The Sunday Survival Buzz Volume 98

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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.

This has been a busy week.  I made some more Miracle Salve including Dreamy Salve, Aches and Pains Salve and Bare Naked Salve.  Recipes to follow but only after I have a chance to test their effectiveness,  You know me, I like to be the guinea pig first so I don’t pass on bum information.

NY Day Salves

NY Day Salves and more

I also made a batch of Better Than Good Laundry Soap and I organized my laundry and cleaning supplies.  In the process, I realized that I have never demonstrated how I use my Mobile Washer.  Now how could I overlook that?  I have made a note to take some pictures the next time I use it – probably next Saturday.

I did not do much shopping this week but will be placing my monthly Emergency Essentials order in a day or two and will report back on that next Sunday.

Gamma Seal Test

The big deal prepping project this week was to set a bucket with a gamma seal lid out in the rain to test whether it leaked.  I set the bucket out on January 1 and it has been raining like crazy since.  On Saturday (January 4th), I opened it and it was bone dry.  So what is with these reports I am getting that gamma seals leak and do not produce a good seal?  I am going to do more testing but my guess is user error (oh oh).

Okay, enough about me.  Let’s get on to the Sunday Survival Buzz.


How the government plans to dictate what’s on your dinner table in 2014:  The title says it all.  Thanks, Shelly, for finding this one.

Original Cheerios to go GMO-free: On the other hand, we have some good news.

Natural Honey Citrus Syrups for Coughs & Sore Throats:  Here are 5 easy-to-make, no cook, naturally flavored honey syrups that can be a home remedy to soothe a sore throat or cough. They’re also a tasty way to add natural, nutrient-rich flavors to hot tea or water.

The World Braces for Retirement Crisis: As someone who lost a significant portion of my retirement savings in the 2009 stock crash, I can only nod my head and say “I told you so”.  Did you know that my angst over the meltdown and bailouts is what spurred me to start Backdoor Survival?

Banks Working With HELOC Borrowers To Prevent Potential Loan-Default Disaster Before It Happens:  If you took out a HELOC during the housing boom, be aware that the payment period may begin soon.

Ham Radio 101: Getting Started Without a License:  This article has been around for a while but if you picked up one of those inexpensive BaoFeng’s last month, here are some tips for getting started before you actually get your license.

Why Are So Many Wealthy People Building Futuristic High Tech Security Bunkers?:  The wealthy are spending more to protect themselves from all the rest of us than ever before.   As far as I am concerned, they can have their high tech gadgets and high tech bunker-homes.  If the SHTF, who is going to be there to cook for them, clean for them and cow-tow to them?  Not us.  Jeesh, I must be in a cynical mood today.


Here is a useful storage tip from “Joe”:

Hi there from your fan.  I wanted to pass on my tip on the subject of containers.

I have switched to clean, new 1 gallon paint cans.  Volume wise, they are cheaper than mason jars.  My preference for them lies in their ability to keep sunlight out.  And they don’t break.  I just write on the outside of the can with a sharpie, what is inside and the date.  If i have multiple cans, I number them and use the largest number first , so i know how many cans are still in storage.

You do have to shop around though for price, as it varies from source to source. At my favorite source (brick and mortar) I am now paying $2 per can. In Texas, it is more like $4 (that would be Lowes) and online places are not shy about charging $6.

The cans also keep out the bugs, mice, rats and bears. They do rust on the outside though.

Just a word of caution about the paint cans.  Make sure they are washed with soapy water and dried thoroughly before using them for food storage.  BTW, Joe is someone who mentioned that the gamma seals leaked.  As I mentioned earlier, I will let you know the final results of my testing.

Here is a tip from “Jim” regarding maintaining your gear:

I might add for you to ‘maintain’ your equipment also.

A few years ago I bought a 3.5KW generator. I went that day and filled the tank. I ran it a few times, once a month for 3 or 4 months. Then I got busy and forgot about it. The next summer our electricity failed. So did the generator! I had inadvertently put ethanol in it! All moving parts in the carb had become glued together! After a few days of scraping and cleaning I managed to get it to running again. Now I make sure to use only 100% gas, and also to run it with the gas shut off until the carb is empty.

Also, either use STA-BIL in the gas or drain the tank before the gas ages too much! Oh, I did get lucky that the electricity was only off for a few hours that time. When it was off for a week this year the generator more than paid for itself.

