Friday, December 4, 2009

How to control bleeding

Regardless how severe, all bleeding can be controlled. If left uncontrolled, bleeding may lead to shock or even death. Most bleeding can be stopped before the ambulance arrives at the scene. While you're performing the steps for controlling bleeding, you should also be calling for an ambulance to respond. Bleeding control is only part of the equation.

The first step in controlling a bleeding wound is to plug the hole. Blood needs to clot in order to start the healing process and stop the bleeding. Just like ice won't form on the rapids of a river, blood will not coagulate when it's flowing.

The best way to stop it is to...stop it. Put pressure directly on the wound. If you have some type of gauze, use it. Gauze pads hold the blood on the wound and help the components of the blood to stick together, promoting clotting. If you don't have gauze, terrycloth towels work almost as well.
If the gauze or towel soaks through with blood, add another layer. Never take off the gauze. Peeling blood soaked gauze off a wound removes vital clotting agents and encourages bleeding to resume.

Once bleeding is controlled, take steps to treat the victim for shock.

Thursday, December 3, 2009


You are not seeing double! At the beginning of November I posted about this same thing. But, lucky for you if you didn't get in on the deal the first time, courtesy of Macey's we have round two.

Davinci Pasta (16 oz.) is on sale for $.68.

So again, you can get
10 lbs. of pasta for $6.80
30 lbs. of pasta for $20.40

This is a screaming deal! Do you have any college kids on your Christmas list? How about a wedding reception to go to?

Not only do they have Pasta on sale, but the Spaghetti sauce to go with it. Ragu (26 oz.) jars are $.98. For those on a budget (that would be most of us these days) this is budget friendly food storage, but it's also a cheap dinner tonight.

Other great deals to pick up while you are there:
Spaghettios - $0.48
Betty Crocker Cake Mix - $0.78
Corn Flakes - $0.88
Light Corn Syrup $1.58
Oil is an okay price, but someone has it for $1.99 right now - I will check the ads and get back to you.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Today I am thankful that I still have time to prepare. I know that food storage and preparedness stuff can get pretty overwhelming. I have a hard time figuring out dinner for tonight, let alone planning dinner for 6 months from now. But, I know that if I do something everyday, week, two weeks, month - to get prepared I will be better off than before. Start today preparing for tomorrow - you never know what tomorrow will bring.

One year ago I was thinking my husband needed to get a better paying job because I felt like we just weren't making it - things were too tight. If I only knew that in a few short weeks he would lose that job and things would get much, much tighter.

Start TODAY! Don't wait. Tonight/tomorrow when you run to the grocery store to buy a few last minute things in preparation for Thanksgiving - toss in an extra bag of flour, or a can of salt, another gallon of oil can always help, just do something. Then when you are laying in bed tonight running over the events of the day you can feel at peace that you started today - instead of justifying why you haven't.

Happy Thanksgiving! I hope that we all remember to thank those around us who make our lives great and love hard on the ones we sometimes take for granted. I am thankful I am preparing today.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Go Bag

A Go-Bag should be used in conjunction/be part of your 72-hr kit. Prepare one Go-bag for each family member and make sure each has an I.D. tag. You may not be at home when an emergency strikes so keep some additional supplies in your car and at work, considering what you would need for your immediate safety.
*Radio – battery operated
*Dust mask (Preferrably a N-95 mask)
*Pocket knife
*Emergency cash in small denominations and quarters for phone calls
*Sturdy shoes, a change of clothes, and a warm hat
*Local map
*Some water and food (At least enough for 24 hours)
*Permanent marker, paper and tape
*Photos of family members and pets for re-identification purposes
*List of emergency point-of -contact phone numbers
*List of allergies to any drug (especially antibiotics) or food
*Copy of health insurance and identification cards
*Extra prescription eye glasses, hearing aid or other vital personal items
*Prescription medications and first aid supplies
*Toothbrush and toothpaste
*Extra keys to your house and vehicle
*Any special-needs items for children, seniors or people with disabilities. Don’t forget to make a Go-bag for your pets.

