All posts by Tom

Survival Sunday – 12/14/14

Survival Sunday – 12/14/14

I want to start this weeks segment of Survival Sunday by apologizing for missing last week’s installment. Life seemed to be leaving me less time than I needed to get everything done last week. I will cover one thing that I wanted to include had I done Survival Sunday last week.

The 7th of December, 1941 was the day that the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, Hawaii and marked the entrance of the United States into the Second World War. I had the distinct honor and privilege of hearing the firsthand story of Brigadier General (Ret.) Robert Hardaway, an Army surgeon who was at the Schofield Barracks hospital when the attacks occurred that morning. He told us that he heard the sounds of the planes outside and when he looked, he saw so many airplanes that they could not all be counted. When he noticed the way the warbirds were painted, he told his wife that it was probably a training exercise where U.S. planes had been painted. Obviously that was not the case. He went on to perform surgery on dozens of casualties for the next 48 hours, even covering his head with a blanket and using a flashlight when a blackout order was issued. His story was absolutely amazing. It saddens me to think that we are running out of time with these amazing veterans who endured more than we could ever imagine. If you want to read about some heroes, check out the stories of America’s Greatest Generation.

Survival

Here are the things that I found this last week for today’s edition of Survival Sunday:

15 Brilliant Uses For Buckets – Buckets are great for everything! These are some great uses for buckets, regardless of whether you are experiencing a disaster or not. I enjoyed reading this list because I had not heard of some of these uses for buckets before.

Bugging In vs Bugging Out: How To Decide In An Emergency – The decision on whether to bug in or bug out in an emergency is a huge sticking for almost everyone that has considered it. There are the extremists who think that no matter what, they will always either bug in or bug out but there are those who are somewhere in the middle. The moderates if you will. I tend to be a moderate. This article will give you some food for thought and a few pointers if you ever find yourself needing to decide which direction is right for you.

How To Make A Homemade Long Bow With Wood From The Hardware Store – This is a great tutorial from Dale at Survivalist Prepper on how he made a long bow using wood that he got at his local hardware store. I read Dale’s article a while back but kept forgetting to share it. If you enjoy doing projects, this might be a good survival related project to do. The results are great and I will be honest, I am thinking about making my own. If you have not already, make sure to check out Dale’s podcast. It is one of my favorites and a great source of preparedness information.

30 Reasons To Carry A Handkerchief – There are some pretty well known reasons to carry a handkerchief, especially in the event of a survival situation. Here are 30 of those reasons. My take is that there are just too many uses and handkerchiefs are too light and compact to not have at least a few of them in all of your kits.

Custom Made Bullet Casing Earbuds – This is exactly what it sounds like…a set of earbud headphones that are made with a set of bullets casings. While not a practical prep, they are ridiculously cool! They would also make a great gift.

33 Brilliant Non-Traditional Preps – Here is another great article from Gaye over at Backdoor Survival. The regular list of preparedness items seems to be about the same no matter where you see it. This list is a few of the items you don’t typically hear about but would be great to include in your preparedness plans.

What Makes You A Prepper? – This is an interesting article from the Florida Hillbilly about what exactly makes someone a prepper. Using a personal experience, DB shares what it is exactly that does or doesn’t make someone a prepper.

Those are my best finds of survival related gems around the web last week. I hope everyone has a blessed week and continues to prepare for the difficult times ahead.

What did you find last week that everyone could benefit from?

Make sure to check back next week for another edition of Survival Sunday!

If you appreciate the content here on The Prepared Ninja, I would love it if you left a comment or shared a post with your friends or loved ones! We are all in this together after all, right? With that being said, it does cost me money every month to keep The Prepared Ninja up and running. If the site does help you and you would like to help support it, you can provide monetary support to help keep things going via PayPal here. Thank you!

Food Storage Hacks

Food Storage Hacks

Access to food and nutrition is not only a human need, it is a right.  It must not only be accessible, but also sufficient, safe and affordable.  Unfortunately, this right has turned into a privilege for people living in poverty who have limited access to food.  The disruption of food production and distribution are also causes for hunger and malnutrition worldwide.  Food shortage in this respect is usually caused by natural disasters like calamities, drought, and floods and also by manmade disasters such as war and conflict.

Scientists from the Stanford University and the University of Washington estimate that half of the world is at risk of facing severe food shortages by the end of the century because of changing weather patterns.  They estimate a 20 to 40% reduction in harvest of dietary staples like rice.  With the world population expected to double by 2100 and agricultural land expected to deplete, food shortage becomes even more likely.

Food Storage Hacks

This is the reason why the United States Civil Defense is already recommending the creation of a food storage program wherein a family stores food and drink adequate for a two-week period.  Man cannot control calamities and disasters but human beings can be taught to prolong the shelf life of food.  It is good to have your own survival food storage guide that will come in handy in times of emergencies. This will not only serve as emergency food supply but also a way to inspire future generations to always be ready.  Below are several food storage hacks to keep food from rotting too fast and have it stay fresher for longer.

