12 Outrageously Simple Tips for Saving Money

12 Simple Tips for Saving Money - Backdoor Survival

As much as I would like to say that money does not matter, it does. The reality is that most of us need money to buy food, put clothes on our backs, and pay for housing, utilities, healthcare, medicine and taxes.  Even families that live 100% off grid and hunt and grow their own food rely on money for one thing or another.

In truth, the way we live our lives and the amount of money we need gets down to a matter of choices.  And that, after all, is what Backdoor Survival is all about: having the knowledge and the wisdom to make the right choice for ourselves and our families without being judged as being right or wrong.

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The Survival Buzz #165

DIY Facial Wipes - Backdoor Survival

Welcome to this week’s Survival Buzz with an update on my own preps and announcements from the Backdoor Survival blog.

The big day is here and as you are reading this, I am probably sweating bullets as I take my Ham Technician License test.  I have taken a lot of practice exams – oh, say 40 or 50 times – and am passing with scores of 30 and 31 out of 35 but still, you just never know.

So, as I write this I am stressed and need to study more so I will keep today’s Buzz brief.

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Review: Life Pod Paracord Survival Kit + Giveaway

Life Pod Paracord Survival Kit Review & Giveaway - Backdoor Survival

I do not know a single Prepper or Survivalist type that is not in love with paracord. Suffice it to say that paracord is to an emergency kit what lavender is to essential oils – a multi-purpose tool for getting you through all types of emergency rough spots.

The only issue with paracord, and really, it is a teensy issue, is that it is bulky and unwieldy to carry around.  Up until now, I simply dealt with it but now I don’t have to.  The nice folks at Life-Pod wanted some feedback on their product so they sent me their Life Pod Paracord Survival Kit to test.  

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How to Set-Up and Master Ham Radio Without Going Crazy, Part 2

How to Set Up & Master Ham Radio Without Going Crazy Part 2 - Backdoor Survival

For the new ham radio enthusiast, setting up the gear can be a challenge.  This is especially true for starter radios that are known to be high on features and design but low on intuitive usability.  Documentation?  Unless you can read broken English written by a Chinese national who has never studied the  language, you are out of luck.

Like many prepper’s, I understand the importance of communication following a disruptive event.  To that end, I took the easy road and purchased a couple of portable Baofeng radios so that I could communicate with the rest of the world when the grid is down.

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Prepper Book Festival 8: After the Crumble + Giveaway

After the Crumble Interview & Giveaway - Backdoor Survival

After taking a break of several months, I am once again reading books in the post-apocalyptic genre.  To be honest, during this break, living and breathing what might happen following a disruptive event was simply too much to deal with.

Shifting gears, I now find myself ready to jump right in and am looking forward to simultaneously be entertained, educated, and shocked by the realities of what could indeed happen if the world and society when to heck.

One of the first books I picked up was this latest entry in the Backdoor Survival Prepper Book Festival 8.

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8 Reasons Old Cookbooks Are Important

8 Reasons Old Cookbooks Are Important - Backdoor Survival

A couple of months ago I was going through some old boxes tucked into the hidden recesses of my garage and I stumbled upon a box of old cookbooks.  Since I learned to cook long before the age of computers, most of my self-taught efforts came by way of these cookbooks.  I started to collect cookbooks in high school and little did I know then what I know now: old cookbooks are important.

As I flipped through some of the pages, it became evident that these old cookbooks are real treasures. 

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The Survival Buzz #164

Fantastic Garden Trellis from Scraps - Backdoor Survival

Welcome to this week’s Survival Buzz with an update on my own preps and announcements from the Backdoor Survival blog.

I don’t know about you, but I am feeling a tremendous sense of accomplishment this week.  First and foremost, I continued studying for the upcoming HAM radio tech license exam next Saturday.  Plus, to get in the spirit of things, I attended a local ARRL chapter meeting.  Straight out, I put myself on the line, and told the members I was going to pass the test next week. 

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10 Reasons to Prepare for an Economic Collapse

10 Reasons to Prepare for an Economic Collapse - Backdoor Survival

It was not that long ago that the country of Greece suffered a devastating collapse of their economy.  At the time, there was a lot of blame game going on but, at the end of the day, it was years of irresponsible and unrestrained spending that took them down.  That, coupled with questionable accounting practices and misstated economic indicators left the Greek citizens befuddled and angry when the reality of a depression hit.

