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Thursday, June 4, 2009

When Disaster Strikes


by Lucy Lockett

We don’t always get a warning before a disaster so isn’t it time YOU got ready? Are you prepared for a civil emergency? Is your family going to survive?

Over the last five years we have witnessed several horrendous natural disasters – Hurricane Katrina, The Tsunami in the Pacific, flooding in China, New Zealand, The USA, England and Europe. Our weather patterns have changed while scientists fight the politicians as to ‘reasons why’ this is happening; we are left having to endure the effects of the aftermath.

It is time to take control of your own security and survival. You need to gather some of the basic essentials and keep them some where that is easy to access in case you need to get out quickly.

A survival kit consists of:

Water – 5 litres per day per person
A gas cooker
Warm clothing
Blankets
Tinned food and an opener
Radio, cellphone, torch, matches or lighter
A pot and picnic set
A tent

This will get you by until help arrives or you know what the next step is to take.

Good Luck.

Original at: http://www.gomestic.com/Emergency-Preparation/When-Disaster-Strikes.8696

Making Emergency Non Maple Flavored Syrup

By Joseph Parish

Maple syrup is derived from sap of the maple tree. It is sweet tasting substance which is often eaten on pancakes, French toast, waffles, or cornbread. It may sometimes be used as ingredients in cooking or baking, candy making or for preparation of deserts. Surprisingly it is also occasionally used for flavoring in the manufacture of beer. Maple syrup was initially used by Native American who instructed the early settlers in its use.

Generally maple syrup is found in the northeastern portion of North America from the sugar maple trees or the black maple. These particular trees have high sugar content within their sap. To process the sap one would boil it in what was designated a "sugar house". This is a building that is louvered near the top to allow the steam to vent outside from the resulting boiled sap. In America the largest producer of maple syrup is the state of Vermont with 450000 gallons per year.

Traditionally, one would harvest maple syrup by tapping through the bark of the tree and letting the sap drip into a bucket. You would then collect the buckets of sap on a daily basis. Production would usually be during the months of February to April. With most maple trees freezing evenings plus warm days are required to induce the sap to flows.

The processing procedure is extremely slow due to the vast sum of water which must boil out of the sap. It takes about 40 liters of maple sap to create a single liter of maple syrup.

Maple syrup as well as maple sugar was prominently used during the Civil War and in the years just prior to the civil war due to the fact that most of the cane sugar or molasses was produced in the south by slaves. During World War II food rationing people located in the northeastern portion of America were generally encouraged to compliment their sugar rations with the use of maple syrup. Several War cookbooks can still be found that were printed to assist the American housewives to use this sugar alternative in their foods.

There are many maple flavored syrups which are imitations. Most of these syrups do not contain any maple syrup at all. In these syrups their primary ingredient is usually corn syrup that is flavored with something called sotolon. They are usually much thicker then the real maple syrup.

I would like to present my own version of non-maple syrup that could be used in emergency situations when no real syrup could be obtained. Below I have listed the recipe for this item.

Ingredients

6 medium potatoes

2 cups of water

1 cup of regular white sugar

1 cup of brown sugar

Procedure

  1. Boil the six medium, unpeeled potatoes in the water

  2. Continue to boil until one cup of liquid is left

  3. Removed the potatoes from the mixture

  4. Continue stirring the liquid until you reach the boiling point once again

  5. Add the white sugar

  6. Add the brown sugar

  7. Continue to boil until they have dissolved completely

  8. Replace the pan on the stove

  9. Store the mixture in a glass jar in a dark location for 1 week

Copyright @2008 Joseph Parish


Original: http://delawarepreppersnetwork.blogspot.com/2009/04/making-emergency-non-maple-flavored.html

What If a Blizzard Came - The making of a Blizzard Survival Bag

By Joseph Parish

Here you are driving in North Dakota in the middle of winter. You have the radio turned on and winter weather warnings are in effect for the complete state. The outside temperature is down around the 10 to 20 degree mark with wind speeds in excess of 40 miles per hour. You have been moving slowly at a snails pace since it is difficult to see ten feet in front of you. No other cars have been sighted for the last 40 minutes.

You approach a curve in the road but the road ice is so thick you begin to slide to the side. You try to compensate for the drift however nothing you do can help you prevent the slide. You bounce off the road and into a ditch. You and your car sit motionless in the snow bank for a few moments because you realize you are stuck there until help arrives.

You manage to push open your car door and make your way out of the car to see what damages have been done and what your next course of action should be. You can see that to try and get out of the ditch is virtually impossible as your wheels are firmly packed with snow and ice. All you can manage to do is spin tires and possibly make your situation worse.

You did not bring a shovel of any sort and even if you had you probably could not shovel your way out of the snow bank. In fact you don’t even carry a safety flare in your trunk for notifying passing vehicles of your predicament. You grab your cell phone to call for help and realize your cell phone battery is totally dead.

You are freezing cold and you know that you will shortly die from exposure. What are you going to do now? You know what you are going to do because you planned well ahead of time by creating a Blizzard Survival Bag.