Paper Towel Treatment for Veggies

Whether air-dried or placed in a refrigerator, vegetables do not usually maintain freshness for a week.  An effective food storage tip is placing a paper towel in the bag where your veggies are to be stored.  The paper towel will soak up extra moisture to prevent rot.  For greens like lettuce, make sure the bag or container is closed but for zucchini, cucumber and beans leave the bag open.  For fresh herbs, wrap a moist paper towel around them to keep them fresh for a longer period.

Two Is Better Than One

Even in food storage, it is better with a partner.  For example, if you have an avocado leftover already cut in half, place it in an airtight container with a piece of cut up onion.  The gases from the red onion that make your eyes burn also prevent oxidation.  This will keep an already sliced avocado from browning for at least five days.  Onion works for guacamole, too.

Keep your potatoes from sprouting by storing them with an apple.  The ethylene gas from apples does the trick.  By doing this, potatoes stay firm and sprout-free for eight weeks.

Tossing a slice of apple or orange peel in brown sugar will prevent it from hardening.  Adding a few marshmallows can also keep brown sugar clump free.  Celery and bread also go well together.  Put the loaf in a plastic bag with a fresh celery stick and leave it overnight.  The celery stick gives off humidity that the bread can absorb to keep giving it fresher taste and bounce.

Vinegar for Berries

Give your strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries a sour bath using one cup of white vinegar and three cups of water as solution.  The pH level of the vinegar kills spores and bacteria and gives the fruits longer shelf life.  Rinse them thoroughly and put them in a container lined with paper towels.  Make sure to leave the lid slightly open to avoid moisture build-up.

Storage for Ages

Aside from airtight containers, those brown paper bags are also good for food storage.  Punch holes on a bag and put your onions and garlic.  They will remain fresh for three months. Using an old panty hose to hang your onions is also a good trick.  They can last for as long as eight months.  Keeping diced herbs like celery sticks in a plastic bottle will also let it retain its freshness.

Use a vacuum sealer to lengthen the shelf life of many food items whether for the pantry or the fridge.

It’s in the Tip

Wrapping the stem of bananas with plastic wrap will keep them from ripening too fast.  Removing the stem of tomatoes and storing them topside down will prevent them from going bad.  Cutting the tip of red chilies also keep them fresher for a month longer.  After you cut the tips, rinse them in cold water, dry them, and place them in a sealed container in the fridge.  Cut your herbs like you would flowers and throw them in a jar of water.  Put a plastic bag above them to keep them fresh.

The Rule for Leftovers

When there is a strong typhoon and you can’t get out of the house for a day or two, tendency is your leftovers become your emergency survival food.  Anticipate this and store your leftovers properly.  Put them in airtight containers or wraps.  Divide them into small containers so they will cool faster. Refrigerate leftovers within two hours of cooking and don’t stuff the ref too full because cool air needs to circulate to keep food at safe temperature.

Freeze to Extend Shelf life

Frozen food is also good for food stock in case of emergencies.  Freeze meat for a 50% longer shelf life.   Wrap meat in aluminum foil before putting in a container or plastic wrap and throwing them in the freezer.  The foil is good for a month’s storage.

To Freeze or Not To Freeze

The freezer is a food storage buddy.  However, remember that not everything should be stored in the fridge.  Aside from raw poultry and meat, butter, margarine, most bread, milk, and raw pastry are great for freezing.  On the other hand, vegetables with high water content such as lettuce and bean sprouts go limp in the fridge.  Soft herbs go brown, egg-based sauces like mayonnaise separate and curdle.  Yogurt and cottage cheese go watery.  Better to store them in room temperature.

Still Best After

As a general rule, obey expiration dates.  However, it is a relief to know that in times of emergencies, there are foods you can consume even if they are past the best before dates.  According to the Natural Resources Defense Council and Harvard School’s Food Law and Policy Clinic, nine out of 10 Americans waste food due to confusion over expiration date.  Note that the printed date is the manufacturer’s suggestion for when the food is at its freshest, not when it is unsafe.

Canned goods lead the pack when it comes to survival food kits.  Extend and even double their shelf life by storing them in a cool, dark place.  Frozen food also usually last longer than their expiration dates.  Packaged greens are okay for as long as they are not decaying.  Soak your lettuce in ice-cold water to restore some of its freshness.  For as long as dry goods like crackers and chips do not smell odd and funny, you may re-crisp them in the oven.

Aside from the food in your 72-hour survival kit, remember that there are food storage hacks you can do everyday to keep your produce and groceries longer in the shelf and keep from wasting good food.

Fire Bag Giveaway!

Fire Bag Giveaway!

