Welcome to our new Magazine format! All new content will now be brought to you in this easy, new format. All our older content can still be found by scrolling below. Simply click the ">" to start the magazine and navigate via your arrow keys.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Back to Basics

Being prepared isn't "rocket science"! It's just plain old common sense and a lot of hard work. Times are tough for a great many people and they probably aren't going to get a lot better for a pretty good while. You are going to need basic items to get you through these tough times and waiting for the balloon to pop may be too little, too late if you aren't prepared. It is time to get back to basics!

Man is too fragile a creature and needs help to prevent things from overwhelming his life. We all need shelter of some form to protect us. We need food and water. We need basic protection for our bodies from the various effects of nature and the weather and a proper amount of security to protect us from outside threats to our lives.

Stock up on some food while you can and as much as you are able. You probably need to get a few chickens for protein from eggs and meat. Build a small chicken tractor, i.e. a movable chicken coop, to keep them in or a more permananent enclosure if possible. Get some seeds and get that garden planted.

Get some barrels to use for rain water catchment. Make sure you've got plenty of items to filter and purify your water. You won't survive long without water. Store some extra water if possible.

Make sure you have your home in good shape and have an alternate place to go if possible because it may become necessary. Make sure you have some form of security in place. A couple of good dogs and a firearm for defensive purposes can come in real handy. A good set of door locks won't hurt either.

Make sure you got your basic requirements for first aid covered and are keeping yourself in good physical condition.

Make sure you've got your basic transportation in good shape so that it is dependable and will be ready if you need it. You can't travel very far without it.

Make sure you have some emergency cash on hand to help you get through tough times or in an emergency.

We all need the basics of shelter, food and water, health care, security, transportation and a means (cash) to secure whatever may be needed if our preparations fall short. Don't get distracted by media hype and the "smoke and mirrors" magic show that is going on right now. Don't rely on your elected representatives to help you. Their main interest seems to be their own self-interest and not yours.

You need to get back to basics in your preparedness and not let the distractions of stories in the media to get you off track. You don't really need them to tell you how things are going. Just ask your friends and neighbors or take a good look around you and you will see it.

There is an old saying "Actions speak louder than words." Time for a little less talk and good deal more action. It's time to get your preppin' in gear.

Staying above the water line!


Original: http://stealthsurvival.blogspot.com/2009/03/back-to-basics.html


You may post this - just include my name and the link to my blog:

I already have contingency plans and action shopping lists prepared) in advance. This will save time when we have 24 hour or shorter warning before the Shit Hit the Fan, I have been operating under the assumption that we are running out of time so I have largely finished all preps that require shipping or ordering online. When you have 24 hours left, you are restricted to local resources. Do your shopping first before you do other preperatory steps because it does not take a lot of people with the same idea to strip stores bare of the essentials - especially for items that are not heavily stocked. I have twenty items on my list:

My first step would be to assess the threat scenario as different ones require somewhat different preps. Nuclear weapons / fallout, civil unrest, and pandemics are special cases with additional steps.

My second step is to review my current inventory and update my shopping lists as needed. I do this roughly once per month. By having a list, you save time when shopping and you can prioritize based on the amount of resources. When you do this, assess your personal needs and prepping gaps - you may need to reorder your shopping priorities.

Check your current account balances. Under a SHTF scenario, you can assume no access to these for either a short-term period (e.g. a Hurricane Katrina event if you live in Biloxi and bank with a local bank or a "bank holiday") or a permanent loss of access (economic collapse; nuclear war). Even if you are able to obtain access later, you cannot guarantee that the funds will have the same value - especially after a bank holiday.

Stop at your bank and take the maximum amount of cash you can from your accounts. There are both daily limits per account and limits in terms of how much cash most bank branches have on hand at the bank. It does not take very many customers asking for several thousand dollars or more each to empty the bank of cash.

Food is your #1 priority. I would start with Costco and grocery store runs. Even with a good food storage program, you alway burn through your supplies. Spend your money on foods that do not need refrigeration. You might want to stock extra coffee, alcohol, and canning supplies as trade goods that you also use. In addition, you should think about buying foods to can and dehydrate - you can do these later in the day or in the next several days. If you have a nuclear scenario where you need to shelter in place in your fallout shelter, buy extra food that does not need to be prepared along with paper plates, plastic utensils, and paper towels so you don't need to use stored water to clean dishes. Get several containers of regular bleech (without any scents) - even if you have bleech stored, it looses its decontamination properties in as little as three months.

Your next stop should be your local gun store or the gun section of Wal-Mart or your local sporting goods store. Get more ammunition. Also, get any other gun or camping supplies you identified as a gap. If you do not have a gun, this is your last chance to get one.

If you do not have an emergency shortwave radio, get one. Likewise, if you do not have FMRS/GMRS / MURS walkie-talkie radios, get some.

Stock up on more batteries while at Costco or Wal-Mart.

Stop at the gas station and fill every car up with fuel. Also, get some 5 gallon gas cans and fill them up.

