Challenges of Living in a Small Home, by Hollyberry

I have always lived in a small space (apartment/mobile home/cabin) since leaving mom and dad’s nest many years ago. Small living is not for everyone. Being in a small living area, with pets and personal belongings, it can get crowded quickly. My husband jokingly says that we live homicidally close! I find that organization is important, as is letting stuff go when no longer needed or used. If you save everything because you may need it one day, then you can quickly run out of space. Clutter can take over quickly if not kept in check. We try to keep …




Navigating the Real Estate Price Dilemma, by Jonathan Rawles

One of the largest obstacles to relocation is the high prices of land and homes in desirable retreat areas. With mortgage rates rising, but prices still high, affordability is taking another hit. As a brief example, a recent search on Zillow for homes in Boundary County, Idaho with the criteria of 2,000 square feet and 20 acres returned only four results, starting with a rustic off-grid cabin at $850,000. There are many factors playing into this, including a limited supply, high demand, and a skewed market. Rural areas hold only 20% of current housing supply and 10% of new builds. …




Low-Cost and No-Cost Preparedness

Many SurvivalBlog readers have contacted me, lamenting that they don’t have enough money to prepare.  My response? Re-prioritize how you spend your time and money. The following suggestions are primarily based on my own experience. Avalanche Lily and I do our best to live a frugal life. Please prayerfully consider and implement some or most of these suggestions, as new year’s resolutions. Here are some suggestions for spending less money: Pray. Prayer costs nothing, and it helps focus your mind on your priorities. Chief among these should be your family, friends, fellow church congregants, neighbors, and co-workers. Study. Used books …




Building a Garden Dome to Increase Food Security, by K.R.

The pandemic has interrupted supply chains worldwide. Combine this with rising fuel costs, government crackdowns on fertilizer use, and suspiciously frequent fires at food processing plants, and people start talking about reductions in our society’s ability to produce enough food. While it is helpful to be able to store food, real food security comes from being able to grow enough food on your own indefinitely– in all situations. In this climate, and with inflation heating up, my wife and I felt that the best tangible investment we could make was to increase our ability to grow food. We already have …




Locksmithing for TEOTWAWKI, by R.M.G.

Let’s take a moment to think about all the things/issues a locksmith might help us with today, that we might be able to prepare ourselves for tomorrow. We have keys and locks that secure our house, our vehicles, the storage shed/workshop out back, our place of business, our guns, our money/important papers/silver/gold. The list goes on and on, and most of it is stuff we take for granted. Many of us have no idea that there are things that we can do to better secure all or most of the things listed above and most people don’t know that there …




Rainwater Harvesting – Part 2, by K.R.

(Continued from Part 1. This concludes the article.) Our Primary Rainwater Capture System When the time came for us to put in a new garage, we had the opportunity to install a larger rainwater system that could also capture snow melt, as well as store water during the winter. The collection system is an in-ground French drain running the 60-foot length of the building, between the eaves of the building and the hillside. The drain empties into a 1,000-gallon concrete underground cistern. We put in a septic tank for the toilet in the garage, so we just dropped a second …




Rainwater Harvesting – Part 1, by K.R.

Imagine that you have a 2,000 square foot cabin in the Inland Northwest and a spring rain shower thunders by that drops an inch of rain. If you were equipped to capture the rain that hit the roof of your cabin, you would have just picked up over 1,200 gallons of water. Rainwater harvesting is an easy win that can provide a significant supply of water. With a relatively small investment, you can provide a significant amount of water that you can use for gardens, washing, animals, firefighting, and–if treated–drinking. At the very least, capturing your rainwater as a redundant …




Lessons Learned: A Burst Pipe, by Kim F.

Thursday afternoon, I realized the full significance of the noise I heard running through my pipes. It wasn’t a dripping faucet somewhere, there was a leak under my slab. I live in hurricane country. I’ve had an abundance of experience with the aftermath of these storms in my more than half a century of life. You could say I’ve been prepping since I was 8 years old. In all that time, I’ve never lost water. Power, yes. Hot water, yes. I’ve never even experienced a “boil water” alert, except when I was volunteering for disaster relief in other communities. But …




A Log Home in the Woods, By Thomas Christianson

More than eight years ago now, my wife and I fled suburbia for a log home in the woods. A log home in the woods sounds very idyllic, but the reality may not be as charming as the concept. Based on our limited experience, I have some advice for people who may be considering a similar flight. Not Necessarily a Log Home If you own enough timber and have enough time to fell, prepare and season the timber from your own property, a log home may be a good option. But if you are buying the materials from someone else, …




First Aid: Accident Drill!, by K.B., M.D.

It is time for a drill! I am a retired, disabled physician who is going to submit to you real-life scenarios that have happened in my family—-at home. In this practice, you are to imagine yourself and your loved ones in each of the following situations. What would you do? Do you have what you would need? Pretend that you are the first responder and decision-maker due to a SHTF situation in your region of the country. (Otherwise, always seek help from a trained and licensed medical care provider!) The phones are down and the roads are impassible. Disclaimer: I …




Garden Architecture, by R.B.

It’s always surprising how much “stuff” gardeners need and can use in order to grow the simplest crops. My son always shakes his head at the number of T-posts, sticks, concrete blocks, strings, wires, fences, plastic sheets, bedsheets, etc. that appear in and around my gardens from time to time. Here are some of the “architectural ideas” that help me produce a widely varied harvest. Plastic Jugs Ya ha ha! You an’ me, Little Plastic Jug, How I Love Thee! Farmers and gardeners have always had to rely on their own ingenuity when confronted by surprise conditions that threatened their …




Wheel Estate For Survival, by Pat Cascio

As a lifetime Prepper, I’m always looking at ways to improve the odds of surviving, whatever may come my way. I readily admit that no one, no matter how rich they may be, can prepare for every circumstance that may come along, that demands survival. I remember back in school, in the early 1960s, when we practiced “duck and cover” as a way of surviving a nuke going off in our city. Even back then, it was silly to believe that by  ducking under your desk while in school would add to your survival chances. Our school was huge – …




The Incredible Disappearing Retreat in the Woods (Update)

Today I’m providing an update and expansion to an article that I posted back in early 2009. This is something that I first shared with a few of my consulting clients. It is an approach at rural retreat construction that can make a rural retreat of 10 acres or more essentially “disappear”. House SitEs and Road Building If there is a thick screen of trees or tall brush between the public road and potential building sites at your undeveloped country retreat parcel, then your property might have a good candidate for a “hidden retreat house”. This is accomplished by making …




Hardening Your Stick-Built Home, by Jeff G.

Imagine the world is full of looters, in the end of times as we know it, it will be. When grid power goes down everyone else food from the urban and suburban areas find food. You are prepared aren’t you? You have done everything right. You have food stored for you and your family, you have guns, ammo, seeds, batteries, etc. The closer you are to an urban area the sooner it will happen. Even if you are in a remote area west of the Missouri River they will probably find you. No matter how many safeguards you have in …




SurvivalBlog’s News From The American Redoubt

Today we are presenting a special edition of this column, highlighting woodworking companies, all around the American Redoubt region. (Idaho, Montana, eastern Oregon, eastern Washington, and Wyoming.) Pictured is a set of custom cabinets by Hughes Woodworks in Huson, Montana. Idaho In Boise: Idaho Custom Woodwork is a custom-made furniture and full-service repair and restoration shop that specializes in “…all types of furniture repair and total antique restoration. We specialize in building outdoor and indoor furniture, Farmhouse style, live wood edge, live edge river tables and modern.” o  o  o In Coeur d’Alene: The Joinery Custom Cabinetmakers crafts high-end custom …