It’s time for another giveaway! This week I am pleased to be a part of a giveaway for a Fire Bag and Thumb Drive Cover. It may sound a little different but that is because it is. This would be a great bag to keep handy in the event you needed to bail from the house because of a fire or if you work in a higher risk profession where your personal items need additional protection. The material the fire bag and thumb drive cover are made from is fire resistant and allows the owner to carry documents, precious metals, or other valuables out of harm’s way.

fire bag
ZquaredAway is kindly sponsoring this giveaway for the Prescott Fire Resistant Bag. ZquaredAway manufactures and sells a line of protective covers for home archival use. These patent pending bags have triple layered covers that will protect against flame, smoke, heat and the water application used to mitigate most house fires. Their motto “Fire Fighter Gear For What You Hold Dear” serves to protect many archival items and keepsakes to include wedding albums, emergency binders with important documents such as passports and birth certificates, scrapbooks, collections such as baseball cards, thumb drives, family home movies, baby books, genealogy documents, and much more. The Prescott Fire Resistant Bag, their largest cover is an ideal carrier for any prepper’s “grab and go” binder. These covers are manufactured in the U.S. and are currently sold on Amazon.com.Today’s giveaway includes The Prescott Fire Resistant Bag and the Outer Bank Thumb Drive Cover.

This Prescott Fire Resistant Bag and the Outer Banks Thumb Drive Cover is a sponsored giveaway and open to any resident who is 18 years of age or older who lives in one of the 48 US Contiguous States. This giveaway starts on Friday, Dec.5th at 5:00 am (MST) and ends on Friday, Dec.12th, 2014 at 5:00 pm (MST). The winner will be notified by email and will have 24 hours to respond. If we do not hear back from said winner in the designated time period of 24 hours we will choose another winner and they will have 24 hours to respond from the time the notification email is sent. Please check your SPAM email folders. Good luck to everyone! Let’s be prepared for the unexpected!
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Cyber Monday Survival Deals

Cyber Monday Survival Deals

The Monday after Black Friday has become known as Cyber Monday, a day where online retailers can post their best prices of the year. This offers online businesses the chance to boost annual revenues similar to their brick and mortar counterparts. For preppers, most suppliers and retailers of preparedness products are mostly online which make Cyber Monday the best opportunity to stock up at rock bottom prices!

Prepared Ninja partner, Black River Outpost is running a huge sale for Cyber Monday. There was just one problem, Rob and Don couldn’t quite wait all the way until Monday and have launched their sale a little early. If you are seeing this post, you can take advantage of their amazing Cyber Monday sale!

Here is a preview of some of the almost 200 items that are on sale:

Mayday 400 Calorie Food Bars – $1.23 Each, These have a shelf life over 5 years, weigh only a few ounces, and store well; even in ridiculous conditions.

3 LED Dynamo Squeeze Flashlight – ONLY $1.50!!! That is obscene! This is my favorite flashlight. At this price, you should buy at least four of them. You will not regret it!

Wild Cat Self Defense Keychain – $3.80,  This thing is cool and well over 50% off of retail! It would be a great defensive tool for anyone and will go a lot of places you would never even get a knife.

Datrex 2400 Calorie Emergency Ration – $3.45, This is an entire days worth of calories in one package. There are 12 bars individually wrapped and sealed in a foil package. They have a 5 year shelf life and store well, even in harsh conditions. There is a reason they are US Coast Guard approved!

Emergency Outdoor Double-Sided Mattress – $6.95, This is an awesome mattress for survival. I have seen similar mattresses sell for $20. At only half of a pound, it is perfect to attach to your bug out bag.

Spark One-Handed Fire Starter – $6.94, This is a sweet fire starter that frees up a hand. Instead of requiring two hands, you only need one which makes starting a fire so much easier. It also creates plenty of spark.

Live Fire Sport – Emergency Fire Starter – $3.76, This is the perfect item to accompany your one-handed fire starter! At less than an ounce, capable of burning 15 minutes or more, and featuring a slidable lid; the Live Fire Sport can be used more than once!

Streetwise Security Door Stop Alarm – $7.33, This would be a great gift for someone who travels or as a back-up alarm. It is a 120dB alarm that is ultra portable and runs off of only one 9 volt battery.

Gerber Gorge Folding Shovel – $13.95, A must have for the car, this shovel would also be great for a camping kit. This versatile tool is a steal at over 50% off.

Operators Field Bag – $19.95, A great bag for a go bag or blow out kit. It could be used by an operator or the layperson alike. It would also be an ideal bag to keep in the trunk or under your desk at work.

Czech M10 Gas Mask – $17.95, This is a smokin’ price for a gas mask! New and unissued, it would be great to have just in case things fall apart.

Adventure Medical Ultralight & Watertight .9 – $23.54, This is the perfect med kit for any survival kit or the glove box.

Israeli Civilian Gas Mask – $24.95, This is another super deal for a new and unissued gas mask.

Grand Trunk Double Parachute Hammock – $36.95, This is a great hammock that barely weighs a pound and will hold up to 400 pounds. It would be a good match for a bug out bag or wilderness survival kit.

