Tuesday, April 14, 2009
- How to Live in Your Car Forum
- Car Living a Vital Skill
- Car Living and Communication
- Wikihow: How to Live in Your Car
- How to Live in Your Car
- The Other Mobile Home
- How to Live in Your Van
Anyway, that should give you some good general knowledge about living out of your vehicle should worse come to worse.
Ok, I admit it. I used to hate powdered milk as a kid. But I have to admit, it’s come a long ways in 30 years, thank goodness. With the cost of milk nowadays, if you’ve got more than 2 mouths to feed, it can cost as much for milk as it does to fill up your car with gas. And if you’re a “dairy freak” like I am, you’ll wonder what in the world you’ll do in the event of an emergency when you may be FORCED to use powdered milk regularly.
Other than the fact that I always type the word “powdered” incorrectly, I truly do value this storage staple. It will indulge my every dairy craving in a pinch, including buttermilk, cream cheese, sour cream, yogurt, and cottage cheese. Just a little bit of culturing and it turns into whatever dairy product I desire. In fact, I can even combine it with an equal amount of ice water and some flavoring and turn it into a yummy fluffy dessert topping. And it’s great in all of my recipes. It costs half as much as “fresh” milk, has zero cholesterol, zero fat, and is high in calcium, vitamin D and protein. And hey, it even comes in an easy to store box which I can neatly stack on my shelves. I have found no problem using it as a milk substitute in every recipe with just a bit of water added to it. I can also make dry baked mixes or beverage mixes ahead of time with it with no need for anything else but water. Ironically, the only thing I don’t care for powdered milk is as a substitute for just plain milk. However, I have discovered the trick of adding in a ½ teaspoon of vanilla per half gallon of powdered milk mixture to make it taste a lot better. I find that powdered milk tastes just fine when mixed equally with whole milk as well. Plus, I’ve never had kids complain when I mix chocolate syrup or strawberry syrup in it straight.
Powdered milk tastes best if it is mixed up and allowed to chill overnight before serving, or for at least 4 hours. Chilling actually aids in dissolving the powdered milk completely and gives it a fresher flavor.
OK. To use powdered milk for just about anything, you first need to learn to reconstitute it. So let’s start with that.
Reconstituted Powdered Milk:
Take a 2 quart pitcher and fill it just over half with very cold tap water. Then add 2 and 2/3 cup of powdered milk. Using a long whisk, whisk the milk until it appears to be well mixed and the milk appears to be mostly dissolved. Then fill the pitcher to full with additional cold water. It’s best to have a lid on the pitcher and then place it in the refrigerator overnight or at least 4 hours.
To make buttermilk from reconstituted milk, you’re going to need some “starter.” But don’t worry. You can buy the small pints of buttermilk and store them in your freezer until you’re ready to use them.
Cultured Buttermilk: You won’t believe how easy this is! Take 3 and ¾ cups of reconstituted milk and add it to ½ cup of commercial buttermilk. Allow it to sit on the counter overnight (8 to 10 hours at room temperature) and Voila! You’ve got buttermilk! (I store it refrigerated thereafter, just so you know.) I have to have buttermilk to make my all time favorite syrup recipe (Sorry, I’m going to save that for another post).
Here’s another idea that I have loved to use with powdered milk. It’s called “molasses milk.” All you do is warm up about ¾ cup of reconstituted milk and then stir in a regular spoonful of molasses (double and triple accordingly). It’s yummy. It kind of tastes like caramel toffee. And here you thought that molasses was just for cookies.
Hopefully from reading this you’ve thought about the importance of having powdered milk in your supplies, along with molasses, chocolate syrup, and vanilla extract in your storage items. For future reference I would also add that you’ll want lemon juice and cocoa as well.
I look forward to sharing more with you later.
Copyright 2009 Kellene Bishop. All rights reserved.
You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Kellene Bishop.
1.) Screwdriver set - get yourself a decent Craftsman set at Sears, get one of the larger 12+ screwdriver sets not one of the smaller 7 driver sets. You should have a good mix of flathead/Phillips and varying lengths to get multiple jobs done.
