashlight, your cell phone for fun and on and on.

Extra socks are a must, a second pair of gloves – an item easily lost, a wool cap – ruins your “do” but saves your life.

What do you tell someone before you go? Who is going, when are you going, where you are going, when you plan to return. Use “Italian minutes” as opposed to “German minutes” to account for a slightly delayed start, some “stop and soak it in” time, a planned rest stop. Be realistic, not foolish.

What else do you take? A GPS transponder or Avalanche beacon – NEVER go out and play in the snow without one! One that you have tested, know how to use and that has fresh batteries (or charge) and replacement batteries. I have one on me when I am just skiing within a resorts boundaries as there are so many places where a missed turn can put you in an instant world of hurt.

A lot of articles on prepping cover the off grid but seem to focus on warm days, cool or cold nights, and endless viability. Nice but not always the reality in winter where it snows. Snow camping and survival are a whole different animal in and of themselves. The cold and the moisture CAN kill you, the zero viability can stop you dead in your tracks. Skiing once at Whistler (Blackcomb) in British Columbia I took the dip into Glacier Bowl and not 20 meters down the steep the whole world went opaque. I could see NOTHING. Blast of snow/ice from an unseen storm produced the white-out. I stopped. I had to as there are trees and great big unpleasant rocks and other skiers. It took more than 2 minutes to break, with me listening for that clown that just dropped in and now can’t see me, or anything else. Not to be confused with snow-blindness which is from the glare off snow and ice, this is a different animal.

The mountains, a tempting destination if the WAWKI goes away, but, like fabrics it brings pluses (game, forests, snow and snow melt (water)), and minuses (your A-game for conserving heat, finding shelter, difficulty in movement and concealment.) Stay frosty!

 

 

The post Yeah, But You May Have to Deal with the White Stuff! appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

Yeah, But You May Have to Deal with the White Stuff!

Click here to view the original post.

Written by Wild Bill on The Prepper Journal.

So, on a bright clear winter day a couple who considered themselves young and athletic, decided to go nordic (cross-country) skiing, just the two of them, a spur of the moment thing. After all, they were there on vacation to ski. They did take a trail map obtained from a local source and decided on a trail that was more advanced than intermediate. The trail was clearly marked with the “blue-square”, still not an expert trail. Their first mistake – ski trails (nordic) and ski runs (alpine) are rated in comparison to the other trails and runs within the specific ski area. There is no industry or national “standard” so if one has been venturing off the grid covered in white gold say in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, their trail ratings don’t equate equally to those of say, the Taos Ski Valley of Northern New Mexico, or Summit County, Colorado . They are a general guide, but not general enough to go out without understanding the local measuring stick.

        

Their second mistake – when they left at around lunch time they dressed fashionable for the 40 degree prevailing temperature, expecting to be back about 4 hours later.

Mistake number three: Since they had arrived at their western resort the night before, with clearing skies, they did not know that it had been snowing for two-days straight and there was now a fresh new 28″ layer of what we affectionately call “Sierra Cement” – the closer it is to the freezing point, the higher the moisture level in snow, the heavier the snow. (Dry powder needs temps below 20 degrees F.) Normally not a big deal for experienced skiers, in fact we pray for just such conditions, but, in an area where trail markers can be obscured by drifting, blowing snow, this is a concern. Generally, these markers are placed every quarter of a mile, generally. Factoring in mischief, failure due to prolonged exposure, and vague in brilliant sun-reflected light.  Miss one and you better know what you are doing.

You can see where this is going…

Mistake number four: They told no one of their plans.

Mistake number 5: They took sunscreen and a bottle of water each and their cell phones with multiple GPS apps, which failed as soon as they lost their signal.

Lost, they did survive the night because they found a small warming hut that protected them from the winds, and, with their combined body heat, the 42 degree drop in temperature overnight. They were found by the Sheriff’s Mountain Rescue Team working with the National Forest service. A lot of people taken away from their normal duties.

 

So as Preppers who may get caught off the grid in the deep of winter what should we focus on? Well, the things we know that apply no matter the weather!

