Archive for the ‘Family Preparedness’ Category
Enter “Prepare Magazine.” It offers hope and help to preppers and seeks to lend encouragement and helpful motivation. On yesterday’s DestinySurvival Radio I spoke with Joseph Miller, founder and chief visionary officer behind the magazine. “Prepare Magazine” is celebrating its first anniversary. While it’s had its share of growing pains, Joseph and his staff are moving forward, and you’ll want to be in on it.
The Man and the Mission
By the way, you may know Donna from Millers Grain House and Your Preparation Station on the Preparedness Radio Network. I’ve been on her show a few times, and she’s been on mine.
Joseph’s background is in community service. He served over 20 years in a not for profit organization helping families and children. Then he spent some time in the corporate world, which gave him a different kind of knowledge and training. It all worked to bring him to where he is today.
His call to prepare gave rise to his vision to start “Prepare Magazine.” Though he’d never published a magazine before, he saw a need to counter the fear and negativity often associated with preparedness. It’s his desire to publish a relevant preparedness magazine with a focus on sharing expert resources, purpose-filled training, and support and encouragement for others who are on the preparedness journey.
The Magazine and the Message
Joseph estimates they have 15,000 to 20,000 subscribers to the digital version, and they’re growing. Much of that growth has come through word of mouth and social media. The numbers are amazing, considering they’ve been around only a year. I’d say God has blessed their efforts.
The magazine won’t be overloaded with advertising. They’re selective about advertisers and want to emphasize good content. The goal is to cover a broad array of topics and themes of interest and importance to preppers, such as gardening, alternative energy, alternative health, bartering, mindset and community.
Contributors come from within the preparedness movement who write from their experience and expertise. They’re not writing about theory or regurgitating something from online.
The magazine doesn’t engage in politics. However, they are open about sharing the Christian faith and hope in Christ. They’re not heavy handed about it though.
It’s Joseph’s hope that “Prepare Magazine” will provide excellent value to subscribers. He’s sensitive to the needs of readers. It’s also his desire to help bolster community among preppers.
Find Out More
I’m a subscriber and appreciate what Joseph and his people are doing. There are other publications out there which have useful info for preppers. But for something just a little different, give “Prepare Magazine” a try. Join them as they grow, and you’ll move forward in your preparedness journey, too.
If you’re already a subscriber, why not leave a comment below and let others know how you like the magazine. Would you recommend it to other preppers? Is there something else you’d like to see the magazine cover?
Editor’s Note: Here’s another helpful article from Craig Caudill. You may recall he was my guest on DestinySurvival Radio a few weeks ago. View my post about that here.
If you have read about the Law of Threes, you probably realize how vital it is to your survival. If you haven’t read about it, I suggest you do. One concern many people have about the Law of Threes, is how do you put it to work for you during your survival training.
The simplest and most effective way to get a good handle on any skill is to practice. A lot. There are a few things you can do to really become familiar with any survival skill.
- Practice frequently
- Seek training from a qualified person
- Test your skills in stressful situations
You can never practice too much. Here is a little story about how a simple excursion with the family turned into a practice situation. My family and I were doing what we love–walking in the woods, when my son stumbled on an uninhabited hornet’s nest that had fallen to the ground. We could have just walked around it and carried on down our path. Instead, my son decided the nest material would make a good tinder bundle. And you know what? He was absolutely right.
This is one of those things he learned through practicing. Now, if he is ever in a survival situation, he knows one more thing that will work as a tinder bundle. Through him, the entire family added to their cache of survival knowledge. Even if it wouldn’t have worked, it still would have been an excellent learning opportunity. We would have all known in the future, skip the nest and keep looking for something else to use as a tinder bundle. You have absolutely got to get out there and practice and experience the outdoors.
This one is tricky. There are plenty of people who claim to be “experts” in survival training. However, let me give you a tip. An expert would not proclaim his or her way is the only way. The very nature of survival skills involves tweaking and improvising a specific skill until it suits you and your needs. There is no one size fits all. Sure there are best practices and you should listen to these insightful words. Take the advice, mull it over and apply it to your practices. It is imperative you keep an open mind and see what all is being taught out there. Take what you can from each person who has survival knowledge and piece it together to make your skill set work for you. Do not assume you know it all and cannot learn from another person. That is a dangerous practice.