2.) Hammer - I am personally partial to the framing hammer.
3.) Set of adjustable wrenches, the three I use the most in order are the 6", 12" and 8".
4.) Socket Set - again go with one of the Craftsman sets...I can't afford Snap-On or MAC tools to be honest...way to expensive (BUT good quality). Craftsman is great for most homeowners.
5.) Pliers - I like needlenose, linemans and slip joint pliers.
6.) Channel locks - I would actually have 2 pairs of these for light plumbing and stuff.
7.) Measuring tape - 25 ft measuring tape with a lock on it will suffice for most jobs.
8.) Level - I have a 2 foot and a 4 foot level and I have been able to tackle most things I needed to.
9.) Cutter - a good quality razor knife that is easy to change the blade on will be worth its weight in gold.
10) Saws - have a decent wood saw, a good hacksaw and a drywall saw and you should have the basics covered.
11.) Stud finder (right here big boy!) - Kidding of course...much more reliable than knocking on the wall trying to find studs.
12.) Speed square - if you gave my grandfather one of these and a hammer he could build you a house.
14.) Tape - duct, electrical, masking and teflon please...
15.) Multimeter - maybe I am a geek but I use mine a LOT. I have the same Radio Shack model I bought about 8 years ago.
16.) Voltage detector - beeps and light up when near AC voltage...don't rely on JUST this but these are REALLY handy.
17.) 5-Way Tool - If you don't know what one of these is Google it and get one...VERY useful.
OKAY!!!! Some people call this a 6 in 1 tool and here is what I am talking about Red Devil 4251 ZIP-A-WAY 6-in-1 Tool. I have always known this as a 5 in 1 but apparently someone thinks there is a 6th use for it ;)
18.) Pry Bar - I have a mini crowbar and a flat bar great for demo and delicate removal of molding when needed.
19.) Wire cutter/strippers - very useful for any kind of electrical work or cutting anything that resembles wire :)
20.) Monkey wrenches - if you do any plumbing you will need a set of these.
This is by no means exhaustive but it is a hell of a start if you are looking to build a tool set.
...that is all.
Alright. You keep being told to store wheat right? But I bet that you’re wondering what the heck to do with it. I do address different ways you can use wheat in a previous article, and one of those ways is obviously bread. Let’s face it. Bread making in our homes is a lost art. I forced myself to learn for three reasons.
1) I knew that if there was an emergency which required me to live off of my food storage, I darn well better learn how to make bread out of all of this wheat I was storing.
2) I needed to find some way to introduce hearty wheat into my diet so that I didn’t put my digestive system into shock when I did start living off of it.
3) Even though I could get away with paying only 99 cents for a loaf of bread occasionally, I knew that if I could make it fresh, it would be sooo much better for me and therefore worth it.
As it turns out, my decision to learn how to make bread was a good choice for other reasons as well.
1) My husband LOVES it, as do the neighbors, my employees, and even me! (Plus, it makes for great gifts)
2) I now have the confidence I need to make it and know that we’ll be just fine surviving on it.
3) I now have a more accurate understanding of what OTHER items I need to have on hand in my food storage. (Go figure. You can’t just make wheat bread with just wheat.)
4) My quest for learning how to make it has led me to develop a KICK BUTT-No-Fail recipe! (I never thought I’d be saying that when it came to bread making?!)
So, I’m going to share the recipe with you today. For those of you who are already pros, I dare say that you’ll find some twists that I incorporate that may be helpful to you. And at the very least, you will LOVE the breadsticks idea. For the record, this bread turns out nice and soft even though it’s 100% whole wheat. It’s often been mistaken as “store bought” bread. (When feeding kids that can be a good thing.)
