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Thursday, November 26, 2009

Food Storage Tip - Spices

Re-post courtesy of MatthiasJ from Kentucky Preppers Network

It is important to ensure that your food storage has enough variety so that you won't get tired of eating the same thing. If you eat the same thing over and over it can hurt your appetite and put you in a very dangerous situation where you wouldn't even be hungry. One way to help avoid that is to keep a variety of spices in your food storage. Spices are a great way to add variety in your foods while still eating some of the same ingredients.

Spices are really cheap. At most supermarkets you can get a bottle of spices for around $1. Spices are a great way to add additional variety in your food storage. For example, you can use italian seasoning for spaghetti, or put some red pepper in your canned soup for an extra kick. Spices are cheap so there's no excuse to not make them an important part of your food storage.

I would suggest getting all of the "basic" spices. Italian seasoning, lemon pepper, red pepper, seasoning salt, onion powder, garlic powder...ect. Stocked with just the basics you would be able to liven up any dish you prepare from your food storage. The purpose of storing food is so you can still eat good in the event of a disaster. With the proper spices on hand you can guarantee that your meals would be tastey and ensure that the family would want to eat the food.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Mental Preparedness

Re-post courtesy of MatthiasJ from Kentucky Preppers Network

Mental preparedness is just as important as storing your food and water. In a post SHTF world or any survival situation having your wits about you is going to be your best asset. You can have all the food and water in the world but if you panic and stress out it won't do you much good. You must prepare yourself mentally for anything that could come your way. A tornado, hurricane, lightning strike or any other disaster can happen with little notice. It's important to always stay calm and if you do you're always going to be able to handle the situation better.

Panicking will get you nowhere. When we had the tornado hit our house and neighborhood we didn't panic. After it was over we proceeded to ensure everyone was safe and okay. After that we started salvaging what we could and putting it in the parts of the house that weren't damaged. This saved us lots of money, and saved the insurance company from having to replace a lot of our stuff.

Even in everyday life keeping your stress levels down will help you with your job, social, and home life. Keep a positive attitude and don't let the little things get to you. Be patient with yourself and others. Not everyone thinks and works they way you do so be sure to accommodate for others and be understanding. This is an important part of the prepper mindset that I talk so much about. A prepper is always thinking one step ahead. Be ready for anything and never let your guard down.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Kitchen Gadgets - Smooth Edge Can Opener

Re-post courtesy of MatthiasJ from Kentucky Preppers Network

A can opener is an essential kitchen gadget to keep around. For obvious reasons, they allow you to open cans easily. Regular can openers leave sharp edges and once opened the cannot be closed back. The contents of the can must be eaten before they go bad. Enter in the smooth edge can opener. The smooth edge can opener opens the can from the side, creating a smooth edge that isn't sharp, and creates a lid that can be added back onto the top of the can for a nearly perfect seal.

Pampered Chef makes a popular smooth edge can opener that I'm sure everyone is familiar with. I'm also sure most smooth edge can openers on the market are a lot better than the conventional can openers. I have had experience with the Pampered Chef products, but I chose to go with the Oxo Smooth Edge Can Opener. The Oxo Can Opener doesn't leave any sharp edges, has a patented side-wind mechanism for effortless cutting, easy to turn soft-grip knobs and non-slip handles, dishwasher safe, and comes with a limited lifetime warranty.

The Oxo Can Opener is a necessary item in your food storage. A lot of times you're not going to eat the whole can of food after you open it, so with a smooth edge opener you can put the lid back on the can and save the food for later. This works great if you purchased a large bulk can of something and need it to last a few days. Even with the lid back on and sealed the food won't last forever, make sure to eat it within the next few days as quick as possible. This is why it's good to purchase smaller portioned canned goods to lower the risk of having to throw out food. In a survival situation, throwing out food is a huge no-no.

