About Backdoor Survival & Gaye

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Gaye Levy - Backdoor Survival

When I first started Backdoor Survival, my goal was two fold. First, I wanted to share my angst and concern about our deteriorating economy and its impact on ordinary, middle-class folks such as myself.  And second, I wanted to become a Prepper of the highest order and to share what I was learning (and am still learning) along the way.

Backdoor Survival is now and will always be free.  You might say that this is my way to giving back to our human community.  I do my best to share what I know in the areas of self-sufficiency, prepping, food storage, cooking, health, freedom and more.  Needless to say, this blog has become my passion and although I still work in the 9-5 world, I very much enjoy the wee hours of the night when I can write for my online friends.

There are a few things I would like to say.

First, I will never tell you what to do, just offer my opinion.  It is your responsibility to choose your own path and to make the decisions that are right for you and your family.  From time to time I may offer opinions that you may disagree with.  That’s okay – to me that demonstrates that you you are a thinking person – and I have the utmost respect for that.

Second, you will never ever find ripped-off content or ripped-off photos on Backdoor Survival.  I do not want to dwell on this but having been on the ripped-off side of the equation, I will never do that to someone else.  That said, I am a Featured Expert on Survival Life, a Guest Writer for Wake Up World and a Reporter on Before Its News.  I welcome others to post an excerpt of my material as long as a link back to my original article is included.

Third, I mean it.  This site is now and will always be free.  No donations requested nor accepted.  Of course I do appreciate the commissions I earn from the links, especially Amazon and Emergency Essentials, that are made from my site.  The purchases you make do not cost a penny more than you would pay elsewhere and the earnings pay for my overhead and other costs.

About me personally?

I grew up and attended school in the Greater Seattle area. After spending many years as an executive in the software industry, I started a specialized accounting practice offering contract CFO work to emerging high tech and service industries. Awhile back I abandoned city life and moved to a serenely beautiful rural area on on San Juan Island in NW Washington State.

As you may have noticed, I am a bit of a glamourista but I hope you do not hold that against. me.  My bug out bag includes makeup and other items to make me look and feel good if SHTF.  Please do not criticize this choice that I have made.

Shelly (Sheldon) Ayon - The Survival Husband     Tucker the Wonder Dog - Backdoor Survival

I have been married to Shelly Ayon (aka Survival Husband) for over 45 years.  We met on a blind date and were engaged two days later.  Tucker the Dog is an important member of my family as is my brother Steve and his family, including Karen, Zachary, Allison and Andy.

I am blessed in many ways but mostly I am blessed by the readers who stop by regularly to read what I have to say.

Thank you all from the bottom of my heart.  Feel free to contact me anytime by clicking here:  e-mail Gaye.   Due to the heavy volume of email that I receive, I may not be able to personally respond but I do read everything and appreciate your thoughts, comments and whatever else you wish to share.

Thanks again for your loyalty to Backdoor Survival!

. . . Gaye Levy


About Backdoor Survival & Gaye — 54 Comments

  1. I thank you for opening my eyes to a great many things that I never paid much attention to! You are doing a wonderful job! I am always looking forward to your writings.

  2. Gaye, I found you through your guest post on Alt Market, Nine Healing Herbs You Can Grow At Home. Great info here! Wanted to say thank you and let you know that I’m adding you to my links on my site. Take care.


  3. Hi,

    I enjoy your site and the collaboration that you & George do on many subjects. One thing that I have noticed is that you give a lot of links to products at Amazon.com. Nothing wrong with that and I believe you might have mentioned that you get some small compensation for our purchases there (which is fine). My concern and question is whether you or George have fully investigated the privacy of purchases on said site. You could unwittingly be supporting the profiling of individuals by by legal/gov entities by funneling readers to a single product source.

    Just a thinking point….


  4. Gaye,

    I am retiring as a school counselor ths year and plan to move to San Juan Island. Naturally will live on a budget, but would like to find something cheap (nt over 100K). Do you have any suggestions for me. I’etriedsveral realtors but too much shock at prices. Will you let me kow if you hear o aythig. I’m a minimialist too. hans, Joyce

  5. Hi Gaye: I love your site and am an interested advertiser. I made an inquiry and got a return notice when I tried your email. Hope all is well. please email me and i will resend. Thank you.

  6. Came across your article about sorting your ebooks on Kindle. How do you do that. I am sure there are others like myself that are not savy on how to do that

  7. Hi there Gaye, I’ve been enjoying your site a lot lately. There is SO much great material and you have done a great job putting it together with outstanding content. Thanks so much for the contributions to the survival community. Billy.

