The Sunday Survival Buzz Volume 126

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

Those of you that have been around since early Spring will know that I lost my tomato seeds.  Yep.  I had brand new, 2014 heirloom tomato seeds that I used to start some seedlings.  Long story short, but when it looked like the seedlings were not going to make it, I was all set to start over.

First tomatoes

This is the truth.  I spent over two hours looking for my tomato seeds.  This week’s prep is that I found my seeds in the small refrigerator I keep in the garage.  Boy do I feel silly.

But speaking of tomatoes, the plants in my pots are doing well and so much better than I expected.  Not only that, for the first time ever, I have a number of “volunteer” tomato plants that have sprouted in my garden bed.  I am not sure what type they are but the plants and the baby tomatoes on their branches look healthy.

Last week I cut up old jeans to use for char cloth.  This week I cut up some old, soiled microfiber cloths to use as potty rags just in case we run out of TP.  In case you were wondering, no, the edges do not unravel so no hemming is required.  Now mind you, these microfiber rags were probably 15 years old and have served me well but it was time.  I enjoy using the bright new and colorful microfiber cloths I purchased from Amazon a few months back.

That about covers it for me this week.  Now for some announcements.


Teabag asked:

Do you know of any place i can get information on how to use silver to purify water? I know it can be done and has been done for centuries, but can’t find anything specific online. No doubt the companies who make water filters are suppressing the information, but it has to be out there somewhere. Thank you.

Okay, readers.  Surely there is someone that can help.


Summer Survival Blast Bonus: A HERCulean Giveaway (Hurry! This one ends on July 21st.)
Summer 2014 Book Festival: The Prepper’s Blueprint + Giveaway


The winner of the SolarBag Water Purifier is “Joseph H.”.  If you name is Joseph, check your email and claim your prize!


There is still time left to get in on the Item of the Week from Spark Naturals. The item currently being offered is my favorite Health and Wellness Kit and, with your purchase, shipping is free on your entire order.

Don’t forget to use the code BACKDOORSURVIVAL at checkout to get an extra 10% off.


It has been a few weeks since I migrated to this abbreviated version of the Sunday Survival Buzz.  The response, thank you very much, has been fantastic, but more important, I have shaved enough time from my blogging schedule to get in some weekend R&R.

Perhaps the best part, though, is that more of you are sharing your weekly prepping activities with the rest of us.  Some of my best ideas come from learning about your experiences, so thank you for that!

And now, what about you – what did you do to prep this week?

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!

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In addition, when you sign up to receive email updates you will receive a free, downloadable copy of my e-book The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.

Bargain Bin: The article I wrote on DIY cleaning turned out to be hugely popular all around the web. In cased you missed it, here is a link to the article Prepper Checklist: DIY Cleaning Supplies and to some of the products that I use to make my own cleaners.

Amazon Basics Microfiber Cleaning Cloth, (Pack of 36): No list of DIY cleaning supplies would be complete without these wonderful microfiber cloths. They will last you for years and will allow you to replace paper towels forever. Truly. I color code using blue for glass and windows and the other colors for everything else. I love these.

Dr. Bronner’s Sal Suds Liquid Cleanser: I know that Dr. Bronner’s Magic Castile soaps have a cult-like following but I prefer the Sal Suds. I call my DIY cleaner “Sudsy Sal”.

Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soaps Pure-Castile Soap: Of all of the Dr. Bronner’s castile soaps, peppermint is my favorite.   I use it to make “Peppermint Magic”, an all purposed cleaner.

Soft ‘n Style 8 oz. Spray Bottles: I happen to like these smaller bottles and you can not beat the price for a set of 3. Likewise for these Pump Dispensers.

Peppermint Essential Oil: I favor peppermint and tea tree (Melaleuca) essential oil in my cleaning supplies. But there are many types of essential oils to choose from. Take your pick. One thing you will find is that a little goes a long way.  The nice thing about essential oils from Spark Naturals  is that they are also excellent for therapeutic and healing use and well as for use in DIY cleaning supplies.  Just remember to use the code BACKDOORSURVIVAL at checkout to get 10% off your order.

Budget Essential Oils:  For the budget minded – and especially for use in cleaning supplies – consider NOW Foods Essential Oils.

Mobile Washer

Mobile Washer: This is hand operated washing machine. Like a plunger, it uses a technique of pushing and pulling the water through clothes to clean them well without wearing them out. It uses a minimum of water and less soap due to the agitation motion. Use in a bucket (5-gallon suggested), sink or tub. The best part is that it is only $14.95.


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For over 25 years Emergency Essentials has been providing the highest quality preparedness products at great prices.  Plus, each month they feature sales that quite honestly are fantastic.  This month note the great sale prices two of my favorites, the Mobile Washer (Hand Operated Washing Machine) now only $14.95 and the Tote-able Toilet Seat and Lid, now only $11.79.