First, let me just share with you—don’t be discouraged by the methods that I use for making my bread just because you may not have them on hand. I have had ALL of my new-fangled luxuries break down at some point and thus have had to make due with good old fashioned elbow grease. I use a Bosch Universal Mixer and a Nutrimill to make this easy bread making. The Bosch does all of my kneading for me, however, I have used my Kitchen Aid mixer instead of my Bosch, but it seemed to be awfully hard on the motor. You’ve got to have one of the heavy-duty Kitchen Aid mixers if you’re going to make bread in it. Otherwise you’ll have to knead the bread the good old fashioned way—by hand. Also, keep in mind that I’m giving you my recipe based on the use of electricity and such. Obviously, that won’t do you much good if your power is out and you’re camping for a while. Don’t worry. If you begin making bread more regularly “in comfort”, then when it comes time to do it under “less than desirable circumstances” you’ll be able to easily adapt, much better than had you never mastered it.
Kellene’s Kick-Butt Wheat Bread (and her famous breadsticks)
6 cups of warm water (How do you know it’s warm enough or not too hot? If it’s warm enough to bathe a baby in without scolding it, then it’s just fine.)
2 T. “Real Salt”
3 T. of Lecithin Granules
2/3 C of Vegetable oil (you can use apple sauce as a substitute)
2/3 C Honey
2 ½ T. of Dough Enhancer (I use the Magic Mill brand which you can usually find in the grocery stores, but definitely locate in your specialty kitchen stores. You can also use lemon juice as a dough enhancer)
12 to 16 C of wheat flour (I grind my own flour for this recipe each time with my Nutrimill—Yes, you can use white flour if you’d like, but you only need to knead the bread about ½ as long)
2 ½ T of Instant Yeast (I use SAF brand and I store the open package in the freezer or the fridge for years)
2 T. Vital Wheat Gluten (Note: ONLY use wheat gluten if your flour is old or a lesser quality wheat. If you’re using fresh ground wheat or a good quality flour, then you won’t need the wheat gluten.)
Place 9 cups of freshly ground flour in the mixing bowl with the dough hook attached. Then add 6 cups of warm water. Mix on speed level 1 until you’ve got a paste consistency. Turn off the machine and add the yeast, salt, honey, oil, and lecithin granules (and wheat gluten if you’re going to use it). Turn machine back on to speed 1. Begin adding additional cups of flour one cup at a time. As the machine bears down, increase the speed to 2. Continue adding additional flour until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl. I usually use a total of 15 ½ cups of flour.
Note: Here’s the trick. You want to make sure that you do not add too much flour. I like to add just enough so that the dough starts pulling away and that I can handle the dough. This approach, as well as the lecithin granules and dough enhancer, is the reason why my bread turns out so soft. Most folks who make homemade wheat bread add too much flour.
Set your timer and let the Bosch knead the dough for 7 to 8 minutes. Stop the mixer. Add the dough enhancer. Then let the Bosch knead the dough for another 2 minutes (still on Speed 2). Grease your hands and then gently remove all of the dough from the bowl and place it on a greased cutting board in an even rectangular shape. Using a knife, score your dough into 5 evenly spaced sections. Then pinch off each section, form it into an oblong loaf.
Note: Pinch your bread dough, not tear it. Only score your bread so that you can see the 5 sections. Don’t use the knife to actually cut the sections.
Place the loaf in 4 to 5 greased bread pans or you can use non-stick bread pans, depending on the size of loaves you desire. (I use 5 non-stick bread pans, but I still spray them with “Pam.” They should be about ½ to 2/3 full.)
Photo care of Barefoot Kitchen Witch
Place the loaves where they will not be blown on by the air conditioning so that they can rise at room temperature. Cover the pans with Saran Wrap to keep them moist as they rise. (I spray the Saran Wrap with “Pam” on the sides that will be on top of the bread to prevent the dough from sticking to the wrap.) Let the dough rise until doubled. This should be approximately 1 ½ inches above the top of the pan.
When finished rising, place them in a pre-heated 350 degree oven. Bake for 30-40 minutes. When the bread is finished baking, you will be able to tap it lightly on top and have it sound “hollow.” Take the pans out and place them on a cooling rack for about 10 minutes. Then remove the loaves from the pans and cool sufficiently prior to storing.
