Long-Term Preparedness for Your Baby or Toddler Part 2, by K.F.

baby foods

Sustainably Diapering Your Baby or Small Child in a Long-Term Emergency

In an emergency situation, one has to consider how you are going to diaper your child for the duration. If you choose to store disposable diapers and wipes, you must have an action plan for how you will dispose of them properly. Obviously, this is not a sustainable option for an emergency with an undefined length of time, but many prefer this method.

Most people would call me a “crunchy” mom. I gave birth at home in our bedroom, I avoid big pharma, and I am a huge proponent of the sustainable nature of cloth diapering. After much research, I excitedly stocked up our cloth diaper stash with various options before our daughter was born. My goal was to try as many methods as possible and determine the most suitable solution … Continue reading

Long-Term Preparedness for Your Baby or Toddler, Part 1, by K.F.

baby foods

Feeding Your Baby or Small Child

Consider feeding your baby or small child in the midst of tropical storms, flooding, and with threats from nuclear testing. As world events are painting an increasingly grim picture, my husband and I have felt the urgency to set aside some backup resources in case of a long-term emergency. My husband is the “must-have-a-plan-for-everything” kind of guy. Therefore, he has excitedly mapped out our emergency storage space, along with the details of its contents. He is an avid “outdoorsman”, so many of the items that we would need for long-term preparedness are either already in our arsenal or familiar to him in some capacity.

But, when we found out we were expecting a baby, it added a whole other level of things to consider. How do you feed a baby or toddler in a long-term emergency? What about diapers? Medicine? With my background of … Continue reading

Letter Re: Food Storage Question

Mountain House


With limited storage space, cost not a concern: Is it better to store the typical dry beans, rice, etc.? Or would you obtain a higher calorie count with something like the Mountain House cans?

HJL’s Comment:

It really depends upon your budget and what means you have to store food. Dry beans and rice (and similar foods) are easy to store and can provide a basic sustenance, dense calorie count diet with very little supplementing from other food sources. However, it is a very bland existence. If just surviving is the name of the game, it will work, but I like more variety. If you are willing to add herbs and spices to your survival pantry, you will be much happier. More expensive items like freeze dried foods work very well when you need to minimize the cooking aromas (so as not to draw attention to yourself) or are … Continue reading

Valley Food Storage, by Pat Cascio

Valley Food Storage

While there are many different types of “survival foods” on the market, ranging from military MREs to freeze-dried and dehydrated plus any number of types of off-the-shelf foods that last a long time, today we are looking at dehydrated foods from Valley Food Storage.

Survival Foods

Having been a Prepper since I was a little tyke, I’ve tasted all manner of “survival foods” over the years. Some were better than others and some much, much better that others. Then we have some that aren’t very tasty, but they will keep you alive. My family and I are always on the lookout for something new to try and add to our food stores, and we make a point to eat what we store. I’m not a very picky eater, but some would say otherwise.

JWR’s Recommendations of the Week

can sealers

Here are JWR’s Recommendations of the Week for various media and tools of interest to SurvivalBlog readers. This week the focus is on can sealers.


Raven Rock: The Story of the U.S. Government’s Secret Plan to Save Itself–While the Rest of Us Die

o o o

The Strange Death of Europe: Immigration, Identity, Islam



Dunkirk (now in theaters)



Ricky Skaggs: Soldier Of The Cross

o o o

The Best of Mary McCaslin: Things We Said Today

Letter: Sealing a #10 Can

Sealing #10 can


A friend recently acquired the capability to seal #10 cans. He’s bought a supply of new cans and is still playing around with the concept. He offered me the opportunity to do a few cans of my own. The concept has intrigued me. What would you pack in a #10 can if you could choose the contents?

My preliminary thoughts

My thoughts are a #10 can would be good for stuff that must stay one or more of these:

  • Oxygen free
  • Dry
  • Sterile
  • Clean

  • Recognizing and Resolving Common Vitamin Deficiencies, by J.F. Texas

    Vitamin Deficiencies

    Ideally every person from birth through old age would get all the nutrients they need from the food they consume, but deficiencies occur. There are times when the optimal amount of nutrients from food intake are not possible. People who consume energy-dense, nutrient-poor foods can develop a marginal micronutrient intake and low serum concentrations of vitamins. In times of food shortages or limited access to fresh foods, nutrient deficiencies can become even more common, especially vitamin deficiencies.

    What are vitamins?

    Vitamins are organic molecules required in small amounts to prevent deficiency signs and symptoms. The most concern is for water-soluble vitamins—the B vitamins and vitamin C. These are essential nutrients the body cannot make. The body does not store water soluble vitamins in large quantities. You should consume them every day. Water-soluble vitamins are lost during processing because they are fragile. This increases the risk of inadequate intake even in … Continue reading

    Freeze Dried Friday

    shaft seal failure

    Welcome to Freeze Dried Friday on SurvivalBlog! We’ve been making so many things in the Harvest Right Freeze Dryer that we want to share some of them with you. If you have something wonderful you’ve prepared in your freeze dryer that you would like to share with SurvivalBlog readers, take a photo of it and send it in along with a description. We might just feature you here! Today we’ll have a quick note about a shaft seal failure. But first:

    Keeping the Freeze Dryer Filled

    Harvest season is getting close here. Some herbs are just about ready to be harvested, and I can see the garden produce weighing down the plants in the garden. But they just aren’t quite ready yet. So what do you do with you’re Harvest Right Freeze Dryer while waiting for the bountiful harvest to come in?

