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Sunday, March 29, 2009

Out of town

I'm out of town for a few days doing some repairs and reno's at my Brother's.

Postings will resume later this week or as time permits.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Friendly Reminder...

Come January remember a few small things to ensure your families safety:

1.) Check/change/test all smoke detectors. Change the batteries and test functionality.

2.) Clean the dryer vent if you have a dryer in your house.

3.) Change the furnace filters.

4.) Do a visual walk around of your place. Pay particular attention to the foundation, windows, doors, utility boxes, outdoor outlets. Give everything a thorough once over. Make sure everything is as it should be and there is no rot, insect damage or any other potential issues.

5.) Go into your attic (if you have one) and visually inspect your roof from the inside. This will help you catch leaks before they turn into real headaches.

6.) Check your water heater/furnace/AC units and make sure they are all in good shape and clean them up a bit if needed. Check for leaks and if you live in a cold climate put insulation on your water heater to save some cash.

7.) Check your vehicles tires and make sure there is tread left and the tires are in good shape and not in need of replacing.

8.) If you have water storage I usually empty and refill once a year. If you don't want to empty and refill, toss a few drops of bleach into the water (amount varies by water volume).

9.) If you have a cat or dog schedule their rabies booster with your vet.

10.) If you have any gasoline stored add some Sta-bil to keep it fresh. Be careful how much you store...also pull out that generator and start her up if she hasn't been used in a while to make sure she works when you need her.

...that is all.


Inventory Check: Baby Wipes

Here's today's reminder to check your inventory of: baby wipes!

Baby wipes are NOT just for the little behinds of babies. They are great for other things, like a quick "sponge bath", washing faces after a messy meal, washing hands before a meal, and so many other things. We even use them to clean our dogs' faces in between baths - especially that eye gunk that discolors their fur.

Think about this: what if something happens and you're unable to take a bath or shower for a couple of days? If you have a couple of boxes of baby wipes, you'll be just fine. One wipe can go a long way.

We buy the Wal-Mart brand "Parents Choice", a box at a time. Each box has about 648 wipes, which is more than enough to last through even several weeks worth of confinement.

There are always two extra boxes in our storage, and one in use. That's for a family of three (plus 2 dogs). Examine your needs.


Get Involved

Originally posted on The ReadyStore Blog


Get Involved

I often ask parents what their child’s school emergency plan is and I am shocked that most parents don’t know if the school has one, never mind what the safety plan actually is. The same goes for the workplace. Do you have a safety plan at your place of employment? If your school or work doesn’t have a plan, volunteer to help set one up.

Does your city have an emergency plan based in scenarios most likely to occur in your area? If not, go to a city council meeting and bring it to the attention of the mayor and city council. Coordinate with the police and fire chiefs to help your city develop a realistic plan to help all its citizens. You will need to take into account the various businesses such as nursing homes and preschools to make sure that everyone is accounted for and assisted to the level they need.

Talk to your neighbors about their plans and what assistance they may need. Partner with a friend so that if you aren’t home when a situation occurs that she will care for your children and commit to do the same for her children. You can lessen the impact the disasters will have on you by taking the tine to get involved in planning for the inevitable.


Gardening: Kitchen Composting

What is Composting? It's when one-living things (plants, eggshells, leaves, grass, etc.) decompose to make "healthy dirt" - full of minerals and good things to make plants grow when added to soil. It's also a way to help save the earth: recycle yard and kitchen waste, and reduce what gets put to the curb to taken to landfills. Very necessary when doing container gardening, lasagna gardening, square foot gardening, and more.

What should be Composted? Here's a good alphabetized list:
-Aquarium Plants
-Bird cage or other vegetarian pet wastes
-Bread, stale
-Burned oats, rice, bread, etc.
-Cardboard & cereal boxes (shredded)
-Cereal and chips, stale or soggy
-Coconut fiber
-Coffee grounds
-Corncobs (chop to help decompose)
-Cotton and Cotton Swabs (no plastic)
-Dead bees, flies, mosquitoes, etc.
-Dried flower heads/leftovers from prunings
-Egg shells (rinse)
-Fruit peelings
-Glue, Elmer’s
-Grass clippings
-Hair, pet or human
-Houseplants, dead
-Kitchen waste: old salad, cheese, greens, fruit, veggies, bread, rice, pasta, etc.
-Lint from dryer, behind refrigerator
-Liquid from canned fruits/veggies, old wine, old beer
-Matches (paper or wood)
-Nail clippings (fingernail, toenail, dog nails, etc.)
-Newspapers, shredded
-Nut shells (no salty ones)
-Onion and garlic skins
-Outdated spices or herbs
-Paper napkins, notes, towels, junk mail, tissues, receipts, paper bags
-Pasta, old
-Pencil Shavings
-Pine needles
-Pits, olive/date/cherry/etc
-Popcorn (unpopped or popped)
-Potato peelings or stale potato chips
-Razor trimmings (beard, mustache)
-Rotted vegetables, fruits
-Shells (shrimp, crab, lobster, etc.)
-Soil, from the yardStraw, hay, wheat, bark
-Sweepings: Whatever you sweet or dust-mop up or vacuum up
-Tea bags, used
-Vegetable peelings
-Watermelon rinds
-Wood chips, ashes, saw-dust

Can Composting be done Inside? Yep. Not everybody has a backyard to compost. No problem... there are other ways to compost in even just your kitchen! We took a plastic gallon milk (or water!) jug, and cut a hole near the top, opposite side of the handle. Place in the fridge. Add things from list above. Then we have two small sealable trash cans just outside our kitchen door that we add potting soil, our scraps from the fridge-jug, and worms when we can find them. Mix it around every 60 days or so. Add to indoor planters after it's become dirt!

There are also actual countertop or other kitchen composters you can buy. Here's a few links:

Happy Composting!


Interesting Home Remedies

The more I read about home remedies, herbal remedies, simple kitchen medicines, the more impressed I am by all the "old wives" who came up with this stuff. I've been trying them out all winter, and I've been very pleased with the results, i.e., they worked, they're effective. These remedies are inexpensive, use easy to come by items (for the most part), and can by done by anyone.

In the upcoming depression, when I am sure the Powers That Be will leave us all high and dry, except when they're desperately trying to get us to do silly, stupid, and dangerous things (like vaccinations and flu shots), we will have to learn to rely on simple and cheap methods of taking care of ourselves. We are learning more and more about nutrition and how the body works to heal itself. These simple treatments work with the body, not against it. That's a big selling point as far as I'm concerned.

Here are some of the treatments I've tried that worked for me. As the saying goes, your mileage may vary. Not every remedy will work for every person. So take what makes sense to you, try it out. Try not to be negative if it doesn't work--simply move on to something else.

For Colds and Flu

Slice up garlic and place the slices on the bottoms of your feet (not an easy thing to accomplish, btw). What I did was place some plastic wrap on the floor, put the garlic slices on the plastic wrap, put my foot down on top of the slices and wrapped the plastic around my foot. I left this on overnight and discarded the garlic in the morning. And yes, I felt much better the next day. Not completely healed, but much better.

Vicks VapoRub also worked and felt very calming and soothing. Felt better the next day and the skin on my feet was very soft.

Here's another one for cold/flu/respitory problems:

Cold Wet Socks Therapy

What's that you say? Cold, wet socks? For what?

This is the first time I've heard of it. I was reading around the herbal blogs (and there are a lot of excellent ones--for another post) and found this fascinating idea. I found it at Herbalist Liza Zahn's website. If you have a stubborn cold or flu, you put on a pair of cold, wet cotton socks. Over them you put on warm, dry wool socks and then hop into bed. When you wake in the morning, your body will have had to overcome the coldness and wetness by working overtime...