Special Note: This recipe makes great rolls as well! As a special little trick when I’m hosting a party, I take the dough and roll them into small breadsticks (about 4 -5 inches long). Then I dip the “breadstick dough” into melted butter. Then I place them on a big cookie sheet about an inch apart from each other. I then sprinkle McCormick’s Salad Supreme seasoning generously on top of them and bake them at 350 degrees for 13 to 18 minutes. You will LOVE the taste of these bread sticks!
Copyright 2009 Kellene Bishop. All rights reserved.
You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Kellene Bishop.
Survival Podcast - Solid Values in Firearms for the Survival Minded
by Joseph Parish
When dealing with emergency communications there is one simple item that you really must have and that is a good communications antenna. Many survivalists have asked if there is such a thing as a simple antenna made specifically for shortwave listening. The main concern here is one, which could be transported in a backpack and rigged up in only a couple of minutes. The basic principle here is the option of stringing it up quickly between several trees.
In general, there are usually instructions enclosed with radio receivers, which cover these details, however sometimes the manufacturer fails to include them in the operator’s manual or you may have purchased the receiver used and not obtained the operators manual with it or even worse you may have constructed your own radio receiver from scratch. Either way you have no way to know how to setup an antenna. The short answer to this question is that you can do it either as simply or as complicated as you would like. Several questions that you may initially have to ask yourself are does the unit have an external antenna input or merely a telescopic antenna. Can you locate a suitable ground connection on the back of the radio receiver? This connection is generally located near the external antenna terminals should it be there.
A quick solution to create an antenna that will work fairly well is to run approximately 50 to 100 feet of number 22 through number 30 gauge insulated hook up wire out into the woods. You may possibly suspend it above ground by means of monofilament fishing line. To complete the installation simply tie the far end to the monofilament line, then run it 50 foot away and place a weight on the end and finally toss it over a nearby convenient tree. Next, proceed to pull the monofilament line until the antenna wire is elevated and tight, and then tie it off securely.
Another trick you can try should you be located on a ridge and you are unable to drive a proper ground rod into the soil, is to duplicate the 50 to 100 feet of antenna wire, however this time connect it to the ground connection. Run these wires in opposite directions with the radio receiver located at the mid-point of the wires. This is an effective method if setup properly. If you wanted to get really fancy you could progress from these simple antenna versions to one a bit more complicated and having its own antenna tuner or matcher, but to setup and use a radio receiver under emergency conditions requires something that is very quick and easy to setup. The antenna tuner could perhaps be considered for another article where your communications is centered upon your home, as this would make the tuner more feasible. Should your radio not have an antenna connection in the rear you can still improve your radio reception with the use of an alligator clip and attach the antenna wire to this clip and then the clip in turn to the antenna.
Copyright @2008 Joseph Parish
By Joseph Parish
We all have some sort of an idea what we would take with us if we were going to be stranded on a deserted island well you could look at the concept of survival preparation in the same light. As Y2K approached, I was determined not to take any chances and I was determined not to be forced to live a life of a pauper if events turned to the worst. I went out and purchased a 33-foot motor home just for Y2K. Stocked it properly with various foods including shrimp in the can, crab meat in the can and lobster in the can. As I said, I was going out in style. Several gallons of wine was purchased and stored within the motor home. In addition, I placed the normal array of survival foods and items in it. As the final hours rolled near I filled, the water tanks with fresh water and sat down to watch TV.
Fortunately, nothing bad happened and life went on as before. I mention this so you can get a better idea of what being prepared is all about.
An experienced survivalist or outdoor enthusiasts will fully be aware of what basic essentials they would need to survival should our infrastructure crumble and fall. These ten essential are your basic items. These items cannot be fashioned in the field from materials lying around and the idea that you could be caught without them in an emergency could prove fatal.
Many groups of people have their essential ten lists including the boy scouts, Mountaineering groups, boaters, etc however, in general the list remains very similar. It appears that most of the groups tend to incorporate the same items. Although I submit this basic list, keep in mind that it is not cast in stone. Survivalists must determine for themselves what items they consider important.