Could the same thing happen here?  Not to be depressing but in going through my own thoughts as I answer the question “What am I least prepared for?”, I realized that it was time for a wake-up call and time to re-evaluate my own preps within the context of an economic collapse.

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Prepper Book Festival 8: Preppers Financial Guide + Giveaway

Preppers Financial Guide by Jim Cobb - Backdoor Survival

A few days ago I read an article about the US stock market and how similar today’s market is to 2008.  The discussion went into a number of indicators that, having been there, done that, made me sit up and feel a sense of relief that I have done everything I can think of to put my financial house in order.

That said, there is always something more to do and I am always interested in learning new ideas for fostering financial preparedness.  With that introduction, today I share the next author interview and book giveaway in the Backdoor Survival Prepper Book Festival 8.

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20 Ways to Use Honey for Wellness and Survival

20 Ways to Use Honey for Wellness & Survival - Backdoor Survival

Rich, golden honey. What is not to like? Just the thought of sweet, fragrant honey and honey bees makes me think of happy times.  That, coupled with it’s long storage life  makes honey a perfect food for the survival pantry.  But did you know that honey has a myriad of other uses, including as a therapeutic ointment that promotes healing?

In this article you will learn all about honey, the various types, its use to promote health and wellness, and other ways to use honey that you may not have thought of. 

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The Survival Buzz #163

Adding Chocolate Kisses to Food Storage - Backdoor Survival

Here we are again with another Survival Buzz and an update on preps as wells and news and announcements.

I experienced a couple of prepping bloopers this week.  But first, on the positive side, I put some chocolate kisses into a “time capsule” that will not get opened for two years.  The idea is to see if chocolate can be stored for the long term.

I put the chocolate kisses in a mason jar with an O2 absorber, then sealed it with my Food Saver jar attachment

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Review: Inflatable Solar Air Lantern for Emergencies + Giveaway (10 Winners!!)

Solar Air Lantern Review - Backdoor Survival

If there is one thing we all should be mindful of when it comes to our emergency kits it is weight.  Let me tell you this: strap more than 20 pounds on your back and unless you are an experienced backpacker or in the Army, you are not going to get very far.

For that very reason, I am always on the lookout for prepping items that are both light weight and useful.  If the usefulness extends beyond emergencies, and the item is value priced, all the better.

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How to Homestead When You Rent: Part 4

How to Homestead When You Rent Part 4 - Backdoor Survival

When someone talks about desire to homestead, it is easy to conjure up a vision of cows out at pasture, a flock of chickens in the backyard, and an acre of organic crops in the field.  At the same time, it is easy to confuse homesteading with living off-grid.  Sometimes the two do meet, but more often that not, they are separate and unique lifestyles of their own.

Something I have been learning in this series, How to Homestead When You Rent, is that homesteading, as much as anything else, is a mindset where you transcend from being a consumer of things, to a creator and fixer of things. 

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Prepper Book Festival 8: The Survival Savvy Family + Giveaway

Survival Savvy Family - Backdoor Survival

Have you or someone you know ever thought “Why prepare? I live in a safe area and nothing is going to happen to me or my family”?

I am 100% certain we all have had similar thoughts at one time or another but then, upon reflection, saw the light.  We now know that being prepared is like having the very best insurance that money can buy.  That is because being prepared means that we will survive should a disaster come knocking on our doorstep.

With that introduction, I would like to present this week’s entry in the Backdoor Survival Prepper Book Festival is The Survival Savvy Family: How to Be Your Best During the Absolute Worst by Julie Sczerbinski.

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Survival Basics: Using Oxygen Absorbers for Food Storage

Food Storage Basics Oxygen Absorbers - Backdoor Survival

When I first started getting serious about food storage, I found myself facing an entirely new vocabulary of food storage terms. It should come as no surprise that one of those terms was “Oxygen Absorber”. At the time, I had no clue as what they were and how to use them.

Oxygen absorbers, also known as O2 absorbers, are a mystery to many. Not a week goes by when I am not asked for guidance as to how to use them. Rather than answer those questions individually, today I am sharing an updated printer on oxygen absorbers with just enough information to get you started on the road to successfully storing bulk foods for the long term.

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The Survival Buzz #162

Learn to clean your essential oil diffuser - Backdoor Survival

Welcome to this week’s Survival Buzz with an update on my own preps and announcements from the Backdoor Survival blog.

How was your week?  I have been busy with a capital “B” in an attempt to complete my many half started projects.  Many of these projects were blog related as I needed to clean up some behind the scenes hosting and performance issues.

