Gardening Year-Round in North Country, by RAP1

Many people see gardening as primarily a busy spring and summertime activity. But in truth it should be viewed as a part-time, year-round pursuit, and It shouldn’t run your life any time of the year. Autumn is actually a good time to begin your garden for next year. But before I explain what I mean, first some background.   Our homestead is 1.7 acres, in zone 5, located in a sparsely populated community in Maine, and includes a small pond, an orchard with 15 fruit trees, a grape trellis, dozens of blueberry, elderberry and raspberry bushes, an asparagus bed, and a vegetable garden roughly a half an acre in size. Until recently, we also had a chicken shed and yard.

One of the best tasks that you could do in the fall is to add cover crops to your growing areas. Cover crops protect soil quality, add nutrients and keep microbial activity going…more on this later. Hopefully, you also might have set aside patches of carrots and beets, and have a good size planting of ‘survivalists’ parsnips in the ground. Carrots and beets and yes even cabbage and swiss chard can be mulched for the winter now. You’ll love these fresh veggies when warmer weather rolls around next spring.

Of course this time of the year we have our storage supply of potatoes, squash, onions and garlic. We’re fortunate to have a cool basement which works well for storing these vegetables, and fruit like apples, asian pears, and we usually have plenty of berries in the freezer.     We also invested in a cider press sometime ago which we crank up in the fall, producing cider, grape and elderberry juice. Some of the cider we boil producing a wonderful sweetener. Two plantings of elderberries a few years ago have expanded to give us wonderful berries and flowers. These we press with the grapes to produce a very fine wine to sip alongside the wood stove in the winter.

Contrary to many gardening experts I no longer have the usual seasonal extenders like hoop houses and greenhouses. Takes too much time, caretaking and unless you’re trying to get a jump start selling crops at the farmers’ market, there is no real advantage to be gained for the homesteader or survivalist gardener. Key to our successful gardening experience is to devote a good deal of time in November to preparing ferments, like sauerkraut, pickle beets and cukes. These are so good that thinking of them now makes my mouth water!

I use the winter months to strategize my next year’s garden. Good time to write down what worked and what didn’t. Along with this I do a broad brush run through last season’s weather. See what parallels there might have been between the two. It’s also at this time of the year I start getting my seeds together. I save squash, potatoes, pole beans, peas, cuke and tomato seeds because it’s easy to do. I’m also at this time of the year cruising discount stores, like Home Depot, looking for big discounts on last years’ open pollinated seeds. Harris and Ferry Morse seeds are sold in these places and they have worked well for me.Continue reading“Gardening Year-Round in North Country, by RAP1”



Editors’ Prepping Progress

To be prepared for a crisis, every Prepper must establish goals and make long-term and short-term plans. In this column, the SurvivalBlog editors review their week’s prep activities and planned prep activities for the coming week. These range from healthcare and gear purchases to gardening, ranch improvements, bug out bag fine-tuning, and food storage. This is something akin to our Retreat Owner Profiles, but written incrementally and in detail, throughout the year. Note that as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. We always welcome you to share your own successes and wisdom in the Comments. Let’s keep busy and be ready!

Jim Reports:

We had a fairly busy week, preparing for our family Thanksgiving gathering. I had to spend several days out on errands, with shopping, vehicle registration renewals, picking up mail, and visiting the dentist’s chair. The latter was necessary, but no fun. l also spent nearly one full day cleaning, lubing, price-tagging, and cataloging the seven antique guns that I had bought last weekend at the Lewiston, Idaho gun show.  There, I was pleasantly surprised to find quite a few nice 1890s-vintage antiques.  I’m confident that I’ll be able launch Elk Creek Company (an Internet-based sales company), in February. My goal is to have at least 60 pre-1899 antique guns in inventory.  The current receiver count is 38, so my goal of 60 pieces seems realistic.

The weather was pleasant for Thanksgiving, and we had a joyful yet muted celebration. One of my sons was not able to attend, because of the hospitalization of his Mother-in-law. Her prognosis, we are told, is poor and her time is short. But we take heart in the fact that she is a woman of strong faith in our savior, Jesus Christ. With the assurance of her final destination, we can rest well. Please pray for comfort, for her and her family.