Inquiring Minds Want to Know

This week I ran two informal polls over on Facebook.  One poll asked for feedback relative to questions you would like answered about the use of Potassium Iodide in the event of radiation exposure. There were a ton of questions asked so although I hope to wrap up my article for Wednesday, it may take a bit longer.

The other poll had to do with Essential Oils.  There is still time to provide input as I formulate my E.O. article strategy for 2014 – simply leave a comment below with your thoughts.

With regard to essential oils, what are the Issues that interest you the most? In my case, I am looking for alternatives to traditional medicines and over-the counter remedies. But how about you? What do you need help with? Examples: Earaches, Flu, Eczema , insect bites etc.


On New Year’s Day I held a surprise giveaway for copies of my new eBook, The Prepper’s Guide to Food Storage.  The winners are Kathy, Vikki, Kris, Edna and Marvin.  I have already contacted you by email and sent out a copy of the eBook.  Congratulations and thank you for participating!

One of the winners of Ron Brown’s book, the Amazing 2000 Hour Flashlight did not claim his prize.  Catherine B. was selected as an alternate.  Here is how she answered the question: What is your favorite flashlight (type, brand or style)?

Right now, I have a couple of small 9-led flashlights, so I guess they are my favorites–they work! Plus, unlike my large Maglite and other lights I have had, these haven’t grown legs and walked away! I would love to have a big light!


Reminder: if you are interested in finding a past article on a specific topic, you can use the Search box on the right hand side or select SEARCH from the menu bar.


2014 is getting off to a great start.  Remember that balance I wrote about?  I actually took an entire day off on New Year’s Day and spent my time away from the computer, away from Backdoor Survival and away from my normal frantic pace of prepping.  Let me tell you – it was terrific.

If you have been stressed by an ever-growing list of things to do, try to step away from it all for a few hours or a day.  I guarantee that you will feel a whole lot better for it.

Until, next time, remember to make every day a prep day!

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!

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Are You Interested in Essential Oils? 

With each passing day I am using my Spark Naturals Essential Oils for some new purpose.  If you are just getting started with essential oils, I recommend the Spark Naturals Essential 4 Pack.  This is a good starter kit that includes Lavender, Lemon, Melaleuca (Tea Tree) and Peppermint.  These are your go-to oils although I feel that Rosemary should also be in your starter kit.

If you decide to give Spark Naturals a try, be sure to use the discount code “BACKDOORSURVIVAL” to receive a 10% discount.

Bargain Bin: For your discernment, here are of some items mentioned today as well as some personal and BDS reader favorites and items from the current Amazon Top 10.

BaoFeng UV-5R  Dual-Band Ham Radio: I had to look twice when I saw the price of this – $29.55 as of this writing!  The Baofeng UV-5R is a compact hand held transceiver providing 4 watts in the frequency range of 136-174 MHz and 400-480 MHz. It is a compact, economical HT that includes a special VHF receive band from 65 – 108 MHz which includes the regular FM broadcast band. Dual watch and dual reception is supported.  Here is the antenna I ordered:  NAGOYA Antenna for BAOFENG UV-5R (thanks to a recommendation from my pal, George Ure).

Blocklite Ultra Bright 9V LED Flashlight: I now own six of these little gems. There is a similar flashlight called the Pak-Lite (which is more expensive) but it does not have a high-low switch like this one. Less than $10. These little flashlights just go and go, plus, they make good use of those re-purposed 9V alkaline batteries that you have recharged with your Maximal Power FC999 Universal Battery Charger.

FordEx Group 300lm Mini Cree Led Flashlight Torch Adjustable Focus Zoom Light Lamp:  Here we go with another flashlight.  At the time of this writing, this one is only $3.55 with free shipping.  It is super mini sized, bright and waterproof.  Plus, it uses a single, standard AA sized battery.

Morakniv Craftline Q Allround Fixed Blade Utility Knife: Also known as the Mora 511, this is now my favorite knife.  It is made of Swedish steel and is super sharp.  I paid $12 for this knife last week and today it is $8.95 so I ordered another one.  It was worth $12 and of course is a steal at $8.95!

LifeStraw Personal Water FilterThe Amazon Top Ten Most Wanted Survival and Outdoor Items   Backdoor Survival:  The LifeStraw is considered the most advanced, compact, ultra light personal water filter available. It contains no chemicals or iodinated resin, no batteries and no moving parts to break or wear out. It weighs only 2oz.  making it perfect for the prepper. For more information, see my LifeStraw review.


Shop the Emergency Essentials Holiday Specials

The Perfect Homemade Biscuit Mix from Food Storage   Backdoor Survival

I love my 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 the price – only $14.95.