    (Thanks for including Tucker’s picture in there too. He’s a cutie!)

  8. I feel lucky I found this site since you are clearly NORMAL. I’ve been researching this subject a lot lately and my wife and I are just starting to get organized for *IF* the SHTF. I just signed up for the mailing list a few minutes ago (and I still have to go home and confirm using my home e-mail) but as I do my research on prepping I will certainly forward anything enlightening I come across.

    Not having had the time (yet) to browse the entire site let me suggest something for your entertainment section: collections of short stories. O. Henry to Kurt Vonnegut to about a zillion others. I’ve been a primitive camper since the late 1970’s and nothing makes for better entertainment for small groups than reading a short story or two out loud while sitting around a campfire. Whole novels are impractical for group entertainment, but there are thousands of short story collections out there.

    • Thank you for the kind words. In a recent article, I mentioned “having the ability to entertain others” as being a useful skill. Reading short stories is a wonderful idea!

  9. Gaye,

    I’m truly impressed with the online resource you’ve created here. My first glimpse of prepping came from watching reality TV, at which point I wasn’t much of a believer. But I also read a great deal of economic news from sites like zerohedge.com. It’s become more and more clear to me that the skills you’re compiling on your site are things that we all are going to need in the not too distant future. Thank you for the time and effort you put into this. It’s truly appreciated. 🙂


  10. Thank you for providing a glimpse of your intended prpose for Backdoor Survival. Your About link is refreshingly enlightening. I am looking forwrd to reading whaat you know and what you share regarding SHTFT survival. I pulled your link from BIN and my first click to read was on About. I have been a prepper since the 60’s.

  11. Gaye,

    I’ve been reading your site for several months after finding it through Modern Survival Blog. I finally came to your About page to read a bit more about you. What a great story. Thank you so much for all the hard work you put into this great resource. And I love the picture of Tucker. He looks pretty tough.


  12. You have put a lot of good information on backdoor survival Gaye and we are thankful for that. I think i do not only speak for myself when i say that i used many of your tips from this blog and helped me tremendously. Keep rocking.

  13. I’ve subscribed and am trying to print your free book Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide, but every time I click on it, the sign up page comes up and so it won’t let me print the book. How do I get past that?

  14. Hi Gaye,
    Thanks so much for your great survival, prepper website. My husband John and I are seniors, living in Tucson, Arizona on a budget, but your site has so many useful resources, especially on food and water and your essential lavender oil article. Your article on saving cash was great, I’m going to save coins in coffee cans. I’m following you on Pinterest.

  15. Love this site. Have made some of the Miracle Salve & I call it my Magical Miracle Salve.
    I was raised by my granny who took care of me from the time I was 5 (she was 59)then, lived to be 84 (was b. 1884) so I ended up being a very lucky kid. She was also the neighborhood witch doctor. Don’t know if you’ve ever heard of something called ‘antiphlogistine’, which held a prominent place in her medicine chest. Believe it’s chief ingredient is caolin clay and it’s now only available from veterinary suppliers. I have a 5# can in my closet right now. It will heal a boil like you would not believe. You put a small amount in a can or heat proof container, put the containr in hot water to heat it, then smear it between 2 pieces of clean white cloth. Don’t put it directly on the boil. Fabulous drawing properties ~ bind cloth on boil as warm as person cal stand it. Do this for a couple of days and magically the core of the boil will appear on the surface where it can be lifted off. Sounds outrageous but I recall my Dad having pneumonia and refusing to go to hospital. She cut off sleeves & collar from a shirt, smeared the stuff (it looks like putty) all over that ‘vest’ and did that daily for about a week and Dad recovered with no ill effects.

  16. Thank you so much for your website & all of the information and inspiration it provides! You are a an absolutely beautiful person and I very much look up to you ❤❤❤

  17. Gaye is there any way to get a copy of your e-book? I don’t have a kindle and don’t want a kindle. If the SHTF I won’t have the need for it and for that reason I don’t want to spend the money. I would be more than happy to pay for a hard copy.


  18. Love this web site constantly looking us new ideas especially about herbs and making creams or lotions.

  19. Excellent stuff here Gaye.
    I love the fact that you don’t rip off information and just throw it on your website. With so many poor blogs out there that post up terrible content or even worse completely copied content, it is great to see what you have standards and that you hold yourself to them.

    Thank you 🙂

  20. Is your Yorkie the GIANT size or standard size?
    We have a GIANT Yorkie that weighs 17 pounds!
    Coarse hair, all muscle, all dog.

