Preparedness Lessons from Puerto Rico and Hurricane Maria

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Poor Puerto Rico. Hurricane Maria really pummeled the island, further exacerbating their existing problems (poor infrastructure, massive debt, and an out migration of youth). The Governor of Puerto Rico is warning of a brewing humanitarian crisis. Homes are destroyed. Power is out. Dams have collapsed. Streets are flooded. ‘Apocalyptic’ devastation. It’s a sad situation for. . . Read More

How To Deal When Someone Says “If Anything Happens, I’m Coming To Your House”

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My husband and I built our own house, raised and butchered pigs, chickens, cattle, sewed clothes, made quilts, and a lot of other things over the years. We make sure to have medical supplies and can a lot of food. My writing has been in quite a few magazines read by preppers and homesteaders. I. . . Read More

The Best Books for Living Off the Grid in 2017

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There are two general things you want out of your off-grid books. First, you need a general guide, that explains the basics to you and offers a starting point for the more advanced material. Then, you need books that go in-depth on specific topics, covering more ground than a general book ever could. In this. . . Read More

The post The Best Books for Living Off the Grid in 2017 first appeared on Backdoor Survival.

How to Be a Prepper In 22 Words

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How to Be a Prepper in 22 Words | Backdoor Survival

It seems fitting that while things are a bit more relaxed, prepping wise, we take a few moments to reflect upon preparedness strategies that are universal. I have given this a lot of thought and found that the rules of prepping boil down to just a few simple words, twenty-two to be exact. Here, in simplistic terms, are four steps every prepper needs to adhere to in order to succeed.

The post How to Be a Prepper In 22 Words by Gaye Levy first appeared on Backdoor Survival.

Do You Think Prepping Has Died?

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Do You Think Prepping Has Died | Backdoor Survival

Shortly after the 2016 election, I read an article by one of my blogging colleagues titled “Is Prepping Dead?”. I felt so strongly about what she said that I shared her article throughout the social media, hoping that others would see it and continue their preparedness efforts. Now, one month later, I can confirm that I too am seeing signs that prepping, while not dead, has certainly slowed down. This seems odd to me since the likelihood of a disruptive event has not changed. It is as strong now as ever.

What are those signals and why should we continue to be prepared and to proudly call ourselves “Preppers”?

The post Do You Think Prepping Has Died? by Gaye Levy first appeared on Backdoor Survival.

Survival Buzz: Seven Ways to Simplify and Get On With Life

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Seven Ways to Simplify and Get On With Life | Backdoor Survival

Why is it that humans, especially American humans, collect so much stuff?  It is not that we need all this stuff and it is not that we necessarily want it.  It just is. 

Perhaps we should blame the Madison avenue types so aptly portrayed in the now defunct TV series Mad Men. These days, it seems we are bombarded by ads for every conceivable item, from toothpaste, to fashion, to pharmaceuticals we never knew we needed.  Then there is the seduction of shopping!  Sometimes it  is simply too much, and at least for me, it often takes more than a modicum of will power to simply say no.

Seven Ways to Simplify and Get On With Life | Backdoor Survival

This applies to prepping gizmos as well.  Thankfully, for the past five or six years I have done most of my shopping on Amazon.com where items sit in my shopping cart or wish list for eons as I ponder the wisdom of a purchase.

It is not just consumables that get collected and stashed away in the various nooks and crannies of our lives.  The paper also overfloweth.  And so do the obligations or perceived responsibilities that fill our lives with an endless to do list.  The mental clutter of bill payments, household chores, and lunch with a long lost, but boring friend can be just as bad and perhaps worse than the physical stuff. 

I don’t know about you, but I hate it. I hate the excess stuff, the excess paper, and most of all, the excess list of obligations, chores, and must-dos.  It makes me want to run away, and indeed, I believe I just did!

Seriously, what does a frazzled prepper do to simplify a life that is chock full of stuff burning up space and burning up brain cells.  Here are some practical tips for both getting rid of the clutter, and for adding simplicity to your daily routine.  I call this “living a strategic life”.

Seven Ways to Simplify and Get on a Road to Living a Strategic Life

1.  My number one tip, and one that I embraced in 2003, is to downsize your living quarters. Everyone told me this was going to be difficult and it was.  At the time, I had no preps (who knew?) and although I missed having a separate room for each segment of my life, I somehow made it work.  Living in smaller quarters means less furniture, fewer clothes, and less room for clutter period.  The bonus is fewer housekeeping chores.

2.  Go paperless.  You can purchase a decent multi-function scanner  for as little as $125.  Make it a point to scan every new piece of paper that would normally get filed. This includes receipts for purchases as well as copies of invoices, bank statements, tax returns and other documents.

In addition, did you know that you can download copies of most product manuals online?  Do a Google search or check the manufacturer’s website.  You just might be surprised at the robust library of product manuals you can build, even for decades old appliances.

3.  Put your financial house in order.  Live within your means.  Come up with a simple budget.  And I mean simple.  If you try to create an elaborate schema of money in and money out, you will become overwhelmed, adding to the mental clutter.  Stop it.  Keep it simple – think grade school level simple. 

Getting rid of money woes is one of the best ways to remove stress and to de-clutter those brain cells for more important and interesting matters.   For some tips, read my Top 10 Tips for Debt-Free Living.

4.  Get rid of at least five items a week, every week.  Get out a trash bag and fill it up with junk.  Look around and surely you can find five things you do not need anymore.  Stow those items in the bag and get rid of them.  But please, junk is junk. Only give usable items to charity.  No one, not even the homeless, deserves your stinky old sneakers.

5.  Just say no to social commitments that do not interest you.  This is a very difficult thing to do.  How do you say “no, not interested” to folks that invite you to share some time with them?  What if you no longer have anything in common, find them boring, or simply don’t feel like it?  My recommendation is to be kind, but firm, and simply decline the invitation with grace. There is no big kahuna giving you ten lashes for saying no to a social invitation.  Just be nice, tell a little white lie if necessary, and stay home to watch a movie or take a nice long bath instead.

6.  Clean up your email.  Get rid of old newsletters and advertisements you no longer need or care about.  Find the unsubscribe button, and unsubscribe.  As a blogger, I ask you refrain from marking something spam unless it truly is an advertisement for cheap Viagra.  Instead, simply say you are no longer interested.  Spam is spam; a newsletter you signed up for and no longer enjoy is not.

7.  Recognize that good enough is just that: good enough!  This applies to house cleaning, cooking, laundry (forget the ironing) or any other aspect of life that is overwhelming in its exacting standards.  Learn to live with a lesser standard in those areas of life where it simply does not matter.

I have mentioned this before but some of the better books on de-cluttering your life are by Peter Walsh.  I especially like his book It’s All Too Much: An Easy Plan for Living a Richer Life with Less Stuff.  Pick up a copy at your local library or online.  You life will be better for it. 

The Free Mother Earth News Summit  

No one says it better than Marjory herself.  Register now and enjoy this free online event from the comfort of your home.  Did I mention I love Mother Earth News?

Register Now for the FREE Event

As a thank you gift, when you register you will receive these three eBooks as gifts:

The Complete Guide to Growing Tomatoes
Simple & Effective Watering Systems For Small Livestock
How To Keep Backyard Chickens

Current Backdoor Survival Giveaways

I have a huge backlog of reviews and giveaways so don’t be surprised if you begin to get giveaway fatigue. I am joking of course since I vet everything and if something is not worth my time or simply a lousy product, I will not mention it.  That said, look at this stack of stuff.  It is all coming soon along with other products I have purchased for testing.

In the meantime, here are this weeks open giveaways.  Remember, winners are always randomly selected so anyone can win.

Prepper Book Festival 13: Survival Medicine Handbook Third Edition + Giveaway

Note: There will be three winners of The Survival Medicine Handbook

Review: Emergency Solar Lighting With a Goal Zero Torch 250 + Giveaway

With all giveaways, winners are notified by email and have 48 hours to claim their prize or an alternate will be selected.  Once selected, the names of winners are also displayed in the Rafflecopter on the original giveaway article.  This usually happens on the Friday following the end of the giveaway.

Coming Soon to Backdoor Survival

Sometime within the next couple of weeks, you may see this message when you visit the site.  Since June, I have been working with a project manager and web developer to bring to you an updated user experience.  Nothing fancy, no fancy flashing videos or anything like that, but large print, more white space, and faster loading times.

I am told the site may be dark for up to a day, so please do check back!

One more thing.  As part of the migration, I added a new CONTACT ME form at the top of each page, and also updated the “About” me page.  If you are curious, check it out here.

The Final Word

This is a wrap for me this week.  I do want to encourage you to look for ways you can simplify your life.  It may be as easy as learning to say no, or as difficult as restructuring your life completely.  I am not advocating that you run away from home like Shelly and I just did, but rather that you think through what will make you happy and do just that.

I want you to live a joyful and strategic life!

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
Gaye

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to email updates.  When you do, you will receive a free, downloadable copy of my e-Book, The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.   Also check my Facebook page regularly for links to free or almost free eBooks that I personally reviewed just for you.

You can also vote for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!

Bargain Bin:  We have not heard much about Ebola or other pandemics lately but you can bet that the risk is still out there.  Here are some sick room supplies to have on hand as a preventative measure in the event things get serious.  Note that I am including a couple of amusements as well.  See the article: Seven Facts You Should Know About Ebola (or any other pandemic).

3M N95 Particulate & Respirator Mask: This is an inexpensive mask that can be used in a variety of emergency situations. They come in a box of 20 and are NIOSH-certified. The molded cone design is fluid and splash resistant and will greatly reduces your exposure to airborne particles.

Moldex 2730 N100 Respirator Mask:  Do not confuse P100 masks with the N100s.  N100 is what you want since the P100’s are used to filter particulate only and not gasses and vapors.  Note that if you are on the small side, you will need to order the smaller version which is the Moldex 2731.

Disposable Protective Coveralls: There are plenty to choose from.  I purchased these DuPont White Tyvek Disposable Coveralls With Hood in a medium and it fit me okay with a bit of excess room left over.  Shelly needs a large, definitely. The Sunday Survival Buzz #136   Backdoor Survival

3M TEKK Protection Chemical Splash/Impact GoggleThe Sunday Survival Buzz #129   Backdoor Survival:  I read a ton of reviews before settling on these.  I was so impressed with both the fit and comfort that I ordered another pair to use as a spare.  These are great and the price is right.

Spark Naturals Essential Oils:  It is no secret that I prefer essential oils from Spark Naturals.  They are well priced and of the highest therapeutic quality.  You enjoy an additional 10% off all items, including sale items, when using code BACKDOORSURVIVAL at checkout.

Shield Protective Blend:  Here is a direct link to one my most diffused essential oils.  If you can only afford a few oils, I would suggest Shield, Lavender and Melaleuca (Tea Tree).

Bicycle Canasta Games Playing Cards:  This timeless classic will keep the entire family occupied when the power it out.  Playing cards or board games should be in everyone’s preparedness kit.

Ticket To Ride: This my favorite board game, bar none.  Family friendly, you will spend hours in front of the fireplace playing Ticket to Ride with your favorite people.  This is worth the splurge.

~~~~~

Shop Emergency Essentials Sales for Fantastic Deals!

For over 25 years Emergency Essentials has been providing the highest quality preparedness products at great prices.  Plus, each month they feature sales that quite honestly are fantastic.  This month note the great sale prices on Mountain House freeze dried food.


~~~~~

Need something from Amazon (and who doesn’t)?

I earn a small commission from purchases made when you begin your Amazon shopping experience here. You still get great Amazon service and the price is the same, no matter what.

Amazon has a feature called Shop Amazon – Most Wished For Items. This is an easy tool for finding products that people are “wishing” for and in this way you know what the top products are.  All you need to do is select the category from the left hand side of the screen.

The Amazon Top Most Wished For Emergency and Survival Kit Items
Emergency Preparedness Items from Amazon.com
Bug Out Bag – Get Home Bag Supplies
Amazon Gift Cards

Help support Backdoor Survival. Purchases earn a small commission and for that I thank you!

~~~~~


Which are the best oils for your survival kit?  This article describes my top picks.

9 Best Essential Oils for Your Survival Kit | Backdoor Survival

The post Survival Buzz: Seven Ways to Simplify and Get On With Life by Gaye Levy first appeared on Backdoor Survival.

7 Ways to Recover When Life Sucks

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7 Ways to Recover When Life Sucks | Backdoor Survival

You know what a curve ball is, right?  In baseball, the term curveball is used to describe a pitch of the ball that is thrown with spin so that its path curves as it approaches the batter.  In other words, it is a ball that is unexpected and when it arrives, it takes you by surprise.

Alas, in life, curve balls come out of nowhere all of the time.  Something unexpected happens that throws you off your game.  In the survival and prepping world, this could be a flood, a storm, a power outage or something more esoteric such as the loss of one’s job, ill health, or even financial collapse.  When this happens, we suffer fear, disappointment, vulnerability, and a loss of control.  In general, life sucks.

7 Ways to Recover When Life Sucks | Backdoor Survival

So what can you do?  I know that I am the first to always remind you to go with the flow, to buck up and to move forward.  I am always coaching you to not let the woes of life and the world render you incapable of action.  On the other hand, when sucky things happen, the aftermath can be devastating to morale and to physical well being.

Couple the stress of prepping with life’s daily set backs, and you have a recipe for a train wreck.  Or do you?

Sucky Things Happen

I first wrote about life’s little (and not so little) curve balls in 2012.  At the time, over a two week period I had been slammed with a number of calamities and, to be honest, it sucked.

  • I zoomed out of the house for an overnight trip and left the freezer door open.  Not even a whole house generator can remedy that.   An entire freezer full of food gone.
  • I had to have my second root canal in less than two months.  No insurance for that, just a major hit to the bank account.
  • A young family member of a dear friend suffered a medical calamity with recovery long and arduous at best.
  • My kitchen faucet literally fell apart and I had no kitchen water for a week while waiting for a plumber and parts.  (Good thing my Berkey was on hand for drinking water.)

More recently, the curve balls have had to do with eye surgery (one eye good, the other less so), and the stress of selling my home then having the buyers back out.

Now don’t get me wrong.  I list these not to start a pity party but only to point out that in the normal course of living  life, curve balls can and do happen.  They happen all of the time for better or for worse.  They happen under very ordinary circumstances to very ordinary people.

 

Seven Ways to Recover from Life’s Little Curve Balls

 1.  Call a friend.  Have a nice little chat – not about your woes and certainly not a pity party.  Instead, talk about the movies, your favorite foods, gossip, anything.  Enjoy your friendship and take a break from whatever it is that troubles you.

2.  Get dressed up and look your best.  Pick out a nice outfit and wear it.  It makes no matter that no one is going to see you.  Wear make-up if that is your thing (ladies) and cologne (both men and ladies).  Look terrific when you peek in the mirror and your day will seem better.

3.  Take you dog for a walk or hike.  Rain or shine, take a walk with your dog or other pet.  Some good, old-fashioned fresh air will put a revitalized spring in your step.  Plus, the antics of our four-legged friends will most assuredly make you want to smile.

4.  Eat some comfort food.  Strange as it sounds, my favorite comfort food is a baked potato or two or three.  So whatever floats your boat, have some.  Make a meal out of chocolate cake if that is what it takes.  You are your own judge and jury and sometimes you need to cut yourself a bit of slack in the healthy food department.

5.  Get out the adult coloring books and go at it.  I have been known to cue up music or an audiobook then color for hours. As someone who was born with a missing artistic gene, I derive great pride in my creations and find peace and relaxation in the process. There really is something to it which is why I mention adult coloring so often

6.  Take a bubble bath. Add a few drops of your favorite essential oil plus some Epsom salts then fill the tub. Put on some soothing music or close the door and bask in the quiet.  It is just my opinion but these days the simple pleasure of taking a bubble bath is being lost in the shuffle of our connected lives.  Note:  bubble baths are for real men too, not just the ladies.

7.  Get over it.  Okay – this is the hard one.  But stuff happens.  It will always happen.  Once you have gone through steps 1 to 6, you will be in the right frame of mind to say “S*it happens so get over it”.  Slap yourself in the forehead as the light bulb goes off and move on.

The Final Word

When hit with daily nuisances and woes,  I tend to sit down and gather my wits as a coping mechanism.  And sometimes I cry.  But when all is said and done, I take it all in stride and prevail.  The next day I get up, wash my face, put shoes on, and start the day anew.  I become a soldier marching down my own path with my head held high and a goal and purpose.  Preparing, and being a prepper, has taught me that life goes on and that worse things can happen.  

The next time a curve ball is headed your way and you and you say “now what?”, why not pull out this list and act on it?  With a wee bit of fortitude and luck, your outlook will improve just like mine does.

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
Gaye

Note:  This article updates and adds new material to an  article first posted in June 2012.

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to email updates.  When you do, you will receive a free, downloadable copy of my e-Book, The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.

You can also vote for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!

Bargain Bin:  I frequently emphasis the importance of “Comfort” when it comes to survival.  Whereas being truly comfortable during and following a disruptive event is an oxymoron, here are items that I feel will contribute to our comfort, for better or for worse.  For more ideas, visit 16 Items To Help You Hunker Down in Comfort.

Let’s start with something we can use to brew coffee and move on from there.

Farberware Classic Stainless Steel Yosemite 8-Cup Coffee Percolator: Here is a link to my own percolator.  It is about $21 and without question, it makes great coffee.  I also own this manual coffee grinder and starting using it a couple of weeks ago when my electric grinder went T.U.:

Hario Ceramic Coffee Mill.  Note that whole beans store well when sealed in a Mason Jar (see How to Use a FoodSaver for Vacuum Canning).

Making biscuits in a cast iron pan - Backdoor Survival

Lodge Logic Cast Iron Pre-Seasoned Drop Biscuit Pan: Biscuits with jam are one of my favorite comfort foods.  This is the pan I purchased for biscuit making and to me, it was worth the cost.

Dorcy LED Wireless Motion Sensor Flood Lite The Sunday Survival Buzz   Volume 22: Having adequate light when the grid is down is another key to comfort.  Don’t let the $16 price lead you to think this wireless flood light is wimpy. I have two of these and feel that these lights are worth double the price.

Coleman Mini Lantern:  You already know that I have a think about flashlights but this is a slightly different take on portable lighting.  It is 7.5 inches tall lantern and weighs just seven ounces, including batteries.  And boy does it give off light.  Inexpensive plus, it is a genuine Coleman.

Mr. Heater Portable “Big Buddy” Heater:  Off course you are going to need a heat-source.  With the Mr. Buddy heater, you can use propane indoors safely.  It features an automatic low-oxygen shut-off system that automatically turns the unit off before carbon monoxide fumes reach dangerous levels in home.  To learn more about propane, read the series Propane for Preppers.

Ticket To Ride: This my favorite board game, bare none.  Family friendly, you will spend hours in front of the fireplace playing Ticket to Ride with your favorite people.  This is worth the splurge.

Bicycle Canasta Games Playing Cards:  This timeless classic will keep the entire family occupied when the power it out.  Playing cards or board games should be in everyone’s preparedness kit.

Coloring Books for Grown-Ups: This is the latest addition to my list of comfort items.  I hope you don’t think I am being silly because there really is something quite relaxing about coloring books. Don’t forget the crayons or Colored Pencils.  Curious about my favorite?  As of this moment, it is the Summer Nights Coloring Book.

