Plants are on sale and finishing the garden beds.

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The local Shopko had plants on sale so I checked them out for starter plants and did I score! I found a limited selection but the guy running the green house gave me 50% off the already low sale price because the plants were looking a little sad in the small starting pots.  I got a new celery plant called Tango to try out in the beds.  The Utah tall celery does very well in my garden/climate.  Shopko had some nice little water melon and cantaloupe plants for half price, so I set up a couple of small trellises for the melons to climb on each end of one  of the garden beds. My hope is I can get some other ‘cole’ plants going like broccoli, Brussels sprouts and even cauliflower growing and the fabric cover will keep the from getting burnt or ‘bolting’.  This is the middle bed so the trellis and cover cloth should block some of the afternoon sun on the root crop bed.

The lettuce kiddie pool bed is growing plants and I added a sun shade fabric I hope will protect the plants from the heat.  The big bed for tomatoes, peppers and sun loving plants are ready to plant and I used cages as I did not  build the netting for the plants.  Sorry, I ran out of money and time for that experiment this season.  I bought a lot of the frost protective fabric so I can cover the crops this fall using the cages or PVC pipe as structure to protect the plants from frost in October.

I’m playing catch up with garden as I need to add the trellis netting and the PVC pipe for protecting the garden beds against frost.  At this point I want to get as many plants growing , practice succession plantings and finish up the PVC pipe works and watering system.  The raised beds are not finished and need more materials but I have dirt and seeds/plants so I will get all the food production I can, while I finish constructing the beds.

At this time all I have to get done is filling in the garden beds.  Be it plants on sale or starting seeds for later harvest.  Not part of my original plan but I can be flexible and make the new garden beds work.

Conflicted – Changing Their Mind – What Would You Do?

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Conflicted is a Survival Game.  Each card in the deck has a scenario that will stretch how you would respond in an SHTF situation.  What would you do?  Leave your thoughts in the comment section below!


SCENARIO – Economic collapse has happened and government forces are seizing all resources and searching the country for all nonconformists.  You lead a well hidden and prepared group of about forty.

About a month ago, the group added a small family of four and now that family wants to return to town which is a government controlled area.  This may compromise the groups safety, location, and possibly their lives.  How would you deal with this situation?  And why?


READ: Society Is Too Civilized to Collapse? A Lesson from WWI


Don’t forget to leave your thoughts in the comments below.

If you are interested in purchasing your own Conflicted Survival Game Cards  – CLICK HERE.




Hawaii — Underwater Debris Field Destabilized — No Support For Land Structure — And Now More Weight and Lubrication

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The first 2 quakes of this “volley” started far off shore and relatively deep.   This likely disturbed the THIS IS THE KEY POINT….the prior debris field that was stabilizing things, is disturbed and weakened.  
prior debris from the last Hilina Slump “slump off”.  
Geologists prior to this were claiming that the prior slump will prevent <link> or slow down another big Slump.     

Sure, unless of course some big EQ destabilizes the debris field and “re-liquifies” the rubble.   Which is exactly what happened.

I called for an even larger EQ— I was convinced enough that I alerted the authorities by phone.

My call for a very large EQ, was spot on.       A 5.6 (the largest of this sequence, they keep getting incrementally larger!) 

The quake happened about an hour later.   Damage reports have yet to come in, but this will likely spur greater fountains and flows.

This flow is already bigger than anything in 200 years, and regular people hear that “things are slowing down”.    MSM at it’s “best”.   

Growing Blueberries Quick Tips

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Blueberries have been shown to be one of the foods that can help to extend life and quality of life. There are health benefits attributed to these little guys that are really game changes. Not to mention, they are the best thing you can toss into pancakes. What I have found is that there are …

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Hawaii Volcano — A Fresh Swarm of EQ Indicates Another LARGE Earthquake Coming Soon

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The past week has seen

1) Quiet, energy building days
2) Followed by “Swarm  days” my definition of is over 100 EQ over 2.5 in last 24 hours.
3) Followed by LARGE EQ over 5 and massive lava flows.

Yesterday was quiet
Today shows 122 EQ >2.5/24H

Expect massive quake, each one has been getting larger after the Calm/Swarm.

Many of the quakes are exactly along the Hilina Slump (search that term, its scary)

What is More Dangerous Than Nuclear “Science”, Circumventing Rules By Creating Human / Chicken Embryos

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At Rockefeller University in New York City “they” have created a hybrid embryo that they say will bring insights into fetal development — and perhaps lead to new cures for several diseases — without bumping up against the so-called “14-day rule” that prohibits research on human embryos more than two weeks old.


Just because we can doesn’t mean we should.   

Surviving with Sprains and Broken Bones

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Surviving with Sprains and Broken Bones

Surviving with Sprains and Broken Bones.
When help is not on the way!

Sprains and broken bones happen and they happen often. From a simple sprain to minor and compound fractures, injuries effecting mobility can be one of the lengthiest and most uncomfortable to overcome. Is it possible to treat and immobilize the injury long enough to function and allow healing until help can be found? Will you be the burden or can you still be a productive member of your group?

Continue reading Surviving with Sprains and Broken Bones at Prepper Broadcasting Network.

The Ultimate Guide to Shooting for Preppers

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by Contributing Author

If you are a prepper, chances are you have made firearms a part of your plans. Maybe you are new to the gun, having decided to start prepping recently, or maybe you are a homesteader from way back, and been around guns your whole life. Either way, guns are a tremendously powerful tool, and an asset like no other when the time comes to save your own, or someone else’s, life from a bad guy hell-bent on doing you harm.

Seasoned gunslinger or brand-new greenhorn, you have areas you might improve on, facets of your shooting game that need a little tuning up. Your practice opportunities are limited: chances are you have neither time nor money enough to shoot all day, every day honing your skills. Therefore it makes sense to apply your efforts and money in a way that will let you see the most success in the shortest possible timeframe. Some of these things will be equipment choices, and others will be best practices for your time on the range.

Make no mistake, you’ll still need to put in plenty of sweat equity, dry-practice and blisters, but if you follow the advice and tips I lay out in this article you’ll be set up for success, instead of frustration and shorten that learning curve so it looks more like a bump, not a cliff. That’s enough preamble; let’s get to the good part!

What’s Your Objective?

Before you head off anywhere, you have a destination in mind. You don’t set off without a destination unless you are wandering, and if you are knowingly planning to wander along your training path this isn’t the article for you. Without a destination you don’t know where you are going, and worse, you don’t know how you’ll get there, or even tell if you have arrived.

“What do I need to accomplish?” is the question you should ask yourself. This is your mission, and the mission dictates the preparations. If you are the average, everyday citizen prepper, your mission is the protection of yourself, your family and loved ones.

“Protection” is subjective. Protection from what? Famine, economic collapse or a pair of scumbags in the living room at 2AM all require different proscriptions. This article is obviously about firearms and their use, so we are going to guide you to deal with the latter, today.

Preparing for human threats means you will likely be using a firearm in defense of yourself or others. This means it will be a fight, and preparing for a fight with a gun is a whole different ballgame than standing on the range plinking.

So let’s refine our objective. “I must protect myself and my loved ones from violence. To do that, I must be able to fight and prevail.” Better. Now, what tools would best help you accomplish that? Your body, certainly, the first tool. A gun, also. What kind of gun? Whether you use a handgun, long gun or both, will depend on your unique circumstances. We’ll get to that shortly.

It is not enough to merely have a gun without the skills to employ it effectively. Without skills it is no more than a loud, violent talisman, a good-luck charm.  Luck is a fickle patron, and not one you must trust to.

Now our objective looks something more like, “I will protect myself and my loved ones from violence. To do that, I will use my gun to fight and prevail over those who would harm my family and me. I must be able to shoot fast and accurately to stop the people who are trying to kill me.” Now that’s a mission statement!

Training for a Fight

If you practice regularly on the range, that’s great. Sharpening core skills, especially accuracy is crucial. But, if all you do is shoot bulls-eyes on the square range, you aren’t gaining skills that you must have when the chips are down. Don’t misunderstand, you’ll need accuracy and plenty of it, but you’ll also need speed. You’ll need to be able to react, draw and fire decisively after confirming the threat. You may need to shoot from a compromised position, inside a vehicle or while moving.

Now, you may not be able to work on most of those skills at your local range, but there is plenty you can do “dry,” without ammo to perfect your techniques. And before you start practicing anything, it would behoove you to know what you are doing. If you have no prior formal training, or pertinent military or law-enforcement background, you probably don’t. That’s ok! Everyone started somewhere.

Before you start practicing techniques you picked up from YouTube or the latest, greatest how-to article on guns and gunfighting (ahem), you should drop everything and attend formal training classes, and do so in a progression that fits not only your current skill level, but also moves you toward fulfilling your mission statement. So, if you are a city or suburban dweller, no matter how cool it is you will not be best serving your family by springing for that long-range precision rifle class instead of concealed handgun skills or close-quarters rifle or shotgun. Be honest and realistic with yourself about your needs and requirements.

And don’t assume that any trainer is as good as another just because he has his shingle out. There are trainers who are transcendent in their discipline of choice, and only middling to fair in others. An honest one will tell you where his stronger and weaker skillsets, and hopefully direct you accordingly depending on the training you seek. We’ll touch more on this a little later in the article.

Ok, so we know what our objective is, and we know that we must be able to fight well to achieve it when the fated hour arrives. The next question is, where should we start? Well, Rule #1 of a gunfight is “Have a gun,” so we’ll start there.

Tools of the Trade

Handguns, rifles and shotguns all have their place in the prepper’s armory. Everyone has a favorite type, one that they naturally gravitate to and pull out to get in some practice on a range day. We’ll break down the perks and flaws of each below, but I’ll tell you right up front if you are a civilian prepper, and by that I mean you don’t carry a long gun for a living, you should be putting in the majority of your training time and dollars on handgun skills.

The handgun is the only firearm you’ll take with you everywhere, and actually have close at hand out in the world, unless you are one of these fruit bats that tries to make a point by open carrying their AR or AK into a Starbucks or the mall. First, don’t be one of those people.

Second, if you have some idea that, besides travelling out of state on a trip or vacation, you’ll keep a rifle in your vehicle and then somehow retrieve it to have a better gun to fight with, you are so wrong on so many levels it nearly defies description. I’ll bitterly address that can of worms a little later also.

Now, you will have handy access to your long guns at home, and you had better believe they will typically do a far better job of incapacitating a scumbag than your handgun will, and so you should be training with your rifle or shotgun, just not at the expense of getting rusty with your handgun. Your handgun is your constant companion. Like a faithful dog, it should go wherever you go. That’s the reason we’ll devote more of our training time to it.