Continue reading“Editors’ Prepping Progress”



The Editors’ Quote of the Day:

“And all the congregation of the children of Israel journeyed from the wilderness of Sin, after their journeys, according to the commandment of the Lord, and pitched in Rephidim: and there was no water for the people to drink.

Wherefore the people did chide with Moses, and said, Give us water that we may drink. And Moses said unto them, Why chide ye with me? wherefore do ye tempt the Lord?

And the people thirsted there for water; and the people murmured against Moses, and said, Wherefore is this that thou hast brought us up out of Egypt, to kill us and our children and our cattle with thirst?

And Moses cried unto the Lord, saying, What shall I do unto this people? they be almost ready to stone me.

And the Lord said unto Moses, Go on before the people, and take with thee of the elders of Israel; and thy rod, wherewith thou smotest the river, take in thine hand, and go.

Behold, I will stand before thee there upon the rock in Horeb; and thou shalt smite the rock, and there shall come water out of it, that the people may drink. And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel.

And he called the name of the place Massah, and Meribah, because of the chiding of the children of Israel, and because they tempted the Lord, saying, Is the Lord among us, or not?” – Exodus 17: 1-7 (KJV)



Preparedness Notes for Friday — November 29, 2019

Today is the birthday of writer Clive Staples (“C.S.”) Lewis, who was born in 1898 and died 22 November 1963.

I have several Black Friday sales announcements:

Harvest Guard Reusable Canning Lids is offering a 15% discount on all of their products beginning at 12:00 am Friday November 29 through midnight, Monday December 2, 2019. Customers must use the coupon code “black15” during checkout on their web site at:  https://canninglids.com/shop/

The manufacturer (ITT) offered a very special price, so Ready Made Resources is passing along the savings: PVS-14 Gen 3+ Pinnacle Night Vision Monocular White Phosphor High Performance WHP+.
Note that these are normally priced at $4,095, but just for Black Friday they have a limited number of these monoculars at just $2,995. They even offer financing.

A reminder: Palmetto State Armory (one of our affiliate advertisers) is now in the middle of their week-long Black Friday sale.  They have their 16″ Mid-Length 5.56 NATO 1:7 Nitride Classic Upper with Bolt Carrier Group & Charging Handle in Flat Dark Earth (FDE) on sale for just $219.99. Just type “5165457990” in their search box, to find this item. Meanwhile they have match complete lowers on sale for $129.99. Just type “7779346” in their search box, to find this item. If you slap that upper on that lower then–aside for a magazine and a rear sight (or optic)–you’ll have a complete M4gery!  That is a great deal. If you can afford to, then I recommend that you buy several sets.

They also have their Nitride MPI Full-Auto AR-15 Bolt Carrier Groups on sale at just $49.99!  Just paste item number 516446953 into their search box. If you own two or more ARs, then you should keep at least one  compete spare Bolt Carrier Group on hand!

If you have an AR  lower already on hand, then don;t miss their Midlength 5.56 NATO 1:7 A2 Nitride Freedom Rifle Build Kits, at $289.99.  Just type “507279” in their search box, to find this build parts kit.

They are also offering 15% off all MagPul products with coupon code “magpul.” The only exclusions are products like the Gen2 PMAGs and the MBUS sights that are already more than 15% off, and have their own unique coupon codes.

Order soon, since quantities are limited, and they are not taking back orders at the Black Friday prices.

Keep Shooting just advertised genuine US Military Surplus Tri-Fold Entrenching Tools — yes, the genuine article — for about the same price that most companies sell the cheapo Chinese knockoffs. That is a great deal.  Oh, and don’t miss their USGI concertina wire cutters.

Valley Food Storage is running several 25% off specials and even on several of their food storage kits. They even offer no-interest financing on their one year supply kits.