Wise Foods 120 Serving Breakfast Only Bucket – $140.92, This bucket has 120 serving of three different breakfast cereals that will last up to 25 years! It would be a great start or addition to a food storage program.

These are only a few of the items. Check them all out here to see what else Black River Outpost is practically giving away!

Don’t forget, all orders over $50 come with free flat rate shipping and purchased items qualify for loyalty points.

Survival Sunday – 11/30/14

Survival Sunday – 11/30/14

It is the last day of November! Where has the year gone? It seems like time just flies by, except for when I am at my real job. Which reminds me, today is Sunday. This means another week has come and gone so I will share what I found on the web last week in the way of preparedness and survival tidbits. It also means that I have to go to work tomorrow. (Insert semi-audible grumble here.)

I hope that everyone had a great Thanksgiving. I know that I enjoyed my time with my family and friends. It also seems to be the event that happens every year that actually makes me feel like Christmas is on the way. Believe it or not, all of the early decorating and premature playing of Christmas music by retailers does not do the trick.

We already got our fabulously fake Christmas tree put up.

Christmas Tree

It helps a little bit but I dislike the fact that we have a fake tree. Sometimes economics justifies needing to make a decision that we don’t always prefer. As a plus, there is no need to water or sweep up pine needles all the time. Enough about that. On with the show!

Survival Sunday

Here are the things that I found this last week for todays edition of Survival Sunday:

20 Best Camping/Survival Gift Ideas For Kids – This is a great list of gift ideas for the little prepper in your life from Graywolf Survival. And don’t worry…while you may shoot your eye out, the classic Red Ryder BB gun does not make an appearance on this list. I actually think that it should be so I will say that I would add a BB or pellet gun to the list. They are a great tool to teach a youngster the basics of firearms and fundamentals of gun safety. Here is the model that I grew up with.

5 Tips To Cure Nature Deficit Disorder In Your Child – Todd at Survival Sherpa put together this great article about getting kids back out in nature. I personally believe this is something that should be a priority. There are many problems that we face with our youth that could potentially be addressed by a little time outside. This is a practice that probably shouldn’t be limited to just children!

Why Professionals Don’t “Shoot To Wound” – This is a great summary of why armed encounters by professionals like police officers and soldiers go the way they do. I would add that from a personal defense standpoint, you should not shoot to wound because a dead assailant no longer a threat. Period.

The Preparedness Review – Tomorrow is the launch of the next edition of The Preparedness Review. This is a downloadable and printable collection of some of the best preparedness and survival related material available. Make sure that you check it out. You will be missing out on a valuable resource if you do not.

It’s not a whole lot, but this wraps up my best finds of survival related gems around the web last week. I hope everyone has a blessed week and continues to prepare for the difficult times ahead.

What did you find last week that everyone could benefit from?

Make sure to check back next week for another edition of Survival Sunday!

If you appreciate the content here on The Prepared Ninja, I would love it if you left a comment or shared a post with your friends or loved ones! We are all in this together after all, right? With that being said, it does cost me money every month to keep The Prepared Ninja up and running. If the site does help you and you would like to help support it, you can provide monetary support to help keep things going via PayPal here. Thank you!

Black Friday & Happy Thanksgiving

Black Friday & Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving! I look forward to Thanksgiving every year. It is a great time to eat some awesome food, spend time with those I love, and remember everything we are thankful for. I hope that each and every one of you is having a great day, some great food, even better company, and most importantly…something to be thankful for.

This year I am very thankful for:

  • My life and health.
  • My wife and sons.
  • Supportive parents and family.
  • A way to provide for those I love.
  • The Prepared Ninja and YOUR support!

Y’all mean a lot to me! And it means a lot that you are willing to spend your time with me here at The Prepared Ninja. I hope it is helpful.

So if today is Thanksgiving, that makes tomorrow the ominous, yet somehow greatly anticipated, Black Friday. There used to be only two types of Black Friday shoppers, those who were and those who were not. I would have to say that there are now more than that; those who shop in store, shop online, both, or none of the above. As a result of multiple combat deployments and the annual trampling deaths, I choose to do some online shopping if there is something that I am in need of and/or desire. What is great is that this year there are some great deals being offered! Including some great stuff from my Prepared Ninja partners.

Camping Survival is running a Black Friday sale on ALL of their fish and bird antibiotics. For those who are not familiar, fish and bird antibiotics are manufactured in the same facilities and by the same people who make the antibiotics you would get from your family doctor. All they do is put the same medication in different packages. One package says something along the lines of send to the pharmacy and charge people a lot of money for it and the other one is for the pet store. Check out their great prices!