Get additional propane tanks and fill them.

Buy containers to store water. Your priorities are a) 5 gallon water tanks (Wal-Mart usually stock several but they will be gone fast), b) large trash bags (use as liners for trash cans and bath tubs and then fill and cable tie them), and c) kiddie plastic swiming pools with covers. When you get home after all of your shopping, fill all of these with water. In a nuclear scenario, these are extra shielding for you and should be inside. Otherwise, the plastic swimming pool can be outside.

Upgrade your medical supplies as needed. If there is a threat of a pandemic, be sure to get N95 masks, and lots of garlic, sambucol (elderberry extract), grape fruit seed extract, oregano oil (or Oregonal brand of oregano oil), olive leaf extract, and other natural medicines. You probably will need to go to a healh food or vitamin store to get the natural medicines. Also stock up on female products for the ladies - my wife doesn't stock enough.

Stop at your local feed store for more feed for your animals. You can often get 50 pound bags of oats, corn, and grain and many feed stores that humans can eat. Depending on the threat scenario, you might want to buy seeds, farming gear, and livestock if possible.

If you expect civil unrest, stop at a building supply store and get a bunch of 4'x8' sheets of 3/4" thick plywood, 5 lbs of screws, some 2"x4" studs, and lots of 3/4" gravel. When you get home, you will cut the plywood to size to cover your ground floor windows and glass patio doors. You can also use the plywood and the 2x4 studs to make bullet trap boxes with the gravel. If they have plexiglass or lexan sheets at least 1/4" thick large enough to cover your windows, those could be used instead of the plywood. While at the building supply store, you might want to get the parts you need to rig a rain water harvesting system.

If you have a nuclear fallout scenario, get extra sheet plastic and trash bags (or sand bags). You also need to get HEPA air filters for your home air intake pipes if you have a heat recovery ventilator or mechanical ventilator system.

Also buy lots of caulk and spray foam to weatherize and seal your house as best you can (if you have not already done this).

You will need to build (or improve) a fallout shelter. You need lots of mass. Think in terms of 2 ft of concrete or 3+ ft of dirt, sandbags, water, books, and/or anything else of comparable mass that you can move. You can use firewood as well but you need ~5 ft high densely packed piles. You also want to cover gardens, equipment, firewood piles, outdoor furniture, open animal sheds, etc with sheet plastic to catch any fallout and to simplify decontamination and cleanup after the fallout ends and radiation drops to safe levels. Finally, buy all of the parts you need to build an air pump for your shelter and a Kearny fallout meter (if you do not have a fallout meter).

Before you spend any money on big ticket items, trade goods, or gold/silver, make sure you are secure in all of the items covered above first. Generators could be something to get but remember they are only as good as long as you have fuel to run them. In the last minute, you may not be able to stock more than several days worth of fuel for the generator.

You can invest any remaining cash in trade goods or gold / silver assuming you have a local source who has gold or silver in stock.

Spend using credit cards first, then checks and debit cards before you use any cash.

If you have a retreat or retreat plans, now is the time to gather your family, load your vehicles, and bug out.

If you are remaining in your neighborhood, warn your neighbors and help them prepare. Even a large stocking up grocery run to Costco or a Wal-Mart supercenter can significantly improve their level of preparedness.

You might want to think about preparing LP/OP positions in certain scenarios. However, do all of your other preps first, including preparing your house.

Dr. Richard
Virginia Preppers Network

Original: http://wwwstayalive.blogspot.com/2009/03/final-24-hours-entry.html

SHTF: Post Crash Travel, BOV, Car Wars

The topic of ground travel, by car, truck or tank, has been explored post-SHTF for years. In survivalism, there are two schools of thought:

Bug In - In your current retreat, or after a quick trip, to another retreat. Residents will "hunker down" and wait things out or move on with their life in their new home.

Bug Out - Can mean one of two things: Leave for a distant retreat or stay on the road traveling from place to place searching for supplies and a place to hole up.

Let's tackle Bug Out.

There is nothing wrong with planning on getting out of dodge, say an urban or suburban location, for a remote rural area. Having a fixed destination, be it yours or a friends is a plan for many survivalists.

However, remaining mobile is another matter. Highways and Interstates will be the first to become impassable and later, a series of traps and ambushes.

Next will come the secondary roads and state highways. Towns will be roadblocked and open areas will house more ambushes and traps - some temporary and others permanent.

Finally, roads surrounded by any number of towns or refugee camps will become the lairs of bandits and vermin lying in wait.

In the Mad Max world, scavengers roamed the back roads and highways for a tank of juice or can of dog food. That unrealistic situation would end in the real world with a simple roadblock or cinder block tossed through a moving car window.

In reality, roads would be the last place I would want to wander around on searching for supplies or shelter.

However, having a vehicle to get from Point A (home) to Point B (retreat) is necessary. Word to the wise: you can never haul everything with you. A car or truck can only hold so much. Maybe a month or two of food, a few guns and any available remaining room populated by gasoline, spare tires and water.

