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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DIY Emergency Lights from Solar Yard Lights

DIY Indoor Emergency Lights - Backdoor Survival

When it comes to emergency lighting, flashlights and lanterns rule.  The problem, however, is that they require a power source, be it batteries, propane, or some other type of fuel.  There are candles, of course, but candles do eventually burn out, plus, in some environments and especially around children, candles can represent a safety hazard.

The option of choice, for many, is solar lighting.  Indeed, I have a SunBell that gives off a lot light and is easily recharged, even on a cloudy day.  That marvelous piece of gear comes at a price though. 

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BDS Book Festival 7: Rebellion in the Northwoods + Giveaway

Rebellion in the Northwoods - Backdoor Survival

Can you believe that there are just two books remaining in the Backdoor Survival Book Festival 7?  Where does the time go?  It seems as though it was just yesterday when I was contacting authors and publishers to generate interest and ply them with interview questions.

Today’s book is from encore author, Chris Bostic, who you may remember from Fugitives of the Northwoods.  This second book, Rebellion in the Northwoods, picks up where “Fugitives” left off and is even more outdoorsy than the first. 

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DIY Simple Salve: An All Purpose, All Natural Ointment and Carrier Oil

DIY Simple Salve - Backdoor Survival

It has been a year since I first proposed that you ditch the petroleum jelly in favor of a more natural DIY salve.  At the time, I named the salve I came up with “Plain Ole’ Salve”.

During the ensuing year, I have turned to this easily made salve over and over again.  Not only is it a superb moisturizer, but because it is fragrance free, it has become the perfect base for all of my many essential oil concoctions.

Making your own Simple Salve is a cinch and it only takes a few minutes using just three ingredients.

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The Survival Buzz #158

Getting to Know the Aerogarden - 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 my efforts turned to gardening.  I am a huge fan of fresh summer flowers but with such limited space, I hate to give up what little sun I have to flowers when fresh tomatoes beckon.  One thing I do have, however, are lots of hydrangeas. We had a sun break so I took the shears and deadheaded old blooms. It just felt good.

After that, I cleaned out a bunch of tomato pots and readied them for some fresh compost and a layer of additional soil. 

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Another Free Food Friday: Win a Legacy Foods Breakfast Bucket

Win a Legacy Breakfast Food Bucket - Backdoor Survival

Friday has rolled around again; where does the time go?  It seems like yesterday that I was writing the Survival Buzz.  Anyway, today I am thrilled to let you know that Backdoor Survival sponsor, Buy Emergency Foods, is back again with another “Free Food Friday” giveaway.

This time around, the prize will be a 120 serving Legacy Foods Breakfast Bucket valued at $230.  This fantastic food bucket includes a Multi Grain Cereal Mix, Maple Oatmeal with Brown Sugar, Strawberry Creamy Wheat, and Old Fashioned Pancake Mix. 

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How to Build a Simple Faraday Cage for EMP Survival

How to Build a Simple Faraday Cage for EMP Survival - Backdoor Survival

Of all of the reasons to prepare, one that we all need to take seriously is the possibility of a catastrophic EMP, or electromagnetic pulse. This is a frequent topic in many post-apocalyptic novels and something that most of us are aware of, even if we do not completely understand the science.

As I wrote way back when in the article Prepping for an EMP and Solar Flares:

To be blunt about it, an EMP, if large enough, would affect the entire planet.  In an instant, civilization as we know it would change as we get swept backward in time by a century or two.

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BDS Book Festival 7: Preppers History and the Cultural Phenomenon + Giveaway

Preppers History and the Cultural Phenomenon - Backdoor Survival

Today I share the next author interview and giveaway in the Backdoor Survival Book Festival 7.

Lynda King, the author of Preppers: History and the Cultural Phenomenon, is here to answer the Book Festival  questions and of course, to award one lucky reader with a copy of her book.

You will find this book to be a fascinating timeline of survivalism and modern day prepping.  If you are a history buff, and even if you are not, you will enjoy the walk through time. 

