Book Review: Back To Basics

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I recently was asked to review two new books from Skyhorse Publishing. They are Abigail Gehring’s Homesteading and Self-Sufficiency. These two books are the latest in Shyhorse’s Back to Basics series. If you follow my blog, you know that I have recommended the original Reader Digest Back to Basics book for a long time. This is the book that first turned me on to homesteading. While it is tattered and torn now, it still has a prominent place in my library and I have spent many happy hours thumbing though its pages and daydreaming of having a homestead someday. I

The post Book Review: Back To Basics appeared first on Dave’s Homestead.

How to survive anything!

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How to survive anything!
David Jones “Prepping Up with the Jones “Audio player provided!

Dave follows up last week’s survival tips while traveling with the guy that wrote the book on How To Survive Anything for Outdoor Life, Tim MacWelch. That’s right three-time New York Times Best selling author Tim MacWelch will be on talking to Dave about how and why he wrote this book on surviving anything. Dave’s longtime Prepper buddy and mentor Tim will give you the best tips, tricks, hacks and OITs (Old Indian Tricks) on survival in all kind of situations.

Continue reading How to survive anything! at Prepper Broadcasting Network.

Bringing the Collapse to Life W/ Author Shelby Gallagher

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Bringing the Collapse to Life W/ Author Shelby Gallagher
James Walton “I Am Liberty” Audio player below!

On this show we have an author with us. This is a big statement because, to me, there are few people who can see the collapse like authors. When I say “see” I am not giving the credit that’s due. As an author you must use all your senses and bring the collapse to life under your pen.

Continue reading Bringing the Collapse to Life W/ Author Shelby Gallagher at Prepper Broadcasting Network.

Hidden Bookshelf Drawer

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Hidden Bookshelf Drawer I dream of a day when preppers and survivalists don’t  have to hide so much. What a time it would be for the American people to come to the understanding that they are the sole keepers of their health and safety. Maybe some day we will see this switch. After last year …

Continue reading

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Book – “Lucifer’s Hammer”

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There are two books that I consider to be absolute classics in terms of ‘survival fiction’. The first is ‘Alas babylon’, the other is ‘Lucifers Hammer’. (LH)

LH is a very polished story, which is a change from most survivalist fiction where you can tell the writer really didn’t have much experience in writing (and editing). It’s reminiscent of ‘The Stand’ in terms of setting up layers of backstory before finally getting to the actual end-of-the-world. The cast of characters is fairly broad at the beginning of the book but, much like real life, the list narrows down as attrition takes it’s toll…and some characters just face into the background never to be heard from again.

The premise is one that you don’t see to often in this genre: a comet passes close to the earth and fragments strike the planet. Enormous tsunamis wipe out coastal regions, redraw continental maps, kick huge amounts of debris into the atmosphere, and generally turn the entire planet into a sodden, dark, cold mess.

The story follows the paths of people from a wide disparate group of lifestyles… a cop, secretary, senator, scientist, playboy, rancher, astronaut, criminal, etc, etc. Are the usual survivalist tropes present? Absolutely…but pretty much because this is the book that started those tropes. The cannibal armies, plucky survivors banding together, huge ‘final battle’, etc, etc….all there. LH is the source that is referred to when later survivalist fiction gets described as ‘derivative of’. (For example, the end of ‘One Second After’ and the end of LH are very, very similar.

People who are used to the fast-moving pace of some of the shorter survivalist-books may lose interest in the character development that takes up the first third of this rather lengthy book. If you can stick with it, the backstories enhance the rest of the book.

Are there things in the book that would make the average survivalist sit up and say “Hmm…I hadn’t thought of that?” I believe so. I would say that its as realistic a story as you can have on a topic that many people say would be very unrealistic.

LH is a book I recommend to people who enjoy the genre, but are not new to it. It’s a bit intimidating in terms of length, and a tad slow paced at the beginning, but I think if a person sticks to it and gets through to the actual disaster part of the book it becomes a wonderful read.

You can usually find a used copy in most used book stores. It’s an enjoyable read for people who want a more in-depth and well-rounded story than many of the ‘shallower’ stories that are out there. Nothing wrong with the ‘light reading’ survivalist fiction (cough*Ahern*cough) but sometimes you want something a little more than just shoot-em-ups and gear porn.

LH came out in 1977, which was right around the era of high inflation, expensive gas, and Soviet expansionism…and it shows in the book. But even if it is a little dated it is still a good read if you’re after a book that has a bit more substance.

Available from the usual sources.

Prepping Up and Rick Austin and Biolite!

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Prepping Up and Rick Austin and Biolite!
Host: David Jones “Prepping Up with the Jones “Audio player provided!

On this show Dave has former Television Producer turned Prepper, Rick Austin on the show. Rick is also the brains behind Prepper Camp one of, if not the largest, outdoor Prepper and Self Reliance Expos in the country. Rick will talk about Prepper Camp and how he went form TV Producer to becoming an off the grid Prepper living the dream.

Continue reading Prepping Up and Rick Austin and Biolite! at Prepper Broadcasting Network.

Free Manuals: Military Manuals & Books About Knot-Tying

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Here are some free downloads of various books on knots and military manuals that you may find useful. You may want to consider downloading them to an older laptop and sticking it in a Faraday Bag. This will let you keep them handy, even in a worst-case scenario, without the expense of printing them.

Knot-tying

Essential Fishing Knots

Pioneering Knots and Lashings

Ropes-Knots-Ladders-Lashings-Anchorages

Knots, Splices, Attachments and Ladders

Knots, Splices and Rope Work

Knots-for-Mountaineering-Camping-Climbing-Utility-Rescue-Etc

Free military manuals

Arctic SubArctic SurvivalB-GL-323-003-FP-001

Basic Food Preparation

Canadian Military Field Craft

Marine Land Navigation

Mountain Operations FM3976

Pressure Points Military Hand to Hand Combat Guide

TC 31 – Special Forces Caching Techniques 

Terrain Analysis

Topographic Operations

US Army fm31 70 Basic Cold Weather Manual

US Army Combatives hand to hand combat FM-325-150

US Army Field Manual FM 3-19.15, Civil Disturbance Operations 

US Army Map Reading and Land Navigation

Army stp21-1 Soldiers Manual of Common Tasks Warrior Skills Level 1

US Army stp21-24 Soldiers Manual of Common Tasks Warrior Skills Level-2-3-and-4

US Marine Corps Hand to Hand Combat

US Marine Corp Pistol Markmanship

pc-iceberg

The post Free Manuals: Military Manuals & Books About Knot-Tying appeared first on Preparedness Advice.

Books About Bravery

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As a parent, raising kids who are brave, courageous, and strong is important. Whether you have boys or girls, toddlers or teens, it’s vital that you talk with your kids about standing up for themselves, being brave, and facing their fears. 
One of my favorite things about books is that they provide a safe, neutral way to talk with your kids about difficult topics. Bravery is one of those topics. While it seems like a simple thing to tell your kids to be brave, the truth is that learning how to put that bravery into practice can be tricky. Sometimes kids don’t know exactly how to apply the concept of courage to their lives, which is where books come in.
Stories provide a way for kids to see other children (albeit fictional ones) facing hardships and overcoming those problems. 
If you have younger kids (elementary age), here are several books you can read with them to start talking about the concepts of bravery, courage, and fear.


1. Sheila Rae, the Brave


2. The Tale of Despereaux: Being the Story of a Mouse, a Princess, Some Soup, and a Spool of Thread



3. Dad and the Dinosaur


4. Oh So Brave Dragon: A Picture Book


5. Lionheart
Have you read any of these books with your youngsters? If not, check out Amazon to buy a copy or visit your local library to read for free.

8 Homeschool Blogs You Should Be Reading

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When I first started homeschooling, I couldn’t get enough of homeschool blogs. Although I was homeschooled as a kid, I loved reading about the different ways people choose to home educate. Some parents swear by curriculum, some love unschooling, and quite a few opt for a mixture of the two. There are ideas, free printables, lesson plans, and interesting curriculum resources on homeschool blogs, and I loved exploring these ideas when my kids were little.

Now that they’re older, I’ve found that I still love to read home education blogs. I love seeing what other families are doing, how they’re using the Internet to supplement their home education, and how they’re teaching their kids about interesting and complex topics.

Whether you homeschool for educational, religious, or personal reasons, it’s important to read as much as possible about home education so you can find the latest and greatest resources, exchange ideas, and learn new skills that will help you in your homeschooling. The more information you have, the better off your kids are going to be when it’s time to start teaching them about new and different ideas.

Have you been looking for some new reading material? Reading home education blogs offer a great way to connect with other moms, find new ideas, and to discover new information about home education. Here are a few fantastic homeschool blogs that you should be reading!

  1. Blog, She Wrote not only has a great name, but also has tons of resources for new and experienced homeschoolers alike.
  2. Homeschool Encouragement offers a variety of resources and lots of information for parents. It’s also a great place to get a little boost if you’re feeling down.
  3. Free Homeschool Deals is the place to be if you’ve been wondering how you can possibly afford to home educate your kids.
  4. Fantastic Fun and Learning is an informative site to find ideas and activities for kids. Whether you want something educational or just something fun, you’ll be able to find something great for your little ones.
  5. Confessions of a Homeschooler is the place to be if you’re looking for giveaways for home educators or for encouragement in your homeschool journey.
  6. Amongst Lovely Things isn’t just a homeschool blog, but it has a lot of information for organizing your school area. It’s also a fantastic site to visit if you need a little cheering up.
  7. Simply Living For Him is a really sweet blog with lots of ideas for every part of your home.
  8. Tina’s Dynamic Homeschool Plus has tons of information for new home educators, as well as tons of great resources for online learning.
Do you enjoy reading homeschool blogs? Did I catch any of your favorites? Leave me a comment and let me know!

How to build a practical, affordable prepper library

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When I first began learning about survival topics like food storage and bug out bags, I knew I needed to begin building a library of actual books that could guide me through survival scenarios of all kinds. I began collecting books about gardening, household repair, first aid, military manuals, you name it. When possible, I […]

Fantasy Books for Middle Grade Readers

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As a writer, it’s probably not surprising that my kids love to read. We spend at least two or three hours each day listening to audiobooks and then an hour or two on top of that reading. Yeah, we love books around here. That said, sometimes finding new, interesting fantasy novels for middle-grade readers can be tricky. Once you’ve finished the books you love as a kid, where do you go?

Recently, I asked some of my writer friends on Facebook for suggestions on great fantasy novels for middle-grade readers. I got some fantastic recommendations and have been having a lovely time enjoying these stories with my kids.

Are you looking for new books? Check out my list and let me know what you think!

1. The Shadows

This house is keeping secrets . . .

When eleven-year-old Olive and her parents move into the crumbling mansion on Linden Street and find it filled with mysterious paintings, Olive knows the place is creepy—but it isn’t until she encounters its three talking cats that she realizes there’s something darkly magical afoot. Then Olive finds a pair of antique spectacles in a dusty drawer and discovers the most peculiar thing yet: She can travel inside the house’s spooky paintings to a world that’s strangely quiet . . . and eerily sinister. But in entering Elsewhere, Olive has been ensnared in a mystery darker and more dangerous than she could have imagined, confronting a power that wants to be rid of her by any means necessary. With only the cats and an unusual boy she meets in Elsewhere on her side, it’s up to Olive to save the house from the shadows, before the lights go out for good.

The Shadows (The Books of Elsewhere, Vol. 1) is a story about an 11-year-old who moves into a new house, but nothing is as it seems. This story is really interesting and has a decent pace. We’ve been reading a few chapters each night before bed, but each chapter ends on a cliffhanger so sometimes falling asleep after reading can be tricky! If you like this story, there are four more books in the series, so this is a great one to start if you plan to do even more reading.


2. A Hat Full of Sky


Rats! They’re everywhere: in the breadbins, dancing across tabletops, stealing pies from under the cooks’ noses. So what does every town need? A good piper to lure them away.

That’s where Maurice comes in. But he’s only a cat (though one that talks), so although he has the ideas, he needs rats and someone to play the pipe. Who better than the kid to play the pipe? And Dangerous Beans. And Peaches. And Hamnpork (who doesn’t really like what’s been happening since The Change; all a rat leader really needs is to be big and stroppy, thinking is just not his thing). And Darktan. And Sardines. And all the others in the Clan.
Then they arrive in Bad Blintz, which is suffering from a plague of rats, and find there are NO rats anywhere (though the two resident rat catchers seem to have plenty of tails to show, at 50 pence per tail).
Someone else has had ideas, and Maurice is not pleased.

A Hat Full of Sky: Discworld Book 32, (Discworld Childrens Book 3) is a Terry Pratchett novel set in the Discworld series. This is a standalone book, so you don’t need to read the other stories in the series in order to read it. We read this one and then moved on to some of the other Discworld books, which both of my kids really enjoy. 
If you’ve never read Pratchett’s writing, you’re missing out. Terry writes books that both children and adults can enjoy, so while this is technically a book designed for youngsters, there’s fantastic character development, world building, and poignant thoughts you’ll be able to enjoy in this one.

“Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra colors. And the people there see you differently, too. Coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving.” ― Terry Pratchett, A Hat Full of Sky

3. Crenshaw

Crenshaw

In her first novel since The One and Only Ivan, winner of the Newbery Medal, Katherine Applegate delivers an unforgettable and magical story about family, friendship, and resilience.
Jackson and his family have fallen on hard times. There’s no more money for rent. And not much for food, either. His parents, his little sister, and their dog may have to live in their minivan. Again.
Crenshaw is a cat. He’s large, he’s outspoken, and he’s imaginary. He has come back into Jackson’s life to help him. But is an imaginary friend enough to save this family from losing everything?
Beloved author Katherine Applegate proves in unexpected ways that friends matter, whether real or imaginary. This title has Common Core connections.

Crenshaw was added to my to-read list when several of my author friends suggested it. Katherine Applegate is one of those writers who manages to suck you into her world in a seemingly effortless way.

“Imaginary friends are like books. We’re created, we’re enjoyed, we’re dog-eared and creased, and then we’re tucked away until we’re needed again.” -Katherine Applegate, Crenshaw




4. A Snicker of Magic


Midnight Gulch used to be a magical place, a town where people could sing up thunderstorms and dance up sunflowers. But that was long ago, before a curse drove the magic away. Twelve-year-old Felicity knows all about things like that; her nomadic mother is cursed with a wandering heart.

But when she arrives in Midnight Gulch, Felicity thinks her luck’s about to change. A “word collector,” Felicity sees words everywhere—shining above strangers, tucked into church eves, and tangled up her dog’s floppy ears—but Midnight Gulch is the first place she’s ever seen the word “home.” And then there’s Jonah, a mysterious, spiky-haired do-gooder who shimmers with words Felicity’s never seen before, words that make Felicity’s heart beat a little faster.

Felicity wants to stay in Midnight Gulch more than anything, but first, she’ll need to figure out how to bring back the magic, breaking the spell that’s been cast over the town . . . and her mother’s broken heart.


A Snicker of Magic not only has an incredible cover, but has an incredible premise, as well. What do you do when you move somewhere new and nothing is what you expect? What do you do when your entire life changes and you have to find a way to make sense of the world around you? As a family that recently moved from one side of the globe to the other, I like these types of books because my kids can really relate to the feeling of being thrust into a new world you aren’t quite expecting.

*

Have you read any of these books with your kids? Which one was your favorite?

Subscription Boxes for Homeschoolers: Little Passports

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Subscription boxes.
Chances are you’ve heard of them. You might even subscribe to one. Maybe you get a makeup subscription box or a snack one, but have you considered using subscription boxes in your homeschooling?
My family primarily uses IXL for our homeschooling right now. We’re a bit eclectic since we have such an emphasis on Chinese and Japanese learning for our kids, but IXL is the primary math/language arts program we use. In addition to that, I like to supplement our homeschooling with things like reading and, you guessed it, subscription boxes.
Little Passports is a box we found out about several years ago. It’s got a huge emphasis on teaching your kids about life in different states and even different countries. When you subscribe, you’ll basically receive an all-encompassing lesson plan and lesson each month. It makes homeschooling with unit studies and topic studies very simple, so if you’re a busy mom who doesn’t want to worry about over-planning, this might be perfect for you.

In addition to a US-based subscription box, Little Passports also has a world geography box, a box specifically for younger kids, and a science box. They also have a ton of great information for homeschoolers and parents on their blog. For example, this post on 9 ways to say thanks around the world can be a great post to share with your kids as they learn about new places!

One of the most important things my kids learned while we were traveling was how to say “thank you.” When you go to a new place, even if you aren’t fluent in the language, just being able to say “hello” and “thank you” in the local language can make traveling much easier. It also shows a huge amount of respect to the people you’re speaking with, so I love that Little Passports has these resources for parents. (So even if you aren’t interested in subscribing, check out their blog! There are tons of free articles you can enjoy and learn from.)

For more information about Little Passports, visit their website. Then leave me a comment and tell me what you thought!

  
Have you ever used a subscription box program to homeschool? Tell me about it in the comments!

Book: Find Your Brave

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Have you ever felt alone?

Have you ever felt like you’re struggling?

Have you ever wondered if you’ll make it through?

Holly Wagner, author of Find Your Brave, knows what it’s like to be afraid. She knows what it’s like to struggle. She knows what it’s like to feel like nothing is going your way.

And she knows what it feels like to put your faith in God to help you through that.

Focusing on the struggles of Paul in Acts 27, Holly leads readers through a journey of faith, strength, and bravery in the face of fear. Filled with poignant stories and insightful anecdotes, Holly helps readers move from fear to fearless as she shows what it takes to stop being afraid and start leaning on God for help.

Book review – The Mandibles: A Family, 2029-2047

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So this showed up in my mailbox a couple weeks ago:

The Mandibles: A Family, 2029-2047

Short version: Worth the read.