Testing Your Skills in Intense Situations
This is crucial to your survival in a true emergency. If you do all of your practicing in ideal conditions with the perfect gear, you will never know what to do in an actual survival situation. Could you start a fire in the rain without your matches? You are going to have to learn the hard way before you are in a life or death situation. Throw yourself into a situation like spending the night in the woods without your sleeping bag or your knife. Can you do it?
Like I mentioned earlier about the hornet nest, these are things you will only learn through experience. Your training needs to include high-stress situations that require you to think out of the box. Once you have come up with a solution, this is one more trick to add to your arsenal of survival skills. Do not assume you can practice your skills with your gear on a nice, sunny 60 degree day and manage to survive in frigid temps with no gear to speak of.
Maybe you are operating under the assumption that if you had to, you could rise to the occasion. Don’t bank on it. Sure there a few, a FEW stories of extraordinary people who have overcome some extreme circumstances, but again, do you really want to bank on being one of the rare ones who perseveres? The old adage is true, “You will not rise to the occasion, but rather you will default to your level of training.” Why not give yourself a little more assurance and take the time to practice now and under various types of circumstances.
Yesterday’s DestinySurvival Radio featured an interview I did with Donna Miller of Miller’s Grain House which tackles those questions. Donna and her family have been into the preparedness lifestyle for years. But a few years ago they had some reversals that put their stock of preps and their faith to the test.
Considering the way things are headed in our country these days, now seemed like a good time to re-air my chat with Donna. I encourage you to listen to DestinySurvival Radio for March 28, 2013. You’re also invited to read the post I wrote after my interview with Donna last summer. View it here.
Prepping is all about facing adversity. How ready are you?
After working my way through the book and interviewing Tess Pennington for yesterday’s DestinySurvival Radio, I can tell you why you should have The Prepper’s Cookbook in your survival library.
Have you been setting aside canned food items from the grocery store in your survival pantry, but you don’t know how you’ll use them creatively? Or have you purchased dehydrated and freeze dried foods, but you don’t know what you’ll do with them when the time comes to feed yourself and your family in a grid down situation?
It’s The Prepper’s Cookbook to the rescue.
About Tess Pennington
She’s the founder of ReadyNutrition.com, which is a popular prepping website with over 160,000 readers a month. Her site promotes disaster preparedness, homesteading and, ultimately, self-reliance.
She has a simple mission–to introduce easy to understand concepts and strategies for dealing with disasters and emergencies, be they man-made or natural. She believes that through knowledge, skills development and family-based preparedness, we can learn to live a more sustainable lifestyle.
Her site offers a popular web-series called “52-Weeks to Preparedness.” It’s free and has helped thousands get ready for life’s unexpected disasters.
About The Prepper’s Cookbook
- Shopping wisely and buying plenty for less
- Knowing what to store for maintaining a balanced diet
- Knowing how much to store
- Suggestions to use equipment such as a solar oven and hand cranked appliances for off grid situations
- Making use of leftovers, including making soups
- How to repackage food with Mylar and oxygen absorbers so it will last longer
- Dehydrating and canning
- Getting children involved
- Lunchtime favorites
- Beans and rice
- Kid approved snacks
- Side dishes
- Breads and pastas
- Desserts and baked goods
- Alternative ingredients
- Applesauce Oat Muffins
- French Toast
- Black Bean Soup
- Chicken Pot Pie
- Beef Stroganoff
- Fish Tacos
- Potatoes Croquette
- Asian Ramen Salad
- Quinoa Tabouli
- Rice Pilaf
- Buttermilk Biscuits
- Peach Cobbler
- …and many more.
As with any useful skill, it’s important to practice now to be prepared for trouble. Start using the recipes and techniques called for in The Prepper’s Cookbook. You don’t have to be limited to freeze dried meals or MRE’s. Turn shelf-stable, freeze-dried and dehydrated foods into delicious, nutritious dishes your family will love eating.