I'm not explaining it well. Read about it at Liza's page. It makes perfect sense to me, and it is using your body's own power to heal, which I like.

I'm not about to snafu myself again by saying I don't get colds or flu. Next time one jumps me though, I will try the cold, wet sock therapy.

Post-Nasal Drip/Sinus Infection

OK, I did do this one, and boy did it work! And kept working! It got rid of the problem completely for at least a week. Then the infection started in again, but a repeat of the treatment kicked its ass again. Here's my earlier post about it.

I put a dropper full of Hydrogen Peroxide in a 2 oz medicine bottle (the eye-dropper kind you get herb tinctures in), then added a pinch of sea salt, a pinch of baking soda and a pinch of powdered cayenne pepper. I put 2 droppers full into one nostril, then bent over and rolled my head around, trying to get the stuff to all areas of my sinuses. Ditto with the other nostril. By this time my eyes were watering and my nasal passages were exploding... I can't say it was fun. I did 2 more droppers full to each nostril, repeatedly blowing my nose (gently) throughout. I had to keep blowing my nose for about a half and hour. And yes, it stung. It was weird.

But it worked. The infection disappeared.

I could have gone to my doctor, paid about $75 for the doctor's visit, got a prescription for antibiotics maybe or maybe for some other drugs, paid more money for those, and after two weeks still have been miserable and miserably out-of-pocket, with the added disaster of having to rebuild my immune system and all the good bacteria in my system.

There's a website called the Skeptic Detective, which nicely points out logical fallacies and demands double-blind scientific studies for home remedies. It makes for interesting reading, but let's face it. Doing large double-blind studies for something that can't be patented (like garlic) and thus profited by just isn't going to happen. No one could or would spend the money to do those kinds of studies. The Skeptic Detective also pooh poohs anecdotal evidence, or demands "scientific" evidence. However, as one commentor says: she tried it, it worked, and that's all the evidence she requires. Or, one can always say "it's the placebo effect" and that may be true too. In which case, hurrah for the placebo effect. Our minds, our thoughts, have a big effect on the body (which is why the placebo effect works). We might as well use it for our benefit.

In my case, I'll try something even if I doubt it could possibly work. I've done that before and been pleasantly surprised when it did work. It is always good to question, and a dose of skepticism is not a bad thing at all.

However, in my opinion, allopathic medicine and so-called "objective science" is failing so abjectly when it comes to helping with chronic diseases, or the biases are so obviously towards pharmaceutical "medicines" that it makes me question their treatments. Giving patients poison for cancer isn't helpful. We've had years of chemotherapy and radiation now and it is ineffective for one, and it drastically harms the patient. Why? Why is it still used? Follow the money trail and you will find out why.

Ach, that's a whole other realm of discussion and posting. Suffice it to say that I think there is a lot of good in simple home remedies, most remedies are cheap, using simple things you already have in your kitchen, and they're easy to do for yourself.

I have always used home remedies, I think most people do. We don't always tell other people for fear of being called names, made fun of, put down as idiots. Well, I go by "prove all things." If it works for me, it works. I might like to know how and why it works, but if I don't, I'm still fine with it.

Anyway, these are a few that have worked for me. In my view, it's definitely worth looking into, researching a bit, finding what might work for you and your particular problem, and taking action. Be in charge of your own health care. That's progress, by damn.


The value of a cell phone for survivalists

By Joseph Parish

Cell phones can be a functional tool when united with your survivalist efforts. In my family we all have our own cell phones. Several are not formally turned on meaning that there is no time on them or they are not connected to any sort of network, but these phones still perform as a 911 relay. Many people are unaware that a non-connected cell phone can contact 911. The phone may not be able to summon your sister down the road or Aunt May residing across the country but each and every cell phone can call 911 if it is properly charged.

In the past when I had a conventional form of employment the cell phone was a versatile addition which saved us substantial time and money. If my wife realized that we needed something from the market all she had to do was provide me with a quick call.

In the past two months I have not experienced great luck towards locating another vehicle. The first one broke down on me within a week of signing the contract for it. Without the cell phone I would have been waiting for hours pending someone realizing that I was not at my planned point when I should have been. Instead I merely called road service and they were at my side within 45 minutes.

The second car was a conversion van and the previous owner failed to inform me that the gas line system was all rusted and after so many miles the van would immediately stop functioning. You can readily see the value of the cell phone in this case. Unfortunately, in these modern days we can not anticipate strangers stopping to offer assistance considering our nations increased crime rate.

In evaluating the benefits associated with a cell phone on the homestead, let’s consider for a moment that you fall and injure your ankle some distance from you cabin. You simply can not make it back to the porch and if you have a cell phone with you all you will need to do is make a quick phone call. Otherwise it is very likely that you could be sitting there waiting for an extended period of time.

You don’t have to spend a vast sum of capital for decent cell phone as you can effortlessly obtain pre-paid phones for less then $20.00. This is a small investment when you consider the safety of owning one. Your monthly upkeep on your cell phone could be as low as $10.00 according to how much you use it.

In regards to children having a cell phone. I am all for that concept. Even if the phone is only capable of calling 911 it provides you with a sense of satisfaction knowing that your child is always able to ask for emergency help if it was necessary. I know many schools have banned cell phones however I feel that as long as they are turned off they could easily be used in the event of an emergency. Think of the possible lives that could have been saved in many of the recent school massacres had the children had cell phones.

Copyright @ 2009 Joseph Parish


The Fabulous Dent-de-lion

By Joseph Parish

Before long this cold spell of winter will be departing and the warm air of spring will start to come in. Along with the warmth that the season change will bring we will also see an abundance of lovely little flowers begin to pop up on our lawn and yards. These yellow spots are nothing more then small dandelion plants.

The dandelion is a perennial plant that is generally considered a nuisance and a pest. Many home owners attack the plants with a vengeance spraying plant killer on each and every one they see. These herbaceous plants have long, lance-shaped leaves from which it derives its French name of Dent-de-lion which means lion's tooth. Its leaves are generally about three to twelve inches long and approximately 1/2 to 2-1/2 inches wide.

The plant has multiple uses such as the beautiful yellow flowers make some excellent dandelion wine while you can create some flavorful salads with the greens. The dandelion leaves are usually at their best when you sow them young. Get them as they first emerge. The nice thing about dandelions is that there is no chance what-so-ever of confusing it with another plant. There simply are no poisonous look a like that resemble the dandelion.

Although most of the people generally like to discourage the growth of the dandelion the plants were actually introduced into the Midwest from Europe in order to provide food for cultured honeybees during the early springtime. From this humble start the dandelion has now spread worldwide. As mentioned most gardeners tend to detest these pretty yellow flowers and due to its deep taproot the more they try to weed them out the faster they tend to grow.

If you plan to use dandelions as a food supplement you should collect your dandelion leaves in the early spring months. This is the time of the year when they are the tastiest. Be sure to grab them prior to the flower appearing on the stems. You can harvest your wild crop again in the late fall. To eat these broad leaves you should select only the youngest of the plants and above all avoid those with flowers as these are the bitterest of the bunch. Some true dandelions fans will eat the greens from early spring on up to the late fall months. If all else fails you can always boil the bitterness out of the leaves.

Dandelion greens are traditionally eaten in salads or sautéed or even steamed. They often display a chicory type of taste with a little bit of bitter tinge. Today most people do not care for the bitter taste of the dandelions however in past years the people had developed the ability to distinguish between a good and a bad bitter taste. We are now accustomed to the added sugar and salts in our foods and can not readily do this today.