List courtesy of

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

ABCs - Airway, Breathing, Circulation

**To learn CPR properly, take an accredited first-aid training course, including CPR and how to use an automatic external defibrillator (AED).

This is a crash course, the basics - I encourage you to check locally and get certified, but it is a good to have a general idea, it may help you can assist someone who is performing CPR.

Remember the ABCs Think ABC — Airway, Breathing and Circulation — to remember the steps explained below. Move quickly through Airway and Breathing to begin chest compressions to restore circulation.

AIRWAY: Clear the airway
1. Put the person on his or her back on a firm surface.
2. Kneel next to the person's neck and shoulders.
3. Open the person's airway using the head-tilt, chin-lift maneuver. Put your palm on the person's forehead and gently tilt the head back. Then with the other hand, gently lift the chin forward to open the airway.
4. Check for normal breathing, taking no more than five or 10 seconds: Look for chest motion, listen for breath sounds, and feel for the person's breath on your cheek and ear. Gasping is not considered to be normal breathing. If the person isn't breathing normally and you are trained in CPR, begin mouth-to-mouth breathing. If you believe the person is unconscious from a heart attack and you haven't been trained in emergency procedures, skip mouth-to-mouth rescue breathing and proceed directly to chest compressions to restore circulation.

BREATHING: Breathe for the person Rescue breathing can be mouth-to-mouth breathing or mouth-to-nose breathing if the mouth is seriously injured or can't be opened.
1. With the airway open (using the head-tilt, chin-lift maneuver) pinch the nostrils shut for mouth-to-mouth breathing and cover the person's mouth with yours, making a seal.
2. Prepare to give two rescue breaths. Give the first rescue breath — lasting one second — and watch to see if the chest rises. If it does rise, give the second breath. If the chest doesn't rise, repeat the head-tilt, chin-lift maneuver and then give the second breath.
3. Begin chest compressions to restore circulation.

CIRCULATION: Restore blood circulation with chest compressions
1. Place the heel of one hand over the center of the person's chest, between the nipples. Place your other hand on top of the first hand. Keep your elbows straight and position your shoulders directly above your hands.
2. Use your upper body weight (not just your arms) as you push straight down on (compress) the chest 2 inches (approximately 5 centimeters). Push hard and push fast — give two compressions per second, or about 120 compressions per minute.
3. After 30 compressions, tilt the head back and lift the chin up to open the airway. Prepare to give two rescue breaths. Pinch the nose shut and breathe into the mouth for one second. If the chest rises, give a second rescue breath. If the chest doesn't rise, repeat the head-tilt, chin-lift maneuver and then give the second rescue breath. That's one cycle. If someone else is available, ask that person to give two breaths after you do 30 compressions.
4. If the person has not begun moving after five cycles (about two minutes) and an automatic external defibrillator (AED) is available, apply it and follow the prompts. The American Heart Association recommends administering one shock, then resuming CPR — starting with chest compressions — for two more minutes before administering a second shock. If you're not trained to use an AED, a 911 operator may be able to guide you in its use. Trained staff at many public places are also able to provide and use an AED. Use pediatric pads, if available, for children ages 1 to 8. Do not use an AED for infants younger than age 1. If an AED isn't available, go to No. 5 below.
5. Continue CPR until there are signs of movement or until emergency medical personnel take over.

This step by step guide is courtesy of the Mayo Clinic.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


CERT = Community Emergency Response Team, there motto is "Doing the greatest good for the greatest number". The CERT program is administered by FEMA and the Department of Homeland Security. Most cities have CERT programs available. It is generally a 6-8 week course that teaches people the basics of taking care of themselves and those around them during an emergency. It also educated people about the hazards that may impact their area and trains them in basic disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization, and disaster medical operations.

Using the training learned in the classroom and during exercises, CERT members can assist others in their neighborhood or workplace following an event when professional responders are not immediately available to help. CERT members also are encouraged to support emergency response agencies by taking a more active role in emergency preparedness projects in their community.