Black Friday

Have you heard of Conflicted, the game? I am excited to have partnered with JD from Conflicted to offer you all a smokin’ deal for Black Friday on this awesome game for preppers, by preppers. For those who are not familiar, Conflicted puts the players into the role of the leader of a survival or bugout group and allows the players to discuss their courses of action when faced with a myriad of survival scenarios. It is also specifically named Conflicted because that is exactly where you will find yourself when evaluating what you will do when forced to survive. Follow this link to get an awesome deal on Conflicted.

Black Friday

So that is what I will be purchasing tomorrow for Black Friday. I also have my eye on a generator that is more than half off at Sam’s Club. Just remember to stay safe and be aware of the situations in which you find yourself.

The sales don’t stop there, be on the look out for some other great deals coming up on Cyber Monday!

Forgetful Am I!

Forgetful Am I!

(In my best Yoda voice.)

There are days where I really wish that I had better memory and concentration. Oh wait! That is every day. Some day I hope that this will change, but in the mean time I will just have to keep chugging along and do the best I can. Until it does get better, my wife will constantly remind me of how forgetful I am. If for some reason she forgets, my kids will pick up the slack and say something. At any rate, I meant to mention something yesterday in my weekly Sunday Survival that I failed to do.

Prepared Ninja partner, Black River Outpost has put together a great opportunity to get a LifeStraw Water Filter for less than $20 with free shipping and a bonus of 10 feet of premium, 7 strand paracord (the real deal). This is an additional value of anywhere from $5 and up depending on where you are at in the world.

Forgetful

For those who are not familiar with the LifeStraw, it is the perfect water filter to throw in your kit, keep in the car, or to even have one in your desk drawer in case the poo hits the spinning thing. It is not necessary to even have a container to put your water in! The LifeStraw can be placed right into any water source and clean, potable water can be sucked right out. It is only a couple of ounces and can be easily stashed just about anywhere.

I think the question now is, so why make a big deal about a little water filter? I’ll tell you why. The LifeStraw is already a smokin’ deal at $20 and then to add free shipping AND 10 feet of free cordage is too good to pass up. This bonus package will also not be around forever. Get your LifeStraw deal today before it is too late!

Plus if you wait, you may end up forgetting. Let me tell you, it rarely pays to be forgetful!

Check out the rest of the particulars about the LifeStraw:

  • Surpasses EPA guidelines for E. coli, Giardia (beaver fever), and Cryptosporidium oocysts, and many others.
  • Reduces water turbidity, filters particles of approximately 0.2 microns.
  • Filters up to 264 gallons (1000 liters) of contaminated water per manufacturer.
  • Contains no chemicals. Does NOT contain iodinated resin (iodine): safe for your thyroid gland. BPA-free.
  • Will not allow water to flow when it reaches capacity.
  • The choice of NGOs for worldwide humanitarian relief since 2005. A portion of sales goes to support clean water projects worldwide.
  • No after-taste. LifeStraw® has no after-taste, since no chlorine, iodine or other chemicals are used.
  • No waiting time. You can drink from your LifeStraw right away. There is no need to wait for water to drip or chemicals to act.
  • 5-year shelf life: Can be stored and used periodically. The shelf life is not reduced if the LifeStraw is used occasionally and then put back in storage.
  • LifeStraw® meets or exceeds EPA standards for efficacy. LifeStraw® was successfully assessed in laboratory conditions (harsher conditions than what is required by the EPA in terms of turbidity and organic matter), up to 1600 liters (approximately 160% of design life). Independent testing at the University of Arizona showed that LifeStraw® exceeds the EPA requirements of LOG 6 reduction for bacteria and LOG 3 reduction for protozoan parasites. Bacteria removed include: Escherichia coli (“E. Coli”), Campylobacter, Vibrio cholerae (“Cholera”), Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Shigella, Salmonella. Protozoa removed include: Giardia lamblia (“Beaver Fever”), Cryptosporidium parvum (“Crypto”), Entamoeba histolytica.

Survival Sunday On The Web – 11/23/2014

Survival Sunday On The Web

Another week has come and gone and I am still here. That is a good thing I believe. My wife hasn’t told me otherwise anyway! I had a busy week trying to balance all of my commitments which makes it hard to focus on getting prepared. This can be a challenge we all face, not just with preparedness but with life in general. I hope that you all are doing well and have had a great week.

preparedness

The internet is loaded with great information about survival, preparedness, homesteading, security, self-reliance, and literally just about anything you could possibly think of. I feel that it is important to share anything that could be valuable to all of us. Here are a few things that I found this last week for todays edition of Survival Sunday:

Gag Gifts For Preppers: The 2014 Holiday Guide – Dan from the Daily Prep put together a holiday gift guide that has some pretty interesting ideas because he looks at it from a gag gift angle. There are some pretty interesting and funny ideas here but don’t worry, there are some legitimate ideas too. The one thing I noticed was missing was dehydrated water.

Peasant Bread: The Easiest Bread You Will Ever Make – I have not had the chance to try this recipe yet but it looks delicious and fairly simple to make. It will be added to my recipe inventory.