On the prepping side, one task that was long overdue was cleaning my three diffusers.  Just looking inside them was creepy in that small concentrations of dried up oils were crusted around the various orifices that allow them to operate at peak performance.

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Gear Review: SunJack Waterproof Lightstick + Giveaway

Review of the Sunjack Waterproof Lightstick - Backdoor Survival

If there is one thing that we all share in common, it is our interest in having adequate light to brighten our way when the grid is down.  Perhaps that is why some of us, no names mentioned, have over two dozen flashlights of all sizes and types.  And that is in addition to chemical light sticks.

With all of these portable light sources, what if you had a powerful source of light that was not only bright enough to light up a room, but was waterproof and rechargeable using any USB source? 

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Prepper Book Festival 8: The Organic Canner + Giveaway

The Organic Canner - Backdoor Survival Prepper Book Festival

Are you a frustrated home canner wannabe like I am?  Whether that describes you to a “T” or whether you are an experienced pro, home canning is one of those skills where you can never have too much knowledge and reference material at your fingertips.  Let me rephrase that: you can never have too much credible knowledge at your fingertips.

With that introduction, let me re-introduce you to Daisy Luther, the author of The Organic Canner.  You might remember Daisy from a previous Book Festival when I introduced her book, The Pantry Primer: How to Build a One Year Food Supply in Three Months

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10 Ways to Stay Calm and Prepare for a Disruptive Event

10 Ways to Stay Calm and Prepare for a Disruptive Event - Backdoor Survival

Over a recent dinner at my place with like-minded friends, the conversation turned to the state of the world, our country, and society in general.  While this was supposed to be a fun evening and a much needed break from long work-days, the conversation became quite sobering as we started to rattle off all of the disruptive events that the four of us prepare for.  Events that may happen tomorrow or events that may never happen.

I began to squirm in my chair as I realized that each of us felt challenged both by the need to keep our preps up (meaning stuff and skills) and the need to live a joyful life. 

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The Survival Buzz #161

Shoo Goo Really Works - Backdoor Survival

Welcome to this week’s Survival Buzz with an update on my own preps and announcements from the Backdoor Survival blog.

What a crazy weather week here in Backdoor Survival land. One day it was sunny and warm, then next was cloudy, rainy and windy.  One thing you learn when you live in Washington State is that the weather can be quite variable from day to day.  Still, when you think about it, here in Western Washington we don’t get much snow and, further, here on San Juan Island we get an average annual rainfall that is 14 inches less than Seattle.

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Prepper Book Festival 8: The New 2000 Hour Flashlight + Giveaway

New 2000 Hour Flashlight - Backdoor Survival

What better way to start off the new “Prepper Book Festival” than with The New 2000 Hour Flashlight?

I say this because from the get go, I was part of the feedback team that Ron used to fine tune the technique in the first edition and get it ready for prime time.  Although I don’t know for sure, my guess is that thousands of copies of the original “Flashlights” is out there and likewise, scores of prepper’s have used Ron’s technique to build their own survival flashlight with a usable beam and battery life of 2000+ hours.

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How to Set-Up and Master Ham Radio Without Going Crazy, Part 1

How to Set Up and Master Ham Radio Part 1 - Backdoor Survival

On April 18th, I will be taking the test to get my Technician Class HAM radio license.  This is something I have been meaning to do for quite some time but honestly?  I got so wrapped up with getting my equipment, two Baofeng UV5 radios, to work that I lost sight of the goal.

To prepare for my test, I have been studying Dan Romanchik’s free guide “The Non-Nonsense Technician Class License Study Guide” which is all good.  But still niggling me was the sense of failure at setting up my HAM radios. 

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BDS Prepper Book Festival 8 Is Here!

BDS Prepper Book Festival 8 - Backdoor Survival

Spring is in the air and along with it brings an all-new Backdoor Survival Prepper Book Festival. It appears that word has gotten out about these BDS book festivals because not a week goes by that an author or their publisher asks me to add their book to the next round.  It is a tough call sometimes, but in each case, I do my best to bring to you an eclectic combination of fiction and non-fiction to fill your book reading and knowledge appetite.

BDS Book Festival 8 is no exception and if anything, is the most varied yet. 

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Managing Blood Pressure With Essential Oils

Managing Blood Pressure with Essential Oils - Backdoor Survival

Something of that concerns every single one of us is how we will deal with health issues in the event modern medicine and western doctors are no longer available to keep us well.  This goes far beyond current health woes because, as you know, stuff happens and someone that is perfectly healthy one day may be stricken with a health-related malady the next.

