Friday, April 11, 2014

Everyday Survival Techniques

This post is meant to provide you with some ideas to aid you with survival in our current day conditions.  You say you are getting along just fine?  You say that 'survival' only applies to being stranded in the wilderness?  Let me point out some things for your consideration.

Wilderness survival is difficult, takes knowledge as well as practice.  Urban survival can be quite different and requires a different set of skills.  While you won't need to know which wild plants you can or can't eat there are skills that we should be learning and practicing now for when we unexpectedly find ourselves in a survival situation.  Watch Les Stroud for wilderness survival information.  :-)

Start by creating good habits of preparedness.  In order to survive an event that many others refer to as SHTF you need to be always prepared and prepared in all ways.  This takes daily effort and the prepared state of mind to recognize the signs.  You must have a general knowledge of what is going on around you in order to know what you should be preparing for.  I have seen that some people prepare for a specific event.  I am not preparing for any one single even but rather I am preparing for a wide range of possibilities.  If you live in a busy metropolitan or urban area you may want to have specific preparations oriented toward 'bugging-out' regardless of what the emergency is.  If you live in a rural area you may have more specific plans for preparing to survive nuclear fallout.  Most of us can't specifically prepare to survive every possible event all at once.  Thus, a good round knowledge of these survival techniques will serve you well.    My thoughts today revolve around the threat of economic collapse and following civil unrest.  I continually expand my preparations to accommodate more complex and varied scenarios as my level of awareness and ability to prepare increases.  

Get your food storage in place first.  Each time you go to the grocery store purchase a few additional supplies.  Ideally you should have at least 3 months worth of the food that you eat every day on your shelves that you rotate appropriately.  After you have accomplished this then concentrate on getting another 3 months worth of freeze dried and/or dehydrated food supplies but don't neglect keeping your 3 months of pantry food stocked up as they get used up.  With the additional 3 months of supplies you can also concentrate on purchasing the foods that you eat everyday like mac and cheese, fettuccine Alfredo, soups, vegetables and bread mixes.  You'll also need supplies like butter and honey powder, flour, milk, salt, cereals and other baking ingredients.  Don't forget your comfort foods.  For us this entails most anything sweet so we have included fruits, brownie mixes, fruit drinks, chocolate milk and the like.  From there I recommend increasing your food storage an minimum of 6 additional months worth of bulk grains and the supplies you need to prepare and season these foods.  For our home these supplies include 5 gallon pails of hard white and red wheat, quick oats, rice, milk, sugar, honey, and black and kidney beans.

Don't forget water storage.  Fill up your used two liter soda bottles with chlorinated tap water and store in a cool place out of sunlight.  Large water storage drums and tanks are available.  You should store at least two weeks of water for each member of your family.  A minimum of 1 gallon of water per person per day will do but preferably two gallons per person per day or more.  Refill these storage containers each year.   Prepare a plan on how you will obtain additional water during an emergency situation.  For me and my family we are able to hike for about an hour to a small spring up a small nearby canyon.  We also plan to travel by vehicle, as we are able, about two miles to a nearby river and use a gas powered water pump to fill a 250 gallon tank in an enclosed trailer.  Also make provisions for water purification and treatment.
There may be the need to protect your family and your supplies.  If you do not already own firearms then you should consider becoming educated about them and training to use them safely and effectively.  Store enough ammunition for an extended period of need and anticipation that it may become scarce.  Just like with your food storage plan on adding to these supplies regularly and as you are able.  Go to the range and practice at least monthly.

Stop using credit cards all together.  It had become a habit in our family to use our credit cards daily.  If and when something happens we may get stuck with these balances.

Pay off all your debts.  Debt is slavery.  For those of us who have debts the best case SHTF scenario would be a solar flare or EMP that would wipe out all electronics and thus theoretically all debts.  Don't count on getting out of debt that easy.  Those who would enslave us will continue to do so even if and when the economy and dollar crashes.  Be sure they don't have a hold on you.  

