Preparedness Tip Wednesday: Heirloom Seeds and Dehydrated Food

According to some recent statistics, the average family has less than 3 days worth of food on hand. Are you in this category? Are you one of those nonprepared families that has less than 3 days worth of food on hand? If so, what are you doing to remedy that?
Are you putting together a plan to store some food “just in case,” or are you planning a last-minute run to the grocery store — along with everyone else — to try to buy bread, milk, and eggs when disaster strikes?
If that’s your “plan,” good luck. Listen, by the time you get to the store, there likely won’t be anything left to buy. When a disaster strikes, people descend like locusts on the grocery stores, and things like, bread, milk, eggs, and batteries are the first things to be snatched up.
The grocery stores, due to just-in-time inventory practices, don’t keep a stockroom full of merchandise to go out onto the floor. Companies like Wal-Mart, for example, put out their stock as soon as it comes in; what they have in stock is already on the shelves. So the average grocery store only has about two days worth of stock on hand during normal consumption patterns.
When everyone goes running to the store in preparation for a disaster, they likely buy more than they normally would otherwise, so the shelves are stripped bare faster than usual. Wouldn’t you rather be safe at home, knowing that you have a few days worth of food on hand, rather than fighting for the necessities in the supermarket aisle along with everyone else? I know I would. That’s why I store food: I like the peace of mind, knowing that I’ll always have enough to feed my family.
If you don’t have any food stored, I urge you to begin. Just start with a week’s worth. Trust me, you’ll feel better knowing that you have some extra food storage set aside. Up your disaster preparedness quotient!
We understand that not everyone has it in there budget to go out and buy a two month supply of food for each family member. But start stocking up now. When you go grocery shopping and you see a canned item that is on sale, buy a couple more than you normally would and put that in a storage room. Buying in bulk is cheaper than buying small items.
We also recommend buying Heirloom seeds and have on hand supplies needed for gardening so you can have a replenish-able food source. We also suggest having Dehydrated Food as part of your stored food. 


Preparedness Tip Wednesday: Real Story Living off your Food Storage

It is hard to determine how many servings of food storage you will actually need for each person in your family in the event of an emergency. I found this post where a guy shares his real life experience of him and his family of 6 that lived on there Food Storage for a little over 10 months and what he learned from it.

I am a 41 year old Husband and Father of 4 boys that was hit hard by the crash in the construction industry a few years back. I was making less than a third of what I was before the crash. I was offered a job back east and quit the job I had (besides I was burned out), looking forward to what I could offer my family. Well, that fell through and I was SOL.
I have a loaded CDL with years of XP and can get a job at anytime so this is by no means a pity fest. The Wife and I decided we would wait until something that paid well, opened up around here. As you guessed it, it didn’t happen and I was not going over the road. So we decided to rotate through our preps and survive off of them, rather then move. We love it here and Montana is truly a paradise.

Here is a list of what we started with. It is not an all inclusive list, just the majority. This is NOT our LTS. We never cracked open a Superpail nor cut open mylar. We did use some #10’s though.

80 lbs oats, 50 lbs dry beans, including lentils and split peas, 80 lbs of white flour and 80 lbs whole wheat flour.

10 gallons of oil,
3 gallons of vinegar
12 lbs baking Soda
2 boxes Mashed potatoes = 224 servings
2 boxes Dry milk = 360 servings
1+ gallon broth
2 boxes cliff bars = 48 servings
4 lbs organic cookies
3 lbs almonds
4 x cookie = 12 dozen cookies
1 case condensed milk
1 case granola bars = 96 bars
Box of oral hygiene stuff (9 month - 1 Year)
80 lbs noodles
5 cases (12 each) chili
7 cases (12 each) Tomato sauce
5 cases (12 each) paste
2 cases (24 each) soup
2 cases (96) Tuna
3 cases (24) Albacore tuna
1 case refried beans
3 cases mixed beans (Kidney etc)
6 cases veggies
4 cases pineapple
2 cases oranges
1 case Apple sauce
2 lbs yeast.
400+ jars of home canned food...
Peaches, pickles, relish, cherries (sweet and sour), plums, jams, chutney, tomatoes, cheese, green beans, veggie soup, carrots, chicken, beef, pork, fish and game and more.