~~~~~

Shop Emergency Essentials Sales for Fantastic Deals!

For over 25 years Emergency Essentials has been providing the highest quality preparedness products at great prices.  Plus, each month they feature sales that quite honestly are fantastic.  This month note the great sale prices two of my favorites, the Mobile Washer (Hand Operated Washing Machine) now only $14.95 and the Tote-able Toilet Seat and Lid, now only $11.79.

Preptember 

~~~~~

Need something from Amazon (and who doesn’t)?

I earn a small commission from purchases made when you begin your Amazon shopping experience here. You still get great Amazon service and the price is the same, no matter what.

Amazon has a feature called Shop Amazon – Most Wished For Items. This is an easy tool for finding products that people are “wishing” for and in this way you know what the top products are.  All you need to do is select the category from the left hand side of the screen.

The Amazon Top Most Wished For Emergency and Survival Kit Items
Emergency Preparedness Items from Amazon.com
Bug Out Bag – Get Home Bag Supplies
Amazon Gift Cards

Help support Backdoor Survival. Purchases earn a small commission and for that I thank you!

~~~~~


Are You Interested in Essential Oils?

20 All Purpose Remedies Using Essential Oils

The post 7 Ways to Recover When Life Sucks by Gaye Levy first appeared on Backdoor Survival.

Survival Buzz: Relieve Stress By Taking Time for a Progress Check

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Relieve Stress By Taking Time for a Progress Check | Backdoor Survival

Whereas I am not generally a doom and gloom person, sometimes I get both stressed and depressed over the state of the world, generally, and my country, specifically.  Furthermore, as much as I do like to stay informed, there are times when what I read is all too much and I just want to go hide under a rock somewhere.  The upcoming election is a good case in point.  Regardless of the outcome, my belief is that uncertain times are not over and further, bad times are right around the corner.

Does this make me angry?  Yes.  But unlike six years ago, I am now well-prepped and know that when it comes to material things, I will weather the storm.

Relieve Stress By Taking Time for a Progress Check | Backdoor Survival

Have you noticed that lately the Survival Buzz has become a discussion centering around the more psychological and mental aspects of prepping?  For me, this discussion and especially what I read in the comments, becomes  a personal catharsis.  I say this because as well-prepped as I am, it is often the mental process of coping that gets to me.  Believe it or not, I sometimes have the same doubts you do.

Will the crisis ever be over?  Will I even be able to get through the day without worrying about the future?  Am I safe?  Are my friends and relatives going to be okay?  And, finally, donning my tin-foil hat, is the government out to get me?

My goal today is to remind you that as angry, upset, disillusioned, and stressed as you may be about the state of the world, you should not become angry with life.  Take some time to relieve stress by taking a progress check.  Review your accomplishments and the steps you have taken to control your life and your destiny though self-reliance, independence, simplicity and a strong dose of frugality.

To get you started, here are some of my own accomplishments.

I now know that the amount of money I have only needs to equal the amount of money I need to do the things I want to do.  I don’t need to work myself to death trying to reach some multi-millionaire goal just for the sake of having the money.  The popular Tim Ferris book, The 4-Hour Work Week, describes this perfectly.

My food storage pantry is full and getting fuller with each passing month.  If needed, I could go two to three years without shopping for food.

I have plenty of water in the event the public water system becomes contaminated or unavailable. I also have multiple methods for both purifying and filtering water so that it becomes drinkable, including pool water and salt water.

My home is no longer cluttered with useless stuff although I do have boxes of old junk stored in the garage.  Those are going to get picked over and recycled or dumped sooner rather than later.  If you have not used something or have forgotten about it, now is the time to get rid of it!  By the way, for tips on letting go of old stuff, check out the classic book, It’s All Too Much by Peter Walsh.

My primary form of entertainment is reading, listening to audio books, watching films and TV shows streamed via Amazon Prime and Hulu, and taking hikes with my dog, Tucker, and husband, Shelly.  I am also not embarrassed to say that I do a good deal of adult coloring.

I rely on essential oils for 90% of my health care concerns.  OTC remedies are a thing of the past as I have learned through trial and error, how to control blood pressure, joint pain, headaches, and other maladies using oils from natures pharmacy.

Although my home is on the small side, it is both economical to live in and easy to maintain.  It provides me with everything I need to do the things I want to do.  That is not saying I do not want a larger home because I do.  But I do not need one.

And perhaps most important, I have made it a mission to continue to take more control of my life each day, each week, each month, and each year.  I do this one step at a time.

That is my list.  Why not take a few moments today and come up with your own list.  I guarantee the process of doing so will be calming, and that the rest of your day may be brighter as a result of this self-assessment.

No one I trust has ever said that prepping is easy 24/7.  Sometimes, a lot of times, it is hard.  Don’t let that stop you.  And don’t let that ruin your day.

Backdoor Survival Mail Bag & Reader Tips

I have written about using essential oils to control psoriasis and have had good luck treating Shelly with the formula described in Treating Psoriasis with Essential Oils.  Along those same lines, Sarah offers the following suggestion:

Been dealing with psoriasis for many, many years since I was a child. I found that like me, others have found better results with natural cures then steroid base.

What really helps me get to ‘break’ into the scales with oils is using a piece of plastic wrap on area after applying oils and lotion. I’d sleep with ace bandages on my knees and elbows to keep the plastic on longer. Until I was uncomfortable and throw them off at night, it would get into the scales and let the oils do the work it should.

Hopes this helps someone.

Loosely related to today’s Buzz, Milo shared this:

My family motivates me. I want to protect them as much as I possibly can so that we can also survive these possible horrible situations.

Although I do enjoy shiny new toys and guns…I do take prepping very seriously…it’s just part of my life and it’s important to stick with it as much as you can because no matter how well you plan and prep you still won’t be 100% ready.

I would add to the thinking outside the box and that’s to “NEVER EVER GIVE UP”….it’s just not an option….there’s too much at stake.

All I can say is “Amen” to that.

Current Backdoor Survival Giveaways

Prepper Book Festival 12: Be Your Own Herbalist + Giveaway

With all giveaways, winners are notified by email and have 48 hours to claim their prize or an alternate will be selected.  Once selected, the names of winners are also displayed in the Rafflecopter on the original giveaway article.  This usually happens on the Friday following the end of the giveaway.

Canning With Confidence – August 9th

Sometimes silly stupid things happen.  A few days ago I sent out an email and one of the links to register for this free online class did not work.  If you are still trying to register, here is a link that does work!  See you Tuesday.

Join me and Melissa K. Norris in a free online webinar on home canning the SAFE way. Register now.

Other Announcements

The site re-vamp is now in the hands of the designer. The final layout has been something I have been working on for a couple of months with the goal of speeding things up for faster load times.

I also have some back end domain changes going on as I switch registrars.  This most likely will be seamless but there may be three of four hours when access to the site it goofy.  In addition, there may be some delays in emails reaching my inbox.  None of this should become a huge disruption but I thought I should mention it none the less.

The Final Word

If you have ever had someone close to you get very sick and possibly die, then you know how precious life can be.  Every day counts.  That is why I so strongly advocate getting outdoors to enjoy the fresh air, finding some glory in a beautiful sunset, and enjoying some quiet time on a leisurely walk.  

You fill in the blanks. Life can be so much more beautiful when you take time for personal peace and simplicity.  I, for one, need to do more of that, and, believe it or not, writing helps. 

Although you will have to trust me with this, I truly believe you can relieve stress by taking time for a project check. Couple that with knowing that “done” is better than “perfect” and you should be good to go!  And that, for now, is all I am going to say about that.

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
Gaye

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to email updates.  When you do, you will receive a free, downloadable copy of my e-Book, The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.

Emergency Food Buyers Guide 2016-02-26

You can also vote for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!  

Bargain Bin:  Have you ever wondered what preps I value the most?  There are way too many to list so those I have listed below are a sampling of items I use all of the time and not simply tucked away for emergencies.

Note:  As I was going around the house looking for things to add to this list, I had to stop.  There are simply too many items so I will reserve the rest for another time.

UltraFire Mini Cree LED Flashlight:  I personally keep flashlights in every single room of my house and you should too. At the time of this writing, these flashlights are $3.20 with free shipping. Or you can purchase 4 for $13.99.   These favorites are super mini sized, bright and waterproof.  Plus, they use a single, standard AA sized battery.

mini Cree_0

Berkey Water Filter System:  For in home use, nothing beats the Berkey. My own Royal Berkey represents a key component of my water preps.   The Berkey system removes pathogenic bacteria, cysts and parasites entirely and extracts harmful chemicals such as herbicides, pesticides, VOCs, organic solvents, radon 222 and trihalomethanes. It also reduces nitrates, nitrites and unhealthy minerals such as lead and mercury. This system is so powerful it can remove red food coloring from water without removing the beneficial minerals your body needs. Virtually no other system can duplicate this performance.

NALGENE BPA-Free Water Bottle:  These water bottles have served me well.  I fill them up with water from my Royal Berkey and keep one bedside, one at my desk and another in the bathroom.  Keep in mind that price-wise, some colors will be more expensive so if color does not matter, go with the cheapest (currently the green version).

RAVPower 15W Solar Charger with Dual USB Ports: This compact, three panel, solar charger will charge two devices at once, including tablets, smartphones, Kindles, and even AA/AAA battery chargers.  Value priced at about $50.  For more information, read: Gear Review: RAVPower 15W Solar Charger with Dual USB Ports.

First Aid Ammo Kit:  Okay, this is an article and not one single item but I use my first aid kit at least once a week.

Panasonic eneloop AA New 2100 Cycle Ni-MH Pre-Charged Rechargeable Batteries:  These days, I try to use eneloops as much as possible.  They hold a charge forever – or so it seems – and work well in flashlights and small electronics.   Note:  I also use the Amazon Basics brand and will purchase those if the price is less.  I have done a lot of reading and to the best of my knowledge, they are an eneloop twin, branded by Amazon.

Grabber Outdoors Original Space Brand All Weather Blanket:  I was interested in a re-usable emergency blanket so I purchased one of these based upon the excellent reviews.  This space blanket is definitely “heavy duty” compared to the cheapies (not that they don’t have their place because they do).

Maximal Power battery charger from Amazon

Maximal Power FC999 Universal Battery Charger: This nicely built charger will charge charge AA, AAA, C, D, N, 9V, Ni-MH, Ni-CD, and Alkaline batteries. It has an LED display so that when you first put a battery in the charging bay, you know whether it is viable for charging or simply bad and ready to go back to the recycle box.

Preppers Holiday Gift Guide | Backdoor Survival

Amprobe BAT-250 Battery Tester:  I do not know anyone that is sorry they purchased or gifted an inexpensive battery tester.  Mine sits in my desk drawer and is used 3 or 4 times a week.  This newer version is an upgrade from the BAT-200 and well worth the additional dollar in cost.  I  especially like the redesigned side cradle that holds batteries securely in place during testing – no more erratic battery readings from movement off contacts.

Morakniv Craftline Q Allround Fixed Blade Utility Knife: ANOTHER FAVORITE! Also known as the Mora 511, this is now my favorite knife. It is made of Swedish steel and is super sharp.  Many Backdoor Survival have emailed me indicating this is now their favorite knife too.

~~~~~~~

Shop the Emergency Essentials Daily & Monthly Sales for Fantastic Deals!

For over 25 years Emergency Essentials has been providing the highest quality preparedness products at great prices.  Plus, each month they feature sales that quite honestly are fantastic.  One of my favorite sale items this month is this Mobile Washer (Hand Operated Washing Machine).

This is hand operated washing machine. Like a plunger, it uses a technique of pushing and pulling the water through clothes to clean them well without wearing them out. It uses a minimum of water and less soap due to the agitation motion. Use in a bucket (5-gallon suggested), sink or tub.

Emergency Essentials carries a wide variety of equipment and supplies – all at competitive prices.

~~~~~

Need something from Amazon (and who doesn’t)?

I earn a small commission from purchases made when you begin your Amazon shopping experience here. You still get great Amazon service and the price is the same, no matter what.

Amazon has a feature called Shop Amazon – Most Wished For Items. This is an easy tool for finding products that people are “wishing” for and in this way you know what the top products are.  All you need to do is select the category from the left hand side of the screen.