Don't keep your hard earned cash in the bank.  Only keep enough money in your bank account to cover the necessary bills, otherwise use cash for all of your purchases. You need to have a bank account for obvious reason but keeping cash in the bank earning a small percentage of interest in a savings account just doesn't make sense if you ask me.  Consider putting your savings into tangible assets like gold and silver.  I'm talking about 1 oz. .999(9) silver rounds and coins.  If you don't hold it you don't own it.  In most cases your money in the bank only exists digitally and is not backed up by actual cash in the vault of your local bank branch.  Buy a piece of land in the country and some equipment to farm it or other assets that can contribute to your self-sufficiency or help you to produce extra income.  Consider that hyperinflation is knocking at the door and that the prices that you see on most everything at the store are comparatively on sale right now.  

Grow a garden in your backyard.  Build a green house. Learn how to do it now not after you really need to.

Catch rainwater.  Use this to supplement your garden watering.  It is not illegal to catch rainwater where I live as long as my home system has less than 200 gallons of storage.  If it is more than 200 gallons then I simply need to register it with the state.

Store fuels.  Storing gasoline can be dangerous so use prudence and be careful.  Firewood, charcoal briquettes, propane canisters, lamp oil, kerosene, are much safer to store. You'll need various ways to cook your food in an emergency.

Store other daily supplies including: batteries and rechargeable batteries, medical supplies, detergents, cleaning supplies, etc.

Build your supply of tools and other essential items.  High quality flashlights, hand tools, spare eyeglasses, and other equipment can make life much easier.  You must have it before you need it, especially if your survival depends upon it.

Expand your knowledge and skills.  Become especially good at something that you can use to help others or barter with.  Learn how to sew and own a good quality sewing machine and supplies.  Learn how to bottle and can foods, own canning equipment and supplies.  Learn how to reload and have the necessary tools and supplies.  Learn where to collect lead from, how to cast your own bullets and have all the right tools.  These are just a few examples.

Secure your home and keep it maintained.  Don't let an emergency come upon you as a thief in the night. Use heavy duty specialty locks and keep your doors locked at all times. Use security films on your windows and glass doors (or get rid of your glass doors altogether). Keep locking window well covers on your basement windows.  If you need a new roof on your home don't delay.  You may not have the chance to replace it later.

Stay healthy and fit.  Life during an emergency will be both stressful and physically demanding, probably more so than even your worst normal day.  Incorporate aerobic exercise with strength building workouts to reduce the possibility of being hurt, to maintain your good health which will allow you to be of service to others.  

Buy rural property.  If you can, move away from the big city and urban areas to increase your ability to be self sufficient.  If you can't, or don't want to move, buy some recreation property in a place you love where you can 'bug-out' to in case of an emergency.  Dig a well, plant some fruit trees, a garden and improve your property.  Buy an old trailer and put it up on blocks as a low budget shelter home.  Shipping containers make for great shelters and storage too.

Always carry what you need.  If you don't already, consider getting your concealed firearm permit, train and carry everyday.  Carry a knife, flashlight and spare magazine with you.  Prepare a 'get-home' bag with items you may need in case of an emergency that will help get you back home to your family and preparations.  A cell phone (hardly worth mentioning as even my 13 year old always has her cell phone) and other methods of communication such as a HAM radio are an important part of your survival kit.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Essential Oils

Yes, this is a shameless plug for doTERRA oils but it is a well deserved and necessary plug.  Essential oils SHOULD be part of your preparedness plans.  Needless to say, staying healthy is very important, especially in an emergency situation.  Natural remedies have their place and should be used, in my opinion, as your first choice to treat a condition or injury.

Oils have a very long shelf life which means that you can stock up on the ones that you use most.  doTERRA oils are known to be expensive but they are the most pure and refined and are the most effective available.  When it comes to our health we won't use anything but the best.

My family and I have integrated the use of essential oils into our everyday lives.  It wasn't something that we just jumped immediately into but rather as a need arose we tried the recommended oils and found that they did make a difference for us.  We have become believers.  Not every oil we tried worked immediately for each recommended use for us but as we tried them we found which ones we liked best.  You will always find our home with an assortment of the oils that we find the most valuable for our families needs.