1. Whether you are a camper, biker, hiker or whatever a Map has to be considered one of your essential items. Generally the least you should have is a map of the area where you are immediately located. This map should be detailed enough to enable you to locate man-made items such as trails, power lines, unimproved roads, etc., and it should have marked natural features such as hills, streams, rivers hills as well as any other possible terrain that would enable to find your way around.
A U.S Geological Survey Topographical map has just about all of the above features plus more. For get an index to topo maps within your home state contact: U.S. Geological Survey, Map Distribution Section, Federal Center, Box 25286, Denver, CO 80225; (303)
236-7477. A 365 page book titled, The Map Catalog, (Every kind of map and chart on Earth and even some above it), is available from: High Country Enterprise, P.O. Box 746, Saguache, CO 81149; (719) 655-2432.
2. The next item of importance has to be a compass. When you consider that, a map without a compass is really quit useless. I actually have two - one for personal use and one for the BOV. For my personal use, I prefer the liquid filled “Silva" or "Suunto" compasses. These two have straight edges that prove useful when plotting coordinate bearings. Avoid the military style compasses as they have several dangerous downfalls. They are usually much more bulky and do not have a clear base which makes map reading extremely difficult. With both your map and a reliable compass, you can successfully line up the map by lining up magnetic north with the compass and then plot your plot your course.
3. For our third item of choice, we have chosen a flashlight. Make sure that your flashlight does not have an “easy” switch - one that turns on much too easily and causes the batteries to die. I personally use several types of flashlights. I have the LED flashlight run by batteries of which I have taken and purchased rechargeable style batteries. This way they can be readily charged via several different ways. Attach it to the auto cigarette lighter or by way of a solar battery charger. A good trick is not to place batteries into the flashlight until you know you will need it.
My second flashlight is a wind up unit where you crank the handle for several minutes and then the battery ids good for about 20 minute’s or so. Many people remember to bring a flashlight but they completely forget the spare bulb and spare alkaline batteries just in case.
This next item may sound a bit foolish but consider being stuck out in a snowfield and you will appreciate it. It item is nothing more then Sunglasses. These can easily be purchased in the dollars store for you guessed it one dollar. They are cheap glasses but for an emergency, they will work fine. Generally, today the modern sunglasses stop 99 percent of ultraviolet light. The Polycarbonate lenses that have the wrap around design will provide more protection against wind and side glare. In the event that you anticipate a very snowy condition, you may want to consider Glacier glasses. These are generally recommended for snowy conditions. They have polarized lenses with leather side that block out side glare. Be sure to buy some retaining straps at the time you purchase your sunglasses.
5. When preparing to Bug Out always consider extra food and water. The length of the trip determines the amount of water you bring and the temperature and physical demands placed upon your body. Water should be used as needed and never rationed out. This is based upon the theory that if your body requires water, it needs it now not several hours from now! It may be a good idea to maintain water purification tablets in your BOV as this may help you make use of other water sources. In regards to food, you never can go wrong keeping some extra cans of tuna fish in the BOV. If available, you could eat the normal trail food mixes at regularly scheduled intervals to supply the body with energy.
6. The additional clothing, which you bring, is determined by the weather and the time of year. A windy summer may only require only a poncho for rain protection and a light nylon windjammer for possible cold. Once again, if you visit the local “Dollar Tree” you can purchase of package of three parkas for only a dollar. These can be kept permanently in your BOV. I also take a backpack and have my grandson pack emergency clothes in it. The backpack is the left in the van and exchanged once per month. We always maintain a sleeping bag in the van as well as several fleece and wool blankets. The unopened metallic type space blanket takes up very little room and is included in the BOB just for safety measures.
7. Number 7 is calls for matches. I always considered the commercial waterproof matches as a bit on the expensive side but I have another article elsewhere that tells you how to make your own waterproof matches at a fraction of the cost for the store bought ones. I like to maintain a selection of normal strike anywhere matches large selection of throw-a-way cigarette lighters and several of the propane “clickers” in the BOV. There are small quantities of the waterproof matches stored in a waterproof container such as an empty plastic 35mm film container for those dire emergencies. Although I do not have them yet those flint/magnesium bars on key chains are good back-ups should you lose your matches or lighter.