First: PLANS. If it isn’t a SHTF scenario let someone know. If they were in a hotel, the hotel front desk staff. Since they were in a condo, the agency they rented it through – have you ever talked to a real person at Airbnb, Flipkey, or Hometogo? So what is your fall back? Yep, local police, fire station or Park Service rangers. These last three will teach you a very valuable lesson in responsibility if you fail to notify them of your return.

 

Second: CLOTHING. As a life-long skier I love that when you ski the “locals” favorite resorts in the West such as Alta or Brighton in the Cottonwood Canyons of the Wasatch Mountains of Utah, or A-Basin or Mary Jane, in the Rocky’s west of Denver, you see so many people dressed more in “army surplus” than you do in $3,000 Bogner ski wear they bought at Neiman Marcus. They live there, they know how to dress (and save money). If you have to be trendy get a fancy backpack and bring your uglies that keep you alive if vanity is THAT important to you. AND stuff your survival kit in there to show you have a shred of common sense. Understand fabrics.

Understand cotton – light, comfortable, flammable, useless as insulation when wet,  breaths well when dry, smolders when burned for a signal fire, loses any sprayed on “waterproofing” quickly, great for cleaning equipment.

Understand Wool – good insulation wet or dry, makes you crazy from the itching when in direct contact with your skin, shrinks, retains moisture so well that when it gets wet it gets heavy, dries out, durable.

Understand Silk – Insulates and breaths well, hollow fibers do not trap perspiration when directly on the skin, does not itch, GREAT for undergarments that wear well and insulate, expensive to buy, good layering qualities, expensive to dry clean.

Understand Polypropylene – synthetic, insulates wet or dry, breathes well, burns and melts onto you skin, dries quickly, retains body odors, durable.

Understand Gore-Tex – A branded synthetic, excellent protection from wind, takes forever to dry, very durable.

Understand Spandex – form fitting, excellent at pulling perspiration from your skin, zero protection from cold or heat, should be illegal for anyone over 35, no matter their body type.

Understand Nylon – excellent wind protection, excellent moisture protection, zero ability to breath, melts on your skin when burned.

Moving on, what should NEVER be left behind when out in the snow: Sunglasses, goggles, ear muffs, a bandanna, hat, and gaiters – nylon sleeves that snap over boots and the calf, YOUR survival kit which contains fire starter, a knife, a compass, a whistle, signaling mirror, a thermal/solar blanket, tarp, a few energy bars, flashlight, your cell phone for fun and on and on.

Extra socks are a must, a second pair of gloves – an item easily lost, a wool cap – ruins your “do” but saves your life.

What do you tell someone before you go? Who is going, when are you going, where you are going, when you plan to return. Use “Italian minutes” as opposed to “German minutes” to account for a slightly delayed start, some “stop and soak it in” time, a planned rest stop. Be realistic, not foolish.

What else do you take? A GPS transponder or Avalanche beacon – NEVER go out and play in the snow without one! One that you have tested, know how to use and that has fresh batteries (or charge) and replacement batteries. I have one on me when I am just skiing within a resorts boundaries as there are so many places where a missed turn can put you in an instant world of hurt.

A lot of articles on prepping cover the off grid but seem to focus on warm days, cool or cold nights, and endless viability. Nice but not always the reality in winter where it snows. Snow camping and survival are a whole different animal in and of themselves. The cold and the moisture CAN kill you, the zero viability can stop you dead in your tracks. Skiing once at Whistler (Blackcomb) in British Columbia I took the dip into Glacier Bowl and not 20 meters down the steep the whole world went opaque. I could see NOTHING. Blast of snow/ice from an unseen storm produced the white-out. I stopped. I had to as there are trees and great big unpleasant rocks and other skiers. It took more than 2 minutes to break, with me listening for that clown that just dropped in and now can’t see me, or anything else. Not to be confused with snow-blindness which is from the glare off snow and ice, this is a different animal.

The mountains, a tempting destination if the WAWKI goes away, but, like fabrics it brings pluses (game, forests, snow and snow melt (water)), and minuses (your A-game for conserving heat, finding shelter, difficulty in movement and concealment.) Stay frosty!