Some of the oils that we regularly use include the following:

Deep blue: For sore muscles, neck and back pains.
Peppermint: for headaches and aromatherapy
Lemon: for swelling and can be taken internally, as an antiseptic, anti-viral, astringent, and much more.
Melaleuca: Cure all... use for many different things including anti-fungal and anti-inflamatory.
Lavender: As an antimicrobial/infections/imflamatory, and has a long list of uses.
Terra-Shield: As a bug repellent, this stuff is amazing.
Helichrysum:  This work amazingly well on healing cuts as well as skin disorders.
Purify: We use this in a diffuser/vaporizer along with 'OnGuard' in our home to protect from airborne illness.  
There are many other oils and oil blends with uses for pretty much anything under the sun.    For more information you can find it here.

Let me know if you have any questions about oils and their uses. In addition to the benefits of their oils doTERRA is an excellent way to make additional income.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Be at a constant state of readiness.

The time has come, or rather, the time has long since come to be ready for whatever may come our way.   Being at a constant state of readiness and being in a constant state of readiness are two different things.  Knowing that there is a need to always be prepared for any given situation, as GI Joe says, "is half the battle."  Since you are reading my thoughts on this subject you are half way there, kind of.  Hopefully you are also researching the other local and world wide conditions that could effect your need to be at and in a state of readiness. Being in the right state of mind is knowledge which is power.  Having the supplies you need and having the right knowledge is being at a state of readiness.

Brothers and Sisters, Ladies and Gentlemen; it is time to be at a constant state of readiness.  World, government and environmental conditions dictate that this should be so.  For you to count on anyone other than yourself for your own preparations would be unwise.  2014 is a year in which anything can happen.

Make ready, hope for the best but prepare for the worst.  Your preparations can only do you good.  Spend your money wisely on items that both help you to prepare and contribute to your self-sufficiency including everyday items as well as long term food storage.  Make sure you have the tools, supplies and skills that will allow you to take care of your own needs as well as help others.

Make your home a secure place by reinforcing the doors and windows.  You can visit my post to learn about what I have done to my home.

Wherever you go take a get-home-bag with you in case you become stranded and have to make alternative plans to get back to your home.  Include items appropriate for the season and geography.

Plant a garden and practice growing your favorite foods.  Learn how to preserve and bottle/can what you don't immediately use.

Store various different types of fuels for cooking and heating such as wood, propane, charcoal and kerosene.

Electrical power is a very nice luxury when you don't have it for an extended period of time.  Store the batteries you need and buy or build a renewable power source of your own.  A renewable solar, wind and battery power system for your home

Keep some cash on hand and not just in the bank.  The reliability and security of our power grid is a concern.  This includes the small possibility of a solar flare that could wipe out our electronics which necessitates having some cash in your pocket.  I personally recommend having real money on hand in addition to a few dollars.  Silver and gold have proven themselves a safe place to secure your wealth and would be essential in a collapse.  My personal choice is silver coins and silver rounds.  They are easier to own for most of us and would be a much easier medium to barter with if it came down to that.  Most economists that I follow say that silver has bottomed out and can only go up from here.

Don't waste your time and money on things that don't help you to become more prepared.  Do whatever you can, sell whatever you don't 'need' and get your food and water storage first. Do it as soon as you possibly can.  Do not procrastinate any longer.

Buy a shotgun.  No, don't get a double barrel shotgun and definitely don't fire off two blasts to scare off intruders.  Buy a 12 gauge pump shotgun and a case of 00 (double ought) buck shot to defend your home.  This is the most economical and effective way to defend your property.  You can read more about my firearms recommendations here: , , , .  Get some training and learn how to use it safely.

Watch alternative media sources to keep an eye on current events around the world and see what it being said in addition to what the main stream media is reporting.  

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Is there still time left to prepare?

As a follow up to my post "There is still time." I wanted to share with you some of my most recent thoughts.

I still believe that there is time to prepare, however, it is painfully apparent to me that this time to prepare is waning.  There will soon come a time when it will be no longer possible for the majority of us to become prepared.  

