Backdoor Survival Holiday Gift Guide for Preppers


With the onset of the holiday season, it is time to begin thinking about how we are going to spend both our precious time and money to ensure that we make the most of the spirit of the season.

In my own household, things are a bit up in the air.  Although our tradition is not to exchange gifts, spending quality time with each other is most definitely a tradition.  Rain or shine (which is very rare in Western Washington this time of year), we take a walk along the beautiful shoreline of San Juan Island and spend hours in front of the fire reading, playing board games, and sipping good wine. 

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12 Months of Prepping: Month Eleven


As we enter month eleven of 12 Months of Prepping, it might be easy to become complacent and  decide to set aside this month’s preparedness tasks until some other, more convenient, time.  After all, if you are following along in accordance with the calendar year, there are family gatherings and holiday preps to attend to.

Please do not slough off and let that be a deterrent to the task at hand.  Prepping is a lifestyle and a commitment to preparedness, courage, optimism, and family values.

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The Survival Buzz #144


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

The wild goose chase for misplaced preps continues.  First, I could not locate a small tin that holds my pocket survival kit.  Why is my pocket survival kit in a tin and not my pocket?  Too much stuff with some of it not really practical given my geographical location.  Let me give you an example.

These are just some of the many items in my current pocket survival kit.

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22 Powerful Uses of Frankincense Essential Oil

22 Uses of Frankincense

When it comes to essential oils, I believe practical and anecdotal uses are those that can be relied upon to deliver the best results.  And so it is with one of the most powerful and versatile oils available, Frankincense.

I do not say this lightly because truth be told, I initially shunned Frankincense, or “Frank” as it is called, because I thought it both exotic and expensive.  Slowly, though, I began to recognize it’s value especially when it comes to skin and wound care and its remarkable ability to relieve inflammation and pain.

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Book Festival 7: The Ultimate Situational Survival Guide + Giveaway


It is always a joy to start anew with a new slate of books in an all-new Backdoor Survival Book Festival.  This week is no exception as we roll out the first book in Book Festival 7, The Ultimate Situational Survival Guide: Self-Reliance Strategies for a Dangerous World by Robert Richardson.

As an experienced prepper in my own right, it takes a lot to impress me when it comes to the plethora of survival guides currently on the market.  It seems as though a new book appears daily and although many are excellent, an equal number represent a rehash of material that has been presented in hundreds of other books, websites, and government publications.

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The Five Most Shared Articles on Facebook


Love it or hate it, the social media is something every blogger must pay attention to.  With that in mind, the other day I was curious about the most popular Backdoor Survival social media and Facebook shares.  Much to my surprise, I found that there were five articles that collectively have been shared over 30,000 times!

Holy smokes.  There is a lot of sharing going on!

Today I bring these top five most shared articles out of the archives so that you can enjoy them too.

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Are You Guilty of These Prepper Mistakes?


Webster defines an expert as a person “who has a comprehensive and authoritative knowledge of or skill in a particular area”  That being said, when it comes to preparedness, is anyone ever really an expert?

Let’s be realistic. Every prepper, myself included, was a novice at one time or another.  Along our journey, we have consulted books, websites, blogs, and various government publications in our quest to learn abut preparedness in general and the prepper lifestyle in particular.  Were any of the indivdual authors of these sources experts? 

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The Survival Buzz #143


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

This week has been a busy one as I got caught up on some reading in preparation for the newest Book Festival.  Although it shouldn’t be, reading preparedness books and survival fiction has become a guilty pleasure; guilty only because it takes time away from actually doing something.

This week I made my first batch of healing lotion bars.  While they look beautiful and do a better-than-wonderful job of moisturizing, they are not yet ready for prime-time. 

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Backdoor Survival Book Festival 7


Today I am thrilled to announce the newest book festival in the Backdoor Survival lineup: Book Festival 7.  Once again, I am bringing you an amazing assortment of books and authors plus giveaways across the board.  As the seventh book festival in the series, I have tried to bring together an eclectic selection of books including fiction, non-fiction, instructional guides, and books for children.

Before I start, let me give you a brief run down on Backdoor Survival book festivals and how they work.

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16 Tips for Coping Without Running Water


Every prepper worth their salt stores water and lots of it.  Not only that, they store one, two, three or more ways to purify water.  That is all well and good because you never know when a disaster or other disruptive event may occur and those water resources will be called upon for drinking, cleaning, hygiene, and sanitation purposes.

Recently, my number came up and I was the one without water during a short term, personal water apocalypse.  Now really, that may be a bit dramatic because I was simply without running water. 

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Propane for Preppers – Part Four


In the series Propane for Preppers, you have learned about filling one-pound propane cylinders. But what about refilling 20 pound tanks from, for example, the large tank you lease from the propane company?

In this article, you will learn about refilling those 20-pounders and also, how to safely store any size propane cylinder for the long term.  We also cover carbon monoxide and oxygen starvation.

Propane for Preppers Part Four is the next installment in the series written exclusively for Backdoor Survival by my friend Ron Brown, who has taken considerable time to put together a comprehensive tutorial for you. 

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The Survival Buzz #142


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

The big news on the home front is that after 11 days without running water, things are almost back to normal.  I say “almost” because we had a toilet failure when the water came back on. Expect the unexpected right?  As I mentioned last week, during these 11 days we had plenty of stored water plus an unlimited supply of raw water available via pump right outside our front door.  

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16 Creative Food Storage Tips

16 Food Storage Tips for the Space Challenged Prepper

Let’s face it.  There is never enough room to store your emergency food.  Big house, small house, apartment, condo, or RV; regardless of the size of your home, it is human nature to fill it up.