Longer version:

Post-apocalyptic fiction is a tough nut to crack. You either go with guns and cannibals, like pretty much everything written since ‘Lucifers Hammer’ or you try to give a less ‘action movie’ apocalypse and deal more with day to day stuff like ‘Alas Babylon’. Some fiction tries to promote an agenda or belief, some just wants a body count. But regardless of the style of apocalypse, if it isn’t well-written no amount of gun-battles and zombies is going to make you want to make it to the final chapter.

“The Mandibles” goes for the ‘economic collapse’ flavor of apocalypse. The US defaults on it’s debts, becomes an economic pariah, and tries to inflate it’s way outta things. In the midst of this are several generations of the Mandible family who were counting on their family wealth but instead watch it vanish. The story covers several members who represent various mindsets and lifestyles…the practical, the pessimistic, the naive, the possibly sociopathic, the intelligentsia, and others.

What I found that made the story compelling was the fairly realistic, as I see it, representation of how daily life changes as the economy disintegrates. Our characters lose jobs, face empty supermarkets, inflated prices, evictions, robberies, medical emergencies, and eventually totalitarian government, all through the course of the book.

Although I disliked the last couple chapters of the book, which seemed to turn a gritty somewhat-reality-based economic collapse into a L. Neil Smith libertarian fantasy, I really enjoyed the book in general. I’ve always said that the hallmark of good fiction is if it makes you think about things in ways that you might not have otherwise. In this case, after reading though the book in one sitting, I found myself inventorying my precious metals stash and resolving to make some future purchases. Yes, I’m that susceptible to things I read.

Gunplay? Virtually none. Cannibal army? None. But was it compelling reading? Absolutely. Only one character in the book seemed to have any grasp of the severity of the situation and the implications for the future. I found myself eagerly waiting for the parts where he would respond to the situations without the normalcy bias everyone else seemed to have.

My impression: good book, enjoyable read, not for the person who wants all-action-all-the-time, but definitely good for someone who wants to imagine a ‘wargame’ of riding out the dollars collapse in a big city.

Review: God of Tomorrow

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How to overcome the fears of today and renew your hope for the future.

That’s the premise of Caleb Kaltenbach’s book, God of Tomorrow: How to Overcome the Fears of Today and Renew Your Hope for the Future. If you’re feeling scared or afraid or worried, you don’t have to because God is in control.

It’s an interesting concept, isn’t it?

Those of us who grew up in church heard this all the time. We watched Veggie Tales and learned that God is bigger than the boogey-man, but learning this as a child and putting it into practice as an adult are two very different things.

God of Tomorrow isn’t just a book about accepting that God is going to take care of you no matter what challenges or crises you might face. It’s about learning to love the people around you regardless of who they are, what they’ve done, and what they believe. It’s about choosing to focus on accepting and loving people instead of instantly condemning people because their ideas are different than you.

Written in a comfortable, down-to-Earth way, God of Tomorrow guides you through a journey of faith as we discover some of the things Caleb has been through, how the world has impacted his family, and what it means to him as a Christian to put God first.

If you’re interested in reading God of Tomorrow, it releases in May! If you check it out, leave me a comment and let me know what your thoughts are.

New Survival Medicine Book (Great Free PDF!)

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Fernando,
We have corresponded slightly in the past but nothing of importance. However, I would like to draw your attention now to a new medical book put out by myself and others, basically a significantly updated version of our original book. Updated as in over 400 pages more.
The book is titled Survival and Austere Medicine: An Introduction 3rd Edition, and it is available for FREE as a pdf document. We also have planned actual printed copies which will be sold royalty-free. In other words no payment to the author team, only the printer. We make absolutely zero profit from this book.
We have one download site up and running and plans for at least 3 more. The 2nd one is due up tonight if all goes well.
Please check this out when you have a chance, and if you like it we can forward the other download sites, and information on the print edition when it is available.
This not some half-baked manual that claims to be ‘the ultimate’ on survival medicine. The authors are all experienced medical people, including doctors and nurses with real world experience outside of the hospital or clinic. The authors represent 3 continents as well. You will find material within that you will not find anywhere else.
Reasonable Rascal
.

Thank you so much RR!

This is a fantastic resource everyone should download and keep a couple copies of.

Please let us know when you have the hard copy version ready as well.

Congratulations on a great job.

Happy New Year everyone!

FerFAL

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

Review: The Chalk Man

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I love a good thriller, so when I stumbled across a copy of The Chalk Man, I knew I needed to read it. Anything with a strong suspenseful plot and a solid story line pique my interest, and this was no different. The Chalk Man is a story of growing up, friendship, discovery, betrayal, and pain all wrapped up in a beautiful package.

The story introduces us to Eddie, who recollects his childhood growing up. Specifically, he remembers the summer when he and his friends began drawing chalk men as coded messages to one another. Something happened, though, that changed everything. Soon, the chalk men began appearing in other places and none of them had drawn them. Soon, the chalk men seem to be leaving messages, and not all of them are good.

While I’m not typically a fan of stories told in the “now” and in the “past,” this book really pulls off the contrast in time periods. The story begins in the modern day and each chapter alternates between thirty years ago and now. Tudor weaves a story of intrigue, suspense, and excitement as we’re forced to figure out who is drawing the stick men – and why.

More importantly, what does it mean for Eddie and his friends?

If you’re looking for an interesting thriller to check out before you head back to school or work after your holiday break, The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor is available on Amazon.

Ready to talk about puberty? Here’s what you need to know

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Are your kids behaving strangely?
Are they more emotional?
Are they smellier than usual?
Are they sleeping a lot?
Are they growing constantly?
Congratulations, fellow mom! You might be the parent of a child going through puberty. As the mom of two little boys who are quickly sprouting into young men, I’ve had a lot of conversations lately about body changes, emotional changes, and what’s going to happen in the weeks, months, and years to come. While I’m certainly not an expert on parenting or puberty, I can tell you that there are a couple of things I’ve learned from all of these talks.
First off, stay calm. Everyone goes through puberty. Everyone sprouts hair. Everyone develops new feelings and has new experiences. You don’t need to panic or freak out when it’s time to talk with your kids. They’re going to go through puberty no matter what, so you might as well be cool about it. Staying calm means they will, too.
It’s also important to be honest. Never lie to your kids. Use proper terminology when you’re speaking about their body parts and give realistic explanations when they ask you questions. Don’t get too goofy or silly when you’re talking. It’s important to give your kids the information and the tools they need to know when it comes to growing up. While it’s fine to crack jokes sometimes, don’t use this as a way to mask nervousness.
Finally, get some resources. I like Guy Stuff: The Body Book For Boys. It’s a simple, easy-to-understand book that’s perfect for my kids, who are eight and 10. We read this together, but I also leave it easily accessible so that if the kids have questions they are too embarrassed to ask, they can look up information in the book. While many puberty books dive into sexual relationships as part of the guide, this one focuses on body parts, changes, and staying healthy. I loved that there are sections on hygiene, too! 

Have you talked with your kids about puberty? What are some of your favorite resources? Leave me a comment and let me know!

Five Great Preparedness Gifts for Under $20

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The Christmas season is here once again and, like most things, that got me to thinking about preparedness.  Whether it’s Christmas, birthdays, or any other reason you may need a gift for a special someone, finding for a quality gift for the preparedness-minded person in their life that won’t break the bank is always a priority.  Here is a quick list of useful and affordable that any prepper would be thankful to receive!

 

 

Sawyer Products Mini Water Filtration System or the LifeStraw Personal Water Filter

 

 

Regardless of which one you choose, you can trust both of these lifesaving water filters with your life.

 

 

Strikeforce Fire Starter

 

 

 

Durable and dependable, this is the only fire starter I will carry in my kit.

 

Morakniv Companion Fixed Blade Outdoor Knife with Sandvik Stainless Steel Blade, 4.1-Inch

 

 

 

Affordable enough to buy several to spread throughout various packs, this reliable survival knife is always a winner.

 

resqme The Original Keychain Car Escape Tool, Made in USA (Red) – Pack of 2

 

 

 

 This lifesaving tool is small and lightweight, but it packs a powerful punch!

 

Shemagh

 

 

 

Endlessly useful and easily affordable, finding a couple of these in your stocking Christmas morning is guaranteed to bring a smile to any prepper’s face.

 

BONUS ITEMS!

 

Practical Prepping:   No Apocalypse Required

 

 

 

A relaxed look at how anyone can quickly go from scared to prepared without taking on a second mortgage.

 

Practical Tactical Quick Start Guide

 

 

 

Exactly what it says.  A practical, jump start for the preparedness novice, or a fast-access reminder for the more seasoned prepper in your life.

 

Nation Makers tactical morale patch

No all heroes wear a cape.  Say “Thank you.” and recognize the every day heroes in your community by giving the Nation Makers patch.

 

 

If you want to better understand my thoughts on personal preparedness, please check out my books HERE and HERE, or wander deeper into this blog.  I hope this website will help you along your way, especially if you’re just getting started.  Keep up with everything Practical Tactical by subscribing to our mailing list and be sure to LIKE, SHARE and FOLLOW us across all of our social media platforms as well.

www.practicaltactical4you.com

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Review: The Startup Way

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Reading books about marketing, business, and growth is a solid way to build a knowledge base. If you’re interested in running your own business, marketing, or even getting a job in a competitive field, it’s important to read regularly. This ensures you’re growing your knowledge base and learning as much as possible when it comes to your chosen field.

The Startup Way: How Modern Companies Use Entrepreneurial Management to Transform Culture and Drive Long-Term Growth is a book designed to help you grow your business with easy-to-understand techniques and real-life stories based on his experiences.

This book is broken into three parts:
The Modern Company
A Road Map for Transformation
The Big Picture

While The Startup Way isn’t a complete guide to transforming your business or your experiences as an entrepreneur, it’s definitely a starting point if you’re interested in discovering methods you can implement in your business in order to grow and expand your products, sales, and productivity.

The entire book is easy-to-navigate and understand. The organizational methods in the book are pretty strong and it’s simple to find the information you’re looking for. That said, I will note that the book frequently references the author’s prior work, The Lean Startup. If you haven’t read that book, I believe you won’t get the complete experience from this one. While I found The Startup Way to be informative, I’d like to read The Lean Startup since so many of the principals introduced in this book seem to stem from the previous work.
Have you read The Startup Way or The Lean Startup? What did you think? Leave me a comment and let me know!

What’s in your SHTF library?

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What’s in your SHTF library? Forrest Garvin “The Prepping Academy” Audio player below! On this episode of the “The Prepping Academy Join Forrest and Tenderfoot will hit the bookshelves and pick their favorite prepping and survival books. Listen to this broadcast or download “What’s in your SHTF library?” in this player! In any crisis situation, … Continue reading What’s in your SHTF library?

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How to Teach 2nd Grade Math Without Going Crazy

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If you’ve been scratching your head trying to remember whether > means “greater than” or “less than,” this is the pots for you.

I know firsthand just how tricky teaching 2nd grade math is. Fortunately, there are a ton of resources available that will help you educate your 2nd grader without going crazy.

Whether or not you used a boxed curriculum, there are a few things that you’ll want to make sure your child masters during his 2nd grade year.

Here is what your child should learn in the 2nd grade:


-Greater than/less than
-How to use a thermometer
-How to use a ruler
-Adding more complex numbers (100s, 10s, etc.)
-Subtracting those same numbers
-Mastering counting to 100 by 10s, 5s, and 2s.
-Basic geometry
-Fractions (what is “half”?)
-Basic money identification (quarters, nickels, etc)
For even more skills that your child should learn in the 2nd grade, check out this list on IXL.

Still want a bit of guidance when it comes to teaching?

No problem!

This post is designed to help you teach 2nd grade math while keeping your cool. If you’re uncomfortable with numbers or you have a difficult time teaching math, your child will pick up on it. He’ll become even more frustrated than he was before. In order to teach math in a way that is fun, relaxing, and educational, check out these resources an tips.

Greater than/less than:


Math is Fun has a helpful chart for remembering which sign means “greater than” and which means “less than.” To simplify it even more? The arrow points at the smaller number!

You can also watch Allie the Alligator with your child for teaching greater than/less than.

How to use a thermometer


For a science and math combined lesson, check out this tutorial that discusses how you can make your own thermometer using household items.

You can also check out Step Into Second Grade and check out this teacher’s classroom project. You can create your own thermometers during an art lesson!

How to use a ruler


Visit Education.com’s free ruler printable worksheet. You can print out your own ruler and let your child measure items on the page. Don’t stop there, though! Measure other things around your house. Need some ideas? Try measuring your doorknobs, your fridge, your child’s hand, or even your pets!

Adding more complex numbers (100s, 10s, etc.)

Visit PreK-8 for some free downloadable worksheets that you can use for teaching addition.

Education.com also has a printable that you can ues.

Watch a YouTube cartoon that explains how to do double digit addition.


Subtracting those same numbers

Read the lesson on double digit subtraction at Cool Math 4 Kids. They break things down and make it SUPER easy to teach your youngster!

Check out this YouTube video that easily explains to children how to subtract from the ones column and then the tens column.


Mastering counting to 100 by 10s, 5s, and 2s.

There is a fantastic song on YouTube that shows how your child can count to 100 by 5s.

This song shows how you can count using 2s, 5s, or 10s.

Not a singer? Practice counting with your child in the car, before bed, or even while you’re eating breakfast.

Basic geometry 

Soft Schools has free geometry worksheets that you can download to use in your home school!

K-5 Math Teaching Resources has several activities that you can do to teach geometry to your student.

Fractions (what is “half”?)

Get your free worksheets to teach fractions at Math Fox. They have a huge selection of worksheets that you can easily print off to use at home.

Math-Salamanders.com also has free worksheets for talking about fractions.


Basic money identification (quarters, nickels, etc)

Check out this YouTube video for teaching about U.S. currency.

You can also check out this video on how to make your own free money game.

Looking for even more tips on keeping your cool while you teach? Check out How to Home School Your Child Without Going Crazy.

What Homeschool Moms Wish You Knew

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Home school moms still get a lot of crap from people about their educational choices. Whether it’s the weird glance from the cashier who innocently asks you, “Shouldn’t your kids be in school today?” or the comment from the mom at the park whose children attend a local private school, there are a lot of things that people don’t really understand about home school moms. Whether or not they want to understand, I don’t know. I do know that, as a home school mom, there are a few things I wish people knew about my choice and my family.

I researched my decision for years.
No one wakes up one day and goes, “I think I’m going to give up a career and that second income so that I can stay home all day long for 12 years.” It just doesn’t happen that way. For most moms, the choice to home school came gradually and was something that was researched, thought about, and prayed over. Parents who home school read books, talked to home school families, researched local schools, and poured over curriculum options before finalizing their decision. It wasn’t an overnight choice and it wasn’t an easy choice.

Home schooling is a sacrifice.
A lot of moms won’t admit this, but the choice to home educate is a sacrificial one. Whether it’s the mom of the family who home educates or the dad, someone has to stay at home with the kids. For most moms, this means giving up a career, it means giving up extra money, it means living in a smaller house, it might even mean giving up on extra luxuries in order to live off a single income. Home schooling requires your entire day, every day. While most home school parents feel like the choice was worth it, it’s not something that’s easy. In fact, there are days when it’s really, really hard.

I worry every day about my children.
Home school parents worry about their kids just like everyone else. Just because someone home educates doesn’t mean that they aren’t concerned about their child’s future or their well-being.

My kids have friends.
Home school children have friends and social lives, but to us, a distraction-free education is important. That means workbooks come first and playtime comes later.

My kid isn’t perfect, but neither is yours.
One of the hardest things about being a home school mom is when my kid makes a mistake. Immediately, the other moms look at me like, “Oh, it’s because you home school.” No, it’s because my child is four. Not all kids are perfect. Whether a child goes to school at home or in a publicly-funded building, kids are going to make mistakes. Kids are going to be shy, scared, brave, dorky, and awkward. No one’s child is perfect.

I’m not sitting at home watching television all day.
While I might be on the computer, it’s probably because we’re watching educational videos or doing research for a project. While home schooling means that I set my own schedule, it doesn’t mean that we don’t have one. Home school moms don’t just sit around watching TV all day, reading magazines, or drinking wine.

I don’t think I’m SuperMom and I don’t think that I’m better than you.
Home school moms don’t think that they’re better than other people. In fact, we’ll be the first ones to admit how imperfect we really are. We make mistakes. We screw up. But you know what? So does everyone. Home education doesn’t mean that I think I’m better than you. It just means that I’ve chosen a different form of education for my child.

I respect your decisions.
No matter how you choose to educate your child, we can still be friends. Each parent has to choose the style of education that works best for their family. Home schooling is what works for us. If public, private, or charter school education works for your kid, that’s great. Don’t try to convince me that I’m ruining my child by home schooling him. I’m not, and you’re not ruining your child, either.

Want to find out more about how home school moms manage it? Check out How to Home School Your Child Without Going Crazy.

Living on $30 a week and other ways to save money

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Maybe you’re tired of overspending.
Maybe $30 a week for a household budget won’t work for your family. 
Maybe you’re just one person and that’s a reasonable goal. 
Maybe you’re really into coupons, but you want to figure out how you can save even more.
One of the most important parts about running a household is learning how to minimize the amount of money you spend and figuring out exactly how you can start to save money. In today’s blog post, you’ll find an assortment of resources designed to help you start minimizing the amount of money you spend and helping you learn how to save.
Whether you’re living on a single income, you’re trying to save for a specific goal, or you just want to be more conscious with your budget, there are several important things you need to know about saving money.
First off, keep in mind that saving money takes time. It’s not something that’s going to happen after a single day of not spending. You’ll need to give yourself reasonable goals and the time to reach those goals. While it would be great if saving money happened overnight, it doesn’t really work that way.
Also understand that sometimes, there are going to be setbacks. Maybe you’ll start saving up and in a few weeks, your car will break down. This can make saving a bit more difficult, but not impossible. Just keep going. Do your best, and even when stuff happens, try to stay focused on your goal.
Finally, remember to constantly re-evaluate your goals. Can you save more? Can you save in different ways? Are there some areas of your budget you haven’t balanced, but need to? Don’t be afraid to re-evaluate the goals you’re setting and how they’re working for your family.
If you’re ready to find out more about saving money, here are some fantastic resources I’ve rounded up. Some of these are free blog posts and a couple of them are books. Check them out, and then leave me a comment and let me know what you think!