What Prepping Supplies Do I Need – Bug Out Bags – This is a great list from Dale over at Survivalist Prepper about the basics of supplies to include in your bug out bag. It is not a one size fits all list but it is a great foundation for putting a bag together.

How Do I Store That? Powdered Milk – Food storage is important but it is not always straight forward. This is great information from Preparedness Mama on the storage and repacking of powdered milk for storage.

4 Questions To Ask When Prioritizing Emergency Preparedness Goals – It can be hard to decide when to do what or what to do when. Angela from Food Storage and Survival has put together a few questions that everyone should answer when setting and prioritizing their survival and emergency preparedness goals.

This wraps up my best finds of survival related gems around the web last week. I hope everyone has a blessed week and continues to prepare for the difficult times ahead.

What did you find last week that everyone could benefit from?

Make sure to check back next week for another edition of Survival Sunday!

If you appreciate the content here on The Prepared Ninja, I would love it if you left a comment or shared a post with your friends or loved ones! We are all in this together after all, right? With that being said, it does cost me money every month to keep The Prepared Ninja up and running. If the site does help you and you would like to help support it, you can provide monetary support to help keep things going via PayPal here. Thank you!

Food & WaterBrick Giveaway

There is another great giveaway this week! I’ve teamed up with the Prepared Bloggers and EarthEasy to give away some food and waterbricks. Check out the details below.

Foodandwaterbricks

FoodBrick and WaterBrick Giveaway!

Eartheasy.com has graciously agreed to sponsor a pre-Thanksgiving Giveaway to one of our loyal readers so they can get their food and water storage off the ground! Today you get the opportunity to win FOUR waterbricks and FOUR foodbricks! The WaterBricks can hold up to 3.5 Gallons of water, and are sturdy enough to stack up to 4 feet tall. They are small enough to slide under a bed, and light enough (even when full) to be easily carried with their handy handle. The FoodBricks are the same size as the waterbrick, but they are specifically designed to pack, stack, and store food. They interlock and stack perfectly with the waterbricks. Both bricks are made of heavy, durable, BPA-free food grade plastic. Food and WaterBricks are perfect for preparedness, disaster relief, or any outdoor activity like boating, rafting, camping, tailgating, and more, and you can enter to win your very own set of EIGHT food and waterbricks (4 of each) today!

Meet the Bloggers Involved

The Busy B Homemaker
Home Ready Home
The Prepared Ninja
Living LIfe in Rural Iowa
Prepared Housewives
Food Storage and Survival
Blue Yonder Urban Farms
The Rural Economist
Abundant Living with Less
Are We Crazy or What?
The 7 P’s Survival Blog
Prepared in Every Way
Preparedness Mama
Stop Existing and Start Living
The Tattooed Homestead
Apartment Prepper
Homestead Lady
Trailer Park Homesteader
The Easy Homestead
Fabulous Farm Girl
Little Blog on the Homestead

Terms and Conditions

This FoodBrick and WaterBrick Giveaway is sponsored by Eartheasy.com, and is open to any resident who is 18 years of age or older who lives in one of the 48 US Contiguous States. This giveaway starts on Monday, Nov. 17th at 6:00 am (CST) and ends on Sunday, Nov. 23th, 2014 at 6:00 pm (CST). The winner will be notified by email and will have 24 hours to respond. If we do not hear back from said winner in the designated time period of 24 hours we will choose another winner and they will have 24 hours to respond from the time the notification email is sent. Please check your SPAM email folders. Good luck to everyone!

Enter!

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Sunday Survival On The Web – 11/16/14

Survival Sunday On The Web

Happy Sunday! This week has been pretty busy and left me a little short on the preparedness finds but I did discover a few things that will hopefully add some value for you all.

Preparedness

The internet is loaded with great information about survival, preparedness, homesteading, security, self-reliance, and literally just about anything you could possibly think of. I feel that it is important to share anything that could be valuable to all of us. Here are a few things that I found this last week for todays edition of Survival Sunday:

4 Life-Saving Tips For Vehicle Preparedness – I know that I am guilty of most often assuming that I will be at home if a disaster were to hit. This is not always the case. Besides home and work, most of my remaining time is spent in the car. This makes having a plan for survival on the road not only necessary but probably pretty smart. Check out these tips from Patrick Blair over at Survival at Home.

How To Build A Sturdy Takedown Bucksaw – This is a project that I have seen before but this tutorial from Todd at Survival Sherpa is the best. A bucksaw is a mandatory piece of equipment to have on hand anyway and can be a make or break in a survival situation. If you are not too handy or would prefer to not build your saw, check out this 21″ Sven Saw that breaks down for easy inclusion in your bag or kit.

Keep Your Power Out Supplies Together – This is a project that we have undertaken at our house but this article takes it to a whole new level. Our black out kit consists of the bare essentials to see in the dark. This article is awesome and will have you doing everything in the dark!

