Welcome to this week’s Sunday Survival Buzz – a roundup of preparedness news, tips, articles and recommendations from around the web. But first, an update on my own preps.
My adventure in DIY cleaning products continues. This week I made some luscious soft soap. Yes, really. I started with bars of hotel sized soaps that I have been accumulating over the years and made the best dog-gone soft soap I have ever used. I call it my “Dirt Cheap Soft Soap”.
I also ordered a large hank of purple paracord.
I keep an eye on the price of the various colors I am interested in and when it hits my mark (typically $8.99 for 100 feet), I buy. So why does the color matter? Let’s just say that just because we prep does not mean we can not have fun. I recently picked up the book Adventures in Paracord from our library got some really good ideas for DIY paracord accessories. The purple paracord is to color coordinate a keychain for the Survival Husband’s Harley. And that I is all I will say about that.
Did you know that Harbor Freight will deliver for a flat rate of $6.99? I loaded up on some welding gloves, various tools and four 4-Tier Shelf Racks for storing my food preps in a more organized manner than boxes stacked on the floor. At the time of my purchase they were on $14.99 each so how bad can they be. I will report back.
Okay, enough about me. Let’s get on to the Sunday Survival Buzz.
Survival News & Articles from Around the Web
A note from the Survival Woman: Beware. There are a lot of links this week. Perhaps it is because I had a poopey week or perhaps it is because I simply wanted to clean out the list I have been maintaining so I can start fresh. Pick and choose what interests you.
Beware of Gift Card Fees: It’s the time of year when offers for gift cards abound. Here in Washington State, gift cards never expire but elsewhere, some gift cards expire in five years and/or are associated with various fees. Not only that, the value of the card diminishes if the card is not used within a year. Have an eyes wide open approach when you purchase or receive gift cards this year -and be sure to read the fine print.
Homicide not suicide: Spain facing ‘humanitarian’ crisis over evictions: Sounds a bit like the Great Depression of 1929-1933.
Find Out What Info Retailers Have Been Tracking On Your Returned Purchases: I don’t like the idea of retail purchases and returns being tracked but am afraid it is here to stay. The only positive aspect of this – if you can call any type of tracking positive – is that habitual cheaters who purchase something with the intent of using it (or wearing it) then returning it when done may get cut off.
The American illusion of water abundance: This may surprise you.
16 Foods That’ll Re-Grow from Kitchen Scraps: You might be surprised by some of the items on this list. Mushrooms and cabbage anyone?
The Most Often Forgotten Survival Preparations: This a wonderfully written piece about secondary survival preparations. You know, those things beyond food, water, first aid and defense that are not as widely talked about but critically important none-the-less.
Whistleblower: Million-dollar tax bills made ‘to simply disappear’: As a business owner who pays 1.8% as a business and occupation tax on my gross earnings (not profit) this makes my blood boil.
Do we really need a second inauguration?: Nope. And even if big business and private corporations pay for it, ultimately we the citizens pay the price when we purchase consumer goods and services.
The Truth About Seeds – Just Saying . . .
It is important to remember that it isn’t just heirloom seeds that breed true. Any open pollinated variety will do so. An heirloom is just an open pollinated variety that has been designated as “heirloom”.
Essentially, hybrids are the only seeds to avoid. And if it’s a hybrid, it has to say so on the seed pack. Another thing: if it is a hybrid, it may be GMO as well. Labeling is not required.
It makes no sense to limit your seed varieties by choosing only heirlooms when there are thousands of other non heirloom open pollinated verities to choose from also. Some of them may be more suitable to your particular needs and geographic location than any heirloom. I will save a discussion of pre-configured “seed banks” for another day.
Backdoor Survival Tip
The following came through as a comment from reader “hoagie” and a light bulb when off. Here is the comment:
I’ve also gone through old tools, cleaning them up and arranging them so they’re stacked neatly and in operating condition. Pry bars; shovels; pick axes; whatever I feel one might need in times of trouble. Last weeks earthquake made me think of what I would need if a building were to collapse.
My thoughts? Great idea about cleaning up and organizing the tools that are scattered about. We are always picking up new tools – and tool sets – because it is too difficult to locate what we have. I think we need to gather them from around the house, the garage and the crawl space, put them in a big pile, then go to work.
The Blogroll aka Recommended Sites and The Honor Roll
My revamp of Recommended Sites – now Blogroll – continues. This week I have added My Family Survival Plan, an alternative news/survival website dedicated on keeping the American public aware of the daily and future dangers in their existence.
Please pardon the dust while the Blogroll page is being re-organized.
Kristie at Full Moon Survival reports that they have over 100 new products listed on their site including new food storage items and the Humless Roadrunner Generator. The Humless Roadrunner Generator can be charged from a regular AC wall outlet, or it can capture and store energy from solar panels, a hand crank, windmill, DC car outlet, or almost any other 12VDC power source.
Sounds to me that this would be a good product to include with your survival gear. After all, look how long the power was out following Superstorm Sandy. It can happen.
For new products, click this link to the new product collection. And here is a link to information about the Humless Roadrunner.
As with all of my sponsors, please pay them a visit and let them know you saw them on Backdoor Survival. Speaking of which, check out the Backdoor Survival Sponsors page and support the fine companies that allow me to keep Backdoor Survival free for everyone.
Are you familiar with John Wesley Smith and the Destiny Survival radio show over on the Preparedness Radio Network?