The elements of disaster, of whatever crisis may come upon us, seem to me, to be coming together even more quickly and radically.  I have always pictured and compared these upcoming events to an avalanche or to the snowball effect.  Although terminal velocity of an object falling from the sky is somewhere around 160 mph, depending upon its wind resistance, an avalanche can move much faster than this because of all of the different forces being exerted by both downward and outward motion.  I believe that this is also true in these last days.  There are so many possibilities for distress, and forces that we can not control or even foresee, that we are currently exposed to because of our dependence on the world that we have built around us that we need to adequately prepare for.  It is becoming more and more difficult, and urgently necessary to prepare if we wish for our families to endure well these inevitable stressful times.  When a snowball starts to roll it moves downhill rather slowly and is seemingly nonthreatening.  As it moves downhill with unstoppable force gathering speed and building mass the momentum and size increases exponentially until it is larger and moving faster than we expect or can expect ourselves to realistically comprehend.  I believe that this is how the ever growing list of dangers will befall us.  The snowball started rolling long ago, has been building momentum and size and will soon, I believe, be moving so quickly and get overwhelmingly large more and more rapidly that it will take even us preppers by surprise.

If you don't understand what this avalanche of dangers is comprised of please take the time to learn more about these imminent dangers that may be part of our future which you should already be preparing for:

Collapse of the US dollar 
WW III starting with Syria, Iran; Middle East...
False flag events
Trampling of the US Constitution - loss of basic American freedoms.
Fukushima radiation.
Martial Law
Power grid vulnerability

The effects on our families of the events on this short list will be more than profound.  Although there are MANY more things that we need to be aware of I believe that if we are wise to these situations we can then adequately prepare.  I was once 'in the dark' about current events and trusted that what I saw on the mainstream media news channels was truth.  That's no so much the case anymore.  I advise that you look to the alternative media sources for more information.  

Friday, October 18, 2013

A Prepper is...

I assume that many of us Preppers grew up as Boy Scouts.  Maybe that assumption is not true for many of you but for me and many other preppers it is.  If you were not a Boy Scout then you likely spent time in the mountains with a parent or other influential person and have grown to appreciate nature and the outdoors.  Growing up in with these influences and spending time in the wild naturally engenders certain traits, skills and qualities in a person.

The oath, motto and law of the BS of A express these qualities quite well.  These proclamations are an appropriate way to describe what I believe to be true qualities of a prepper. 

The Scout Law: A scout is Trustworthy, Loyal, Helpful, Friendly, Courteous, Kind, Obedient, Cheerful, Thrifty, Brave, Clean and Reverent.

After many years these phrases are still engrained in my mind. They continue to influence most of my daily choices.  I believe the reason they make such an impact on me is because these are not just simple traits instilled by the Boy Scout program, but they are truths, plain and desirable qualities in any youth or adult.  They are also easily applied to those who consider themselves to be preppers as well.      

A prepper is Trustworthy.  When it comes to keeping the confidence of a friend no one does it better than a prepper.  We understand this better than most, I suspect.  We need and even require confidence in and from others.  The significance of having a unique bond with another that is created through trust is indispensable, especially in a survival situation. 

A prepper is Loyal.  Actually, this is an understatement; fiercely loyal would be more accurate.  Loyalty to family, friends, and other important people in our lives is the primary motivation and reasons why we do what we do.  We feel an intense responsibility to keep them safe and to provide for their needs, even more so than for our own.  We neglect our own needs until only after those we love are taken care of first.  We follow our intuition and instinct then do our best to share that knowledge appropriately.    
A prepper is Helpful.  If someone is in need of a helping hand, whether in our own neighborhoods or on the side of the road, I would confidently bet that the first one to respond is a prepper.  We have learned though our own personal experience that providing help to others is both gratifying and meaningful.       

A prepper is Friendly.  We are a friendly bunch, really, I promise.   It can be somewhat difficult to spread the word of preparedness without this trait.  Many of us keep to ourselves but that does not mean we don’t fit into this category.  Our desire to be helpful is our cause to reach out and be friendly, but you do still have to earn our trust and loyalty.  Many of us may appear to be rough around the edges but in many cases appearances are deceiving.  A prepper would be willing to give you the shirt off their back, because they have a dozen others to replace it with.      
A prepper is Courteous.  The abovementioned traits naturally and almost always automatically cause each of us preppers to be constantly looking out for others.   Other similar words that describe preppers are; polite, well-mannered, considerate, civil and even gracious. 
A prepper is Kind.  Kindness is a quality of those who are courteous and shows genuine caring for another.  Preppers are never short on compassion for those who desire and are working toward becoming prepared.  We are sympathetic to those who are not prepared and desire for them to understand and prepare.