A trailer is useful, but remember, that is another set of tires to go flat and the weight drastically slows down the ability of the vehicle hauling it. A trailer should have been loaded and moved long before the SHTF.

Nope, for me, a BOV (bug out vehicle) is an off road capable pickup, high off the ground, with a week or two of supplies in the back, family and friends inside the cab and enough firearms on board to keep bad guys off my back.

Supplies for the retreat will have been propositioned and additional supplies, if needed, will have to be obtained or bartered for later. There is no way I am going to haul six months worth of canned goods, a generator and 500 gallons of fuel along for the ride. Too much and too dangerous.

A BOV is a last ditch option as well. Unless totally necessary, a plan which involves hitting the road at the last minute is not a real plan. For instance, if economic collapse is the problem, like now, it will build over a period of time giving one plenty of time to plan a long term exodus to a retreat.

However, in an unexpected nuclear strike scenario, fleeing at a moment's notice will be the rule of the day. If this should happen, keep these suggestions in mind..

- Have the car or cars always full of fuel or close to it.
- An extra five gallon can filled for each car. Do this now.
- At least one extra empty five gallon gas car for each vehicle.
- Maintain the spare tire in the vehicle and consider adding another kept in the garage which can be tied to the roof.
- Have bug out bags always ready.
- Have portable food and water ready to go as well.
- Family and friends should be trained to get out the door and in the car in minutes, not hours.
- One car is easier than trying to maintain a caravan of untrained vehicles.
- Have radios including FRS and CB for contact. Don't count on cell phones.
- Have directions and driving plans laid out ahead of time. Do not plan on using the main roads, interstates, highways or toll roads. Instead use back streets, country roads and trails for escape.
- Have rally points along the way with times and meetups arranged ahead of time.
- Plan on refueling and rest stops along the way. Don't count on the kindness of strangers or traditional businesses being open.
- Don't stop for any reason until the final destinations are reached.

The roads are the last place I would want to be post-SHTF. One day you are in a vehicle, the next on foot and a day later, taking a dirt nap. Either bug in or bug out with the minimum supplies and plan today on stocking what you need tomorrow.

Original: http://survivalism.blogspot.com/2009/03/shtf-post-crash-travel-bov-car-wars.html

Prepare: Budget Survival Food List

I have made similar entries on this topic before, but it comes up frequently in conversations with others unfamiliar or new to preparing.

Food. We take for granted that the grocers will be open twenty four by seven down the street or that Costco will have pallets of food always available. The reality is, we have it good with the amount and supply of food in our stores. It was not always that way.

Two generations ago, the standard grocery store was a corner Piggly Wiggly not much bigger than a 7-11. It was dominated by canned goods and staples like flour and sugar. Produce was out front in barrows for passersby to examine and purchase. A butcher stood at the back of the store and cut steaks and chops to order. There was no plastic wrapped meat and shoppers had a limited, but fresh choice of meats.

A generation before that, we had open markets with butchers, green grocers and the like often time hawking still living animals like chickens, geese and ducks. Eggs sat in baskets next to metal covered cans of milk.

And here we are today. With massive warehouses of food minutes away from home. Walmart, Sams, Costco and he numerous supermarkets as well.

Food, comparatively speaking to earlier generations, is still cheap. Those oranges from Brazil, coconuts and bananas from the Pacific, limes from Mexico were unheard of in our grandparents time. And the cost back then would have been a working man's wages for a handful or bananas or lemons.

However, at the same time that food is available and cheap, it is also a blink away from being gone. For instance, what happens when gasoline is no longer available for shipping? Or if civil war breaks out in Mexico? Or a virus or bug affects crops in Florida or North Dakota?

We depend so much upon healthy water, air, conditions, weather, relations with other countries and fuel that any of these factors or a combination of them could disrupt our food supplies in just a few days.

Fortunately for you and me, most of our fellow citizens are still scarfing down a) fast food, b) to go meals from restaurants, c) prepared foods from the gourmet grocers, d) frozen meals and e) a pre-packaged diet plan advertised by a middle aged celebrity which means..

There is plenty of food for us today and tomorrow to stock up on. Regular things like produce, meat, canned and packaged food, and frozen staples. That means we can stock up now and go back for more tomorrow before it is all gone.

With the diminishing power of the dollar, how long before Mexico, Chile or Brazil decide they aren't going to send any more lemons, limes, oranges or bananas our way?

Or what if the Middle East goes nuclear bonkers (five minutes away any day) and oil shoots to 200.00 a barrel? Nearly everything in the store will be in short supply or so high priced your mortgage payment will look like a deal compared to food.

With money tight, what can you do today?

First, stock up on things which can make meals for several days and months. Not a frozen "hot pocket pizza" but real food.

Suggestions -

- Rice
- Dried beans
- Powdered milk
- oil and cooking lard
- canned vegetables and fruit
- canned meats like tuna and salmon.
- Sugar, syrup and honey.
- spices
- salt
- canned soups
- flour, baking powder and baking soda

All of these foods will keep for months if not years. And when combined together, can make healthy and filling foods.