 

 

The post Yeah, But You May Have to Deal with the White Stuff! appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

Everything You Must Know About Gun Holsters

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Gun Holsters are used to carry guns securely on your body in an accessible, concealed and comfortable manner. They vary with the body type and the firearms you use and must always be carried in a holster to prevent any accidental mishaps and protects your gun. If you are a newbie and don’t know much […]

The post Everything You Must Know About Gun Holsters appeared first on Dave’s Homestead.

Everything You Need to Know About Being a Prepper in College

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Written by Mary Walton Being a prepper means that you’re prepared for anything that could happen. Whether it’s the increase in terrorist attacks, natural disasters or any form of event that could take place at any time. However, being at home and being in college, potentially in a new place very far from your home are completely different things. So, to get you started in the world of prepping while being at college here’s everything you need to know. Food […]

The post Everything You Need to Know About Being a Prepper in College appeared first on Apartment Prepper.

How Prepared Are 20-30 Somethings?

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Following a widespread power outage resulting from a wind storm that ripped through western Washington, several news reports read as follows: “A lot of people ventured out from their own dark apartments in search of food only to find that so many of the local restaurants were closed too.” “Gone were the neon lights as blocks and blocks of Capitol Hill clubs and eateries lost power during the storm.” “One shop still had power, and the manager said hungry customers had been pouring in all night.” “I moved into a new unit and just realized my oven doesn’t work,” “I

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Survival Defense: Here’s How To Escape Handcuffs

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Anybody can buy handcuffs. It only takes a few bucks and a criminal mind to turn this simple item into a mean of terror against a person whose freedom is suddenly compromised.

Even so, rememeber that handcuffs are employed for temporary restraint. Which means that if you are left alone in handcuffs, you can escape. If you don’t know how to do it, then this article is exactly what you need.

Keep reading!

Briefly:

  • Freeing yourself from handcuffs can save lives or get you a court-appointed lawyer. Exercise sound judgement as to when to use and when not to use this skill.
  • After I wrote about restraint escape kits and how to carry them, readers requested articles about how to use restraint escape gear. This article is one of a series on how to do just that.
  • If SEALs can be captured, so can you!
  • More than anything else, executing a restraint escape takes practice.

Clearly, the decision to use this skill is very situation-dependent. As is the case with many of the survival skills, freeing yourself from handcuffs could potentially save lives, cost them or worse, so be sure you understand and carefully weigh the potential consequences before attempting to do so.

“I don’t think you should teach people to escape double-locked handcuffs because criminals only single lock them and LEO’s double lock them.”

LEO (Law Enforcement Officer)

I disagree.  The idea that less information makes people safer is a slippery slope.

Whether software, hardware, safety equipment or security equipment, it is better to expose security flaws and limitations to the average consumer, voter or shareholder so they can be corrected, making the things that protect us more effective.

It is reckless to assume that anyone who might illegally restrain you must be stupid and uneducated.

SEALs are Issued Bobby Pins

I have heard a lot of big talk and bluster from self-proclaimed death machines about how they will never be taken prisoner or walk away from a fight.

Do they impress you? Put the fear in you? Interest you? Me either … I guess death machines must bore their enemies to death.

One day, I noticed that a request for proposal for SERE kits for one of the SEAL teams included a lot of the same gear that I carry, including bobby pins. Why carry bobby pins? Because they are ubiquitous, don’t scream “restraint escape tool!”, easy to hide and easy to improvise serviceable restraint escape tools from.

In trained hands, they can shim handcuffs, pick handcuffs, act as a reach tool for handcuff keys, pick locks, tension locks, push a friction saw past tight flex cuffs or duct tape and have many more restraint escape applications.

Before you decide you are too hard or too righteous to ever possibly need to escape, consider this: If SEALs can be captured, you can too.

 

3 Second SEAL Test Will Tell You If You’ll Survive A SHTF Situation

SEALs carry tools to execute a last-ditch escape plan. What do you carry?

Anyone can Buy Handcuffs

One does not need to be a law enforcement officer to buy handcuffs. All they need is a few bucks of credit and a heartbeat.

Under the circumstances, you are wrong thinking that you’re safe!

Still some people are more prone than others to get into this kind of situations.

Who Are People with High Risk of Illegal Restraint?