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The Sunday Survival Buzz Volume 126 — 24 Comments

  1. Silver – I have read that when wagon trains were heading west the people would toss silver coins into their water barrels. I think that was to keep bacterial growth down. They also did the same for fresh milk. Also, many ceramic water filters are silver impregnated for the same reason. Then there is also colloidal silver. Information all over the web about how to make your own.
    Preps this week? Due to weather the main one was ordering more freeze dried foods. And, of course, reading BDS and other prepper information. Couldn’t work outside much, like I needed to, with the weather going from hot and muggy to wet and chilly! Baby chicks are about 3 months old and their voices are starting to change from a “cheep” to a “cluck”. 🙂 Strawberries are struggling, but still alive. Now to get busy bagging up more beans and rice!

  2. Morning
    Gaye – glad you are getting some time for yourself and you found seeds.

    This week I made so e peach raspberry jam. My son picked the raspberries and asked me to make jam, so I had enough fruit to mix and make a couple jars. This week we got more blueberries at the farmers market so I’ll be making some of that this afternoon.
    Our cucumbers are growing like mad, so I rigged up some more places for it to vine onto. I’ll also be doing some pickles and relish this afternoon.
    The other big thing thing I did was research into solar which included determining what we need to power during an outage vs ‘want’ to power and then determined what we’d need to do supply the power. Still have some more research to do and then cost it out.

  3. Forgot to add I know nothing about silver, but I am totally intrigued and will ask my son who’s studying chemical engineering if he has any ideas.

  4. Good morning Gaye! Glad you found the seeds safely tucked away! You can always use them next year 🙂

    This week we brought several items up to our BOL Cabin Homestead including Hubby’s whole Time Life Home Improvement Series of books that are chockfull of good-to-know skills and easy to follow directions. (Personally, I like paper resource materials over the electronic versions.) We also brought up a few hundred more 22LR rounds for my little rifle. Having seen bears near the cabin on the trailcams, it feels even more urgent to learn how to shoot with some mastery, if only to make some noise to scare them away. Also received our Health & Wellness essential oils kit and am looking forward to experimenting with those.

    We spent a day on the Homestead chopping a tree’s worth of firewood for winter, and doing a long ramble around the acreage. We were rewarded with finding four pounds of wild mushrooms (yay! Chicken of the Woods!), wild blueberry bushes and elderberry bushes too!

    I’ve also been inspired to put together at least 20 bags of emergency supplies that I can donate to the local community in case crisis hits. Here in Appalachia, we are prone to severe flooding every few years, and the local churces often set up shelters to house and feed displaced citizens. I’d like to be able to help by dropping off a bin of comfort kits for the folks who may have to stay there awhile. Fortunately, I have already amassed a good inventory of towels, hotel-sized toiletries and steel water bottles. I’m going to add packs of ear plugs, sleep masks, playing cards, small notebooks and a box of granola bars each. Hopefully a quick-driveby drop off at the church will maintain my own OPSEC but still help those in need.

    Have a great week Gaye and enjoy your moments of R&R. It’s important to stay present and grateful always.

  5. Silver: Go to the or do a search in case the url isn’t exactly correct.

    You can make your own colloidal silver, as I do, really cheap.

    It is anti-bacterial, anti-microbial, anti-fungal, anti-germ…anti everything bad.

    We drink it, spray it on our food to make it last longer, spray on counters to kill germs, soak produce in it (diluted) to get germs, pesticies, chemicals off, put in dog’s water. We use it for everything…keeps us from getting sick.

    I would not want to be without it. I have a lot extra made for the future. You can get a colloidal silver generator from this silver site. They are not expensive. Please go there & read his info. You will be glad you did…Vicki

    • Vicki – do you use distilled water? I’ve read that using tap water can create all kinds of health threatening compounds. I make my own colloidal silver, but always use distilled water and 9999 fine silver wire (yes, four 9’s). That also makes it easier to measure the parts per million of the batch. I try to keep mine between 5 and 15 ppm. (Distilled water reads 0.00 ppm). I’m not a fanatic about using it, maybe an ounce a day, unless I feel a cold coming on. Then several ounces per day.

      • I have a silver generator and use it all the time. I knew it would disinfect water, but now that you brought it up, I don’t know how much to use. I have the “THE ULTIMATE COLLOIDAL SIVLER MANUAL, by Steve Barwick, but in the 541 pages, I cant find the formula for purifying water. Yes, you have to use distilled water. Sometimes you have to use different brands to keep the water absolutely clear.

        • Actually, now that I think a bit. If teabag is referring to removing toxic chemicals, heavy metals, pesticides and such as “purifying” the water…I don’t think you can do it with silver. In order to make colloidal silver you need distilled water, that is already purified. If the filtered water has chemicals or other contaminates in it then you do not want to use it to make colloidal silver. Now, maybe mixing colloidal silver with filtered water would kill microbial contaminates that the filter may miss.

  6. This week I took an online course on dairy goats,helped my husband build a new pen to house our ram and attended the first meeting to establish our MAG (Mutual Assistance Group). Leaving on Monday to look for BOL property,this is a huge step for us and I’m very excited!

  7. This week I finished our chicken tractor which is working great and the chickens love it. Also put netting around berry plants to protect them from crows. And so am planning for more berry plants.