The Amazon Top Most Wished For Emergency and Survival Kit Items
Emergency Preparedness Items from Amazon.com
Bug Out Bag – Get Home Bag Supplies
Amazon Gift Cards

Help support Backdoor Survival. Purchases earn a small commission and for that I thank you!

~~~~~

Which are the best oils for your survival kit?  This article describes my top picks.

9 Best Essential Oils for Your Survival Kit | Backdoor Survival

The post Survival Buzz: Relieve Stress By Taking Time for a Progress Check by Gaye Levy first appeared on Backdoor Survival.

Survival Buzz: Do Old Geezers Think or Care About SHTF?

Click here to view the original post.

Do Old Geezers Think or Care About SHTF | Backdoor Survival

The term old geezer has been around for as long as I can remember with the common definition being “an elderly man that is extremely old”.  That seems like an oxymoron to me but what do I know?

Wikipedia has this to say:  “Geezer is a slang term for a man. In the UK, it can carry the connotation of either age or eccentricity. In the US, the term typically refers to a cranky old man.”  Okay, so an old geezer is both eccentric and cranky.

Do Old Geezers Think or Care About SHTF? | Backdoor SurvivalI would like to soften that definition a bit.  To me, an old geezer is someone who has lived life for awhile, learned a lot from the school of hard knocks, and yet, in spite of age or other limitations, has a healthy curiosity about things unknown. An old geezer can be 40 or 80, and can be a man or a woman.  On many occasions, I have thought of myself as an “old geezer”.  Now that we have set aside a definition, today I ask and answer:  Do old geezers think or care about SHTF?

My answer is: Of course they do!

For the past couple of months, the concept of old geezers and prepping has been something I have given a lot of thought to. Perhaps it is because of the questions I get in comments and emails, or perhaps it is simply the recognition that many folks, regardless of age, are hungry for more than the simple basics of preparedness.  They thirst for material that melds mindset and inspiration with the tactical and practical aspects of prepping,  Heck, I seek that out for myself every single day of the week.

And then there is a popular website (name withheld to protect the guilty) that recently posted an article on prepping for seniors and suggested if you had relatives in their sixties, to stock up on Depends and obtain names of assisted living facilities that were prepper friendly.  Sixty?  Good grief!

Regardless of your age and where you are in your preparedness efforts, I feel safe in assuring you that old geezers do indeed care not only about prepping, and SHTF, but a lot of other things as well.

Backdoor Survival Mail Bag & Reader Tips

This tip came in from Bonnie this week via comments and it is such a good one that I just had to share it for all to see.

I use 5 gallon buckets to store COMFORT FOODS and it is marked on the bucket as such.

This is vacuumed sealed candies, snacks (that I purchase after a Holiday like Christmas, Valentines Day, Easter, Halloween) to get 75-90% off the regular prices. I open the bags and make individual bags of goodies with the vacuum sealer and fill with the GOODIES OF MY FAMILIES CHOICE.

And speaking of buckets, see below.

Current Backdoor Survival Giveaways

You are going to love this one.  5 gallon buckets come second only to mason canning jars in my home.  There will be three winners this time around.

Prepper Book Festival 12: 5-Gallon Bucket Book + Giveaway

With all giveaways, winners are notified by email and have 48 hours to claim their prize or an alternate will be selected.  Once selected, the names of winners are also displayed in the Rafflecopter on the original giveaway article.  This usually happens on the Friday following the end of the giveaway. 

Prepping Gear That I Love

Last week I tested a new flashlight, this time from “LEDNut”.  This style of heavier, more powerful flashlights have become a new favorite even though most run between $13 and $20.

This particular model, the LED Nut XML-T6, is priced at the low end of that range and so far performs as well as the others I own that are similar.  It comes with a rechargeable Lithium ion battery, charger, and an adapter for AAA batteries.

LEDNut XML-T6 | Backdoor Survival

Will it ever replace all of those Blocklites and $4 mini crees I own.  No, not really because this is not what I would call a pocket flashlight.  That said, when I take Tucker the Dog out at night, this is the flashlight I use.  Given that it has a powerful beam that extends 1,000 feet, it is also better for walking at night and tactical purposes.

Subscriber Update

Last week I held a subscriber-only giveaway for a $25 Amazon Gift Card.  I know $25 is not much but hey, free is free.  There were no strings attached to the giveaway and no entry requirements other than being a subscriber.  I was overwhelmed by the response!

The reason I mention this now is I am planning to do at least two of these giveaways a month (and I have additional Amazon gift cards sitting in my desk to prove it.  All I can say is thank you again to subscribers.  If you want to get in on the fun, click below to sign up.  You will also get a copy of my Emergency Food Buyers Guide for free.

Emergency Food Buyers Guide 2016-02-26

Coming Soon:  The Herbs and Essential Oils Super Bundle

As you know, a big part of my preparedness strategy has to do with medical self care and lessening my reliance on organized medicine.  That is not to say that I do not go to doctors and health care professionals because I do.  Instead, I want to be prepared for a time when professional healthcare may be inaccessible for any number of reasons.

For the past few weeks, I have been evaluating the many packaged bundles and online courses being offered this summer.  The one that caught my eye (and the only one) was “The Herbs & Essential Oils Super Bundle” that has been put together by Ryan and Stephanie from Ultimate Bundles.  Since I have worked with them before, I was excited to learn about it and took the time to review the contents.

All I can say is WOW!  This is an incredible eBook and eCourse bundle featuring authors and experts I either know about or have worked with in the past.

I will have more information next week but if you would like to be notified when it goes live, check it out here:
The Herbs & Essential Oils Super Bundle.

The Final Word

At the risk of sounding frivolous, there are days when we all take preparedness too seriously.  I feel there is room for all of us to laugh a little, even at ourselves, while we continue to examine how we are going to prepare for uncertain times.

Will there be an honest-to-goodness “lights out” cyber attack?  Is the Second Great Depression right around the corner?  Is the government going to round up prepper-types and confiscate our land, food, and arms for the greater good?

These questions have no age.  I hear them asked by twenty-somethings and by eighty-somethings,  And so, I say it again.  Yes, indeed.  Old geezers absolutely do think, care, and prepare for when the stuff hits the fan.

Old or young, I would love to hear your thoughts and comments on this subject.

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
Gaye

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to email updates.  When you do, you will receive a free, downloadable copy of my e-Book, The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.

You can also vote for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!

Bargain Bin:  I carry my portable survival kit whenever I leave the house.  The nice thing about it is that it fits neatly in a pocket, day pack, glove box, or handbag.  If you are interested in more details or need assistance building your own kit, see 8 Essential Items: The Perfect Portable Survival Kit.

In the meantime, here are some items you should consider carrying with you as you travel near and afar.

100 BIC-style Lighters Disposable Classic Lighter:  Running about 16 cents each and free shipping, these are great to have on hand for both survival and barter use. Want fewer than 100.  You can also get a pack of 50, currently priced at $11.

Zippo Street Chrome Pocket Lighter:  Zippo has been creating virtually indestructible, windproof refillable lighters for more than 75 years. The Zippo Street Chrome pocket lighter is no exception. This lighter features a classic textured chrome finish and carries the same lifetime guarantee–to either work or be fixed by Zippo free of charge–for life.  All wearable parts including flints and wicks are replaceable.  Every prepper should own at least one Zippo!  Learn more about Zippos in the article What You Need to Know About Zippos and Lighter Fuel.

Blocklite Ultra Bright 9V 6 LED Flashlight: I own six of these little gems. There is a similar flashlight called the Pak-Lite (which is more expensive) but it does not have a high-low switch like this one. These little flashlights just go and go, plus, they make good use of those re-purposed 9V alkaline batteries that you have recharged with your Maximal Power FC999 Universal Battery Charger.

Kershaw OSO Sweet Knife: This “oh so sweet” knife is solidly built, stainless steel knife that comes razor sharp right out of the package. It will pretty much cut through anything the price is amazing.

Windstorm Safety Whistle: This particular whistle can be heard a long distance away and above howling wind and other competing sounds.  I love my cheapie whistles but this is the one I would depend on for wilderness survival.

Lavender Essential Oil:  This is the Swiss army knife of essential oils. My favorite lavender oil is from Spark Naturals.  Enjoy a 10% discount with code BACKDOORSURVIVAL.

Rectangular Tin with Window: I found this tin that is very similar to mine on Amazon.com.  Chances are you have something similar already that can be repurposed for free.

LifeStraw Personal Water Filter:  Too large for a pocket kit but important to have with you is the Lifestraw Personal Water Filter.  At only 2 ounces (in weight), the LifeStraw is suitable for a backpack or bug out bag.  It is easy to use and requires no chemicals to remove a  minimum of 99.9999% of waterborne bacteria.

~~~~~~~~~~

   Shop the Emergency Essentials June Summer Sales Event

For over 25 years Emergency Essentials has been providing the highest quality preparedness products at great prices.  Plus, each month they feature sales that quite honestly are fantastic.  And now, for a limited time, they are bringing back their warehouse sale with savings up to 85%!

Emergency Essentials Summer Sales EventEmergency Essentials carries a wide variety of equipment and supplies – all at competitive prices.


~~~~~

Need something from Amazon (and who doesn’t)?

I earn a small commission from purchases made when you begin your Amazon shopping experience here. You still get great Amazon service and the price is the same, no matter what.

Amazon has a feature called Shop Amazon – Most Wished For Items. This is an easy tool for finding products that people are “wishing” for and in this way you know what the top products are.  All you need to do is select the category from the left hand side of the screen.

The Amazon Top Most Wished For Emergency and Survival Kit Items
Emergency Preparedness Items from Amazon.com
Bug Out Bag – Get Home Bag Supplies
Amazon Gift Cards

Help support Backdoor Survival. Purchases earn a small commission and for that I thank you!

~~~~~

~~~~~~~~~~

Are You Interested in Essential Oils?

OOTM is a great value and shipping is free!Spark Naturals Oil of the Month Club | Backdoor Survival

The Spark Naturals Oil of the Month Club is the best value out there – all oils are 15ml bottles – shipped out to you once a month (on the same date you ordered the product). The price is $15.99 a month and includes shipping and tax. This is a great way to collect oils at a discounted price.

But there is more!  Introducing the Premium Oil of the Month Club. The Premium OOTM Club features both products and higher priced oils.  The cost is $24.99 per month and shipping is free.

Additional Reading on Backdoor Survival:  Spark Naturals Oil of the Month Club

If you would like to learn more about the Oil of the Month Club, visit the page I created for you (shown below) or head on over to Spark Naturals web site.

Visit the Spark Naturals Oil of the Month Club page for additional information.

The post Survival Buzz: Do Old Geezers Think or Care About SHTF? by Gaye Levy first appeared on Backdoor Survival.

Survival Buzz: Preparedness Is A Lifestyle That Needs To Be Done Your Way

Click here to view the original post.

Preparedness Lifestyle That Needs To Be Done Your Way | Backdoor Survival

Call it a feeling but I sense the fear mongers are coming out of their closets and getting ready to scare the unsuspecting would-be preppers this summer.  Perhaps it is due to the upcoming conventions where our presidential candidates will be selected, or perhaps it is simply that time of year.

Whatever the reason, I am dismayed by the number of pitches reaching my inbox from less than credible sources.  Some of these sources are video marketing companies with no personal prepping experience, and others are so-called prepper-bloggers who are frauds.

That is a harsh statement but if the shoe fits?

Preparedness Lifestyle That Needs To Be Done Your Way | Backdoor Survival

I have said this before but it bears repeating.  I am not an expert.  I am a person who one day back in 2010 decided I needed to prepare for disruptive events, be they acts of Mother Nature or acts of man.  I share what I have learned through extensive research coupled with personal experience. I do not believe everything I read and sometimes, with more experience under my belt, I change my mind.

Publicly, I do not do religion and I do not do politics, even though I have very strong leanings on both.  I believe that preparedness is a lifestyle and one that you adapt to according to needs, budget, and circumstance.  Prepping needs to be done your way, and in a manner not burdened with fear and trepidation.

If this is not what you are looking for when visiting a preparedness blog, then this site is not a good fit for you.

You have my word that I am sincere.  If there is something you do not see on my site, it is because I don’t know enough about it, or don’t believe in it.  I value my integrity and would feel horrible if I steered you in the wrong direction.  Regardless of my personal feelings, I will not slander other bloggers or other websites unless they are crooks.  Even then, sometimes it is best for me personally to move on.  Life is too short to dwell on the negative.

This is a lifestyle blog.  It is about preparedness first, followed by a heavy dose of self-reliance, do-it-yourself, and natural remedies.  It is also about living life.  I do hope you like what you see and will keep coming back but if not, no hard feelings.

Thank you for letting me get this off my chest.  If you have a specific question, contact me via email and I will do my best to respond privately.

Using a Diffuser and Essential Oils to Relax and Be Calm

A reader recently asked about diffuser blends and specifically about the recipe I use when I am anxious and want to calm down a bit.  Some of you might recognized the formula as being similar to my blood pressure blend, and indeed, it is similar.

Calming Diffuser Blend
30 drops Ylang Ylang
15 drops Cypress
15 drops Marjoram
15 drops Rosemary

Add this mix of essential oils to a re-purposed essential oil bottle. When stressed, anxious, or simply in need of some relaxation, add 6  to 8 drops to the diffuser along with the requisite amount of water.  This recipe will provide enough oils for a dozen diffuser session.

I find this blend to be calming and sometimes use it at bedtime or during my nightly session of adult coloring.

Note:  Re-purposed essential oil bottles are perfect for storing your custom diffuser blends.

I choose to purchase my essential oils from Spark Naturals.  They are reasonably priced, especially with the 10% discount you get using my code BACKDOORSURVIVAL at checkout.

Additional Reading:  A Complete List of All Backdoor Survival Articles About Essential Oils

Current Backdoor Survival Giveaway

This week I roll out the first book in Prepper Book Festival #12.  Enjoy the interview with author James Hubbard and enter to win one of the two copies that are up for grabs in the giveaway.

The Survival Doctor’s Complete Handbook + Giveaway

With all giveaways, winners are notified by email and have 48 hours to claim their prize or an alternate will be selected.  Once selected, the names of winners are also displayed in the Rafflecopter on the original giveaway article.  This usually happens on the Friday following the end of the giveaway. 

Last Day for a Replay of the Sun Oven Class

Hundreds of you either attended the online class or watched the replay.  Today is the last day the replay will be available so if you missed it, you still have time to learn about the 13 ways you can harness the sun for solar cooking and preparedness purposes.

Although the class was heavily skewed toward the Sun Oven, there were some good tips that could be applied to any solar cooker, including your build yourself.  Just be aware that food being cooked in a DIY solar cooker will likely take longer.

Watch the Sun Oven Replay Until Midnight June 11

At the end, there is a special offer where you can purchase a Sun Oven plus accessories for 33% off with free shipping. And just so you know,  Sun Ovens International has been a sponsor of Backdoor Survival from almost the beginning. They are good people and a good company and have earned my endorsement.

Get a Sun Oven for 30% off

The Final Word

Lest you think otherwise, I encourage you to soak up as much knowledge as you can about being prepared.  Be mindful of potential calamities that could occur in your surrounding area and prepare for those.

If you are ready for a week on your own, begin planning for a month.  Have that covered?  Decide whether you need to plan for three months or a year.  Personally, I have prepped enough to be on my own without power and supplies for over a year.  I have learned to wash clothes the old fashioned way, and how to get rid of waste when the toilets or sewer no longer work.  I can cook outside using a variety of methods and likewise, can start a fire and forage for food.

Have I done enough?  I don’t know.  Maybe I never will.

Only you can decide if you are where you need and want to be.  There is no right or wrong; there is simply being prepared.

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
Gaye

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to email updates.  When you do, you will receive a free, downloadable copy of my e-Book, The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.

Emergency Food Buyers Guide 2016-02-26

You can also vote for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!

Bargain Bin:  Below are links to products mentioned today as well as a few other essentials.

Spark Naturals Essential Oils: I use essential oils from Spark Naturals exclusively.  They are high quality yet reasonably priced.  In addition, there are no membership fees and a distributor relationship is not necessary to get best pricing. Interested in checking them out?  Backdoor Survival readers get a 10% discount by using coupon code BACKDOORSURVIVAL at checkout!

ZAQ Noor Diffuser:  Of my three diffusers, this is my favorite and is therefore the one I recommend.  It puts out a strong, fragrant mist that is both soothing and healing.  My second most favorite is the ZAQ Dew (pictured below).  It is very quiet.

With both diffusers, the really cool thing is that the light (which can be turned off) changes colors all by its own self.  Very soothing and I love it!

NOW Foods Essential Oils:  I use essential oils from Spark Naturals.  For healing purposes, I feel they are superior.  On the other hand, NOW Foods has decent essential oils at a budget price plus they can be purchased at Amazon.com.  Here are a few to get you started:  NOW Foods Rosemary Oil, NOW Foods Peppermint Oil, and Now Foods Lavender Oil.

Countdown to Preparedness: The Prepper’s 52 Week Course to Total Disaster Readiness:  One of the more frequent questions I get has to do with books for newbie preppers.  There are a number of big fat books out there that are great but for most of us, it is much easier to bite things off in manageable chunks.  For that reason, I like to suggest books by Jim Cobb.  Jim is the real deal and a prepper himself.  This is just one of his books and highly recommended.

The Secret Garden:  I am addicted to coloring and this is my latest purchase.  I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.

LolliZ 50 Colored Pencils Set: If you splurge on coloring books, consider going cheap on pencils.  These bargain pencils are great.  I paid $9.99 for the set of 50 but a few days later they were only $6.99.  Still, $9.99 was a great price in and of itself.  Note that this set is heavy into the greens and blues.

Alaska May 2013 312 Lifestraw

LifeStraw Personal Water Filter:  The LifeStraw contains no chemicals, no batteries and no moving parts to wear out. It features a a high flow rate and weighs only 2 oz. It works quickly, taking roughly 3-5 seconds of sucking to start the flow of water through the filter. It’s ultra-light and inexpensive but effective.  There is also the LifeStraw Family that will purify up to 12 liters per hour.

Tac Force TF-705BK Tactical Assisted Opening Folding Knife 4.5-Inch Closed: FAVORITE! This is a great knife that is currently priced at under $9.00 with free shipping.  Not only that, it is ranked as the #1 best seller at Amazon in both the camping and hunting knives categories.  The reviews raved about this knife so I bought one, used it, and and can recommend it.  See The Inexpensive Tac-Force Speedster Outdoor Knife.

Note:  the price can vary by color so if you are not particular, scroll through the colors and safe a couple of bucks.