Well whether you are or not, I will be a guest on the show on Thursday, November 29th at 1:00 PM Central. The show is held on the the Preparedness Radio Network (PRN) on Blog Talk Radio. PRN was founded by James Talmage Stevens, a.k.a. Doctor Prepper, author of Making the Best of Basics.
As of this moment, I plan to be talking about my book (co-authored with George Ure), 11 Steps to Living a Strategic Life and the show will be available for download or listening online after the fact. As always, I am nervous but know that it will be a fun experience.
For the New Prepper
This page is a launching page for a bunch of links that will help the beginner prepper. Don’t get overwhelmed, get informed and act! This page will be added to frequently. If you have article suggestions for this page, please email me – todd.sepulveda [at] prepperwebsite.com.
If you see something here on Backdoor Survival or elsewhere that you feel will be helpful to the new prepper, be sure to let Todd know.
Tis the Season to be Gifting
There is lot of competition for your dollar these days and to tell the truth, I was a little blown away by an email I received from a reader indicating that Backdoor Survival had become overly commercial. It was hurtful, actually, and the the sender later apologized. Still, I feel pretty strongly about offering this site for free to everyone. Where you care or not, this is what I had to say:
I am so sorry you feel the way you do. I actually have to purchase most of the items I review myself along with everything else related to this site. Believe me, it is not a huge money maker. Each article takes 3 to 4 hours to write and I do that is in addition to my regular job. Also, you will notice that unlike most other sites, I do not and never will ask for donations. What I publish is free and the choice whether to buy something or not is yours. No pressure at all.
The other thing is that I do have advertisers and try to promote their products as best I can. It is because of them that the site can and will be free.
The last thing is that I have written many many articles with good prepping tips. I try not to repeat myself too often and so I branch out to other areas from time to time. If those seem commercial, so be it. What I am really trying to do is share my knowledge so you do not make a mistake by purchasing inferior gear.
Amazon has a cool new promotion that can help you find great gifts for the holidays. It is called Shop Amazon – Most Wished For Items. What is great about this is that when you go to the page it gives you a quick category overview so if you are looking for something is “Sports and Outdoors”, for example, you can go there first.
This is a great tool to find gifts. It is also a great way to find products that people are ‘wishing” for and that therefore might be the top products in a specific category.
The Final Word
This month has been pretty chaotic on a number of fronts. It seems as though there has been one mishap after another coupled with a lot of work (job-wise) and a series of things that simply did not go well. Being a “roll with punches” type of gal, I have tried to bounce back and remain resilient.
A victim of the November mess was Thanksgiving dinner with my family. Instead, Survival Husband and I cooked our turkey yesterday and toasted our thanks and gratitude with a cranberry martini a few days late.
How about you? If the stress of the holiday season is getting you down, distract yourself by organizing your prepping supplies, putting together a prepping binder, or simply kicking back with a good book in the survival fiction genre. As with everything, the stress will soon pass.
Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
Bargain Bin: Need to build or add to your bug-out kit? Here are some things from Amazon to get you started.
Rothco Medium Transport Pack: What I really like about this pack is the narrow profile. As you can see in the picture, it is only as wide as my body. Sure, it sticks out a bit in back but at least I do not bump in to things. There are lots of compartments and pouches and it by far, the most comfortable pack I have ever worn.
Rothco G.I. Plus Nylon Paracord 100ft – Purple: As of today, the purple paracord is still $8.99 for 100 feet. Neat stuff.
Kershaw OSO Sweet Knife: This “oh so sweet” knife is solidly built, stainless steel knife that comes razor sharp right out of the package. It will pretty much cut through anything the price is amazing. About $23 – sometimes less.
Flash Drive: I cannot over emphasize the importance of having important documents on a flash drive. Sure, the power may be out temporarily but for the nominal price and virtually no weight, it is silly not to carry all of your documents and survival reference guides on a flash drive.
Streamlight Nano Light Keychain LED Flashlight: extremely small and light weight yet it will throw off a decent amount of super-bright light. At just .36 ounces and 1.47 inches long, the Streamlight Nano Light Keychain Flashlight will take up a minimum of space in your pocket or bag.
Windstorm Safety Whistle: This particular whistle can be heard a long distance away and above howling wind and other competing sounds.
Swedish Firesteel: Using this basic pocket fire-starter, you can get a nice fire going under almost any conditions. This is a small, compact version.
Pepper Spray: It is always good to have some form of defense that will temporarily halt a bad guy that is in your face.
Emergency Mylar Thermal Blankets: These come in compressed packets small enough to fit in a pocket or wallet. You will be surprised at how warm these will keep you. About $8 for a pack of 10.
Be sure to shop the Emergency Essentials Monthly Sales for fantastic deals – typically 20% to 30% off.
I eat a lot of fruit (usually three whole fruits a night as a bedtime snack) and in a SHTF situation, fruits will be something I will really miss. The Freeze-Dried Fruit Favorites Combo from Emergency Essentials is something I use all year round. With the grocery store a 20 mile round trip journey, I like the thought of being able to rehydrate my own fruit, in the quantity I want, at a moments notice.
The selection includes Apple Dices, Bananas, Peaches, Pineapple Dices, Blueberries and Strawberries.
But not to be left out, there are veggies too. The deluxe supply of Freeze Dried Vegetables includes 18 #10 tins of the following veggies in various quantities: Broccoli, Cauliflower, Sweet Corn , Green Beans, Green Peppers, Green Peas, Mushrooms, Potato Dices, Spinach, and White Onions.
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