Maybe you already have guns, maybe not. Below, I’ll list some of the factors you should consider in selecting a given type of gun, their perks and flaws, and tips and tricks I have picked up along the way with each. If you are looking to buy gun in order to equip yourself, they will serve as guidelines to help you buy intelligently. If you already have a few guns or a collection, then the following may help you make a decision as whether or not to trade-in for better one, or just train-up to the gun, ensuring you can get maximum effectiveness out of it.

Keep in mind while you read the following: all of my advice is based on the assumption that the arms in question will be used for self-defense against humans, not for hunting, or even defense against large animals. So, no kidding, a 9mm is not your first choice against grizzly bears or greater American saber-toothed weasels. Use common sense.  I will make a few off-the-cuff statements about those considerations where appropriate, but that is not the primary focus of this article.

Guns, Guns, Guns

As you scroll through my points below, remember that the two major criteria for selecting a gun for defense are mechanical reliability and an adequate caliber, i.e. is the cartridge effective against humans under most circumstances, with or without a light barrier between me and him? There are a great many handguns that could fit this description, revolvers and autoloaders alike. If you can check those two boxes, though, and learn to shoot the gun fast and accurately, it can take care of you by taking care of business.

After those two criteria are met, everything else is a bonus, or an advantage. Please note here, I am not advocating for anachronisms: I am a wholehearted believer in autoloading pistols, rifles and shotguns, over revolvers, lever- and bolt-actions, or pump-actions. Technology marches on, and while I am as interested and sentimental over those designs from yesteryear as anyone, you should not choose one over a modern design if you have a choice.

Those older, manually operated actions can still serve just fine, though: if you have good lever action rifles, and the ability to train and practice with them, is there any reason seven or eight shots of .30-30 or similar won’t suffice? Or a 7-shot .357 Magnum revolver? Should you go trade in both and spend to get an AR and a Glock?

Not necessarily. I won’t lie to you and say that the AR and Glock don’t come with significantly more advantages than the lever-action and the wheelgun, because they do. They are far easier to shoot well, quickly, and have a great deal more ammo on board, on top of being easier and faster to reload. This may not make any difference at all in the short, sharp fight in your house at midnight, but it might in a prolonged situation involving bands of bad guys during some societal catastrophe or After-the-End scenario.

All I am saying is if you put in the time to become proficient with your gun, it will likely work fine. Hitting what you shoot at and doing that quickly is the key absolute. Any gun beats no gun, and any gun will do if you can do. Remember that.

Whatever gun you choose, you’ll want to make sure the gun is popular or common enough that you’ll have plenty of aftermarket support available for it: magazines, speedloaders, holsters, spare parts, accessories and service. If you are forced to turn to cheap, one-size-fits-all holsters or expensive custom options for parts, that will gobble up money that could better be spent on practice and training. Likewise, having a broad institutional body of knowledge to draw from, be it from the factory or from gunsmiths is crucial if you need replacement parts or repair.

A rare, oddball gun may promise a greater degree of effectiveness (or just stroke your ego) but I can assure you any luster it may have will vanish when you are having to hunt down magazines at $75 a pop on the secondary market and call every shop in town to try and get a broken part replaced.


For a handgun, your base choice will come down to a double-action revolver or an autoloading pistol (semi-automatic). The revolver is a much less popular choice than the autoloader these days, but is still viable. Autoloaders are the primary service pistols of military and police forces as well as the overwhelmingly popular choice among the citizenry for defense. The revolver is still found commonly in a backup-gun (BUG) role or in the holsters of diehard adherents.

The revolver has the advantages of a simpler manual of arms, less sensitivity to ammunition, and less sensitivity to neglect. The autoloaders perks are greater capacity, ease of reloading, typically a nicer, easier to manage trigger and overall greater durability than the revolver. The autoloader is also in most situations easier to conceal, apples-to-apples, lacking the revolver’s chunky cylinder.

If you are considering an autoloader, viable choices for cartridge for a primary gun are 9mm Para. and .40 S&W on the lighter side, or 10mm Auto and .45 ACP on the heavy side. Today, the 9mm has the most advantages owing to solid terminal performance, low recoil, high capacity and low cost. The 10mm and .45 ACP have more of what you don’t want and less of what you do, especially cost. They do however penetrate more deeply, as a rule of thumb, and show good performance through intermediate barriers like automotive glass, and so may have merit if you anticipate working around vehicles often.

The larger cartridges also make more sense if you live in a non-permissive state and do not have easy or legal access to magazines that hold more than 7 or 10 rounds, or are living and operating in an area where you have a legitimate concern about large or dangerous animals. In that case, depending on the critter, a magnum revolver could be a better choice.

Speaking of revolvers, your go-to cartridge options are .38 Special and .357 Magnum (which of course can chamber the .38 Spl). 9mm Para. is curiously becoming more common today in modern revolvers, and as is 10mm Auto. Note both will require typically require the use of moon clips thanks to those cartridges rimless design. Larger options for revolvers adequate for self-defense include the .41 Magnum, .44 Special and lighter .45 Colt loads, the big issues here for all being cost and for the first two availability as those cartridges are far from popular.

The .44 Magnum and other big-bore magnums, while certainly effective, have far too much penetration, recoil and blast for the average user to employ effectively without a ton of practice, and sometimes not even then; hard-kicking, thunderous magnums are notorious for instilling a bad flinch in shooters, and not everyone can overcome that kind of pounding to master such a handgun.

Some handguns with proven track records that you might consider:


  • Glock Models 17,19, 22,23, 21 or 30; Generation 3, 4 or 5
  • Smith & Wesson M&P9, M&P40 or M&P45
  • Z. SP01, P07 and P10
  • Sig P226, P228, P229, SP2022 or P320
  • Heckler & Koch USP series, VP9, P30 or HK45
  • Beretta Mod. 92/M9 series, PX4 series, or APX.
  • N. Model 509, FNX series, or FNP series.


  • Smith and Wesson J, K or L frame series
  • Ruger Security Six, GP100 and SP101


You have more choices in actions for a defensive rifle: Semi-automatic, lever action, and bolt action are all popular, and you will occasionally see pump-action designs. Ideally, you will want a semi-automatic, one that accepts a detachable magazine, but pump and lever actions are quick enough, and are acceptable here if chambered in a modest cartridge. Bolt actions are best relegated to hunting or precision rifle roles.

Your go to rounds for defensive rifle, especially for in-home defense are the in the “intermediate cartridge” class: light, fast bullets, and mild recoil, along with modest penetration compared to the older full-power .30 caliber battle rifle and hunting cartridges from yesteryear. Trusty standbys are .223 Remington, 5.56x45mm or 5.45x39mm.

Your lighter .30 caliber rounds like .300 Blackout, .30-30 Winchester and 7.62x39mm can serve well in a home defense role with careful bullet selection, as can to a much lesser extent .308 Winchester/7.62x51mm NATO. Beware that that cartridge has a well deserved reputation for serious penetration, and the increased weight and length of rifles chambered in it will become a hindrance. Pay particular attention to load selection as you should be rightly concerned about over-penetration and downrange hazards using such a gun in the home.

If you are leaning toward a rifle that chambers a pistol cartridge stop and give that some thought. The whole reason you are reaching for a rifle is to get rifle performance. You don’t want a big pistol, you want a rifle! And before anyone says anything about the dinky pistol bullet picking up some extra velocity out of a long barrel, save it: It isn’t enough to turn it into anything except a slightly faster pistol bullet. The only other perk, having interchangeable ammo and possibly magazines with your pistol is a fringe benefit. Pick a proper rifle!

Select a model with care, as the ability to mount an optic and light on a defensive rifle is very important. Some rifles that you should consider for self defense include:

  • Colt, BCM and Sons of Liberty Gunworks AR-15’s.
  • Arsenal and Rifle Dynamics AKM’s and AK-74’s
  • Ruger Mini-14 and Mini-30
  • Winchester and Marlin lever action rifles
  • M1 Carbine


For serious social purposes, your only real choices will be semi-auto or pump action. If a break action is all you have, by all means giddyup, but the low capacity and cumbersome reload will be a significant liability. Cartridge selection is 12 or 20 gauge, either will work just fine for two-legged vermin, and pack enough shot at adequate velocities to work well. 10ga. is too much and too expensive, guns chambering it are heavy, comparatively rare and expensive. 16ga. is certainly adequate, but is hampered by poor availability and limited variety of factory loads. Discount entirely 28ga and .410 bore.

A quality semi-auto is a fine choice, but they are typically expensive, and may require tuning in addition to being ammo sensitive. The payoff is that their manual of arms is more forgiving than a pump action, they are fast cycling and they have less felt recoil than most pumps. Being able to place 3 loads of buckshot accurately into a scumbag’s thoracic cavity in less than a second is heavy medicine indeed. If you were using No.1 buckshot, that would be around 45 .30 caliber, deeply penetrating wounds. That’s a lot of trauma to deal with.

The pump shotgun is America’s favorite, and one of the most plentiful types of guns of all. A pump action shotgun is a good all purpose gun if one is willing to put in the  work to be proficient with it; they are typically not ammo sensitive, robust, simple and inexpensive. However, manual operation of the slide is tiring and prone to being mishandled by the shooter, inducing a malfunction.

Another advantage that shotguns bring to the table is ammo versatility: by merely changing ammo types, you can be ready to engage targets at close range with dreadful effectiveness using buckshot, or reach out with some accuracy past a 100 yards and terrific penetration with a slug. The obvious double-duty application of shotguns for hunting mammals or birds is obvious, and so are very attractive options for a prepper on a budget trying to cover many bases at once.

Drawbacks of all shotguns include low to average capacity, excepting very long competition guns or specialized box-magazine fed variations and having a more diverse set of mandatory skills that must be practiced to attain proficiency: loading, patterning, running the slide on a pump-action, slug-exchange drills, and so on. Autoloading and pump action shotguns are as a rule pretty heavy, especially when loaded.  Shotshells are also heavy and bulky, and takes up a lot of room both on your person and in storage.

Like rifles above, consider a light mandatory for a defensive shotgun, and consider a red dot sight as well; shotguns do have an increased hit probability compared to other guns, especially at medium range with shot, but they must absolutely still be aimed carefully at close ranges. There will be nothing like the cloud of lead flying out of the barrel as is commonly thought.

A few worthwhile shotgun models are:

  • Remington Models 870, 1100, 11-87 and Versa Max.
  • Mossberg Models 500, 590, 590A1 and 930
  • Winchester Model 1300 Defender
  • Benelli Models M1, M2, M4, Nova and Supernova
  • Beretta Model 1301
  • N. P12, TPS and SLP

Training: Your Ticket to Competency

Getting professional training is commonly neglected by most gun owners, and quite a few preppers. It is much more rewarding to go buy a new gun, deck it out in all the latest accessories, then head to the range to blast off half a case of ammo with your buddies. Listen, don’t threaten me with a good time, but that does not accomplish much in the way of growth. You have a mission, remember?