150 lbs rice (white)
30 lbs brown rice
100 lbs sugar 
100 lbs white flour (outside of what was listed above)

salsa, olive oil, molasses, Crisco, corn meal, baking powder, corn syrup, dried fruit, chicken and beef base (150 servings), trail mix, No. 10 can of butter milk powder, 16 lbs of pop corn, 18 jars of peanut butter (about 25 lbs), condiments (soy, Worcestershire and hot sauces), 3 lbs. Parmesan, minced garlic (96 cloves) 50 lbs of potatoes, Cocoa, coffee and more.

This is just a sampling of what we were working with. We had the freezer close to full as well.

This is just what was in our storage pantry

We used it ALL except… 

5 lbs of oats
Some jam and relishes and home canned Veggie soups.
25lbs white rice.
Baking soda and salt
15 lbs dry beans.
Vacuum packed frozen Razor Clams.
5 lbs or so of venison.
A few random soup bones and frozen greens.
Gallon and a half vinegar.

Lessons learned,

It is never enough. You will use more than you thought. “On paper” and “reality” are different. You eat more than you think. Your kids will eat more than you know. (they are the most demanding)
When you burn through the cold cereal and the store bought convenience, even the little things like butter are sorely missed when you run out.

Homemade German soft pretzel's..

Some things store a LOT better than “they” say. The whole wheat flour was over year old when is started to go rancid. We only threw out a pound or so.
The aluminum baking powder (Calumet) went bad. But, the #10 can of Rumsford baking powder was fine after 10 years in storage and we are still using it after 10 months with no decline in performance.
Powdered buttermilk ROCKS!
The brown rice is still fine, although we are about out.
We had a few cans of 5 year old fruit we had to throw away. They didn’t appear to be swollen but made the “beer can opening sound” when opening and they were discolored and spoiled. Did not, have a problem with tomatoes but, it is a concern of mine. I’ll just can more of my own from now on.
Yeast lasts a loooong time. We had a vacuum packed bag that was stored in a #10 can that was fully viable after 15 years. I don’t think they sell them like that anymore. But, the other vacuum packed yeast we had in the freezer and it is fine after 3 years. We also kept and maintained a sourdough starter.
While we have always been fugal, it is hard when nearly 100% is homemade. The kids need a pick me up and holidays MUST be observed. 
I pushed this hard enough to where I cut off internet for 3 months. We drove the kids in to the library once a week to get on-line. We have never had cable of satellite so that was no loss but, Netflix had to go for 3 months as well. I ended up with more firewood and chores done Lol! I traded for my Son’s senior pics. We mended clothes. We went foraging. The wife is mushroom hunter  

All from preps. Homemade buns too!

We were sorely lacking in "Better than Bouillon" Broth bases. (we like the natural stuff. We don't do MSG) We ran low on some spices. To the point of scraping snow off the herb bed to get at the fresh oregano and parsley. lol

I now know where our weak spots are and will adjust accordingly. I am headed off to work and will be fully restocked in a month or two.

I had the cash to pay rent, gas and power. I had enough to buy some fresh salad fixings, cheese etc. We just wanted to know how far our pantry would go. I am glad we were not forced into cracking LTS. That makes me feel good.