This said, I went to a CERT training last year and found it extremely valuable. I think that anyone who has a chance to attend a CERT training should, if for no other reason than to become aware of what hazards are around you, and how to best handle yourself and your family in those situations.

I am going to attempt to give a CERT tip once a week. But, please check locally to see what is available to you. It will be worth your time.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Cheaper than you think

A basic one year supply of food is cheaper than you think. Don't believe me - I'll prove it.

300 lbs. Grain @ $5.90 per 25 lb. bag x 12 = $70.80
60 lbs. Legumes @ $14.45 per 25 lb. bag + $8.50 (2 #10 Cans) = $37.40
20 lbs. Oil @ $2.00 per 48oz. bottle x 8 = $16*
60.5 lbs. Sugar @$13.20 per 25 lb. bag x 2 + $8.90 (2 #10 Cans) = $35.30**
50 lbs. Milk @ $24.80 per 25 lb. bag x 2 = $49.60

Basic One Year Supply = $209.10

Granted this is Basics and there is no variety, but that is an amazing start! You can do this. Christmas is coming, what better gift.

*Crisco 48 oz. bottles are on sale at Walmart right now for $2.00
**During case lot sales you can generally get a 25 lb. bag of Sugar for around $10, so you could get 75 lbs. for $30.
(All prices, except Oil are from the Church Cannery)

Friday, November 6, 2009

More Fiber for Your Diet

More talk on Grains - really? Yes, they make up the biggest chunk of your 1 Year Basic Supply.

The Cannery is a great resource for getting the basics. You can buy White or Red Wheat in Bulk at $5.90 for a 25 lb. bag (cheap!) or by the can at $2.60 for a 5.8 lb No. 10 can.

300 lbs. of wheat in a bulk bag is $70.80 or 300 lbs. of wheat in No. 10 cans is $135.20
OR if you got some pasta that's a great deal maybe you only need 275 more lbs. = $64.90

Other Grains:

Rice, White - 25lb. bag = $10.35 and a No. 10 can is $3.60 for 5.7 lbs.
Oats, Quick - 25 lb. bag = $7.50 and a No. 10 can is $2.05 for 2.6 lbs.
Oast, Regular - 25 lb. bag = $7.50 and a No. 10 can is $2.05 for 2.7 lbs.
Macaroni - 20 lb. bag = $13.45 ($0.67 per lb.) and a No. 10 can is $3.55 for 3.4 lbs.
Spaghetti - 25 lb. bag = $16.25 and a No. 10 can is $4.05 for 4.3 lbs.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Good deals...

Macey's Grocery Store has DaVinci 16 oz. pasta on sale for $.68. So, that means you can put a dent in your Grains category for cheap! 16 oz = 1 pound. I try to store 30-50 lbs. of pasta per person in addition to or as part of my Grains. I like variation and kids love pasta.

30 lbs of pasta equals $20.40 (tax not included)

As a side note they also have Hunt's Spaghetti Sauce on sale for $.95 - we are talking a meal for your family for under $2.00. Dress it up if you want, but the base is there and super cheap.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Where do you live?

Winter is fast approaching here in Northern Utah which means drastic changes to the climate. There is the old joke of: "If you don't like the weather in Utah, wait five minutes." This unfortunately holds some truth - it can change for the better or the worse in a matter of a few minutes. So.....

What does that mean for me?

Are you prepared for the weather/seasons in which you live? If you live in an area that is hot and dry are you prepared with more water and a way to cool yourself in the hot summer months? Or what about the winter - can you keep yourself warm and dry?

Now that I have you thinking - here are some suggestions/thoughts (specifically for winter).
- Extra blankets
- Socks, shoes and warm clothes in 72 hour kits
- Pocket warmers
- Mittens/gloves/hats
- Clear plastic sheeting (can be put over broken windows - keeps in heat and allows light in)
- Heater (I will talk about types more fully in another post)
- Wood
- Tarps
- Stuff to make a fire (Survivor has proved it's not as easy as you think)

Think about camping in a snow storm - what would you need?