Instead, strong-arm your buddy into taking a class with you. This will be enjoyable for the both of you, and increase the training value; your friend will take away different points than you will and vice versa. Comparing notes after your training day is a great idea, too. You just paid a pretty penny to attend a decent class, don’t trust to memory to remember everything! Paper remembers what the mind forgets!

If you are a novice, or don’t already have your license/permit to carry concealed, make your first stop a basic pistol class that will certify you in order to obtain the license. If you already have it, or are a little more seasoned, you should look into a more advanced pistol skills class, preferably one with a focus on drawing and engaging targets from concealment. You will be carrying concealed, right? Everywhere you go, right?

Likewise, your long gun training should focus on closer ranges, including inside-the-home/close-quarters distances. You do want to be competent all the out to 300 yards or so with a rifle, but even in a true End-of-Global-Society level event, the chances that’ll you be slugging it out at 100 yards and closer is far higher than long or extreme range sniping.

Before signing up for a trainer’s class or attending a particular school, do your due diligence and investigate them. Look up reviews online and ask for references to prior students and alumni. See what the trainer is known for and what their professional background and continuing education looks like. Good training is expensive, a too-cheap price or complete lack of presence online or across gun-centric forums may be a warning sign.

Conversely, military or police experience is not the end-all, be-all word in the training world. Just because someone has done a job, even very well, for years does not mean they have the skills or attitudes to make a good teacher. This is where those references and online reviews will pay off. Ask about the person’s skill level when they attended the class. Was their skill level similar to your own? What did they take away from the class? Are they planning to take anymore training from that trainer? If not, then why? It’s your dollar; investigate who you’ll be learning from!

Practice: Putting in the Work

After you have taken training and now know why you will do things a certain way as well as how, you can take that education and go practice your newfound skills on your own. When you go to the range, treat it like going to the gym; go with a goal in mind, and track your progress. Use a shot timer, or timer app on your smartphone.

Maybe you will be working speed today, or perhaps accuracy. Will you be working on your handgun, rifle or shotgun skills? Maybe transitioning from long gun to handgun? Whatever skill you have decided to work, have a standard you are struggling to reach. When you start meeting that standard consistently, increase the difficulty. Push yourself!

When you go to practice, be present mentally. Shooting is largely a mental game, and this is a big part of it. Visualize positive outcomes. Mentally assemble the fundamentals necessary for a perfect shot: grip, stance, sight package, perfect trigger press and follow-through. If you can’t flush a bad day at the office or fight with your significant other from your brain to get in a little range time, consider what the stresses of a potentially lethal encounter will be like.

Whatever the results of your practice session, record the results in a training journal. Keep detailed notes on the distance, target, drill and gun and load used. Make notes of your thoughts and overall experience. Every so often, run benchmark drills, ones that are shot the same way each time so that you can accurately gauge your growth, and notate your current personal bests.

A good policy is to begin every practice session with a fundamentals drill, one you do well, and then end the session with the same drill, striving for perfection on both. One of my personal favorites, shooting for accuracy, 10 shots freestyle, on a B-8 target at 25 yards, for score. If you can routinely stack good groups on a target at 25 yards, you know your fundamentals are solid.

Best Practices

As I alluded to above, if you have a pistol, and can legally carry it, you should be carrying it everywhere you can. The pistol is every bit like a fire extinguisher or parachute; it’s one of those things you rarely need, but when you need it, you really, really need it, and it had better be close at hand and functional.

If you aren’t carrying it constantly, why not? Is it a “hardware” problem? Is the gun too uncomfortable, is it too big to conceal effectively with your usual attire in the local climate? Or is the problem a “software” issue, that is, something you are worried about or just don’t like? Maybe you only carry when you “feel” like you’ll need it, or do you worry that you’ll be spotted while carrying it? Do you lack confidence in your abilities? Like most problems, the obstacle points the way to the solution.

If the gun is uncomfortable or seems too hard to conceal, an upgrade in holster and belt (if applicable) is probably in order. Perhaps the gun is really too big to be easily concealed the way you want to conceal it. Try a different method, or trade the gun in for a smaller variant.

If you are carrying openly, and have the option to carry concealed, stop. Unless you are working on a ranch, private land or some such situation, your blatant advertising of the gun you are carrying is setting you up for disaster. Some proponents of open carry say it is a deterrent to criminals. Really? The how come hundreds of uniformed police officers are attacked yearly? Those same proponents will claim that their draw will be faster, and cleaner. Perhaps, but practicing your draw from concealment will fix any deficiency.

You must not assume that any criminal that sees your holstered gun carried openly on your hip will be “deterred.” In fact, for the really hardened badasses, they aren’t’ scared of your gun, having been shot at or shot before, and now they know where they can get a gun, and may not hesitate to relieve you of yours. It’s no one’s business that you are packing but yours. Keep it concealed. Stop advertising.

Now, if you are one of these people that openly carry a long gun, either for a demonstration or “spreading awareness”, I’ll come right out and say that you are part of the problem that 2nd Amendment proponents are currently facing. Your methods, while perhaps honestly motivated by a desire to do good, do nothing but alienate the general public, attract all the wrong kinds of attention and draw the worst conclusions about gun owners. Talk about “scaring the horses…” Knock it off.

A trend today is the carrying of a long gun and extra ammo in your vehicle at all times, due in part to the increase in mass shootings and terror attacks on crowded public places. This is understandable, but misguided. If you are not a cop, or working as a private security operative expected to respond appropriately to such a scenario, forget it. Let me lay out the scenario, and this scenario assumes you are carrying a concealed handgun.

You are out in public, say at the mall, when you hear a rapid string of shots ring out down the corridor. You have your holstered handgun and an AR in your car. If you decide to engage the shooter and stop the killing, but choose to return to your car, retrieve your AR, then return and engage the shooter, the shooter has been killing people the whole time. You would have been better off interdicting with your handgun.

Same scenario, shots break out much closer to your location. Go to car, or take cover and engage shooter with handgun? If you make it all the way out to your car, you have escaped! So escape, and call the police! I am not sure what the legal ramifications may be if you escape from a situation like that, and then go back in packing a long gun. Of course, you are trying to stop an evil person doing evil things, but this is the USA in 2018.

Ok, new scenario. You pull up to a location, say a busy restaurant and as you prepare to park hear shots ring out in rapid succession inside. What do you do? Grab your rifle and head in side or get the Hell out of Dodge? The correct answer is ‘Get the Hell out of Dodge.’ If you are still in your car, your best bet is to burn rubber away from a bad situation. Don’t become a casualty.

Let’s say you decide against reason to grab your long gun and head inside to confront the bad guy. You are now a non-uniformed person holding a rifle, in a situation where other gun-toting citizens may be looking for just such a figure. They don’t know you from Judas, and the optics of situations like this lead to good guys taking “friendly” fire because they fit the coarse description of an active shooter.

Don’t forget also that police will no doubt be receiving a torrent of calls with descriptions, often wrong descriptions of the shooter. You do not want to be holding a gun, any gun, when they get there, especially in an ongoing event. Think it through. Leave your long guns at home unless you are on a road trip.


Readiness and proficiency with your firearms is an important part of prepping, but knowing where to invest your time and money to achieve the best results is tricky. Using this article as a guide, you will be able to determine your needs, select the best guns for the job and decide where best to invest your effort.

What did you think of the tips in this guide? Do you agree with the recommended guns and best practices? Let’s hear what you think in the comments!

Free PDF: How to Make a Solar Still

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This PDF on How to Make a Solar Still is pretty interesting, my first attempt at making one was in the desert with the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit.  We were sitting around waiting on waiting and I build one to see exactly how well it works.  I have tried other methods, including using a plastic bag to retrieve water from leaf transpiration. A solar still is a simple device which can be used to convert saline, brackish,polluted or other water into drinking water, Its function is very simple–basically a pan of impure water is enclosed by a transparent cover. The

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13 Best Diversion Safes That Criminals Will Never Discover

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This diversion safe guide will help you hide your most prized possessions valuables in plain sight.

Whether you’re looking for your first diversion safe or want to add a new one to your collection – I’ve got your back.

Because diversion safes have come a long way and for example of this, check out #9 below!

And once you find the best diversion safe for you, you’ll want to get the most out of it.

That’s exactly what this guide does.

Today we will cover the following topics:

  • What Is A Diversion Safe
  • Regular Safes vs Diversion Safes
  • Best Diversion Safe Stash Items
  • Key Features Of A Good Diversion Safe
  • Best Diversion Safes
  • How to Make A Diversion Safe


You’ve likely seen diversion safes used in Hollywood movies.

You see them in films to create mystery, intrigue and exciting plots twists.

Usually, it’s something like a book that opens up, containing guns instead of pages.

Or table tops that slide aside to reveal secret documents. Or drawers with false bottoms to conceal scandalous photos or illegal paraphernalia…

A classic example of this is in the iconic movie Shawshank Redemption.

It’s the scene when Andy Dufresne hides a small excavation hammer inside a hollowed-out Bible.


They are safes, wearing the skin of an everyday object.

And the more mundane and boring the object, the better.

A thief searching for valuables will automatically skip over a dull, everyday object.

That’s the power of a diversion safe.

Their brain will not register it as anything of value.

Soda cans, hair brushes, electrical sockets, and food jars make great diversion safes.

Because nobody’s going to take the time to search those items. 99% of the time, those objects are what they look like.

So it’s not a wise tactic for a thief to check those items on the off chance that it’s a diversion safe.

There’s no time for that during a ransack of someone’s house.

Thieves are looking for obvious targets – like jewelry drawers, closet safes, and expensive gadgets.

The idea of diversion is a simple concept, and when used correctly it’s powerful.


The problem with a conventional safe is – you know immediately there’s something of value inside.

It’s a treasure chest for criminals.

As soon as they see one, they know whatever’s hidden inside is probably worth stealing.

Because no sane person would put trash in an expensive safe, right?

Nope, we put $100 bills, gold coins, expensive jewelry, and family heirlooms in them.

So when presented with such a juicy opportunity – a thief won’t hesitate to nab your safe.

They’ll even pry that sucker off the wall if it’s bolted down.

And don’t fool yourself, they know how to get them open “back at the shop.”

That’s why it may be safer to hide your valuables in plain sight…

This is not to say that you shouldn’t use a conventional safe to keep your valuables securely stored at home.

Short of serious safe-cracking skills, modern safes are challenging to get into for a would-be thief.

But there are some situations where you want to hide something in a non-conventional manner.

The best way to do that is with diversion safes.

These sneaky lockboxes offer a handy way to store valuable items in unsuspecting places.

Like in a hairbrush, a boring book, a jar of peanut butter or even dirty underwear!

Diversion safes offer a different kind of security. A disguise that makes your valuables virtually invisible.

Diversion safes come in all kinds and sizes and in almost any design you can imagine.

There’s a diversion safe out there that’s the perfect fit for the job at hand.