P.S. I have lots of pics of prep cooking if anyone is interested.
Read more at 


Preparedness Tip Wednesday: Urban Preparedness Tips

Urban preparedness tips

urban-survivalWhether you’re unsure of how to plan for a bug out situation because you don’t know where you would bug out to, or you simply prefer the idea of battening down the hatches in your current dwelling to weather whatever catastrophe may strike, urban survival and bugging in are two important topics that are quite worthy of consideration. Most people now live in developed suburban and urban areas rather than out in the countryside, so in the event of an emergency, many people are going to find themselves trying to survive in the concrete jungle.
How well you can survive, amidst looting, violence and the desperation of the under- or completely unprepared, will depend on your own good sense and your ability to prepare ahead of time. Aside from stocking up on basic supplies like food and water, you don’t have to spend a fortune to prepare yourself for urban survival or bugging in, either.
First and foremost, one of the most important things to consider is self-defense for yourself and your loved ones. If an emergency crops up or a disaster strikes, law enforcement will likely be overwhelmed or possibly disbanded entirely, leaving civilians vulnerable to criminals. Those who are clearly well prepared become immediate targets of the unprepared.
To mitigate your risk of being targeted there are some very good things you can do (please note that these are basic guidelines, which can and should be adapted to the specifics of your circumstances and the emergency or disaster that has occurred):
  •    Identify local resources ahead of time, including water alternative water sources for if / when the taps run dry. A reliable water source and method of purification is critical not only to basic survival but also to maintaining any semblance of cleanliness and proper hygiene, which is in turn necessary to avoid the spread of infectious diseases.
  •    Avoid detection by boarding over the windows, keeping lights off at night (don’t underestimate the pitch black of a night without urban light pollution; your lights will stand out and draw attention to you, so keep them off) and entering or exiting your home from a discreet location or when no one is around.
  •    Secure your home or dwelling as well as you can, without being too obvious and drawing attention from the exterior. Additional reinforcement at doors (if not to stop then at least to slow intruders) such as door jammers or barricades, chain locks and additional bolts can all make entries and exits more secure. If it is within your means to do so, you can also use the Russian method of a double door; the front door of an entry point is a heavy, solid metal door with multiple bolts and chain locks, followed by a secondary door of heavy, solid wood with a peep hole or viewing hole, additional chain locks, bolts, etc. If you’ve ever seen a traditional Russian tenement, you know what this looks like.
  •     Whenever possible, try to cultivate a closer and more unified community amongst your neighbors ahead of time. If SHTF and you’re prepared but no one else on your street is, you may find yourself having to hide from or deceive the people you live alongside. Alternatively, your needy neighbors may end up targeting you in their desperation. A closer and better-developed community is especially necessary in the event of any long-term survival situation that may arise following a serious collapse or disaster.
  •     Maintain an unattractive appearance to your house; while many people may be inclined to erect a veritable fortress around their house, this is more apt to draw attention to your location; a house that looks guarded and well stocked is an attractive target to roaming gangs who will probably outnumber and/or outgun you eventually. By comparison, a house that doesn’t look like much, is overgrown in the yard, and has every appearance of having already been ransacked a time or two, is far less likely to attract attention.
Now, in terms of your food and water, when you’re planning on bugging in you are at something of an advantage. Bugging in has its disadvantages, too, but if you have the room for food storage, you can eat like a proverbial king while bugging in. Compared to bugging out, when every ounce of weight in your pack matters and canned food is a heavy luxury item, if you’ve got an empty pantry to fill, canned foods offer a great, economical investment in tasty, quality food that will generally last 3 – 5 years or longer. Compare that to an MRE or some astronaut food. (Also our Dehydrated meals in Mylar Bags are high quality and they last for 20-25 years unopened and don't take up a lot of space)
Also, avoid burning your dwelling down; keep a few fire extinguishers stored for use in case of an emergency and practice safe cooking rules when using fire at any time. Lighting fires inside your home or using a grill is not recommended; if you don’t have a fireplace, don’t light fires inside, period. Likewise, don’t leave anything cooking unattended and if you ever try to dispose of trash or yard debris by burning it be extremely careful. (We recommend using a Sun Oven for cooking your food)
Finally, a well-packed urban survival bag (also sometimes called a get home bag) can be invaluable in case of an emergency that strikes while you’re away from home. Packed with slightly different supplies than a standard bug out bag, an urban survival bag is designed to help you survive an emergency long enough to travel from your current location to your home or to another suitable location you intend to bug out from.
Items commonly packed in an urban survival bag include:
  •   a basic emergency first aid kit
  •    fine particle masks (or possibly a gas mask)
  •    a window punch (for use escaping from a vehicle or building when glass obstructs you)
  •    a crowbar
  •    potentially a small quantity of cash
  •    a pair of sturdy shoes (and possibly socks) esp. for women who wear heels regularly
  •    sunglasses, a handkerchief or bandana, and;
  •    some water and/or snacks for the trip home, it might be a long walk
You’ll probably also want a flashlight with spare batteries, a small, portable radio and a thermal blanket and/or warm jacket, depending on the climate you live in. You might want coins for operating a payphone, and if you rely on your cell phone for important numbers then write down those numbers in an address book and toss it in your emergency bag just in case.
For long-term urban survival following a bug in, there are several additional points to take into consideration, but to get into everything here would go beyond the scope of this article. Suffice to say, for long-term urban survival following a crisis, emergency or other collapse, there would be concerns with trash, vermin and rodents, as well as sanitation, human waste removal, medical care, new food production, guard duties and additional security, and keeping yourself healthy.
Thanks Survivopedia

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