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Applebox Reflector Ovens

The idea and instructions for this Applebox Reflector Oven are courtesy of Emergency Food in a Nutshell, 2nd Edition, Revised. (THANK YOU!!!) This is a great book!

Supplies you will need:
1 apple box (20 inches x 13 inches and 12 1/2 inches high)
extra cardboard (to fill any holes)
heavy duty foil
metal repair tape (foil tape)
1 plastic oven bag
double sided tape
box cutter
butter knife

To start you need a 78 -inch piece of heavy duty foil and a 84 inch piece of heavy duty foil and an apple box.

First fill in any holes you may have in the box, including handle holes, with extra cardboard, tape in place.

It's easiest to trace the hole onto the extra cardboard so you get a snug fit.

Cut it out and tape in place. Repeat the same process with the other handle hole and any other holes you may have in the box.

Next up take your 78 inch piece of foil, it will cover the inside and outside ends of the box and the outside only of the bottom. Lay the foil shiny-side down. Position the box lengthwise and bottom down in the center of the foil.

Fold one side of the foil up the end and inside the box. Smooth out foil and ease into corners (be careful not to rip foil, especially in the corners). Put a few pieces of tape down to secure.

Making sure the foil on the end is snug, repeat for the other end of the box. Fold excess foil on the outside edges of the box onto the box sides and secure foil every 4-5 inches with foil tape, both inside and outside the box. (Foil tape is very easy to tear with your fingers and I like to tear strips lengthwise, and do longer skinny strips as opposed to short fat strips, but that's just me.)

If making a window (not required, but very helpful) - on one of the long sides of the box cut a horizontal window (about 7x4 inches), centered and 2 1/2 inches from the closed bottom of the box.

Next take the 84 inch piece of foil, this will cover the inner and outer sides and bottom of the box. Lay the foil shiny-side down and position the box lengthwise and bottom down, centered on the foil.

Begin on the side of the box without the window. Fold the foil over and inside with box again being careful to smooth everything down and not tear holes.

Making sure the foil on the side you just covered in snug, pull the foil around the bottom and up the side (covering the window), down the inside (covering the window) and across the bottom. Overlap and extra foil over the first edge. Secure the foil every 4-5 inches with foil tape.

Now feel carefully for the window, using the box cutter, cut a horizontal slit in the middle of the window hole, stopping 2 inches from each side. At each end, make diagonal cuts to the corners, it should look kind of like the back of an envelope.

You now have double flaps of foil on all sides of the window. Using a butter knife or your fingers if your careful, carefully ease the inside flaps through the window and down between the box and the outside foil. Fold the outside flaps through the window to the inside of the box and secure with tape.

Cut extra bits of foil tape to put in the window corners so that no part of the box is exposed. Cover edges of window with foil tape to reinforce.

Using a plastic oven bag, cut a double layer rectangle 1/2 inch larger than the window on all sides.

Using double sided tape secure the first layer of the bag and then again use double sided tape and secure the second layer.

Secure outside plastic edges with foil tape.

Now do a once over on your box, double checking that all of the foil is secure and that there is no cardboard showing anywhere (it will burn).
Baking with the Oven:
You will need:
4 empty soda cans, filled partially with sand or rocks (so they don't tip over)
10x16 inch cooling rack
Chimney Charcoal starter
Heavy duty foil longer than box
charcoal briquets
long-handled tongs
1-inch rock
This is the basic set up for cooking. The gist is that you heat up the briquets (1 briquet = 35 degrees, ex. 350 degrees = 10 briquets) and they lay under the cooling rack and the food and the heat reflects of the foil surfaces and cooks your food. Genius!