As A Way To Introduce You To Skilled Survival, We’re Giving Away Our #78 Item Complete Prepper Checklist. Click Here To Get Your FREE Copy Of It.


Of course, there’s an endless number of valuables you can use your diversion safe to hide.

But here are a few of the most common and the most popular:

Stashing Emergency Cash

Having an emergency cash stash is a valuable survival preparation step. And diversion safes are perfect for keeping a little somethin’ extra hidden away.

A bit of “mad money” you can access quickly.

Or some extra insurance for the day the financial sector collapses.

With a diversion safe, you know exactly where you can get your hands on some cold hard cash.

You can quickly grab it on the way out the door in an emergency disaster.

Because keeping all your cash in a bank and ATMs is a disaster waiting to happen.

Hiding A Spare Key

Don’t tuck your spare house-key under the doormat.

That’s only slightly better than leaving the front door wide open.

But there are plenty of diversion safes, designed to look like rocks or landscape objects.

Things that are normal to see on or around a porch.

Keeping a spare key inside one of those is a smart way to hide a key and avoid the dreaded lockout.

Concealing Illegal Drugs

I’m NOT advocating for drug use here…

But if you happen to have an illegal substance, there’s no better place to hide it than a diversion safe.

Obviously, they’ll hide the contents from looters, roommates, spouses, and curious kids. But they’ll also protect your stash from snoopy authorities.

Just be aware, even the best diversion safe won’t keep a drug-sniffing dog from finding your stash.

Protecting Special Documents

Perhaps you have some “special” documents you want to keep close at hand but also safe.

If have such a document but it’s worth stealing, storing them inside of a diversion safe is a sneaky way to protect them.

Most diversion safes are large enough to keep a USB thumb drive, inside of them.

So, you could store a small library of information in your diversion safe.

Sending Secret Messages

Need to deliver a message in secret? Need to send some critical information to someone you CANNOT meet in person?

No problem.

Stash your message inside of a diversion safe, and leave it in a pre-specified location.

A message delivery system without creating a digital footprint.

Just remember to end the message with a p.s.:

“destroy after reading!”

Sneaking Weapons Around

Something unsuspecting like a book or a clock can work for weapon concealment.

Now we’re not encouraging you to sneak guns or knives into places where they’re illegal.

But the option is there with the right type of diversion safe.


Just like well-designed survival gear, there are key features in any good diversion safe.

When you’re looking at all your options online, keep these particular qualities in mind.

Ordinary, Mundane, and Boring

A quality diversion safe is like using camouflage, it blends in with its environment.

But the environment you’re working with is in a forest, it’s a household.

So avoid anything flashy and fancy.

That would defeat the entire purpose of the diversion safe.

That is why diversion safes often take on the appearance of items that people want nothing to do with:

  • cleaning supplies
  • lengthy books
  • personal hygiene items
  • there are even some disguised as dirty laundry

The more mundane the object, the better.


Some diversion safes have the right idea in mind, but miss the mark on authenticity.

A diversion safe has to be believable.

If it sticks out like a sore thumb as a fake book or a fake can of soda, it is much more likely to attract unwanted attention.

A well-designed diversion safe should be able to fool you.

If you can tell it’s a dupe, so can other people.

Do not protect your valuables on the chance the person trying to take them isn’t observant.

Just because someone is a criminal doesn’t mean their not smart. Heck, the best criminals are the smartest ones.

Secure Mechanism

Many diversion safes rely too heavily on their disguise as a deterrent, and not security.

If you’re hiding real valuables, get a diversion safe with a sturdy locking mechanism.

A key lock or a combination lock enhance the effectiveness of any diversion safe.

No, a professional thief will take the diversion safe with them and use tools to break into it.

But a lock will deter curious kids and roommates, etc. from opening the diversion safe – should they happen to find it.

Has Some Keepsake Value

The problem with “low value” diversion safes is those items often get tossed out, moved, or lost.

Nobody thinks twice about tossing out an empty bottle of laundry detergent – that’s actually your safe!

Of course, you’d never accidentally do that, right?

But a helpful neat freak friend or your busy beaver mother-in-law might.

Safes made to resemble items with a bit of keepsake value are at a lower risk of being accidentally tossed or lost.

Think items that are memorable (like a potted plant) or holds some long-term valuable (like a book).


With a market as broad as the internet, there’s an endless number of styles, shapes, and sizes available.

It’s tricky to know what exactly what you’re getting.

Especially since diversion safes don’t really have recognizable brands. Because branding one would betray the purpose of the disguise.

That’s not to say the diversion safes are not using well-known brands for their disguise – they are.

They just cannot add their own brands and logos to the safe without ruining the diversion effect.

That’s why we put together a list of some of the highest rated, most widely acclaimed, best diversion safes.

The list is diverse, to give you a taste for the vast range of choices.

Some are simple, some are clever, and still, others are outright devious.

But they are all high quality, intelligently designed diversion safes. Ones explicitly designed to disguise your personal valuables.

1 – Varitek Hide-a-Spare-Key Fake Rock

This classic diversion safe looks like a plain old rock.

It will blend in perfectly with its natural habitat right outside your door. 

Or hide it further away from your house for even more diversion confidence.

Perfect for hiding those spare keys!

2 – Morton Salt Diversion Safe

The safe is inside an old salt canister.

This helps it blend seamlessly with any kitchen setting.

It’s also larger than most, so it offers a bit more in the way of storage space.

Just be careful not to throw this one out by mistake.

3 – Mantello Hair Brush Secret Hidden Diversion Safe

The bottom of this innocent looking hairbrush screws off, to reveal a hidden compartment.

This diversion safe is perfect for hiding cash, spare keys, notes, or documents.

What I really like about this safe is it’s a hairbrush you can actually use it as a brush.

Most other diversion safes are just replicas.

And it makes sense to take with you when traveling. I’m sorry but traveling with a canister of salt might put you in the loony bin.

But just be aware, it’s too small to fit any larger valuables.

4 – BigMouth Inc. SPAM Can Safe

This can safe uses a certified, licensed SPAM label.

This helps to conceal its true identity as a diversion safe.

Just make sure you don’t pack it in your prepper food with the intent to eat what’s inside…

5 – Aquafina Water Bottle Secret Diversion Safe

This bottle has a double layer of plastic built into it, so it always looks like a full, unopened bottle of water.

The hidden compartment is behind the water label making it very difficult to detect – brilliant!

6 – Book Safe with Metal Lock Box

This is my favorite option when it comes to diversion safes.

It’s a book but it’s an insanely boring one – a New English Dictionary.

A book like this one has a believable cover, and a lockbox built in.

So it is extra secure.

Add this book to your bookshelf, and it’s virtually impossible to tell it’s a diversion safe.

There’s no visual difference between it and the ones it’s pressed between.

Plus, with a combination lock, there’s no worry about losing keys.

7 – Human-Friendly WD40 Bottle Diversion Safe

Here’s one for the garage.

This actual WD40 can opens up so you can access the inside through the bottom of the cannister.

Stuff this thing full of valuables and tuck it on a shelf with other such hardware supplies.

It virtually disappears – a safe in plain sight!

8 – Hidden Safe Fake Household Surge Protector 

This is basically a safe disguised to look like a surge protector.

Although it not a working surge protector, it has an on/off switch which glows red.

However, you can plug devices into the surge protector and the protector into the wall to add to the realism.

This helps to keep the illusion as real as possible.

9 – Innovative Internet Products Underwear Diversion Safe

This is a genuinely raunchy way to hide your cash, but it’s sure to work.

What thief in their right mind is going to sift through your filthy soiled laundry?

Not even the most desperate thief would touch soiled undies in hopes of finding valuables.

They really went out of their way to make this pair of tightie-whities as nasty as hell!

10 – Jcuniversal Stash Spot Lighter Diversion Safe

Made to look like a Bic lighter.

This tiny, portable diversion safe is perfect for sneaking small items around…

This is by no means a large diversion safe!

You might be able to sneak “something” into a concert or venue that prohibits that “something.” If you know what I mean…

11 – SafeInside Flower Pot Diversion Safe

Complete with a lock and key, this flower pot diversion safe is one of the most impressive options on this list.

It disguises your valuables with little to no danger of being thrown out or destroyed.

Mother-in-law’s don’t throw out flower pots!

It comes with a locking mechanism for security, and it is easy to remember.

12 – Air Vent Large Diversion Safe

This diversion safe is simple and larger than most of the other options.

Because sometimes a tiny safe just isn’t enough.

For example, you can’t fit a handgun and some ammo in book safe.

But an air vent is a large diversion safe where you can stash bigger valuables inside of it.

Or even better yet, invest in a gun safe!

13 – The Pillow Diversion Safe

Pillow Diversion SafeThis one is for those who want to keep a close eye on their valuables even at night.

And yes, this pillow can be used as an actual pillow.

So you can sleep with your “precious” under your head – if that’s your thing.

Note: If you looking for even bigger diversion safes – take a look at our “How To Hide Guns In Plain Sight“. This post will give you lots of hidden storage furniture and locations.

As A Way To Introduce You To Skilled Survival, We’re Giving Away Our #78 Item Complete Prepper Checklist. Click Here To Get Your FREE Copy Of It.


Obviously, with a concept as simple as the diversion safe, you can make your own.

It can be as simple as converting an old product into a container with a hidden compartment.

Boom, you have yourself a diversion safe! And it will probably cost you a lot less, too.

To give you some ideas on what’s possible – check out these 3 simple to make DIY diversion safes:

The question of security becomes a double-edged sword, though.

Because, if you are lazy about making your diversion safe it might not be effective.

You shouldn’t cut a mountain dew bottle in half, stuff it full of cash and call it a diversion safe.

You won’t be doing yourself any favors.

Buying a pre-made diversion safe means that you have a guaranteed level of security. Especially if you get a diversion safe with a lockbox inside of it.

By that same token, though, in making your own, you can make sure that it is extra secure.

If you go the extra mile and design a good diversion safe, you could create a hyper-secure diversion safe. 

Heck if it’s good enough, you might even be able to sell to others…

So what kinds of things make for good diversion safes?

Well, the list of highly rated diversion safes above has some good examples.

But here’s a short list of other items that might work well, too:

  • Flashlight
  • Lamps
  • Paperweights
  • Liquor or wine bottles
  • Candles
  • Food cans/boxes
  • Condiment bottles

You get the idea.

And, a “diversion safe” doesn’t have to be a mundane object, gutted and turned into a storage compartment.

It can be something as simple as a false bottom in a drawer. Or a hidden gun safe behind a painting, or a safe disguised in a brick wall…

The possibilities are endless when you get creative with diversion safes.

Because the concept is so clever and simple, the sky is the limit.

Diversify your diversions!

Will Brendza

P.s. Do you know where the closest nuclear bunker is from your home?