SurvivalBlog Writing Contest

Today we present another entry for Round 85 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The more than $12,000 worth of prizes for this round include:

First Prize:

  1. A $3,000 gift certificate towards a Sol-Ark Solar Generator from Veteran owned Portable Solar LLC. The only EMP Hardened Solar Generator System available to the public.
  2. A Gunsite Academy Three Day Course Certificate. This can be used for any one, two, or three day course (a $1,095 value),
  3. A course certificate from onPoint Tactical for the prize winner’s choice of three-day civilian courses, excluding those restricted for military or government teams. Three day onPoint courses normally cost $795,
  4. DRD Tactical is providing a 5.56 NATO QD Billet upper. These have hammer forged, chrome-lined barrels and a hard case, to go with your own AR lower. It will allow any standard AR-type rifle to have a quick change barrel. This can be assembled in less than one minute without the use of any tools. It also provides a compact carry capability in a hard case or in 3-day pack (an $1,100 value),
  5. Two cases of Mountain House freeze-dried assorted entrees in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources (a $350 value),
  6. A $250 gift certificate good for any product from Sunflower Ammo,
  7. American Gunsmithing Institute (AGI) is providing a $300 certificate good towards any of their DVD training courses.

Second Prize:

  1. A gift certificate from Quantum Harvest LLC (up to a $2,200 value) good for 12% off the purchase of any of their sun-tracking models, and 10% off the purchase price of any of their other models.
  2. A Front Sight Lifetime Diamond Membership, providing lifetime free training at any Front Sight Nevada course, with no limit on repeating classes. This prize is courtesy of a SurvivalBlog reader who prefers to be anonymous.
  3. A Glock form factor SIRT laser training pistol and a SIRT AR-15/M4 Laser Training Bolt, courtesy of Next Level Training, which have a combined retail value of $589,
  4. A $300 purchase credit for any of the products from EMPShield.com
  5. A Three-Day Deluxe Emergency Kit from Emergency Essentials (a $190 value),
  6. Two 1,000-foot spools of full mil-spec U.S.-made 750 paracord (in-stock colors only) from www.TOUGHGRID.com (a $240 value).
  7. An assortment of products along with a one hour consultation on health and wellness from Pruitt’s Tree Resin (a $265 value).

Third Prize:

  1. Good2GoCo.com is providing a $400 purchase credit at regular prices for the prize winner’s choice of either Wise Foods or Augason long term storage foods, in stackable buckets.
  2. Three sets each of made-in-USA regular and wide-mouth reusable canning lids. (This is a total of 300 lids and 600 gaskets.) This prize is courtesy of Harvest Guard (a $270 value)
  3. A Royal Berkey water filter, courtesy of Directive 21 (a $275 value),
  4. Expanded sets of both washable feminine pads and liners, donated by Naturally Cozy (a $185 retail value),
  5. Two Super Survival Pack seed collections, a $150 value, courtesy of Seed for Security, LLC,
  6. Mayflower Trading is donating a $200 gift certificate for homesteading appliances.

Round 85 ends on November 30th, so get busy writing and e-mail us your entry. Remember that there is a 1,500-word minimum, and that articles on practical “how to” skills for survival have an advantage in the judging.



What Are You Really Preparing For? by B.P.

After a fair number of years being a designated “prepper” and enjoying the heaps of blessings and trials I’ve received, it happens that occasionally I take a tally on my soul and recall the lessons from my life as a disciple in Christ. Now, your mileage may vary depending on the faith, or lack thereof, you have committed yourself to. For me, it was an easy choice to make early in life, as the benefits greatly outweighed the costs (considering an eternity in torment apart from my Creator as the greatest of these). Since making the choice nearly 50 years ago to subscribe to the teachings of a protestant Christian faith, I have only affirmed and reinforced that decision over time, with a lifetime of experiences to support my choice.

As it happens, like many others at the time, I became a solid convert to the prepping mindset circa the turn of the century, when I realized the vulnerability of civilization during the Year 2000 (Y2K) wind-up. But really, it was the desperation of an early adult life in the 1980s and 1990s that set that stage moreso than just the talk of the time, for I had experienced poverty, starvation, and destitution enough by the time I was in my mid-twenties to know the consequences of having to do without. The fact that I also started a family without first securing a decent living only made the apparent that much more painfully obvious. Being responsible for the welfare of others like that can be quite effective at waking the child into real adulthood.