Place a piece of foil shiny-side up on level dirt or cement (nothing flammable). Place pop cans on foil and put cooling rack on top of pop cans (pop cans in very corners of cooling rack but not too far so that the box won't fit). Count out and heat the number of charcoals necessary for the temperature needed (if it's very cold or wet one or two extra charcoals may be needed). Place charcoal starter on a piece of foil, place two pieces of wadded-up newspaper in the base of chimney starter and light. Allow to stand 5 min. until top briquets have white spots at least the size of a dime. Using tongs, place briquets on foil, spreading them out evenly between the cans and across the middle. Place cooling rack on top of cans.
To pre-heat oven, place the oven over the coals and empty rack, resting one corner on a 1 inch rock. This allows enough air into the box for the charcoal to stay lit. Let stand for 5 min. Carefully lift oven off coals taking care not to tilt and place it beside the ground foil. (This holds in trapped heat.) Quickly place food, in pan, on rack and replace oven over coals, resting one corner on the rock. (Food cooked on a cookie sheet should be placed in from the corners as food directly over the cans will not cook.)
Charcoal will burn for 35-40 minutes. When longer cooking time is needed, additional hot coals can be added by slightly lifting the box and slipping them in with long tongs. When food is done, remove oven and serve. Safely deal with the charcoal, dust off ground foil and fold loosely, it can be reused.
Use light colored baking pans so that baked foods do not get too dark on the bottom.
Face the window toward the sun so you can see in and check on the food.
For baking in freezing temperatures, place a doubled piece of wool blanket or other material that insulates on top of the box to retain heat inside.
Baking once a day at 400 degrees, will use an average of 12-13 charcoals a day.
One lb. charcoal = about 17 briquets (may vary depending on brand). To bake for 1 year store 16 (20 lbs.) bags = 320 lbs. This allows for a few extra briquets for wet or cold weather.

Again credit for the Applebox Reflector Oven goes to Probert, Harkness Emergency Food in a Nutshell, 2nd Edition, Revised.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

One year

Basic One Year Supply of Food:

300 lbs. Grain
60 lbs. Legumes
20 lbs. Fats/Oils
60.5 lbs. Sugars
52 - 106 lbs. Milk (based on 3 cups per day) - If you decrease your Milk, increase your Grain
8 lbs. Salt

This is just the BASICS. After WWII they found records from the second largest concentration camp, those records showed they stored 375 lbs. of grain per year per prisoner. That equated out to a 2"x5" piece of bread a DAY (Think about a 3x5 photo - not very big). They were given that much bread and a bowl of potato soup each day. Have you seen pictures of those poor souls? They were completely emancipated - you will ALWAYS be hungry if you only have the basics.

This is not to overwhelm you, because SOME is ALWAYS better than NONE, but so you are mindful. We can always do more.

(I wasn't able to track down the person/ward who took this picture - but the credit and idea goes to them - THANKS)

Dehydration Solution

In case of dehydration from sweating or loss of fluids from excessive diarrhea, a dehydration solution is essential to have on hand.

1 tsp. salt
8 tsp. sugar (molasses can also be used)
1 quart water

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

H20 - Continued

How do I clean water?
1 - Clarify
Strain out any debris by using a coffee filter, layers of paper towels, tightly woven cloth or commercial water filter bags.

2 - Disinfect
Boil, pasteurize, distill, solar, iodine, silver and chlorine are all ways to disinfect (I do not list bleach because you get more cleaners and fragrance than you get disinfectant.)
Boiling - Full rolling boil for 15 minutes (you will need a way to bring to a boil.)

Pasterize - Water at 160 degrees for 20 minutes.

Solar - Fill small transparent container 3/4 fill and shake for 20 seconds, finish filling. Place in direct sunlight for 5-6 hours, increase to 2 days if heavy cloud cover. (This will not remove chemicals, tastes, or smells and will not treat large volumes.)

Iodine - Comes in different solutions - follow the instructions on what you buy. The amount needed varies with the water's temperature, PH and strength of the iodine. (Not recommended for pregnant women or long term use.)

(Colloidal) Silver - is antimicrobial and will treat water, but not all colloidal silver solutions are the same, so read the label.

