Wednesday Potpourri: A Pot of Beans and October Musings

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deskOnce again, my desk runneth over.  Between the scraps of paper, post-it notes, and emails flagged for follow-up, I am getting buried.  It is time to clear the decks and bring you up to date on some of the latest musings from the desk of SurvivalWoman.

Cranking up the pot of beans

Fall has definitely arrived along with the cool, damp weather.  On nights like this, the perfect meal is a big bowl of baked beans and a hunk of homemade bread. As I was going through my article on cooking beans, I noticed that the details outlining how to cook the beans after they are soaked went missing in action. Oops.

Somewhere along the way those details disappeared but they are now back. So if you need a refresher course on cooking beans, be sure to go back re-read the article Survival Woman learns to cook dried beans and you should too. But if you just want an updated cooking chart, take a look at the chart below as well as the new page, Let’s Cook Some Beans!

Dried Bean Cooking Chart
Type Soaking Time Regular Cooking Time Pressure Cooking Time
Adzuki none 45 – 50 min 15 – 20 min
Black (Turtle) overnight 45 – 60 min 15 – 20 min
Black-Eyed Pea overnight 1 hour 10 min
Chick-Pea overnight 1 1/2 – 2 1/2 hour 15 – 20 min
Fava overnight 45 – 60 min not recommended
Kidney, Red overnight 1 – 1 1/2 hour 10 min
Lentil, Red none 20 – 30 min 5 – 7 min
Lentil, Green none 30 – 45 min 6 – 8 min
Lima overnight 60 – 90 min not recommended
Lima, Baby overnight 45 – 50 min not recommended
Mung overnight 1 – 1 1/2 hour 8 – 10 min
Pea, Split none 35 – 40 min not recommended
Pinto overnight 1 1/2 hour 10 min
Soybean overnight 3 hour 15 min
White overnight 45 – 60 min 4 – 5 min


Pursuing the Dream

What more can I say? In spite of the sorry state of our planet our economy and our government, I am still a believer in dreams. And one long term dream of my friend George is to own an airplane. So here we go – I want to publicly congratulate George for fulfilling this dream and wish him many happy flights as he sails amongst the clouds!George - dadsplane Small

To Shoot or Not To Shoot

I had quite a bit of email following Monday’s article, If SHTF, Could You and Would You Shoot Someone?.  Many readers shared some tips.  Here are couple that I would like to pass on:

From Don:

“Unless you live in a very small town, you really need to have a concealed carry permit and know how to use your weapon! As a journalistic research exercise, please visit a police dispatch center near you and listen to what goes on in your town for one shift. You will be shocked beyond belief! “

And From Sam:

“A paint ball marker/gun is a good weapon.  If you use the rubber or solid bullets these would be enough to incapacitate a person long enough for him to be suitably taken care of.  There are a great variety of rounds that one can get for these guns including pepper spray rounds.  Anyone shot with a paintball can attest to the pain especially when shot at closer range.”

Survival Top 50!

Holy Moly!  I recently learned that Backdoor Survival debuted on the Survival Blog Top 50 in position 29.  We then dropped to #32 but that’s okay; it is still very cool.  Thank you to all of my loyal readers – you made this happen and for that I am grateful.

Recommend Site:  Survival Common Sense

I recently had an opportunity to chat with Leon Pantenburg who has a blog and website at Survival Common Sense.  His website is about proven and tested common sense survival techniques that anyone should learn when living in urban areas or wandering about in the wilderness.  According to Leon, using your common sense to survive any calamity can change a dangerous situation into a mere inconvenience.

Leon graciously offered his advice and assistance in teaching me how to build and maintain a fire.  Yep, I admit it.  If there is one thing I struggle with it is maintaining a camp fire.  Jeesh.  Since talking with Leon and learning some of his tricks, I am happy to report that I have made great progress with my fire making skills.  Check out this article Survival Kit Necessity: How to Make Charcloth.

Speaking of starting a fire . . .

I have thus really neat EcoZoom stove sitting in my backyard waiting to be used for cooking.  Alas, as I said, my fire-making skills are not so good.  I was finally able to get the stove going using biomass (twigs and pine cones) and will be sharing my review soon.  But in the mean time, here is a quick tip:  Soak a couple of cotton balls in petroleum jelly then use them as a fire starter.  Worked liked a charm for me.