    • Tucker the Dog is 7 1/2 pounds. He was supposed to be a runt topping 4 pounds LOL.

      I am so happy with my little pal. He has longish legs and is very muscular which makes him a perfect trail dog. He is totally trained off leash and has a “job” which involves carrying his tiny tennis ball down the trail, dropping it from time to time so he can sniff and be a dog. A 7 mile hike in the rain and muck is no big deal.

      We try to do a 1 to 3 mile hike daily. It gets both of us outdoors and me especially, a break from sitting at my desk in front of a computer.

  21. Outstanding info. Please send info on how to buy hard copy Emergency Food Buyers guide to my email. Many Many Thanks Linda

  22. Hi Gayle.
    I read an article you wrote about survival meds. You are correct that most meds are stable for much longer than the expiration date. In fact, ” old” or expired drugs from most hospitals go back to a company and are repackaged and sold in Mexico.
    Some drugs are unstable. NTG does get old. It will still help but the effectiveness will be limited. Anything liquid has the potential to go bad. I clearly would not use old insulin.
    But again, most medications are stable for many many many years past their expiration date. Since these drugs do have expiration dates, most pharmacists will not likely tell you this information due to their personal liability. We all know people go to doctors and pay them money, so they aren’t going to tell you either.
    Sign me
    An old hospital nurse.

  23. Thanks for all the information. What a great site!! I’ve been glued to the computer reading a blog or conversation following the Miracle Healing Salve recipe. I’m new to Essential Oils and living in Arizona, having troubles with the consistency of making a pain cream. A friend made me some and it was always fine, but the brand of Coconut oil I got at Sam’s club must be different and that melts immediately and is always liquid unless refrigerated. Then you have to scoop out with fingernail or spoon. Our home is kept at 79 during the summer, so I know that is why it is melting. Will adding the beeswax make it more solid like a hand cream/lotion?

    • Yes, the beeswax will solidify the coconut oil but it will still be a bit “gushy”. You can add even more beeswax to increase the firmness of your salve or lotion. It really becomes a matter of preference.

      As you have discovered, coconut oil (any brand) will liquefy at 76 degrees. It does get a bit messy! What I do is scoop some into a small mason jar and put that small amount in the fridge. The rest stays in the tub until I need to add more to my mason jar.

  24. Gaye, you have a short wave liciense, and I would like one. But I have to toke a test to get started and I have not been able to find a Ham down here in Ecuador to administrate the test. Can you get me in touch with other Hams that have contacts down here. There should be someone somewhere in Ecuador. Please give me emails and /or phone numbers. my phones look like in the states. mn and tx..

    Help……. garry

  25. iam 80+/for the last 70 years i developed interest in homoeopathy and alternative medicines and father mullers from mangalore inspired by my father who died in 1983 and i relive those days when i read your articles. i also wanted to learn ham radio but ccould not be able to learn morse code for want of guidance. however i would like to know how to get over this impediment

  26. I think you should totally carry makeup and other items to make you look and feel good if SHTF! After all a huge part of survival and preparedness is keeping your spirits up, and if that keeps your chin up, then so be it.

    Its no different than someone keeping a Bible, book of favorite poetry, or in my case a Harmonica, to give them that extra drive to stay alive!

    Keep up the great work.

  27. love the article on diarrhea, in El Salvador{where I have surfed since sine 85, and moved to in 1994} we have a OTC pill from a great little laboratory Lopez labs called Intestiomicina, about 25 cents used to be I carred these woth ,me all over the world for years I dont do pills, these I will do depends severity and where ytou are thanks for your tips in Sleuth and LOVE the Yorkie, I had one 8 years he died in the 2001 earthquake I got in my door way he didnt make it

  28. Gaye,

    Would like to bookmark your site but just cannot justify it. The site is bloated and loads slowly, not my computer. Your site also has tons of malware/adware that secretly loads in the back round. Fortunately, I have good protection. It’s a shame. You do have some good information available.

    • I absolutely have no malware. I know that because I pay Sucuri a hefty monthly fee to monitor and scan my site every few hours. Yes, there are ads. Sorry if you are offended by them but honestly, I work very hard on this site and provide this information for free.
      I am able to do so because of the ads.

  29. found you when looking into learning shortwave radio …if i looked as good as you would pack makeup ,too
    busy as finally ready to build small efficient shelter so I can be on site for future prepping projects, and let son handle house in the city
    thanks for this wealth of research

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