Archive for August, 2012

Magnesium Fire Starters Review

Magnesium fire starters are a popular way to create an emergency fire for heat and cooking in wilderness settings.

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Photographic capture of a flame created by thr...

Photographic capture of a flame created by throwing flint sparks onto a small pile of magnesium shavings from a common emergency fire starter and pocketknife (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

They are easy to use and depending on the style of fire-starter you choose creating a fire is only minutes away!

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In the following video there are several fire starters reviewed.

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The title of the video is “How To Use A Ferro Rod.”

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Ferro  is short for Ferrocerium which is a man-made metallic material that gives off a large number of hot sparks at temperatures at 3,000 °F (1,650 °C) when scraped against a rough surface. (see more…Wikipedia)

Please be very careful when using magnesium firestarters.

NEVER NEVER toss them into a fire as they will explode!

For More Videos see: www.youtube.com/user/Survive2prep360

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Which magnesium fire starters do you have ready to go in your 72 hour kit?

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Preparedness IS – Readiness IS

English: Food storage area of the San Diego Fo...

English: Food storage area of the San Diego Fort in Acapulco, Mexico (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Preparedness is a list of foods and  goods gathered for emergencies!

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Readiness is understanding how to use said goods and the knowledge of how to adapt in the middle of said crisis.

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Like the cartoons I used to read that said “Happiness is…”

I wanted to share a few of the things that mean to me

Preparedness and Readiness

Preparedness is… Food Storage, 72 hour kits, and Water

Readiness is… having  food, water, and shelter no matter what

Preparedness is… A couple of pair of warm, clean socks!

Readiness is… A fire drill plan and practice

Preparedness is… A 72 hour kit (again YES! Do You Have Yours Yet?)

Readiness is… Knowing when to evacuate safely

Preparedness is… The food storage list being checked off

Readiness is… Baking your own bread ANYWHERE!

Preparedness is… Making sure you have some emergency supplies and tools in your car!

Readiness is…–> Survival Skills: Hunting, fishing, foraging, building shelters (everything they taught you in scouting!)

Preparedness is… A Full tank of gas when fueling stations are either dry or lined up for miles!!!

Amusing Video On Disaster Preparedness:

I am sure there are a lot more things we could add to this list!

What is on your list for Preparedness and Readiness?

Are you worth your salt and electrolytes?

Among our staples for food storage

English: A pile of Iodised salt.

English: A pile of Iodised salt. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

should be salt. Lots of it.

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The phrase “Are you worth your salt” was an insult in ancient times if the answer came as “no”. Meaning that if a particular person thought you were  unworthy they might steal your salt rations!

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Along with our salt we should stock those awesome sports powders that replenish our electrolytes for times when we are exerting a lot of energy and efforts.

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Salt is important in many ways. In ancient times if you did not have salt you had no meat. Curing meats meant you had necessary proteins. Proteins are extremely important to supplying necessary building blocks back to the body’s muscle structure.

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The following video shows a basic set up for preserving pork using salt and smoke. This process can be used for beef and venison as well as fish. (Warning this video is a little graphic but not too gross! )

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It is extremely important that salt we will be consuming be iodized. Iodized salt is used to help reduce the incidence of iodine deficiency in humans.  Keep salt in storage in a dry cool place and you won’t have to worry about it going bad. If it gets damp however it will be ruined.
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Electrolytes are in essence salts. We need them to stay healthy and hydrated.

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In oral rehydration therapy, electrolyte drinks containing sodium and potassium salts replenish the body’s water and electrolyte levels after dehydration caused by exercise and [other dehydrating conditions.]
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Pedia-care for younger children and adult sports drinks are a great addition to food storage and can definitely be better for us than other less healthy drinks. They can help us replenish needed minerals and just be a great beverage. They are also a good addition to a 72 hour kit. Place a few portions of powdered sports drink in small sealed canisters to add to water bottles.

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Are you worth your salt?

Tornado Dreams and Mental Preparedness

A tornado near Seymour, Texas

A tornado near Seymour, Texas (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Are our dreams indicators of our mental preparedness?

In the middle of sleeping last night I experienced a vivid dream about a tornado, again. This I am sure has certain meanings if you look it up in a dream dictionary, but I was very interested in the actions that were taken in the dream itself.