If you have a smooth edge can opener in the kitchen, great. I keep one dedicated in my food storage; and it would never hurt to have a spare lying around. If you don't own a smooth edge can opener I would suggest picking one up. Amazon sells the Oxo Can Opener for around $20.00. The opener is well made, great quality, and should hold up to years of use without any issue.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Apartment Survival Tip #1

Re-post courtesy of Matthiasj from Kentucky Preppers Network

There seems to be a lack of information regarding the preparedness options for people who are living in apartments or similar housing situations. I touched on this subject in my Prepping for College Students series but I would like to go into this further for those who could use the information. There are advantages to living in an apartment, and I will probably be in one myself sometime soon. They are cheaper, require little maintenance, and don't come with a lot of the "headaches" of home ownership. (Mowing the yard, fixing leaky pipes, air conditioning...ect.)

Just because you live in an apartment doesn't mean all hope is lost. You can store and prepare with the best of them with a little knowledge. The first obvious disadvantage of living in an apartment is your inability to grow a garden. Many see gardening as a focal point of their preparedness plan. I like to say, "no garden, no problem!" Let other people garden for you. You can purchase tons of fresh, natural, and organic produce at your local farmers market. Now the main goal of having your survival garden is to can your harvest to add to your food storage.

This way you don't have to garden, you can buy the produce already picked, then take it home and can it yourself. Canning is something you CAN do in an apartment, and canning from your local farmers market is the best way to do this. Buying from the local farmers market is also supporting local farmers, and you're contributing to the free market economy. Supply and demand will work in your favor. As more and more people shop and purchase at farmers markets, more vendors will open and sell their produce. This is the BEST way to can organic produce, and add it to your food storage if you live somewhere where you are unable to garden.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Water, not having it would really suck

It's really easy to get caught up in "prepping" and find yourself with tons of food stocked away. Theirs all sorts of choices and variety and we all go to the store and buy food on a regular basis.

It's even easier to completely forget about water. Without it, we're done for quickly. Us urban preppers simply turn on a faucet and out comes water brought to us by our local water company. Every three months I get a bill for about $60 and theirs not much more to think about. Their isn't a variety of choices to be made, and I don't have to go anywhere to get it.

But in a SHTF scenario, it wouldn't take long before the water stopped coming. If we're at home caring for our families because of a situation, do you really think the water company employees won't be doing the same. If the water plant has no power and no employees, we won't have water coming to our homes.

What I never realized is that the average American uses 50 to 200 gallons of water per day. http://wiki.answers.com/Q/How_many_gallons_of_water_does_an_average_american_use_in_a_day

Obviously, we don't stand a chance of storing up that much. But how little can we get by on?

Well, the recommended 8 8oz glasses a day would be half a gallon, and you'll probably need another half a gallon or more to reconstitute the food you have stored in #10 cans. Not too mention, brushing your teeth, washing your hands, etc...

So even if we're very conservative and say 2 gallons a day, for a three month supply, we would need 180 gallons per adult or more than 3, 55 gallon containers. Problem with these containers is their expensive, usually going for $80 or more, and the shipping tends to cost even more.

But I recently tracked down a local source, located in North Haven called Yankee Plastics:

Now I haven't purchased from them yet, but when I called recently they quoted a price of less than $60 per to buy a small quantity. I'll shortly be picking up 6 myself, it's just a matter of having time as their only open during the week and for that price you have to pick them up.

Employed, but for how long?

I got off to a quick start with joining this blog, and had intentions of writing more at a quicker pace. As happens in life, things change quickly. The company I work for has been downsizing at a rapid pace over the last few years. Even today, the next round of layoffs was announced. Checking the job boards theirs about 20 job listings for the entire country that match up with my skill set. Not exactly encouraging, but at least unemployment is something I can prepare for and plan.

As I'm typing this, I'm adding unemployment insurance to my mortgage and credit cards, and double checking the requirements for them to actually take over payments. At worst, I'll have spent about $600 over the course of the remainder of this year, but if I'm right and I do end up unemployed shortly, all my debt will be paid monthly and unemployment can cover food and utilities.