One simple way to prepare the dandelion is to sauté them for approximately 20 minutes with some onions and a pinch of garlic. Use olive oil and as they cook you may add some wine to the pan just before they are completed their cooking cycle. They can be cooked with some sliced carrots to cut any of the bitterness from the plants.

Most of the plant is useable. You can eat the leaves and the flowers, you can use the flowers to create wine and you can dry the root and grind it to create a coffee like drink. I will cover the coffee drink in another article. As a final added attraction I would like to describe how to make some Cream of Dandelion soup.


4 cups of chopped dandelion greens

2 cups of yellow dandelion petals

2 cups of dandelion buds

1 Tablespoon of butter

1 cup of chopped wild leek

6 cloves of minced garlic

4 cups of water

2 cups of heavy cream

2 teaspoons of salt

To start you will need to gently boil the dandelion leaves in six cups of water. After a while pour off the bitter water and boil a second time. Once again pour off the bitter water.

In a large soup pot sauté the wild leek and the garlic in the butter until it becomes tender. Now add the four cups of water. Next place the dandelion leaves, petals and buds into the mixture. Add salt to your liking and simmer gently for approximately 45 minutes.

Finally add the cream and continue to simmer for a few minutes more. Upon serving you can garnish your soup with some dandelion flower petals. There you have it and I certainly hope that you enjoy this soup.

Copyright @ 2009 Joseph Parish


Herbal Substitutes for Common Pharmaceuticals

From: When Technology Fails: A Manual for Self-Reliance, Sustainability, and Surviving the Long Emergency by Matthew Stein

From a chapter titled When High-Tech Medicine Fails

(In the book, this is a chart with columns, but I can’t do that here. Please bear with the list instead. I have read of some of the uses for herbs, and others are new to me in their usage for a particular ailment. Just FYI.)

Herbal Substitutes for common pharmaceuticals

Ailment: Acne
Pharmaceutical: Retin-A, tetracycline
Herbal options: tea tree oil (external), calendula

Ailment: Allergies
Pharmaceutical: Synthetic antihistamines
Herbal options: Garlic, stinging nettles, Ginkgo bilboa

Ailment: Anxiety
Pharmaceutical: Ativan, Xanax, Klonopin
Herbal options: Hops, kava-kava, valerian

Ailment: Arithitic pain
Pharmaceutical: Tylenol and other NSAIDs
Herbal options: Cayenne (external), celery seed, ginger, tumeric

Ailment: Athlete's foot
Pharmaceutical: Griseofulvin
Herbal options: Tea tree oil, garlic, coffee grounds (all external)

Ailment: Boils
Pharmaceutical: Erythromycin
Herbal options: Tea tree oil, slippery elm (both external)

Ailment: Body odor
Pharmaceutical: common deoderants
Herbal options: coriander, sage

Ailment: BPH (benign prostatic hyperplasia)
Pharmaceutical: Hytrin, Proscar
Herbal options: Saw palmetto, evening primrose, stinging nettle, pygeum africanum, Serona repens

Ailment: Bronchitis
Pharmaceutical: Atropine
Herbal options: Echinacea, garlic

Ailment: Bruises
Pharmaceutical: Analgesics
Herbal options: Arnica, St. John's wort, yarrow, plantain (all external)

Ailment: Burns
Pharmaceutical: Silvadene cream
Herbal options: Aloe vera gel (external), calendula

Ailment: Colds
Pharmaceutical: Decongestants
Herbal options: Echinacea, ginger, lemon balm, garlic

Ailment: Constipation
Pharmaceutical: Laxatives
Herbal options: Flaxseed, psyllium, cascara sagrada

Ailment: Cuts, Scrapes, Abscesses
Pharmaceutical: Topical antibiotics
Herbal options: Tea tree oil, calendula, plantain, garlic (all external)

Ailment: Depression (mild)
Pharmaceutical: Prozac, Elavil, Trazodone, Zoloft
Herbal options: St. John's wort

Ailment: Diarrhea
Pharmaceutical: Imodium, Lomotil
Herbal options: Bilberry, raspberry

Ailment: Dysmenorrhea (painful menstruation)
Pharmaceutical: Naprosyn
Herbal options: Kava-kava, raspberry

Ailment: Earache
Pharmaceutical: Antibiotics
Herbal options: Echinacea, garlic, mullein

Ailment: Eczema (itchy rash)
Pharmaceutical: Corticosteroids
Herbal options: Chamomile

Ailment: Atopic eczema (allergy-related rash)
Pharmaceutical: corticosteroids, sedatives, antihistamines
Herbal options: Evening primrose

Ailment: Flu
Pharmaceutical: Tylenol
Herbal options: Echinacea, elderberry

Ailment: Gas
Pharmaceutical: Mylanta, Gaviscon, Simethicone
Herbal options: Dill, fennel, peppermint

Ailment: Gingivitis (gum inflammation)
Pharmaceutical: Peridex
Herbal options: Chamomile, echinacea, sage

Ailment: Halitosis (bad breath)
Pharmaceutical: Listerine
Herbal options: Cardamom, parsley, peppermint

Ailment: Hay fever
Pharmaceutical: Antihistamines, decongestants
Herbal options: stinging nettle

Ailment: Headache
Pharmaceutical: Aspirin, other NSAIDs
Herbal options: Peppermint (external), feverfew, willow bark

Ailment: Heartburn
Pharmaceutical: Pepto-Bismol, Tums
Herbal options: Angelica, chamomile, peppermint

Ailment: Hemorrhoids
Pharmaceutical: Tucks
Herbal options: Plantain, witch hazel, calendula (all external)

Ailment: Hepatitis
Pharmaceutical: Interferon
Herbal options: Dandelion, milk thistle, tumeric

Ailment: Herpes
Pharmaceutical: Acyclovir
Herbal options: Lemon balm

Ailment: High cholesterol
Pharmaceutical: Mevacor
Herbal options: Garlic

Ailment: Hives
Pharmaceutical: Benadryl
Herbal options: Stinging nettle

Ailment: Indigestion
Pharmaceutical: Antacids, Reglan
Herbal options: Chamomile, ginger, peppermint

Ailment: Insomnia
Pharmaceutical: Halcion, Ativan
Herbal options: Chamomile, hops, lemon balm, valerian, evening primrose, kava-kava

Ailment: Irregularity
Pharmaceutical: Metamucil
Herbal options: Flaxseed, plantain, senna psyllium

Ailment: Lower back pain
Pharmaceutical: Aspirin, analgesics
Herbal options: Cayenne (external), thyme

Ailment: Male pattern baldness
Pharmaceutical: Rogaine
Herbal options: Saw palmetto

Ailment: Migraine
Pharmaceutical: Cafergot, Sumatriptan, Verapamil
Herbal options: Feverfew

Ailment: Motion sickness
Pharmaceutical: Dramamine
Herbal options: Ginger

Ailment: Nail fungus
Pharmaceutical: Ketoconazole
Herbal options: Tea tree oil, garlic (both external)

Ailment: Night blindness
Pharmaceutical: Vitamin A
Herbal options: Bilberry

Ailment: PMS
Pharmaceutical: NSAIDs, diuretics, analgesics
Herbal options: Chaste tree, evening primrose

Ailment: Rhinitis (nasal inflammation)
Pharmaceutical: Cromolyn, Vancenase
Herbal options: Echinacea

Ailment: Shingles
Pharmaceutical: Acyclovir
Herbal options: Cayenne (external), lemon balm

Ailment: Sprain
Pharmaceutical: NSAIDs
Herbal options: Arnica, calendula

Ailment: Stress
Pharmaceutical: Diazepam
Herbal options: Kava-kava, valerian

Ailment: Tinnitus (ringing ears)
Pharmaceutical: Steroids
Herbal options: Ginkgo

Ailment: Toothache
Pharmaceutical: NSAIDs
Herbal options: Cloves, willow bark

Ailment: Urinary tract infection
Pharmaceutical: Sulfa drugs
Herbal options: Cranberry, stinging nettle

Ailment: Vaginitis
Pharmaceutical: Clindamycin, Flagyl
Herbal options: Garlic, goldenseal

*NSAIDs are nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs

Source: adapted from "Nature's Medicine--The Green Pharmacy" by James A. Duke, Ph.D., Mother Earth News (December/January 2000), pp. 22-33).