With that introduction, a few months back I decided to explore whether the use of essential oils could help manage high blood pressure during times of trouble. 

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The Survival Buzz #160

Maintaining Black Berkey Filters - Backdoor Survival

Another week has rolled around and it is once again time for this week’s Survival Buzz.  As always, I want to start off with my preps.

Since the beginning of the year, I have tried to focus on checking one major task off the to-do list each week.  This week’s task was something I have been procrastinating about for a couple of months, namely performing a red-dye test on my Black Berkey filters.  The rule of thumb recommendation is that this should be done every three to six months. 

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Friday Review and Giveaway Blast! Win a 55 Gallon Water Barrel

Ultimate 55 Gallon Water Barrel - Backdoor Survival

Here we go again with another Friday Giveaway Blast!  This week the prize is a fantastic 55 Gallon Ultimate Water Barrel Kit from Emergency Essentials.  I know for a fact that this is something that many of you covet and now you have an opportunity to win one for free!

You can never have enough extra water on hand.  I discovered that when I personally experienced 12 days without running water due to a water leak near the main coming into my house.  Believe me, all of my stored water came in handy. 

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How to Homestead When You Rent: Part Three

How to Homestead When Your Rent Part Three - Backdoor Survival

Most prepper-types are also homesteaders but do not know it.  I say that because we “Homestead in Place” which is a term I defined back in January 2014.  Perhaps others are now using that term; I have not checked.  None the less, it still applies.

By my own definition, to “homestead in place” means that you take what you have – be it a downtown condo, an urban apartment, a suburban tract home or a cottage home in a seaside community – and choose an assortment of traditional homesteading activities to apply to your unique environment.

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BDS Book Festival 7: Prepper Pete’s Gun of a Son + Giveaway

Prepper Petes Gun of a Son - Backdoor Survival

The current Backdoor Survival Book Festival ends today with one of the most unique books yet.  Prepper Pete’s Gun of a Son is a remarkable book on gun safety for kids.  That’s right, an illustrated book on gun safety designed for the young people in our lives.  Trust me, this is a good one!

As always, the author, Kermit Jones, is here to answer some interview questions and also to offer up a copy of his book to one lucky reader.  But first, let me share a little bit about the book itself.

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9 Things To Do to Prepare for Hard Times Ahead

9 Tips to Prepare for Hard Times - Backdoor Survival

Most Prepper types that I know appear to have a common trait: they are good at evaluating risks then moving to mitigate those risks in a nimble manner.  What that means, in somewhat plainer English, is they have the ability to evaluate a situations, make a plan, learn from it, and ultimately act in a responsible manner.

Along those lines, more recently I have done some personal analysis and put more focus on what I call “hard times ahead”.  With my disaster preps more or less in order, I want to ensure that my own household will get through a period of difficulty when, for instance, there is not enough food, work, or money to go around.

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Special Report: The Future is Now – Creating a Second Chance

The Future is Now: Creating a Second Chance - Backdoor Survival

On Saturday, while muddling through my morning coffee and emails, I thought back to a time eight years ago when there was more than one sleepless night spent worrying about our nation’s financial roller coaster.  At the time, both my savings and my personal retirement accounts were heavily invested in the stock market.

Then, on a single day in March 2009, life as I knew it changed.  I lost a major chunk of my investments and retirement savings.

All that is now history.  You may not know this but the following year, this website was created more as a personal catharsis than anything else.

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The Survival Buzz #159

How to Make a Sprinkling Can for Free - Backdoor Survival

Welcome to this week’s Survival Buzz with an update on my own preps and announcements from the Backdoor Survival blog.

This week I continued to focus on my meager gardening efforts.  The weather here as been sunny but cold so I am still wearing my down vest but ahhhhh the sunshine is so nice.  I continued planting lettuce seeds.  Because I am a perfectionist, I pour the seeds into the palm of my hand then pick them up one by one with a tweezers to plant.

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Gear Review: RAVPower 15W Solar Charger with Dual USB Ports + Giveaway

RavPower 15W Solar Charger - Backdoor Survival

I am enamored with all things solar.  What is not to like about getting free energy from the sun?

Perhaps that is why I am always anxious to test every new solar gizmo that comes along.  In doing so, I have come across some great items, but of all of those items, portable solar panels rank right up there at the top of list.  With that said, I have a fantastic new solar charging system to share with you today: the RAVPower 15W Solar Charger with dual USB Ports.

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