20 Ways to Save Money When Living Paycheck-to-Paycheck

Fewer Mouths To Feed Author Robert Bratyanski

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Fewer Mouths To Feed… Author Robert Bratyanski Forrest Garvin “The Prepping Academy” Audio player below! This week on The Prepping Academy Radio Show Forrest and Tender Foot will be joined by Robert Bratyanski. Robert, former US Army medic, is a personal friend and fellow member of the Carolina Preppers Network. Listen to this broadcast or download … Continue reading Fewer Mouths To Feed Author Robert Bratyanski

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100 Best Survival Books of All Time

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If you’re reading this, you probably already know the importance of studying books about emergency preparedness and survival, so I won’t bore you with a long intro about why you should read. Instead, I’ll just briefly explain how I came up with this list. Over the past 8 years or so, I’ve read and enjoyed […]

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Did Al-Qaeda Read Tom Clancy

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During high school, I was a Tom Clancy fanatic. I was reading his early books as they were new and on the Best Seller lists (yes I am that old). Tom Clancy’s writing style is intense. He goes into incredible detail about his characters, military equipment and the political world. Nothing I had read to that point in my life even compared to his writing.
Tom Clancy
But after high school I went to college for a while then off to the military. I lost track of Clancy’s books. It wasn’t until much later, after being married and having a kid before I picked up another one of his books. By then several movies had been made from his books.

These days I listen to a lot of books via Audible. A few weeks ago I picked up the next book in the series just to listen to something different. Debt of Honor was what I bought. As usual it started out slow. Building on the existing characters and introduced new ones. Three-quarters of the way through the book, the main story seemed to be wrapping up. But then it happened, a HUGE plot twist and honestly I stopped the book upset. Not because of the plot twist. But because I was honestly disappointed by Tom Clancy for what he wrote. (Spoiler Alert) You see in the book a single airline pilot flies a fuel heavy jetliner into the U.S. Capitol during a joint session of Congress attended by most senior U.S. government officials, including the President. Seriously?! Why would Clancy use very similar events of 9-11 in a book as part of the plot?

But that wasn’t the case. Debt of Honor was published in 1994. Seven years before 2011. SEVEN YEARS!

There was a lot of press about this sometime back. I missed all of this.

I finished the book. But ever since then I have wondered if back in the mid 1990s, there was a Tom Clancy fan in the Middle East. Who approached Osama Bin Laden and told them “Hey.. I have an idea”.

I’m still a huge Tom Clancy fan.

Tom Clancy’s Early Books

From Wikipedia:

The Hunt for Red October (1984)Amazon
Clancy’s first published novel. CIA analyst Jack Ryan assists in the defection of a respected Soviet naval captain, along with the most advanced ballistic missile submarine of the Soviet fleet. The movie (1990) stars Alec Baldwin as Ryan and Sean Connery as Captain Ramius. U.S, submarine commander Bart Mancuso is introduced in this novel, and nearly every subsequent book has Mancuso in ever increasing command of U.S. submarine forces. U.S. naval aviator Robby Jackson is also introduced, who later in the series succeeds Jack Ryan as President of the United States.
Red Storm Rising (1986)Amazon
War between NATO and USSR. The basis of the combat game of the same name, this book is not a member of the Ryan story series (although a protagonist of the story has many similarities with Jack Ryan). Cowritten with Larry Bond.
Patriot Games (1987)Amazon
Patriot Games chronologically predates the first book that Clancy wrote, The Hunt for Red October. Jack Ryan foils an attack in London on the Prince and Princess of Wales by the “Ulster Liberation Army”. The ULA then attacks Ryan’s Maryland home while he is hosting the Prince and Princess for dinner. The movie stars Harrison Ford as Ryan and Samuel L. Jackson as Robby Jackson.
The Cardinal of the Kremlin (1988)Amazon
The sequel to “The Hunt for Red October.” First appearance of John Clark and Sergey Golovko. Ryan leads a CIA operation which forces the head of the KGB to defect. Other elements include anti-satellite lasers and other SDI-type weapons, and the Soviet war in Afghanistan. Major Alan Gregory is introduced here. (He appears later, updating SAM software in The Bear and the Dragon). Colonel Bondarenko also is introduced here. (He appears in later books offering advice to Golovko in “Executive Orders” and commanding the Russian Army defenses against China in its sequel “The Bear and the Dragon”.)
Clear and Present Danger (1989)Amazon
The President authorizes the CIA to use American military forces in a covert war against cocaine producers in Colombia. The operation is betrayed. Ryan meets John Clark as they lead a mission to rescue abandoned soldiers. Domingo “Ding” Chavez (Clark’s protege in later novels) is one of the rescued soldiers. The 1994 film stars Harrison Ford as Ryan, Willem Dafoe as Clark, and Raymond Cruz as Chavez.
The Sum of All Fears (1991)Amazon
Arab terrorists find a nuclear weapon that had been lost by Israel, and use it to attack the United States. This nearly triggers a war between the U.S. and the Soviet Union, due to the incompetence of the new President and his mistress with an anti-Ryan agenda. Ryan intervenes to avert the war. The 2002 film stars Ben Affleck as Ryan and Liev Schreiber as Clark, and changes the identity and motivation of the terrorists to neo-Nazis.
Without Remorse (1993)Amazon
Without Remorse takes place during the Vietnam War, when Jack Ryan was a teenager. Ex-SEAL John Clark (then John Kelly) fights a one-man war against drug dealers in Baltimore, attracting the attention of Jack’s father Emmett, a Baltimore police detective. He also helps plan and execute a raid on a prisoner-of-war camp in North Vietnam. Clark joins the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).
Debt of Honor (1994)Amazon
A secret cabal of extreme nationalists gains control of Japan (having developed some nuclear weapons), and start a war with the U.S. Ryan, now National Security Advisor, and Clark and Chavez, agents in Japan, help win the war. The Vice President resigns in a scandal, and the President appoints Ryan to replace him. A vengeful, die-hard Japanese airline pilot then crashes a jetliner into the U.S. Capitol during a joint session of Congress attended by most senior U.S. government officials, including the President. Ryan thus becomes the new President through succession.

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Blast from the past: “eBooks or Printed media, which is best for a Survival Library?”

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Hello my friend and welcome back! Today I have a blast from the past for you and I would really like to hear you thoughts on it.  eBooks or Printed media?  This is a…

The post Blast from the past: “eBooks or Printed media, which is best for a Survival Library?” appeared first on American Preppers Online.

Simple Faraday Cage

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A homemade Faraday cage that will protect life-saving and useful electronics from an EMP (Electromagnetic Pulse) event is something that every prepper should have. It doesn’t need to be fancy, or complicated. It doesn’t need to be an entire room. There are DIY simple faraday cage designs that can be built quickly, with supplies on hand, and then kept in your garage, basement, attic, or vehicle as storage containers for those sensitive machines that you want to protect.

Let’s discuss EMPs, and why we need to shield our equipment from them.

What is an EMP?

An EMP (Electromagnetic Pulse) is a short burst of electromagnetic energy that is powerful enough to destroy electronic equipment. There are three major sources of these bursts. First is a very large solar flare from the Sun. Luckily large solar flares are not at all common and are very directional. So the likelihood of one big enough to affect us and aimed directly at Earth is pretty small, but still possible.

Second source of an EMP is from a nuclear warhead detonating on land. This would be a fairly contained EMP that radiates away from the warhead impact location. Though significant, the radiation effects of the nuclear warhead would be much more devastating than the EMP would be.

The third and scariest of the possible EMP options is a high-altitude electromagnetic pulse (HEMP). This is where a nuclear warhead is detonated hundreds of miles above the Earth’s surface. There is little to no radiation affects from these blasts. But the EMP effect is massive to fragile electronics below, for a range of hundreds to thousands of miles depending on the size of the blast. One large HEMP could affect all of Europe.

Any of these three sources would seriously compromise our modern infrastructure by destroying electronics that run our grid, including power stations, sewage facilities, modern airplanes, and modern vehicles. If you want to get a general idea of what life would be like after such an attack, take a look at some of the books on the Prepper Fiction page.

Michael Faraday simple faraday cage inventor

What is a Faraday Cage?

A Faraday cage–also know as a Faraday shield–really isn’t that complicated. Named after the English scientist Michael Faraday, who invented them in 1836, a simple Faraday cage is just an enclosure made of a non-conductive material, that is then enclosed in a structure that is made of a conductive material. You could simply wrap a cardboard box in several layers of aluminum foil and make a aluminum foil Faraday cage. Or you could go really big and put cardboard boxes inside of a large metal shipping container to make a shipping container Faraday cage.

A Faraday shield could be small, enclosing only one item. Or, you could build a mid-sized one for each room. Maybe a larger one for your garage. Let’s take a look at three simple Faraday cage options.

3 Simple Faraday Cage Options

Metal Trash Can Faraday Cage

First let’s make a simple Faraday cage out of a standard metal trash can. I stopped by the local big box hardware store and bought a 31 gallon metal trash can and a slightly smaller 20 gallon plastic trash can. I made sure the height and diameter were similar, with the plastic can being just small enough to fit easily into the metal can with the metal lid fitting snugly. I had to do a little bit of prepper engineering by removing plastic handles so I could insert the whole plastic trash can inside the metal trash can. Both lids close correctly. It is really important to have a tight seal of the outside aluminum can.

I’ve seen several sites that use cardboard or carpet pieces to make similar Faraday cages. But I really think that the ease of a second plastic trash can is the way to go.

I made a Instructable that walks through the whole creation process.

Simple Faraday Cage

Instructable - Simple Faraday Cage
Click!

This will hold a lot of stuff and protect electronics from EMP. But will also a nice portable Faraday cage.


Ammo Can Faraday Cage

Second we can build an ammo can Faraday cage. One thing about the military is that they have some really cool containers that are made to last. I didn’t realize while I was in the Army but all of the important equipment like night vision goggles, special weapon sights and shoulder-fired anti-tank weapons had custom containers. They were made of aluminum with cut out foam inside to ensure things wouldn’t move. But now I know they were also pretty simple Faraday cages. Military ammo cans are inexpensive and easy to find.

Here are a few links to help you make your own:


Faraday Bags

Lastly Amazon has some pretty cool Faraday bags for sale. There are some inexpensive Faraday bags that basically look like really thick static bags which computer parts are shipped in. Also there is a really nice duffle bag that is specially lined to protect against EMP attacks.

Conclusion

Once you know how to make a simple Faraday cage, it really isn’t too hard to build your own. I think it would be great to see some that other people have built. Leave comments or send me an email and I will add them to this post.

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Preppers University – Sign Up Now

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Preppers UniversityFounded by Lisa Bedford of The Survival Mom fame and prolific writer, Daisy Luther, The Organic Prepper, Preppers University is a unique and interactive online school designed for a small group of highly focused students, willing to commit their time and energy to ensure their homes and families are prepared.

Preppers University Instructors

A really impressive list of instructors has been gathered to teach and be available for questions. Click through some of their web sites and look at the books that this group have authored. This is the best online resource I have seen to date!

Lisa Bedford, The Survival Mom: Lisa is the founder of The Survival Mom blog, an author, speaker, and will teach webinars throughout the course.


Daisy Luther is a prolific writer and author and is Co-Founder of Preppers University. Daisy’s expertise lies in the practical application of preparedness and common sense survival. She will be teaching webinars throughout the term.


Dr. Arthur T. Bradley is nationally known as an expert in EMP research. He has written numerous books, both fiction and non-fiction, and joins us to talk about EMP preparedness.


​Fernando Aguirre is better known to some as FerFAL, author, blogger, and survivor of Argentina’s economic decline and collapse. Fernando will join us to talk about realities of an economic collapse.


Jim Cobb is the author of 9 books related to survival and preparedness. He joins Prep U students to teach Suburban/Urban Survival and Security. Jim is a private investigator and is the lead consultant with Disaster Prep Consultants.


Mark “Merriwether” Vorderbruggen Ph.D. has been a forager all his life. Author of Idiot’s Guide to Foraging, he’ll be teaching how to harvest nature’s free food to supplement your food storage pantry.


Herbalist Cat Ellis shares her experience and expertise in a session focused on natural remedies for times when there is no doctor. Cat is a blogger, author, and hosts 2 podcasts.


Patrice Lewis, well-known columnist for World Net Daily, author, and blogger at Rural-Revolution will teach our Intensive students the realities of rural life. Our students will leave her session with a thorough understanding of the pros and cons of a rural homestead.


Cherie Norton is an NRA Firearms Instructor and an avid homesteader. She is a long-time advocate of the Second Amendment and will be presenting a webinar about keeping yourself safe through situational awareness.


Tammy Trayer is a freelance writer and author, radio show host and homesteader. She’ll talks to students about living of the grid, and surviving with no power.


Lisa Egan is a researcher and writer. She has a BS in Health Science. Lisa has worked as both a personal trainer and nutritionist. Her experiences help to give lots of information when she talks about bug out boot camps in her webinar.


Selco is the founder of SHTF School. Join him when he discuses what it’s really like to live in a war-torn country.


Steven Konkoly graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 1993, receiving a bachelor of science in English literature. He is the best selling author of multiple books including the recently released Fractured State books. In his webinar, he’ll talks all about Pandemics.


A. American is the author of the Survivalist hit series. He is a prepper, survivalist and avid outdoors men with a wide knowledge of medicinal and edible plants.


Rick Austin is the author of Secret Garden of Survival. He is a researcher, farmer, and survivalist and will join us to teach you how to grow a plentiful and sustainable food supply that is camouflaged and hides in plain sight.


Brandon Smith is the founder and chief strategist behind the Alternative Market Project. He’ll join students in an informative webinar.


Tim Young is author of the bestselling book How to Make Money Homesteading, as well as many other books that can help people enjoy a more prepared and self-sufficient lifestyle.

Preppers University – Sign Up Now

Preppers University

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Pandemic Preparedness Guide – Review

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There has been a lot of information regarding the possibilities of a global pandemic. While this is something to be concerned about, not a lot of people have been able to explain exactly why. The Read More …

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Specialized Bug Out Bags (And What’s Inside Them)

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featured_man_mountain

bug_out_essentials_stuff‘Bug out bags’ are put together to be grabbed in a hurry. Their use stems from the bags issued by militaries to their soldiers in field situations, and it should contain everything you need to sustain yourself in an emergency situation for at least 72 hours. Ideally, every member of your group or family should have their own bug out bag with their own supplies: The more you have as a group, the better your chances of survival will be.

By Alex Coyne, a contributing author of SurvivalCache and SHTFBlog.com

Most bug out bags are aimed at meeting the most basic survival needs: That is, they contain a bit of everything for when you need to grab and go, but what if you have some more specialized needs, for example access to technology or your family’s important documents stored separately?

Here’s a look at some specialized bug out bags to go with your main kit, customized for more specific needs. (Note: Most of these are just as useful for camping or hiking as they are for grabbing in an emergency.)

Oh, yeah, and take a look at this link on YouTube for what Dr. Sheldon Cooper from The Big Bang Theory keeps in his

#1: The Medic Bag

1_med_bagThe medic bag contains your group or family’s medical supplies. Include a laminated card with each member’s details and medical history; be sure to list their full name, blood type, next-of-kin with the most recent contact details and their allergies. Your kit should also contain antibiotics, painkillers, alcohol, bandages, stitches, burn gel and/or cream, clean wipes, surgical scissors, a scalpel, cotton wool, a syringe (and the knowledge to use it!) and any other medical supplies you would normally keep in your first aid kit or might come in handy where you’re going.  Prescription medication (for chronic conditions) can be arranged in advance with your doctor or pharmacist.

#2: The Bag of Documents

Your family’s important documents can include birth certificates, passports, doctor’s reports, financial information and wills; this is by no means an exhaustive list. We highly recommend that documents like these are always kept organized neatly in the same place, with several digital backups. Consider backing up your information on DVD or Blu-Ray to keep in your bag of documents. Store hard copy documents in plastic sleeves. Make sure your bag can withstand elements like water, and make sure you don’t store your documents with (or next to) anything that can catch fire or explode.

Related: Building a Natural Emergency Shelter With No Tools

#3: The Chef’s Bag

fallkniven_phk_professional_hunting_knife_gutting-birdThere’s likely someone in your group or family who’s been appointed the head chef, and a chef – especially one on the road – could do with some decent tools. The chef’s bag is customized to hold all the tools a chef might need in the field, and this will be up to personal preference. Be sure to ask them what tools they simply can’t do without. Many tools have a portable version. Take a look at the Glamping Fold Up Pan and the Camp Chef Knife Set. The chef’s bag should also contain other chef’s essentials like their most used spices and utensils.

#4: The Hiker’s Bag

The hiker’s bag should be taken if you’re planning on going on a hiking trip. Practicality is your main goal here, and you’re looking to cover all of the bases. Take enough food to sustain yourself on the walk and for a while after should you get stuck, take along your first-aid basics, a knife, a fold-up walking stick, plenty of water and purification tablets, a map and compass and a fire-starter kit. Again, this is not an exhaustive list, just the basics.

#5: The Mechanic’s Kit

The mechanic’s kit is great for keeping in your car by default, and it’s essential if you’re going to be stuck somewhere for a while. Put simply, it’s for fixing things. A wide variety of things. The mechanic’s kit should contain the most portable tools you can find – a simple online search on Amazon will give you hundreds of options for portable tools – and odds-and-ends like wire, cable ties, glue, duct tape, rope, nails, screws, nuts and bolts. Keep documents like your car’s repair handbook (or, say, a general book on DIY and car repair) with this too: Digital backups are available, will take up much less space and can be handy should anyone else who isn’t as handy end up with the mechanic’s kit.