I have Duke's The Green Pharmacy, which I'll be reviewing one of these days. He's a real expert on herbs, so this is probably a pretty good list. You'll have to do a bit of research on what to do with the herbs, i.e., tea or extract, how to apply if external, but now you have the list.




Quote of the Day

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Be A Survivor: New Years Resolutions...

Damn, did 2008 fly by quickly...seems like just yesterday I started this blog and now we are going pretty strong 7 months and 200+ posts later. I figured I would share some of the New Year's resolutions I am going to try and make for the 2009 year. I do believe it is important to at least to TRY to make yourself better at some point in your why not start fresh with a new year?

1.) Get myself in better shape - I am by no means a tub o' lard. I am 6'2" and just at 238 lbs. I do take cholesterol medicine...but that is it. I really want to get back into running a few miles daily. My resolution is to get serious about getting back to my fighting weight of 212 lbs. and running 2-3 miles a day.

2.) SAVE EVEN MORE money - My wife and I are pretty good with money. We have a mortgage and 2 car payments and no other debt. We are close to paying off her car - THAT WILL BE DONE ASAP, after that we will pay my truck off. I want to have just my mortgage by the end of 2010. NO SHIT, excuses or any other kind of will be done.

3.) Quit smoking - actually cheated on this one. We were gonna quit in January but said we had enough in October and quit cold I am ahead of the game on this one ;)

4.) Prep, prep, prep - my goal this year is to get a few more cases of ammo and a few more cases of MRE's to suppliment what I have already. I also want to implement a rainwater collection system at the house (priority number 1!!!). Lastly I want to pick up a GOOD water filter and a Remington 870 or a Mossberg 500 shotgun.

5.) Because my post on taking things here and there generated so many "Mother Theresa" types I pledge to "steal" even more ketchup and salt packets from all those hard working restauranteurs! Just kidding on that one ;)

REAL #5 - To try an keep blogging as often as I can, to entertain and inform you with the meager knowledge I have on any subject I write about.

Good luck and God Bless in the new year...2009 here we come!!!

...that is all.



Originally posted on The ReadyStore Blog



Doing inventory can help you use your resources more effectively when you are preparing for emergencies through emergency preparedness and food storage. Do you buy the same things over and over while other sections of your preparation are lacking? Do you have a dozen emergency blankets, but not a first aid kit? Do you have a way to heat your home, but no plans for sanitation?

The best way to do an inventory is to sit down and pull everything out. I know this may seem like a daunting task, but if you don’t know what you have, you don’t know what you need. I did this recently with my sister and brother-in-law. While they were pleasantly surprised by the amount of things they had in their 72-hour kits, they found they were lacking in some areas. They had a portable potty lid and bags, but needed toilet chemicals. They had several tools, but no matches and no 115 hour Ready candles.

Once you know what you need, you can break it down into categories such as light and communication, food storage, first aid, etc. Then you can figure out what you need in each area and make a plan to acquire those items. With a little time and effort, you can make sure you are ready for whatever circumstances you may encounter in an emergency situation.


No Safe Place?

For those of you who would like a little insight on a real life scenario of when things go bad this article has some very enlightening information of what may be in store for all of us.

Frugal's Forums Archive 2001-2006: Thoughts on Urban Survival. COMPLETE !! A MUST READ FOR ALL SQUIRRELS!!!

Read the entire article to get a true picture. Here is an excerpt from this article:


“Someone once asked me how did those that live in the country fare. If they were better off than city dwellers. As always there are no simple answers. Wish I could say country good, city bad, but I can’t, because if I have to be completely honest, and I intend to be so, there are some issues that have to be analyzed, especially security. Of course that those that live in the country and have some land and animals were better prepared food-wise. No need to have several acres full of crops. A few fruit trees, some animals, such as chickens, cows and rabbits, and a small orchard was enough to be light years ahead of those in the cities. Chickens, eggs and rabbits would provide the proteins, a cow or two for milk and cheese, some vegetables and fruit plants covered the vegetable diet, and some eggs or a rabbit could be traded for flower to make bread and pasta or sugar and salt.

Of course that there are exceptions, for example, some provinces up north have desert climate and it almost never rains. It is almost impossible to live of the land, and animals require food and water you have to buy. Those guys had it bad; no wonder the Northern provinces suffer the most in my country. Those that live in cities, well they have to manage as they can. Since food prices went up about 200%-300%. People would cut expenses wherever they could so they could buy food. Some ate whatever they could; they hunted birds or ate street dogs and cats, others starved. When it comes to food, cities suck in a crisis. It is usually the lack of food or the impossibility to acquire it that starts the rioting and looting when TSHTF.

When it comes to security things get even more complicated. Forget about shooting those that mean you harm from 300 yards away with your MBR. Leave that notion to armchair commandos and 12 year old kids that pretend to be grown ups on the internet.

Some facts:

1) Those that want to harm you/steal from you don’t come with a pirate flag waving over their heads.

2) Neither do they start shooting at you 200 yards away.

3) They won’t come riding loud bikes or dressed with their orange, convict just escaped from prison jump suits, so that you can identify them the better. Nor do they all wear chains around their necks and leather jackets. If I had a dollar for each time a person that got robbed told me “They looked like NORMAL people, dressed better than we are”, honestly, I would have enough money for a nice gun. There are exceptions, but don’t expect them to dress like in the movies.

4) A man with a wife and two or three kids can’t set up a watch. I don’t care if you are SEAL, SWAT or John Freaking Rambo, no 6th sense is going to tell you that there is a guy pointing a gun at your back when you are trying to fix the water pump that just broke, or carrying a big heavy bag of dried beans you bought that morning.

The best alarm system anyone can have in a farm are dogs. But dogs can get killed and poisoned. A friend of mine had all four dogs poisoned on his farm one night, they all died. After all these years I learned that even though the person that lives out in the country is safer when it comes to small time robberies, that same person is more exposed to extremely violent home robberies. Criminals know that they are isolated and their feeling of invulnerability is boosted. When they assault a country home or farm, they will usually stay there for hours or days torturing the owners. I heard it all: women and children getting raped, people tied to the beds and tortured with electricity, beatings, burned with acetylene torches. Big cities aren’t much safer for the survivalist that decides to stay in the city. He will have to face express kidnappings, robberies, and pretty much risking getting shot for what’s in his pockets or even his clothes.

So, where to go? The concrete jungle is dangerous and so is living away from it all, on your own. The solution is to stay away from the cities but in groups, either by living in a small town-community or sub division, or if you have friends or family that think as you do, form your own small community. Some may think that having neighbors within “shouting” distance means loosing your privacy and freedom, but it’s a price that you have to pay if you want to have someone to help you if you ever need it. To those that believe that they will never need help from anyone because they will always have their rifle at hand, checking the horizon with their scope every five minutes and a first aid kit on their back packs at all times…. Grow up”

Thanks D!

Be aware. Be informed. Be prepared.