Most times we talk about things like natural disasters, civil unrest, etc.... . I'd love to hear feedback on what others are doing to prepare for the possibility of loss of employment.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Oathkeepers in Lexington Massachusetts

Oathkeepers in Lexington Massachusetts, I hope that any preppers within a few hours drive will take the time to attend this historic event on April 19th. For details visit Oathkeepers.net

I had the opportunity to speak with Stuart Rhodes founder of Oathkeepers at great length on the phone today. He is a very sincere man with a vision every bit as important if not more important than our own vision. We must stand behind all of our troops, veterans, and peace officers who pledge to keep their oaths. They must know that when they refuse to obey an unlawful order that we will be there supporting them.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Costco Basement List

Heres' the list of items that I keep in my basement from Costco. The great thing about this list is that it's the things we use on a normal basis. So even if the rest of our lives go perfectly smooth, I stay employed, Connecticut continues to miss out on natural disasters, theirs no more terrorists attacks, no domestic strife; I haven't wasted a penny, just pre-spent a little bit. It will all get used and I have the peace of mind knowing that we can survive for 3 or 4 months without needing to go anywhere.

I started small with 1 months worth of stuff and worked my way up each trip to 6 month mark. Take it slow, don't over extend yourself and before you know it, you'll be shopping to replenish stocks rather than because your out of anything.

Keep in mind this list is for myself and my wife, based on the things we actually use. You should make your starting list based on the things you actually use and the number of people you have in your household:

advil 4 bottles
aleve 4 bottles
alka seltzer 4 boxes
Body Soap 4 packs (2 bottles each pack)
Cat litter 6 boxes (we have 3 cats)
cinammon 3 large bottles
condensed milk 4 packs
Conditioner 6 bottles
cough drops 4 packs (6 bags per pack, assorted)
Dish soap 6 bottles
Dishwasher soap 4 jugs
Dog Food 4 bags (40 lbs each, supplement dog food with l/o table scraps)
foodsaver bags 4 packs
Hand Soap 6 bottles
honey 3 jugs
Kitchen Trash Bags 6 boxes
lemon juice 4 packs (2 bottles per pack)
Liquid Plumber 6 packs (2 bottles per pack)
listerine 4 packs (2 bottles per pack)
Mountain dew 6 cases (slightly addicted)
Outdoor Trash Bags 6 boxes
Pam Spray 4 packs (2-Pack)
paper plates 6 packs
Paper Towels 6 packs
peppercorns 4 bottles
qtips 6 packs (4 boxes per pack)
Rice Bagged 4 bags
Rice Boxes 6 packs (6 boxes per pack)
salt 6 containers
Shampoo 6 bottles
Spaghetti 6 packs (6 1-lb boxes per pack)
sponges 4 packs
sudafed 6 packs
Toilet Paper 6 packs
vitamins Mens 4 bottles
vitamins Womens 4 bottles
ziploc bags gallon freezer 4 boxes
ziploc bags quart freezer 4 boxes
ziploc bags sandwich 4 boxes

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Easy, Painless First Step

The first step to take in prepping is simply to increase the items you keep on hand. Most of us go to the grocery store every couple of days and only pick up whats needed for the next few days and only purchase dry goods such as paper towels and toilet paper when we actually run out.

The easiest step to take is to simply purchase items with a long shelf life in larger quantities and make sure you maintain at least a months worth always. If you don't already have a membership to one of the warehouse type stores, you should pick up a Costco membership right away. I recommend the Executive level membership as you get a 2% rebate on all your purchases. Simply put, if you purchase $5,000 worth of stuff from them in a year, you'll receive a rebate check for $100 which means a free membership. Since you'll be buying most items in bulk from them over the year, it will be pretty easy to hit the $5,000 mark in a year.

Tomorrow I'll share my list of items that I purchase from Costco and keep on hand at all times.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Prepping in CT

If you've searched for information, and come across any of the message boards on prepping, I'm sure you've run into the stereo-typical prepper. Backwoods cabin/house with acres of farmland, 5 years of food set aside, etc...

Not to knock anyone, I wish I had that kind of setup in the backwoods of Vermont. Reality is that's not a possibility for most of us here in Connecticut, even if we would love for it to be. So this blog will be dedicated to preparing at a reasonable pace for the most likely events to occur in Connecticut, without dedicating all our time or resources to doing so.