~~~~~~~~~~

   Shop the Emergency Essentials June Summer Sales Event

For over 25 years Emergency Essentials has been providing the highest quality preparedness products at great prices.  Plus, each month they feature sales that quite honestly are fantastic.  And now, for a limited time, they are bringing back their warehouse sale with savings up to 85%!

Emergency Essentials Summer Sales EventEmergency Essentials carries a wide variety of equipment and supplies – all at competitive prices.


~~~~~

Need something from Amazon (and who doesn’t)?

I earn a small commission from purchases made when you begin your Amazon shopping experience here. You still get great Amazon service and the price is the same, no matter what.

Amazon has a feature called Shop Amazon – Most Wished For Items. This is an easy tool for finding products that people are “wishing” for and in this way you know what the top products are.  All you need to do is select the category from the left hand side of the screen.

The Amazon Top Most Wished For Emergency and Survival Kit Items
Emergency Preparedness Items from Amazon.com
Bug Out Bag – Get Home Bag Supplies
Amazon Gift Cards

Help support Backdoor Survival. Purchases earn a small commission and for that I thank you!

~~~~~


Which are the best oils for your survival kit?  This article describes my top picks.

9 Best Essential Oils for Your Survival Kit | Backdoor Survival

~~~~~~~~~~

Are You Interested in Essential Oils?

OOTM is a great value and shipping is free!Spark Naturals Oil of the Month Club | Backdoor Survival

The Spark Naturals Oil of the Month Club is the best value out there – all oils are 15ml bottles – shipped out to you once a month (on the same date you ordered the product). The price is $15.99 a month and includes shipping and tax. This is a great way to collect oils at a discounted price.

But there is more!  Introducing the Premium Oil of the Month Club. The Premium OOTM Club features both products and higher priced oils.  The cost is $24.99 per month and shipping is free.

Additional Reading on Backdoor Survival:  Spark Naturals Oil of the Month Club

If you would like to learn more about the Oil of the Month Club, visit the page I created for you (shown below) or head on over to Spark Naturals web site.

Visit the Spark Naturals Oil of the Month Club page for additional information.

~~~~~~~~

The post Survival Buzz: Preparedness Is A Lifestyle That Needs To Be Done Your Way by Gaye Levy first appeared on Backdoor Survival.

Tipping Our Hat to the Next Generation of Preppers

Click here to view the original post.

Tipping Our Hat to the Next Generation of Preppers | Backdoor Survival

Over the course of the last few months, I have given a lot of thought to the role of our more seasoned citizens as harbingers of the prepper movement.  Since I am very much a baby boomer, I throw myself into that lot.  As far as I am concerned, boomers are smart, funny, active, resourceful, and, for the most part, experts in perseverance.

Many of us are also MSH people, a term coined by my pal George Ure back in the early seventies. What does MSH mean?  Make “stuff” happen!

As easy as it is to praise my own generation, I find it trendy to disparage the younger generation, commonly referred to as Millennials.  Why is that?  I know some pretty awesome young adults that are as responsible and as caring about the world as I am.  They prep as well; perhaps not to the extent we do, but as much as they can given their budgets and the time to learn old-time pioneer-style skills.

Tipping Our Hat to the Next Generation of Preppers | Backdoor Survival

 

More over, they care about the planet, our country, and global politics.  It scares them as much as it scares us.

It is almost spooky to learn that my colleague Richard Broome has had recent thoughts along those very same line.  A couple of weeks ago, he shared his latest think piece with me and I do have to say, he is correct in his description of “quiet leadership at work”.

Quiet Leadership At Work

Let the word go forth from this time and place, to friend and foe alike, that the torch has been passed to a new generation of Americans–born in this century, tempered by war, disciplined by a hard and bitter peace, proud of our ancient heritage–and unwilling to witness or permit the slow undoing of those human rights to which this nation has always been committed, and to which we are committed today at home and around the world.

– Inaugural Address by President John F. Kennedy, January 20, 1961

~~~~~

Except for my brief comments about the ISIS attacks in Paris on November 13, 2015 I have been out of communication with the readers of Backdoor Survival since late last summer. But with Paris, no matter how busy I felt I was, I simply had to weigh in with my personal thoughts. I felt it was my responsibility. The events in Paris were so horrific to me and so clearly signaled a prognostication of what was to come, that I felt compelled to speak out. The night of that event I wrote the following for Backdoor Survival.

“The events in Paris Friday evening were a dark day in “The City of Light.” Terrorism became more real yesterday. In time, we will all look back at what we will ultimately realize was an epic event that should have sent us all a clear message. “I am coming to get you. This isn’t going away. It is coming to America too.” We have a rising tide of global jihadist aggression underway and I think most people are missing the religious fervor behind this movement and the terrorists’ willingness to do anything it takes to win.

Here is where strong leadership in this country is really going to matter. In a time of coming elections, we need leaders who do a better job of telling all Americans what we really stand for, the values and meaning of America, the special sauce that makes up our country, and the need for our national commitment to defeat ISIS.

Can we turn this around? Yes. We can.

We must. 

Richard Earl Broome
Bozeman, Montana”

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We have had, since that day, even more horror, San Bernardino in December and then Brussels in March. All very frightening and sobering and yet…I am afraid even much more and much worse will come (if you can even conceive of that possibility).

As many of you already know, I teach at a university. When I teach, my students always receive my full attention, so my article writing is put to the side during most of the year. But now, with the semester almost over, I find I have a weekend, well temporarily anyway, where I am not looking at a stack of papers to grade. As I write this article on this really nice spring Sunday afternoon in Montana, I know my student’s are busy writing their final papers and projects for me.

Their final class assignments will all arrive in the next few days and be placed into my hands with a frantic, nervous rush. Thus…even more stacks of papers are being created and looming out there for me to grade to finish the spring semester at Montana State University. But… this is what is expected of me and I do joyfully embrace my responsibilities to teach this millennial generation. (Even if I have to grade all day long on nice sunny spring days in Montana for the next two weekends.)

Like many of you, I was raised in a home where hard work was deemed a virtue and indulging yourself by feeling a little lazy and just pleasantly doing nothing much, even on slow Sunday afternoon, always resulted in my mother or father finding something constructive for me to do. Even at my advanced age, I now find I just can’t seem to get past that feeling from my youth, the guilt I am not doing something worthwhile even when I am finished with my daily tasks. So now I do a bit of writing when the decks clear some. (Actually, just between us, I probably should be helping get the lawn ready for summer this afternoon. Hmmm, guilt rearing its head again. No. I really do want to write this think piece today.)

One of the courses I am teaching at Montana State University is in the Honors College. It has the title “Critical Perspective on Leadership in the 21st Century.” We cover many serious issues ranging from the impact on leadership in the age of the Internet, blogs and a non-stop 24X7 news cycle (I was able to have both the governor of Montana and his opponent for the fall election come and speak to the class), to the approaching takeover by the millennial generation. It is a seminar course that covers the many, many leadership challenges that face all of us.

This spring semester I made the following a writing assignment for these honors students. I wanted them to demonstrate to me some critical thinking skills, in short, not to just memorize and simply repeat back to me what others think about leadership, but express some original thoughts of their own.

I asked them to answer this question.

“A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: We did it ourselves.” — Lao-Tzu, Chinese philosopher, 6th Century BC.

This 8000-thousand-year old quote is one of the more famous ones found in the writings of Lao-Tzu, a Chinese philosopher and the founder of Taoism. 

1) What do you think he meant by this quote? What style of leadership do you think he was suggesting? Support your argument.

2) Given the multilevel complexities of our current global society, such as religious wars, asymmetric threats to the citizens of all nations, economic uncertainties and the wide spread use of social media with near instant global communications:

a) Is this style of leadership still possible, or even rational to use? If you could, what would you tell Lao-Tzu about the demands on global leaders today and the leadership style they must use in 2016? 

b) Or…is the leadership style Lao-Tzu suggests still the most effective?

The papers about this question were simply extraordinary. Wow! What thoughtful papers.

My students wrote very contemplative essays that reflected deep thinking. Interestingly, while I expected to read a general opinion that “quiet leadership” (such as Lao-Tzu suggested) could no longer really work well; many students embraced it as the better way to lead people. The students convinced me they were already, informally trying to deal with what they see in the world today.

And…they made an interesting argument.

I have no idea what the demographics are of the readers of Backdoor Survival, but I suspect they could involve some gray hair, facial wrinkles and a little less skill with computers and the Internet than we would all like to admit. (Just saying and me too.)

The emerging millennial generation is much different. Here is an example. I will text on my cellphone perhaps once or twice a day. Generally, my messages are like, “Do I need to pick up something on the way home, milk?” My students laughed when I told them this. They text forty to fifty times a day and share opinions, views, discuss global events and come together more than you would think to face the new realities of the world. I have discovered there is a silent discussion going on and quiet leadership at work by the millennial generation, trying to direct and shape the issues and events they see.

My students revealed that the very power and impact of the Internet, blogs and 24X7 news cycles has resulted in a conversation, that most of older generations do not realize is going on. Opinions are being shaped and desired changes being discussed on-line. You and I see the loud, glaring cacophony we have to endure each day from the public news media. What the students see is a quiet, reasoned discussion occurring in the background.

Which brings me to the prepper movement. The verse from John 9:25 comes to mind, and to paraphrase, “I was blind, but now I can see.” With all of the discordant sounds, the tragic events and the general fury we find all around us these days, I’ve found hope from working with the millennial generation. I think we will be in good hands in the future, if we can work with them effectively.

I have published on Backdoor Survival several think pieces about how we need to do more to create a national, public conversation and to build more of a culture of preparedness movement. I now wonder if my strategy is wrong. What we may need to do is to better understand this emerging generation of leaders and how they communicate and effect change. Then, work to get them more involved with us. They are in the same leaky boat we are. Moreover, year-by-year they will be slowly rising up to take over more and more positions of responsibility in our society.

How do we go about connecting millennials with older preppers? It would seem to me a serious, important goal for us, which frankly, I am just beginning to think about. Many of us have children and grandchildren who are millennials. Don’t we want them all prepared? Yes I think we do and, if they are willing, eventually to accept “the torch” as we pass it to them.

What do the other readers of Backdoor Survival think?

By  Richard Earl Broome; April 17, 2016.  Copyright 2016. All Rights Reserved.

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Richard Earl Broome is a contributing author and friend to Backdoor Survival. He has lived an extraordinary life rising from an Army private to an Army colonel who served on the White House staff for two Presidents of the United States as a member of their National Security Council staff.

He is considered a national expert on the subjects of preparedness, disaster recovery and survival. He is a frequent contributor of articles about the many threats facing our society, appearing frequently on shows to discuss issues such as pandemics, ISIS, and the cyber threat and how we need to meet the new threat realities facing all of us.

Now living in a small community in Montana, he is a member of the editorial board of the Bozeman Daily Chronicle and also a member of the adjunct faculty at Montana State University where he teaches courses about leadership and strategy. For more about Richard, visit my About Richard page.

Also, note that his two books, Leaving The Trees and Good Crazy (Leaving The Trees Journey) (Volume 2), can be found on Amazon.  His next novel, Due Reckoning, will be out in the fall of 2016.

The Final Word

How do we go about connecting millennials with older preppers?  Indeed, that is the question.  We can do so within our family units but sometimes that will backfire.  Since the beginning of time, children have run in the opposite direction as their parents.  Just because.

On the other hand, rather than preach the prepping gospel, we can present them with problems and ask for a solution.  Be open minded and remember that millennials have not been spoiled (yet) by the inevitable failures that happen in life.  They are fresh and they see things in new ways.  They do care and they do want to make a difference.  Their solutions to our prepping dilemmas may surprise you I their awesomeness.

In closing, I just want to say this.  Regardless of your age and season of life, let us tip our hats to the next generation.  They need our support and not our disdain. They are the leaders of the tomorrow we are working so hard to preserve.

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
Gaye

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to email updates.  When you do, you will receive a free, downloadable copy of my e-Book, The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.

You can also vote for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!

Bargain Bin:  Below you will find links to some basic preps that I own and that I think you will find useful.

LifeStraw Personal Water FilterThe Amazon Top Ten Most Wanted Survival and Outdoor Items Backdoor Survival:  FREE SHIPPING! The LifeStraw is considered the most advanced, compact, ultra light personal water filter available. It contains no chemicals or iodinated resin, no batteries and no moving parts to break or wear out. It weighs only 2 oz.  making it perfect for the prepper. For more information, see my LifeStraw review.

Dorcy LED Wireless Motion Sensor Flood Lite: This light is awesome. I use mine downstairs as well as on my stairway and when I get up in the middle of the night, they come on automatically. They are quite unobtrusive and give off a ton of light.  Runs for a year on 3 D size batteries. As of this writing, about $18 with free Prime Shipping.

UltraFire Mini Cree LED Flashlight:  I personally keep flashlights in every single room of my house and you should too.  Consider ordering a dozen of these Mini-Crees.  For less than $45, you will have enough flashlights to stash everywhere including extras for nightstand drawers, desk drawers, and just about every place else you an think of.

At the time of this writing, these flashlights are $3.20 with free shipping. Or you can purchase 4 for $13.99.   These favorites are super mini sized, bright and waterproof.  Plus, they use a single, standard AA sized battery.

mini Cree_0         

10 Inch Premium Glow Sticks – Assorted: These glow sticks are fantastic!  Each stick glows for 8-12 hours, and comes with a pre-attached hook and lanyard.  They are well priced and hold up well when packed around in a pocket or handbag.  For more information about glow sticks and chemical lighting, read 10 Reasons to Add Glow Sticks to Your Survival Kit.

Paracord Planet Mil-Spec Commercial Grade 550lb Type III Nylon Paracord:  An ideal all-around utility cord in the field, paracord is tough and long lasting. It is made from 550-pound test nylon and features a seven-strand core for maximum strength. Also, it is manufactured in the United States.  Note that some colors may be more expensive than others.  Need ideas? See 44 Really Cool Uses of Paracord for Survival.

Emergency Mylar Thermal Blankets (Pack of 10): I do believe in helping my neighbors in the community so a supply of these will be handy to hand out to those in need. You will be surprised at how warm these will keep you. Be sure to test one out in advance so that you have the confidence to trust the blanket in an emergency. About $7 for 10.

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Shop the Emergency Essentials Daily & Monthly Sales for Fantastic Deals!

The monthly specials at Emergency Essentials feature discounts of up to 45% off sometimes a bit more.

Every family should have at least one Tote-able Toilet.  I have priced purchasing the bucket and toilet seat lid separately and found that it was more economical to pick up this kit.  I have filled my portable potty with sanitation supplies plus, of course, plenty of TP.

Emergency Essentials carries a wide variety of equipment and supplies – all at competitive prices.