Survival Health–Keep Pepto in Your Med Kit

Bill Sardi, who writes the “Knowledge of Health” newsletter, says we’re facing a much bigger problem with food borne illness than the media is telling us. Peanut butter isn’t the sole culprit. Sardi reminds us that in recent times lettuce and other vegetables have been determined to have been contaminated with Salmonella or E. coli. He observes that these bacterium generally come from animal waste and water runoff from cattle herds which contaminates nearby farms. Then the vegetable growers get blamed. Sardi alleges that the U.S. Department of Agriculture is likely protecting business interests and letting some food producers off the hook.

Sardi states that the most likely source of Salmonella contamination is chicken meat. He says about one-quarter of chickens sold in U.S. grocery stores are believed to be contaminated with salmonella bacteria. The recommendation for consumers is to cook chicken very well before eating it.

Salmonella is a bacterium that causes abdominal cramping, fever, nausea, and diarrhea. Sardi urges purchasing Pepto-Bismol (bismuth), and at the first onset of symptoms, begin coating the lining of your stomach repeatedly, every hour. Sardi says this is especially important for younger children and older adults. He claims the cure is rapid and effective. Because symptoms can occur wherever you may be—work, away from home, etc.—it’s wise to have plenty of Pepto-Bismol on hand and be prepared.

Bill Sardi is a proponent of alternative medicine, so I view his recommendation to take Pepto-Bismol as a pragmatic approach to a serious health issue. I suggest having Pepto-Bismol in your survival med kit. Pepto-Bismol is a tried and true remedy for stomach ailments over many decades. It does not have to be refrigerated. However, it should not be allowed to freeze. You may wish to have it on hand in tablet form. If you don’t like the taste of the original Pepto-Bismol, it’s available in cherry flavor. You should also be aware that labeling has been changed to recommend users consult a doctor about dosage for children under 12.

If you’re interested in knowing more of what Bill Sardi has to say on health matters, you can sign up for his newsletter at


Survival Barter Items - Part Two

With a weakening dollar, rising unemployment, and businesses going bankrupt and closing their doors in record numbers, barter may become a real part of your everyday life. Skill and knowledge in how to barter during an economic collapse could become a critical skill that everyone will need to survive.

In Part One of Survival Barter Items it was revealed that the best of all possible situations is to be able to barter from a superior position rather than an inferior one. Being able to get the most value possible for those items you trade is essential for your survival and the survival of your family.

Finding yourself in an inferior bargaining position is not a very good place to be. You need something and yet you may not have anything tangible to barter with that will give you the advantage. This is where intangibles assets will come into play as a valuable barter item. Your survival skills and knowledge may prove to be the winning factor. Your skills may be your biggest asset when it comes down to being able to barter successfully during an economic collapse or a breakdown of normal society. The knowledge and skills you have now could become the only truly valuable thing you could trade with if caught in an inferior bargaining position.

Learn the areas where your skills may be lacking. Know where your skills are the strongest. Learn their true value and know when and where they will be needed most. Realize that the ability to make or repair a needed item or provide a needed service may ultimately have the greatest value in a barter situation.

Staying above the water line!



Review: Preserving Food Without Freezing or Canning

Preserving Food Without Freezing or Canning:
Traditional Techniques Using Salt, Oil, Sugar, Alcohol, Vinegar, Drying, Cold Storage and Lactic Fermentation

by The Gardeners & Farmers of Terre Vivante
with a new foreward by Deborah Madison

I have mentioned this book before and included a recipe, but I wasn't yet ready to review the book. Here's my review with some recipes just for fun.

If you're interested in putting food by, and concerned that there may be no electricty in the near future (or are living off-grid, or planning to) BUY THIS BOOK. The cover says $25 new, but you can get it at Amazon for about $14 or so. The book is definitely worth the money if you put the techniques and recipes into practice. I'm sure as hell planning to come harvest time. In my opinion, freezing and canning have their place and we need to put those techniques to good use, but ever since I learned about lactic fermentation, and how that preservation technique makes food alive and brimming with enzymes and probiotics (not to mention zingy flavor), I've wanted to learn more traditional methods of preserving food.

The methods presented in this book: preserving in the ground or in a root cellar, drying, lactic fermentation, oil, vinegar, salt, sugar, sweet-and-sour preserves, and alcohol are all ancient methods of preserving food that do not harm the nutritional value of the food. Frankly, I think freezing and canning does detract from the nutritional value of food, but not to the extent that we shouldn't use those methods. Rather, augment your current methods of putting food by with these old/new techniques.

I want to quote a bit from the foreword to the First Edition by Eliot Coleman:

"In the opening paragraphs of his classic Soil and Civilization, Edward Hyams decries how modern misapplication of science has caused humans to 'begin working across or against the grain of life.' Hyams notes how science, when it becomes the master rather than the servant, displaces the age-old natural wisdom that has maintained the 'integrity of life.' Without that integrity, humans begin to lose contact with the 'poet,' which Hymas describes as the instinctive understanding of wholeness that has nurtured their well-being through the centuries.

Such change is abundantly evident in our modern American diet. The business of food science is in conflict with the poetry of human nourishment. Store shelves are filled with products that keep seemingly forever, such as canned or frozen food, ultra-pasturized dairy products, devitalized flour. ...

Food preservation techniques can be divided into two categories: the modern sceintific methods that remove the life from food, and the natural "poetic" methods that maintain or enhance the life in food...

The techniques presented in this book, maintain and enhance the life in the foods you are preserving, and this is the value of it, and the value of the book. I hold with many others that one reason Americans suffer so many degenerative diseases is due to their crappy diet of fast food, overly processed additives food, canned food, frozen food, all of it with very little to none nutritional value. You can live on the stuff for a while, years and decades even, but your body will break down and degenerate into diseased flesh.

But I'm not here to lecture--buy this book and try these recipes--they are all interesting and unusual. What the folks who put the book together did was ask readers of a French organic gardening magazine Les Quatre Saisons du Jardinage (Four-season Gardening) to send in their favorite methods and recipes for preserving food. They received over 500 recipes.

The Introduction to the book is very important. It discusses preservation without nutrient loss, stopping food contamination, choosing a method of preservation and a note on food safety. Each chapter of the book, each concerned with a different method of preservation, includes a general introduction to the method and then the recipes. There are charts, drawings, and clear descriptions of the methods. The individual recipes, sent in by the readers of Quatre Saisons du Jardinage, are charming, unusual, and usually mention the best variety of fruit or vegetable for their particular recipe. The recipes are attributed to the reader who sent it in.

Before I get to the recipes, let me say that I really like this book and I can't wait to try these recipes and techniques. This year I did very little canning, but I dried vegetables and foraged plants and herbs and fruit, I fermented quite a few and preserved with vinegar and oil, and we've been enjoying the results of those methods this winter. Now, I'm ready to try all the rest and I'm very happy to have this book to guide me. I love the idea of maintaining as much of the foods' nutritional value as possible, and enhancing the flavor when possible.

From Preserving in the Ground and Cellar

Apples in Elderflowers
Dried elderflowers
box, preferably wooden

Pick elderflowers in June, allow them to dry, and store them in an airtight container so that they remain fragrant.