Apartment Prepper is Selling Paracord Bracelets

My fellow blogger, Apartment Prepper is so clever.  Not only has Bernie written a great survival book, The  Prepper’s Pocket Guide: 101 Easy Things You Can Do to Ready Your Home for a Disaster, but she also has created paracord bracelets that are being sold for a song through her web site.  If you are like me and do not have the patience to make one yourself, hop on offer and check them out.  Here is a link to Apartment Prepper’s Paracord Bracelets.

E-book reader for less than $100? How about $79?

I absolutely love my Sony Reader.  I love it so much that I got one for Survival Husband too.  But I have to tell you, it was expensive.  I am almost embarrassed to tell you how much I paid for my Sony so I won’t.  At the time, though, I wanted to support Sony and their initiative a while back to insure that e-books were available for free through public library systems.  And for that, they are to be commended.

But now the big news is that Overdrive, the leading provider of e-books to libraries, is offering Kindle versions of their eBooks and Amazon, being a master marketer, has announced the new Kindle for less than $100 – $79 to be exact.  This means, in my mind, that e-books have gone mainstream.

Getting your e-books for free from the public library is a cinch.  And if you do not have a library offering eBooks via download, there are plenty of libraries that will allow you to purchase an annual out-of-area library card for as little as $20 or $30.  If there is enough interest, I will be happy to pass on tips and tools for using an electronic book reader.  Just ask.

One thing I might mention:  e-book readers typically stayed charged for two weeks or longer.  I have all of my survival reference books, PDFs, and even my important documents stored on the reader.  Very handy indeed.  In the event of a power outage, I have my docs, my reference materials and my source of entertainment all wrapped up in a neat little package.  With a Solar USB Charger, I would be all set.

What happened to Backdoor Survival Tip of the Day?

Thought you would never ask.  The short version of the story is that I decided to exercise some time management tactics and focus more on quality content than digging through the brain cells for a featured tip.  That said, I have a ton of quality tips to share both from my own archives and my readers.  I plan to compile a tips only article so please, keep those tips coming.  Send your best tips for all things prepping and all things household related to me here: send me an email.

The Survival Store Woes

A few months ago I was very excited to create The Survival Store showing all of the products I have talked about here at Backdoor Survival and then some.  But alas, I did not realize that the various “departments” within the store would not talk to each other and accumulate into a single shopping cart before the cart is  shipped off to Amazon for checkout and fulfillment.  So, please, be aware that each department (or tab), will have its own cart that needs to be sent to checkout.  All items will then accumulate in the main shopping cart at the Amazon site.  I will get around to fixing this eventually, but for now, that is not a big priority.

Thank you for your loyal support!

Finally, I would like to once again offer my thanks to all of you for making Backdoor Survival part of your life. I am both honored and humbled by your support!

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!


Like this? You might also like:

From the Bargain Bin: Today I am sharing links to some of my own personal prepping purchases. Take a look around – everything is Survival Woman approved.

Sabre Family Home & Property Protection Pepper Spray: I am a big fan of pepper spray. Wasp spray works too but I prefer the convenience of this can that can be mounted next to my door.

Fiskars 7855 8-Inch Hatchet: I think a common mistake is to pick up a cheap hatchet from Harbor Freight and call it a day. This is something you do not want to skimp on. A Fiskars is easily sharpened and will last a lifetime. For less than $25, what is not to like?

Rothco 550lb. Type III Nylon Paracord: As far as I am concerned, paracord ranks up there with duct tape and zip ties. I wish I had know about this stuff years ago.

Volcano II Collapsible Cook Stove: I love my Volcano Stove. So easy to use and it folds up to nothing in its own carry bag.

Lodge Logic 12-Inch Pre-Seasoned Skillet: This purchase changed the way I cook. I se my cast iron cookware for everything from salmon, to bacon and eggs, to biscuits. For under $20, there is not excuse not to own this survival basic. Don’t forget the Lodge Set of 2 Pan Scrapers, a must have for cleaning those food bits from your cast iron cookware.

Lodge Logic Pre-Seasoned Cast-Iron Camp Dutch Oven: My second piece of cast iron cookware. Great when used on the Volcano II Stove.

MAGLITE XL50-S3016 LED Flashlight: I own a number of these. Small, sturdy, and easy to handle.

Emergency Essentials is your source for all things preparedness, from prepackaged foods to water barrels, to go bag kits.