Getting Preps Ready For Winter – This is an article that has some great information about getting ready for winter as a prepper. I will be honest though, it is also just a great reminder to see this info from a preparedness perspective because it is a great reminder. We need to remember to not only obtain the skills and equipment that we need to be prepared but maintain them as well.

This wraps up my best finds of survival related gems around the web last week. I hope everyone has a blessed week and continues to prepare for the difficult times ahead.

What did you find last week that everyone could benefit from?

Make sure to check back next week for another edition of Survival Sunday!

If you appreciate the content here on The Prepared Ninja, I would love it if you left a comment or shared a post with your friends or loved ones! We are all in this together after all, right? With that being said, it does cost me money every month to keep The Prepared Ninja up and running. If the site does help you and you would like to help support it, you can provide monetary support to help keep things going via PayPal here. Thank you!

James Rawles from Survivalblog.com – Q & A

Q & A With James Rawles From Survivalblog.com

I recently wrote a review of Expatriates by James Wesley, Rawles (JWR for short) and as part of that review I was provided the opportunity to ask a few questions of JWR. (Like a bonehead, I forgot to include the Q & A with my review post.) This was both an honor and a daunting task for me. What I mean by that is that Mr. James Rawles is with certainty, one of the foremost authorities on modern survival. I wasn’t sure at first what I was going to ask him. Of course I had about 100 questions I wanted to ask him but I wanted them to be questions that may be able to help you all as readers of The Prepared Ninja. For those of you who may not be familiar with James Rawles, he is the founder of survivalblog.com, a preparedness consultant, and an expert on all things modern survival.

James Rawles

I hope you enjoy his insight:

1. Expatriates is in part, the story of a family living in the Philippines and a man living in Australia, all Americans, who are forced to ride out a global collapse abroad. If you were forced to choose a location out of the United States to live, where would you go?

I’d much rather stay here, but if forced to move, I would consider Belize, Uruguay, Chile, or perhaps some of the less populous small islands in the central Philippines.

2. While many of us would argue that the United States is slipping away from our roots, what makes the U.S. a great place to weather the storm if there were a disaster?

Our diverse economy, our rich natural resources, livable climate, and the fact that we are a net food exporter.

3. What surprises you most about the success you have achieved with Survival Blog and your books?

The market longevity of my books has amazed me. For example, my nonfiction book How To Survive The End of the World as We Know It has been in Amazon.com’s top 3,000 books for five years, and it is still ranked #4 in their Survival and Emergency Preparedness category. In a book market where most titles go out of print within 18 months, my books have had remarkably long legs.

4. If you could go back to the beginning and start prepping all over again, what is the primary thing you would do differently?

I would get an earlier start at growing fruit and nut trees. They do take a long time to reach their full potential.

5. Of the many items that are considered essential to being prepared for difficult times, what is the item that is most important to really do your homework on prior to purchasing and is worthwhile to spend the extra money for the highest quality?

Water filter quality ranges from abysmal to outstanding. Do your homework, folks!

6. As a parent, did you find it challenging to get your children involved in survival and preparedness?

No. It is part of our lifestyle. The challenge for us is getting our kids to understand the unprepared mindset of outsiders.

7. What are some pointers that you could provide to other parents that are interested in getting their children more involved in preparedness?

Make prepping and self-sufficiency fun for kids. It should not be seen as drudgery. Encourage your kids to excel in areas where they show a particular interest. For example, two of our kids really enjoy riding our horses.

8. As a veteran I have found that my military service revealed a side of our government that I was not previously familiar with, and not in a good way. Do you find that your military service motivated you to ensure that you were the best prepared that you could be?

Yes, my working in intelligence enlightened me about the vulnerability of western societies. I also gained a full appreciation of the effectiveness of weapons of mass destruction, and precision guided munitions. That was all the more reason to move to a remote, lightly populated region. I don’t want to end up “down range” of any of those weapons!

9. Do you believe that the average person can actually be prepared to survive the majority of threats that we face?

Absolutely. While there is no absolute “ultra safe place”, simply prepping while living in the suburbs will give people a substantially better chance of survival in most scenarios.

10. What advice do you have for someone who is reading this interview but has not taken any steps to get prepared for the tough times ahead?

Take the time to read SurvivalBlog’s Quick-Start Guide for Preparedness Newbies.

I really appreciate Mr. James Rawles taking the time to share his thoughts on survival and the current global environment. Hopefully it was helpful for you all. If you haven’t read them already, make sure to check out all of JWR’s books (available online and at most major book retailers). They are all great!

Veterans Day 2014 – Always Remember

Happy Veterans Day 2014!

I just wanted to say that I hope everyone has enjoyed their Veterans Day 2014 today. It is a time to have fun and hopefully get a respite from work as we celebrate the sacrifices that have been made by the uniformed service members of the United States.