Now, I am counseled in the Word that we should be good stewards of our “Talents”, that when we are provisioned, we have a duty to manage those blessings as the servants we have agreed to become. Therefore, it just seemed prudent to me to stockpile, to learn the skills, and to teach my progeny. Somewhere in there, the quest to improve my provisioning ability led me to seek ever more challenging work assignments, to learn to do things that others couldn’t, or more importantly wouldn’t, and thereby increase my value in the marketplace. While this did require some sacrifices which in retrospect were more expensive than I expected them to be at the time, the end result was, for the most part, the outcome I was looking for.

Now it should be stated that if you are going to pursue such ambitions, you really ought to be partnered with someone who’s outlook is compatible with yours. Sadly, this was not the case in my particular situation, though I didn’t realize it at the time. Thus, much of my accomplishment was squandered, and the risks I undertook meaningless. But that is on me for being naïve and foolish and not making a good choice on picking a mate. However, I stand by decisions, even when they turn into mistakes, and I take my vows seriously, so no crying over spilled milk. It is what it is and that is that.Continue reading“What Are You Really Preparing For? by B.P.”



Economics & Investing For Preppers

Here are the latest news items and commentary on current economics news, market trends, stocks, investing opportunities, and the precious metals markets. We also cover hedges, derivatives, and obscura. Most of these items are from the “tangibles heavy” contrarian perspective of SurvivalBlog’s Founder and Senior Editor, JWR. Today, we look at some possible future classic cars. (See the Tangibles Investing section.)

Precious Metals:

We’ll start out today with this from Gary Christiansen: Gold Stocks Now? Here is a tidbit from his essay:

“Commercial and global central bankers are counterfeiting (legally). This benefits the financial and political elite. Don’t expect this nonsense to change. Commercial bankers and central bankers create more digital dollars to “paper-over” their monetary mess.

Politicians seldom question how creating more debt will correct excessive debt problems. And the game continues.”

 o  o  o

Another Dunagan Kaiser  Reluctant Preppers interview: Nature to Correct Silver, Gold, Food, and the USD — David Morgan

Economy & Finance:

Some fascinating reading, over at Paul Caron’s TaxProf Blog: WSJ: American Consumers Follow Their Politics: Starbucks / ChickfilA, NBA / NASCAR, Levi’s / Wrangler, CNN / Fox News, VW / GMC

o  o  o

At Zero Hedge: Lacalle: The Next Wave of Debt Monetization Will Also Be a Disaster

o  o  o

Linked at the Whatfinger news aggregation site: Bank Collapse In China! $40 Trillion Dollar Debt Heading To Economic Collapse & China’s Yuan Crash.

o  o  o

At Wolf Street: Fear of “Reversal Rates” Sets in, Says the Fed

Continue reading“Economics & Investing For Preppers”



The Editors’ Quote of the Day:

“Many of us have been paying attention for the better part of a decade. Why should I fret or worry about the inevitable results we all knew were coming? The left wants me and everyone like me dead. Fretting won’t solve the issue and voting harder certainly won’t. We have all been gifted with years to sort our lives out, make friends, get harder and more dangerous, and arm ourselves to the teeth. We are in the middle of the golden age of firearms and the average civilian has never had access to this level of quality training and firearms in history. It’s a good day to be alive, so use it wisely.” – “Jesse James”, in an essay titled “So What?”, at American Partisan



Preparedness Notes for Thursday — November 28, 2019

Happy Thanksgiving, America!  Despite our nation’s problems and the ongoing degradation of our liberty, we still have a lot to be thankful for!

On November 28th, 1520, Magellan finally reached the Pacific Ocean after navigating the dangerous straits on the southern tip of South America that now bear his name. He became the first European explorer to reach the Pacific from the Atlantic. Next year will be the 500th anniversary of this event.

SurvivalBlog Writing Contest

Today we present another entry for Round 85 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The more than $12,000 worth of prizes for this round include:

First Prize:

  1. A $3,000 gift certificate towards a Sol-Ark Solar Generator from Veteran owned Portable Solar LLC. The only EMP Hardened Solar Generator System available to the public.
  2. A Gunsite Academy Three Day Course Certificate. This can be used for any one, two, or three day course (a $1,095 value),
  3. A course certificate from onPoint Tactical for the prize winner’s choice of three-day civilian courses, excluding those restricted for military or government teams. Three day onPoint courses normally cost $795,
  4. DRD Tactical is providing a 5.56 NATO QD Billet upper. These have hammer forged, chrome-lined barrels and a hard case, to go with your own AR lower. It will allow any standard AR-type rifle to have a quick change barrel. This can be assembled in less than one minute without the use of any tools. It also provides a compact carry capability in a hard case or in 3-day pack (an $1,100 value),
  5. Two cases of Mountain House freeze-dried assorted entrees in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources (a $350 value),
  6. A $250 gift certificate good for any product from Sunflower Ammo,
  7. American Gunsmithing Institute (AGI) is providing a $300 certificate good towards any of their DVD training courses.