~~~~~

Need something from Amazon (and who doesn’t)?

I earn a small commission from purchases made when you begin your Amazon shopping experience here. You still get great Amazon service and the price is the same, no matter what.

Amazon has a feature called Shop Amazon – Most Wished For Items. This is an easy tool for finding products that people are “wishing” for and in this way you know what the top products are.  All you need to do is select the category from the left hand side of the screen.

The Amazon Top Most Wished For Emergency and Survival Kit Items
Emergency Preparedness Items from Amazon.com
Bug Out Bag – Get Home Bag Supplies
Amazon Gift Cards

Help support Backdoor Survival. Purchases earn a small commission and for that I thank you!

~~~~~


Are You Interested in Essential Oils?

20 All Purpose Remedies Using Essential Oils

The post Tipping Our Hat to the Next Generation of Preppers by Gaye Levy first appeared on Backdoor Survival.

Survival Buzz: How to Move From the Mid-Way Point of Prepping

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How to Move from Midway Point of Prepping | Backdoor Survival

Are you at the point where you are comfortable with your prepping progress?  By that I mean you have done enough to know you can get by if you have to, and, for better or for worse,  wonder if you have done enough.

If this describes you, I can relate.

As promised, this week I am going to tackle another one the questions that were posed during the April Lifestraw Go giveaway.  Robin asked:

My question…. When you’re feeling like you’re mid-way (of your personal goals/expectations), how do you decide what comes next? You have food, you have water, you have a heating source, lighting, a couple methods to cook that food you’ve stored…., etc., You’re calmly, but not overly excitedly about “all” you’ve done….. but, what next? How do you move forward? Thank you!! So Much!

How to Move from Midway Point of Prepping | Backdoor Survival

This is a great questions on many fronts.  While it is easy to become obsessed with prepping, at some point you are going to ask yourself if it is all worth it.  After all, the major global economic collapse and disruptive event we have been prepping for has not happened.  It may never happen.

On the other hand, the more mundane, yet equally disruptive events such as floods, fires, winter storms, and power outages occur daily, just not to us.

So what happens next?  I will speak for myself with the hope that it inspires you to keep on prepper, albeit at a less frantic pace.

Three Items to Add to the Prepping Priority List

Learn new pioneer and country living skills.

While I live in a rural area, it is not on a farm and is not what you would traditionally call “the country”.  Still, part of my strategic SHTF plan has been to confiscate nearby land and set up a community garden.  I have the seeds, and the tools, as well as leadership skills to make it happen.  The nearby property is sunny and the land is fertile.  Growing food should not be a problem.

There are a myriad of other pioneer skills I want to perfect including soap making, smoking and other forms of food preservation, and campfire baking.  I am finding inspiration from Carla Emery’s Encyclopedia of Country Living.  Although I have had the Kindle version for quite some time, who browses their Kindle reference books on a daily basis?

I purchased the print version a few weeks ago and thumb through it often.

Additional Reading:  46 Pioneer Skills for the Modern Homesteader

Practice getting by with less.

We are a consuming society.  At each stage of our lives we acquire physical baggage that gets carried from one home to another.  Something I learned during my recent foray to Arizona that it is liberating to get by with less.  This was an important lesson that has led me to start purging unused items from my cupboards, drawers, and closets.  I can and will get by with less.  What is left over upon converting to a minimalist lifestyle will be those things I need to survive in comfort.

At the end of the day, isn’t that what we will want to do if the stuff hits the fan?

Live in the moment.

For my entire life, I have planned for some future point in time.  Whether it was reaching status within my career, becoming a stellar wife and companion, or living the proverbial life of riley as a retiree, I was always living for that magical spot sometime in the future.  A funny thing has happened along the way. Except for retirement, these goals and other were reached only to find that others replaced them.

This is not to say that it is folly to have hopes and dreams.  Rather, those hopes and dreams should not supplant living.

And thus it is with prepping.  If you have reached a point where you are comfortable with your progress, don’t brow beat yourself into thinking you need to continue with the same fervor as when you started.  Pick a more esoteric prepping task, stay in the game by keeping up with domestic and global events, and become nimble in your effort to learn new skills.

That is what I am doing and, because I am walking that walk, is the best I can do at this point in my preparedness journey.

I hope that in some small way, this helps those of you that are asking yourself the same question that Robin asks.  It should also address the question posed by Stacey:

Have you ever felt like your mind is on prepping too much? Like maybe it’s possible to miss the now?

Backdoor Survival Mail Bag & Reader Tips

Becoming proficient in the use of herbals and natural remedies is another one of those skills to pursue once you have reached a mid-way point with your food, water, shelter, and first-aid preps.

Janis offered the following tip:

Here is a first aid use for cayenne that few people know. I learned it from a friend whose parents immigrated from Hungary during the Cold War days.

If a person has a cut that will not top bleeding, take powdered cayenne and sprinkle some in the cut. As long as you aren’t putting any on a mucous membrane, it will not sting and it works great. I’ve used this method to make bleeding slow down enough so a person could get to the hospital and the ER doc was amazed at how well it worked.

Cayenne pepper is inexpensive and relatively easy to grown.  It makes a great pain reliever, too, when compounded as a salve.  If you want make your own, visit Make an Awesome Cayenne Salve for Pain Relief.

Essential Oils Deal of the Month – FREE Shipping!

For those of you interested in essential oils, I am thrilled to let you know that Spark Naturals is offering free shipping all month long when you use my code BACKDOORSURVIVAL at checkout.

If you have been hesitant to dip your toes into the essential oils water, now is the perfect time to pick up some Melaleuca (Tea Tree) or Lavender.  Both are quite inexpensive at $6.99 each plus you get an extra 10% off (as well as free shipping) with my code.

Need some inspiration?  I am currently using Melaleuca in a roller ball to remove an annoying skin tag.  It has been less than a week and it is half gone.

Additional Reading: The Miracle of Tea Tree Oil: 80 Amazing Uses for Survival

The Final Word

As you may have surmised, I am back home in Washington State.  It took a few days to become acclimated but the smell of the saltwater and the pine trees is simply fantastic and I am glad to be back on San Juan Island, tucked far away from big box stores and cactus!

A number of you had question relating to my move.  How did I adjust to the diametrically different environment and cultural challenges.  What about my preps?  Was I comfortable knowing that I had only the bare minimum of supplies?  What was the biggest adjustment?

These are great questions not only for someone moving from a temperate climate to the desert, but also for someone moving from the city to the country, or from on-grid to off-grid. As the dust settles back into a normal routine, I will get back to you with my thoughts.  Promise.

So what about you?  What did you do to prep this week?

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
Gaye

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to email updates.  When you do, you will receive a free, downloadable copy of my e-Book, The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.

You can also vote for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!

Spotlight:  Encyclopedia of Country Living: The Original Manual of Living Off the Land & Doing It Yourself

The bestselling resource for modern homesteading, growing and preserving foods, and raising chickens, The Encyclopedia of Country Living includes how to cultivate a garden, buy land, bake bread, raise farm animals, make sausage, can peaches, milk a goat, grow herbs, churn butter, build a chicken coop, catch a pig, cook on a wood stove, and much, much more. This comprehensive resource is the most authoritative guide available to a sustainable lifestyle and living off of the land.

Bargain Bin: A number of these items are mentioned by Backdoor Survival readers in the article 39 Fantastic Prepping Tips as well as some personal favorites.

Smart Soapmaking:  If you have any interest at all in making soap, this is the book you will want. Anne lives close by in Friday Harbor, WA and is a lovely friend as well as someone who really knows her stuff. Not only that, if you go to her website (there is a link in the book) and ask a question, she will respond personally via email. Only 99 cents. You just can’t lose.

One Second After:  For many, the novel “One Second After” was a game changer that convinced them of the need to be prepared.  If you have not read this book, you really should.  This is my #1 pick when it comes to survival fiction.

BaoFeng UV-5R  Dual-Band Ham Radio: The Baofeng UV-5R is a compact hand held transceiver providing 4 watts in the frequency range of 136-174 MHz and 400-480 MHz. It is a compact, economical HT that includes a special VHF receive band from 65 – 108 MHz which includes the regular FM broadcast band. Dual watch and dual reception is supported.  Here is the antenna I ordered along with the programming cable: NAGOYA Antenna for BAOFENG UV-5R and USB Programming Cable for Baofeng UV-5R UV-3R+.!

Emergency Mylar Thermal Blankets:  These come in compressed packets small enough to fit in a pocket or wallet.  You will be surprised at how warm these will keep you and they are dirt cheap at less than $5 for 10.

Windstorm Safety Whistle: I have many cheap whistles but for in my bug out bag, I stash the Windstorm whistle.  I have tested it and this particular whistle can be heard a long distance away and above howling wind and other competing sounds.

Swedish Firesteel:  Using this basic pocket fire-starter, you can get a nice fire going under almost any conditions. This is a small, compact version.

Pepper Spray:  It is always good to have some form of defense that will temporarily halt a bad guy that is in your face.

Kershaw OSO Sweet Knife:  This “oh so sweet” knife is solidly built, stainless steel knife that comes razor sharp right out of the package. It will pretty much cut through anything the price is amazing.

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   Shop the Emergency Essentials Daily & Monthly Sales for Fantastic Deals!

For over 25 years Emergency Essentials has been providing the highest quality preparedness products at great prices.  Plus, each month they feature sales that quite honestly are fantastic.

Live Well!Emergency Essentials carries a wide variety of equipment and supplies – all at competitive prices.


~~~~~

Need something from Amazon (and who doesn’t)?

I earn a small commission from purchases made when you begin your Amazon shopping experience here. You still get great Amazon service and the price is the same, no matter what.

Amazon has a feature called Shop Amazon – Most Wished For Items. This is an easy tool for finding products that people are “wishing” for and in this way you know what the top products are.  All you need to do is select the category from the left hand side of the screen.

The Amazon Top Most Wished For Emergency and Survival Kit Items
Emergency Preparedness Items from Amazon.com
Bug Out Bag – Get Home Bag Supplies
Amazon Gift Cards