I'll be posting resources I find and info on companies I've actually purchased from. Along with suggestions on how to prep sanely. It's also a great way for those of us in Connecticut to get the chance to discuss these issues with someone nearby.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Coming Soon...

Anthony will be operating the Connecticut Preppers Network. Welcome Anthony! If anyone would like to be a Team Member and contribute, please leave a comment.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Cut expenses and prep at the same time!

Hello everyone, my user name is Bullseye and I will be providing a few posts here for all to read until we get someone to take over this Network. I started Kentucky Preppers Network back in the fall of last year. Since that time The American Preppers Network came to be and they as me to be the Eastern Regional Coordinator, which is the hat I am wearing at this time. The following post was posted by matthiasj who is now running the Kentucky Preppers Network. Matthiaj has allowed me to re post this here because first, he is a friend and fellow prepper and second, he and I both feel this is a very useful post and wanted to share with all.
If you are interested in running this network please contact Bullseye 1kentuckyprepper@gmail.com or Tom americanprepper@yahoo.com . We would be glad to help you in anyway.

The idea of storing food and water for an emergency might be very foreign to some. What do I buy? How much? How will I pay for this? These are some questions that many might ask themselves when they realize they need to prepare for a natural disaster or most of all, economic collapse. Most Americans rely on weekly or even daily Wal-Mart trips. What if there wasn’t any food at Wal-Mart? The answer is simple; keep a long term food supply for emergencies.
What do I buy?
Store what you eat, eat what you store. This should be the motto of any survivalist. You don’t want to store beans, rice and wheat if you don’t eat these foods. The first step in preparing to store food is to change your diet. Start eating foods that you can store for long term such as beans, rice and making homemade bread from your own wheat. This way when disaster strikes your taste buds won’t be shocked when your diet changes. Beans and rice are not the only items to store, but are staple foods and contain tons of nutrients that your body needs. Fruits, and vegetables are also very important and freeze dried or dehydrated fruits or vegetables is the way to go. In a survival situation, having a variety is the key to keeping a strong apatite and not getting bored with the same meals every day. Having a few good recipe books on hand that will show you how to make different homemade recipes from your raw materials will allow you to have a variety in your meals.
How Much?
This is another important question many would ask when faced with the fact they need to store food. Personally, I would start out small. Get a week or two worth of food and water for the whole family. Once you see what foods you need and the amounts you consume on a small scale, you can increase your quantity for longer periods on up until you have a year’s worth of food for the whole family. There are a lot of different opinions of how much of which foods to store. Most would agree that around 300lbs of wheat per person would be enough for a whole year, 200lbs of rice, and 50lbs of beans. These are the starting point of any long term food storage. 100lbs of salt, and sugar would also be other items to add for your year supply. From there you can judge how much on a weekly basis your family eats, and purchase accordingly.
How will I pay for this?
This question could be the most important question of all. When you hear 300lbs of this, 200lbs of that you think there’s no way I can afford that. In reality buying your basic survival foods in bulk is extremely cheap and will SAVE you tons of money in the long run. It might take a larger initial investment, but at the end of the year it will pay off tremendously. For example, 300lbs of wheat would cost you $100, and 200lbs of rice will cost only $60. Sam’s Club and Costco are great places to purchase bulk food on the cheap. There are many websites that offer freeze dried foods and dehydrated foods sealed in #10 cans for very cheap also.
Storing food, eating healthier, and cheaper is not hard and just takes a little work to figure out how much you need and which foods you would prefer. The bottom line is to try these foods out before you go out and spend money on them. Try eating pinto beans, black beans, and lentils and see which ones you like the best. From there you can choose which ones to store. Learn how to make homemade bread from raw wheat and decide what your favorite type of wheat is. Storing food is an insurance policy, just like we have car insurance and home insurance…why not have food insurance?

Posted by matthiasj of Kentucky Preppers Network

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


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Saturday, January 17, 2009

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