There are a lot of natural nuclear shelters in the US that are absolutely free. And one of them is near your home.

Click on the image above to find out where you need to take shelter.

The post 13 Best Diversion Safes That Criminals Will Never Discover appeared first on Skilled Survival.

Sulfonamides (Sulfa Drugs) in Survival

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Sulfonamides (Sulfa Drugs) in Survival


The availability of antibiotics to the family medic in survival and other austere settings may prevent the unnecessary deaths of loved ones due to infection. When help is not on the way, the average citizen will find these drugs to be important tools in the medical woodshed.

You might think that Penicillin family drugs were the first to be used by the general public, but another popular family of antibiotics called sulfonamides, or sulfa drugs, were actually on the market even earlier. Indeed, it has been called “the first miracle drug”. Sulfonamides deserve credit for saving tens of thousands of lives during World War Two. It was so widely used that many soldiers’ first aid kits came with the drug in pill or powder form. Medics were told to pour it into any open wound.

Sulfonamides were first identified to have antibacterial action by a German scientist named Gerhard Domagk, who evaluated certain dyes for possible medical uses. He found a red dye produced by Bayer (yes, that Bayer) that apparently eliminated bacterial infections in mice. This became “Prontosil”, credited as the first broad-spectrum antibiotic. Interestingly, it didn’t show a lot of antibacterial action in test tubes; Prontosil’s effect was much more noticeable on a live subject.

Another interesting tidbit about Sulfa drugs is that the active ingredient had been used by the dye industry for decades, so no patent could be obtained. Bayer had to share the ingredient with anyone who wanted to use it, eliminating the potential for big profits. This led to many different variations, some of which were “snake oil” that contained toxic ingredients. One such elixir killed a hundred people in 1937, leading to the enactment of the first serious oversight of pharmaceuticals, the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act of 1938.


Sulfonamides act to inhibit an enzyme involved in folate synthesis, an important aspect of bacterial DNA production. This family of drugs is bacteriostatic; that is, they don’t directly kill the bacteria, but inhibit growth and multiplication. If bacteria are unable to multiply, they can’t sustain the population needed to damage the body.

A commonly used sulfonamide is the combination drug sulfamethoxazole 400 or 800mg and trimethoprim 80 or 160 mg, known by the brand names Bactrim or Septra in the U.S. In Great Britain, it is called Co-Trimoxazole (Cotrim). A veterinary equivalent is known as Fish-Sulfa or Bird-Sulfa.

ASIDE: Different antibiotics (or other drugs) may be combined into one product. Usually, this is done because the two work together to have a stronger effect against an infection or other condition than they would if used alone. This is called “synergism”.


Broad-spectrum Sulfamethoxazole/Trimethoprim is effective in the treatment of many infections, including:

· Some upper and lower respiratory infections (chronic bronchitis and pneumonia)
· Kidney and bladder infections
· Ear infections in children
· Cholera
· Intestinal infections caused by E. coli and Shigella bacteria (a cause of dysentery)
· Skin and wound infections, including MRSA
· Traveler’s diarrhea
· Acne

Of course, as an antibiotic, no sulfonamide has any effect on viruses or viral illnesses.


The usual dosage in adults is sulfamethoxazole 800-mg/Trimethoprim 160mg twice a day for most of the above conditions for 10 days (5 days for traveler’s diarrhea).

The recommended dose for pediatric patients with urinary tract infections or acute otitis media (ear infection) is 40 mg/ kg sulfamethoxazole and 8mg/kg trimethoprim per 24 hours, given in two divided doses every 12 hours, for 10 days. 1 kilogram equals 2.2 pounds. This medication should not be used in infants 2 months old or younger.

In rat studies, the use of this drug was seen to cause birth defects; therefore, it is not used during pregnancy.
Another sulfa drug, Sulfadiazine, is combined with Silver to make Silvadene, a cream useful for aiding the healing process in skin wounds and burns. Cover completely twice a day.

Sulfamethoxazole/Trimethoprim and other Sulfonamides are well known to cause allergic reactions in some individuals. These reactions to sulfa drugs are almost as common as Penicillin allergies, and usually manifest as rashes, hives, and/or nausea and vomiting. Worse reactions, however, can cause blood disorders as well as severe skin, liver, and pancreatic damage. Those with conditions relating to these organs should avoid the drug.

Although an allergy to Sulfa drugs may be common, it is not the same allergy as to Penicillin. Those allergic to Penicillin can take Sulfa drugs, although it’s possible to be allergic to both.

Sulfonamides and other antibiotics aren’t candy, and they must be used wisely and only when absolutely necessary. In normal times, seek out qualified medical professionals before you consider their use.

Joe Alton MD

Learn more about Sulfa Drugs and other survival antibiotics in the Book Excellence Award winner in Medicine, The Survival Medicine Handbook: The Essential Guide for when Medical Help is Not on the Way, available on Amazon or this website.

Three Easy Ways To Make Hard Boiled Eggs

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Can you use three easy ways to make hard boiled eggs today? I used to make hard boiled eggs by placing the eggs in a pan with cold water and then putting the pan on the stove to bring it to a boil. I would have to standby to keep checking the pan because you know how it sometimes boils over, right? Then I would turn the stove off and let it sit for 20 minutes. Next, I would drain the water and quickly rinse the eggs with cold water (complete with ice cubes). Not anymore, baby!

I have a few friends that raise chickens, and I applaud them. I buy my organic or regular eggs and make egg salad sandwiches or just eggs with salt sprinkled on them after I hard-boil or bake them. You probably know by now that my favorite electric pressure cooker is the Fagor: Fagor 670040230 Stainless-Steel 3-in-1 6-Quart Multi-Cooker. I bought this one after attending a class, actually several classes by Chef Brad. He is amazing. If you ever have a chance to go to one of his cooking classes make sure you sign up. Chef Brad’s website My daughter has four kids at home and the six-quart pressure cooker is plenty big for her family. She uses her Fagor pressure cooker almost every night, literally. If you need a good egg salad recipe you may want to try mine below.

1. Make Hard Boiled Eggs In An Electric Pressure Cooker:

hard boiled eggs

The first thing you do is put the cold eggs (I did 12 eggs) and one cup of water in the pressure cooker. The one cup of water is the minimum amount of liquid that is required to cook any food in this brand of pressure cooker.

hard boiled eggs

You can see the “lock” and the “open lock” on the pressure cooker above. You place the lid on and turn it and when it “clicks”  you can see the “open lock” then it is locked and ready to turn the dial on top to “pressure” or “seal” depending on the brand you have. Plug the pressure cooker power cord into an outlet and you are ready for the next step.

hard boiled eggs

This is the front of the pressure cooker and you can see some numbers. When the lid is locked it says 0.0. It looks like 8.8 in the picture but it’s 0.0.

hard boiled eggs

Now to cook eggs in this pressure cook it takes 18 minutes on HIGH. So, click the HIGH button until it says 18 (18 minutes) and push START. Now here is where you must be patient. You will see the “18 minutes” until the pressure is built up and starts cooking. Then you will see 17, 16, 15 minutes and so on until you hear it beep, this means it’s finished cooking.

hard boiled eggs

PLEASE be careful with this next step. You can see: “pressure, “steam” and “clean”. You MUST NOT turn that dial without a hot pad, wash rag or tongs or whatever on top of the lid. I place the rag to protect my hands from the hot steam. It is extremely hot steam.

hard boiled eggs

I slowly release the pressure by turning the dial to “steam” with a wash rag over the dial and a pair of tongs. The steam is VERY HOT and will release under some pressure. Step back and let it do its thing. Once the steam stops if you can turn the lid the pressure has been released. There is still a lot of steam when you turn the lid and lift it off.

hard boiled eggs

You carefully lift the eggs out of the pan with a slotted spoon or a regular spoon and place the eggs in a bowl with cold water and ice cubes. I let them sit for maybe ten minutes and then peel them.

hard boiled eggs

Here they are peeled and ready to eat. You can use fresh eggs for some many things. This is the one of the easiest ways to make hard-boiled eggs,

hard boiled eggs

2. Make Hard Boiled Eggs In the Oven:

hard boiled eggs


Place the number of eggs you want to hard boil (bake) in a muffin tin. I take them straight from the cold refrigerator. If I’m going to turn my oven on I’m going to bake 12 eggs to fill my muffin tin. Today I only did six because I did so many other eggs in the pressure cooker. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. I put about 1/4 to 1/2 inch of water in each muffin cup, give or take.

If it’s one inch that’s fine. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and run cold water over the eggs. Add some ice cubes to chill the water faster. Now they are ready to peel! These are so easy to peel, I love it! You will never go back to standing and watching a pan boil to make them on top of your stove.

3. Make Hard Boiled Eggs In Your Sun Oven:

hard boiled eggs

I wrote this article about one year ago about baking eggs in a Sun Oven, but I wanted to share it for those who may have missed it.


I preheated the Sun Oven to about 350 degrees. The way you preheat a Sun Oven is by opening up the shiny reflectors and facing the oven towards the sun. Just close the oven lid and lock it in place to keep the heat inside. It takes about 20-30 minutes to preheat to 350 degrees. This time period will depend on when you have ideal sun rays in your location for using a sun oven. Typically I say between 10:00 a.m. to about 2:00 p.m. The pans must be dark, not shiny or it will reflect the sun and heat away from the Sun Oven and the items you are trying to cook. My favorite Sun Oven: All American Sun Oven Dehydrating and Preparedness Accessory Package

I decided to add an extra 10 minutes to be safe. I “baked” the eggs for 40 minutes. The eggs get “speckles”…no worries. Those spots are normal, they look weird the first time you see them. I call them baking specks. I like to use hand/finger heat resistant gloves when using my Sun Oven because the glass door is very hot. The gloves are easier to use than hot pads, in my opinion. Heat resistant gloves: #1 Oven Gloves – Extreme Heat Resistant EN407 Certified – 1 Pair – Use As BBQ Gloves, Oven Mitts or Pot Holders – Enjoy Complete Safety When Cooking or Grilling – 3 Sizes Available

I removed the eggs after baking and plunged them into cold water with ice cubes like you do when you use your kitchen stove. I waited another 10 minutes and peeled them. Yes, you will see a few tiny brown specks caused from “baking” them, but……wow this is so much easier! One HUGE deal is the fact they peel easier! I love saving money on my power bill too! I really like, and suggest you try to use the items I have available for emergencies. This gives me confidence that the process will actually work when I’m under pressure to perform in an emergency situation.

If you have a Sun Oven, or any new item to try out, do it now before you really need the experience of how things work, you’ll be glad you did! Picture trying to use your Sun Oven for the first time when the emergency has caused the power to go out. We always try new appliances, food supplies, and other preparedness items at our house right when we get them so we have some experience under our belts.