  8. A good source of information on using silver to purify water is through a hot tub chemical outlet. Literally, type into google search “silver for hot tub water” and take your pick of sites. Pretty cut and dry info there so not much opinion is injected for the sake of internet cross referencing. Good luck. By the way, it works great.

  9. Yes, you have to make colloidal silver with distilled water processed by steam, or it won’t work. So read the label. You can get the whole kit (minus water) from the It’s better than vinegar, rubbing alcohol, bleach, or anything else. I believe it also works as an antibiotic. Marvelous stuff. The more you read about it, the more you’ll want it and the more uses you’ll find for it.

  10. I finally broke down and sent my money to They are now selling their legacy membership for $250. With this membership you can go as often, or as many times as you want for the rest of your life. I bought one for me, one for my grandson, and one for his father. We are planning on going when he is out of school for his fall break. It starts Oct 6. I think BDS should have an annual get together there.
    Going along with this, yesterday the FedEx man brought me 5 gallons of coconut oil, (at half price, whose idea was that?) 2000 rounds of 9mm, and 1000 rounds of 40 cal. For this 4 day course at Frontsight, you need 600 rounds per person. 600 rounds through a 40 cal, I know my wrist is going to be sore, but I am so excited that I wont mind. I have been wanting to go to this place for over 2 years, and now it is going to happen.
    I made a 55 gallon waterer, and a 55 gallon feeder for the chickens to go crazy with while I am gone.

  11. I have used Utopia Silver products for 20 years. They are educational and competitively priced: I produce my own “ionic silver” which is best for external uses. I buy the colloidal silver on sales. I know Steve Barwick says his generator produces true colloidal silver, however, I personally doubt it and do not want to chance that I am ingesting ionic and not colloidal. Utopia Silver has some good free articles on making and using colloidal and ionic silver.

  12. My preps this week…I have canned chicken noodle soup to add to the pantry. Checked on how the wild blackberries are coming along…a few are turning red. Looks like I will have plenty for canning and jam. Put down a gallon of fresh eggs in a salt brine. I will let you know how that works, and I, too, have tomatoes almost ready from my 3 potted plants. Mine are in 5 gallon, old well used farm buckets!

  13. 5 gal buckets work wonderfully for tomato, pepper & even eggplant, and much cheaper to buy than pretty pots…just drill a few holes in the botttom for drainage. 🙂 the blackberries my daughter & I planted a couple of weeks ago are a couple of days away from perfectly ripe, and my hubby & boys got some more work done on the house we’re building.

    I have a lot of veggies coming on in the garden and bought a Menonite cookbook on how to cook just about any veggie…I needed that, I’d run out of ideas, and if the SHTF and we have to survive on snared rabbitss & our garden, I’ll be thankful.

  14. Glad to hear you found your seeds. I lost all my heirloom tomato seedlings before they made it into the ground – darling little 3 yo son decided to play in the dirt on the shelf.

    Our backyard is sunny, but it’s that horrible spotty sun. None of my plants want to grow, so I’m now experimenting with what time we have left to see if I can salvage anything with aluminum foil under the plants. Going on 2 weeks with the reflective “mulch” in place and so far, so good. I might actually get enough cucumbers to do some pickles and the cherry tomato plants are now going nuts.

    I think next year I’m going to talk the hubs into letting me take over the side yard and add a couple dwarf fruit trees to the mix. I know they’ll take a year or three to get going, but they’ll be right in line with the grapes, blueberry, and blackberry bushes.

    • I’ve had a nectarine tree in my front yard for about three years. Forgot the dormant oil last fall and the borers killed the tree this year. Dangit! I was hoping for fresh nectarines this year and because of my forgetfulness all I have is a dead tree! Now I gotta start over, if I have time!
      Don’t forget the dormant oil!

      • Ouch. Sorry to hear especially on an established tree and I’ll keep that in mind. I’m still doing research on what trees are best in our area of GA and how much work they need. I remember helping my grandparents prune the orchard, but that was it. They didn’t have any types that would be considered exotic and everything was huge, but low maintenance. I’m vertically challenged and yard challenged, which is why I’m think dwarf trees. We just don’t have the space to accommodate full size trees.
        I would love to do what the family in California did to their yard, but our city codes just won’t allow it – no chickens, goats, or backyard veggie takeover for us yet. The hubs said I could raise rabbits but ONLY after I found someone that would teach me how to butcher, clean, and cook them up right. I never got to participate in the butchering phase of any animal as a kid – grandparents raised goats, chickens, a cow every 2 years, sheep (wool, not food), plus all the fishing and hunting. I wasn’t grossed out, but my folks thought I was too young to be exposed to that part of life.

        • Amanda D. if you are looking for good fruit trees for your area go to your state extension office and they usually have a good listing of everything that grows well in your area. If you are on a tight budget check out Willis Orchards. They have great prices and I have been very happy with the tree’s and bushes that I have bought from them in the past.

          In the past two weeks I have managed to can up 12 pints of chicken breasts, my global sun oven came in so now I can cook without power (as a side note everything comes out really moist and tender in it). I was also able to re-arrange my food room. For me that is a big thing! I also got two cans of dehydrated refried beans and several cans of wheat and a couple of other items.

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