This will work as long as water and power are available. For water, start storing water now and have a plan to get more. Even rain water can be filtered and boiled and drunk. Further power can come from a hot plate attached to a car battery if need be.

Best of all, budget and money. These foods above are relatively inexpensive. Unlike Long Term Foods like MRE, these ingredients can be combined to make many meals over a long period of time. MRE and the like are good for short term, on the move meals and worse of all, are very expensive.

So, save some money, make a list and start stockpiling these foods now. One more piece of advice, augment your stored food with a decent garden. Seeds are real cheap and available right now.

Original: http://survivalism.blogspot.com/2009/03/prepare-budget-survival-food-list.html

Preparedness for Fido and Kitty

rocky1I’ve had cats and I’ve had dogs. Regardless, they have always felt very much a part of my family. My concern for their care in an emergency is every bit as important to me as anyone else in my family. Here are some tips for you to implement in order to have peace of mind in case of an emergency.

1) Start training your pets now how to properly greet and interact with others. You must teach them when it is appropriate to “bark” now or you could compromise your safety in the future.

puppy-play2) Be sure that you have a sufficient “grab and go” pack for your pets in the event you have to leave your home immediately for 2 to 3 days. The items in this bag should contain food, water plus a container, a familiar toy, spare leash and collar, a blanket and some bedding.

3) Be sure that you have the means of filing their nails. In the event that you have to trek a ways, long nails will get infected and complicate their travel. It’s surprising how many people who don’t file their pets nails and rely on the groomer to do so instead.

4) Have familiar toys stored for your pet. Be mindful to play with them in the same fashion they are used to when you find yourself having to rough it while you’re riding out a disaster.

ginger-teething5) Have teeth cleaning supplies available. In an emergency, it’s very likely that your pet will be eating—or attempting to—foreign items to their diet. These items will be foreign to their dental care as well. In the event of an emergency, a trip to the vet will not be feasible, so be sure that you have supplies for the care of their teeth as well as your own.

6) Rather than just a collar, have a halter for them. In an emergency, your pet may have plenty of reasons to respond to their surroundings differently that you are accustomed to. A harness/halter is more sturdy in maintaining their positions and less stressful for their neck. Be sure the halter is rugged. While the cute harnesses are fashionable, they may do little to ensure the safety of your pets should you have to head for the hills.

sturdy-leash7) Be sure that you have a secure means of tethering them. Allowing your dogs or cats to roam wild in an emergency state is not smart! I don’t mean to be overly graphic, but people and/or animals may see them as food instead of family members. Keep them with you for your own safety as well as that of others. Consider a stake in the ground and a sturdy adjustable leash. You don’t want your pet resorting to his natural instincts of running in a pack with other strays. Plan on keeping him with you as a part of your family if you want him to remain a part of your family.

8 ) Store their breed and medical documentation in a waterproof package. Just as you would want your valuable documents for your identification and health, you will also want them for your pets as well.

9) Prepare for medical fix-ups for your pets. Have bandages, sewing kits, super glue, brushes, picks, tweezers, and other medically necessary items. Should you have a prescription for your pet, be sure to have some extra accessible to ride out an unexpected event as well.

ginger-bag10) Think in advance about what you need in order to transport your pet. That might be a carrier, a box, a wagon, etc, since you can’t expect your pet to walk all the time. You may also find that for his own safety you have to confine him.

11) Store a year’s supply of food for your pet. If it’s good advice for you, it’s good advice for them. While you may find yourself thinking they will just live off of spare foods or mice, think twice. Do you want your animals to eat other rabid animals? Do you want your animals to have the most nutrition available to them in order for them to survive a stressful situation the same as you? Of course. Then feed them what they know, and what you are certain contains nutrition for them. If you store the dry food in a plastic sealed bucket with an oxygen packet, it will last much longer than it will in its original packaging.

sinta-clothes12) It’s not a bad idea to have some clothing available for your pet. While I’m not an advocate of dressing your pet up regularly, there are at least two items that your pet can use that will save you both a lot of hassle. Get booties for them in the event they have to walk more then they are accustomed to. It will preserve the soft portion of their paws from getting splinters or cuts. Also, get a rain repellant vest for them wear as well. Be sure that it fits them properly. You definitely don’t want it too tight or you’ll have other problems to deal with such as blisters and infections.


Original: http://preparednesspro.wordpress.com/2009/03/17/preparedness-for-fido-and-kitty/

Friday - Thinking, Goal Setting, and Decision Making

It's Friday!

The end of the work week and another original post about what's going on in the world/my life.

Getting started in emergency preparedness is pretty easy. You buy some food, store some water, get a gun or two, learn some first aid, and do a few upgrades on you car and home. Easy, right.

Until, you start digging deeper. You begin to see how fragile the systems, we rely on for our survival, have become. Food, water, protection, our rights, the list becomes interconnected and endless.

Then, you start getting ready as fast as you can.