Help support Backdoor Survival. Purchases earn a small commission and for that I thank you!

~~~~~


An Update on the Oil of the Month Club

There is some exciting news for essential oils enthusiasts.  Spark Naturals has introduced a Premium Oil of the Month Club that features the higher priced oils at the bargain price of $24.99 with free shipping.  To give you an example of the savings, the May oil is a 15ML bottle of Frankincense, normally $70.  That is a discount of almost 65%.

If you would like to learn more about the Oil of the Month Club, visit the page I created for you (shown below) or click on the graphic to head on over to the Spark Naturals web site.

Additional Reading:  Spark Naturals Oil of the Month Club

Spark Naturals Oil of the Month Club | Backdoor Survival

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The post Survival Buzz: How to Move From the Mid-Way Point of Prepping by Gaye Levy first appeared on Backdoor Survival.

Survival Buzz: Stepping Up to Failure by Having a Plan B

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Stepping Up to Failure by Having a Plan B | Backdoor Survival

Anyone who takes prepping seriously is bound to feel like a failure at one time or another.  Speaking from personal experience, I know that there have been many occasions where I simply can not get things right, regardless of the time and money I threw at it.

Being stubborn and bull-headed, I simply can not let it go. It seems the harder I try, and the longer I try, the more I fail.  Let me list some personal examples for you.

Stepping Up to Failure by Having a Plan B | Backdoor Survival

1.  I am unable to create a starter from the natural yeast in the air.  I have read lots of books and experimented with all sorts of things: apples, potatoes, raisins, you name it. I have even purchased starters and faithfully reconstituted them and kept them well fed.  Still they fail.  How will I be able to bake bread when there is no longer any yeast?  I suppose I should learn to make matzah instead.  Or perhaps hardtack.

2.  My immediate family does not prep.  Period.  Two spare five gallon bottles of water is their idea of prepping.  Enough said.  To them, I am sure I am considered more than a bit quirky.  Eccentric even.  You know the story about leading a horse to water?  If the SHTF, I know I will take my family in and am allowing for the extra burden on my food and water supply.

3.  I can sow seeds and grow a garden that is weed free, but I can’t harvest much more than a few salads from the bounty.  A small yard, lack of sunlight, and a short growing season stack the deck against me.  Still I try over and over again, spending countless dollars on grow lights, seed mats, and tools to push things along.  I have finally resolved to be happy in the knowledge that I know how to garden and have tons of heirloom seeds properly stored for the long term.  If the time comes where I need to feed myself from the land, I am hopeful that my willingness to work plus by tools and seeds will allow me to partake of someone else’s bounty.

4.  My composting skills suck.  There is no other way to describe it.  I have a nifty composter but two years later?  No compost, just a bin full of leaves and organic scraps.  Most likely this is due to #3 above but still, I feel like a composting failure.

Shall I go on?  I better stop before I get depressed. There is a lesson here.

Whereas each of these 4 skills are important; at some point you have have to step up to failure and come up with a plan B.  That is what I am doing and you should too.  You may still feel like a failure but that is okay.  At the end of the day, you will most likely prevail.

And for today, that is all I am going to say about that.

Backdoor Survival Mail Bag & Reader Tips

A few week ago Steve shared this tip in response to 100 Budget Friendly Items for the Frugal Prepper:

I love the items listed here!!!

I can add a few as well…for fire starters…pine cones.. there are plenty of these bad boys laying all over the place in my home town.. the ones already opened to be exact.. step on them to smash them up a bit and they make great tinder…pine needles…another great tinder that can be scooped up anywhere for absolutely nothing!!

As to cotton balls, I soak mine in Hydrogen peroxide to make a faster fire starter. Let them dry and they go up quick!

Deborah offered this tip and I thought I would pass it on for those of you that have issues with restless legs:

Put several bars of soap under the bottom sheet in the calf area. This has stopped my legs jumping.

After a year or so I removed the soap but the leg jumping has not returned.

This was recommended by a doctor, but he didn’t know why it worked, just that patients were getting relief.

For those of you looking for some natural relief from aches and pains, Bob shared his experience with the DIY salve I fondly call “The Birch”.

I found your site shortly after I was hurt a year ago. I broke my arm in three places between the shoulder and elbow. Two full length plates and three dozen screws later your Birch EO mix helped me with the pain without the prescription drugs.

I have been a reader and fan ever since.

How cool is that?  If you want to give “The Birch” a try, here is the article:  Birch Essential Oil for Arthritis, Muscle and Joint Pain.

Keep those comments and tips coming.  I really do read every single one.

Prepare Your Family for Survival: Tip #X

Here are this week’s prep tips from Linda Loosli’s recently published a book, Prepare Your Family For Survival.

Chapter 8 – The Power of Many

Tip: See if you can talk your neighbors into getting some walkie talkies. The perfect neighborhood solution when landlines and cell service fail.

Experts recommend Motorola Talkabout 2-Way Radios #MR35OR. If you purchase them as a group you will all have the same model and can set them to the same channel. Plus, you might get a discount.

For more about the book, visit the article 11 Ways to Prepare Your Family for Survival and read my interview with Linda here: Prepper Book Festival 11: Prepare Your Family For Survival.

Current Backdoor Survival Giveaways

Charge Your Devices With the Cheotech Portable Solar Panel | Backdoor Survival

Charge Your Devices With the Cheotech Portable Solar Panel + Giveaway

  Prepping for a Pandemic | Backdoor Survival

Prepper Book Festival 11: Prepping for a Pandemic + Giveaway

With all giveaways, winners are notified by email and have 48 hours to claim their prize or an alternate will be selected.  Once selected, the names of winners are also displayed in the Rafflecopter on the original giveaway article.  This usually happens on the Friday following the end of the giveaway. 

Starting Soon: 2016 Home Grown Food Summit – Online & Free

You are probably tired of me telling you about the 2016 Home Grown Food Summit, but it is such a fantastic opportunity to learn about backyard food production, homesteading, and off-grid living that I want to give you a final heads up.  It starts Monday, March 7th and is totally online.  You do not need to leave the comfort of your home to participate.

Remember where I told you about my fails at the beginning of today’s Buzz?  I am going to pick and chose the presentations I am interested in plus, as stubborn as I am, try to remedy some of my fails by learning some tricks from the experts.

For sure, however, my primary focus is going to be on learning more about herbal medicine.  Sound good?  You can still register using this link:  2016 Home Grown Food Summit March 7-13.


The Final Word

In closing, I thought I would circle around to the beginning and remind you that failure is a part of learning.  It is okay to try and try again, and if you continue to fail, come up with an alternate plan.  You can still continue to learn, but don’t beat yourself up too badly.  For every fail, there are undoubtedly nine or ten wins.

This week I am interested in learning about your own failures and how you dealt with them. Care to share in the comments below?

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
Gaye

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to email updates.  When you do, you will receive a free, downloadable copy of my e-Book, The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.

Emergency Food Buyers Guide 2016-02-26

You can also vote for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!

Bargain Bin: Here for your discernment are items related to today’s article plus a sampling of personal and reader favorites.

Motorola MR350R 35-Mile Range 22-Channel FRS/GMRS Two-Way Radio (Pair): These are the radios recommended by my friend Linda Loosli. Note, however, that there is no radio of this type that has a true, 35 mile range.  Think 3 or 4 miles, max.  On the positive side of the ledger, no license is required.  Uses standard AA batteries.

LifeStraw Personal Water FilterThe Amazon Top Ten Most Wanted Survival and Outdoor Items Backdoor Survival:  The LifeStraw is considered the most advanced, compact, ultra light personal water filter available. It contains no chemicals or iodinated resin, no batteries and no moving parts to break or wear out. It weighs only 2 oz.  making it perfect for the prepper. For more information, see my LifeStraw review.

Medicinal Seed Kit from Buy Emergency Foods: Not only does this kit include all of the medicinal herbs I recommend in the article 10 Useful Medicinal Plants To Cultivate From Seeds, but I value the research and testing that has gone into the drying of these seeds for long term storage purposes.

Maximal Power FC999 Universal Battery Charger: Much to my surprise, this was the top purchase by Backdoor Survival readers last month. This nicely built charger will charge charge AA, AAA, C, D, N, 9V, Ni-MH, Ni-CD, and Alkaline batteries. It has an LED display so that when you first put a battery in the charging bay, you know whether it is viable for charging or simply bad and ready to go back to the recycle box.

Maximal Power battery charger from Amazon

Yes it really works, even under solar power.  Read about in this article: How to Recharge Alkaline Batteries.

VICTORIO Four-Tray Kitchen Crop Sprouter:  Using a sprouter is the safest way to create  fresh, healthy organic sprouts at home in just 3-5 days. The unique growing tray design uses water surface tension to keep the correct amount of water in each tray for all stages of the growing process.

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Shop Buy Emergency Foods for the Best Quality and Value in Food Storage

Freeze Dried Food

Preferred by Backdoor Survival.  This is the Emergency Food I buy for m own use. It is non-GMO and MSG-free plus there are 100% Gluten-Free options.  Shipping is always free.  CLICK HERE TO ORDER.


Which are the best oils for your survival kit?  This article describes my top picks.

9 Best Essential Oils for Your Survival Kit | Backdoor Survival


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Need something from Amazon (and who doesn’t)?

I earn a small commission from purchases made when you begin your Amazon shopping experience here. You still get great Amazon service and the price is the same, no matter what.

Amazon has a feature called Shop Amazon – Most Wished For Items. This is an easy tool for finding products that people are ‘wishing” for and in this way you know what the top products are.  All you need to do is select the category from the left hand side of the screen.

The Amazon Top Most Wished For and Best Selling Outdoor Items
Emergency Preparedness Items from Amazon.com
Bug Out Bag – Get Home Bag Supplies
Amazon Gift Cards

Help support Backdoor Survival. Purchases earn a small commission and for that I thank you!

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Essential Oils: Deal of the Week

Each week I update a special page with the Spark Naturals item of the week?  You can find it here:  Essential Oils from Spark Naturals – Weekly Deals. Every once in awhile there will be free shipping or a free gift offered as well as a product discount.  And then sometimes, it is as simple as a huge discount.

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The post Survival Buzz: Stepping Up to Failure by Having a Plan B by Gaye Levy first appeared on Backdoor Survival.

10 Commandments of Survival You Need to Know About

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The 10 Commandments of Survival | Backdoor Survival

These days, it’s easy to go about our business of survival and preparedness without stopping to think about the rules of engagement. For most of us, these rules are not written or spoken, but are simply something that has evolved over a period of time.

As I have expressed many times in the past, the burden of knowledge, or perhaps I should say the burden of truth and knowledge, can be a huge weight to bear. That, coupled with the crazy busy task of life during these uncertain times, can be overwhelming. Getting up each day, going to work, doing chores, balancing the checkbook, taking care of family members – it’s all a big job.  Add prepping and learning new survival skills to the mix and you have a recipe for exhaustion – and perhaps even a bit of depression and gloom.

The 10 Commandments of Survival | Backdoor Survival

To help overcome my own dizzying sense of having too much to do and too much to prepare for, I sat down a couple of years ago and attempted to put my own rules for survival into words. I called these words the “10 commandments of survival”.  At the time, they brought focus and meaning to preparing for hard times.

Now, two years later, I find they still apply.  I am bringing them back newly updated as a reminder of why we prep as defined by the prepping rules of engagement.

10 Commandments for Survival

Commandment #1: Have the will to live, no matter what.

Having the will to live requires a strong sense of self-preservation and is something we must all work at on a daily basis. To fall into despondency will sabotage our efforts to prepare for that time when supplies are short, when chaos rules the streets or when economic collapse has bankrupted the world.

Now I am not saying that any or all of these things will happen. But on my own risk-meter, these things are right there at the top along with a regional natural disaster such as an earthquake.  The only question is when.

Commandment #2: Be self-sufficient and self-reliant, without wanting or needing excessive government assistance.

When chaos reigns the land or a natural disaster strikes, we need to do our darndest to take care of ourselves. We need to have our own food, our own source of clean, purified water, our own medical supplies, and most important, a robust skill set that will allow us to live quite comfortably without electricity or petroleum products.

There will still be a need for government assistance but that assistance should go to those that are truly needy through no fault of their own. That includes the wounded, the sick, the working poor, the elderly, children, and the disabled. This may be a pipe dream but in my sense of right and wrong, taking care of the truly needy is something that governments should do provided that these same people have gone as far as they can to take of themselves.

Commandment #3: Seek knowledge as a solution to problems.

There are so many free or almost free sources of information these days but the tough part is determining who is credible and who is not. Luckily, it is pretty easy to  vet the reliable members of the alternative press.  These reporters attempt to tell the news without fear-mongering and without getting you to spend money (unless you want to of course).

Even before seeking knowledge as a solution, some effort has to be put into both identifying and prioritizing of the problems at hand. Why not identity five or six problems and find good solid solutions to those before moving on to the next group?

While we still have a reliable power grid, download free e-books or visit survival and homesteading websites to pick up skills. Take advantage of the wealth of DIY information at your local library for free.  Learn do-it-yourself skills, then continue to practice and to drill and to learn some more.

Turn problems into solutions by using knowledge as your tool.

Commandment #4: Adapt to the surroundings, wherever they may be.

As comfortable as we may be in our homes, the time may come when you have to evacuate and leave. Your house may get destroyed in a natural disaster such as a hurricane, flood or earthquake. Or, due to the woes of the economy and unexpected unemployment, you may have to sell the four bedroom ranch house and move to a modest apartment.

The house in which you live is built of sticks and cement and bricks and mortar. Your home, on the other hand, is where ever you happen to live and if you are lucky, where you are surrounded by loved ones, even if they are the four legged type.

Learning to adapt to your surroundings – the people, the geography, and the social milieu – will allow you to embrace change as an adventure even when the causative circumstances may not be pleasant.  And that all translates into less stress.

Commandment #5: Embrace decisiveness as a core value.

Avoiding a decision when the choices are poor to begin with leads to complacency and even worse, doing nothing. On the other hand, making a decision and then pursuing that decision with decisiveness and gusto will likely lead to positive results. Sure, the result may not be perfect, but the willingness to make decisions, even in the face of uncertainty, means you are taking responsibility for your actions and for the outcome of your decision.

And right or wrong, you will learn from the experience. Doing nothing is simply not acceptable.

Commandment #6: Channel fear into positive actions.

Being fearful and running scared is what the PTB wants you to do. Fear translates into submission and submission results in being controlled. Add a bit of brainwashing and the result starts to sound like Hitler’s Germany.

A good way to avoid fear is to be prepared to fend for yourself in all types of situations.

Go back and analyze the most likely risks within your sphere of life and prepare for those first. Go back to commandment #3 and seek knowledge as a solution to problems. Take control of fear by channeling your energy into positive actions.

Commandment #7: Defend your right to freedom and the tenets of the US Constitution.

Embrace freedom and defend your right to liberty. What is liberty? How about:

  • The power to do as one pleases
  • Freedom from physical restraint
  • Freedom from arbitrary or despotic control
  • The positive enjoyment of various social, political, or economic rights and privileges
  • The power of choice

We currently live in a world of airport pat-downs, forced healthcare, mandatory vaccinations, and the unauthorized surveillance of our whereabouts and our communications. If many politicians have their way, soon we may lose our right to bear arms and defend ourselves.

Don’t give up your rights without a fight. And don’t be so afraid of the power elites that you fail to speak up to defend those rights. Some people will cower and hide. Instead, why not band together with like-minded people and make your voice heard. If we don’t do it, who will?

Commandment #8: Respect others and their right to privacy.

Notwithstanding #7, everyone has the right to their opinions and their right to privacy. There are some things that people simply do not want to talk about or share. Move on and respect their privacy. The time will come when you will want them to respect yours.

Commandment #9: Pursue love and laughter on a daily basis.

We all need a break because, truly, it is all too much these days. Call it down time, call it personal time. Whatever the name, love a little and laugh a little each and every day.

Love and laughter are a big part of living a strategic life. As difficult as it may be, especially during a crisis, take ten minutes or take an hour but do take some time each day to embrace survival in this most essential manner.

Commandment #10: Be authentic and real to yourself and to those around you.

One reason kids matter is that they are not spoiled by life. When they are very young, they only know truth. They don’t understand deceit and lies.

When things are not going well, it is easy to pretend and fantasize that things are different. There is nothing wrong with that as long that you know in your heart of hearts that reality is quite different. You cannot make reasonable, practical and viable decisions based upon myth. You need facts. To survive, you need to acknowledge these facts and accept the truth.

Truth will lead to trust, and trusting your decisions is paramount for others to trust you as well. To be real means to be true to yourself regardless what others think. And without being real, the other commandments just don’t matter.


The Final Word

These 10 commandments of survival were set down to help me cope with my own anxiety and sense of uncertainty about our future as citizens of the world. As a prepper, I know I cannot prepare for every single one of our global problems, nor can I prevent Mother Nature for doing what she is going to do.

At best, all I can do is to continue to learn to be self-reliant and independent so that I can keep my sanity and my ability to think rationally under stress.  Some days it is difficult.  On those days,  I will look at these 10 commandments and will continue think of ways that I can do more. At the end of the day, that is all I can do.

The world is still scary and I  still believe that the worst is yet to some.  Sadly it is not a matter of if, but a matter of when.

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
Gaye

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to email updates.  When you do, you will receive a free, downloadable copy of my e-Book, The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.

Backdoor Survival Emergency Food Buyers Guide

You can also vote for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!

Bargain Bin:  Preparing for hard times requires so much stuff.  Just where do you start?  How do you know whether what you have will do the job?  I always like to recommend that you start by taking inventory of what you already have on hand.  Check your closets and cupboards and don’t forget to dig out that old camping gear to see what might still be usable.

And then?  I would choose light, warmth, food, water purification, the means to cook food without power, and of course, something to keep yourself amused when traditional forms of entertainment were limited. My current top picks for each are shown below.