Check Out: Fortifying Your Home

#6: The Herbal Healer

Waterford_Medicinal_Survival_Plants_of_the_Rocky_MountainsWaterford_Press_berries_closeAncient human groups consisted of hunter-gatherers, and modern humans are no different. The herbal healer’s bag is for the gatherer or natural healer, and should contain everything they need to gather, preserve and prepare herbs. Take this along for a hiking trip or when you go out to gather herbs, plants or fruits. A sharp, versatile knife is essential; some cords and clothespins (useful for drying), containers and bags for collecting samples; gloves; a fold-up camping shovel; seeds for starting a garden; plant nutrients; an empty spray bottle; sanitized water and wipes (for various and fairly obvious reasons); alcohol (for tinctures and sanitization). The herbal bag will likely also contain a collection of common herbs that have already been collected: These are up to you. Again, a disc with your library of plant books (with pictures for identification) should go with your kit.

#7: The Tech Junkie’s Kit

Don’t discount the usefulness of technology in a survival situation: As a journalist working online, I realize the value of connectivity. The tech junkie’s kit should be exceptionally well-padded and contain a laptop that can withstand some damage (laptops like the Sony Vaio are small yet durable), replacement cables, an additional camera (of higher quality), blank DVD’s, spare parts, an operating system on DVD (should you need to re-install your system on the go), a power bank or solar power kit, a screwdriver kit, a USB dongle (yes, even if you have a router), a mouse, backup batteries, a backup celllphone and a signal strengthener. (At the very least.)

What do you have in your bug out bag? Have you learned to add anything from yours by reading this article? Use the comments to let us know your thoughts.

7 Books That Show Us How To Fix Our Broken World – One Garden And Community At A Time

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The knowledge in these books have the potential to feed the world, regenerate and restore the soil, reforest deserts, and lead the way to permanent food security for mankind.

Bold claims, I know, but I believe them to be true because many of these books are based on what has already happened. Some of the books do include grand visions but the solutions they present are not science fiction, the answers are found in our own history.

The history of mankind shows that a civilization can only be as stable as its food supply. When the food supply falters, be it due to natural disaster or man-made destruction of the top soil, the civilization goes down the drain with it. The result? War, violence, starvation as well as financial, social and cultural collapse, and so on.

What led me to these seven books was a photo and mention on the Facebook page of Ben Falk, founder of Whole Systems Design and author of The Resilient Farm and Homestead (thanks for letting me use the photo!). Ben is a true self-reliance and permaculture pioneer on his resilient homestead in Vermont, and when he said that “there are seven books that NEVER get put away here” because “they are turned to so often”, that got my attention.

Here are shortcuts to the book descriptions below:


1. A Sand County Almanac by Aldo Leopold

2. The One-Straw Revolution by Masanobu Fukuoka

3. Tree Crops – A Permanent Agriculture by J. Russel Smith

4. Farmers of Forty Centuries: Organic Farming in China, Korea and Japan by F.H. King

5. The Timeless Way of Building by Christopher Alexander

6. A Pattern Language by Christopher Alexander

7. Tending the Wild by M. Kat Anderson


Some of the books I’ve read and know from before and they’re all what I consider game changers in my own search for knowledge, and some of the books were new to me.

Without further ado, here are seven books every homesteader and farmer should read. The same goes for every permaculture designer, architect, city planner, politician, president, change maker, activist, and so on who cares about this planet’s future.

1. A Sand County Almanac by Aldo Leopold

Considered by many as the father of wildlife management and of the United States’ wilderness system, Aldo Leopold was a conservationist, forester, philosopher, educator, writer, and outdoor enthusiast.

Considered by many as the father of wildlife management and of the United States’ wilderness system, Aldo Leopold was a conservationist, forester, philosopher, educator, writer, and outdoor enthusiast.

“There are some who can live without wild things, and some who cannot. These essays are the delights and dilemmas of one who cannot.” – Aldo Leopold

First published in 1949, A Sand County Almanac combines some of the finest nature writing since Thoreau with an outspoken and highly ethical regard for America’s relationship to the land.

A Sand County AlmanacBut it would be a mistake to describe this book as “nature writing” per se, or of that genre. As one reviewer writes, “It is a series of essays in wonderful prose in which nature, outdoor settings or situations provide the backdrop. But it is not written as a naturalist droning about the wonders of some aspect of nature. It is an inspired and deeply insightful description, by a man who clearly has a deep understanding of how nature works, about the ethical dimensions of our relationship with the land and our environment generally.”

Through science, history, humor, and prose, Leopold utilizes A Sand County Almanac and its call for a Land Ethic to communicate the true connection between people and the natural world, with the hope that the readers will begin to treat the land with the love and respect it deserves.

“One of the penalties of an ecological education is that one lives alone in a world of wounds. Much of the damage inflicted on land is quite invisible to the layman. An ecologist must either harden his shell and make believe that the consequences of science are none of his business, or he must be the doctor who sees the marks of death in a community that believes itself well, and does not want to be told otherwise. One sometimes envies the ignorance of those who rhapsodize about a lovely countryside in process of losing its topsoil, or afflicted with some degenerative disease in its water systems, fauna or flora.” – Aldo Leopold

Leopold’s legacy continues to inform and inspire us to see the natural world “as a community to which we belong.”

Check out A Sand County Almanac on Amazon


2. The One-Straw Revolution by Masanobu Fukuoka

Masanobu Fukuoka, a Japanese farmer and philosopher celebrated for his natural farming and re-vegetation of desertified lands.

Masanobu Fukuoka, a Japanese farmer and philosopher celebrated for his natural farming and re-vegetation of desertified lands.

“The ultimate goal of farming is not the growing of crops, but the cultivation and perfection of human beings.” – Masanobu Fukuoka

Masanobu Fukuoka’s manifesto about farming, eating, and the limits of human knowledge presents a radical challenge to the global systems we rely on for our food. At the same time, it is a spiritual memoir of a man whose innovative system of cultivating the earth reflects a deep faith in the wholeness and balance of the natural world.

The One-Straw RevolutionAs Wendell Berry writes in his preface, the book “is valuable to us because it is at once practical and philosophical. It is an inspiring, necessary book about agriculture because it is not just about agriculture.”

In essence, the nugget of his wisdom is that, instead of struggling to control and command nature, we must learn to work with and learn from nature.

Trained as a scientist, Fukuoka rejected both modern agribusiness and centuries of agricultural practice, deciding instead that the best forms of cultivation mirror nature’s own laws. Over the next three decades he perfected his so-called “do-nothing” technique: commonsense, sustainable practices that all but eliminate the use of pesticides, fertilizer, tillage, and perhaps most significantly, wasteful effort.

“I believe that a revolution can begin from this one strand of straw. Seen at a glance, this rice straw may appear light and insignificant. Hardly anyone would believe that it could start a revolution. But I have come to realize the weight and power of this straw. For me, this revolution is very real.” — Masanobu Fukuoka, The One-Straw Revolution

Check out The One-Straw Revolution on Amazon


3. Tree Crops – A Permanent Agriculture by J. Russel Smith

From J. Russell Smith's book: A few of the many photos from around the globe

From J. Russell Smith’s book: A few of the many photos from around the globe

“Why are the hills of West China ruined, while the hills of Corsica are, by comparison, an enduring Eden? The answer is plain. Northern China knows only the soil-destroying agriculture of the plowed hillside. Corsica, on the contrary, has adapted agriculture to physical conditions; she practices the soil-saving tree-crops type of agriculture.” – J. Russell Smith

With this question J. Russell Smith sets the tone for his book Tree Crops – A Permanent Agriculture. This book reflects a lifetime of research around the world and personal trials on the author’s farm in Virginia on the uses of perennial tree crops for animal and human food.

Tree Crops - A Permanent AgricultureSmith saw trees as “the natural engines of food production” for hill lands that we should put to work; to produce an abundance of food and fodder and to preserve the soil for future generations, permanently.

During his travels around the world saw many examples of this permanent type of agriculture, for example the chestnut forests of Corsica. He notes in his book: “These grafted chestnut orchards produced an annual crop of food for men, horses, cows, pigs, sheep, and goats, and a by-crop of wood. Thus, for centuries, trees upon this steep slope had supported the families that lived in the Corsican villages. The mountainside was uneroded, intact, and capable of continuing indefinitely its support for the generations of men.”

Here’s David Holmgren, one of the co-originators of the Permaculture design methodology, talking about this 1929 classic:

I’ll leave you with a quote describing his vision, at once practical and lovely:

“I see a million hills green with crop-yielding trees and a million neat farm homes snuggled in the hills. These beautiful tree farms hold the hills from Boston to Austin, from Atlanta to Des Moines. The hills of my vision have farming that fits them and replaces the poor pasture, the gullies, and the abandoned lands that characterize today so large a part of these hills.

These ideal farms have their level and gently sloping land protected by mangum terraces and are intensively cultivated — rich in yields of alfalfa, corn, clover, legumes, wheat, and garden produce. This plow land is the valley bottoms, level hill tops, the gentle slopes, and flattened terraces on the hillsides. The unplowed lands are partly shaded by cropping trees — mulberries, persimmons, honey locust, grafted black walnut, grafted heart nut, grafted hickory, grafted oak, and other harvest-yielding trees. There is better grass beneath these trees than covers the hills today.” – J. Russell Smith

You can download a PDF-version of Tree Crops for free here (1929 edition), read it online, or check it out on Amazon if you prefer a printed version (it’s pricey though).


4. Farmers of Forty Centuries: Organic Farming in China, Korea and Japan by F.H. King

Farmers of Forty Centuries

“Between these two books [Farmers of Forty Centuries and Tree Crops], you’ve got solutions to most of what faces humanity, food-wise. Read them. Be inspired.” – Ben Falk, Whole Systems Design

For more than 4,000 years, Asian farmers worked the same fields repeatedly without sapping the land’s fertility and without applying artificial fertilizer.

How did they accomplish this miraculous feat?

Farmers of Forty CenturiesThat’s what author Franklin Hiram King describes in his book Farmers of Forty Centuries, first published by his wife in 1911 after his death.

King traveled to China, Korea and Japan in the early 1900s. The purpose of his trip was to study how the extremely dense populations of the Far East could produce massive amounts of food century after century without depleting their soils.

What he discovered was a highly sophisticated system of water management, crop rotation, interplanting and rational utilization of ecological relationships among farm plants, animals and people.

The book has become a classic of the permaculture/sustainable economics movement for several reasons, as noted by a reviewer:

  1. It dispels the myth that fossil fuel-free agriculture will produce much lower yields than industrial farming. Without access to oil and natural-gas based pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers, agriculture will be much more labor-intensive. However with global population at more than seven billion (as of last October), the world seems to have no shortage of human labor.
  2. Farmers of Forty Centuries paints a detailed picture of tried and true regional models of food, fuel, and construction materials production, as well as regional water and human waste management.
  3. It provides detailed descriptions, almost in cookbook fashion, of a broad range of permaculture and terraquaculture techniques.

You can download a PDF-version of the book for free here, as various ebook formats here, read it online here, or get a printed book on Amazon.


5. The Timeless Way of Building by Christopher Alexander

Cristopher Alexander

Cristopher Alexander

“There is one timeless way of building. It is thousands of years old, and the same today as it has always been. The great traditional buildings of the past, the villages and tents and temples in which man feels at home, have always been made by people who were very close to the center of this way. And as you will see, this way will lead anyone who looks for it to buildings which are themselves as ancient in their form as the trees and hills, and as our faces are.” – Cristopher Alexander

The Timeless Way of BuildingThe Timeless Way of Building is the introductory volume in the Center for Environmental Structure series. In it Christopher Alexander presents a new theory of architecture, building, and planning which has at its core that age-old process by which the people of a society have always pulled the order of their world from their own being.

The book explains the idea of patterns in architecture, and how we can use these patterns to build and maintain healthy living environments. As one reviewer notes on the term ‘pattern’, “there are certain patters in buildings. When the pattern works the building is pleasing. Otherwise it isn’t. These patterns are not architectural design plans, they are instead organic, instinctive, feeling-based relationships.”

[..] despite reading and re-reading the first half of the Timeless Way of Building about 10-15 times since first doing so in college, I am still enthralled at the depth of what Alexander is conveying in this work. Anyone who finds themselves amidst the planning stages of your houses or landscapes: I cannot encourage you enough to spend some real time with his work.” – Ben Falk, Whole Systems Design

Check out The Timeless Way of Building on Amazon (or your local library, the book is quite expensive).


6. A Pattern Language by Christopher Alexander

Patterns

“If you are interested in making great spaces – especially homes – and can only spend time with one book, this would be our pick. Read it and read it again. The kind of book you’ll never be “done” with.” – Ben Falk, Whole Systems Design

Also by Cristopher Alexander, A Pattern Language is the second book in the Center for Environmental Structure series and takes a more practical approach compared to The Timeless Way of Building. The book presents a series of “patterns” that the authors believe must be present in order for an environment to be pleasing, comfortable, or in their words, “alive.”

A Pattern LanguageThe “patterns” are answers to design problems, such as:

  • How high should a window sill be?
  • How many stories should a building have?
  • How should the light fall within a home?
  • Where should the windows be placed?
  • How much space in a neighborhood should be devoted to grass and trees?

More than 250 of the patterns in this pattern language are given in the book: each consists of a problem statement, a discussion of the problem with an illustration, and a solution.

As the authors say in their introduction, many of the patterns are archetypal, so deeply rooted in the nature of things that it seemly likely that they will be a part of human nature, and human action, as much in five hundred years as they are today.

Check out the book on Amazon (or your local library, the book is quite expensive).


7. Tending the Wild by M. Kat Anderson

Cahuilla woman

Cahuilla woman storing acorns for food

“Nature really misses us,” laments M. Kat Anderson. “We no longer have a relationship with plants and animals, and that’s the reason why they’re going away.”

This book works not only as a history of indigenous horticulture in California, but also as a beginners manual for those who seek to understand more about sustainable, indigenous land management, gleaned in part from interviews and correspondence with Native Americans who recall what their grandparents told them about how and when areas were burned, which plants were eaten and which were used for basketry, and how plants were tended.

Tending the WildThe bulk of Tending the Wild describes how the California Indians tended the land. They did not merely wander across the countryside in hopes of randomly discovering plant and animal foods. They had an intimate, sacred relationship with the land, and they tended it in order to encourage the health of their closest relatives — the plant and animal communities upon which they depended.

Tending the Wild is an important book, because it presents us with stories of a way of life that worked, and worked remarkably well, for countless generations. This is precious knowledge for us to contemplate, as our own society is rapidly circling the drain, and our need for remembering healthy old ideas has never been greater.

“Through coppicing, pruning, harrowing, sowing, weeding, burning, digging, thinning, and selective harvesting, they [California natives] encouraged desired characteristics of individual plants, increased populations of useful plants, and altered the structures and compositions of plant communities. Regular burning of many types of vegetation across the state created better habitat for game, eliminated brush, minimized potential for catastrophic fires, and encouraged diversity of food crops. These harvest and management practices, on the whole, allowed for sustainable harvest of plants over centuries and possibly thousands of years.“

In this book we come to see California’s indigenous people as active agents of environmental change and stewardship. Tending the Wild persuasively argues that this traditional ecological knowledge is essential if we are to successfully meet the challenge of living sustainably.

“The map in there of California cultural regions before colonization is insanely amazing.” – Ben Falk, Whole Systems Design

Check out Tending the Wild on Amazon


What All These Books Have In Common

The one big takeaway from all of these books, in my mind, is that they irrefutably show us that there are alternative futures possible for humanity. There are ways we can feed ourselves, clothe ourselves and build our homes without depleting the soil and destroying nature.

But if the knowledge in these books can “fix” the world, why did not previous generations get it done? After all, some of these books are over 100 years old.

The answer is simple. As Wendell Berry writes in the foreword to a newer edition of Tree Crops:

“The minds that have dominated agriculture since 1929 when Tree Crops was first published, have been little interested in conserving either the land or the people on the land. They have, Heaven knows, seen no visions of “a million neat farm homes snuggled in the hills.” A farming system in which millions of small landowners would manage devotedly and skillfully a diversified, locally-adapted system of tree crops, pastures, animals, and row crops has been simply unthinkable to them.”

Or as permaculture co-originator Bill Mollison says in Permaculture: A Designers’ Manual:

Bill Mollison“We know how to solve every food, clean energy, and sensible shelter problem in every climate; we have already invented and tested every necessary technique and technical device, and have access to all the biological material that we could ever use.

The tragic reality is that very few sustainable systems are designed or applied by those who hold power, and the reason for this is obvious and simple: to let people arrange their own food, energy, and shelter is to lose economic and political control over them. We should cease to look to power structures, hierarchical systems, or governments to help us, and devise ways to help ourselves.“

Now, back to my bold claim. Can a book really save the world?

No. Only human action (and in some cases human inaction) can save the world.

A book can show us the door to another reality, but we’ll have to walk through the door of our own accord.

It’s up to us, the humans who desire this alternative future, to change how things are done and show people that there is indeed a better way.

Nestle won’t get it done. Unilever won’t get it done. Monsanto won’t get it done. Nor any other of the mega corporations below that control almost everything you buy:

These 10 mega corporations control almost everything you buy and eat

These 10 mega corporations control almost everything you buy and eat

So let’s read these books and then get to work making things happen, and start helping ourselves and future generations to a better future. Start in your backyard, create abundance, and I bet you that the rest of your neighborhood will soon follow.

Let these lines from Bob Dylan lead the way:

Come mothers and fathers
Throughout the land
And don’t criticize
What you can’t understand
Your sons and your daughters
Are beyond your command
Your old road is rapidly agin’
Please get out of the new one if you can’t lend your hand
For the times they are a-changin’

Featured photo by Ben Falk of Whole Systems Design

The post 7 Books That Show Us How To Fix Our Broken World – One Garden And Community At A Time appeared first on Walden Labs.

Krav Maga Tactical Survival: Personal Safety in Action Review

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When the grid goes down, and SHTF, it’s vital that a person knows how to protect themselves. Guns, knives, and other weapons will only get a person so far. Also, despite what most people think, those items aren’t always readily available when the need arises.  A person needs to be able to protect themselves even […]

The post Krav Maga Tactical Survival: Personal Safety in Action Review appeared first on Preparing for shtf.