For me, I can't do everything at once. I don't have an endless supply of money or time, so I have to prioritize. Once I prioritize, remember your "Threat Analysis," I start setting goals.

Remember, your threat analysis will be different from mine.

To set my goals, I use a goal setting sequence.

Goal Setting

1. Set a Goal that is Measurable and Attainable

2. Set A Timeline (when is it going to be completed and how you will know when you have completed it)

3. What are your resources

4. What are you limitations

5. Break your goal down into smaller steps

6. Reward yourself when you have completed your goal (or the smaller objectives)

Let's look at an example:
I want to have 860 rounds of 5.56mm (ammunition for an AR-15) in a military ammo can. For me, the ammo must have the same lot numbers.

1. Set a Goal
860 rounds in a ammo can

2. Set a Timeline
By the end of April '09

3. What are my resources
100 dollars a week for the next 4 weeks. I already have an ammo can

4. What are my limitations
Hard to save money and I can be distracted from my goals

5. Break the goal down into smaller steps
Write out the order for my ammunition, today. Put 100 dollars in an envelope, for the next four weeks. Once I have $400, buy a money order and send in my order.

6. Reward yourself
Shoot some of my older ammo

Now, This next thought may have needed to come first or it should have been second, but either way you will have to make decisions. It is similar to the OODA Loop that I talked about earlier, this week.

Decision Making Process

1. Identify the Problem

2. Brain Storm Solutions

3. Pros and Cons of each Solution

4. Choose a Solution (with the most Pros)

5. Act on that Solution

6. Review the Outcome

If you don't know what "Brain Storming" is, ask a 5th Grader. If you don't have a 5th Grader handy,

Brain Storming

1. List all of the possible solutions to a problem

2. Discard all of the outrageous ideas

3. Choose the top 5 or 10 ideas

There is more, but that is pretty much what you will need to know for the decision making process, I am writing about.

Before I go, I would like to leave you with a quote:

"Logic are the lies we tell ourselves when we make a decision based on emotion" Someone You Know


Effective Meetings.com - Teams, Brain Storming Techniques

Wikipedia - Brain Storming

DANA Foundation - Decision Making and Planning

Original: http://gsiep.blogspot.com/2009/03/friday-thinking-goal-setting-and.html

Your Survival Garden Needs Molasses for the Good Guys

Molasses isn’t just for cornbread any more. Believe it or not, you can—and should—be using it in your garden or on the farm because it boosts growth of friendly microbes in the soil. As a result your plants will grow as nutrients become more readily available to them.

A number of people have experimented with a mixture of molasses and compost or fertilizer. Two tablespoons of unsulfured molasses per gallon of water or liquid fertilizer is all you need for jump starting nitrogen fixing bacteria and other friendly microbes, including good fungi. Those good guys need food, too, if they’re to be beneficial to the plants, and molasses provides the carbohydrates and energy they need. If you’ve heard of the idea that you have to feed the soil to feed the plants, well this is it.

Good bacteria in soil will kill off pathogens, the disease causing microbes. With molasses added to your compost, you may not need to use as much compost. The good guys of the microbial world will make nutrients more readily available for your plants.

Incidentally, fire ants don’t like molasses. Pour a molasses solution in your yard or around trees where they may be living, and they’ll move away.

Unsulfured molasses is the best for adding to your soil or compost. In fact, organic blackstrap unsulfured molasses is ideal. If you can’t find it locally, try Amazon.com. They carry several brands and sizes of unsulfured molasses. One of them is 16 oz. of Plantation brand Organic Blackstrap Molasses, which is one of Amazon’s best selling grocery items and has received five out of five star evaluations. Click on the logo below to order some for yourself, and watch your survival garden produce like never before.

I'm adding molasses to compost and soil mixes this year myself and am looking forward to good results. If you try this out, please feel free to leave a comment and report on your results for other readers.

How's Your Home Water Supply for Survival?

Until I heard on the news that Sunday is World Water Day, I had never heard of it before. Apparently somewhere there are people debating about whether having adequate clean water is a human right or merely a need. I wasn’t thinking about any of that when I came across the information that follows. All I know is, when you need water, you really need it. We can’t live without it.

If you’re homesteading, or are planning to, you’ll be glad to know there’s a helpful resource from Lehman’s called The Home Water Supply. As Lehman’s puts it, sooner or later you're bound to need this book, whether you live in the country or suburbs. The Home Water Supply offers down-to-earth, money-saving solutions to common water problems, such as bad-taste, pump malfunctions, and contaminated wells. There are also sections on finding, moving, purifying, storing and conserving water. There are clear illustrations depicting operation of pumps and other equipment, underground flow, digging a pond and home plumbing.”

Lehman’s has been helping families live a more self reliant lifestyle for decades. They offer more than books on the subject of water for your home. Among other things, they carry pumps and other items you’ll need. Click on the Water category on their site’s sidebar to see what they have to offer. Incidentally, The Home Water Supply is featured among the Related Books in this Water category.

The Home Water Supply is an important guide for managing your own water system. To order your copy, click on the Lehman’s logo and type item number 663240 in the search box to be taken to the page featuring the book.