I was holding my baby niece in the dream and was talking to my aunt about the baby when I noticed a very dark and menacing cloud lurking from our view of a large window. I watched it for about a minute until it started our way and calmly mentioned we needed to get somewhere safe. In the dream we step into a large tub that was in the next room and we sat down and waited. In the dream, the tornado cut the edge of the house and knocked some bricks out of the wall on the side of the home. At this point I woke up but was curious about it all day.

What was really neat about the dream was the fact that in my subconscious I was able to do exactly what you are supposed to do in the event a real tornado  is threatening your home. You take refuge in a tub because they are a more sturdy construction than most of the other areas of the home. If you are lucky enough to have a storm cellar that would be even better.

I am still not sure what the dream meant but I am glad that in dream state I knew what to do. Is this mental preparedness? I would think so at least for a storm of this nature.

Do you dream about disasters? If so what are they?

Related articles

Pillaging is NOT Preparedness

I have often heard people respond

Mad Max

Mad Max (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

to preparedness with the comment that they are going to pillage preppers stores.

Let me elaborate a little more on this topic.

I understand this macho comment is a very narrow view of what is going to really happen if the SHTF as we know it and we really find ourselves in a Mad Max society.

I am sure I am not the only one who has heard this one. Trusted friends who say they are just going to rob and kill people who have set up a back up. This statement has me really looking at the reasoning behind this attitude.

Beware of the Ostriches

First up we have the head in the sand phenomenon that goes with personalities of this type. These are the ostriches we need to be wary of. Usually they are brash and harsh in the way they carry themselves. I could go into pages of reasons they want to compensate but that is another blog in itself.

My concern is that the more I hear this the better you and I need to prepare to confront this outlook. The family I have is sacred enough to protect and defend in times of trouble and I do not understand the reasoning behind leaving behind your safe house to steal from another what you could have readily stocked yourself.
 

Pillaging requires:

  • A) A high amount of physical energy
  • B) Weapons and ammo to make it there and back (where ever there is!)
  • C) Knowledge of Combat tactics
  • D) A way to get back ALIVE to your safe house with the goods you took!

SO, you have left your family in the lurch by going out to conquer and pillage. You have left them to die? It occurs to me these individuals are the ones truly in the delusion that the world is theirs to claim. What they fail to understand is they will find others like them and suffer attack and injury and possibly fatal consequences of their own misguided deeds. They can probably achieve a couple of treasures for the take but the odds of them making it back to their strong holds are minimal.

These so called friends probably will be carrion for the crows in the fields.

Be prepared and beware of the pillagers.

Recovery – Things are going to be ok no matter what

When I think about my recovery from situations in my life I find a common statement:

Things are going to be ok  – NO MATTER WHAT!

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And that is because I have prepared and planned it that way through mental preparedness and meditation.

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There is a reason I am where I am. I tell myself. Be it that God has me there or the Universe scheduled my path to experience a few hardships. What do I have to learn here? In these circumstances I have found incredible strengths.

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Stepping into the hospital a couple years ago for a major surgery scared the hell out of me.

Harold Wilkins walks through rubble left by Hu...

Harold Wilkins walks through rubble left by Hurricane Andrew (Photo credit: State Library and Archives of Florida)

I hadn’t been that frightened since Hurricane Andrew was pointing it’s wicked energy our way and we looked like we were in its path for certain.

All I really could do in either situation was sit still within, find productive activities,  be at peace, and put my faith and life in the hands of my creator for the moment. Neither situation was a lengthy process, thankfully. That awful storm didn’t reach West Palm. My surgery was a painful patch but I had prepared mentally and in other ways as well.

Food storage on both accounts carried me through these crisis. In the hurricane scare, bread, water, and batteries were gone in the stores. We planned well, so we had a good supply. We adapted. We would have set up camp in our backyard and gone about life as close to usual as possible. During the hurricane warnings in the days before we gathered gasoline, water, and set up our home to ride out the monster. We even had a john boat in the front room in case we had to float our family out of a flooded home.