10 How-To Books Worth Owning

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10 How-To Books Worth Owning They say knowledge is power and that you need wits to survive when the world around you crumbles. As preppers, we are used to stockpile food, water and survival gear. We gather all the things we might need during a crisis and we hope for the best. However, gathering knowledge …

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(Free) New US Air Force SERE Manual

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Image result for sere usaf

The new Survival Evasion Resistance Escape (SERE) Operations Manual is available free online and it’s actually pretty great. It’s a rather large file so rather than opening it with the browser I suggest to right click and directly download the PDF.

AF Handbook 10-644 SERE 21 March 2017

The USAF survival manual has always been a solid survival literature staple, often used as reference or downright plagiarized by more than a few survival manuals out there. This latest version is packed full of good updated info.

Keep a copy in your PC, you phone and flash drive, heck, take the time and print a hard copy of it as well.

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

 

 

Top 10 Homesteading and Preparedness Books

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Top 10 Homesteading and Preparedness Books There are so many resources in the digital world that its easy to forget about the importance of the old paper world. I feel like no group can better portray the importance of paper knowledge like preppers. There is also just something nice about a good book. It has …

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Your Survival Library

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survival_library_books

wilderness_book_survival_educateWe all know that knowledge is power; but when it really comes down to an emergency, the right kind of knowledge could be the difference between life and death. We take a look at some of the best survival books for your library or Kindle. The books in this collection were chosen because they truly make life easier. Why make stupid mistakes when you can learn from the mistakes from others?

By Alex Coyne, a contributing author of Survival Cache & SHTFBlog

The books on this list serve as a cornerstone of good survival habits and practices. Any competent survivalist will understand the information conveyed in these materials.

The Ultimate Guide to Wilderness Living

Also known as the Naked Wilderness Survival Guide, this book’s slightly longer title tells you every you need to know about it: Surviving with nothing but your bare hands and what you find in the woods. John and Geri McPherson are well-known in survivalist circles, and have been instructing people in the art of wilderness survival for decades.

Read Also: Survival Books for Your Bunker

Fire Skills: Methods for Starting Fires Without Matches

A collaborative project by David and Victoria Aman, this book teaches you more about how to make fire in the field – fire is one of the most primitive human skills, and in a situation where you’re fighting for survival, knowing how to make, use, and control fire will be one of your most critical skills.

A Field Guide to Western Medicinal Plants and Herbs

This one’s part of the Peterson Field Guide series; check out the rest if you want to broaden your nature library. This one applies to western medicinal plants and herbs: What you’ll encounter in the wild and what to do with it. Knowledge of plants, it goes without saying, is essential if you don’t want to die from eating or applying the wrong thing.

The Complete Book of Knots

By Geoffrey Budworth, this book really is the complete book of knots. Knot-making can get you out of a lot of tight situations: You might need to tie together a knot to keep your gear or shelter in one place, and that’s just two examples. Knots are useful. Learn how.

First-Aid WikiBooks

WikiBooks is a great resource for information, and this one is specifically geared towards basic First-Aid. You won’t find much of survival info in here, but at the end of reading this one you should know what to do in a medical emergency at the very least, which makes it worth a look.

Related: 3 Types of Books you Should Read and Why

The American Red Cross First-Aid and Safety Handbook

First-Aid is vital, so here’s another take on the First-Aid straight from the American Red Cross. You know the information you’re getting in here is accurate, so make sure you’ve got this one standing on your bookshelf, or hanging around on your Kindle device.

US Air Force Survival Handbook

Also known as The Portable and Essential Guide to Staying Alive, the US Air Force Survival Handbook is surprisingly available for order off of Amazon. Get your copy and learn how to stay alive from the experts.

The Complete Survival Shelters Handbook

survival_book_complete_survival_shelters_handbookBy Anthonio Akkermans, The Complete Survival Shelters Handbook contains guides on how to build shelters for almost any environment and climate using materials you’ll find around you in such a situation.  According to the book’s description, you can expect to find out more about everything from a Yurt to a Debris Hut and Scandinavian Lavvu. In any survival situation, crafting adequate shelter is crucial. Having multiple ways to construct shelter is A worthy inclusion to anyone’s library!

The Bushcraft Field Guide to Trapping, Gathering and Cooking in the Wild

Food: Even outside of a survival situation, you’re screwed without it. Here’s the field guide to trapping, gathering and cooking in the wild. It goes without saying that you shouldn’t take this one on the road if you’re just planning a camping trip at a nearby game reserve; that being said, it’s essential info for the serious survivalist.

A Field Guide to Edible Wild Plants: Eastern and Central North America

This one is also part of the Peterson Field Guide series – see, we told you to go look! This one is geared towards Eastern and Central North America. Even if travelling there isn’t in your plans, familiarize yourself with the area’s plants and their uses. As we all know, survival situations rarely stick to a plan.

Survive! Essential Skills and Tactics to Get You Out of Anywhere – Alive

Written by the guy behind the TV show Survivalman, this book comes highly recommended by many survival experts. The book promises a no-BS look at survival, and that’s pretty much exactly what you get. It covers everything from shelters to survival kits as well as “why the notion of hunting and tracking large game is largely a pipe dream” in a wilderness situation.

The Ultimate Survival Manual: 333 Skills That Will Get You Out Alive

The Ultimate Survival Manual is certainly comprehensive; the book offers a run-down of skills that you absolutely cannot afford to be without.

The US Army Survival Manual

Know the ins and outs of survival like a real soldier: It could be the difference between life and death.  This one goes well with the US Air Force Manual (recommended further up), and it teaches you not only what to do in a survival situation, but how to prepare yourself for anything you might encounter mentally. Things like first-aid and health are also covered at length.

Bushcraft 101: A Field Guide to the Art of Wilderness Survival

Dave Canterbury is well-known in survival circles, and there are a couple books that add to the Bushcraft series: This is only one of them, and focuses purely on the art of survival in the wilderness. Also take a look at Advanced Bush Craft once you’ve read your way through the rest.

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List of Great Books on Bartering

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Just by going to websites like this, you are way ahead of the general populace. If you go ahead and actually prepare you are light-years ahead of most. If we have a large scale disaster, you may be in a position to trade some of your goods (and services) for items you may need. Here are some books to get you started in bartering.

The post List of Great Books on Bartering appeared first on Dave’s Homestead.

“Third Tier” List of Recommended Specialty Books

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Some of these books are more expensive than those in the second and first tiers, others are more technical, and some are supplemental texts that cover the same subjects in different ways. For whatever reason, I don’t find these books as essential as those on the first two lists, even though I bought some of them first….

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“Second Tier” List of Recommended Specialty Books

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I subscribe to a Good, Better, Best philosophy when it comes to preparedness resources. I would rather have a good piece of equipment RIGHT NOW, than have plans to buy the best most ultimate piece of gear someday. Then as I learn to use that good piece of equipment, it helps me know what too look for when I have the resources to upgrade. Once you start to understand the fundamental skills contained in the non-fiction must have list, you may want to learn more details. This next list is a little more in depth. It will be followed by a third list at a later date.

The post “Second Tier” List of Recommended Specialty Books appeared first on Dave’s Homestead.

Non-Fiction Must Read Books

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Having “stuff” is cool, but too many people tend to rely on “stuff” in an emergency, when really, keeping your head and thinking your way through things works a lot better. (Ever watch MacGyver?) No preparedness plan is complete without knowledge, because somebody can take your stuff, but they cannot take your mind, (if YOU don’t lose it!).

The post Non-Fiction Must Read Books appeared first on Dave’s Homestead.

Trayer Wilderness Cookbook – Volume 1

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After reading and reviewing How To Embrace An Off-Grid Lifestyle, I could not wait to see what kind of recipes Tammy Trayer would cook up in The Trayer Wilderness Cookbook Volume 1. It is good to Read More …

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Embrace An Off-Grid Lifestyle – Review

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How To Embrace An Off-Grid Lifestyle by Tammy Trayer I would first like to thank Tammy for her willingness to share this information with the public and for allowing me to review her work. I Read More …

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Kate Morris and The McClane Apocalypse

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Kate Morris and The McClane Apocalypse Richard McGrath ” Finding Freedom” Audio in player below! This week we have another author Kate Morris who is also a homesteader. We will dive in and talk about prepping, freedom, homesteading, and her books also be sure to check her out on Facebook as well. Kate Morris: “I … Continue reading Kate Morris and The McClane Apocalypse

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20 Survival Principles From the Classic Book, Lucifer’s Hammer

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lucifer's hammer

A classic noven in the TEOTWAWKI* niche is Lucifer’s Hammer, published in 1977, by veteran science fiction writers Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle. The story line is a classic end of the world scenario. A previously-unknown comet is discovered only months before scientists realize it is on a near-collision course with Earth. Naturally, virtually no one in the world is prepared when the comet breaks apart and strikes the Earth in several places. As the story continues, it focuses on the struggles of survivors, building into an exciting, good vs. evil finish.

Lucifer's Hammer cover

Lucifer’s Hammer cover

Within this 600+ page story are 20 valuable, often universal lessons and principles worth examining

Things in the sky can be unpredictable

This story is based on a comet that crashes into earth; but there are other, more plausible hazards from space, foremost being electrical storms generated by the sun that can wreak havoc with our electrical grid as described in this article.

Leaders lead

A U.S. Senator from California is one of the heroes of the story when he takes on the executive role, comparable to that of a Governor, when all other government structure fails. Even though he is hampered by a heart defect, he maintains the respect and loyalty of the group of people that gravitated to him. As a natural leader, he steps up in a crisis to do what he does best.

Be careful who you trust

The millionaire amateur astronomer who first discovers the comet, has a caretaker maintaining his mountain observatory. It’s stocked and ready to go as his personal bug out location. When disaster strikes, the caretaker and some friends decide they need the property more, and turn the owner away at gunpoint. The astronomer had placed all of his preparedness eggs in that basket, and was turned away with nothing but the vehicle he was driving.

Love may have to wait

Romance becomes much more complicated when your social circle shrinks. Within the Senator’s tight-knit survivor’s group, two alpha-males seek the attention of the Senator’s beautiful daughter. For political reasons, one of the men is strongly advised not to pursue her in the interest of keeping the group together. Personal relationships are difficult to cultivate and maintain in a big enough crisis.

Denying what’s in front of you can get you killed

One of the more memorable characters is a rural mail carrier who gets caught mid-route by the comet strike. Even in the face of extreme rainstorms caused by the comet, he presses to finish his mail route and is almost washed away. Salvaging as much of the mail as he can, he presses on and is shot at by predatory teens. He eventually accepts the dangers of the new world and obtains a pistol for self-protection. Realities may change and they may change drastically. Survivors will be those who can accept and adapt quickly.

Impending doom can embolden bad people

A paroled rapist realizes that even if he indulges his homicidal sexual fantasies, he won’t be held to trial. He unleashes his urges on a young woman and is arrested for her murder. Later after the comet strike, he is the recipient of “frontier justice” from a jailer who releases lesser criminals but can’t bring himself to let the rapist go. This is a lesson to add self defense and home defense to your list of prepping priorities. Learn self-defense through martial arts (learn how to choose the best dojo), as well as teaching everyone in the household to use a firearm safely and accurately.

The right vehicle can save your butt

In 1977, the do-all, off-road truck was the International TravelAll, equivalent to today’s Chevy Suburban. In Lucifer’s Hammer, the TravelAll lived up to its reputation by getting characters through floods and mud, pulling down trees, and being reliable all the time, every time. In the real world, having a tough, reliable vehicle is just as important. This article shares tips for getting your vehicle ready for the end of the world, and it’s not as expensive as you might think.

Lucifer's Hammer

The ultimate 70’s off-road vehicle

You don’t have to know everything, you just need to know where to find it

Dan Forrester, Ph.D., is an Astrophysicist at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California when the comet strikes. He has the foresight to conceal reference books that turn out to be important in getting accepted into the Senator’s survival group. Later, these books become key in defending the good guys and restoring civilization. It also inspired me to get the books, How Things Work, Volumes 1-4, which are difficult to find, but a very good substitute is The Way Things Work Now and, for homesteading and rural basic skills, the Foxfire books.

Politics are a big part of disasters

As Lucifer’s Hammer progresses, comet survivors look to existing remnants of government to guide them. The lesson? Strong politicians and their supporters will have more influence over what happens following a disaster than they did before the disaster. Face time with politicians at all levels or campaign contributions before the disaster go a long way.

Adversity Forces You to Grow Up Fast

Several of the characters in the book have sons in Boy Scouts. The parents’ plan to send the Scouts up into the mountains for their safety backfires when the kids have to take on adult roles. While somewhat immature, the boys had the skills they needed to survive and survive, they did. Survival skills should be taught at all levels, and this list provides a good place to start.

The Keepers of Secret Knowledge are worth their weight in gold

Engineers, physicians, mechanics, machinists…these will be the modern-day alchemists who will salvage the remnants of the disaster and start to rebuild. Guards at roadblocks had lists of desired skills that could pass through to safety. Others were out of luck. The Knowledge: How to Rebuild Civilization in the Aftermath of a Cataclysm is a must-read for more information in this area.

Medical problems before become severe after

Dr. Dan Forrester, savior of the good guys has Type 1 Diabetes, a dangerous affliction to have in a post-disaster situation. He eventually loses his source of insulin and dies. However, all may not be lost in our more modern era. Read this article written by a prepper mom with a Type 1 child for practical tips to prepare for such an event. For the rest of us, it’s vital to become as healthy and physically fit as possible now, both as a prep for future hard times as well as a way to improve quality of life.

Hard decisions will have to be made

As it often happens in a sudden disaster, needs outstrip resources very quickly. Both the good guys and bad guys have in-depth discussions about available food, restrict adding new outsiders, and predict the severity of the winter soon to come. Do they feed strangers now, just to watch their own children starve later? Moral dilemmas will become one of the most difficult aspects of surviving, as Survival Mom explains in this BuzzFeed article.

Those with skills will fare better

This one is distinct from the “Keepers of Secret Knowledge” because it relates to everyone. Can you ride a horse? Drive a car with manual transmission? Use a two-way radio? Defend yourself with a handgun/rifle/shotgun? Have prior military or law enforcement experience? You will fare better than others if you said yes to one or all. Check out the section, Skill of the Month, for some ideas to build your skill/knowledge repertoire.

Civilization is fragile

Few businesses are able to maintain large inventories of items, including food. Our modern computer-managed inventories and just-in-time reordering means that when a sudden disaster hits, stores run out of items quickly. After about 12 hours, we are back to 1930’s level society, or worse.

Disabilities are magnified

When society is reduced to day-to-day survival, many with emotional or mental disabilities exceed their ability to cope and succumb to their disorders. The inability of many persons with disabilities or access and functional needs to pull their own weight can subject them to the cruel calculus of survival. Families with loved ones in these circumstances should consider and plan now how they will continue caring for them. One example of a family with an adult Down’s syndrome child is detailed in this book.

The Art of the Deal is real

Successful survivors must have the gift of gab…the ability to sell one’s self and trade valuable information for food or protection is vital. Persuasion is a skill worth its weight in gold and the ability to trade and barter, priceless.

Be prepared to use what you find

You can’t open a soup can or wine bottle without an opener or a drain a gas tank without a siphon hose; opportunities may present themselves along the way and some planning and forethought can make a difference.

Information is valuable, and organized information is priceless

In our everything-is-available-on-the-internet world, something as simple as a paper road map can be incredibly useful post-disaster. Annotating that map with notes about bridges out or roads blocked consolidates multiple sources of info in a more valuable way. Collecting detailed maps of your area and surrounding states is an inexpensive prep.

The Road is not where you want to be

Every society needs a justice system with consequences for violating rules. In Lucifer’s Hammer, the good guys hanged those who were sentenced to capital punishment; short of hanging, the next most severe punishment was being banished to The Road. Being evicted meant you were no longer able to share food, protection, and fellowship with the good guys. The Road almost surely guaranteed slow starvation and death from lack of food or from marauders.

The Most Important Lesson

Lucifer’s Hammer is just a story, one that The Survival Mom and I both enjoyed. You have the opportunity to write your own story, for the most part. Have a plan, stock your home, have some way of protecting yourself, and you and your family may live happily ever after.

*The End of The World as We Know It

Here’s Lisa’s video review of Lucifer’s Hammer.

lucifer's hammer

SURRENDER THE SUN

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SURRENDER THE SUN

I have a vast array of interests that add flavor and color to this wonderful life of mine. A few of those happen to be the idea of apocalypse and what impact it may have on the baseline human condition, our sometimes crazy weather and it’s impacts on this incredible world, and a deep rooted love of history, especially when either of my previous two mentions are somehow involved. In her recent work Surrender The Sun, author AR Shaw has offered up a shiny bobble that I simply could not ignore. So, the real question is would it live up to my wild imaginings of where it may take me?

Annette-Shaw-1_Fotor-300x298

Full disclosure, AR Shaw is a friend, a very nice lady and I have read her work before. That is precisely the reason I want to be careful in this review to only speak to the work and my impressions of it.

Given the interests I listed above that originally secured my interests in the book, in Surrender The Sun, Shaw did not disappoint.

Want to end life as we know it?
Let’s do it.
How about a naturally occurring catastrophe?
Yes, please.
What if I told you it’s all happened before and it will happen again?
Awesome. Bring it on.

In this cataclysmic, blizzard driven romp of a story, Shaw does a wonderful job of world building. I could feel my lungs ache and burn in the frigid temperatures as I stood on the lake shore staring out as wisps of blowing snow spun out and across the body of water’s frozen surface. To further my immersion in this white-bleached, wintry wasteland, Shaw effectively weaves a sense of intimate foreboding throughout the tale as I witnessed Bishop standing like a granite mountain as he shepherds flame-haired, Maeve and her party through the seemingly never-ending storm. Both natural and man made.

In short, if you share any or all of the interests I mentioned earlier, take a chance on Surrender The Sun. The story and the world are engulfing and satisfying. The author also does a good job of touching on some of my other interests too like preparedness and just what it would feel like to realize that you cannot prepare your way out of a situation. After all, it seems that is where things would get really interesting anyway, right? There will come a point when reading this book where you will find yourself standing alongside Bishop and Maeve, each of you asking yourselves the same question. Now what?