Besides, the more you prepare ahead of time now, the less fuel you’ll need for cooking later when it’s in short supply or not readily available.
About boring survival foods
For example, we talked about things you can do with…
- Rice and beans
- Ramen noodles
- TVP (textured vegetable protein)
Find out more
The Prepper’s Cookbook is a DestinySurvival Amazon Pick and becomes available April 9th, but you can pre-order on Amazon right now. Click on the book’s image below. You’ll be taken to the page where it’s featured. Add it to your cart to start the order process.
Do you have favorite recipes you use in your survival pantry? To share your thoughts on this or anything else concerning food storage for your family, feel free to leave a comment below.
Have you considered taking classes at an outdoor survival school? If so, perhaps you don’t know where to start. How can you find one that’s reputable? Are there family friendly schools that offer good training, but aren’t like military boot camp?
Fortunately, the answer to that last question is yes. Here’s how I came to find out about such a school, specifically Nature Reliance School.
I became affiliated with Dan’s Depot a while back. And they were kind enough to offer articles I could share with you. Craig Caudill, a consultant to Dan’s Depot, has written articles you can view here and here. You may see more from him in times to come.
It seemed like a good idea to interview Craig for DestinySurvival Radio. So he was my guest yesterday, and I think you’ll enjoy our visit..
Who is Craig Caudill?
As the bio info on his site says, he “was blessed to grow up with parents that enjoyed the outdoors. He spent his childhood years exploring creeks, and woods at his home and at the family farm. He spent many weekends with his dad and other friends, sleeping in tipis and lean tos in reenactment events as well as caves and other wild places.”
“He also spent a great deal of time hunting and fishing, and was taught very important “woods ethics” by his dad. At an early age he challenged himself with two distinct “woods sabbaticals” in which he walked into the wilderness with very minimal supplies (a knife) and stayed for nearly 30 days each. These two experiences left him understanding the limits to his knowledge of bushcraft and wilderness living. It was those two experiences that have led him to the last two decades of practicing and honing practical wilderness skills alongside, primitive skills (i.e. Native American and other aboriginal culture skills).”
Craig has trained with notable instructors, too. One of them is Dave Canterbury of the Pathfinder School and co-host of Dual Survival on the Discovery Channel. But as Craig modestly told me in our conversation, he doesn’t want people thinking he’s cool or that he’s the only one who has all the answers.
He’s also an accomplished author who has written or been featured in several magazines including Self-Reliance Illustrated and others. He’s also written a weekly newspaper column and has been featured on educational TV in Kentucky.
Craig also loves teaching both adults and youth, especially to those who are new to outdoor experiences. In an e-mail he sent me, he quoted the late Jeff Cooper who said, “You will not rise to the occasion, but rather default to your level of training.” Craig believes in promoting family preparedness, rather than “lone wolf” survivalism.
What is the Nature Reliance School AllAbout?
Craig makes Nature Reliance School family friendly by keeping prices affordable and inviting parents to train with their children. While training is suitable for the inexperienced, the school is also open to those with more advanced skills, such as those in Special Forces who want to brush up on their training.
Different classes serve different skill levels. Whether you want to learn land navigation or survive in the woods with just a knife, you’ll find what you’re looking for at Nature Reliance School.
A chief aim of the school is to get people connected with nature. You should have the confidence to know you can learn to survive outdoors if you have to. The skills can be useful for surviving scenarios like earthquakes, which are a real possibility in the part of the country where Nature Reliance School is located.
But urban survival is important, too. Therefore, Craig has developed material on that which is provided by Dan’s Depot.
Craig makes it a point to be genuine and open with his students. Though he’s the teacher, he’s open to new ideas, too.
He and his staff want students to get a lot of hands-on experience. They also believe it’s important to work in groups, which will be essential in long term survival situations.
What’s the Connection to Dan’s Depot?