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10 New Steps for Living a Strategic Life

10 New Steps for Living a Strategic Life - Backdoor Survival

When it comes to living a preparedness lifestyle, from the get go I have focused on what I like to call “prepping for the rest of us”.  To me, this has always meant embracing survival strategies that transcend the weird, the strange and the off-the-wall.

The focus is and has always been prepping for ordinary folks who simply want to reduce their dependency on others, regardless, or in spite of, the woes created by Mother Nature, big business, and, sadly, the government and its political machine.

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The Survival Buzz #157

Understanding How to Treat Water in An Emergency - Coming Soon - Backdoor Survival

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

I spent the last week in Arizona taking care of some personal business.  That left me little time for preps but I still managed to take delivery of an additional 55 gallon water barrel.  After going 12 days without running water, I felt it prudent to double up on stored water.

Speaking of water, I have been working on setting up a live webinar on understanding the in’s and out’s of treating water in an emergency. 

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The Nitro-Pak 72 Hour Survival Kit Review

Nitro-Pak 72 Hour Emergency Kit - Backdoor Survival

Let’s face it.  No matter how much we hope we will never have to evacuate the comfort of our homes, there is always a possibility that circumstances will require that we gather our emergency supplies and leave on a moment’s notice.  Alternately, when a disruptive event occurs while we are away from home, we want to be prepared with whatever we need to get back home safely.

These days, everyone on the planet is telling us that we need a well stocked bug-out-bag, or go-bag, with enough gear to get you by for at least 72 hours. 

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How to Homestead When You Rent: Part Two

How to Homestead When You Rent Part 2 - Backdoor Survival

According to my research, the term “Homestead” was first used in the United States in the 1860’s.  More specifically, in 1862 a law was passed that offered for free up to 160 acres to any family who paid a registration fee, lived on the land for five years, and cultivated it as a farm.  A similar act was passed in Canada in 1872.

According to Wikipedia, the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 ended homesteading with the exception of Alaska, where homesteading on public lands was allowed until 1986.

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BDS Book Festival 7: The Perseid Collapse Series

The Perseid Collapse Series by Steve Konkoly - Backdoor Survival

It is time to shake things up with Backdoor Survival Book Festival 7.  This week we are going to dispense with the interview and head almost directly into the giveaway.  Steve Konkoly, the author of The Perseid Collapse series of post-apocalyptic fiction, is giving away two sets of personally signed copies of all three books.  That means two winners!

You might recall that Steve was part of the Spring 2014 Book Festival and again as part of the Summer 2014 Book Festival.  He is an interesting guy and you are going to want to go back and read his two interviews.

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20 Comfort Foods for the Survival Pantry

20 Comfort Foods for the Survival Pantry - Backdoor Survival

For better or for worse, our lives are full of stress.  The weather, our jobs, the economy, financial woes and poor health can all contribute to stress.  In addition, for most of us, the biggest stress is simply that there are not enough hours in the day. Add prepping and learning new skills to the mix and life can get dicey.

Whatever the reason, many of us are under a relentless cloud of stress that never lets up.  We find ourselves enveloped by an undercurrent of tension that exists as we go about our day, even during normal times. 

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The Survival Buzz #156

Happy Valentines Day from 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 my preps were so memorable that I forgot what they were.  Seriously.  The reality is that I spent a good deal of time maintaining the status quo.  No one ever said this preparedness stuff was easy so just like you, I put one foot forward each day and do what I can to prevail.

Four things of note:

I continue to make bar soap from both scraps of half used bars as well as from Kirk’s castile soap. 

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Free Food Friday: Mountain House Emergency Food Kit

Mountain House 48 Hour Meal Kit - Backdoor Survival

There is something abut Friday’s and Giveaways!  As I announced at the beginning of the year, Backdoor Survival has recovered from what I like to call “giveaway burnout” and is working diligently to bring you fantastic new giveaway items that will fill your survival and prepping cupboard for free.

This week is a reader favorite, free food.  More specifically, two 48 Hour Emergency Meal Kits  from Mountain House have been reserved for one lucky Backdoor Survival reader.  These kits are brand new to the Mountain House product line with each providing enough food to provide one person with 2,100 calories per day.

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