Mr. Heater Portable “Big Buddy” Heater:  Of course you are going to need a heat-source.  With the Mr. Buddy heater, you can use propane indoors safely.  It features an automatic low-oxygen shut-off system that automatically turns the unit off before carbon monoxide fumes reach dangerous levels in home.  To learn more about propane, read the series Propane for Preppers.

Buy Emergency FoodsLegacy Foods has an outstanding product that is also Non-GMO.  They have a line of gluten free products as well.  Their meal pouches are some of the best out there and on a price per calorie basis, quite reasonable.  This is the food storage I have chosen for myself.  Shipping is always free.

If you are new to freeze-dried foods, you might want to investigate their 16 serving Sample Pack.

LifeStraw Personal Water FilterThe Amazon Top Ten Most Wanted Survival and Outdoor Items Backdoor Survival:  The LifeStraw is considered the most advanced, compact, ultra light personal water filter available. It contains no chemicals or iodinated resin, no batteries and no moving parts to break or wear out. It weighs only 2 oz.  making it perfect for the prepper. For more information, see my LifeStraw review.

Sawyer Products Mini Water Filtration System: Fans of the Sawyer water filtration systems are evangelistic in their praise.  Did you know they only weight 2 ounces and fit in the palm of your hand?  At $16 give or take, the price is right.  Be sure to also check out the Family Color Coded Gift Pack which looks nice.

Volcano 3 Collapsible Cook Stove: The Volcano Collapsible cook stove is so versatile; it works with  charcoal, wood, or propane.  I like that it collapses down to 5” making it transportable.  I also have the older model, the Volcano 2.  Anytime I own two of something, you know it is a favorite.

Coloring Books for Grown-Ups:  This is the latest addition to my list of amusements and comfort items.  I hope you don’t think I am being silly because there really is something quite relaxing about coloring books. Don’t forget the crayons or Colored Pencils.

Note:  If you prefer to print your own, check out this $2.99 eBook that includes a link to a PDF version for printing on your home printer:  Adult Coloring Book: 40 Relaxing And Stress Relieving Patterns.

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Shop Buy Emergency Foods for the Best Quality and Value in Food Storage

For my personal food storage, I have recently purchased a large supply Legacy freeze-dried food from Buy Emergency Foods. I did so for these reasons:

    • I have confidence that their food products are sourced from the USA
    • They are 100% GMO free plus there are 100% Gluten-Free options
    • Pound per pound, and calorie per calorie, BEF delivers the best value out there
    • Every single order, regardless of size, is shipped free

Buy Emergency Foods Preferred by Backdoor Survival

Over the next couple of months, I will be sharing some taste tests so that you can see for yourself how Buy Emergency Foods stands out as one of the best values out there in food storage.

Sound interesting?  Check out their Sample Kits and Meal Buckets.  You will not be disappointed.

Shop Buy Emergency Foods for the Best Quality and Value in Food Storage

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Need something from Amazon (and who doesn’t)? I earn a small commission from purchases made when you begin your Amazon shopping experience here. You still get great Amazon service and the price is the same, no matter what.

Amazon has a feature called Shop Amazon – Most Wished For Items. This is an easy tool for finding products that people are ‘wishing” for and in this way you know what the top products are.  All you need to do is select the category from the left hand side of the screen.

The Amazon Top Most Wished For and Best Selling Outdoor Items
Emergency Preparedness Items from Amazon.com
Shop Amazon Tactical – Great Selection of Optics, Knives, Cases, Equipment
Amazon Gift Cards

Help support Backdoor Survival. Purchases earn a small commission and for that I thank you

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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Which are the best oils for your survival kit?  This article describes my top picks.

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The post 10 Commandments of Survival You Need to Know About by Gaye Levy first appeared on Backdoor Survival.

How Not to Be a Victim and Survive A Terrorist Attack

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How Not to Be a Victim and Survive A Terrorist Attack | Backdoor Survival

The world is abuzz with questions about the recent attack on the citizens of Paris.  How could this happen?  Why did this happen? And perhaps closer to home, could a similar horror happen to me?

I do not have any trite answers to ease your concern, shock, and panic over a seemingly random terrorist attack.  I can, however, share my own thoughts as well as those from some of the most trusted and credible people in my circle of colleagues.

How Not to Be a Victim and Survive A Terrorist Attack | Backdoor Survival

Bracing for the New Reality

The first to weigh in is Richard Broome who reached out Friday evening, before the full scope of the tragedy was widely known.  Here is what he had to say in a special message to the readers of Backdoor Survival.

The events in Paris Friday evening were a dark day in “The City of Light.” Terrorism became more real yesterday. In time, we will all look back at what we will ultimately realize was an epic event that should have sent us all a clear message. “I am coming to get you. This isn’t going away. It is coming to America too.” We have a rising tide of global jihadist aggression underway and I think most people are missing the religious fervor behind this movement and the terrorists’ willingness to do anything it takes to win.

Here is where strong leadership in this country is really going to matter. In a time of coming elections, we need leaders who do a better job of telling all Americans what we really stand for, the values and meaning of America, the special sauce that makes up our country, and the need for our national commitment to defeat ISIS.

Can we turn this around? Yes. We can.

We must.

Richard Earl Broome
Bozeman, Montana

For quite some time, Richard has been warning us that we at the brink of a tipping point.  I agree.  Re-read the article Stepping Up to Manage the New Reality and come to terms with the need to open up a dialogue with yourself and take your mental preparedness to the next step.

Survival is the Focus

On the heels of Richard came my friend Daisy Luther.  Friday night we had an extended chat about the Paris tragedy and how that event would impact us personally.  Of grave concern to both of us was the upcoming holidays and the travel plans already in place as families hit the highways and airways to visit loved ones.

With her permission, here is some of what she wrote on her website Sunday afternoon.

Massive disasters happen when people are going about their daily business. People go to concerts, fly to visit relatives, take vacations, run marathons, walk to work, take public transit, and shop at the mall. No matter who you are and where you live, if you aren’t an agoraphobic hermit, there are going to be times when you are part of a target-rich environment.

And if you find yourself in the midst of an attack, the motivation of the people attacking doesn’t matter at all. You are in just as much danger whether the perpetrator is a member of ISIS or a member of a secret government agency. A bomb is a bomb, an AK-47 is an AK-47, and a machete will lop off your head, regardless of the motivation of the person wielding it.

So stop with the accusations and focus on what is really important – your survival.

Think about what you would do in an event like the ones that have taken so many lives and harmed so many people. Thinking through events before they occur is what allows us to act quickly when they do happen. Believing in the possibility of bad things helps you to accept it and move to save yourself and your family, while others stand there in shock, making targets of themselves. It’s time to consider what you would do to survive a terrorist attack.

What would you do if you were swept up in a terror event?

The world has always been populated with those who seek power, attention, and control. Acts of terror are nearly always about one or all of those things. The perpetrators are predators, and the victims are the prey. If you are a target of the first wave of the attack, there may not be a lot you can do about it. If you’re hit in the back with gunfire, if you happen to be on a plane that is hijacked and crashes into a building, if you are going about your business and your location blows up, there isn’t a lot you can do.

But if you are fortunate enough not to be a victim of the first wave, then you can survive. And often, before the first wave occurs, there are minute details that can tell you something is wrong. One of my favorite movies is The Bourne Identity. If you haven’t seen it, despite Jason Bourne’s amnesia, he possesses skills that are ingrained into his psyche. As a former operative, he was trained to be highly observant and to make rapid assessments of what he has observed.

While most of us haven’t been trained as operatives, we can still maintain a high level of situational awareness merely by being observant. One way to develop your skills is to play something called Kim’s Game.  My friend Scott, at Graywolf Survival, used to use the game to train his soldiers in situational awareness.

He wrote:  Situational awareness is key to understanding your environment so you can know better both your circumstances and your options. There are myriad examples that could be given but would you notice the bulge (called printing) of someone’s ankle from a concealed weapon if you were asked to follow him to barter for goods? Would you remember enough details of the turn of a path you passed two hours ago to be able to find it again? If you were attacked, would you be able to give a good enough description of the subject and getaway vehicle to have him identified?

Kim’s Game comes from a novel by Rudyard Kipling and is something you can play with your family, any where, any time. Go HERE to learn more about how to play it.

A higher level of situational awareness can help you in many ways, should you be unfortunate enough to be present during an active of terror.

It can help by:

Allowing you to identify a threat before it becomes active

Allowing you to locate exits and routes to the exits

Allowing you to determine sources of cover

If you can identify a potential threat before it exists, you can sometimes prevent an attack or at the very least, you can protect yourself and your family more effectively. A book by Patrick Van Horne and Jason A. Riley describes this as being on the “left of bang”. The left of bang is a term used to describe the moments before something bad happens, when you have an inkling that something is wrong, but you just can’t put your finger on what it is.

The book, Left of Bang: How the Marine Corps’ Combat Hunter Program Can Save Your Life, discusses how establishing a baseline can help you to identify a threat. (I can’t recommend this book strongly enough.)

A baseline is a “normal” for your immediate environment. Once you have a baseline for behavior in a specific environment, then it’s easier to spot anomalies. According to Left of Bang, it’s the anomalies that should put you on high alert. “Anomalies are things that either do not happen and should, or that do happen and shouldn’t.”  Watch this video with Patrick Van Horne to learn more about positioning yourself to realize something is wrong before a disaster actually strikes.

You can read the rest of the article here:  How to Survival a Terrorist Attack.

Making Contingency Plans Has to Come First

In my own way, I have been attempting to steer you toward making contingency survival plans; plans that take into account local risks.  That said, planning is hard work.  Heaven knows it is much easier to take out a wallet or a credit card than develop a plan.  Of course, you already know that but knowing and doing are two separate matters.

Let this be a call to action.  We live where we live and most of us are going to stay put and hunker down in place.  Please everyone, take a look around you and evaluate the risks then takes steps to ensure you are not a victim.

How do you do that?  In John Forsythe’s book Fight, Flight, or Hide. The Guide to Surviving a Mass Shooting, the author talks about taking cover during an attack, even if that means taking flight or hiding.  As a matter of fact, he says taking flight (aka escaping or running away) may be the best option if you can do it.

If you can not run, at least take cover the best you can and don’t try to become a hero by putting yourself in the line of fire unless you are armed and ready to shoot.  Even then, think twice.

Coming to Terms With the Toughest Prepping Decision I Have Ever Made

It has always been my intent to evacuate my temporary location in the Central Arizona desert and head back home to Washington State at the first sign of trouble.  After all, that is where my preps are located along with a small, but mighty support group of like-minded friends.  There is abundant water and fertile soil.  My island home in Washington State is an idyllic survival platform.

What was I thinking?  To take to the road and hope to get home before the SHFT comes down in a major way is foolhardy.  A much safer, sane, and better option would be to take my chances where I know I have shelter.  I already have water and already have food storage.  Now I need to learn to forage in the desert, build up my sick room supplies, and create a defensible perimeter.  It is time to find a local range and purchase more ammo.

Coming to terms with staying put is the toughest prepping decision I have ever made.  It kept me awake most of Friday night but I know it is the right thing to do.


The Final Word

As I write this, France is bombing Syria.  This may only be the beginning.

I tell you this not to scare you but to motivate you to take action.  Examine your current preparedness plan. Most likely it covers natural disasters, pandemics, and an EMP or cyber-attack.  Does it also include surviving a terrorist attack?

As Richard says, they are coming for us.  Does it really matter who “they” are and “why” they are doing this?  I say don’t stew about it and forget about playing the blame-game.  Instead, avoid becoming a victim and learn to become a survivor.

Ask yourself these questions:

Do you live near a major population or tourist center?
Do you live in a location in close proximity to military or defense installations?
Is your home close to a nuclear plant or major power substation?

If so, then please heed to the need to be ready for a major tipping point occurring in your own back yard.  Starting now, be aware of your surroundings and observe everything.  Stay close to home if you can.

If something seems off, don’t dismiss it.  Learn to trust your instincts and escape or hide if you sense the bad guys are nearby.  Don’t worry about appearing foolish.  You are not being silly; you are being smart.

Prepare yourself mentally and be ready to act.  Worry about the blame game later because in the moment, it will not matter!  These are troubling and uncertain times.  Be safe, my friends.

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
Gaye

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to email updates.  When you do, you will receive a free, downloadable copy of my e-Book, The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.

Backdoor Survival Emergency Food Buyers Guide

You can also vote for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!

Bargain Bin:  Below you will find links to the items related to today’s article.

Fight, Flight, or Hide. The Guide to Surviving a Mass Shooting:  This is the book that taught be that hiding or running away does not mean you are a coward.  As a matter of fact, doing so can be an act of bravery.  The Kindle version is only $2.99.  Recommended!

Leaving The Trees and Good Crazy (Leaving The Trees Journey) (Volume 2): These two books of fiction, by Richard Broome, present a post apocalyptic survival story unlink any other.  The lessons I learned from Leaving The Trees can be found here: Leaving the Trees: More Lessons of Survival.

Lights Out: A Cyberattack, A Nation Unprepared, Surviving the Aftermath:  The hallmark book, by award winning journalist Ted Koppel, will hopefully educate the sheeple and motivate them to embrace the message of preparedness.  For the rest of us, there is much to learn about the state of preparedness, or lack thereof, at the highest levels of our government.  Read more:  Prepper Book Festival 10: Lights Out by Ted Koppel.

Sabre Family Home and Property Protection Pepper Spray:  Not everyone is comfortable with a firearm plus, getting started with guns and ammo is an expensive proposition. That, plus the training required means that you should have some other means of self-defense to get you by while you are learning about firearms.will set you back about $35. But even a hand held pepper spray such as the Sabre Compact Pepper Spray Survival Gear Checklist 15 Items to Get You Started Backdoor Survival will keep you protected. The cost for the compact spray is less than $8. Survival Gear Checklist 15 Items to Get You Started Backdoor Survival

LifeStraw Personal Water FilterThe Amazon Top Ten Most Wanted Survival and Outdoor Items Backdoor Survival:  The LifeStraw is considered the most advanced, compact, ultra light personal water filter available. It contains no chemicals or iodinated resin, no batteries and no moving parts to break or wear out. It weighs only 2 oz.  making it perfect for the prepper. For more information, see my LifeStraw review.

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Shop the Emergency Essentials Monthly Specials

For over 25 years Emergency Essentials has been providing the highest quality preparedness products at great prices.  Plus, each month they feature sales that quite honestly are fantastic.

This month is the annual “Harvest Sale” with exceptional values fruits, veggies,and gear that will help you get through winter power outages.

Since I just purchased some dairy products, I thought I would mention that Instant Nonfat Dry Fortified Milk is on sale for 27% off.  Milk is perfect for the prepper pantry because it delivers protein and is also good to use when preparing those oats that you store.  Another good choice is Yoders Canned Bacon at 17% off.  If you like bacon, you are going to love this!

Finally, prices on Mountain House products continue to be heavily discounted as are the Emergency Essentials brand of food storage items.

Shop the Emergency Essentials Monthly Specials

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Need something from Amazon (and who doesn’t)? I earn a small commission from purchases made when you begin your Amazon shopping experience here. You still get great Amazon service and the price is the same, no matter what.

Amazon has a feature called Shop Amazon – Most Wished For Items. This is an easy tool for finding products that people are ‘wishing” for and in this way you know what the top products are.  All you need to do is select the category from the left hand side of the screen.

The Amazon Top Most Wished For and Best Selling Outdoor Items
Emergency Preparedness Items from Amazon.com
Shop Amazon Tactical – Great Selection of Optics, Knives, Cases, Equipment
Amazon Gift Cards

Help support Backdoor Survival. Purchases earn a small commission and for that I thank you!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Are You Interested in Essential Oils?

20 All Purpose Remedies Using Essential Oils

The post How Not to Be a Victim and Survive A Terrorist Attack by Gaye Levy first appeared on Backdoor Survival.

The 10 Personality Traits of Successful Survivalists

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The 10 Personality Traits of Successful Survivalists | Backdoor Survival

Have you ever noticed that most preppers have a lot in common? There are certain personality traits that seem to be present in nearly every single prepper and survivalist I have met, and the more prevalent these traits, the more successful they are at prepping and survival.

We do a lot of talking about what preppers do wrong, and about those mistakes and oversights that can get you killed, but today I want to focus on the positive: those core traits that will see you through the ups and downs of life, whether it’s in the midst of a major disaster or a daily inconvenience.

The 10 Personality Traits of Successful Survivalists | Backdoor Survival

Today I’d like to share with you my take on ten things that preppers get right.  I list them in no particular order although I tend to think the first and last might be the most important.

10 Traits of the Successful Prepper

1.  The Will to Live

Preppers approach long term survival with gusto.  As busy as they might be with job and family obligations, they are laser-focused on ensuring that they will be safe for the long term.  They want to live and want to enjoy the bounty of life itself.  To that end, they are prepared to endure hardships and are prepared to defend what is theirs.  They want to live, no matter what, and want to be productive members of society.

2.  Thirst for Knowledge

There is always something new to learn and to keep the prepper’s brain engaged.  There is never a time when they say “enough”.  As difficult as it may be at times to deal with the reality of our world, preppers seek knowledge and truth. They relentlessly pursue just one more skill and one more fact that will help them prevail if their world goes to heck.

3.  Belief in Family Values

The family as a social unit is important, whether it is a family of two or a family of twenty.  Preppers know that and embrace and protect the family unit because it provides a sense of belonging, as well as an environment for honesty and respect.  However the family unit is defined (and each of us may define “family” in different terms), the core ideals remain the same: responsibility, accountability, and love.

4.  The MacGyver Instinct

Every prepper is a handyman.  We fix stuff.  We make things work by cobbling together odd bits and pieces into something newly purposed.  We throw away nothing, lest it have some useful purpose down the road.  We strive to jerry-rig our way out of just about anything, sometimes with only some paracord and duct tape.  The words “I can’t make it work” do not exist in the Prepper’s vocabulary.

5.  Compassion for Others