To my surprise, the company hasn’t been around that long–only a little over a year. But they’re aggressively reaching out to their intended audience. As a result, they asked Craig Caudill to become a consultant to help develop gear and kits and provide part of the training they offer.
Craig says he can’t say enough good things about the Dan’s Depot community. That includes the people who work at Dan’s and the people who participate in the online forums and comment on blog posts.
What About Mindset vs. Survival Gear?
Your survival gear won’t save you. It’s your skill using it that will save you. Dan’s Depot aims to provide you and me with the knowledge and mindset necessary to use that gear.
If you’re wondering how to get started, Craig recommends watching the DVD’s from Dan’s Depot, such as the one on urban survival. Also, check out the site’s forums.
Craig and I talked about more, but to hear it all, listen to DestinySurvival Radio for March 14, 2013. Check out the Nature Reliance School at http://www.naturereliance.org/. Find Dan’s Depot at http://www.dansdepot.com/ or click on any ads you see for them on this site.
Have you been to the Nature Reliance School or another outdoor survival school for training? How was your experience? Would you recommend such training to others? Leave a comment and share your thoughts.
Alex Smith (no relation) has written a book about that called Getting Home, and it’s a DestinySurvival Amazon Pick. Alex was my guest yesterday on DestinySurvival Radio. Alex describes himself as an avid outdoorsman who enjoys hunting, fishing, hiking, camping, etc. He says he’s saved by grace, and loved by an awesome woman. How can you beat that?
It’s not a lengthy book, yet it packs in a lot of info without being overwhelming. Chapters cover…
- Creating a robust Every Day Carry (EDC) kit
- Supplementing your EDC with a Daypack (DP)
- What to store in your office (or other facility while you are away from home)
- Selecting and outfitting your vehicle
- Selecting and outfitting a Get Home Bag (GHB)
- Creating Caches
- Getting Home: Tips and Tactics for Survival
Talking About Getting Home
He’s modest in saying he’s not a professional expert. But his extensive outdoor experiences have taught him much about what’s important and what isn’t when it comes to basic survival. This translates into guidance he can give as it relates to preparedness.
Getting Home is written to help you and me tailor what we need for our specific situations. Some of us work close to home, while some drive an hour to work. What you pack in your kits is determined by your particular circumstances.
Personal health and self defense are so vital to survival that Alex put them first in his book. In a nutshell, take care of yourself, and exercise your Second Amendment right to responsibly protect yourself.
Alex says self defense isn’t about killing someone. It’s about you being able to survive. Neutralize the threat and escape. If you finish off your opponent out of bravado, you’re committing a crime.
If you’re not familiar with the various ways to carry a handgun, you’ll appreciate Alex’s info on holster options. There’s quite an array of creative carry options for both men and women. Your clothing, climate and lifestyle should be considered when you choose what’s right for you.
While Getting Home includes very good lists of what to have in your various packs, be mindful of what not to have, too. For example, if your workplace prohibits firearms, don’t get yourself in trouble over having a gun or ammo.
Don’t expect your employer or even First Responders to take care of you if you’re stuck at the office for a day or two. The same is true if you’re stranded in your vehicle. Be responsible enough to be prepared.
What if you’re stranded with your children? Should you seek help from strangers? Alex and I covered these, too.
We also discussed what it means to be the “gray man.” He emphasizes several times in his book that your pack shouldn’t be camouflage. Blend in. Don’t stand out.
Would you believe Alex suggests packing tampons and comdoms? They do have their repurposed uses for survival in extreme situations.
If you get stuck on your route back home, would family or friends know where you might be found? Have you plotted out way points or notable landmarks for point of reference?
And what’s the deal with putting an apple in your mouth if you’re confronted by a shark? There’s a bit of humor in that one. But the last chapter of Getting Home deals briefly in general terms with several myths and sets the record straight as to what you should really do to survive.
Find Out More
Order Getting Home by clicking on its image below. That takes you to the Amazon page where it’s featured. Add it to your cart to start the order process.
How well prepared are you if you’re away from home when things start popping? Share any insights you have by leaving a comment below.