Book Festival 7: Urban Emergency Survival Plan


Today I share the next author interview and giveaway in the Backdoor Survival Book Festival 7.  Jim Cobb, the author of Urban Emergency Survival Plan is back again to answer some new Book Festival questions and of course, to award one lucky reader with a copy of the book.

This is Jim’s fourth entry in the BDS Book Festival Series and with good reason.  His books are solid references with credible information that can easily be put into action with a minimum amount of stress and cost. 

. . . Read More

33 Brilliant Non-Traditional Preps


Pick up any preparedness book or visit any preparedness website and you are bound to be inundated with ideas for getting yourself ready for an unexpected disruptive event.  After awhile, the eyes begin to glaze over as you realize that you are reading the same thing over and over again.

The good news is that if so many people are talking about something, it must be true, right?  For obvious reasons, I am going to leave that one alone for now. 

. . . Read More

12 Months of Prepping: Month Twelve


The term “at the twelfth hour” is often used to describe something or someone that is late. But in Month Twelve of 12 Months of Prepping, nothing could be further from the truth.  More to the point, if you have been following along the Backdoor Survival series on 12 Months of Prepping, One Month at a Time, you have already taken major steps toward becoming self-sufficient if a natural disaster or other disruptive event should strike in your neighborhood or within your family group.

. . . Read More

The Survival Buzz #146


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

Although sick room supplies are a serious matter, I had a bit of fun this week while trying on my Tyvek disposable coveralls.  There was, however, a method to my madness if not to my antics.  The purpose of my try-on was twofold.  One, to assess maneuverability and two, to assess proper sizing since I did not find any size charts or guidelines in the product description.

. . . Read More

It is Never Too Late to Embrace Personal Austerity

Embrace Austerity

Whenever my travels take me to the Seattle area, I am amazed at the extent of conspicuous consumption. The fancy cars, the filled-to-the-brim shopping bags, and the crammed-to-the-gills restaurants are always a surprise.  Perhaps I have lived in a rural community too long but when whenever I see this, my first thought turns to wondering whether these city folks have a clue about living simply and being prepared.

Do they have a rainy day fund?  Do they have stored food?  Do they have skills to survive without a job or a government hand-out if the worse were to happen?

. . . Read More

Book Festival 7: 77 Days in September


Today I share the next author interview and giveaway in the Backdoor Survival Book Festival 7.  Ray Gorham, the author of Daunting Days of Winter, is here to answer the Book Festival questions and to award three lucky readers with copies of the two e-books in the Kyle Tait series: 77 Days in September and Daunting Days of Winter.

That’s right, there will be three winners!

Before I turn things over to Ray and his interview, I feel compelled to mention that as recently as last week, scientists were warning that an attack on the US power grid is not something to disavow. 

. . . Read More

8 Essential Items: The Perfect Portable Survival Kit


There is a popular school of thought that dictates that your survival kit should follow you everywhere.  Within this context I am not referring to a bug out bag or a vehicle emergency kit but rather a small, portable survival kit that you carry with you during the normal course of living your life.  This kit is commonly referred to as your EDC, or Every Day Carry.

I feel that the term “EDC” is misleading because it implies a set of items that is always with you, no matter what. 

. . . Read More

Survival Basics: Using Mylar Bags for Food Storage


Anyone who has been researching and studying food storage has undoubtedly heard the term “Mylar bag” mentioned relative to storing bulk foods.  So what exactly is a “Mylar bag”?  And what do you need to know to begin using Mylar bags for food storage?

As with the ubiquitous oxygen absorber, the mention of Mylar bags brings up as many questions as there are answers.  We have all heard that the best way to store dry goods for long term storage is in a Mylar bag but how are they used? 

. . . Read More

The Survival Buzz #145


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

The first order of business is my preps. This may not seem like a big deal but I learned to use a bucket tool opener to pry open the lid of a sealed, five gallon bucket.  In this case, it was a bucket of coconut oil which in the past, required Shelly’s brawn to open.  Ladies, it is time for us to do more of the heavy lifting ourselves! 

. . . Read More

Make Your Own Healing Lotion Bars


About a month ago, I thought to myself, “Self, wouldn’t it be nice to have some of my healing salve in lotion bar form?”.  This has been something I have often considered but as with a lot of projects, it kept moving to the back burner.  Finally though, I got serious and in order to keep myself on track, reported my intentions on the Survival Buzz.

Before we start, let me say this.  Making lotion bars is so dang easy and the results so darn great, I should have done this months ago.

. . . Read More

The Miracle of Thanksgiving Prepper Style


Over the years I have shared all types of Thanksgiving messages, from the upbeat and optimistic to downright depressing.  Perhaps I have mellowed a bit since becoming a prepper because these days, I prefer to look as the rosy side of life and life’s events. I have learned, as I am sure you have, that less is more, material goods are just stuff, and that nothing beats a belly full of good food and a hug from someone who loves you.

. . . Read More

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. 

. . . Read More

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.

. . . Read More

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.

. . . Read More

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.

. . . Read More

Book Festival 7: The Ultimate Situational Survival Guide


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.

. . . Read More

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.

. . . Read More

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? 

. . . Read More

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. 

. . . Read More

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.

. . . Read More

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. 

. . . Read More

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. 

. . . Read More

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.  

. . . Read More

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.

. . . Read More

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. 

. . . Read More

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

. . . Read More

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.

. . . Read More

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. 

. . . Read More

Summer/Fall 2014 Book Festival: The Liberty Dying Series


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.

. . . Read More

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.

. . . Read More

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. 

. . . Read More

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. 

. . . Read More