BDS Book Festival – Make Your Place and Make It Last + a Chat with Raleigh Briggs

Avatar Gaye Levy  |  Updated: November 24, 2020
BDS Book Festival – Make Your Place and Make It Last + a Chat with Raleigh Briggs

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Every once in a while I will come across an author that simply charms the heck out of me.  Such is the case with todays entry in the Backdoor Survival Book Festival.

Today I am very excited to introduce you to Raleigh Briggs, the author of Make It Last: Prolonging + Preserving the Things We Love and Make Your Place: Affordable, Sustainable Nesting Skills.  Oh my gosh – you are going to love these books and of course, one lucky ready will have an opportunity to win a copy of each of these two books.

Make it last & Make your place - Small

So why do I love these books so much?  First of all, they are hand written and hand illustrated.  See what I mean by charming?  But beyond that, it is what is under the covers that counts.

These books are chock full of tips and how-to’s covering everything from health and first aid to household cleaning, to gardening, repairing clothes and fixing all kinds of things around the home.  Have a leaky faucet?  The Make It Last book will tell you how.  Need to wash your hair but are out of shampoo?  Make Your Place will show you how.

Make Your Place Inside Pages

I could go on and on but why not turn things over to Raleigh so she can put things in to her own words?  Enjoy Raleigh and what she has to say then be sure to check out the details of this week’s giveaway below.

A Chat with Raleigh Briggs

My books are Make It Last: Prolonging + Preserving the Things We Love and Make Your Place: Affordable, Sustainable Nesting Skills.  Both are how-to books focusing on DIY domestic skills.

Make Your Place covers herbal remedies, making nontoxic house cleaners, and gardening. Make It Last focuses on home repair, food preservation, and mending clothes. For each book, I spent about a year or two researching, testing recipes, and writing.  Both books are hand-written and illustrated by me.

I am hardly the first author to write about DIY skills, so I had plenty of resources at my disposal.  I spent a lot of time at the library, and I then supplemented my findings with careful internet research. Then, I tested out the techniques I discovered and made adjustments as I saw fit.

I love learning new skills, so it was exciting to be able to share them through my writing.  But also, I wanted to be an advocate for self-education and reclaiming the skills a lot more of us used to have. The skills the books cover are especially helpful if you’re trying to save money or want to be a more conscious consumer.

And they’re fun, too!

The Book Giveaway

A copy of each of Raleigh’s two books have been reserved for one lucky reader.  Here is this week’s quiz question (you know how I like to make you think!).

What is your favorite, tried and true, nesting skill?

To enter the giveaway, you need to answer this question by responding in the comments area at the end of this article. The deadline is 6:00 PM Pacific next Tuesday with the winner notified by email and announced in the following Sunday Survival Buzz.  He or she will have 48 hours to claim the winning books.

Note: If you are reading this article in your email client, you must go to the Backdoor Survival website to enter this giveaway in the comments area at the bottom of the article.

summer book festival 2013_04

The Final Word

My love affair with salves continues and Raleigh offers up a DIY herbal salve that I just have to try.  And then there is a section on fixing a non-cooperating zipper.  Who has not had that happen to them at precisely the wrong moment.  Like I said, useful, practical stuff that, in all of its quirkiness, is a delight to read.

I hope you will enter the giveaway – I just wish that I could give a copy to everyone!

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.

Spotlight Items:  Make It Last: Prolonging + Preserving the Things We Love

This is a practical guide to prolonging the lives of cherished items in the home. Tips for mending clothing, preserving the harvest from a home garden, drying herbs and meat, and other money-saving ideas are accompanied by humorous handwritten anecdotes and illustrations. This manual is a treasured addition to the library of anyone interested in keeping costs down, being more self-sufficient, and cultivating new skills.

Make Your Place: Affordable, Sustainable Nesting Skills

This little book is a charming collection of illustrations and thoughts around what it is that makes a great DIY household—homemade cleaning solvents that aren’t made from poison, herbs that will heal you, and how to setup a great garden. These tips and tricks fill in the gaps for those of us longing to live this lifestyle but lacking the necessary know-how.

Bargain Bin:  Listed below are all of the books in the current Backdoor Survival Book Festival. There are both fiction and non-fiction titles and a bit of something for everyone.owl reading book


Backyard Cuisine: Bringing Foraged Food to Your Table
Home Remedies
Living on the Edge: A Family’s Journey to Self-Sufficiency
Make It Last: Prolonging + Preserving the Things We Love
Make Your Place: Affordable, Sustainable Nesting Skills
The Pocket Guide to Wild Mushrooms: Helpful Tips for Mushrooming in the Field
Good Clean Food
The Amazing 2000-Hour Flashlight
Recipes and Tips for Sustainable Living
The People’s Apocalypse
Go Green, Spend Less, Live Better


Going Home: A Novel of Survival (The Survivalist Series)
Surviving Home: A Novel (The Survivalist Series)
Expatriates: A Novel of the Coming Global Collapse
The Border Marches
Rivers: A Novel
After the Blackout
The End: A Postapocalyptic Novel (The New World Series)
The Long Road: A Postapocalyptic Novel (The New World Series)
3 Prepper Romances:  Escape To My Arms, plus 2 other e-books (your choice)
Prepper Pete Prepares: An Introduction to Prepping for Kids


The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day: The Discovery That Revolutionizes Home Baking
Escaping Home: A Novel (The Survivalist Series)
Living Ready Pocket Manual – First Aid: Fundamentals for Survival


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Emergency Essential Order Jul 2013_03

The monthly specials at Emergency Essentials feature discounts of up to 35% off sometimes a bit more.  I have a monthly budget and each month I add a bit more FD products to my long term storage – always making my selection from sale items.

There are a lot new items that are put on sale each month – be sure to take a look.

Note: I earn a small commission on your purchase making this a great way to support Backdoor Survival which will always be free to everyone.

Shop the Emergency Essentials Monthly Specials


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Just released!  My new eBook, The Prepper’s Guide to Food Storage will provide you with everything you need to create an affordable food storage plan, including what to buy and how to store it. Nothing scary and nothing overwhelming – you really can do this!

Now available at Amazon.

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48 Responses to “BDS Book Festival – Make Your Place and Make It Last + a Chat with Raleigh Briggs”

  1. My nesting instincts have significantly slowed down from when I was raising 4 girls, taking care of the home, tending a vegie garden, cooking, baking, creating holiday family events… for over 30yrs. Things done while raising children….you know? Now my nest is empty but my girls have picked up where I left off. They still remember special times and things I’ve forgotten. I’m happy about the memories they keep.

  2. My family had a small farm and chores were a normal everyday activity. My parents would fix things many times before getting something new. on at least 2 ocations our truck broke the fan V-Belt. my dad would ask for my moms pantiehose and we would proceed on our way. Mom not to happy but pleased we were on our way. this “fix it around the farm” attitude is probably my number 1.

  3. I would have to say my favorite nesting skill is cooking comfort food from scratch.
    I am also proficient at keeping the house in repair, but it is not necessarily a favorite skill. That and I am the designated wood stove operator. (I have been attempting to delegate keeping the fire burning to almost anyone else, but I am having trouble finding “takers”.)

  4. I would say my best nesting skill is my resourcefulness. Normally, I can make a meal, preserve food and fix most anything with the barest of materials. I try to read and learn everything I can so as to be an asset instead of a liability.

  5. I’m still trying to determine my useful skills, but would probably go with developing a library of different topics for additional research and reminders.

  6. What do you mean by “nesting skill”? What is “nesting” to you? My first thought was make a nest type pile with which to start a fire, does that count?

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