To add to our woes, with food storage there are special considerations. When we couple the lack of storage space with the need to be mindful of the six enemies of food storage (temperature, moisture, oxygen, light, pests and time), storage issues compound exponentially.

Today I bring back an article I wrote awhile back.

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Pandemic Readiness: Understanding and Preparing For Ebola


For the past couple of weeks, I have been writing and re-writing an article on finding calm in a sea of Ebola.  The first draft was written over two weeks ago and to be honest, as much as I tried, I simply could not get it to gel.

So much has been written already.  Some is good and some is not.  That said, I feel that prepper’s, as a group, are probably feeling a bit of Ebola-fatigue.  Now I hear noises that the main stream media is shuttering news of Ebola as it is spreading to individual communities. 

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Slow Cooking with the Amazing Wonder Oven


In the pursuit of self-sufficiency, Prepper’s are always looking for innovative ways to cook food.  Part of that comes from our desire to eliminate our dependency on fossil fuels and part, to be quite honest, has to do with the process of cooking itself.

Does it come as any surprise that some of the most popular preparedness and homesteading websites feature cooking and recipes?  We all love to eat and eating for the most part, requires cooking.  In my own household, in addition to a gas stove-top, I use a charcoal and wood-burning Volcano stove, an EcoZoom rocket stove that burns biomass, and two Solo Stoves

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Six Preparedness Tips for the Mobility Challenged


If you have ever had an injury that limited your mobility, you will understand why knowing how to deal with mobility challenges following a disaster is important.  A sprained ankle, a broken leg, a fractured arm; all of these can severely restrict your ability to dig your way out of or evacuate in the aftermath of a disaster.

These temporary disabilities are annoying and inconvenient at best.  Now put yourself in the shoes of an individual with a permanent disability; someone who requires a walker, a wheelchair, crutches, or a scooter to move around.

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The Survival Buzz #141


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

This week I am going to keep things brief.  As the Backdoor Survival Facebook followers know, I am going through a water apocalypse.  The short version of the story is that we have a leak in the line between our home and meter.  We became aware of this on Monday and have been without running water ever since.

The good news is that we found the leak. 

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Summer/Fall 2014 Book Festival: The Liberty Dying Series + Giveaway


Today I share the final author interview and giveaway in the Summer/Fall 2014 Backdoor Survival Book Festival. I am sure you will agree that there have been some terrific books in this round and that we have all learned from the insights of the many authors that have been featured.

This week, Kelli Otting, the author of two books in the Liberty Dying Series, is here to answer our interview questions and to offer both of her books as a giveaway.

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101 Low Cost Items to Barter When the SHTF


I would be preaching the choir if I told you that it is wise to gather extra supplies that you can use for bartering in a post-collapse world.  The issue for many, however, is that their budget allows no room for extras.  Finding funds for long term personal preps, let alone daily needs can be an ongoing challenge.

Let’s face it. We all know that the middle class is disappearing.  Food and health care costs are up and even those with comfortable nest eggs are finding that their funds are rotting, earning virtually no interest and suffering the ravages of inflation.

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12 Months of Prepping: Month Ten

12 Months of Prepping Month Ten

As I do each month, I would like to begin month ten with a little pep-talk on preparedness.  We all know that power outages, wildfires, storms, floods, and other disasters can happen anywhere at anytime.  Although first responders do their best when it comes to mobilizes their resources to assist victims, if the disaster is major, there will be a lot of families in need of assistance.

Wouldn’t it be better to rely on your own resources instead?

Being an optimist, I can only assume that if you made it this far in the 12 Months of Prepping Series, you are well on your way to being self-sufficient in an emergency. 

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Ebola As Biological Warfare

ebola as biological warfare

Before I begin, let me put this out there.  Ebola is most assuredly a deadly virus but I am not afraid nor am I in fear of the virus itself.  I have prepared the best that I know how and will do what needs to be done to isolate myself if Ebola moves into the neighborhood.

Now that we have put that aside, I will tell you what I do fear:  Biological Warfare.  That scares the heck out of me.

At the risk of being overly dramatic, today I share another aspect of Ebola and other potential pandemic agents. 

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The Sunday Survival Buzz #140


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

Honesty counts, right?  This has not been the best of weeks for me personally.  Perhaps the hard drive failure before my trip was an omen because three days into my vacation, I experienced an additional hard drive failure in my backup computer.  Only a prepper would take two computers and an iPad on vacation, right?

Long story short, I was able to keep in touch but the process and the experience was stressful. 

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Summer/Fall 2014 Book Festival: Countdown to Preparedness


Today I am thrilled to welcome back Jim Cobb for another interview and giveaway in the Summer/Fall 2014 Backdoor Survival Book Festival.  This week we are featuring Jim’s popular book, Countdown to Preparedness: The Prepper’s 52 Week Course to Total Disaster Readiness.

So what is it that I like so much about this book?  In classic, Backdoor Survival style, Jim guides you through the steps to becoming a full-fledged prepper in just 52 weeks. Each chapter represents a single week with a summary page of assignments at the end of each week. 

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DIY Antiviral Sanitizing Spray: When Hand Sanitizer is Not Enough


Although news of Ebola has been dominating the headlines, there is currently another nasty outbreak circulating the United States. Since August, enterovirus D68 (EV-D68) has caused clusters of respiratory disease in the US with over 690 people affected.  As of this writing, five children have died.

This is not something to take lightly and is reason enough to start doubling up on the frequency of hand washing and the use of hand sanitizers. This includes adults, of course, but also children who seem especially  at risk.

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