Emergency Essentials/BePrepared Emergency Essentials/BePreparedEmergency Essentials/BePreparedEmergency Essentials/BePrepared


Wednesday Potpourri: A Pot of Beans and October Musings — 7 Comments

  1. I love people, I give too much thought to things, I’ve never had an encounter with a really bad or truly evil person, and I love target shooting all my life and am a gun club member for this purpose.

    If I see someone breaking into my car in my driveway, it’s time to yell out the window while I’m dialing 911. Shooting someone for property theft is bad. If I see someone beating someone in a parking lot with something, it’s time to make mental notes, retreat, hide, and dial 911. Shooting a plainclothes detective during an arrest is very bad.

    But if there are bad/crazy/stupid people coming uninvited and by force into my home at 2:00AM I am guessing they are not lost and looking for directions, or offering to clean my chimney. There is no time to pick up the phone and dial 911, they are moving very fast to find the occupants (unless it’s a lone drug addict/burglar looking for a fast swipe of electronic toys), and everything in the life of my family now depends on my swinging the shotgun up from beside my bed, chambering a load and pulling the trigger. I hope I don’t stop to think that night.

  2. I’ve flown everything from the Cessna 150 to the Huey. It was one of the great joys of my life. My last PIC time was in 1998, with the Civil Air Patrol in a T-141. Alas, the Air Force took the plane away, the squadron was disestablished, and shortly thereafter I failed my Class II medical. No more for me. How jealous I am of your husband.

  3. Re: Could You and Would You Shoot Someone

    With all due respect: Mark is absolutely correct, Arsenius … Not so much!
    Relying on a paintball gun to save you and/or your family from an intruder will – not to put too fine a point on it – get you killed! Use of pepper spray while advisable and effective in many environments, can be a mistake in a closed environment (e.g. a house)where it has the potential to do as much damage to the defender as to the invader.
    Once you’ve witnessed or been the victim of the violence associated with personal assaults, home invasions, car jackings, etc, you’ll understand the dynamics of the situation and why certain measures are effective or…otherwise. If not, try for your own sake, to imagine a scenario wherein you and/or your family are in harms way. How would you react..?
    For example, pretend for an instant, you a home-intruder in the process of breaking into a home. You are not a passive being. You are one very hopped-up machine whom is ready, willing and able to carry out your crime. Break in, do the deed, get out and … DON’T GET CAUGHT – these are your priorities!
    You’ve succeeded in entering the home of your victim(s). Adrenaline + Intent + Fear all add to the emotional mix boiling inside you. All of the sudden, the home owner is across the room. He, too, is frightened; however, he’s got the drop on you and he fires! You’re hit but so hopped up it doesn’t immediately register that the “Hits” aren’t paintballs or rubber bullets. All you know at the moment is they simply don’t stop you. You return fire. I’ll let you finish the scenario for yourself; however, this is not an unlikely situation other than you may replace rubber bullets with the real thing and the story doesn’t always change.
    Please let me suggest (as a former cop): if you choose to protect yourself and your family – at any cost – use no half-measures. No paintballs, no rubber bullets and, unless you’ve absolutely no other choice in a closed environment (small indoor space) no pepper-spray.
    As suggested in the article, prior considering the purchase of a gun for purposes of self defence, you must decide whether you are willing to employ deadly force. If not, do not purchase a firearm. If so, learn about firearms; speak with experts who train and instruct people in their use ( e.g. range-masters). These folks are more than happy to provide information, suggestions and the training necessary to insure competancy in the use of guns.

      • Arsenius… howdy!
        My statement: “…not so much” was a kind way of saying I disagree with the idea that rubber bullets or paintballs are an effective weapon against someone a potential victim is considering shooting. I think it’s a suggestion well meant; however, based upon my experience, it’s a dangerous suggestion. My point was/is: in a high intensity situation where a decision needs to be made e.g. “shoot/don’t shoot,” nothing but the real McCoy is likely to stop “the bad guy”. More often than not… one shot – even with live ammo – isn’t enough.
        No insult intended!

        • Shane, I think you have me mixed up with somebody else. I read the thing about using a paintball gun and nearly fainted dead away. I will have to go back and look at what I wrote, maybe I was unclear. If it’s down to brass tacks, I prefer a shotgun. Never even owned a paint ball gun.

  4. There are three really good reviews on the EcoZoom by rightwingmom on Lisa’s site

    Cooking with the EcoZoom
    Camping Eggs on the EcoZoom
    EcoZoom: The Versa vs The Dura

    All three reviews are recent (Sept. 2011), very helpfiul and full of pictures!

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