Second Prize:

  1. A gift certificate from Quantum Harvest LLC (up to a $2,200 value) good for 12% off the purchase of any of their sun-tracking models, and 10% off the purchase price of any of their other models.
  2. A Front Sight Lifetime Diamond Membership, providing lifetime free training at any Front Sight Nevada course, with no limit on repeating classes. This prize is courtesy of a SurvivalBlog reader who prefers to be anonymous.
  3. A Glock form factor SIRT laser training pistol and a SIRT AR-15/M4 Laser Training Bolt, courtesy of Next Level Training, which have a combined retail value of $589,
  4. A $300 purchase credit for any of the products from EMPShield.com
  5. A Three-Day Deluxe Emergency Kit from Emergency Essentials (a $190 value),
  6. Two 1,000-foot spools of full mil-spec U.S.-made 750 paracord (in-stock colors only) from www.TOUGHGRID.com (a $240 value).
  7. An assortment of products along with a one hour consultation on health and wellness from Pruitt’s Tree Resin (a $265 value).

Third Prize:

  1. Good2GoCo.com is providing a $400 purchase credit at regular prices for the prize winner’s choice of either Wise Foods or Augason long term storage foods, in stackable buckets.
  2. Three sets each of made-in-USA regular and wide-mouth reusable canning lids. (This is a total of 300 lids and 600 gaskets.) This prize is courtesy of Harvest Guard (a $270 value)
  3. A Royal Berkey water filter, courtesy of Directive 21 (a $275 value),
  4. Expanded sets of both washable feminine pads and liners, donated by Naturally Cozy (a $185 retail value),
  5. Two Super Survival Pack seed collections, a $150 value, courtesy of Seed for Security, LLC,
  6. Mayflower Trading is donating a $200 gift certificate for homesteading appliances.

Round 85 ends on November 30th, so get busy writing and e-mail us your entry. Remember that there is a 1,500-word minimum, and that articles on practical “how to” skills for survival have an advantage in the judging.



Making Lidocaine for Injection, by R.J.

Important Introductory Disclaimer: I am not a licensed health practitioner. This article suggests knowledge and understanding you might wish to acquire in advance of a disaster in case no higher care is available. As long as our society is functioning, you should leave anything more substantial than applying a Band-Aid to the professionals. No medication, including those available over the counter, should be taken without consulting a physician. Preparation of sterile medications by non-professionals should only be attempted in extreme emergencies where there is absolutely no access to commercially-prepared medicines.  Information shared here is for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not medical advice nor a substitute for licensed medical care. 

Lidocaine, as known as lignocaine, is one of those substances that will make TEOTWAWKI a little more bearable. A local anesthetic, it is on the WHO List of Essential Medications. It is available over-the-counter in the form of pain patches, such as those often applied to relieve muscle strains and over-exertion. Topical anesthetic creams with lidocaine are used to alleviate the irritation of contact dermatitis due to poison oak and poison ivy, bug bites and stings, and sunburns. Tattoo creams contain up to 5% lidocaine, the strongest available without a prescription.

Lidocaine also comes in an injectable form in 1 and 2% solutions. It is often, but not always, combined with epinephrine for better anesthesia and to control bleeding. It is an anesthetic used in epidurals, dental procedures, and minor surgery where local and regional anesthetics are appropriate. It is often used to numb the skin around abrasions that need to be cleaned out and lacerations that need to be stitched. The numbing effect generally lasts only about thirty minutes, usually long enough to manage smaller injuries. Lidocaine injections are also used to manage heart arrhythmias and seizures and insert catheters.