Reaching over under your seat and withdraw a plastic tote containing a flashlight, a thermal blanket, extra socks, your hand cranked radio, several small containers of canned and dried food, several water purification tablets, an ice pick, a film canister of water proof matches and a candle. You know you have rehearsed this scenario many times before but now its for real.

You empty the contents of the tote on the car seat beside you and survey all the items that was in it. You next take a small can of food and open it and quickly eat it. Using the can you place the small candle in the center of it being certain that it is secure. I recommend tea candles. They are inexpensive and sit low in the can so as not to tip over.

Using the water proof matches light the candle and sit it somewhere that it will be safe. Wrap the nylon thermal blanket securely around you to conserve your body heat. Use your hand cranked radio to maintain checks on the weather status. Should you be thirsty you can easily melt some snow using your food cans and your candle. It can be purified with the use of your water purification tablets.

Should a car be coming by make certain to use your flashlight as much as possible to alert the passing motorist of your situation. As a side note in states like North Dakota it is mandatory that in the wintertime passing motorists stop to see if anyone is inside of a broken down car along the road however don’t take unnecessary chances let them know you are there.

While it is fresh on your mind why not create your own Blizzard Survival Bag. Don't delay until a disaster strikes because then it’s simply too late.

Copyright @2008 Joseph Parish

Original: http://survival-training.info/articles11/WhatIfaBlizzardCameThemakingofaBlizzardSurvivalBag.htm

Save Money, Get Prepared, and Eat Healthier with Intermediate Term Food Storage, by Travis A.

In any emergency or survival situation food is a primary necessity. So naturally there are many discussions and advice here and on other forums concerning food and food storage. There is a lot of great information and products available for long term (10-15 year) food storage. I have read many articles comparing the various MREs available, poured over blog posts about the best freeze dried foods, and watched Google videos on the proper storage of whole wheat grains. Popular vendors such as CampingSurvival.com and other SurvivalBlog sponsors offer freeze dried meals and canned food with extended shelf lives such as the Yoder’s line of products. While these options can be a good investment, the acquisition of a ample supply can pose a challenge to those new to prepping and to families on a fixed budget. It can certainly seem daunting (and perhaps financially impossible) to a newcomer to buy the large amount of food needed to sustain a period of extended crises. And while its nice to have 5 gallon buckets stacked full of red winter wheat, many do not have the equipment or knowledge for preparing and cooking storage foods like wheat, should the need arise. In addition, an important aspect to any food storage program is the regular rotation and use of your storage food as part of your regular diet. The average family exploring preparedness for the first time is not going to make major changes to their eating habits overnight.

Since most sound advice suggests having at least one year supply or food on hand, there is no apparent reason to stockpile foods with a storage life of 15+ years. When properly integrated into your daily diet, foods with a storage life of 1-to-3 years can form a good base for your food storage program. (An excellent resource for determining the storage life of certain foods has been mentioned here before: http://www.stilltasty.com ) One of the best ways I have found to build up a convenient, usable food supply in a cost effective manner is the bulk purchase of rice, pasta, and various spices. Dry goods such as spices, rice, and pastas generally have a shelf life of at least two years when stored properly. These basic ingredients can be combined in different ways to create a foundation for a wide variety of healthy, delicious meals. Additionally, mixing up recipes in advance can make it easy to include them in your daily diet. The principal is based on the popular Lipton and Rice-a-Roni side dishes found in your local grocery store. However, rather than paying $1.25 to $2.00 each, you can make these sides for less than 25 cents when properly purchasing ingredients. Additionally, you do not have the added colors and preservatives typically found in the store bought packages. As an added benefit, the ease of preparation of these prepackage meals makes their use in an emergency ideal. Simply add water and cook them on a gas grill, propane camp stove, or similar heat source. Immediately following a SHTF event, the less time and energy spent on food prep frees one to focus on improving your situation. Below are a few examples of recipes you can make with the dry ingredients:

Chicken Onion:
3-Tbsp Chicken Bullion Base, 3⁄4 Tbsp Minced Onions, 1 Tsp Cornstarch, 1 Tbsp Parsley Flakes, 1⁄2 Tsp Garlic Powder, 1⁄2 Tsp Celery Salt, 1⁄4 Tsp Black Pepper, Mix with 4 oz of pasta or 5 oz or rice. Add 2 1⁄2 cups of boiling water, cook over medium heat until noodles or rice is done. (Add 1⁄2 Tbsp of Evaporated Milk for a creamier taste)

Italian Beef: 3-Tbsp Beef Bullion Base, 1⁄2 Tbsp Oregano, 1⁄2 Tbsp Onion powder, 1 1⁄2 Tsp Minced Garlic, 1⁄4 Tbsp or Basil, 1⁄4 Tsp of Black Pepper, 1 tbsp Parsley Flake, Mix with 4 oz of pasta or 5 oz or rice. Add 2 1⁄2 cups of boiling water, cook over medium heat until noodles or rice is done. (Add 1 Tbsp of Powdered Tomato Paste for an alternative taste.)