(Powdered) Chlorine - (Sodium Dichloro-s-triazinetrione) a powdered bleach that stores from 10-12 years. Must be 99% Sodium Dichloro-s-triazinetrione (check the label). This is powerful stuff, use with care. 1/4 tsp. treats a 55 gallon drum (I said it was powerful). A slight chlorine smell should be present 24 hours after, if not, repeat the process.

In any/all of these methods always remember to clarify first.


Intestesting facts:
- The human body is about 60% water for adult males and 55% water for adult females.
- If you're an average adult, every day you lose more than 10 cups (close to 2.5 liters) of water simply by sweating, breathing and eliminating waste.
- Eating food will cause the body to dehydrate. (No water = No food)
- Dehydration occurs when you lose more fluid than you take in, and your body doesn't have enough water and other fluids to carry out its normal functions. If you don't replenish lost fluids, you may suffer serious consequences.
- With an outside temperature of 90 degrees you can live without water for a maximum of 7 days, in 100 degree weather that is cut to 5 days. (The average summer temp in Salt Lake City is 88 degrees, the average summer temp in St. George is 99 degrees.) Also, I would cut 1-2 days off of that max, because in those last 2 days you will probably wish you could die.

So, I think it's safe to say that next to breathing, water is the pretty dang essential!

How much water? How do I store water? How do I clean water? There are so many questions regarding water and what to do with it I could write FOREVER, but I am just going to list a few basics. What I know and what I do.

How much water?
Guideline - 1 gallon per person per day with minimal activity. 14 gallons for 2 weeks per person or one 55 gallon barrel for a family of 4. I store one 55 gallon barrel per person for 2 weeks. This may seem a bit much, but this is drinking, cooking, bathing, cleaning, everything. More water is ALWAYS better than less.

Families with small children, pets, warm climates and those performing physical labor need to double the suggested numbers.

How do I store water?
Store in food grade, clean (preferrably new) containers. They make water barrels in a variety of sizes and even shapes, this is what I use. They also make water store boxes. Make sure everything is clean/sterile. If using water barrels do not store on cement, put a couple 2x4's underneath the barrels, also, do not store the water barrels where they risk being in direct sunlight, one word algae, no one wants to drink green water - even if it is clean.

You can also store water by buying cases of platic water bottles. Please keep in mind that these have expiration dates and that plastic absorbs the smells of whatever surrounds it. Store away from harmful chemicals or strong odors.
Example: Water bottles in the garage taste like exhaust, gasoline, etc.

For "other use" water (washing, etc.) water stored in 2 liter pop bottles works. If you are not drinking it you don't have to be as picky, but I'd still be careful.

Store where leakage would not be a problem. Protect from heat, light, and freezing. Plastic milk jugs do not seal well.

*To restore taste to stale water, poor back and forth between 2 clean containers to add air to the water.


Let's just get this out of the way shall we... What is up with the name of this blog?

Answer: My husband, Harley, has for as long as we've been married teased me about my food storage and the "Zombie Apocalypse" (as he would put it). Yet, I have continued to buy extra and try to get prepared for "just in case" as much as possible. He has learned over the years that this "just in case" attitude is pretty awesome.

Examples: Harley - Honey I just finished ______(fill in with food items, toothpaste, etc.), do we have any more? Amber - Of course, here.
Harley - I wish I had some _________(cookies, cereal, etc.). Amber - I'm pretty sure there is some in the basement or pantry.

Because he continues to tease me (even though he benefits) I have decided to make him sing my praises everytime I come to the rescue. So, when we are out somewhere and he has a headache and wants the Aleve, I make him say "You are the coolest most prepared woman I know." Or when the kids need something and I magically have it, when I can run downstairs in the middle of cooking dinner instead of going to the store - Harley says "You are the coolest most prepared woman I know."

Truthfully, I am not, I am SO FAR from it, but preparedness is near and dear to my heart so here goes!

(Disclaimer: I am not an expert, heck I'm not even that smart, but here you will find things I've read, learned, tried, etc. in regards to Preparedness. I am not perfect! I am just one girl talking about something I feel passionate about - Period.)
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