A prepper is Obedient.  Although some of the laws of the land may contradict ones beliefs about the natural laws of God a prepper is obedient in spite of them.  A prepper is even more specifically obedient to the laws of God and realizes that our country was founded by inspired men of God to accomplish his purposes of making men free to choose for themselves.   

A prepper is Cheerful.  “If ye are prepared ye shall not fear”.  Being cheerful takes a conscious effort.  Taking away the fear of uncertainty by being prepared allows us to be happy even in uncertain times.

A prepper is Thrifty.  You’re darn right we’re thrifty!  Prepping is not easy and it’s not cheap.  We have to stretch our budgets paper thin to be able to reach our goals of being prepared.   We buy quality because we need it to last.  We buy US made products because we love our country and want to support our own economy and people.  We take care of what we have because we realize how valuable our time and efforts are.   

A prepper is Brave.  Preppers have the spirit of courage.  We are bold and have the desire to do what is right.  These qualities will allow us to do extraordinary things that may seem dangerous or frightening to others.  The character of a prepper is one that shows strength and calmness when things get tough.

A prepper is Clean.  This meaning of clean applies to spirit, mind, and body.  The thoughts of a prepper are oriented toward others which help to keep their minds on the task at hand.  A prepper understands the importance of sanitation in order to stay healthy.  If you’re not healthy you will be the one in need of help, instead of being the one who is providing help.  Our belief in God is the reason we prep; because we understand the signs of the times and we believe what the scriptures say.  All of these aspects of being clean are a very important part of prepping.  Being spiritually prepared is just as important as making preparations for your temporal needs.  
A prepper is Reverent.  We are respectful to God, nature and our fellow men and acknowledge that only by giving respect do we gain respect.

The Scout Oath: On my honor, I will do my best To do my duty to God and my country and to obey the Scout Law; To help other people at all times; To keep myself physically strong, mentally awake, and morally straight.

I wouldn’t be able, and thus have not attempted, to reword this oath any better than it is already.  I feel that this still applies to me just as much as a prepper as it did when I was a scout. 

What is our duty to God and country?  That is best left for you to determine and personalize for yourself.  I’m not gonna tell you what your duty it.  I hope that since you are preparing you already have a clear picture of what your duty is and are continually working over it in your mind.  However, to help other people at all times needs no interpretation.  If your neighbors whom you love and respect come asking for your help in their time of need would you turn them away?  My response is resounding: Of course not.      

The Scout Motto: Be Prepared. 

I guess I really took this one to heart.  It has been my lifestyle ever since I realized what it meant to be prepared when I was young.  Over the years I have had my share of experiences that stressed the meaning and the need. 

The Scout Slogan: Do a Good Turn Daily!
Do something deliberate every day to help better prepare your family. 

Hopefully I have reminded you of a few things that will help guide you in your preparations. 

Monday, September 30, 2013

Build your own power station - Part Two

In one of my previous posts on how to build your own power station ( ) I showed you how to build a very basic small portable rechargeable system that will run small devices and appliances.  This system is much larger, robust and versatile and is also meant to be portable.  I built this for a small cabin that is occasionally threatened by and was once destroyed by wildfire thus portability was important.  It is re-chargeable/renewable via solar panels, wind turbine, water turbine, gas generator and grid power.  This would be a great system to build for your home as a back-up power source for larger appliances, lighting, etc. that is not built-in to your home.  A reason that you may not want to add a solar back-up power system to your home is that it would then not be portable.  This system will allow for you to take it with you to a bug-out location.

This Portable Renewable Power System (PRPS) was built inside a standard job site box which can be locked and secured.  It is weather tight and can be operated outdoors or indoors with some ventilation.   Different sizes of these boxes are available.  You could also use most any type of box or enclosure as long as it will accommodate the components you desire.  I like using these job boxes for this purpose as they are virtually indestructible and can easily be secured to a tree, vehicle or other secure object with a large chain.

Standard residential solar components were used which make this system expandable, upgrade-able and easily repaired as needed.  In this picture you see the inverter/charger, solar charge controller, battery disconnect and GFCI breaker. 