Again, picture trying to bake bread or prepare some other vital food item at the time of the actual emergency without ever testing things first. I hope you try making hard boiled eggs in your Sun Oven. If you don’t have one I highly recommend saving your money to buy one of these to save on your utility bills and be ready for any unforeseen disaster.


Linda’s Egg Salad Recipe

Linda’s Egg Salad Recipe

  • 8-9 hard-boiled eggs (peeled)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 3/4 cup Mayonnaise or Miracle Whip
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  1. Chop the eggs as finely as possible. I use a chopper. Combine the eggs, mayonnaise or Miracle Whip. Stir in the salt, pepper, and sugar. Serve on lettuce bed or make a sandwich with the mixture.

Let me know what you put in your egg salad, I would love to hear from you so I can try something new.

Whole Wheat Bread

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How To Survive While Traveling

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How To Survive While Traveling


How To Survive While Traveling

This week Mike came up with the show topic. And We will be talking about How To Survive While Traveling,

Show notes will be lite this week. But there is a show to listen to at least.


How To Survive While Traveling, Survival Traveling, Traveling, Road trip



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The Grid-Down MultiMachine 10-in-1 All-Purpose Machine Tool

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Have you ever heard of the MultiMachine before? I hadn’t until I read this article earlier this morning. Apparently, it’s a DIY open source project intended for developing countries “…that can be built by a semi-skilled mechanic with just common hand tools… electricity can be replaced with ‘elbow grease’ and the necessary material can come … Continue reading “The Grid-Down MultiMachine 10-in-1 All-Purpose Machine Tool”

Israeli Bandage – How To Use It To Stop Traumatic Bleeding

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The ‘Israeli Bandage’ is highly recommended for First Aid Kit trauma preparedness. It has a large sterile non-adherent pad surface to cover the wound, and is attached to a length of elasticized material (like an ‘ACE’ bandage). It uniquely wraps to a hemorrhaging wound with a built-in pressure applicator. The device can potentially save life between time of incident to urgent care…   (UPDATED) It’s one thing to have the Israeli Bandage, however, – Know what it looks like after being removed from its vacuum sealed packaging – Know how to use it (it’s easy, but you should see it

Original source: Israeli Bandage – How To Use It To Stop Traumatic Bleeding

How to Prepare for Emergencies in Canada: A Helpful Guide – Guest Post By Mitchell Wood

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Whenever people travel to Canada, the first thing they comment on is the frigid weather before anything else (yes, even before elk and deer hunting!). They ask me, “How do you survive the cold?” while I, in turn, wonder how they live in the extremely hot climates!
Well, during winter in Canada isn’t equal across the entire nation. There are specific areas that have much more extreme conditions compared to others. With that being said, there are unfortunately more risks of disasters. Across Canada, there are a ton of safety hazards like floods, earthquakes, blizzards, or even tornadoes! In addition to that, there are also other risks like accidents or power outages because of it.
That’s why it’s crucial to know how you can survive these harsh weather conditions and the consequences that come with it. If you’re wondering how, then read on as we talk preparing for emergencies across Canada.
The Ultimate Guide to Emergency Preparation
While we can never be entirely prepared for what may come, it’s best to at least plan ahead and pack what’s needed to stay as safe as possible. Here are the four major points to start your plans off with:
1. Acquaint Yourselves With the Risks
Before you learn about preparing for the worst, you have to know the risks associated with where you are from. Like mentioned, winter and harsh weather conditions in Canada aren’t always the same across regions.
For example, in northern regions, you have the extreme cold weathers with more risks of natural disasters. In regions such as Muskoka and Bruce, it isn’t as intense.
There are more risks of earthquakes in British Columbia, tornadoes in Ontario, and blizzards in Nunavut. Many provinces are susceptible to flash floods.
Some of these national disasters might be relevant in your area. You will be able to acquaint yourself with what you need to prepare for through websites such as, where you can identify the most likely disasters.
2. Create a Plan
Once you have now identified with what you need to prepare for, it’s time to create an emergency plan. This will help you and your loved ones know what to do in case of anything unexpected that arises.
In case an emergency happens, you might not be together with your whole family. It’s best to plan on where and how you will meet, as well as how to contact each other and what to do during various situations.
Practice any evacuation plans made, draw emergency exits at home, and identify safe and evacuation areas all of you can visit.
Update your emergency plans yearly and make sure that you practice evacuating your home, as well as changing batteries of your smoke alarm, restocking kits, or replacing food and water in your emergency kits.
3. Prepare an Emergency Kit
During emergencies, you won’t be able to pop by the stores and get what’s needed. Furthermore, you might experience power and water outages for a few days to weeks, depending on the intensity of the disaster.
The kit should be easy to carry with everyone knowing where it is. Keep it in a suitcase with wheels or in a backpack, stored in an accessible area. Here’s a checklist on what to pack:
• At least two liters of water
• Food that doesn’t spoil
• Manual can opener
• Flashlight, candles, matches, and lighters
• Radio
• Basic first aid kit and any special medicine needed
• Extra keys to house and car
• Cash in small bills and coins
• Copy of contact information and emergency plan, as well as copies of documents and identification
• Garbage bags
• Basic tools
• Extra clothes and footwear (cold weather bootsand thick jackets are recommended for the freezing weather)
4. Learn Who to Contact
Once you already prepared everything, from a plan to emergency kits for the family, it’s best to acquaint yourself with who to contact. There are many resources and emergency contacts across Canada, all depending on the region you’re from. Do your research and collect contact information for hospitals, local government offices, and schools with evacuation centers.
Besides learning who to contact, make sure that you mentally prepare yourselves for what may happen. Learn all about the risks and impact of such disasters, showing your whole family what may happen rather than to hope for the best. It isn’t just about being physically prepared but emotionally as well, as this can be traumatic.
Wrapping It Up

Canada is a beautiful and quaint place to live in. However, with its frigid weather and risk of natural disasters, it may leave you fearful for your family. Through becoming emotionally and physically prepared for the worst, you will stay safe and lessen the risk of injury.
Use these tips as a starting point to plan with your loved ones. Don’t postpone and begin preparing for emergencies today.
If you have any questions or would like to share your tips and experiences on survival and preparation, then comment below. Your input will be much appreciated.
Author Bio:
Hello and welcome to my blog. I am Mitchell, founder of Musket Hunting. Here at Musket Hunting, I provide guides on how to hunt effectively, answer reader’s questions, and review on the latest hunting gears. Hunting will give you the experience that nothing else in this world can provide with.

Muslim Attacker Says Berlin Is Our City Now

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The German-language Bild newspaper, citing an Israeli newspaper, said the 17-year-old, identified only as Yonatan, and his friends were waiting for a train at the Zoologischer Garten Station when he played a song called “Tel Aviv” by an Israeli singer.

According to Yonatan, the Arab men shouted at him: “Hebrew music? For 70 years you are murdering children. Berlin is our city now and here we don’t listen to f—— Jewish music.”

Yonatan said he walked away, telling the men they are free to play Arabic music just as he is free to play Israeli music.

But he and his friends were followed, he said, and one of the Arab men began to threaten him.

“If I had a knife, I would kill you … if I meet you again you are finished,” the man said, according to Yonatan.

Yonatan said that when his two friends tried to intervene, the group attacked. One person was hit in the face and another was injured with a broken bottle, requiring hospital treatment, the Israeli newspaper Hayom reported.

Read More

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U.S. Nuclear Weapons Guarded By “Elite” LSD-Using Airmen?

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nuclear weapons

Are U.S. nuclear weapons in the hands of hallucinating Air Force recruits?

America’s nuclear weapons are far more vulnerable to terrorists or deranged individuals than most people believe. Several airmen guarding U.S. intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) were reportedly tripping out on LSD.

Acid or LSD (D-lysergic acid diethylamide) is a hallucinogenic drug which means it alters the perception of reality. Acid is a powerful mood-altering drug that can make some people believe fantasy is real. It was discovered and synthesized by Albert Hofmann in the early 40s and famously used by Tim Leary and hippies in the 1960s.

A military court-martial convicted six airmen from the 90thMissile Wing at F.E. Warren Air Force Base of using or distributing LSD, the Associated Press reported. The airmen apparently used LSD openly for many years and were even tripping out on the public streets in Denver.

“I absolutely just loved altering my mind.”

The 90thMissile Wing is in charge of 450 LGM-30G Minuteman 3 ICBMs housed in silos on the Great Plains. Each Minuteman 3 can deliver a nuclear warhead to any location on Earth.

News stories did not say what the airmen’s jobs were or how much contact they had with the nukes. Some of the Airmen were part of the 790th Missile Security Forces Squadron, a sort of SWAT team that is supposed to defend against terrorist attacks.

Disturbingly, the Air Force only learned about the LSD use from a social media post, the AP reported. A video of an airman smoking marijuana popped up on Snapchat which led investigators to the drug ring.  The airmen were abusing LSD because the Air Force had stopped “substance testing” for that drug.

“I absolutely just loved altering my mind,” one of those convicted Airman 1st Class Nickolos A. Harris told a military judge.

The airmen’s use of LSD was so blatant that they videotaped themselves using it, the AP reported. Airmen were allegedly tripping out at Curt Gowdy State Park, a public park in Wyoming. The F.E. Warren Air Force Base is located just outside of Cheyenne.

Most frightening was the behavior of Airman 1st Class Devin R. Hagarty who deserted and fled to Mexico in an attempt to avoid prosecution. Hagarty was caught, convicted and sentenced to 13 months in a military jail for deserting as well as using and distributing LSD. After his arrest, Hagarty also admitted to using cocaine.

How Secure are America’s Nukes?

The Air Force attempted to cover up the LSD incident. The AP only learned of the LSD problems by filing a Freedom of Information Act Request.

The LSD use was part of many behavioral problems in the 90th Missile Wing that included burnout, sexual assaults, domestic violence, and alcohol abuse, the AP reported. The AP has charged that the missile force once an elite organization, has deteriorated badly since the end of the Cold War because the Pentagon’s attention has been focused on the war on terror.

If drug dealers and abusers can operate openly at a military base with nuclear weapons so can terrorists or political extremists. A major fear is that terrorists would use drug use to blackmail military personnel into giving them access to nukes.

Will Terrorists get Nuclear Weapons?

Preparing for a nuclear attack by building a fallout shelter or taking other precautions makes more sense than most people believe. The nuclear weapons that are supposed to protect us might be in danger of falling into the wrong hands.

To add to the fear, the Pentagon has plans to build a new generation of smaller nuclear weapons that would be easier for terrorists to capture and use. Hopefully, the military personnel in charge of those nukes will not be tripping out on acid.

There is no evidence terrorists have gotten close to American nukes, but Al Qaeda terrorists nearly seized control of warship that may have carried a nuclear missile in 2014. Journalist Steve Coll alleged that a renegade naval officer tried to let Al Qaeda gunmen onto the Pakistani frigate PNS Zulfiqar in September 2014 in his book Directorate S.