Lehman's where old fashioned is always in fashion.

Food and misc.

Looking at the pantry got me to thinking why not do a post on the food I have and why I choose what I did. Some folks like to store buckets of wheat. Me? Not so much. I don’t think that I’ve ever bought a bucket of wheat in my life and I hope that I never have to either.

My stores mostly are based on canned foods. Granted by having a large portion of your food preps based on canned goods that you are giving up the ability to pack it and move fast if need be. Face it canned food weighs a lot. Do you have a bunch of GOOD can openers? Did you see my excellent and the best entry ever ever ever on can openers?

My plan though is to stay in my house. Only if my town became unsafe because of environmental or security reasons would I decide to bug out. Other than that though my house holds all my stuff so I’d rather stay put if possible. It would have to get really, really bad for me to blow off the jobs and hightail it out. The other downside is that prepared canned foods have a ton of salt in them.

I’ve been buying extra food for about 18 months now. You obviously want to eat your oldest stuff first and you need a system to ensure that that happens. I have a Sharpie pen. You should buy one too. Anytime I get back from the market I write the month and the year on the can, box, package or bag. That way you can be sure to be on a FIFO system. You also need have the discipline so when you use something you write it down so you remember to replace it.

One of something is none of something. Now you got two of somethings and you can start to talk.

Now just checking out my food let’s try to tell you what I generally have so you don’t forget anything. I don’t mean to rag on the buckets of wheat folks, but buckets of wheat? I don’t even like whole grain bread.

Breakdown of food stores:

  • I have some prepared foods like chili, soups, ravioli, beef stew, corned beef hash, chicken ala king, sloppy joe mix and those sort of things.
  • A good pile of canned tomatoes - the big 32 oz. cans and an assortment of smaller cans of sauce, paste, stewed, chunks, cans with chilies or basil. Also, have spaghetti sauce in jars and you know what the spaghetti sauce that comes in cans is great. It’s real tomatoie. The canned spaghetti sauce is cheaper than the glass jarred sauce too.
  • Then you need veggies like green beans, french cut beans, carrots, spinach, asparagus and corn. I like Chinese food so I also have cans of water chestnuts, bamboo shoots, chow mein mix and bean sprouts. If I can’t buy my number 5 with fried, eggroll and chicken fingers than I’ll make it myself. Don’t forget jars of salsa. I also like Goya salsa verde, salsa roja and Mexican salsa. They come in little cans, but it’s good stuff.
  • Then there are the canned potatoes, both whole and sliced.
  • You gotta have your fruits so have a variety of fruits in cans and the little plastic tubs. Stuff like mandarin oranges, pears, fruit cocktail, pineapple,peaches, tropical mix with mangoes (!), applesauce and a good assortment of canned fruit juice, coconut juice and coconut milk.
  • Get a shelf with proteins on it like canned roast beef, canned chicken, some small canned hams, tuna, also that real tasty Italian tuna in olive oil, Spam, potted ham and Vienna sausage. Get some cryovacced sausage that can be stored at room temp. Can’t forget about the anchovies, sardines, canned crab, oysters and smoked trout. Seafood is high in fatty acids that are good for you.
  • You know you need a good pile of spaghetti, pasta, egg noodles, rice, Chinese and Japanese noodles.
  • Boxed stuff like ramen noodle and macaroni and cheese. The ramen noodles are incredible. They are so small and so cheap and I don’t think they ever go bad. I like them. They can be spiced up by adding spices, proteins or veggies to them. Add a can of tuna to mac n’ cheese and all is good. Also in here would be the hamburger helper, boxed scalloped and au gratin taters along with stove top stuffing. Don’t forget about bags of soup mix. These things are great too. A package of soup mix, 8 cups of water, a can of this or that and you can feed 10 people if you had to. Charity, helping and assistance are a good thing.
  • Canned beans of all sorts. My favorites are small red beans and garbanzo beans. Cans of baked beans are good too. You can make a nice spread from mashing garbanzo beans.
  • Also have some dried beans.
  • Some snacks like crackers, granola bars, poptarts, bags of chips, pretzels, and cans of pretzels, chips and tater sticks. Can’t forget to get chocolate pudding and chocolate bars. Some old fashioned popcorn is a great snack too. It pops fast in a little hot oil.
  • Then there are the drinks. I like juice so I have canned juice concentrates. I water them way down because corn syrup is death. Also need tubs of Tang, ice tea, funky red stuff, lemonaide and whatever you may like. Tea is great because it tastes good. Plus you can teas for specific ailments or if you can’t sleep or have a cold. Don’t forget powdered milk if you like milk. Coffee and teas and non-dairy creamer. Hot chocolate.
  • You need your spices: garlic and onion powders, lots of black pepper corns. Don’t ever buy pepper that is already ground. You don’t have to know why, just don’t do it. Get peppercorns and smash them yourself, with a hammer if you need to. Walgreens sells already filled salt and pepper grinders for a buck a piece. So you hhotsaucecatalog_2046_7327548ave chili powder, dried herbs like: oregano, Italian, rosemary, basil, thyme, dill, crushed red pepper and so on. Any special rubs you may like. I like Jamaican jerk and Paul Prudhomme redfish magic. If you like grated cheese on your pasta you better buy a bunch and store it. The dry kind in a jar can last a long time.
  • You also need your sauces and condiments like bbq sauce, ketchup, mustard, soy sauce, chili garlic sauce, hot sauces, terriyaki. I like things spicy so I have Tabasco, Franks, Buffalo, Siricha (that is Sriracha to the right.) It’s from Vietnam and it’s spicy and flavorful. Don’t forget relish, pickles, jalapenos, pepperoncini and other hot peppers.
  • Sweeteners - I like that natural brown sugar for my coffee. You need maple syrup and honey. I don’t think honey ever goes bad. Also try to get a good pile of sugars both brown and refined. I like molasses so we got some molasses. Might as well put jams and jellies here too.
  • Don’t forget gravies. A gravy will make anything more palatable. You can buy cans, jars and packages of gravy that you just need to add a cup of water to and heat. A can of roast beef, a pack of gravy, a cup of water and some egg noodles or rice and you got a good dinner.
  • Salt gets its own bullet point. You need lots of salt. Salt will last forever as long as you don’t let it get washed away. Salt can be used to pickle things and cure things. You need lots of salt. Near the ocean you can at least make some salt through evaporation. Inland I don’t know. Get a variety of salts: pickling, kosher and iodized. You should also get some one pound containers because that size would be good for bartering if it ever gets that bad. You should make sure that you have salt and pepper in your bug out bag. Store pounds and pounds of salt. I’d say you need to think in the tens of pound range for storing salt.
  • Vinegar also gets its own category. Vinegar can be used to cure and pickle things. Vinegar is also a great all natural cleaner. Get cider vinegar, red wine, distilled and balsamic. You can get most of them in gallon containers for small money and vinegar lasts a very long time. I’d say you need to think of vinegar in gallons.
  • Baking stuff like flours and packaged goods like pancake mix, corn bread mix, Bisquick, bags of pizza mix and yeast. The bags of pizza dough mix are great, under a buck on sale. Might as well throw in the corn meal, oatmeal, corn starch, evaporated milk and such other things in this category.
  • Fats - I like olive oil a lot so I buy it by the gallon when it goes on sale. Olive oil can last a long time if it is kept cool and in a dark spot. You also need to get lots of corn or vegetable oil. By it by the gallon and keep it in a cool dark spot. You need fats in your diet and it makes clean up easier which may save you water. Some folks like canned butter. I don’t have any, but I’d like to try it.
  • I’d also give bouillon it’s own category. There are all kinds: chicken, beef, fish and pork. You can add bouillon to rice or make your own soups from scratch. A few cubes, a box of elbows, cans of corn, beans and tomatoes and you got some minestrone soup.