    A trip to Costco (or similar) for their … Continue reading

    Freeze Dried Friday

    New Mexico Style Red Chili

    Welcome to a new column on SurvivalBlog! We’ve been making so many things in the Harvest Right Freeze Drier that we want to share some of them with you. If you have something wonderful you’ve prepared in your freeze dryer that you would like to share with SurvivalBlog readers, take a photo of it and send it in along with a description. We might just feature you here!

    A Halting Start

    This week with the garden harvest starting to ramp up, the freeze dryers are getting ready for their workout. Freeze Dryer number one is back up and running after having the main seal blown. It only took about an hour to pull the pump apart, replace the seals, and get it fired back up. I’m not sure why I dreaded that job so much because it was easier than I remember the last time.

    Request for Information on Dehydrating Fruit

    Dried Fruit

    Sweetened Dried Fruit

    My dehydrator has failed me. Well, not really, but I can’t seem to create what I want so I’m asking for help from the SurvivalBlog readership. I love the sweetened dehydrated fruit that you can buy in stores, but I am unable to recreate this yummy snack. While I can successfully dehydrate fruit for storage, it has a tendency to look like leather rather than the colorful, tasty treat that you see in this picture. If you can tell me how to re-create this, you will make me a hero to my grand-kids! Leave your ideas in the comments section.- HJL

    Harvest Right: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly – Part 2, by HJL

    Harvest Right

    The Ugly

    Yesterday, I talked about the changes that have been made to the Harvest Right Freeze Dryer in their new model that made it worthwhile to upgrade. We also reviewed some of the annoying things about the unit that make it difficult. Today, I’m going to review some of the “uglier” aspects of this unit. SurvivalBlog holds a high standard when it comes to product reviews. You’re going to get the bad with the good here. If you purchase this unit based upon our reviews, you’re going to know what to expect. I already covered the major changes that Harvest Right made to the new unit. These “uglier” aspects deal mostly with just owning and operating this type of device. Unless otherwise noted, it applies to both the older model and the newer model.

    The Elephant In The Room – Price

    Let’s get this out in the open right … Continue reading

    Letter Re: Food Storage Expiration

    storage food


    First, let me share a little background. I spent 20 years in the industrial labeling area, putting labels on everything from small engines to processed food.

    This experience has given me a critical eye on the expiration dates printed on consumer packaging. I can tell you that the production people, the ones sweating on the packaging lines, are very concerned about the safety of what they are working on. Most of them consider the dates they have to put on the cans, jars, boxes, et cetera as a joke. They know that the packaging they are sending down the line is good for decades.

    With apologies to the bulk packaging/home canning advertisers, I feel you just cannot, in a home kitchen setting, match the quality of an industrial kitchen run by professionals. Is it “over cooked?” Maybe, but it is safe. (If you are canning home grown stuff, go … Continue reading

    Harvest Right: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly – Part 1, by HJL

    Harvest Right


    Three years ago I reviewed Harvest Right’s Freeze Dryer (Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3). Since then, Harvest Right has updated their freeze dryer with many improvements and new features. SurvivalBlog felt is was time to re-visit this subject and update the review based upon these new and improved features. We’ll also include many of the operating tips that we have learned along the way. We’ve been running the new model of the freeze dryer (FD) for almost a year now, right along side the old model. It made the comparison very easy on the new features.

    The Good

    Harvest Right has obviously been responsive to their user base. They’ve listened to the issues, made improvements that the users have suggested, and incorporated many of their customer’s suggestions into the redesigned FD. The original model that … Continue reading

    Letter Re: Food Storage Expiration

    storage food

    I have always wondered about food storage manufacturers’ claims about the shelf life of their products. Many claim 30 years shelf life for what they sell. Of course, the question is how can the consumer ever know that this is true?

    Many purchasers are dead and buried by the time 30 years pass. Who could ever go back and demand that their money be returned if it did turnout that the product had gone bad?

    I know one fellow who obtained No. 10 cans of wheat from a small survival food manufacturer. When he opened a can several years later, to his horror, he found the contents to be moldy. He began opening other cans and found that all of the others were similar. That would obviously be a very bad thing, even something fatal to discover during a long-term emergency.

    I believe that many survivalist/preppers, like me, are reluctant … Continue reading

    Letter Re: Storage Food

    storage food

    Just this past year, I’ve discovered what a good storage candidate sweet potatoes are. I’m in the south, near Austin Texas and find that “Irish” potatoes do not keep well, a few months, and can not be reliably used as seed stock. Sweet potatoes seem much better. They will keep at least 8 months, probably much longer. And they reliably produce plantable “slips”. Nutrition is said to be very good, probably better than white potatoes. Up in Idaho, your mileage will almost certainly vary.

    I offer this as a suggestion to whoever wants to do a more extensive write up.

    Oh! I regularly shop for long term shelf stable store foods. I find almost without exception that sodium contents are unacceptable. Another suggest for someone else to write on. – M.W.