Indian intelligence officials told Coll that the Zulfiqar may have had a nuclear missile onboard something Pakistan’s government has denied. Fortunately, the terrorists were wiped out by Pakistan’s Special Air Services (SAS) before they could carry out their plans to turn the Zulfiqar’s weapons against US naval vessels.

Most Americans think the danger posed by nuclear weapons is fear mongering or simply yesterday’s news. Being prepared for a nuclear attack, even if it’s initiated by tripped out airmen would seem to make a lot of sense in today’s chaotic world.

Quick Commentary: Rome fell, not because of the empire was outgunned or outnumbered by barbarians. Rome fell because its citizens and its military felt it was no longer worth defending.  This is a moral issue and it bleeds into every area of life including our nation’s military. The story of Salvian the Presbyter is a grim reminder of Romes pathetic decline. Worth a read because we are there.


The post U.S. Nuclear Weapons Guarded By “Elite” LSD-Using Airmen? appeared first on Off The Grid News.

Chard en Garde Manger: The Delicious 3-Season Green for Food Security

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This article on growing chard is part of our Green of the Month series. To read the rest of the articles in the series, click here.

In case you don’t speak French (or visit lots of fancy restaurants), that title is my attempt at a little food funny. The term garde manger means “the keeper of the pantry.” The modern garde manger usually does other cool stuff, too, like make garnishes for plate-up, prepare cold dishes, and even ice-carve.

Originally, though, that title was literally applied to the person who guarded the food supply from rats and robbers, and ensured there was plenty of food to last through lean times. Food security was something the wealthy took very seriously. Having a dedicated garde manger looking out for your food stores was a sign of status and meant you were an important person.

As home-food growers, particularly those of us concerned about the precariousness of our modern food supply, we also have to be garde mangers of our own pantries and gardens. Growing chard can help.

The Goods on Chard

Here are some important reasons why anyone concerned with good health and a year-round food supply should add chard to their garden lineup.

1. Long Production Period

Chard is one of those awesome vegetables that makes you a garde manger in the traditional sense—as in, it offers a continuous supply of nutritious food you can rely on even in periods of drought, light frosts, extended heat, and more.

It’s definitely a 3-season vegetable. In many cases, it can even make it through winter with just a little weather protection. Once established, it can be harvested often and over long periods of time.

2. Adds Soil Tilth Without Tilling

Long-standing chard can grow a deep taproot. This makes it a wonderful scavenger of minerals and nitrogen. It can even do well in somewhat depleted soils.

If the root is left in the ground to rot after the top growth dies, it acts similar to tillage radishes, making food for bacteria and creating air spaces to break up soil compaction.

3. Nutrition Powerhouse

A cup of raw chard has 7 calories and contains 374% of your daily dose of vitamin K, 44% of vitamin A, 18% of vitamin C, and 7% magnesium. It’s almost 93% water, which makes it extremely hydrating if you are worried about health risks from chronic dehydration.1)

A cup of cooked chard has 35 calories and contains these amounts of your daily vitamins: 636% of vitamin K, 60% of vitamin A, 42% of vitamin C, 36% of magnesium, 32% of copper, 25% of manganese, 22% of iron, 22% of vitamin E, 20% of potassium, and 13% of your daily fiber.2)

Chard is loaded with phytonutrients. Red- and yellow-ribbed chards may also contain harder-to-come-by phytonutrients like betalains, betaxanthins, or indicaxanthins.

4. Ridiculously Easy to Grow

In my own experiments with growing chard, I find it grows better if I don’t fuss over it. I plant my seeds, mulch around where the root will come up, and maintain moist surface soil until the plant is 2 inches tall. After that, I water weekly in dry periods and keep weeds down until the chard really takes off.

It does need prepared garden soil. However, I specifically skip adding compost when planting chard to encourage it to grow deeper roots rather than letting it glean nutrients from the top few inches of soil.

Some of my chard roots have been over 2 feet deep. They are technically edible, but not as tasty as beet roots.

5. Versatile for Use in Cooking

I have heard a lot of gardeners and CSA members complain about having too much chard and not knowing how to cook it. I used to have that problem until I challenged myself to prepare a multi-course meal with chard as the main ingredient.

This month, rather than give you a recipe for chard, I am going to share that menu. I hope these ideas will inspire you to find creative ways to use your abundance of garden-grown chard.

Le Menu

Amuse-Bouche (i.e., tastebud tantalizer): Essence of Chard

Sauté chard with garlic and butter. Add some cream, salt, and pepper, and puree the mix in your food processor. Run your liquid through a fine sieve to make it smooth. Served chilled in small ramekins, like soup shooters, with a bit of crumbly bacon on top.

First Course: Chard Leaf Wraps

This is a play on cabbage wraps. Steam the chard leaves and wrap them around the filling from your favorite cabbage wrap recipe in lieu of cabbage.

Second Course: Chard en Garde

Make a paste, the consistency of peanut butter, using blue cheese, minced walnuts, a little cream for texture, salt, and pepper. Spread your paste down the stem of the chard leaves and roll them lengthwise into long tubes. Tie them with some chives to hold them together. Set them on the plate like two swords “en garde.”

Third Course: Chard Terrine

This is basically a fancy name for chard lasagna. Sub in chard for pasta and use your standard lasagna recipe for the filling. Bake as usual.

Fourth Course: Sausage With Chard Slaw

To make the slaw, ribbon the chard and mix with raw, shredded carrots. Warm your favorite vinegar-based coleslaw dressing and pour over the vegetable mix to make a hot slaw that pairs perfectly with your favorite grilled sausages.

Fifth Course: Chard Salad

This is simply chard chopped into salad-sized bits with a Dijon mustard vinaigrette. It is meant as a digestive break before the last course. Go heavy on the mustard to give this course bite. Also, use baby chard leaves if you have them, as they are more tender.

Sixth Course: Chard Cakes

This course is about like making zucchini bread. Sure, it has chard, but the flavors are mostly masked by large doses of sugar, flour, and eggs.

Sauté chard in butter, puree it with some milk, and use it as your liquid in your favorite cake batter recipe. Use cream cheese icing for added sweetness.

This is just a peak at how to use chard in recipes. Also try chard paneer, spanakopita with chard instead of spinach, chard-and-artichoke dip, Tuscan bean and chard soup, wilted chard salad with bacon dressing, chard omelets, and more.

A Few Cautions About Chard

Too Much K Vitamin for Some

Similar to some of the other leafy greens we’ve covered in this Green of the Month series, chard has lots of vitamin K, which can be a problem for people on blood thinners or who are pregnant. Similar to using beets and beet greens, there is also some controversy about whether chard is okay for juicing.

It’s in the Beet Family

Chard is in the beet family, along with spinach. You’ll want to keep this in mind if you are using crop rotation for pest control or nutrient management.

Read More: “Crop Rotation for the Home Garden, Part 1: Pest Control”

Read More: “Crop Rotation for the Home Garden, Part 2: Pathogen Prevention”

Growing Chard

Now that your mouth is watering at the thought of fresh chard from your own garden, you need to get out there and plant it.

Soil Preparation

Chard grows best in prepared garden soil. It doesn’t need a lot of nitrogen for good production, but it does need consistent moisture. Keeping mulch or well-aged compost around the base of the plant will help retain moisture throughout the growing season.

Seed Starting

Chard is best started by direct planting in garden beds. Soaking the seeds for a few hours before planting will expedite germination.

Like beets, a single seed is actually a cluster of seeds. Planting seeds about 6 inches apart in a lattice pattern works best for beds that are 3-5 feet wide. Otherwise, if you have rows less than two feet wide, just plant them about every 4-6 inches apart down the center of the row. If you use mounded or raised beds, it’s better to avoid planting chard at the edges for better moisture control (edges dry out faster). Plant no deeper than 1/4 inch for speedy germination.

Lattice Planting - Chard - TGN

When your seedlings emerge, there will usually be a few new plants clustered together. Use scissors to cut the extra seedlings back to the ground. You can use the trimmed leaves in salads. Do not pull the extra seedlings, as this may disturb the roots of the plants you want to grow.

For continuous production of baby chard for salads, start new plants every few weeks. As the plants mature and their root mass expands, the leaves begin to grow much faster. This makes it harder to harvest baby greens from mature plants at exactly the right time. Younger plants are better for growing baby greens and older plants are better to use as cooked spinach substitutes.

Young Plant Care

While plants are young, make sure to keep the top few inches of soil moist by watering as necessary. Once plants are about 5 inches tall, the root is usually sufficiently deep that you can cut back to once-a-week watering if rainfall is less than 1 inch per week.

Mature Plant Care and Harvesting

To maintain good production, you need to encourage additional growth by regularly harvesting larger leaves. Also, older leaves are more prone to insect damage and fungal issues. Timely harvesting keeps chard plants healthier for longer.

To harvest, cut the outer leaves close to the base of the plant. I try to cut my stems so that about 1 inch remains above the soil. For long-standing chard, if plants begin to slow their production, cut all of the stems down to about 2 inches from the ground. Allow the plant to regrow several leaf stalks and then start harvesting again.

Varieties of Chard

Usually when people think of chard, dark green leaves and deep red stalks come to mind. Home gardeners may also think of a mix of colors including dark red, pink, and yellow stalks. These are most likely rhubarb, Five Color Silverbeet, Bright Lights, or Rainbow Chard varieties.

These very colorful varieties are often the highest in some of those hard-to-get phytonutrients mentioned earlier. They are awesome in salads and cooked (older leaves). However, the less colorful kinds of chard are also highly nutritious and are often more prolific for using as a summer spinach substitute. 

My two favorite chard varieties for using as a cooked spinach substitute are Erbette Chard and Perpetual Spinach. These are not great for salads, but they get huge fast and allow for lots and lots of cuttings. They hold up extremely well in heat and humidity and taste delicious sauteed or steamed.

Also, here’s a list from Cornell University with more varieties to check out: Cornell Chard Variety List

Unconventional Growing Tips for Adventure Gardeners

Chard is an awesome choice for edible landscaping. The challenge with using it this way is being able to have your chard and eat it to. To keep a beautiful stand of chard while harvesting it too, go ahead and leave two plants in one hole rather than thinning back to one when the seedlings come up.

Harvest from one plant for a while, then allow it to rest and harvest from the other for a while. Alternate about every 2 weeks when plants are mature.

This works because those established, deep roots are faster at growing new leaves than young plants. However, you may have to manage the nutrition in the soil a bit better since you have multiple plants competing for the same resources. Also, root rot can be an issue in wet soils, so hardwood mulch tends to work better for this method.

Tell Us What You Think!

What’s your experience with chard—cooking it or growing it? Do you have a favorite variety or any tricks you’ve learned to keep chard in constant production? Use the comments section below to share your ideas!