Tasty Additions
Use a wide variety of rice (white, brown, wild) and pastas (bow tie, fettuccini, rigatoni) for maximum flavor and texture combinations to help reduce the chances of appetite fatigue. For other flavor variations and extra nutrition add dehydrated carrots, broccoli, peas, or corn. Experiment with the above ingredients or add your own until you find several combinations your family likes. Once you determine a few recipes you like, take out one Saturday and mix up a few big batches. Include everyone for a fun family event. You can package individual servings in Ziploc bags or vacuum seal them for a longer shelf life. As an alternative to individual servings, multiply all ingredients by 20 or more but leave out the pasta/rice. Now you have big jars of your spice mix that you can just scoop from, to mix with your pasta or rice when you are ready to cook it. Just keep track of the proper combination (for example, 1⁄2 cup or spice mix per 6oz of pasta).

These cost effective mixtures can be eaten by themselves, used as a good side dish, or serve as a basis for a full meal. To extend its meal potential and increase nutritional value consider adding fresh vegetables from your garden or your favorite meat for extra protein. I like to roast a whole turkey or chicken a few weekends a month. I simply add the precook turkey/chicken to various combinations throughout the week for a fast, easy, nutritious meal. This type of storage and preparation can fit well with today’s busy suburban life. It is also a good idea to include cans of Tuna, Chicken, or Yoder’s Turkey Chunks, in your food storage for use in your recipes now or post-TEOTWAWKI situation. Canned meats like this generally have a shelf life of 3-5 years. Another good option now or after the SHTF would be to experiment with the addition of fresh sprouts. Sprouts are cheap and easy to grow and add a lot of flavor and nutrition to your dishes. I use the Sprout Garden Kit available over at Ready Made Resources. Broccoli, radish, alfalfa, and bean sprouts are packed with nutrients and the sprouting seeds have a shelf life of 4-5 years.

Acquiring the Ingredients
For the purchase of your ingredients, the best advice is to shop around and buy in bulk. Buying spices off the spice rack of your local grocer is not advisable. Places like Sam’s Club and Costco carry large containers of spices for restaurants. A 6 oz vial of garlic powder might run $3.00 at the grocery store but you can buy a 7 pound bottle at Sam’s Club for only $17.50. One good resource I have found is BulkFoods.com. You can buy a 5lb bag of chicken base for less than $15.00. They also carry Broccoli flakes, dehydrated, carrots, peas, tomato powder and more. Many times they have better pricing than Costco or Sam’s on some items. Northbay Trading also carries dried vegetables in bulk. When making purchases just remember that the bigger quantities offer better pricing. A 50lb bag of rice at Sam’s is only $22.00. Another idea is to search for wholesale or bulk food suppliers in larger cities near where you live. For example, I found a wholesale grocer near me (Leon H. Lewis, in St. Louis, Missouri) where I can buy 20 lb and 30 lb bags of pasta for $10.00. They also carry Parsley by the pound for $5.50 and pound bags or oregano for $3.90. Most of these bulk food suppliers and food manufacturers target schools and institutions but many will sell to the general public.

By pursuing this type of food storage program you can reduce your family’s current food expenses while developing an emergency store of food that you like to eat. I hope this information helps you ramp up your food storage program and save time and money on everyday meals. For more information and tips on bulk food purchases, our gracious host offers the excellent "Rawles Gets You Ready" preparedness course. - Travis A.


Original: http://www.survivalblog.com/2009/04/save_money_get_prepared_and_ea.html

Survival Health—More Reasons to Purify Your Drinking Water now

For a civilized, progressive society, we really have serious problems with our drinking water. You may recall reports several months ago mentioning traces of all kinds of prescription drugs in our water. Not long ago fish were found with traces of drugs in their systems. And where do fish live? In water, of course.

Now the Associated Press is reporting that millions of tons of drugs are finding their way into our drinking water, and they’re not being tracked by the government. This is particularly a problem where pharmaceutical companies manufacture drugs. Supposedly the drug residues are within government standards or they’re not considered serious enough to harm the environment.

I don’t know about you, but I don’t find this comforting or encouraging. Do you want your family to be drinking that stuff? It’s why I recommend getting a top quality water filter and purification system for home use, such as the Berkey systems offered by Lehman’s. The Berkey is able to clean up pond water, so it’s surely adequate for cleaning up your drinking water.

You can get a Berkey water filtration system now by clicking on the Lehman’s logo. Type the key word Berkey in the home page search box to see a page showing both of the Berkey water purifiers Lehman's offers—the Big Berkey or the Berkey Light–then click on the picture of the one you're interested in. You’ll then see a picture of either the big Berkey or the Berkey Light. There you’ll get a more complete description and you can place your order.

Why wait until calamity strikes and you simply can’t live without purified water? If the drug manufacturers and the government won’t see to it that you have clean drinking water, you’ll have to, if you’re going to survive in good health.

Lehman's where old fashioned is always in fashion.