Unfortunately, unless you are a physician, you cannot purchase lidocaine for injections. It is not a controlled substance, nor is it illegal to possess. However, the only way you are likely to obtain a vial or two is through a prescription from your physician. [JWR Adds: And doing so must be “within the normal scope of practice” of that particular physician.  So that means that if your doctor is a Wilderness Medicine or Remote Care doctor, then he might be willing to do so, but only if you live in a remote location, of have activities in very remote locales.]  Even if you can get it from him/her, it isn’t going to last forever. So we’re left with the DIY option. Here is one way to do so.Continue reading“Making Lidocaine for Injection, by R.J.”



The Survivalist’s Odds ‘n Sods

SurvivalBlog presents another edition of The Survivalist’s Odds ‘n Sods— a collection of news bits and pieces that are relevant to the modern survivalist and prepper from “JWR”. Our goal is to educate our readers, to help them to recognize emerging threats and to be better prepared for both disasters and negative societal trends. You can’t mitigate a risk if you haven’t first identified a risk. Today, we look at a Milwaukee hermit’s “arsenal.”

The Milwaukee Hermit’s Arsenal

This one at Fox News caught the eye of reader Jim L.: Milwaukee authorities find weapons stash in hermit’s underground bunker in the woods. JWR’s Comment: This small assortment of guns hardly qualifies as an “arsenal”!!!

Uh-Oh: Michael Bloomberg is Running for President

Some troubling news, confirming some earlier rumors, over at CNBC: Mike Bloomberg launches bid for 2020 Democratic presidential nomination. Yes, it will be a “Billionaire Versus Billionaire” race.

I have a few predictions:

  • The mainstream media will downplay his rabid anti-gun position.
  • The mainstream media will tout Bloomberg as “the sensible and reasonable alternative” to the other Dem candidates.
  • Bloomberg will spend more than $150 million from his personal fortune in the campaign.
  • Bloomberg may name fellow New Yorker Hillary Clinton as his running mate, early on.

Why 536 Was ‘The Worst Year To Be Alive’

Reader Dan E. sent this from SlashDotWhy 536 was ‘the worst year to be alive’Continue reading“The Survivalist’s Odds ‘n Sods”





Preparedness Notes for Wednesday — November 27, 2019

November 27th is the birthday of both SurvivalBlog’s Field Gear Editor, Pat Cascio, and sci-fi novelist L. Sprague de Camp (pictured).  De Camp was born in 1907 and died in 2000.

SurvivalBlog Writing Contest

Today we present another entry for Round 85 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The more than $12,000 worth of prizes for this round include:

First Prize:

  1. A $3,000 gift certificate towards a Sol-Ark Solar Generator from Veteran owned Portable Solar LLC. The only EMP Hardened Solar Generator System available to the public.
  2. A Gunsite Academy Three Day Course Certificate. This can be used for any one, two, or three day course (a $1,095 value),
  3. A course certificate from onPoint Tactical for the prize winner’s choice of three-day civilian courses, excluding those restricted for military or government teams. Three day onPoint courses normally cost $795,
  4. DRD Tactical is providing a 5.56 NATO QD Billet upper. These have hammer forged, chrome-lined barrels and a hard case, to go with your own AR lower. It will allow any standard AR-type rifle to have a quick change barrel. This can be assembled in less than one minute without the use of any tools. It also provides a compact carry capability in a hard case or in 3-day pack (an $1,100 value),
  5. Two cases of Mountain House freeze-dried assorted entrees in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources (a $350 value),
  6. A $250 gift certificate good for any product from Sunflower Ammo,
  7. American Gunsmithing Institute (AGI) is providing a $300 certificate good towards any of their DVD training courses.

Second Prize:

  1. A gift certificate from Quantum Harvest LLC (up to a $2,200 value) good for 12% off the purchase of any of their sun-tracking models, and 10% off the purchase price of any of their other models.
  2. A Front Sight Lifetime Diamond Membership, providing lifetime free training at any Front Sight Nevada course, with no limit on repeating classes. This prize is courtesy of a SurvivalBlog reader who prefers to be anonymous.
  3. A Glock form factor SIRT laser training pistol and a SIRT AR-15/M4 Laser Training Bolt, courtesy of Next Level Training, which have a combined retail value of $589,
  4. A $300 purchase credit for any of the products from EMPShield.com
  5. A Three-Day Deluxe Emergency Kit from Emergency Essentials (a $190 value),
  6. Two 1,000-foot spools of full mil-spec U.S.-made 750 paracord (in-stock colors only) from www.TOUGHGRID.com (a $240 value).
  7. An assortment of products along with a one hour consultation on health and wellness from Pruitt’s Tree Resin (a $265 value).