Get outside everyday. Got a day off midweek last week so went skiing with a friend. It was my first and only time downhill skiing this year that I didn’t hike up in order to ski down. The tickets were $62 each!!! But, but, but, but they got six inches of snow the day before and this day promised to be sunny, warm and not too much wind. it was a great day.

sk17The ski area we went to was Mount Sunapee. That’s Lake Sunapee there that you are looking at. You probably can’t make it out, but there are still ice fishing huts on the ice and snow mobile tracks criss crossing the lake.

When we pay that much, which we never do, we make sure to get as much out of the day as possible so of course we got there well before the lifts opened. The lifts generally open at 9, but we were lucky to be riding up at 8:55. We skied until 1:30 or there abouts, ate lunch outside on a picnic table and back on the lifts by two. The lifts close at 4 and we managed to still be riding the lift after 4.


We were the third persons on in the morning when the place opened and the third from the last in the afternoon when the place closed. I bet we skied over 35,000 vertical feet. We’ve both been skiing a long time. It’s good when you go with someone that skis like you do becuase you can ski the same trails without holding eachother up.

Original: http://hotdogjam.wordpress.com/2009/03/19/food-and-misc/

The nuisance of biting bugs during a bug out

By Joseph Parish

Proper planning must be taken in order to ensure that you and your family are not devoured by biting bugs during a bug out. Most of the current insect repellents on the market today use DEET as the active ingredient. You will find it in just about the entire over the counter product line that you can purchase. Supposedly, the DEET in the repellants today can be safely used on children as young as two months old as well as on adults.

There are several tricks of the trade that you can do while bugging out which would cut down drastically on the insects bothering you. First consider soft drinks. Try to stay away from open beverage cans which contain sweeteners. Keep well in mind that sodas attract the stinging insects.

Never wear perfume or after shave lotion outside. As a survivalist you should already be well familiar with this rule. To do so you are merely inviting trouble.

Try to avoid large areas of water. Don’t stop your BOV for the evening near a large pond as you are certain to get eaten up. Standing water provides breeding grounds for certain insects including the annoying mosquitoes. Never leave containers filled with water outside your BOV.