Jump into the deep freeze and grab your copy of Surrender The Sun today. To keep up with everything going on with AR Shaw, be sure to check out her blog. You can also find her on Facebook and Twitter.

Steven Bird On Prepping -Homesteading

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Steven Bird On Prepping -Homesteading Richard McGrath “Finding Freedom” Audio in player below! On this Episode of Finding Freedom we interview Steven Bird Author, Homesteader, Pilot, and Veteran. I’m excited to talk to Steven as I enjoy his books starting with The Homefront series and then The Shepherd. Steven Bird was born in 1973, deep … Continue reading Steven Bird On Prepping -Homesteading

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Homesteading, Prepping, and The Borrowed World

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Homesteading, Prepping, and The Borrowed World Richard McGrath “Finding Freedom” Audio in player below! Come along with Rich McGrath Host of Finding Freedom on this eoisode as we Interview Franklin Horton. Rich became friends with Franklin Horton on Facebook after reading the first book in his series. Rich sent Franklin a Friend request and the two … Continue reading Homesteading, Prepping, and The Borrowed World

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My Favorite Survival Books

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With Christmas coming around the corner I want to share some of my favorite new survival books of this year.

What better way to learn than by reading? Be it factual or fictional there are all kinds of good books to read. Bobby Akart and Dr. Bones and Nurse Amy are some of the best authors I know of. Bobby Akart writes fictional true stories that haven’t happened yet. His words. 🙂 Dr bones and Nurse Amy have a goal set in mind to teach as many people as possible how to treat medical emergencies at home so that we can take care of our families in a disaster. Both of the authors should be on all book shelves.

The Survival Medicine Handbook by Dr.Bones and Nurse Amy is a must have for every home. Not only preppers. The Survival Medicine Handbook is a 670 page detailed guide for those who want to be medically prepared for any disaster where help is NOT on the way. The third (2016) edition of The Survival Medicine Handbook is not your standard first aid book: Unlike other so-called “survival” medical books, it assumes that a disaster, natural or man-made, has removed all access to hospitals or doctors for the foreseeable future; you, the average person, are now the highest medical resource left to your family. The Survival Medicine Handbook will give you the tools, in plain English, to competently handle injuries and illness for any situation that leaves you as the end of the line with regards to your family’s medical well-being

Bobby Akart has a post-apocalyptic series titled “The Boston Brahmin Series” is fantastic! There are 6 books in this series and each book takes you deep inside of our corrupt government with The Loyal Nine as America descends into societal and economical collapse.

 

 

“With social unrest sweeping the country, Europe on the brink of war and the U.S. economy under siege by foreign nations, a new threat emerges. The nation is caught in the crosshairs of a power struggle between wealthy oligarchs and the political leaders who claim to have the country’s best interests at heart.

As the collapse events escalate, enter The Loyal Nine – direct descendants of the Founding Fathers, a modern day Knights Templar whose mission is to protect America, and the republic, from those who would inflict tyranny upon her.

But will America be destroyed from within? Conditions of war are building and they do not involve bullets and bombs. There is a new battleground – cyberspace. As the country descends into decline economically and socially, will America be caught off guard by a threat never before experienced – a devastating Cyber War?”

It is definitely worth the read and will turn any non believer into a prepper very quickly. As Bobby says, “This is a true story. It just hasn’t happened yet.”

Book One: THE LOYAL NINE

Book Two: CYBER ATTACK

Book Three: MARTIAL LAW

Book Four: FALSE FLAG

Book Five: THE MECHANICS

Book Six: CHOOSE FREEDOM

A few others of my favorites written by Bobby Akart are:

Cyber Warfare

EMP

36 hours (The Blackout Series Book 1)

Zero Hour (The Blackout Series Book 2)

Turning Point (The Blackout Series Book 3)

 

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The Doomsday Book Of Medicine Review

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Let’s say an EMP struck last week, and has taken out everything from communications to the street lights on your block. In the panic, you forget about the fact that your wife has had the flu for four days now, and it seems it’s getting worse. Your child also constantly reminds you that their feet have developed blisters, due to the extended walking they’ve been doing, and they can’t go on another step. You’re not a doctor so what do they want you to do? Luckily, one doctor thought about this scenario, and many more, when he decided to write The Doomsday Book of Medicine.

Now at 910 pages, this isn’t exactly a “pocket survival guide”. What it is though, is a book with vast pages of information on almost any common medical issue there is. There are remedies for things ranging from radiation exposure to treating animal and insect bites. Think of it as an encyclopedia of sorts. An encyclopedia with the potential to save your life.

After graduating from medical school, Dr. La Guardia dedicated 30+ years to researching health and human nutrition. Based on the information he was able to gather, it’s clear that there are natural remedies and alternative methods to treating illness and diseases, that people needed to be made aware of. How to deal with things like asthma and diabetes, in a Grid-Down situation, is crucial. This is where The Doomsday Book of Medicine comes in. Dr. La Guardia has a treasure trove of information located in one book.

While reading The Doomsday Book of Medicine, it was amazing to see what all I was learning about. I can’t stress enough, the amount of information that is covered in this book. It’s also written in a way that’s very easy to understand. Not only does the author tell you about treatment or prevention options, but he also covers some of the anatomy of the area. It helps the person reading to understand what it is they’re actually working with.

This is a book that I am going to recommend everyone pick up. People in your group, be it a small or large group, are going to get sick or are going to suffer from some sort of disease. You need to know to how deal with it or how to prevent it from becoming a life threatening issue. Medical supplies will only get someone so far. Medicine expires and for the things that don’t, they do run out. Be prepared and be informed get your copy of The Doomsday Book of Medicine.

Review By: KYPrepper89

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The Lost Ways – A Truly Amazing Prepper Book

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Learn how to build a self-feeding campfire. How to use herbs to heal a wound. How to forage for food, navigate by nature, and make your own knives. How to cook a survival staple that will keep for years. How to build a shelter and cook over open flame. Preserve food and water. Make homemade soap and toothpaste. If the world as we know it came to an end tomorrow, would your family be able to survive? The Lost Ways is a book that could help you thrive.

I’d like to tell you about the book The Lost Ways. I bought the book several months ago, and really haven’t been able to put it down. There are so many prepper topics covered in the book, that I think everyone would be able to learn something from reading i; beginning prepper, and seasoned survivalist. Take a look at the table of contents, and you’ll see what I mean.

The Lost Ways – Table of Contents

Disclaimer …………………………………………………….. 4
The Most Important Thing ……………………………… 18
Making Your Own Beverages: Beer to Stronger Stuff …………………………………………………………………. 23
Making Beer – Basic Recipe ………………………………. 25
Equipment ………………………………………………………………. 25
Ingredients ……………………………………………………………… 26
Creating the Malt: Malted Barley ………………………………. 26
Making the Yeast …………………………………………………….. 27
A Word on Hops ………………………………………………………. 28
Making the Beer ………………………………………………………. 28
A Bit of the Stronger Stuff: Distilling Your Own ‘Moonshine’ …………………………………………………… 30
Making a Still …………………………………………………………… 31
An Alembic Still ……………………………………………………….. 31
A Homemade Still ……………………………………………………. 33
A Schematic of a Homemade Still ………………………………. 35
Ginger beer: Making soda the old fashioned way .. 37
The Deadliest Drink? ……………………………………….. 38
Drunken Sailors ………………………………………………. 39
Beer Gets Boring …………………………………………….. 40
Spicing It Up …………………………………………………… 41
An Easier Brew ………………………………………………… 42
An Unusual Organism ………………………………………. 43
Doing It Yourself ……………………………………………… 45
How North American Indians and Early Pioneers Made Pemmican …………………………………………… 47
Nutritional Qualities ………………………………………… 49
Directions ………………………………………………………. 51
Ingredients ……………………………………………………………… 51
1. Rendering the Fat …………………………………………………. 51
2. Dried Meat Preparation ………………………………………… 58
How Much Do I Need? ……………………………………… 65
Spycraft : Military Correspondence during the 1700s to 1900s ………………………………………………………. 67
Rectal Acorn, Silver Ball, and Quill Letters …………………… 68
Invisible Ink……………………………………………………………… 70
Mask Letters ……………………………………………………………. 74
Wild West Guns For SHTF And A Guide To Rolling Your Own Ammo…………………………………………. 77
Modern Firearms …………………………………………….. 78
Handguns ……………………………………………………………….. 78
Rifles ………………………………………………………………………. 80
Ammunition ……………………………………………………………. 80
Reloading Components …………………………………….. 82
The Cartridge Case …………………………………………………… 83
Processing Brass Cartridge Cases ……………………………….. 85
Primer Pocket………………………………………………………….. 86
Bullets and Projectiles ………………………………………………. 86
The Cast Lead Bullet …………………………………………………. 87
Casting Bullets………………………………………………… 88
The Bullet Mold ……………………………………………………….. 88
The Lead Melting Pot ……………………………………………….. 89
The Ladle ………………………………………………………………… 90
The Melting Process …………………………………………………. 90
The Casting Process …………………………………………………. 91
Swagging Bullets ……………………………………………………….. 93
Machining Bullets…………………………………………………….. 94
The Final Word on Lead Bullets …………………………………. 95
Powder …………………………………………………………. 95
Black Powder ………………………………………………………….. 95
Smokeless Powder …………………………………………………… 96
Primers …………………………………………………………. 96
Primer Size ……………………………………………………………… 96
Reloading Equipment ………………………………………. 98
The Lee Loader ………………………………………………………… 98
The Single Stage Press ………………………………………………. 99
The Progressive Press …………………………………………….. 100
Reloading Dies ………………………………………………………. 101
Reloading Bench ……………………………………………………. 102
The Tumbler ………………………………………………………….. 102
The Powder Scale …………………………………………………… 103
Manuals ……………………………………………………………….. 103
Storage of Ammunition and Components ………….. 104
How Much Ammunition is Enough? …………………………. 105
Recycling ………………………………………………………………. 105
Work Practices ………………………………………………………. 106
How Our Forefathers Built Their Sawmills, Grain Mills and Stamping Mills ………………………………. 109
How the Overshot Wheel Works ………………………. 111
Making That Force Usable ……………………………………….. 115
Gears ……………………………………………………………………. 116
Belts ……………………………………………………………………… 119
For Reciprocating Saws …………………………………………… 121
Don’t Forget Lubrication …………………………………………. 122
Building Your Own Water Wheel ……………………………… 123
How our Ancestors made herbal poultice to heal their wounds ……………………………………………… 126
What is a Poultice? ………………………………………… 127
A Few Poultice Recipes……………………………………. 130
Cataplasma Aromaticum …………………………………………. 130
Soothing Poultice …………………………………………………… 131
For Stomach Aches …………………………………………………. 131
A Mustard Poultice …………………………………………………. 132
A Native American Recipe to Treat an Abscess …………… 132
A Word of Warning from The Past ……………………………. 133
What Our Ancestors Were Foraging For? Or How to Wildcraft Your Table ……………………………………. 134
Arrowhead (Sagittaria Latifolia) ……………………………….. 135
Asparagus (Asparagus Officinalis) …………………………….. 136
Bulrush (Scirpus acutus, Scirpus validus) …………………… 138
Cattails (Typha Latifolia, Typha angustifolia) ……………… 139
Chickweed, Common ……………………………………………… 141
Chicory (Cirhorium Intybus) …………………………………….. 143
Cleavers ………………………………………………………………… 144
Dandelion (Taraxacum Officionale) …………………………… 145
Henbit (Lamium Amplexicaule) ………………………………… 146
Lady’s Thumb (Polygonum persicaria) ………………………. 147
Lambs Quarters (Chenopodium album, Chenopodium berlanieri)……………………………………………………………… 148
Mint (Mentha piperita, Mentha spicata) …………………… 150
Mulberry (Morus alba, Morus rubra) ………………………… 151
Mustard, Black (Brassica Nigra) ……………………………….. 152
Peppergrass (Lapidium Virginicum) ………………………….. 154
Pigweed (Amaranthus Retroflexus, Amaranthus Hybridus) ……………………………………………………………………………. 155
Plantain (Plantago major, Plantago minor) ………………… 156
Pennycress, Field (Thlaspi Arvense) ………………………….. 158
Prickly Lettuce ……………………………………………………….. 159
Purslane (Portulaca Oleracea) …………………………………. 160
Quickweed ( Galinsoga Parviflora) ……………………………. 161
Reed Grass ( Phragmites communis) ………………………… 162
Shepherds Purse (Capsella Bursa-pastoris) ………………… 163
Sour Dock (Rumex crispus) ……………………………………… 165
Storksbill (Erodium Cicutarium) ……………………………….. 166
Watercress (Nasturtium Officinale) ………………………….. 167
How Our Ancestors Navigated Without Using a GPS system ………………………………………………………. 169
Shadow Tip Method ………………………………………. 170
Watch Method ……………………………………………… 171
Using the Stars ……………………………………………… 171
Letting the Sun Guide You ………………………………. 174
Letting the Moon Guide You at Night ………………… 175
Moss and Other Vegetation …………………………….. 175
Making a Compass …………………………………………. 176
How Our Forefathers Made Knives …………………. 178
Forging a Knife Blank ……………………………………… 179
Forging the Blade …………………………………………… 180
Forging the Tang ……………………………………………. 181
Grinding the Blade …………………………………………. 182
Hardening the Blade ………………………………………. 184
Making the Handle…………………………………………. 186
To Make Your Own Knife…………………………………. 187
How Our Forefathers Made Snow Shoes for Survival ………………………………………………………………… 190
Anatomy of a Snowshoe …………………………………. 191
Making Survival Snowshoes …………………………….. 193
Using Your Snowshoes ……………………………………. 196
How North California Native Americans Build Their Semi-subterranean Roundhouse ……………………. 197
Building the Semi-subterrain Roundhouse ………….. 201
Supporting Poles ……………………………………………………. 203
Roof Construction ………………………………………………….. 204
Roundhouse Entrance …………………………………………….. 206
Fire Pit ………………………………………………………………….. 206
Summary ………………………………………………………………. 208
Our Ancestor’s Guide to Root Cellars ………………. 210
History ………………………………………………………… 211
The Right Space for the Job ……………………………… 212
Climate …………………………………………………………………. 212
What to Keep Where ……………………………………………… 215
Creating the Ideal Conditions …………………………… 216
Lighting…………………………………………………………………. 216
Humidity ………………………………………………………………. 217
Dirt Floors …………………………………………………………….. 218
Wet Cloth or Paper ………………………………………………… 218
Standing Water ……………………………………………………… 218
Bury Your Treasure ………………………………………………… 218
A Condensation Nightmare ……………………………………… 219
Ventilation ……………………………………………………………. 219
Storage Ideas ……………………………………………….. 220
In-Garden Storage ………………………………………………….. 221
Insulation ……………………………………………………………… 222
Things That Do and Do Not Belong in Your Root Cellar ………………………………………………………………….. 223
Proper Storage ……………………………………………… 224
Cull the Crops ………………………………………………………… 224
Preparing Vegetables for Root Cellar Storage ……………. 225
Curing Winter Vegetables for Storage ………………………. 226
Pests …………………………………………………………………….. 226
Organization ………………………………………………………….. 227
Good Old Fashion Cooking on an Open Flame ….. 230
Cast Iron Cooking ………………………………………….. 231
Care and Use …………………………………………………………. 232
Seasoning Your Cookery …………………………………………. 232
Never Use Dish Soap ………………………………………………. 233
Iron Rusts ……………………………………………………………… 234
No Fire ………………………………………………………………….. 234
Companion Tools……………………………………………………. 234
Roasting Meats ……………………………………………… 235
On a Spit ……………………………………………………………….. 235
On a String …………………………………………………………….. 236
Dutch Oven Cooking ………………………………………. 238
The Right Temperature …………………………………………… 239
Companion Tools……………………………………………………. 240
Recipes Past and Future ………………………………….. 241
Colcannon …………………………………………………………….. 242
Meat Pies………………………………………………………………. 242
Mock-mock Turtle Soup ………………………………………….. 243
Wassail …………………………………………………………………. 243
Apple Pie ………………………………………………………………. 245
Biscuits and Gravy ………………………………………………….. 245
Easter Cake ……………………………………………………………. 246
Porridge ………………………………………………………………… 247
Stew ……………………………………………………………………… 248
Bread ……………………………………………………………………. 248
Learning from Our Ancestors: How to Preserve Water ……………………………………………………….. 250
How Can I Make Sure That the Water Is Clean? …………. 256
Where Should I Hide or Store My Stock of Water? ……… 260
Learning From Our Ancestors How to Take Care of Our Hygiene When There Isn’t Anything to Buy … 263
Soap Making …………………………………………………. 264
Basic Recipe for Soap ……………………………………………… 264
Making Lye Water from Wood Ash …………………………… 265
Collecting the Fat …………………………………………………… 266
Cooking Up the Soap: The Cold Process Method ………… 268
Making Your Own Signature Soaps …………………… 269
Medicinal Soaps …………………………………………………….. 270
Homemade Toothpaste ………………………………….. 270
Basic Baking Soda Recipe ………………………………………… 271
Clay Toothpaste …………………………………………………….. 271
To Taste ………………………………………………………………… 272
How and Why I Prefer to Make Soap with Modern Ingredients ………………………………………………… 273
History ………………………………………………………… 274
Why Modern Ingredients ………………………………… 275
Understanding The Process …………………………….. 275
Irreplaceable Ingredients ………………………………… 276
Machinery and Equipment for Making Soap at Home ………………………………………………………………….. 278
Possible Soap Additives ………………………………………….. 279
Essential Oils …………………………………………………………. 279
So, How do You Make Soap? …………………………… 280
Ingredients ……………………………………………………………. 280
Equipment …………………………………………………………….. 281
Methodology…………………………………………………………. 282
Temporarily Installing a Wood-Burning Stove during Emergencies ………………………………………………. 288
Why a Wood-Burning Stove …………………………….. 289
Temporarily Installing Your Wood-Burning Stove … 290
Temporarily Installing the Chimney ………………….. 292
Heating with Wood ………………………………………… 294
Making Traditional and Survival Bark Bread ……. 296
How to Make Sourdough Starter (The Rising Agent People Used Before 1900) ……………………………….. 298
How to Make Tasty Bread Like in 1869 ………………. 301
Making Bark Bread (Famine Bread) …………………… 302
Trapping In Winter For Beaver And Muskrat Just like Our Forefathers Did …………………………………….. 306
Why Our Forefathers Trapped ………………………….. 307
The Best Places to Trap for Beaver and Muskrat … 308
Their Local Habitats ……………………………………….. 309
The Types of Traps You’ll Use for Beaver and Muskrat ………………………………………………………………….. 310
Foot Hold Trap Types ……………………………………………… 311
Finding the Land Trails ……………………………………. 313
How to Set the Foot Hold Trap …………………………. 314
Finding the Underwater Trails ………………………….. 315
How to Set a Body Grip Trap ……………………………. 315
Tanning ……………………………………………………….. 316
Selling at the Trading Post ……………………………………….. 318
And There You Have It…………………………………………….. 318
How To Build a Smokehouse and smoke Fish ……. 320
Cold Smoking ………………………………………………… 322
Before We Start: Woods for Flavoring Your Fish ………… 322
Cold Smoking the Fish …………………………………………….. 323
First Things First: Curing the Fish ……………………………… 323
Making a Cold Smoker ……………………………………………. 324
Creating the smoker……………………………………………….. 326
Hot Smokin’! ………………………………………………… 330
Recipes Using Smoked Fish ……………………………………… 332
Practical Survival Lessons from the Donner Party 335
The Story of the Donner Party …………………………. 338
The Fatal Decision ………………………………………………….. 338
Escape and Rescue Attempts …………………………………… 343
Survival Lessons from the Donner Party …………….. 345
Follow the Known Route …………………………………………. 345
Money Won’t Save You; It’s What You Know …………….. 346
Supplies + Time = Life……………………………………………… 346
Weather Is the Deciding Factor ……………………………….. 347
Know When to Turn Back ……………………………………….. 348
Stress Leads to Anger and Volatility………………………….. 348
Age and Gender Play a Huge Role in Survival …………….. 349
Small Wounds = Death ……………………………………………. 350
How The Sheriffs From The Frontiers Defended Their Villages and Towns ……………………………………… 351
Crime in the West………………………………………….. 354
Equipment …………………………………………………… 356
Guns …………………………………………………………………….. 356
Communications …………………………………………… 359
Organization ………………………………………………… 361
The Sheriff …………………………………………………… 362
Deputy Sheriffs ……………………………………………… 363
Posses …………………………………………………………. 364
Bringing It Up to Date …………………………………….. 364
Showing the Flag ……………………………………………. 368
Raising a Posse ……………………………………………… 371
References …………………………………………………. 375