Wikipedia defines compassion as “the emotion that we feel in response to the suffering of others that motivates a desire to help”. The so-called survivalists of old were stereotyped as loners.  These days, most preppers understand the value of being around others and feel a strong emotional connection to helping those that are unable to help themselves.

This is not to say that we as a group are a bunch of bleeding hearts that will give away our hard-earned preps to anyone who comes asking.  Quite the contrary.  What it does mean is that we show compassion for those that are disabled, elderly, ill, or simply lack the financial means to do more than a modicum of preparations.  From these individuals we will seek knowledge and skills rather than physical possessions.

Of course, your compassion must be tempered with common sense. In an all-out disaster (and heck, sometimes it doesn’t even take a major event) some people will try to take advantage – brutal advantage – of your willingness to help. Use extreme caution when assisting others. Even people you feel you know can turn ugly in desperate circumstances.

6.  Physical and Mental Fitness

To stay on top of the game, we must be able to move around freely and in an unencumbered manner.  This means we must get regular exercise now so that we will be physically fit if we ever have to face an evacuation or a bug-out situation.  When performed  on a regular basis, functional fitness activities can help you survive when disaster strikes.

We must also stay nimble of mind so that rational decisions can be made quickly under the most adverse of circumstances. The ability to accept that something bad has happened and move forward to make speedy decisions requires practice and a specific mindset.

Most preppers know this and work toward a goal of physical and mental fitness each and every day of their lives.

7.  Critical Thinking

Critical thinking is the ability to think clearly and rationally. For some this comes naturally, but for most, this is an acquired skill that is honed by the thoughtful examination of risks and rewards before coming to a logical and decisive solution to a problem.  By considering various catastrophic scenarios in advance, preppers make plans for dealing with the risks most inherent to their geographical location and personal circumstances.

8.  The Ability to Drive a Hard Bargain

With very few exceptions, the preppers I know live within the confines of a budget.  In addition to funding their daily life and daily activities, they must fund the acquisition of supplies, outdoor gear, water storage facilities and extra food.  They do this by shopping for bargains, searching for used items at thrift stores and garage sales, and by trading those items they no longer need for items they do.

They practice the skill of bartering services for goods and goods for services.  By doing so, they are able to acquire what they need not only for now, but for long term survival.

9.  Understanding of the Value of Networking

Preppers understand that not everyone knows everything and not everyone has every single skill they will need to prevail.  For that reason, they surround themselves with other forward thinking and like minded individuals.  Some of these individuals may be local and others may only be accessible virtually over the internet.

Regardless of where they are located, the vast majority of preppers seek others in a respectful and open-minded manner.  They know that when the going gets tough, they will have someone to share with and together they will watch each other’s backs.

10.  Faith and Optimism

Faith and optimism go hand in hand.  Whether that faith is tied to organized religion or not, it is there none the less.  Coupled with the will to live, having faith is what keeps us going.  It allows us to put one foot in front of the other and to keep moving forward, one baby step at a time.  Some will pray while others will quietly reflect in their own manner.

Faith is important. Without it, you may falter.


The Final Word

It took me awhile to come up with this list.  I pondered the top traits of the preppers I know while taking a quiet hike along the trails near where I live.  I thought about the hundreds if not thousands of emails I have received these past few years and boiled down the experiences that have been shared with me into these ten things that preppers simply get right.

Chances are that you possess a majority of these traits of successful survivalists and prepper-types.  In fact, you may have these traits and, until now, did not even know it.  Today I would like to challenge you to look at this list and to evaluate your own top prepper traits.  Celebrate those that you have and cultivate those that may need work.  At the end of the day, if the world goes to heck, you will find that having these traits will allow you to prevail, if not in comfort, then at least in safety.

I invite you to share any traits I may have missed in the comments area below.  And blessings to all of you in your pursuit of preparedness.

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
Gaye

Note;  This article is an updated version of an article I wrote a couple of years ago, 10 Things That Preppers Get Right.  Becoming discouraged is so commonplace within the prepper community that I decided to add new material and post it again.  Let this be a reminder that we all have many wonderful traits in common.

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to email updates.  When you do, you will receive a free, downloadable copy of my e-Book, The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.

Backdoor Survival Emergency Food Buyers Guide

You can also vote for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!

Bargain Bin:  Here is a list of most of the items recommended by Backdoor Survival reader, Karen Skoog, in the article Best Practices: The Every Day Carry Bag (EDC).  A great article, in case you missed it.

Rothco MOLLE Compatible Water Bottle Pouch:  I never would have considered using a water pouch as an EDC bag.  This one is a MOLLE compatible pouch so it can be easily attached to the rest of your MOLLE gear.  It features MOLLE loops around the entire pouch, two 6 inch straps on the back, and D-rings on each side. The straw hole on the top and a drain hole makes hydration simple. A perfect companion to my favorite Rothco Medium Transport Pack.  I own three of these packs – two in black and one in tan.

5.11 MOLLE Padded Pouch: When I read about the “food pouch”, I had one of those “why didn’t I think of that moments”!

Nalgene Tritan Wide Mouth BPA-Free Water Bottle:  This is the bottle that Karen chose and it is one that I have recommended in the past.

GSI Outdoors Glacier Stainless Bottle Cup/Pot:  Nice and something that I am adding to my own shopping cart.  It is designed to slip over standard 1-litre water bottle and holds up to 18 ounces.

Military Army Trainmen Paisley Bandanas: Speaking of bandanas, be sure to check out the article How to Use a Bandana to Save the Day.

Katadyn Micropur MP1 Purification Tablets:  Ultralight tablets provide fresh drinking water anywhere you go. Effective against viruses, bacteria, giardia and cryptosporidium. Fresh tasting water-no unpleasant taste. These easy-to-use tablets meet EPA purification guidelines. Purification method: Chlorine Dioxide tablets. 1 tablet treats 1 qt. of water.

Cobra Products 4-Way Sillcock Key:  This 4-way sillcock key has a 1/4″ , 9/32″, 5/16″ and 11/32″ stem to service most sillcocks in common use. It is durable, easy to use and has an attractive finish. Used to open and close sillcocks or spigots and made of durable steel construction.

The Friendly Swede Magnesium Alloy Emergency Easy Grip Fire Starter (2 Pack):  Firestarters are an essential piece of any survival/outdoor kit – waterproof, durable and easy to use as follows:

1. Scrape off black protective coating from firestarter rod
2. Prepare your tinder
3. Hold the striker at a 45° angle to the firestarter. Scrape striker hard and fast down the firestarter
4. Allow sparks to fall onto tinder

Dorcy Waterproof LED Flashlight with Carabineer Clip:  This is a floating waterproof flashlight that provides 55-lumens of light output and a 31-meter beam distance. I am a big fan of Dorcy products so this one is definitely going in my shopping cart as well.  Not that I need more flashlights!  Wait – you can never have too many!!

MTECH USA MT-378 Tactical Folding Knife 4.5 Closed: This folding knife features a 3 inch black finished 440 stainless steel tanto style blade with a quick opening thumb stud. The comfortably contoured black steel handle features a brushed metal finish, a heavy duty pivot pin and the liner lock blade locking design. It has a closed length of 4 1/2 inches and comes with a durable pocket clip.

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Shop the Emergency Essentials Monthly Specials

For over 25 years Emergency Essentials has been providing the highest quality preparedness products at great prices.  Plus, each month they feature sales that quite honestly are fantastic.

This month is their annual “stock up” month with exceptional values on some of their most popular items.  As I do every month, I like to single out my own favorites.  This month, one of the best deals is on their 4 person 72 hour buckets which is based upon a total of 2,000 calories per day per person.  A 2-pack (2 full buckets) is 50% off at $99.99.  

My favorite Clear Mist 115 Hour Plus Emergency Candles are $4.95 and the Mobile Washer (Hand Operated Washing Machine) is on sale for $11.99.  Finally, prices on Mountain House products continue to be heavily discounted as are the Emergency Essentials brand of food storage items.

Shop the Emergency Essentials Monthly Specials

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Need something from Amazon (and who doesn’t)? I earn a small commission from purchases made when you begin your Amazon shopping experience here. You still get great Amazon service and the price is the same, no matter what.

Amazon has a feature called Shop Amazon – Most Wished For Items. This is an easy tool for finding products that people are ‘wishing” for and in this way you know what the top products are.  All you need to do is select the category from the left hand side of the screen.

The Amazon Top Most Wished For and Best Selling Outdoor Items
Emergency Preparedness Items from Amazon.com
Shop Amazon Tactical – Great Selection of Optics, Knives, Cases, Equipment
Amazon Gift Cards

Help support Backdoor Survival. Purchases earn a small commission and for that I thank you!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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20 All Purpose Remedies Using Essential Oils

The 10 Personality Traits of Successful Survivalists by Gaye Levy first appeared on Backdoor Survival.

Struggling With The Burden of Truth and Knowledge

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Struggling With the Burden of Truth & Knowledge | Backdoor Survival

The burden of truth and knowledge has always been a struggle for me personally.  Some days, this struggle is so powerful that my head hurts from sorting through fact and innuendo; so much so that I just want to shout “enough” and give up the effort to stay enlightened.

I first wrote about the burden of truth and knowledge back in September 2012.  Sadly, not a whole lot has changed since then.  If anything, this struggle has become worse as we deal with increased threats of cyber terrorism and worse.

Struggling With the Burden of Truth & Knowledge | Backdoor Survival

As with all things related to survival and preparedness, chances are if I am having feelings in this direction, many others are as well.  For that reason, today I am updating my original muse in an effort  to help others deal with this overwhelming and all-encompassing of burden of truth and knowledge.

The Exhausting Burden of of Truth

Without conscious effort, this burden can be both exhausting and debilitating.  One merely has to look around, read some news, or watch a little television to realize that there is major subterfuge going on.  Knowing that deceit and trickery are around every corner, we are forced to dig deeply to examine facts, evaluate actions, and derive truthful conclusions based on evidence and fact rather than spin, propaganda, and political innuendo.

Not only is that time-consuming to constantly seek the truth hidden in the web of lies, but that truth and knowledge can begin to eat at our very core, manifesting itself in the relentless and unstoppable pursuit of even more knowledge, more facts and sadly, more acceptance that our world as we have known it is doomed.

What Triggers the Search for the Truth?

Just what exactly is happening to cause this pursuit?  Let us start with just a few examples.

A worsening global economy fueled by excess government spending, undeserved entitlements, and a dearth of decent, well-paying jobs

The likelihood of massive food shortages within the next few years due to adverse weather patterns and droughts

The threat of  laboratory mutations causing a worldwide pandemic

Ongoing and insidious use of political and government power to reign in and control the masses

False and misleading statistics are taken out of context and being paraded as truths

Manipulation of our food supply via misguided bioengineering without due regard for our health

The expansion of the super rich, the elimination of the middle class, and the swelling of the working class

Enforced non-ratified taxes in the form of “Obamacare” (aka The Affordable Care Act) that will impoverish those who were just barely making ends meet, by requiring high payments, high penalties, and causing the inability to receive medical care without it

Propaganda and fear are used to influence where you live, what you purchase, and how you deal with healthcare

An increasingly militarized police force that often deals out the death penalty right on the streets without anything resembling a judge or jury

Personal freedoms and liberties are being sacrificed, in the United States, at least, by quiet little Executive Orders that carry a big punch

Need I go on?  I think not since the enlightened are already aware of the malfeasance that attempts to control and manipulate our lives.

Recently I posed this question on Facebook:

I have been musing with the Shelly, (aka the Survival Husband), on the burden of knowledge versus oblivion. Does anyone else feel it? The burden, that is.Wouldn’t life be easier if we simply ignored the truth?

The Ultimate Burden of Knowledge

I was overwhelmed with emails that related anecdotal stories of the personal strife created by this very same muse.  Family members accusing them of being crazy, friends and co-workers tagging them as nut jobs, and the despondency created when trying to awaken the blind to the truth about our world were a recurrent theme.

In a perfect world, I would like to think that we – as an educated and modern society – would face these burdens together.  But alas, our world is not perfect.  Not that it ever has been but now, with the proliferation of the electronic age, we are more aware of just how imperfect the world and society have become.  This same electronic age, and the internet specifically, has allowed the powers-that-be to create false flags and falsehoods with rapid deployment via recognized news channels. How can you really blame the uninformed for accepting such lies at face value?

Most people would prefer to accept the reality presented by “reality shows” like that one about the Kardashians than the reality that is smacking them in the face. Cognitive dissonance affects the overwhelming majority of the country, who would rather discuss which actress wore what shocking outfit to an award show, than the real problems that threaten us all.

Many of us find that our shoulders are not strong enough to carry this burden alone.  And yet we attempt to do so in the very best way we can.  We stock up on food, we learn survival and coping skills and we become accustomed to living with less not because we have to but because we may be forced to one month, one year, or even ten years from now.  It can be a lonely journey.

How lovely it would be get up each morning, put on a happy face and go about the day.  With a few extra dollars in our wallet, perhaps we would purchase some new shoes or go spend $100 on a night out on the town.  An emergency fund?  What is that?  Pay off credit card debt?  What for?  Just keep on smiling, keep on having a good time and assume that if something bad happens, the government or those crazy preppers will take care of us.

And so, if you are like me, you do your best to carry on in spite of it all.  Some days are better than others.

After work, if the sun is out and the chores are done, you might take a hike or hit the lake in your kayak.  On other days, things are not so pleasant.  Time is spent reading, writing, learning, sharing – doing whatever it takes to keep spirits alight and optimism – now cautious – alive.


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The Final Word

I share this short essay with you today as much as a catharsis for myself as a message to let you know that you are not alone as you internalize your knowledge and attempt to come to terms with its effect on your life, your loved ones, and your moral values.

We all need coping mechanisms and tools to deal with this very real human condition called survival.  As you pick your way among those tools, be secure in the knowledge that by learning and living to be self-sufficient and self-reliant, you are taking control of your life and living it in the very best way you can.

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
Gaye

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to email updates.  When you do, you will receive a free, downloadable copy of my e-Book, The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.

Backdoor Survival Emergency Food Buyers Guide

You can also vote for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!

Bargain Bin:  We have not heard much about Ebola or other pandemics lately but you can bet that the risk is still out there.  Here are some sick room supplies to have on hand as a preventative measure in the event things get serious.  Note that I am including a couple of amusements as well.  See the article: Seven Facts You Should Know About Ebola (or any other pandemic).

3M N95 Particulate & Respirator Mask: This is an inexpensive mask that can be used in a variety of emergency situations. They come in a box of 20 and are NIOSH-certified. The molded cone design is fluid and splash resistant and will greatly reduces your exposure to airborne particles.

Moldex 2730 N100 Respirator Mask:  Do not confuse P100 masks with the N100s.  N100 is what you want since the P100’s are used to filter particulate only and not gasses and vapors.  Note that if you are on the small side, you will need to order the smaller version which is the Moldex 2731.

Disposable Protective Coveralls: There are plenty to choose from.  I purchased these DuPont White Tyvek Disposable Coveralls With Hood in a medium and it fit me okay with a bit of excess room left over.  Shelly needs a large, definitely.

3M TEKK Protection Chemical Splash/Impact Goggle:  I read a ton of reviews before settling on these.  I was so impressed with both the fit and comfort that I ordered another pair to use as a spare.  These are great and the price is right.

Spark Naturals Essential Oils:  It is no secret that I prefer essential oils from Spark Naturals.  They are well priced and of the highest therapeutic quality.  You enjoy an additional 10% off all items, including sale items, when using code BACKDOORSURVIVAL at checkout.  In addition, SN announces a discounted “Item of the Week” every Monday, and yes, the extra 10% discount will apply.

Shield Protective Blend:  Here is a direct link to one my most diffused essential oils.  If you can only afford a few oils, I would suggest Shield, Lavender and Melaleuca (Tea Tree).

Bicycle Canasta Games Playing Cards:  This timeless classic will keep the entire family occupied when the power it out.  Playing cards or board games should be in everyone’s preparedness kit.

Ticket To Ride: This my favorite board game, bar none.  Family friendly, you will spend hours in front of the fireplace playing Ticket to Ride with your favorite people.  This is worth the splurge.

LifeStraw Personal Water FilterThe Amazon Top Ten Most Wanted Survival and Outdoor Items Backdoor Survival:  The LifeStraw is considered the most advanced, compact, ultra light personal water filter available. It contains no chemicals or iodinated resin, no batteries and no moving parts to break or wear out. It weighs only 2oz.  making it perfect for the prepper. For more information, see my LifeStraw review.

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Shop the Emergency Essentials Monthly Specials

For over 25 years Emergency Essentials has been providing the highest quality preparedness products at great prices.  Plus, each month they feature sales that quite honestly are fantastic.

This month is their annual “stock up” month with exceptional values on some of their most popular items.  As I do every month, I like to single out my own favorites.  This month, one of the best deals is on their 4 person 72 hour buckets which is based upon a total of 2,000 calories per day per person.  A 2-pack (2 full buckets) is 50% off at $99.99.  

My favorite Clear Mist 115 Hour Plus Emergency Candles are $4.95 and the Mobile Washer (Hand Operated Washing Machine) is on sale for $11.99.  Finally, prices on Mountain House products continue to be heavily discounted as are the Emergency Essentials brand of food storage items.

Shop the Emergency Essentials Monthly Specials

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Need something from Amazon (and who doesn’t)? I earn a small commission from purchases made when you begin your Amazon shopping experience here. You still get great Amazon service and the price is the same, no matter what.

Amazon has a feature called Shop Amazon – Most Wished For Items. This is an easy tool for finding products that people are ‘wishing” for and in this way you know what the top products are.  All you need to do is select the category from the left hand side of the screen.

The Amazon Top Most Wished For and Best Selling Outdoor Items
Emergency Preparedness Items from Amazon.com
Shop Amazon Tactical – Great Selection of Optics, Knives, Cases, Equipment
Amazon Gift Cards

Help support Backdoor Survival. Purchases earn a small commission and for that I thank you!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

SN Frankincense IOTW | Backdoor Survival

Struggling With The Burden of Truth and Knowledge by Gaye Levy first appeared on Backdoor Survival.