Violent Crime

While many Americans think that the risk of restraint-related crime is too low to justify learning to escape, the US is only ever one congressional vote away from becoming the newest banana republic and one cyberattack, EMP, financial collapse or Black Swan away from sliding back to third world status.

Also, when assessing risk, considering the probability of occurrence, but ignoring your exposure to the risk is a recipe for disaster.

Where I live in the US, the rate of violent crime is very low, but the fact that so many people own or carry firearms helps keep it that way. In Brazil, it’s just the opposite. Home invasion and related crimes involving illegal restraint are on the rise, with groups even crossing state lines to perpetrate crimes. It can happen to you.

International Travel

Kidnapping for ransom, lighting kidnappings and politically-motivate crimes involving illegal restraint are significant risks in some parts of the world, especially for Americans. I spend months at a time in parts of Brazil and travel to other countries where illegal restraint is a significant threat, and often precedes homicide.

Journalists, Reporters, Media

With high visibility, comes elevated risk.

Sex & Stalking-related Violent Crimes

Some people just won’t take, “Hell, no!” for an answer and believe it or not, it doesn’t just happen to women.

I will never forget how a 6’4” man’s man bawled like a baby as he tried to recount the experience of explaining to his son how a group of bikers abducted him from a gas station, drove him outside of town in a van and sexually assaulted him repeatedly.

If criminals try to restrain you during a crime and transport you from a populated area, your chances of survival drop to single digits, whereas 6 in 7 victims shot with a handgun in a US city survive. You may be much better off making a run for it in this situation. Escaping your restraints may position you to fight and/or run, affording you your best shot at survival.

Military

Whether working overseas or on active duty, military personnel are high value targets for politically and religiously-motivated crimes.

International Aid Workers

Too often victims of “wrong place, wrong time.”

Celebrities

Don’t laugh, the internet has made it possible for the average person to reach a worldwide audience. It is also a dream come true for stalkers.

How Handcuffs Work

Essentially the same basic handcuff design most widely used in the USA has changed very little in over 100 years. It is so widely used that changing it would be expensive and create a huge logistical headache.

Most arrestees are cooperative, so leadership does not want to deal with said headache and does not typically value officer safety very highly. They whitewash over the fact that the standard handcuff design has security vulnerabilities with SOP, stating that standard handcuffs should be used only to secure prisoners temporarily while an officer is present.

Since departments don’t typically issue high security handcuff for situations that fall outside this rule, there are plenty of situations where officers do not have other tools at their disposal. These factors make standard handcuffs both widely used and relatively easy to escape.

Standard handcuffs have a single strand with ratchet teeth that pivots on a that bisects both arms of a double strand. The single stand interlocks with teeth on a locking bar. This feature makes handcuffs simple to apply and adjustable.

Once the single strand is closed around the wrist and its ratchet teeth engage the opposing ratchet teeth on the locking bar (normally obscured by the cheek plates), the single stand will not open. In this condition, the handcuffs are single locked.

To double lock the handcuffs, the double locking bar is engaged by depressing a recessed detent pin with a short push pin, called a stem, located on the top of the key. Once the double locking bar is engaged, the handcuffs are double locked. In this condition, the handcuffs are secure and cannot be tightened further.

Unlocking Handcuffs

To unlock standard handcuffs, simply Insert the handcuff key and turn it counter-clockwise, as this disengages the double locking bar. Turning the key clockwise and maintaining pressure disengages the teeth on the locking bar from the ratchet teeth on the single strand, enabling the single strand to open.

Caution! These techniques are best practiced with a key handy and a second responsible party nearby to aid in removal of handcuffs if necessary. If handcuffs are over-tightened for an extended period, they can cause nerve damage!

Standard Counter-picking Features

The keyway has a post protruding from its center which make it difficult to insert tools into the keyway to manipulate the locking bars, but allows handcuff keys to seat because the

To further thwart attempts to open handcuffs by picking, the double lock bar is often replaced with two thinner double locking bars so if a tool that matches the shape of a handcuff key is used to manipulate the double lock bar, but is too thin, the tool will only disengage one of the two locking bars at a time.

Methods & Tools for Defeating Handcuffs

Today, the cultural norm is to solve problems with money. Need a tool? Buy it online. To me, survival involves solving problems without money, stores or the internet. If you really want to buy a specific tool, I’m sure you can get someone to sell you on (including me).