Place a layer of dried elderflowers at the bottom of a box (preferably made of wood). Alternate layers of apples and layers of flowers. Finish with a layer of flowers, and close the box as tightly as possible. Keep in a cool, dry place (provided it is not too damp, a cellar is suitable). After six to eight weeks, the apples may be eaten and will taste like pineapples. This method works especially well for pippins, which can be kept in this ways for at least ten weeks. If we place them on a bed of elderflowers in small open crates, they will keep longer, but the pineapple flavor won't be nearly as intense.
A. Motsh, Ambierle

Preserving by Lactic Fermentation

Bottled Swiss Chard Ribs Without Salt
Swiss Chard ribs
Canning jars and lids
Only the ribs of the chard are preserved. The green leaves are used fresh. Remove the 'string,' cut the ribs into 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 inch long pieces, and wash them thoroughly. Place the ribs into widemouthed jars equipped with airtight lids. Pack down and fill the jars with cool water. The next day, rinse the ribs and change the water. Repeat this procedure for four consecutive days, before allowing to ferment. Preserved in this manner, the ribs will keep easily for one year, and can be cooked like fresh ones.
Andre Foex, Cleon-D'Andran

Tomato Balls
Ripe tomatoes
A fine strainer
A finely woven cloth
A screen
Canning jars and lids

For this old recipe from Provence, pick a good amount of tomatoes that have ripened well in the sun. Cut them in half, squeezing lightly to release any water, and put them in a jar. Set the jar outside in the sun (bring them in at night) until they begin to foam and smell a bit fermented.

Pass the tomatoes through a very fine strainer, rubbing it through with your fingers. Collect the strained portion; place it in a clean, finely woven cloth; and hang it outside in the sun until you get a paste dry enought o be shaped into balls. Let the balls dry on a screen in the sun. Then add salt, and put them in a canning jar. Cover them with oil, season with herbs to your taste, and close the jar.
Jennifer Rocchia, Beaurecueil

Preserving in Oil

Baguet (Parsley Condiment)
1 part shelled nuts
1-2 parts parsley (to taste)
1 part garlic and onion mixed
a little vinegar
a few anchovies (optional)
Olive oil
Canning jars and lids

This is a recipe from Val D'Aoste, in the mountains of northwestern Italy, bordering France and Switzerland. Use it as you would pesto for seasoning soups and pasta.

Grind all the nonliquid ingredients together very finely. Add the vinegar, put the mixture in jars, and cover it with oil. Without vinegar, preservation is a bit iffy; with vinegar, preservation is a sure thing.

Preserving with Salt

Migaine de Thezou (Mixed Vegetable Stock)
1 lb leeks
1 lb tomatoes
1 lb onions
3/4 lb parsley and chervil
1/2 lb turnips
1/2 lb celery
1 lb salt
meat grinder or food processor
This recipe came from a grandmother in my village. Grind all ingredients coarsely in a meat grinder or food processor. Let the mixture stand overnight in a bowl in a cool place. The next day, remix the contents of the bowl by hand. Put the ground vegetables in jars, and store them in the cellar or some other cool place.

While this mixture will keep for up to three years, it is best to use it all within the first year, since you can replenish your stock wtih fresh ingredients the following September. I add one or two tablespoons each time I make soup, tomato sauce, stews, court boullion, and so on. I prefer to toss it in raw, for a more interesting texture, but it can be cooked too.
Anne-Marie Franc, Baccarat

Fruits Preserved in Alcohol

Officer's 'Jam' or Bachelor's Ligueur

Fruit (whatever's available): strawberries, red currants, black currants, wild raspberries, peaches, plums, greengage plums, apricots, etc
Alcohol: kirsch for red fruit, cognac for others or brandy for everything
Sugar (same quantity as the fruit)
5 quart stoneware pot with lid

This 'jam' is prepared as the fruit ripens, over the course of the growing season.

Cut larger fruit into smaller pieces, and remove all pits. Then, in a very large, airtight stoneware pot (called a Rumtopf in Switzerland), alternate layers of one pound of fruit and one pound of sugar, as the harvest continues. Personally, I use less sugar: I cover each layer of fruit with sugar, and without weighing it first. It keeps as well as the version with more sugar.

Each time you add more fruit, cover it with the alcohol you've selected. Never stir. Store the pot in a cool, dark place, and wait at least six months before tasting this delicacy. However, it's much better if you wait one year.
Mrs. Defacqz, Switzerland

OK, that's it. I'm tired of typing, and I hope I've given you enough neat little recipes to get your mouths watering, your imaginations flowering, and your mouse pointed over to Amazon to get your own copy.


Simple Home Medicines are Effective

I thought I'd let you all know how some ongoing projects are working out.

The Yellow Dock tincture:

The first is, I'd made a tincture of yellow dock root for a good friend of ours who has non-symptomatic hepatitis C. He's had it for years; doesn't have any of the symptoms, but it is there. I gave him the tincture about a month and a half ago. He recently emailed and mentioned this:

"I had a health evaluation done at work recently. Tell Patty that my Liver Enzyme levels have never been lower. Not once in all the years I've been getting them checked out. Not that they've been sky high, but they were all down in the middle of the normal range. Must be something to those drops. Tell her my Liver and I say, Thanks!"

Three cheers for yellow dock tincture for liver problems, then. And I'm happy that our friend's health is better.

The Horsetail tea:

If you follow the blog, you'll know that an 81 year old friend of ours, Fred, fell and broke his elbow a while back. The orthopedic doc casted his arm and we've been making do ever since. I'd brought over some horsetail chopped up fine and some comfrey leaves to make teas for him and he's been drinking a cup or two a day of each. Last time we went to the doc, his elbow has started healing. There wasn't much to show yet on the X ray, but I'm sure we'll see more improvement when we go back for more Xrays on the 2nd of January.

The Garlic/Weird Mole:

In early November, I'd read a book on garlic as Nature's Super Healer. One of the extracts I shared from the book was on using a slice of garlic on funny moles and melanomas. A few days after writing about it, we started using a slice of garlic on a weird mole of Michael's. When I first looked at it, it was gray and hairy/fuzzy and ugly/weird looking. That was November 6. We've been putting a fresh slice of garlic on the mole every couple of days.

We put another slice of garlic on it today. And today the mole has almost disappeared. It's much smaller--like I said, nearly disappeared. It is now tiny, tan and very pale. I expect it will disappear in another few weeks.

Was this mole a melanoma? I don't think so. It hadn't changed colors or grown larger or any of the other signs that might tell of that deadly skin cancer. It was just a weird thing on his skin. But the garlic is definitely making it go away! We'll have to keep checking on it to make sure that it stays away, of course.

The reason I'm posting about this is that these simple, easy things can be effective and useful. None of this stuff costs much, if anything. Yellow dock, horsetail and comfrey all grow here in the valley. We didn't plant garlic this year (dammit), but we easily could have and it too would grow here. For that matter, there's wild garlic all over the place and if I couldn't get commercial garlic, I'd certainly use wild. It'd probably be better.

This is a very good thing, as dark times draw near. Useful wild plants grow all around us, even in cities, and we can use them to our benefit. It is the medicine God intended for us, after all, and to my mind, much better than pharmaceutical synthetics. Get to know an herbalist or forager near you, or better yet, get to know herbs and wild plants yourself. Then you will always have medicine at hand.

None of these things work as fast as pharmaceutical synthetics, of course, but that's probably a good thing. It takes time to develop problems and imbalances in our physical systems, and we need time to resolve those problems as well.

Needless to say, I'm not saying that horsetail and comfrey tea is "healing" Fred's elbow. Fred's body is healing his elbow. But the horsetail and comfrey are supplying some of what his body needs to do just that. Same with the yellow dock tincture for our other friend, and the garlic for Michael's mole.

Good luck to all in resolving your physical problems as well.


Recipe: Ever-loving’ Strawberry Kiwi Jam

By Joseph Parish

As most people who are familiar with me know I have been raising my eleven year old grandson in the art of survival. He probably knows more about taking care of himself then most children twice his age. He has become very self-sufficient with skills ranging from making his own colloidal silver to proper use of stored food supplies.

Yesterday I decided to teach him some of the fundamentals of canning jellies. His favorite of course is strawberry and he is fond of eating Kiwi fruit raw. Unfortunately it is very hard to talk him into trying various flavors. However, I am not one to be discouraged and decided to show him how to make a very tasty Strawberry Kiwi Jam.