 

The Lost Ways has a 60 day 100% money back guarantee on the book. Also several other interesting books. Click on the The Lost Ways book image below to watch the video. Decide for yourself if it is something you want.

The Lost Ways book
 

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17 Free Kindle Books for Preppers

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17 Free Kindle Books for Preppers While it may be hard to pass over freebies, sometimes they are free for a reason. Free books, in particular, have a reputation for being pretty bad. So we combed through the free books available for the Kindle and found a few good resources. Whether you are looking for …

Continue reading »

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Prepping for SHTF scenarios with Angry American

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Prepping for SHTF scenarios with Angry American Forrest & Kyle “The Prepping Academy” Listen in player below! Forrest and Kyle are interviewing author Chris Weatherman. Some folks may know Chris by another name though. Angry American. Chris is a successful author with more than a few novels under his belt. His “Going Home” series is a … Continue reading Prepping for SHTF scenarios with Angry American

The post Prepping for SHTF scenarios with Angry American appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

Book Reviews: “Broken Mirror” by Michel Savage, and “Off Grid and free” by Ron Melchiore

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Broken Mirror by Michel Savage Hello, my friend and welcome back!  A couple of months back, I received a book about survivors of an asteroid hit by the asteroid known as “Apophis”.  It’s an…

The post Book Reviews: “Broken Mirror” by Michel Savage, and “Off Grid and free” by Ron Melchiore appeared first on American Preppers Online.

My Revised Book, Emergency Preparedness & More

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EP&More 2nd Edition_v7It has been a while since I have written a new post, since I have been enjoying a bit of time off, as well as working on new projects. One thing that I am very pleased with is that Noah has taken good care of this blog. Information continues to be widely shared and you are getting to see some different points of view.

I have been working on revising and updating the second edition of my book, “Emergency Preparedness and More, A Manual on Food Storage and Survival. I’m happy to announce that it is now available on Amazon.

The second edition contains approximated 100 new pages, plus updates to many more. It consists of 23 chapters that cover a wide variety of survival topics, such as figuring out the amounts and types of foods needed in order to be self-sufficient and how to package this food for long-term storage. After reading this book, you will be able to answer important questions that include:

  • How do you cook your food without electricity?
  • What type of medical supplies should you have on hand?
  • Do you know how to purify your drinking water if the water system fails?
  • How should you navigate precious metal trading?

All of this and more is included in this easy to read book.

In addition, I am working on a new book that deals with a different area of prepping. This should be coming out in the spring. You will hear more about this later. While I will never start another new blog, I intend to stay somewhat active in helping people. I do have a Facebook page Peppers Books and Info, in which I share posts from some of my favorite blogs, like The Survival Mom and of course Preparedness Advice

You will see occasional posts from me on this blog in the future.  In the mean time, I wish you all well and may God Bless you.

Howard

The post My Revised Book, Emergency Preparedness & More appeared first on Preparedness Advice.

Angry American!

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Angry American Forrest & Kyle “The Prepping Academy” Listen in player below! Forrest and Kyle are interviewing author Chris Weatherman. Some folks may know Chris by another name though. Angry American. Chris is a successful author with more than a few novels under his belt. His “Going Home” series is a best seller and has many … Continue reading Angry American!

The post Angry American! appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

Outdoor Adventure & Essential Skills!

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Outdoor Adventure & Essential Skills! Josh “7 P’s of survival” This show in player below! On this episode of 7 P’s of Survival we are talking about one of my favorite survival handbooks. The Survival Handbook: Essential Skills For Outdoor Adventure. While this book has never made it into my pack it is without a doubt graphic intensive … Continue reading Outdoor Adventure & Essential Skills!

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Book Review: Air Rifles: A Buyer’s and Shooter’s Guide

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air_rife_great_quality_prep

I’ll say from the outset that I’m less familiar with air guns than “traditional” guns. Air rifles, to me, have always fallen into the christmas_story_markwith_airrifle_bbguncategory of a BB gun, the “Red Rider” type that Ralphie wished for in the classic movie, A Christmas Story. A “rifle” that kids use as a precursor to getting a rimfire rifle, something they can use to understand the principles of gun safety while knocking soda cans over with an air-powered BB.  This book, along with some independent research, shattered my preconceptions of the air rifle. As it turns out, the air rifle has a rich history and a variety of applications. As much as it hurts to admit, the air rifle may be a valuable tool in skirting gun control laws.  As bleak as it may sound, plinking around with an air rifle may be the only option in the future.

By Mark Puhaly, a contributing author to Survival Cache & SHTFBlog

In any event, let’s dispense with the gloom and doom and get into the world of air rifles. Exploring the details of miscellaneous weapons types is always fun.  It’s even more fun when it brings you back to the days of plinking around the backyard as a kid.

Overview 

The modern air rifle, in case you’re unaware, is vastly different from its predecessor. The first air rifle, it seems, dates back to around 1580 air_rife_book_markwith_survivaland now sits in a museum in Stockholm.  After a bit of cursory research, I learned early, advanced air rifles were used for hunting wild boar and deer.  Of course, these rifles were a bit more hardcore than your traditional BB Gun.  In fact, old air rifles were used in military applications as well.  Today’s more modern air rifle can do just that in a survival situation.  And with what seems like ever-increasing risks of additional gun control measures and expensive ammunition, the air rifle makes sense to add to anyone’s collection of survival firearms.   The book covers air rifles from start to finish. All types are covered: CO2 powered guns, spring guns, multi-pump pneumatics, single-stroke pneumatics, and pre-charged pneumatics. The book then moves into the many types of projectiles (more than a novice might think).  For preppers, there’s even an entire chapter devoted to “The Survival Springer”.  These include models of all types and price ranges.  The book also covers sights, scopes, velocity, accuracy, range, targets, training tips, and accessories. Truly, this book seems to cover everything on air rifles.

Related: Back to Basics – Rifle Accuracy 

After reading “Air Rifles: A Buyers and Shooter’s Guide” by Steve Markwith, I’m much more familiar with the versatility of the air rifle and have a newfound respect for them. I’m even itching to buy one (or two) now.  The modern air rifle could serve as an excellent, low-cost training tool for people that live in more suburban environments where shooting bullets off your back deck is less of a… neighborly thing to do.

Likes & Dislikes 

Rich in photos and description, Markwith’s conversational yet informative writing style from his Survival Guns – A Beginner’s Guide holds true here, too. This should be a go-to book for, as the title suggests, anyone thinking about buying an air rifle or anyone that shoots one. I don’t care if you’re a beginner or an expert air rifleman, there’s something in this book that will help.

Also Read: The Evolution of the Black Rifle 

My biggest complaint is that, like Survival Guns, the images are informative but are presented in black and white. The book would be richer if they were in color. The writing is better than the image presentation. $12.95 seems fair for the paperback, but $7.95 for a Kindle version feels a bit high. I generally prefer paperback anyway, particularly where this one is in 8×10” size, but Kindle buyers should be able to get this book for something more like $5.95.

The Verdict 

If you’re new to air rifles, or are even a moderate user, there’s something of use for you here, I’m certain of it. This book would, however, best serve the individual that’s thinking about getting an air rifle, because the money spent on the book up front would save you money many times over by both helping you choose the right air rifle to suit your needs from the outset, and also help you get the most out of it.

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Lessons Learned from One Second After

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One Second After by William R. Forstchen is a really scary book. Not scary like a Stephen King book, but more like a wake up call to how fragile the world we live in is. This is the book that prompted my first post, and really pushed me to start thinking of myself as a prepper or a survivalist. If you stay dependent on today’s way of life, you will die quickly when it is all taken away from you.
One Second After

This post is a review of One Second After and assumes you have read the book. If you haven’t already read One Second After, then be warned that there are a lot of spoilers in this post.

John Matherson is the main character and lives in the small college town of Black Mountain, North Carolina. One Second After deals with an unexpected electromagnetic pulse (EMP) attack on the United States and how it affects the people living after.

Here is my list of lessons learned:

  1. If you currently depend on medicine to stay alive, you will be one of the first people to die. John Matherson’s daughter was a Type 1 diabetic. When the insulin was out, she died a painful sad death.
  2. The elderly that depend on others to take care of them will also die quickly. People forget about taking care of others when it is a struggle to take care of themselves.
  3. Back up generators are useless when they’re taken out by an EMP. None of the important generators in the town of Black Mountain worked after the EMP. The hospital and the nursing home specifically. If they had worked, many lives would have been saved. The town would have been more prepared before they ran out of fuel.
  4. Tend to any kind of open wound immediately. The small cut on Matherson’s hand almost killed him. His stubbornness to have it looked at was dumb.
  5. Old cars are more reliable than today’s modern cars. A 1950s era Studebaker, a 1964 Ford Mustang and a whole fleet of old VW buses and bugs didn’t notice the EMP attack. When so much depends on computer motherboards today, it is really easy to render them useless.
  6. Don’t be afraid to be a leader when you are the most knowledgeable and experienced in the group. Someone had to take charge of the town. The major was slow to take action because nothing like this had ever happened. Matherson was hesitant to take charge of the defense of the city, even though he was the most experienced.
  7. Teach your way out of a job. When everyone around you knows what you do, you no longer have to be the one that people depend on. This is what Washington Parker did with the college kids. He taught them as much as he could as quickly as he could. When the attack from the Posse came, the town was ready and performed well even after Washington died.
  8. Learn how things were done before electricity. Have good training material for this available in something other than electronic format. Books and magazines were eventually found in the basement of the library. But having this ready from the beginning would have been great.
  9. Having electronic versions of training material on a laptop that was in a Faraday cage would have been even better. Not a single time was a Faraday Cage mentioned in the book.
  10. Communication is really important. Having a way to talk across town would have saved lives.
  11. Why is it that in every prepper book the local first responders are screwed after an EMP? Couldn’t a fire truck or police car be hardened against an EMP?
  12. Everyone in your family needs to know how to use a gun safely. But you also have to train and practice how to protect your home. When Matherson’s home was invaded, the children were not useful. They had never trained for that situation. Gun training is not enough.
  13. Having neighbors who you know and trust is so important. Immediately after Matherson’s home was invaded, his neighbor came over to assist.
  14. It doesn’t matter how rural you are. If everyone is hunting the woods to survive, the animals will all be killed. Why didn’t they do more fishing?
  15. Working together is the only way for a group to survive. The town of Black Mountain became organized and everyone participated in the defense and food for the city.
  16. Don’t be afraid of strangers. Just make them prove themselves. They may be able to provide skills or advice to help everyone. Makala was and outsider who’s car was stalled on the highway like many others. But she was a gifted nurse who ended up running the hospital.
  17. Pets were looked at as protein. A last desperate means of feeding starving family members.

If I was the mayor of a small town and read One Second After I would:

  1. Have a room specially built onto the municipal building that would serve as a Faraday cage.
  2. Add a HAM radio for long distance communications. Also add a dozen short distance (25 mile) walkies talkies to the room.
  3. Add nightvision goggles to the room for defense.
  4. Encourage solar panels for homes in the city, stores, schools and municipal buildings.
  5. Create school and city food banks. Stock up on MREs and freeze dried food.
  6. Create a seed bank with crops that grow well in your area. Encourage people to have gardens and have free classes on gardening.
  7. Encourage and fund homesteading and Renaissance festivals. Old world skills like blacksmithing, farming without electricity, tanning hides and foraging would be valuable and it’s good to know who has these skills.
  8. Encourage chicken and rabbit raising. Have free classes on these topics too. Eggs and rabbit meat would have made a huge difference in Black Mountain.
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Extreme Couponing can be a Valuable Prepper Skill

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I know what your thinking! Preppers already have a bad rep in today’s society. Don’t you dare try to group us with those crazy coupon ladies. But hear me out. Let’s think about how extreme couponing can really benefit your budget and your prepper pantry. Maybe you will change your perception of it.

Imagine this little story:
On my way home I often stop by the grocery store to pick up a few items. Now I live in a suburban area of a very large city. So stopping by the store around the rush hour time frame is often just a little bit crazy. With very little parking open, I have to drive around the lot a few times before finding a place to park. Of course it is on the edge of the lot, so I have to walk a little. Lucky for me it is mid July in Texas and only 96 degrees today.

Navigating crowded rows. Screaming kids. People stopped in the middle of a row talking on cell phones. Busy sample booths.

Shopping done. My list of four items somehow turned into closer to twenty items. So when I get to the cash registers I’ll end up having to wait in line behind the others who have carts full of food. No self check out. No express lane either. I manage to find a relatively short line behind a mother with two kids. The kids looked to be early teenagers. They unloaded the cart onto the conveyor very efficiently as the mother spoke with the cashier. Rather surprisingly one of the older store workers comes over and stands behind the cashier. Looks like a manager of sort. He greets the mother and surveys her groceries. The lady smiles and returns the managers greeting. She apologizes for coming in while they are so busy. He nods and reassures her that because of the weekly sale ending that he was sure he’d see her.

The cashier works his job. Over forty canned good items, four bags of flour, three bags of rice, and lots of pasta. A dozen electric tooth brushes, 10 tubes of tooth paste, two big packages of toilet paper rolls. Grand total ends up just over $230. Then she pulls out a binder, and hands the cashier a stack of manufacturer’s coupons. I notice that all of these coupons are related to the name brand products that were bought. Twenty or thirty scans later and the price of the groceries suddenly drops $40. I’m thinking, wow I need to learn how to coupon. Then they apply the double manufacture coupon discount that this store supports. $40 in coupons suddenly turns into $80. The overall grocery bill has gone from $230 to $150?!

There is a small cheer that erupts from the crowd of store baggers that has gathered around. I had no idea you could get this kind of coupon savings. I wonder where can I get coupons like these. Maybe the Sunday paper? The manager just smiles and tells the workers that they haven’t seen anything yet.

Next she pulls out a stack of free grocery store coupons, you know the kind that are hanging right beside the product throughout the store? Most of these require that you buy multiple products around the store or several of the same item. These are usually the generic store brand. Four bags of flour turns into “buy two and get two for half off”. Three bags of rice turns into “buy two get one free”. Pasta bags turn into “buy four and get one free”. 10 tubes of tooth paste turns into “buy 10 and get $5 off”. Two big packages of toilet paper rolls turns into “buy one and get one four half off”. Very quickly another $60 is knocked off the overall price. We are down to $90. At this point several shoppers are standing around watching too.

Next the lady pulls out a stack of printed pages. I guess there are printed from coupon websites. I wonder if they are free coupon sites or if you have to pay for them. These coupons are $4 off an electric tooth brush. She has 12 printed pages, one for each tooth brush she picked up. The store manager steps in now and says “I’m sorry but the store only allows 10 of these sort of coupons.” The lady without a beat pulls another page out of her binder and says “actually as of two weeks ago your store policy changed to 12. Here is a copy of your store coupon policy”. The manager nods to the cashier. There goes another $48. Now we are down to $42!

Lastly she pulls out a small stack of coupons. These look like they are from the stores sale flyer. I think that some of the products she had already used manufacture coupons for. I didn’t know that you could stack coupons like that. Then there are a few generic $5 off coupons when purchasing over $100. She uses two. A total of $24 in savings. She hands the cashier a $20 bill and actually receives change for her purchase.