But I strongly suggest that you start making basic restraint escape tools yourself and save your money for the more specialized tools, like a cutaway handcuff with one of the cheek plates replaced with plexiglass. They are not perfect for practice as the cheek plate is thicker than actual handcuffs, but it will enable you to manipulate the internal parts and understand how they work.

Not only will you save money making tools, but you will learn a lot and build a skill set that cannot be easily discovered taken from you.

You can make escape and entry tools from any material that is sufficiently strong and ductile, including aluminum cans, bobby pins, wiper blade, feeler gauges, street sweeper bristles, water bottles, cordage, tubing, lip protectant and any number of other bits of trash that litter areas inhabited by humans.

Keys

If handcuffed effectively from the point of view of preventing escape, the palms of your hands will be facing away from the keyways and the handcuffs double locked. This position and the fact that the handcuffs are double locked makes it very difficult for anatomically normal folks to reach the keyways and movement is further restricted if hinged or rigid handcuffs are applied.

Not all police departments use this method though. Some departments handcuff with palms together to prevent nerve damage if the suspect struggles or the handcuffs are not removed in time.

The solution is to use an extension or reach tool to extend the reach of a concealable handcuff key. I explained the pros and cons of different models of keys in a prior article.

A reach tool that I like that can be used with many key designs is the bobby pin, but any number of tools can serve the purpose. A short length of silicone tubing (like I wear on my necklace) can be useful with some models and can be employed to pad your fingers as you bend metal.

Necklace designs, keys and ways to conceal them in the articles linked in the BLUF section.

Picks

Modified Mini Binder Clip Handle

The modified mini binder clip is one of my favorite ways to open handcuffs. I carry mini binder clips as money clips for cash. I prefer to distribute cash on my person instead of preparing it for theft by gathering it in a single, easy-to-find wad. I also find it handy to separating foreign and domestic currency. Now I have plausible deniability should a loose binder clip handle be discovered on my person … it must have fallen off a clip I was using as a money clip.

If you can find binder clips of the right dimensions that’s great, you won’t need to modify them. If you can’t, the modifications are difficult to notice, especially to someone without a lens or an idea of what they are looking for.

Shorten the length of the bend of the binder clip handle that will be used as the tooth of a handcuff key to 2.80mm including the diameter of the wire. The diameter of the wire should be reduced to 0.85mm to ensure that it can pass feely between the keyhole in the cheek plate and the security pin. Modifications can easily be performed with a wire cutter and a diamond jeweler’s file, by rubbing it on a concrete or stone surface of appropriate grit or with a diamond cutoff disc for a rotary tool. The detail-oriented can even re-finish the clip to avoid detection.

To use, bend the clip open. Work the “tooth” into the keyway and use it to sweep and/or stab open the double locking bar(s) in a counter-clockwise direction and then the locking bar in a clockwise direction and … “Presto!” you just opened double locked handcuffs without a key.

Hook Pick

A medium or so hook lock pick can be used to manipulate the locking bars as with a mini binder clip handle only you will be pushing at an angle to manipulate the locking bars as opposed to sweeping. Give it a try.

Bobby Pin

Same deal basic idea. The technique can be sweeping or pushing depending on how you bent the bobby pin. Believe it or not, SERE shops online actually sell “pre-bent” bobby pins, but if you lack the wherewithal to bend a bobby pin, you aren’t realistically going to be escaping anything. Better to retreat to your safe space and trust in the mercy of captors.

Shims 

Shims are tiny, easy to conceal and can open handcuffs quickly and quietly, if the handcuffs are only single locked. Shimming will not open double locked handcuffs because the double locking bar prevents downward travel of the locking bar, which is necessary to disengage the teeth enough to wedge a shim between the two sets of teeth.

Shims can be purchased inexpensively or improvised from hair clips, bobby pins, cotter pins or similar objects. Just understand that many models currently sold will not open even standard handcuffs featuring narrow single strands and ratchet teeth, like UZI brand and some generic cuffs sold at military surplus stores without modification.

I test every new shim I see hit the market and measure them with a caliper. Most are too wide to reliably open cheap handcuffs. (Shim manufacturers take heed!) Many shims need to be modified by narrowing the width.