The recipe that I have listed below will make approximately five or six half pints. According to whether or not you use regular pectin or Pomona you may have to vary the amount of pectin accordingly. Using more fruit and with the Pomona will increase the flavor greatly as well the use of Golden Kiwi’s in the batch.

The Ginger is an optional item and you do not have to add any at all as the final product will taste great with or without it. Here are the basic ingredients:

3 cups of crushed strawberries

3 peeled and diced kiwi

1 Tablespoon of lemon juice

1 Tablespoon of minced crystallized ginger

1 package of pectin

5 cups of sugar

Start the recipe out by combining the strawberries, kiwi, ginger, lemon juice and the pectin together in a large saucepan. Do not use any sort of copper pans for making jams. Bring the mixture to a rapid boil being sure to stir it frequently. Add the sugar to the combination and return the mixture to a complete boil again. Once again stir the mixture constantly.

Continue to boil the mixture for an additional minute and then remove it from the heat. Skim off any foam that has developed. Ladle the final product into very hot, sterilized jars and leave a 1/4 inch headspace in each. Place the lids on the jars and process them in a boiling water bath for approximately 10 minutes. You may have to adjust the boiling time according to the altitude.

There you have it. The final product is tasty and certainly a treat at breakfast time on toast.

Copyright @ 2009 Joseph Parish


Quote of the Day

Hunger, love, pain, fear are some of those inner forces which rule the individual's instinct for self preservation.
~Albert Einstein

Link of the Day

Wilderness Way Online

Wilderness Way is a primitive survival magazine. The site contains articles and a section of user submitted Survival Tips.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Taking Care Of Your Teeth

Should the SHTF there will most likely not be a dentist available, that is why it is even more important to take good care of your teeth now. Nothing is more debilitating than a toothache; not only that but any resulting infection could possibly be fatal if not treated properly.

Normal daily routine:

Brushing - this should go without saying. AT MINIMUM twice daily, preferably three times a day (morning, Noon, night). Use a baking soda based toothpaste. Brush gently in small circles and be sure to BRUSH YOUR TONGUE (Most bacteria hides there).

Flossing - should be done once a day, realistically I do this about 5 times a week. If you don't floss and you have continual bad breath, you need to start. Most of the reason for bad breath is people not flossing.

Antiseptic mouthwash - I use it after I brush, but I would use it a minimum of once a day. Use it after you floss to flush out all the crap the floss loosens up.

Yearly routine:

Dental appointments - You should get a cleaning twice a year; once a year is the absolute MINIMUM. They should do x-rays to check for hidden cavities and do a thorough cleaning. Do not skimp on visiting the dentist as it will cost you more in the long run when things start to "hurt".

Supplies to have on hand for the SHTF:

Extra toothbrushes - you should change your toothbrush at least every six months.

Plenty of toothpaste - Baking soda can be substituted, just make sure you stockpile some.

Plenty of floss - has a myriad of uses beside dental so keep plenty on hand.

Some type of painkiller - like Tylenol or Advil, you'll thank me when the toothache starts. If you can stock some topical anesthetic like Ambesol or will help.

Dental wax - have some on hand to use a filling replacement should a filling fail. Place and form the wax to keep debris out of the sensitive area of your tooth.

...that is all.


Preparing Children

Originally posted on The ReadyStore Blog


Preparing Children

We don’t want to think that bad things will happen and the thought of our children being scared or hurt is a painful thought to parents. But you can prepare your children by discussing possible scenarios and how they should respond. Our children mirror our own emotions. If we are upset and panicked, our children will be too. If we are calm and thoughtful, our children will act the same way.

Do regular drills. We try to do fire drills at least twice a year as well as earthquake drills since we live in earthquake country. We remind our children never to return to a building that is on fire as well as our family emergency plan.

Play the “what if” game. Ask your kids, “What if there was an emergency and you were stuck at school? What would you do?” Or, “What if you came home from school and mom wasn’t there and the house was locked? What would you do?” Talk about family rules and who they can go to if they are in trouble.

By talking to our children and giving them information, we give them the power to make smart choices in whatever situation they may face.


Inventory Check: Duct Tape

Duct tape. You need it. For almost everything.... repairs to plumbing, vents, machines, boxes, plastic tubs, clothes, hair removal ... no one's survival kit should be missing lots and lots of duct tape.

Here's a few suggestions (from:

-Hanging posters.
-Decorative book cover.
-Fix broken tail light on vehicle.
-Twist a long piece into rope (thousands more uses).
-Tape wires down on floor or out of the way.
-Tape wires back together after splicing (much wider than electricians' tape).
-Reattach rear view mirror.
-Repair cracked windshield/window.
-Patch ripped clothing.
-Hide unsightly wallpaper seams.
-Repair broken hoses.
-Repair broken fan belt.
-Use as art medium.
-Fix broken book binding.
-Band-Aid for really big cuts.
-Attach leg splint to broken leg.
-Wallpaper your house (may be slightly expensive, but well worth it for the resulting sophisticated look).
-Reinforce pages in 3 ring binder.
-Cover up empty drive bays.
-Fold in half and use as bookmark.
-Disk labels.
-Rappelling harness.
-Toilet paper.
-Hinge on cabinet door.
-Repairing leak in tire/inner tube.
-Taping annoying people to walls, floor, ceiling, or bed.
-Holding together computer cases.
-Hold up exhaust pipe (doesn't last very long).
-Repair upholstery.
-Make lawn furniture.
-Make lawn decorations.
-Fix racquetball racquets.
-Roll into a ball for hockey practice.
-Mark lines on a sporting event field.
-Clothing (all sorts).
-Can be use to wrap duct work, but doesn't seal or hold up ducts very well.
-Use to pull unsightly hair.
-Keeps pledges in their place (also applies to siblings).
-Patches holes in vinyl siding.
-An entire roll can be used in place of a bedroom door to keep someone in for hours.
-Twisted correctly, can be used as a billy-club.
-Wrapped around newspaper to make a dog chew toy.
-Holding on book covers.
-Reflective lettering.
-Mute function for humans.
-Contraceptive device.
-Climbing rope.
-Cover old pocket folders -- lasts forever!
-Shoe designs.
-Sealing envelopes (in case you hate the taste of envelope glue).
-Replacement for airplane glue.
-For store owners: great way to keep the wigs on mannequins.
-Seat belts that'll REALLY keep the kids still.
-Closing chip bags.
-Make the stapler obsolete!
-Putting up Christmas lights (easy removal).
-Why bother with waxing...
-Add several layers to your car's bumpers for a much safer ride.
-Fix vacuum cleaner hose.
-Tape ski boot to your ski when the binding breaks.
-Repair seams of ski gloves.
-Wrap around your waist when your zipper splits in a one piece ski suit.
-Lift and separate when you don't want to wear a bra or can't have straps showing.
-Hold temple onto eye glasses.
-Fix printer.
-Make a wallet out of it.
-Hold car hood shut.
-Patch hole in canoe.
-Fixing sets for the school play.
-Making props look more realistic.
-Make letter for letter jacket.
-Hold your letter to your letter jacket.
-Re-enforce the phone cord.
-Hold batteries in remote control.
-Play a CD (reflect a laser beam onto a CD to play it).
-Stick pictures up in your locker.
-Fix holes in your Airwalks.
-Use instead of nail polish.
-Hold pens together.
-Wrap your ankle for sports.
-Can be used in place of handcuffs.
-Hold file cabinet together.
-Hold shoe laces together.
-Can replace shoe laces.
-Can be used in place of Velcro.
-Write term paper on it.
-Graduation present.
-Can be used to put back together a shredded term paper.
-Stop your jeans from fraying.
-Hair ties.
-Hold spikes to your cleats.
-Make a book shelf.
-Note cards.
-Remove lint from clothes.
-Makes great bumper stickers with a sharpie!
-Cook a baked potato in it.
-Hold car door shut.
-Tape plastic over broken rear window in car.
-Tape down ripped carpet.
-Tape sole of ratty sneaker to body of sneaker.
-Hold speaker wire to the back of speaker.
-Use it as a Biore strip.
-Practical joke toilet paper replacement.
-Makes a good bib.
-Put it on your lawn and paint it green. Say good-bye to mowing.
-Mouse trap.
-Fly paper.
-Tape your little brothers' mouths shut.
-Use as vinyl flooring.
-Cover rust holes in your car.
-Roofing shingles.
-Make a clothes line.
-Window coverings.
-Use a roof rack on your car for carrying luggage and other items.
-Fix a broken plate.
-Patch a hole in your swimming pool.
-Make a swing for your kids.
-Make a tent for camping.
-For the annoying mother-in-law.
-Lock people into their house, school, office, etc.
-Hold your car's bumper in place.
-Seat covers in your car.
-Fix holes in your sock.
-Fix the hole in your favorite coffee cup.
-Make a coffee cup.
-Retread your tennis shoes.
-Repair work gloves.
-Make work gloves.
-Home security system - tape up doors and windows.
-Watch band.-CD case.
-Wrap a soda can or bottle in duct tape to keep it cold.
-Makes stylish notebook decorations.
-Use it to fix old instruments.
-Use it as a dog/cat/rabbit/frog/lizard/etc. leash.
-Hold on toupees.
-Duct tape annoying, rambunctious students to their seats.
-Reupholster the roof on a '83 Mustang convertible (or any vehicle for that matter).
-Attach it to the end of a yard stick (sticky side out) as a way to get pennies out from behind the couch.
-Surgical bandage.
-Fix a cigarette that is broken at the filter.
-A clothesline when you're out in the middle of nowhere. (Peace Corps favorite.)
-Use it as a substitute for Bondo.
-Makes excellent streamers for bicycle handlebars.
-Toilet seat cover.
-Replace broken screen in your screen doors to create an excellent storm door for those cold -winter nights.
-Makes great posters with the aid of magic markers.
-Make a sheet for your bed.
-Wrap freshmen up in it.
-Use to make the lines in the middle of the road.
-Make a space suit out of it so you can walk on the moon.
-Use as a musical instrument.
-Make a hat.
-Make a wallet chain out of it.
-Stare at it and try to find new uses for it.
-Make a boat out of it.
-Throw it at people.
-Write on it and stick to someone's back.
-Put a few rolls on their side and roll them to have a duct tape race!
-Tape a hedge trimmer or chain saw to a long pole in order to trim or cut tall trees.
-Use it as hockey tape.
-Tape Tupperware containers together in a way that you can stack them on top of each other for more storage space.
-Use to keep the cover of an old ice cream maker securely attached.
-Cut a hole in a piece of cardboard, wrap duct tape around it and get a really inexpensive original looking picture frame.
-Tape Nerf basketball hoop to the back of a door because they just don't stay on their own.
-Make a pouch and attach it to a door so you can hold stuff.
-Repair smashed pumpkin.
-Waterproof sun screen for bald men.
-Snowmobile/motorcycle seat cover.
-Hold broken U-joints together on truck so you can make it home.
-Makes a good replacement for chrome.
-Patch holes in convertibles or soft top jeeps.
-Resurface your trampoline.
-Artificial lighting.
-Use it to tape 10 year olds with sugar highs to trees during boyscout trips.
-Can be made to fashion weapons in a pinch.
-Emergency limb replacements.
-Make fantastic puppets and other toys.
-Can be used to clean the floor when no vacuum is available.
-S & M.
-Make a ball.
-Repair trim on cars.
-Patch up fish tank.
-Halloween costume.
-Waterproof footwear.
-Make a makeup case.
-Repair leak in pilot gas line.
-Gagging device.
-Pin striping.
-Wrapping Christmas presents.
-Patch seams in carpeting.
-Patch a hole in a tent.
-No need for lunch box - just tape all your food together!
-Use to keep President Clinton's pants up.
-Cute plant holder.
-Keep hair in place.
-Make a tie out of it.
-Chastity belt.
-Blister repair.
-Censor speech on softball uniforms.
-Repair pantyhose.
-Roll it over a pool and make a trampoline.
-Keeping guitar strap on your guitar.
-Taping mic to mic stand (or a hockey stick).
-Taping mic stand to amp.
-Hold a float together.
-Fix mini blinds.
-Get rid of plantars warts.
-Hold telephone together.
-Hold computer mouse together.
-Write on vehicles.
-Make a Halloween mask.
-Decorate guard rifles.
-Make really cool underwear.
-Make a mummy costume for Halloween.
-When you get in a really boring conversation pull it out and ask the other person if they can name 101 uses for it (plus or minus 70 or 80).
-Attach underwater flashlight to underwater strobe for night dives.
-Hold a car battery in.
-Attach glow-in-the-dark bugs to people's houses.
-Fixing the toilet seat.
-Window shade.
-Hair extensions.
-Seat covering for a 1963 Vespa GS 160 (or any other vehicle for that matter).
-Wrap around cardboard tube to make fake swords for the kids.
-Waterproof apron.
-Beverage holders.
-Pet rain gear.
-Toilet paper roll cover.
-Cell phone holder.
-Tool belt.
-Shower curtain.
-Repair speaker cones.
-Poor man's Viagra - two Popsicle sticks and duct tape.
-Hold the plastic (or Mylar) on your car where the window should be.
-Wrap a "365 Uses For Duct Tape" calendar for Christmas.
-Hold up worn out socks.
-Tape keys to bottom of car so you never lose them.

Ok.. some of those were jokey and funny (do we need to remind you of our disclaimer?) but honestly, there are soooo many uses for duct tape.

'Nuf said.


Fear and how it effects Survival

Scary guy to illustrate fearFear is a natural part of life and something that has been hard wired into our DNA to help us survive. The Fight or Flight response is what kept early man safe, and it can do the same for you in a survival situation. Remember, even the strongest of man can not run from fear, but learning how to use it can greatly increase your chance of survival.

When used in a healthy way, the chemicals our body creates in response to fear can motivate us to take the right actions. It can help warn us of danger, and give us an added boost of adrenaline to handle the situation. So anxiety can be good, but if not properly managed it can have disastrous effects on your chances of survival.

A Survivalist needs to learn how to control his anxiety to ensure his survival in any situation. If you allow fear and anxiety to get the best of you, it hampers your ability to make good judgments and sound decisions. This is why you need to learn techniques to manage your fears and calm yourself in any situation.

So what can you do to control anxiety?

The worst thing you can do is to pretend that you have no fears. Fear is not bad, how you respond to fear is what gets you into trouble.

  1. Think about what fears you have when it comes to survival.
    What scares you? What would cause the most anxiety if you were forced to survive alone?
  2. Figure out why these things scare you.
    Is it that you are not prepared? Do you lack certain skills to deal with the situation?
  3. Take those things that scare you and train yourself to eliminate the fear. For instance, if one of your fears is that you would not be able to get a fire going in an emergency, start practicing your fire making skills. Or maybe your scared of how you would handle being alone in the wilderness. In that case, start taking some hikes by yourself. Slowly start to extend your time in the wilderness until you have control over your fear.

Managing your fears requires you to do the things you fear the most. Training yourself will give you the confidence you need in a real world survival situation.