It goes without saying that you should always dress accordingly. Always wear your shoes and wear long pants when possible as well as a lightweight long sleeved shirt. The key is to cover as much of your skin as you possibly can. This way you will be afforded the most protection from the biting insects.

Regardless of what you do you perhaps will still get bites and stings. If you do use antihistamines to limit the itching and reduce the swelling. Acetaminophen or ibuprofen also helps reduce swelling from the bites while relieving some of the associated pain. A cream such as hydrocortisone has been known to alleviate some of the itching. Make sure you have plenty of all these medications in your vehicles first aid kit.

If you get stung by a bee, hornet, wasp or yellow jackets follow these rules. Bees will generally leave a stinger attached to a venom sac. You can see this by looking closely at the sting area. Try to remove the stinger as quickly as you possible can. Gently scrape it with a blunt type object like a credit card. Wash the area very carefully with plenty of fresh soap and water. You may have to do this several times a day until you see an improvement in the area of the bite. Don’t forget to apply an ice pack to the area for a few minutes and provide acetaminophen for any pain.

If perchance you obtain a sting in your mouth this would warrant an immediate trip to a medical professional. A sting that occurs in the mucous membranes can rapidly cause severe swelling which could conceivably block the airways. If you experience any of the following conditions be sure to seek medical attention.

  • Wheezing
  • difficulty of breathing
  • tightness of chest
  • swelling within the lips
  • dizziness
  • fainting
  • nausea
  • vomiting

Bugging out in the woods is certain to invite specific dangers. If you are bite by a spider you should first consider that most spiders that are found in America are essentially harmless. The exception to this is the black widow or the brown recluse spider. These spiders are usually found in the warmer climates. Wash the bite area with plenty of soap and water three times daily until it is healed. You could apply compresses if needed and provide acetaminophen to ease pain.

If you suspect that you have been bitten by a black widow or a brown recluse spider apply ice to the area as soon as you can. Get to a hospital immediately. The symptoms of these spider bites include:

  • purple or deep blue area around the bite
  • a white ring with a large outer red ring
  • muscle spasms
  • abdominal pain
  • headache
  • fever
  • Sick feeling
  • Lose of appetite
  • Painful joints
  • vomiting

If you happen to be bugging out to the northeast or the upper Midwest you should be cautious about being bit by ticks which may possibly be carrying the Lyme disease. Since we would be spending a lot of time outdoors during a bug out situation these would constitute our major concern. Try to wear white clothing so that you can readily see the little blood suckers as they appear on your clothes. Have your socks cover your pant legs to prevent them from getting on your lower legs. Always check your hair in the evening.

If you discover a tick on your child you should immediately contact the doctor. Keep the tick in a jar of alcohol in case the doctor wants to examine it. Use a pair of tweezers to grasp the head of the tick firmly as close to your skin as you can. Pull it firmly out and then swab the bite area with alcohol. Do not use a match or petroleum jelly to kill or remove the tick.

Careful actions on our part when bugging out can create a safe and secure outing situation for both you and your family.

Copyright @ 2009 Joseph Parish

Original: http://survival-training.blogspot.com/2009/03/nuisance-of-biting-bugs-during-bug-out.html

How far can you go?

By Joseph Parish

I have always been very keen on imagining scenarios and events that can perchance curtail a necessary bug out. In fact, I pride myself in perceiving just how far I am able to travel safely when bugging out becomes necessary. By safely I mean a combination of an tolerable distance, mileage that is reasonable and the lack of un-necessary delays. Let me take a moment and go into a little further detail in relation to these requirements.

First off and to me the most imperative point is just how far I can journey safely. To me safely indicates that I can proceed onto my established itinerary and not be required to pause for gas. The key here then lies in just how many miles your vehicle can travel on a tank of gas. This distance is lengthened greatly if you have the potential to transport a considerable sum of gasoline with you.

Stopping at gasoline stations when you are bugging out can be not only hazardous but down right time consuming. You have hundreds of cars heading in the same route as you and many of them may perhaps be low on fuel at the same time as you are. That means some very long lines waiting to be refueled. Extended lines mean short tempers and frayed nerves. It doesn’t take too much to light a short fuse in situations such as these. People can only manage so much pressure before they start to break down. Additionally, you have to question whether the gasoline stations will run out of fuel prior to you getting your turn to fill up and what price they will charge when they take into consideration the supply and demand factors.

Mileage therefore to me is the distance that I can go on a solitary tank of gas whether it is 300 or 400 or even more miles before having to refuel. I have tried to maintain a bug out retreat within the mileage of my vehicles gas tank. I do not under any circumstance wish to stop if I can help it.

In emergency situations delays can be fatal and I advocate that everybody try their best to avert them. Suitable planning and common sense can pull you through the ordeal and you will be at your safe retreat in no time at all.

Copyright @ 2009 Joseph Parish

Original: http://www.survival-training.info/articles10/Howfarcanyougo.htm