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Grid-Down Missing-Person Searches

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Written by R. Ann Parris on The Prepper Journal.

Loved ones go missing every day, all over the modern world. They always have. Disasters – especially fast-moving disasters – have more than their share. In a major crisis, we can expect to continue to have lost souls we want to find. As always, a little prep work will greatly improve our odds of success.

A while ago I wrote an article about missing persons that focuses on steps to take now that applies to both continuing “normal” or near-normal life and temporary disasters. Many can assist with various limited-comms, bug-out-route and grid-down missing person searches as well.

“Psh, Only Idiots Get Lost/Lose People”

It’s easy to watch the news from our chairs and scoff over the idiocy of somebody who managed to lose themselves, partners/buddies, children, or seniors, or the choices made after somebody became lost. But it happens, all kinds of ways.

Many of us believe we’ll be busier than ever in a disaster. Busy leads to tired. Tired leads to falling asleep in an instant, in some pretty incredible places – ask a newborn’s parents. In that brief moment, kids, pets and senile seniors can be gone, gone faster and further than we sometimes expect.

It’s also pretty easy to lose your bearings in snowstorms, in less-familiar terrain, if you’re not noting the local trend for which way things pile around trees and how your direction of travel relates when tracking/stalking/retrieving game, if it’s a gray day with little sun or there was or is now deep fog, or if there’s little terrain difference to help. Then there’s disorientation from things like relative contraindication from medications, taking a different cold/allergy/PMS pill than usual, or getting bopped in the head, and making poor decisions or staggering somewhere before we get our senses back.

We’re preppers, supposedly planning for even the most improbable worsts. If nothing else, take it from that tact and make a plan. Otherwise, we’re the ones guilty of complacency bias and only hoping for the best.

MPs Are Not Always Lost

MPs can know exactly where they are and exactly how they would get home, if they could. A vehicle accident/malfunction, rotting wood giving way, being treed by a bear/dogs, getting Tigger’ed into a river, gored by a buck/bull, snagged in a game trap or barbed wire, pinned by the vehicle/equipment we were working on, dislocating a shoulder when we fell out of a tree stand so we’re hanging by our harness unable to climb or release … all kinds of things can happen, even to experienced folks.

Again, preppers here. They were worth planning to feed and defend. They’re worth planning to find if they go missing, even when there’s no agency to tap for help.

Communication – Pre, Peri & Post

Just like we need to communicate the 3x-primary and 3x-alternate bug-out plans/routes to family and partners in case we’re not actually there, everybody needs to understand our missing person plans. Add the list of steps you’ll take to everybody’s pocket/wallet/fridge/bag medication, patient history, and ICE lists.

The steps will be conditional, just as our get-home and bug-out steps vary by needs and abilities. It’s going to depend on personnel, terrain, weather, and human climate conditions as well as if we’re home or mid-bug out. Create a quickie reference guide akin to SALUTE reporting or RTFA assignments for facets/functions you need to address. Game plan as many variables as possible, amending the outline as you go and creating an SOP for each general situation.

Share that plan. If it’s a group that meets or if the family is a captive audience in the car or around a campfire, that’s a great time to bust out printed outlines and gather input to create our plan.

Especially with family, remember, you’re not conducting training or a lecture unless you’ve been invited to conduct training or a lecture. Approach it as “hey, guys, saw this on the news… what if… check this out… Adam, what do you think about… Eve, how would you handle… Hey Zus, do you have any ideas on… Bani, what would you change with…”.

The perceived input opportunity will greatly impact how information is received, how well it lodges, and whether some five-year-old has the chance to offer one of those brilliant “the elephant is still in the fridge” observations that seriously impacts your success.

So does our communication when something goes wrong.

Part of ALL crisis planning needs to be eliminating “calm down” from our vocabulary. I seriously question if ever in the history of human speech has “calm down” actually had positive effects, argument or panic mode, but it’s even less likely to work with a missing loved one. The goal is “chill” but we don’t want to actually say “dude, chill; you’re/that’s not helping”.

They may shut down – costing us their input – or it can backfire entirely with “Don’t tell me to calm down!” arguments or people heading off on their own. If our people are important enough to find, it’s important enough to learn how to communicate under stress, in a way that doesn’t create additional distractions.

Find alternatives that express a “why” and convey action instead. “I’m spastic, too. We need everybody together to gather information and eliminate possibilities so we can find them without losing extra time.”

Having ready-to-go plans, with and without current resources/authorities, can help. It eliminates the willy-nilly checking and “what do we do” stages, streamlines information gathering, and creates definitive action steps. Just having set steps takes away panic, and following them gives us the “do something” outlet of action, keeping everyone productive (and calmer).

Common MP Thoughts

Let’s face it: Most people do not want to admit they’re lost. They’ll keep going another “five more minutes” or “one more hill”. Repeatedly. Fighting that ego from a searcher’s end is impossible. (Also, delays from: “Ermagad, I’m in so much trouble” from both MPs and babysitters/caretakers.)

Therefore, we plan for MPs to cut some circles, zig-zags, and perpendicular trail even if they do eventually go “okay, fine, Imma hug dat tree now that I’m 500-5000 yards from where I was when I went ‘uh-oh’.” We also plan for them to have had time to wait, dehydrate/become tired (poor decision-making), fret, and start moving again.

That means we start with checking specific locations, but when we search, we search wide.

MP Search Basics

Whistles – Whistles can be heard when you’re behind/under rubble or too dehydrated/exhausted to purse your lips or make sound. They get dampened by thick brush and forest, but the shrill still carries further than croaks and shouts, and it’s a much more distinct, unmistakable sound.

I understand not wanting to add more to pockets and keyrings. Still, daily task kit buckets/boxes, and range, hunting, GHB/BOB/72-Hour/GOOD, and day bags can all handle a small piece of plastic or metal clipped to them. So can life vests, horse tack, the mower, ATV, tiller, PTO on-off switch or attachment point, and tow hitch (ideally somewhere low – like, where it can be grabbed if you’re on the ground pinned or broken).

Mark Your Trail – Urban or wilds, once you realize you’re lost and as you search, mark where you’ve been and where you’re headed. Put supplies for marking on the pocket list so it’s not forgotten.

Make sure to mark both “sides” and “top and bottom” when you go over a verge, change direction to reach resources, or circumvent impasses. It can be breaking branches, notching trees, colorful cord/rope, strips of cloth or tape, clothespins, hi-vis spray or tube paint, dragging a foot the direction of travel, paper to wrap or tuck, or using rock or a chunk of metal to hammer/scratch a mark in concrete or brick.

From the MP side, we can also leave messages. “Water”, “fire tower” or “downhill” can be carved into a stick, door, etc. Had Bill Ewasko scratched his “well, boogers” and then his “oh crap” intentions into a bone or written in blood on a shirt sleeve and stuck them atop or sticking out of a mound on a ridge or the center of a trail, we’d probably know what happened to him.

Teamwork – Ideally searchers go out in at least pairs or foursomes. It’s a safety thing, and it provides options for communicating and reacting to developments.

Base/Control – Whether we have radios/phones or are totally non-electric, even if we only have 2-3 people, one stays “home” (or wherever the MP is supposed to meet us). The home-base body is going to mark cleared areas and coordinate most-likely spots and searchers as information/personnel become available. They’re also there to keep people there as they return, MP or searchers.

Base/control personnel can be chosen either for coordination skillsets, or to decrease their risk exposure. If I have an ER nurse and a basic shooter-grower with equal search skills, Doc holds the fort. Likewise for even just a head cold, or whose available gear/boots are most suited. Continually assess available assets for who you’d send where (for all scenarios, not just MPs).

If you can’t leave a body, create a message board where the MP disappeared, where they’re heading, at the campsite, at nearby water sources, etc., telling the MP to stay put and leaving information about coverage and plans/goals for others.

If there’s only one map, it goes with the searcher(s) unless they’re very familiar with the area – in which case it reverts to base/control. Keep BOB and vehicle maps in insert sleeves or have Contact or parchment paper that can be used as overlays for non-permanent notations (and inside Ziploc’s in case it’s raining).

Come-Back & Rally – Create recall signals or rally intervals that fit grid-down, no-electronics home and on-the-trail situations. We need to pass incoming information (like finding the MP), especially in risky terrain/climates/weather. Arrange flags, flares (wildfire hazards), foghorns, sirens, gunshots at interval, a return-to-base every 2-6 hours, whatever fits our needs and abilities.

Pattern Awareness – Habits can help establish timelines and clue us if somebody left in a hurry or is acting out of character. Absent and present bags, clothing/shoes, and equipment can tell us where MPs aren’t as well as where they might be. Know where somebody was going to garden, hunt, fish, and collect wood, and the routes they use to get there.

List a reminder on pocket checklists if searchers need to carry out must-have’s like an inhaler, insulin, blood thinner, or seizure meds.

Specific Targets – Nobody goes out to “just” look. The ones checking likely spots work off a list. If there is not positive contact with base/control, they return before they re-deploy, even if they think of another or found a trail to follow. If somebody trails, they stick to trailing. They return/make contact before acting on any brilliant idea that occurs.

Without likely spots or a tracker, you work a spiral or you zig-zag a set of square grids or cones leading from the MP’s last-known location and likely destination or alternate destinations. Again, those souls do not re-deploy without positive contact with base/control.

Otherwise, the same locations get checked by multiple teams while others go unchecked for hours/days, searchers end up looking for searchers who failed to rally (resources away from MP, or unnecessary endangerment/exposure after an MP is found), and only one team has information that would be valuable to all of them or would contribute to forming a better picture, which sometimes completely changes how and where you’re looking.

Grid-Down Missing Persons

While the grid is up and for however long authorities exist, getting them involved immediately makes a huge impact on missing-person recovery. On our own, we need to act quickly, but it needs to be orderly. An SOP and pocket quick-reference checklist to guide information gathering and searches – one that includes communication plans for all scenarios – will prevent costly mistakes and wasted time.

There are steps in “Preparing for the Worst Day” that can make things faster both in normal life and a power-out, limited-comms disaster. Many also apply to extended grid-down mega-crisis scenarios.

People of all ages and skill levels go missing every day. They always have and always will. Don’t let this be the prep that gets pushed aside until it’s too late.

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The Best Furniture Options For Your Bunker

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There are plenty of articles about survival bunkers–why you need them, where to put them, how to build them, and so forth. However, there aren’t many articles about the type of furniture you should put in your bunker. You might not think this is very important, but if you plan on surviving in your bunker […]

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Growing Your Own Food From Seed

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Have you ever wanted to grow your own food in the garden? Perhaps you are already growing plants and wildflowers on a regular basis, but you now want a self-sustainable way of putting vegetables on the table. Many would probably consider paying top dollar at the local nursery for seedlings that they transplant to their … Read more…

The post Growing Your Own Food From Seed was written by Bob Rodgers and appeared first on Prepper’s Will.