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The Sunday Survival Buzz Volume 98 — 10 Comments

  1. Do you or any of your readers remember an news article regarding an Israeli Doctor (MD) working in a Cleveland Ohio research facility developing a vaccine against radiation exposure? The vaccine was to be effective either pre or post exposure. This might have been a scam but if real this is a remarkable breakthrough. I do not wish to carry this any further since I only heard one announcement. There has been silence regarding this since then.

    Respectfully submitted,

    Rick Horman

    • That would be a monumental break through, considering Fukishima. Who knows, it could be legitimate but our govt. ….ya know. Frankly, I don’t see such a vaccine existing, but who am I to say. I’m going to search…..I do remember something about that…..some time ago.

  2. I have a question about the paint cans: Would you put the food in directly, and is the material food-safe, or would you put some type of liner in first? Thanks

    • I would not put food in direct contact with the bucket unless it said it was “food safe,” it may be, but nothing stops you from using mylar or other containers THEN putting it in the cans. For me, it’s not an option since I live in a fairly high humid area at certain times of the year. I prefer the glass of jars and plastic tubs which are food safe. My glass jars aren’t see through though, I have taken old socks which are too worn to wear, I cut the toes out and slide them on my jars. This way I can have them as close a possible and not be concerned about breakage (except for my clumsy fingers); this also keeps the food dark and labels are on the top of the jar and on the shelf where they live.

  3. In answer to Martha P., all metal paint cans have a “special coating” and depending where it was made, (off shore etc.) the coatings can be hazardous to your health!! So as stated before, wash the insides REALLY good before using. Personally I would make sure and use a food safe liner.
    There are also 5 gallon metal cans that have snap clamp ring lids that are very good for long term storage. Most times you can find them used for a couple bucks if you can locate them. The last ones I found were used to store anti-moisture packs.

  4. Didn’t do a lot this week. I’m beginning the year with a broken computer and broken glasses, so I’m scrambling to figure how to pay for them. It was just a reminder about having more than one pair of glasses around. That and making more buddy burners so when a collapse comes, it’s something I can give freely since it’s more a case of recycling than buying new.
    The other piece was going through my LARGE amount of knives, sharpening and deciding which needed to go in the camping gear with new knife sheaths (which I have to make).
    I am at a point, I will not worry about Fukushima, I can’t take what would be passed out if it was available upon point of need. I also won’t worry about what the govt will or will not do. Too many years of being a military wife, so I will trust my intuition and my awareness to know when bug out or not, OR do something else. I do plan on increasing my circle of like-minded people with whom I could BUG IN or OUT.

    • Dee:
      I know what you mean about figuring out how to pay for…. I ran into this as well with a sickly computer. I have an Iphone but don’t like to have to look at things too much on the tiny screen. I was able to afford a new computer though. As for glasses. I purchase my extra glasses from Walmart. They are relatively inexpensive in the scheme of glasses. My “real” glasses I have insurance for so that is not an issue. Insurance however will only pay for 1 pair. So, I checked out Walmart and got an inexpensive frame. The glasses were just about $100. Now, since I don’t wear these glasses – just keep them as spares, I change out the lenses when my prescription changes (if it changes significantly). I take them when I travel and like to have them with me when I go to work just in case my “real” ones break.

      I like your idea of the buddy burners to hand out when needed. I have been saving cans for a while and cardboard as well. Think I will get on it.

      • I’m amending my give away. I will make and give or barter, depending on who and the situation. People are more willling when making a trade than accepting charity.
        As to the glasses, ‘real’ comes first then saving $$ for those spares. Those frames are spendy since they have to take me dropping them and my service dog (soft those his mouth is) getting them back to me. Of course, it’s also dealing with me rolling over them sometimes too. LOL
        O and the buddy burners, I’m making 2 sizes…the regular tuna cans and the supersize cuz they work better under a large pot or cast iron.

          • actually I’m making 3 sizes now. A tuna fish size can, that larger tuna can and the tiny cat food sized cans. I’m doing some with paraffin wax, but because parraffin is petroleum based, I’m also doing beeswax, cooking oil and used cooking grease. I just may have the events to try them since we have a big storm coming in with hours and with that comes power outages and trees down. I know the parrafins work well out of doors but carbon monoxide is an issue if/when used indoors which is why I’m experimenting. I’m also planning on using some for my indoor radiant heat using ceramic pots. http:// www. id/Candle-Powered-Pottery-Heater/

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