Third Prize:

  1. Good2GoCo.com is providing a $400 purchase credit at regular prices for the prize winner’s choice of either Wise Foods or Augason long term storage foods, in stackable buckets.
  2. Three sets each of made-in-USA regular and wide-mouth reusable canning lids. (This is a total of 300 lids and 600 gaskets.) This prize is courtesy of Harvest Guard (a $270 value)
  3. A Royal Berkey water filter, courtesy of Directive 21 (a $275 value),
  4. Expanded sets of both washable feminine pads and liners, donated by Naturally Cozy (a $185 retail value),
  5. Two Super Survival Pack seed collections, a $150 value, courtesy of Seed for Security, LLC,
  6. Mayflower Trading is donating a $200 gift certificate for homesteading appliances.

Round 85 ends on November 30th, so get busy writing and e-mail us your entry. Remember that there is a 1,500-word minimum, and that articles on practical “how to” skills for survival have an advantage in the judging.



Our Prepping Journey – Part 2, by Elli O.

(Continued from Part 1. This concludes the article.)

Resources:

I found it quite helpful to have books at home that cover raising, dispatching (killing), and processing livestock. The internet is useful but nothing beats a written guide when the internet is unavailable.

Lessons learned from having livestock:
  1. Remember the reason for raising the livestock. They are not pets; they are food for the family. The first cute calves we brought home were named Lunch and Dinner, which served as a reminder to all that these bottle fed babies would someday be on our supper plates.
  2. Animals get sick and die. Be prepared both emotionally and physically to deal with this.
  3. There’s no such thing as a “free” animal. They will all need to eat and need medical attention- both of which cost money!
Organizing it all

I try to simplify things in order to remember so when it comes to prepping I try to divide supplies into 7 different categories. Yes, many say that this is an over-simplification, but it works for me. Below are the 7 categories I use.

  1. Food
  2. Water
  3. Heat
  4. Light
  5. Safety
  6. Security
  7. Sanitation

These categories can be subdivided as needed, but they were a good place to start for me.

As I began filling in these categories, I would see voids- areas that were greatly lacking. Some of these voids were higher dollar items such as generators or hand pumps for the well. Rather than go into debt purchasing these items (remember our low debt tolerance?) we would save up for them.

After much research we recently purchased a solar generator that can also run off of a wind turbine. This $1,500 purchase will help many areas but mainly keep our freezers and refrigerator going in a grid-down situation.

Also when prepping for our family, we have to prep for our animals (both livestock and pets) in the way of feed and medicine.

I have found that filling in the voids can be a fun adventure by attending auctions. We recommend using auctionzip.com to find possible used items of value. Some of my cheapest buys from an auction have been the following items:

  • Over 100 candles for under $10
  • Kitchen hand tools (non-electric kind)
  • Used water troughs for $20 each
  • Pressure cooker for $5

And many other useful items!Continue reading“Our Prepping Journey – Part 2, by Elli O.”



JWR’s Recommendations of the Week:

Here are JWR’s Recommendations of the Week for various media and tools of interest to SurvivalBlog readers. The focus is usually on emergency communications gear, bug out bag gear, books and movies–often with a tie-in to disaster preparedness, and links to “how to” self-sufficiency videos. There are also links to sources for both storage food and storage containers. You will also note an emphasis on history books and historical movies. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This week the focus is on the SIG-Sauer Whiskey 3 Riflescope. (See the Gear & Grub section.)

Books:

Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat: Mastering the Elements of Good Cooking

o  o  o

Mauser Military Rifles of the World. (A good reference book, for anyone who is considering collecting Mausers.)

o  o  o

Sixguns by Keith: The Standard Reference Work

o  o  o

Dark Agenda: The War to Destroy Christian America

o  o  o

Saddles. (A great reference book.)