This is the solar combiner box which contains a disconnect, fuses and lightning arrestor and employs an extension cord of the proper wire size for connection from the solar array to an inlet on the power system box to help keep the system as portable as possible.

This is a 24 volt system but your system could be configured in 12v or 48 volts also.  These batteries are deep cycle, solar/renewable specific 6v batteries that should easily have a 20 year or longer life if maintained properly.  The other components in this type of system are designed and expected to have up to a 30 year or longer life span.  You could also use sealed batteries if your unit will be used indoors as the escaping gasses from the unsealed batteries can be dangerous.  Working with any battery of this type can be quite dangerous so before you handle them be sure you know what you are doing.

Outlets were installed on the outside of the box for easy access and weather tight use while the box is closed.

A battery meter was installed inside the box to monitor the battery status and provide other valuable information.  

If you would like more information on how to build this system please feel free to send me a message and I can help you out.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

There's still time

I have seen numerous posts and YouTube videos and have spoken with individuals who believe that either "There isn't much time left." or "We are out of time!".  Some of the more, what I consider, radical conspiracy theorists believe that by October 2013 it's all over.  This is in reference to being prepared before the SHTF.  Your interpretation of what SHTF means may be different than mine.  The dollar collapsing, WWIII, terrorists attacks, pandemics, EMP , nuclear war and an array of other possibilities are all on my list as I am sure, since you are reading this post, they are on yours.  So many things to prepare for and so little time.  It is true that the world we have created is extremely vulnerable.  Most if not all of the elements are already in place for 'the end' to come.  

Like many people I believe that these events could and someday will come to pass.  If you are a Christian then you believe what is written in the Bible as well as what has been said or prophesied by religious leaders throughout history that pertain to the second coming.  I believe that we do live in the 'last days' of the earth and that Jesus Christ will come again very soon.  I look forward to that event with great anticipation and I am determined to survive the coming difficulties so that I and my family can be a part of that great event.  

That being said I personally believe that we still have some time left to prepare.  Don't use this statement as an excuse to procrastinate any longer because there will soon come a time when it will no longer be possible to prepare.  My advice to you is to use every day to do something that will better prepare your family.  There are many skeptics out there that are in denial and believe that nothing bad could ever happen to us.  The history of the world proves otherwise.  Some of these 'unbelievers' are in my own family and I struggle to know how to best communicate this urgency with them.  Even thought I believe that we still have some time left there should still be an urgency in your preparations.  Every hour of every day is precious to me, that is why I am taking the time to let you know how I feel.

Despite of what is happening right now to us politically we still, and always will, live in a blessed land.  The blessings associated with living in this land, that was established by men of God, (I am talking about our founding fathers) extend only to those who are 'righteous', living the laws of God and not just the laws of the land.  There is no better place to live if you do what is right before God and there is no worse place to be if you do not.

First things first; get your food and water storage in order.  You should have a 3 months supply of food on your pantry shelves that you rotate and use daily.  You should have at least two weeks worth of water in storage which you change out annually.  In addition to this water storage you should have a plan on how to obtain and purify or filter water for an extended period of time.  After you have these basics you need to look toward longer term food storage.  This food storage should include both the dehydrated and/or freeze dried meals as something that can be easily and quickly prepared and should also include the basic needs to sustain life such as wheat, rice, oats and legumes in bulk containers including 5 gallon pails and #10 cans.  Aim for a one years supply for every member of your family.  In addition to food storage you should also have a good supply of the items that you use daily especially relating to sanitation and health.  Think of the items you use daily and then buy a few extra of them each time you go to the store.

While you are working on your food storage you should also consider many of the other topics that I have already posted, and will continue to post, to this blog; all of which are not only related to daily preparedness but also apply perfectly to emergency preparedness.

There is still time.  How much time I don't believe that anyone knows exactly.  Anyone that throws a date out there or refers to any time period is only speculating.  Keep your eyes open and your ears to the ground and do something everyday that will help you become more prepared even if that something is getting yourself more educated and more aware.        

The purpose of this site is to provide you with information about what I have learned, my experience, and what my motivations are as a prepared guy. I have always felt driven to be ready for any situation by something powerful deep inside me. Being prepared has always served me well. I feel compelled to help others do the same.
Twitter Delicious Facebook Digg Stumbleupon Favorites More