In the surgery recovery, I relied on the foods I had that would help me to eat until the healing settled so I could work again. Setting up the sick room in my last week before my hospital visit I made sure I had anything and everything I needed to lay in that bed and rest, heal. I stocked the headboard with small water bottles, first aid supplies, small food containers like puddings and applesauce. I placed books and other items to help me bide the time. I camped out my recovery for 2 weeks. I was unable to work for months but through preparedness I was able to get the time I needed to become healthy once more.

I planned my recovery in both of these situations by devoting some thought to the What if’s. These experiences had me looking at how fragile our lives really are. If our surroundings are disturbed we still have our health, right? We no longer have the creature comforts we hold so dear but we still have our family, friends, good memories? Yes! We need those to strengthen our resolve. I will be ok! Everything that is dear to us is gone. But we still have so much to be grateful for. Hold onto those good things at times of crisis. This is your hope!

Meditation For Preparedness:

Lay beautiful things inside your mind for times like these. Meditations are wonderful examples of this. I have a meditation that involves the prayer of St. Francis of Assisi. I want you to know that I am not Catholic but I find this prayer a wonderful tool for clearing out troubles in my mind and spirit.

From Wikipedia:

St Francis in Prayer (copia)

St Francis in Prayer (copia) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Prayer of St. Francis

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love.
Where there is injury, pardon.
Where there is doubt, faith.
Where there is despair, hope.
Where there is darkness, light.
Where there is sadness, joy.
 
O Divine Master,
grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled, as to console;
to be understood, as to understand;
to be loved, as to love.
 
For it is in giving that we receive.
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life.
Amen.

 

This prayer enlightens me to what is really important in life.

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English: Waterfall

English: Waterfall (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

As I do this I imagine a
cool, scene with a waterfall flowing into a pond.
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Breathe in sets of six counts and exhale that breath in the same count.
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This is where I settle.
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This is my safe place, my sanctuary, my time out.
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This is where I go when the day might get too heavy, stresses get too demanding, my schedule gets too crazy.
 
Where I will go in moments when I have to live out of my pantry or my 72 hour kit in moments I can spare out of my reality.
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I will require a moment in time where I can reflect and  feel safe so I can recharge and press forward with action and not defeat my own purpose for preparedness with gloomy thoughts or standing still or overwhelming fear.
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We must feed our spirit gratitude and light even if the world seems dark around us.
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There must be hope. 
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Keep moving in planning for emergencies!
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 And keep moving if we are in a disaster.
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Move always with purpose.
 

Prepared Mentally Healthy Excersizes

Preparedness is an excersize in living  healthy lives mentally no matter what. Providing the substances we need for food, hydration, tools to provide a back up plan to any situation where normal routines and life interruptions occur enable us to continue without much of an inconvenience. Sure, we will have to prepare our foods a little different if there were a lose of our home or an evacuation was necessary we will also have to prepare our minds to accept what ever comes our way. If the home is intact and we were just without electricity, that’s  a minor disruption if we did have the equipment to generate back up energy.

Ok, so we just have to do things a little different.

The Mind On Autopilot

In times of extreme shock or trauma humans go on auto pilot. Some folks go to panic. Soldiers have to be conditioned mentally and so should we. What have we trained our Auto pilot to do for us?

We plan to be in these situations so that when they do occur, we are not surprised we are merely redirected. In both circumstances I went into a numb state knowing I had to do certain things and just wait it out. There was no turning back or side stepping these events. They were happening!  I stood ready in both of these minor crisis to act if I needed to. Our mind does that for us. The aftermath of disasters if we are lucky enough to escape unharmed must be worked through. We will need time to adjust to new surroundings or life styles and lay in the foundation of a rebuilding. Coping with circumstances where we feel we have lost something or that something has been taken for us is not easy. It requires a mindset telling us not to harbor anger, sadness, doubt, dispair. The emotions certainly will be normal and they are going to happen.

We cannot let them stand in our way of being productive and healthy.

In the recovery of a 12 step program the first half of the first step is:

We admit we are powerless over _________ fill in the blank with what ever it is that has invaded your life. While there is very little we can do to control a situation we can take measures and actions to take us out of the center of it and find a new way to direct our thinking. Dwelling on the problems do us no good.

Taking affirmative decisions to live the best we can under our circumstances is a healthy way to begin recovery.

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