I am totally blown away. I have never seen anything like this. Apparently a lot of people (who have gathered around) haven’t seen it either. Suddenly swamped by people asking questions. The lady turns to her kids, who were helping the bagging process and asks them to start passing out business cards. She specifically turns to me since I was behind her in line and hands me a card.  “I’m sorry for delaying your shopping this evening”. I shrug and say that I was really impressed by her crazy couponing. She says that it is actually called extreme couponing.

I look at her card:

On the front side has her name and a blog URL.

  • How to Extreme Coupon
  • Coupon Sites List
  • Extreme Couponing Tips

On the back side of the card is an ad for a class she teaches:

Extreme Couponing for Beginners

  • Where to get Coupons
  • What are the Best Coupons
  • How to get Free Coupons
  • Best Coupon Sites
  • How to Coupon Shop

This should be a prepper skill. Just like foraging or hunting for wild game, this brings additional food to your table. Not useful for after an EMP or other SHTF events. But certainly useful for stockpiling food and products to be prepared.

Recommended Sites to Learn About Extreme Couponing

Books about Extreme Couponing

Extreme Couponing: Learn How to Be a Savvy Shopper and Save Money... One Coupon At a TimeCouponing Bible: Couponing 101 Guide to Save Thousands Each Year: Extreme Couponing Strategies to Put Money in Your PocketThe Lazy Couponer: How to Save $25,000 Per Year in Just 45 Minutes Per Week with No Stockpiling, No Item Tracking, and No Sales Chasing!Extreme Couponing Without Extreme StressExtreme Couponing 101: What the stores don't want you to knowExtreme Savings: The #1 Guide To Getting Anything You Want For Free with Extreme Couponing 101 Secrets, Proven Ways To Save Money, and Financial Fitness Blueprint

 

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When Help Is NOT On The Way!

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When Help Is NOT On The Way Josh “The 7 P’s of Survival” On The 7 P’s of Survival we have Scott Finazzo and we talk about his second book “Prepper’s Survival Medicine Handbook. A Lifesaving Collection Of Emergency Procedures From U.S. Army Field Manuals”. Scott is a fellow firefighter of nearly 20 years, currently a Lieutenant … Continue reading When Help Is NOT On The Way!

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CHOOSE FREEDOM: What does this mean to me?

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CHOOSE FREEDOM: What does this mean to me? Bobby Akart “Prepping For Tomorrow” On the episode of the Prepping for Tomorrow program with Author Bobby Akart in player below, Bobby dives into a topic which has been the overriding theme of his critically acclaimed Boston Brahmin series —CHOOSE FREEDOM! In addition to being the title of … Continue reading CHOOSE FREEDOM: What does this mean to me?

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ML BANNER: Post-Apocalyptic Author

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ML BANNER: Best-Selling Post-Apocalyptic Author Bobby Akart “Prepping For Tomorrow” On this week’s episode of the Prepping for Tomorrow program with Author Bobby Akart, our special guest will be best-selling author, ML Banner. Michael “ML” Banner is a serial entrepreneur, having formed dozens of businesses over the years. He founded and currently runs SmallBiZ.com which … Continue reading ML BANNER: Post-Apocalyptic Author

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Mark DeBryan: Family Reunion Series Author

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Mark DeBryan: Family Reunion Series Author Bobby Akart “Prepping For Tomorrow” On this week’s episode of the Prepping for Tomorrow  Author Bobby Akart, best-selling post-apocalyptic fiction author P. Mark DeBryan joins the program. Mark has always been a bit of a vagabond. Born in Washington, raised in California, he joined the U.S. Coast Guard after … Continue reading Mark DeBryan: Family Reunion Series Author

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Book: Basic Electricity

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See larger image Basic Electricity (Dover Books on Electrical Engineering) This expanded and revised U.S. Navy training course text provides thorough coverage of the basic theory of electricity and its applications. It is unquestionably the best book of its kind for either broad or more limited studies of electrical fundamentals.It is divided into 21 chapters and an extensive section of appendixes. Chapters cover safety, fundamental concepts of electricity, batteries, series direct-current circuits, network analysis of direct-current circuits, electrical conductors and wiring techniques, electromagnetism and magnetic circuits, introduction to alternating-current electricity, inductance, capacitance, inductive and capacitive reactance, fundamental alternating-current circuit theory,

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KYLE PRATT: Best Selling Speculative Fiction Author

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KYLE PRATT: Best Selling Speculative Fiction Author Bobby Akart “Prepping For Tomorrow” On this week’s episode of the Prepping for Tomorrow program we have Kyle Pratt, author of the Strengthen What Remains series. In 1975 Kyle joined the United States Navy as a Cryptologic Technician. While in the service he met Lorraine Best of Plymouth, … Continue reading KYLE PRATT: Best Selling Speculative Fiction Author

The post KYLE PRATT: Best Selling Speculative Fiction Author appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

John L. Monk: Science Fiction and Post-Apocalyptic Author

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John L. Monk: Science Fiction and Post-Apocalyptic Author Bobby Akart “Prepping For Tomorrow” On this special episode of the Prepping for Tomorrow program with Author Bobby Akart, Bobby is joined by John L. Monk, author of the supernatural thriller series titled The Jenkins Cycle and his latest hot new release—Hell’s Children.  Author John L. Monk launched … Continue reading John L. Monk: Science Fiction and Post-Apocalyptic Author

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Book Review: Zombie Apocalypse Preparation

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zombie_apocalypse_preparation_houchins_thomas_book_review_survival

Zombie Apocalypse Preparation is a book of fiction.  I think.  I mean it says so in a disclaimer on Zombie Survival Guidethe inside first page.  If and when you buy this book purely for some humorous edification, you have to keep in perspective at all times and upon the turn of every day that the work is indeed fiction.  But you’re always going to wonder.  Houchins and Thomas’ tome is a fun read, if not admittedly outright silly at times and plain old stupid in some cases.  Remember, remember, its fiction.

By Dr. John J. Woods, a contributing author to Survival Cache & SHTFBlog

If you are a serious prepper or survivalist, then some of this material you might take as a personal affront, but I doubt it was meant to have that impact.  I mean after all, there is no such thing as a zombie to start with.  But if you substitute other character references such as roving thugs, Ferguson rioters, home invaders, home grown ISIS terrorists, and other such real criminals, then the book makes perfect sense, sort of.

Bullet Point Commentaries

As I was reading this 370 page paperback, I took a lot of random notes about thoughts, criticisms, Survival Guide for Zombiessalient points, useful information and many other notations, some which could only be summed up as questions which I will never have answered by the authors.  I present these bullet point thoughts here in no particular order.

  • At times you catch yourself asking “is this for real”, then you remember it is fiction.
  • The book puts down the very popular AR-15. Do these guys know guns at all?
  • Suppressors (not silencers) do require a Federal ATF NFA $200 permit tax, not a state tax.
  • The use of a slingshot to “sail” a fishing lure over water is ludicrous.
  • True military grade sniper rifles are only available to law enforcement or the military.
  • Discusses having firearms that are fully auto as if this were a common occurrence or option. It is not.
  • Who or what is a Johnny Two-Balls?
  • “Other bladed weapons” are highly impractical and most are unheard of.
  • Use of heavy equipment to kill zombies highly unlikely option. No access, no skills.
  • Concrete filled tires? During a SHTF, where or why find tires and fill them with concrete to roll down a hill?
  • 3 wheeled ATVs are no longer made and have not been for many years.
  • Mines in the yard? Where do they propose average citizens can obtain landmines?
  • “Mow Down Hoedown”? Too much gas, too much time for the effort.
  • Who is Fisherman F. Thompson?
  • There are comments here and there that are simply unnecessary such as “humping your mom last night.” Much of the foul language is unnecessary being a poor stab at humor.
  • Out of all the places listed to hide out, they left out elevators and forest service towers.
  • Oddly enough in this manual there is useful information intended as such or not, but you have to read close to glean it.
  • The book comes into its element in Section 8 , “Coping with Life in Zombietopia.”
  • Thoughts on dealing with assholes and malcontents is spot on.
  • The paragraph on Greed, page 204 in highly insightful. It is the root of all evil.  See Hillary and Bill Clinton.
  • Page 207, “Compromising is going to be a mainstay of your existence.” True that.
  • Page 246, “paying attention to the tiny details will prove to be a lifesaving hobby.”

Again, these are just some of the thoughts and comments I had about reading this book.  As a prepper, again, I found many items of useful information that could be put into practice, despite the book being fiction.  I do wonder if the authors intended that or just hit upon item merely by accident. Further, the reader has no idea who these authors are or anything about their backgrounds.  Perhaps their previous work was a romance novel or a skill guide to picking gardening tools.  It would have been nice to see their bio or if in fact these author names are even real.

Zombie Apocalypse Preparation is a laughable read.  You will get chuckles from it, but scratch your head at times.  Pick out what is useful or thought provoking and just laugh at the rest.  After all, it is a work of fiction.  Or is it?

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Prepping for medical issues.

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Been refreshing my medical kits over the last few weeks. I have an interest in staying alive and having some medical kit is a good way of doing that once the basics are sorted.

I’m a great believer in having a good kit with several items as well as some instructional books. I also believe […]

Book Review: Zero Footprint

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Private Military Contractor Book

Every once in awhile you need to stop and read a good book.  A book that will make you laugh, cry, and rethink howSurvival Book lucky you are not to be in war or working in one of these hostile nations.  The book Zero Footprint is one of those type of books.  Written by Simon Chase (aka Scott Charnick) and Ralph Pezzullo, the book details the life of a PMC (Private Military Contractor) in the modern era of Blackwater type mercenaries.

By Mark Puhaly, a contributing author to Survival Cache & SHTFBlog

The British Military

Scott Charnick spent 15 years in the British military, serving in Northern Ireland and overseas.  Before Sept 11th, he Private Military Contractorwas working in executive protection for very rich families such as those of philanthropist John Paul Getty Jr. and Prince Aga Khan IV.  He has recently been reported to guard such high profile athletes as American Swimmer, Michael Phelps.

Now after I read Zero Footprint but before I wrote this review, I checked Amazon and a few other places and apparently some people are claiming the author, Scott Charnick (Simon Chase), stretched the truth and embellished quite a few stories in his book.  I do not know if it is true that he embellished stories and frankly, from a pure entertainment perspective, I enjoyed the book immensely either way.

Related: Book Review American Sniper

I was mad for a minute when I first read that some of the stories were embellished but with Hillary Clinton claiming to be shot at by snipers in Bosnia and Brian Williams claiming that his helicopter in Iraq was hit by an RPG, I guess I am used to people stretching the truth a little bit (Never let the truth get in the way of a good story).  Also, who knows, maybe the people who are trying to discredit him are from an embarrassed government trying to cover up that the CIA was trying to ship weapons to Libya through a British holding company.  Either way, Zero Footprint is great, fast paced, and you will not find yourself wishing there was more action.

Zero Footprint begins with the author growing up in a tough neighborhood in England and eventually finding his way into a choice between the military or jail.  From there his military adventures begin but Charnick would eventually get hurt and was discharged from her majesty’s service.  From there he fell into the executive security field and eventually landed in the Private Military Contractor role after 9/11.

The CIA Lies?

What I like about Zero Footprint is that there are some lighter moments that remind me of my time in Marine Corps Secret Armieswhere someone would say something in a dire moment and everyone would start dying laughing.  One of those moments came during the early stages of the Afghanistan war post 9/11 where Scott (the author) found himself working as a contractor for the CIA.  The CIA paid him and his mates in cash, a lot of cash.  The problem was how were they going to get all of that CIA cash back to the UK without paying 60% in taxes.  Their CIA contact (Michael S.) told Scott that he and his teammates should give their money to a stranger in Kabul who will call his cousin in Dubai and the money will be waiting for them once they landed in Dubai.  When Scott tries to sell that to his mates, they look at him like he is bonkers.  One of the guys starts yelling in his face “Are you fucking on drugs mate?  Who told you that?” – Scott responds “Michael S” and his mate says “Well, Michael lies for a living.”  I found that moment in the book particularly funny considering Michael S was a CIA agent.

Related: Book Review The Mission, The Men, and Me

The book has some sad moments as well.  When the bullets start flying in these hot spots, good people inevitably die.  Many of Scott’s friends die in conflicts with terrorists around the globe and each one has a devastating effect on his mental health and plays a role in the unwinding of romantic relationships which is detailed in the book as well.  I have several friends who are in the PMC contractor world and I think this book gives a good perspective on how it is not all fast pace action with your hair on fire.  A lot of what you do is very tedious work and sometimes you are not treated very well by the people you are protecting.

Overall

Overall, I think this book is worth the read.  The author does not take the politically correct tone when it comes to the middle east, he basically says it is all one big shit hole.  Which we all pretty much know.  Whether or not the book is a 100% accurate will be for someone else to research and comment on.  Either way, I really enjoyed the read.  The book was a page turner and the action was fast paced when it came up.  There might be a movie in the works based on Zero Footprint.  I would definitely go see that.

About Mark: Former Marine Reconnaissance Team Leader, Marine Infantry Officer, Cross Fit Coach, Endurance Athlete, and Survivalist.

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WENDELL BERRY’S THOUGHTS ON CONSUMPTION AND OLDER TECHNOLOGY

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(By Guy Mendes, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=29726407)

(By Guy Mendes, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=29726407)

 

Wendell Berry’s nine rules for consumption

1. Be happy with what you’ve got. Don’t be always looking for something better.

2. Don’t buy anything you don’t need.

3. Don’t buy what you ought to save. Don’t buy what you ought to make.

4. Unless you absolutely have got to do it, don’t buy anything new.

5. If somebody tries to sell you something to “save labor,” look out. If you can work, then work.

6. If other people want to buy a lot of new stuff and fill up the country with junk, use the junk.

7. Some good things are cheap, even free. Use them first.

8. Keep watch for what nobody wants. Sort through the leavings.

9. You might know, or find out, what it is to need help. So help people.

 

Wendel Berry’s nine requirements for replacing an older technology

1. The new tool should be cheaper than the one it replaces.

2. It should be at least as small in scale as the one it replaces.

3. It should do work that is clearly and demonstrably better than the one it replaces.

4. It should use less energy than the one it replaces.

5. If possible, it should use some form of solar energy, such as that of the body.

6. It should be repairable by a person of ordinary intelligence, provided that he or she has the necessary tools.
7. It should be purchasable and repairable as near to home as possible.

8. It should come from a small, privately owned shop or store that will take it back for maintenance and repair.

9. It should not replace or disrupt anything good that already exists, and this includes family and community relationships.

You can learn more about Mr. Berry HERE and HERE.

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Success Stories!

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Success stories from a self made publisher & self made author. Tom “Galt Strike” Melanie Davis is the founder of Triumph Press, publishing a nonfiction genre of books including true and inspiring stories of overcoming or self-help.  She is also a bestselling author and ghostwriter, including The Triumph Book Series.  The Triumph Book is the first … Continue reading Success Stories!

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WALT BROWNING: Post-Apocalyptic Author

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WALT BROWNING: Post-Apocalyptic Author Bobby Akart “Prepping For Tomorrow” On this  episode of the Prepping for Tomorrow program with Author Bobby Akart, critically acclaimed post-apocalyptic author, Walt Browning, will be his special guest. As preppers, we hunger for knowledge and often seek out post-apocalyptic fiction as a source. We try to imagine ourselves in a … Continue reading WALT BROWNING: Post-Apocalyptic Author

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PRACTICAL PREPPING. PERIOD. LAUNCHES ON THE AUTHORS ON THE AIR GLOBAL RADIO NETWORK

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When you choose to live a preparedness lifestyle and building resilience you have to constantly challenge yourself, test and reset boundaries and change the game. Your willingness to do so could prove to be the difference in making your life all it can be or even in your survival some day.

In 2012, we created Practical Tactical. In 2014 I published two books, the Practical Tactical Quick Start Guide and then co-wrote Practical Prepping: No Apocalypse Required. In 2015, my daughter Riley arrived and our world changed forever. What can possibly top that? Well, nothing. Absolutely nothing. Now it’s 2016 and it is time to get back in the ring, keep creating, thinking, growing and prospering. It’s time to change the game…again.

 

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I am thrilled to announce that we are taking our vision of personal preparedness world wide as proud members of the Authors on the Air Global Radio Network as I launch my new show, Practical Prepping. Period.

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Practical Prepping. Period. is where preparedness theory meets the real world. We hope to bring you a variety of unique and wide ranging voices in the world of preparedness that will not only help you strengthen your preparedness when it comes to the basics, but also present a broader view to expand your ideas of what personal preparedness can be as we discuss some of the larger concepts, as well as the factors in today’s world that will make you realize why having a family disaster plan and a high level of individual resilience is a good idea. For example, the “three Es” (Environment, Energy, Economy) and how they work together will underpin our view of the world and our discussions. I feel this is important because regardless of where you are on the road to preparedness, the “three Es” will ultimately have an impact on your path. Other topics certain to be discussed on P3 are homesteading, gardening, first aid, firearms and self defense, climate, philosophy, water and food storage, not to mention spiritual preparedness.

I hope you will come along for the ride and make it a point to join us on the first Wednesday of each month at 9pm for our live shows where you will have the chance to call in and speak with our amazing guest. If that doesn’t work out for some reason have no fear, you can always download the podcast from the Authors On The Air Global Radio Network or ITunes and listen in whenever you get the chance.

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ALLEN GAMBOA: Post-Apocalyptic Fiction!

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ALLEN GAMBOA: Post-Apocalyptic Fiction! Bobby Akart “Prepping For Tomorrow” On this week’s episode of the Prepping for Tomorrow program with Author Bobby Akart, popular zombie apocalypse author, Allen Gamboa joins us. Our month long series featuring some of the best authors in the zombie apocalypse genre continues. With The Walking Dead’s record-breaking ratings (including its … Continue reading ALLEN GAMBOA: Post-Apocalyptic Fiction!

The post ALLEN GAMBOA: Post-Apocalyptic Fiction! appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.