8. We have included a pocketknife as the number eight item. Among other uses, the pocketknife can be used in first aid, for food preparation, and can aid in fire building. As long as you have a knife you can make fire. Striking steel on a flint like rock produces sparks that will catch fire if carefully prepared kindling and tinder is setup properly. A more elaborate version of the pocketknife may contain a treasure of useful tools such as saws, scissors, awls, can openers, tweezers, screwdrivers, awls, etc. Once again an inexpensive version is available in the “Dollar Tree” stores. We have one for every member of the family.
9. A first Aid Kit is essentially a collection of many items usually they contain various band-aids, a bottle of iodine, chemically cold packs as well as personal prescription drugs. No commercial first aid kit is right for everyone; it will be your responsibility to customize your kit to suit you and your family. I have a regular first aid kit case however since I have a miniature pharmacy in it, I have considered going to something a bit larger. A small version with just several bare necessities in it could easily be stored in a BOB by placing the most needed items in a Zip Loc zipper bag so everything is protected from the elements. In addition to the usual collection of gauze pads, band-aids and the Steri-Strips, I have also included items such as spray and wipe on insect repellent, several cans of sunscreen, an assortment of chap sticks, several tubes of antibiotic ointments, Both buffered and non-buffered aspirin, Several packages of over the counter items like Benadryl and Actifed. I have also found the following items to be very useful: a needle (usually contained in the sewing kit), several ace bandages, tweezers, a small needle-nose pliers (Usually contained in the fishing kit) and insect bit remedies like Calamine
10. The last item that I consider to be extremely important in my BOV is a laptop and my selection of survival CD’s. Every time I come across survival information, I place it on a CD and cross-reference it. In the event that I have to leave the immediate area in a hurry, I always have my survival information at the tips of my fingers.
Although not listed in the top 10 items there are several additional items that may truly be needed in your BOV or BOB. These include several rolls of toilet paper wrapped in a plastic bag, an signal mirror of some sort, fifty feet of strong parachute cord, fluorescent tape for marking trails, signal flares and my wife’s all time favorite Duck tape.
You can usually pack your kits and supplies in a number of ways however; I have found that Rubbermaid totes work great. I have written another article on the use of the Rubbermaid totes for BOV’s.
Due to a rather event filled morning today’s show notes are very brief. Today we explore 5 threats that could bring on TEOTWAWKI (the end of the world as we know it), each of these are low probability but high impact events. I will try to fill out the notes later today…
Today’s podcast covers putting together a bug out bag (BOB), also known as the 72 hour kit or three day survival bag. In today’s show we cover things like what goes in a BOB, what type of bag is best to use, the purpose of a bug out kit and more.
Today we discuss,
- The purpose of a 72 Hour Kit - getting to safety not spending three days at home.
- Ideas for food items that keep you nourished on the go and are easy to obtain
- The advantages of a “back pack” over a duffel bag
- Ideas for wet weather and sleeping gear
- My view of what makes a good survival knife
- Rechargeable lighting options
- Making sure you have the ability to purify water
- The value of maps, a gps and a compass
- Why a poncho is not a good wet weather gear option
- Ideas to save space and weight
- Various “hard gear” equipment options
- Methods of self defense that won’t be confiscated by authorities during a disaster
- The value of a simple small tool kit
The list presented in the podcast is by no means complete. If you have ideas and suggestions please leave them in the comments below.
Today we took a couple steps to address her concerns. We got one of those magnetic alarms for the door. It was pretty easy for us to install and makes a heck of a lot of noise. More then enough to wake her (and possibly the neighbors) up if need be. Also picked up one of those door security bars. Stephen had one and I thought it was a slick idea. While the hollow core metal doors at our place aren't ideal (not going to change the door on a rental) the security bar should give an extra few seconds, seconds count a lot.
We walked out of home depot with both off these for about $30. That is a price anyone can afford. Now our door (the only practical entrance) is harder to force in and it will make a heck of a lot of noise. Also the people in our immediate area knowing we have some sort of an alarm is probably not a bad thing.