We are not talking huge measurements here, just a fraction of a millimeter, so a narrow shim can open handcuffs with a wider single strand just fine, but the opposite is untrue. Unfortunately, that fraction of a millimeter of extra width is the difference between a shim not working or working.

To shim handcuffs, insert the shim beneath the teeth on the single strand, where it enters the handcuff body. Wedge the shim between the single strand teeth and the locking bar teeth, maintaining constant (stabbing) pressure on the shim, pushing it in between the two sets of teeth. Maintain pressure once in place and simultaneously tighten the single strand, taking care not to over-tighten.

One ratchet click should be enough to seat the shim between the teeth! If the shim does not seat in a couple of clicks, start over and do not risk nerve damage in training! As the single strand is tightened, it forces the teeth to disengage for an instant before the locking spring slams them back shut. In this instant, the shim can be wedged between the teeth, preventing them from engaging. Once seated, the shim can then travel a couple of centimeters inside the handcuff body as the single strand is tightened and the single strand then be opened since its teeth will slide along the shim instead of engaging the teeth on the locking bar.

Slipping Handcuffs

Human anatomy varies a great deal. Some folks have wrists that are larger than their hands, flexible hands or muscular forearms. All the preceding anatomical features aid in slipping handcuffs. The higher handcuffs are applied on the forearms, the easier it is to slip them.

Flex your forearm muscles discreetly as handcuffs are applied. When your muscles are relaxed, your forearms will become thinner. Even if you are not able to slip the cuffs at this point, your range of motion should be increased.

Applying handcuffs over long sleeves or coat sleeves increases range of motion and applying a little petroleum jelly, white petrolatum, lip protectant or even butter or grease from food can act as a lubricant and aid in slipping handcuffs.

Breaking Handcuffs

Breaking the Chain

It is possible to break the chain of most models of standard handcuffs by pulling the chain taught and then twisting both wrists so that the cheek plates bind on one another, creating a fulcrum. Employ pressure at the rivets that bind the single strand to the double strands, using the strands as levers to gain sufficient mechanical advantage to snap the chain.

The downsides are that practicing this technique is on the expensive side and you will still want to remove the handcuffs.

Cutting the Single Strand

Do not cut the single strand near the rivet! If you do, the ratchet teeth may prevent the single strand from opening. Cut it closer to where the single strand enters the handcuff body. That way it can open, pivoting on the rivet.

The Secret to Restraint Escape

The secret recipe for effective restraint escape (and most other survival skills) is simple. Whichever method or tool you choose,

…more than the best instructor on the planet,

…more than raw talent or genius,

…more than sexiest or best tools,

… effective restraint escape requires practice and dogged persistence! The others may help a little, but practice and persistence mean the difference between proficiency and failure.

Avoid This Too Common Mistake

Practice. As you do, start with the models of handcuffs you are likely to need to escape from.

A huge mistake a lot of folks who live the tactical lifestyle often make is practicing with only well-maintained, high quality handcuffs they own or are issued as opposed to models of handcuffs criminals are more likely to use.

If you carry handcuffs, you should be experienced in escaping from the handcuffs you carry and carry a spare key attached to a reach tool, but a street criminal perpetrating a home invasion to get money to score drugs is more likely to use a pair of cheap army surplus store handcuffs that have been rusting behind the seat in his truck for the past 5 years than a pair of well-oiled high-end handcuffs.

Practice with both! This is how you will be able to make the smart move when your life would be on the edge!

This article has been written by Cache Valley Prepper for Survivopedia.

8 Survival Hacks Using Safety Pins

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There are a lot of items you may start reaching for when SHTF – a gun, a HAM radio, even duct tape and its seemingly endless list of uses may come to mind. One item that probably doesn’t come to mind is the lowly safety pin. It turns out, you can do a lot with […]

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Society, Culture, and Prepping with Sara Hathaway

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In today’s podcast, Lisa and I welcome Sara Hathaway back to talk about where our society is headed, how our changing culture is adding to the increased violence, and why these are important to pay attention to. Preparedness is not only about food and water storage, it’s about paying attention to what is going on […]

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