Veterans Day 2014
My 2nd Tour in Iraq, 2005-2006

This is a special day to me because I made the choice to serve my country and to support and defend the Constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic. This has come at a price. There are many days that I missed with my wife and kids. Christmas and birthdays came and went and I was in the middle east just hoping for the chance to call and wish them a Merry Christmas or happy birthday. But even as hard as that was, there are many of my friends, brothers and sisters in arms, who have come back missing a part of themselves.

There is nothing wrong with having a good time today. In fact, I am making the best of my day by grilling hamburgers with my family and friends. My hope though is that you will all take the chance today to at least pause for a moment and think about everyone out there who has gone above and beyond so that we can live the life we have.

I also wanted to share a little bit of what the Department of Veterans Affairs has to say about the history of Veterans Day.

In November 1919, President Wilson proclaimed November 11 as the first commemoration of Armistice Day with the following words: “To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations…”

The United States Congress officially recognized the end of World War I when it passed a concurrent resolution on June 4, 1926, with these words:

Whereas the 11th of November 1918, marked the cessation of the most destructive, sanguinary, and far reaching war in human annals and the resumption by the people of the United States of peaceful relations with other nations, which we hope may never again be severed, and

Whereas it is fitting that the recurring anniversary of this date should be commemorated with thanksgiving and prayer and exercises designed to perpetuate peace through good will and mutual understanding between nations; and

Whereas the legislatures of twenty-seven of our States have already declared November 11 to be a legal holiday: Therefore be it Resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives concurring), that the President of the United States is requested to issue a proclamation calling upon the officials to display the flag of the United States on all Government buildings on November 11 and inviting the people of the United States to observe the day in schools and churches, or other suitable places, with appropriate ceremonies of friendly relations with all other peoples.

To read the entire history, visit the VA webpage.

It is important to know why we take this time of remembrance. Please make sure to share the true meaning of Veterans Day with your kids. I hope that you all have a great day!

Thank you for celebrating Veterans Day 2014 with me!

Survival Sunday On The Web – 11/9/14

Survival Sunday On The Web

It’s Sunday again and hopefully everyone’s week treated them well! One of the things that is on my mind as I go into this next week is Veteran’s Day and how the sacrifices of the few make such a tremendous difference for the majority. This is a sacrifice that comes at a great price. Even those of us who made it home without physical wounds still live every day with the memories of what we have done and seen. Make sure to thank a Veteran for everything that they have done for us and our country.

Survival SundayThe internet is loaded with great information about survival, preparedness, homesteading, security, self-reliance, and literally just about anything you could possibly think of. I feel that it is important to share anything that could be valuable to all of us. Here are a few things that I found this last week for todays edition of Survival Sunday:

The Psychology of Survival – Because Sometimes Prepping Just Isn’t Enough – I think there is something to be said about the mental aspect of prepping. There are a myriad of situations where you can have all the gear and training in the world but if your mind isn’t right, none of that may matter. This is some great insight into survival and how psychology plays a huge part.

Personal Protective Equipment For Biological Agents – There has been no shortage of news about Ebola and how it is becoming a global outbreak. This article covers personal protective equipment (PPE) that will work for not only Ebola but any sort of pandemic or outbreak. Not only are the various pieces of equipment covered but so are the levels of protection.

Reasons To (And Not To) Keep Chickens – Chickens are part of what I would like to implement into my long term survival strategy. I just need to get to a place where I can do it. Here are a few reasons to keep chickens if you are thinking about it and also a few reasons not to choose to keep chickens. It is good info to have if you are on the fence about it.

How To Wear a Bullet Proof Vest Correctly – This is another example of how having the right gear will only work to its maximum efficiency if it is correctly worn. There is also a chance to win a set of free body armor.

Why You Should Learn Wilderness Survival Skills – To be a well-rounded prepper it is imperative to know a variety of skills and this includes wilderness survival skills. Check this piece out on some of the reasons that you should learn these skills if you are not already convinced. This is actually the area that got me started into prepping. Just to be clear, I meant well-rounded in the sense of being experienced in a broad spectrum of skills, not just eating too much at the buffet. (Insert lame laughter here.)

Six Preparedness Tips For The Mobility Challenged – This is some great advice not just from the perspective of dealing with those who are already dealing with these challenges but because this is something that could happen to any one of us in a disaster situation. Plan for it now and it won’t be a game ender later.

This wraps up my best finds of survival related gems around the web last week. I hope everyone has a blessed week and continues to prepare for the difficult times ahead.

What did you find last week that everyone could benefit from?

Make sure to check back next week for another edition of Survival Sunday!

If you appreciate the content here on The Prepared Ninja, I would love it if you left a comment or shared a post with your friends or loved ones! We are all in this together after all, right? With that being said, it does cost me money every month to keep The Prepared Ninja up and running. If the site does help you and you would like to help support it, you can provide monetary support to help keep things going via PayPal here. Thank you!

18 Reasons Not To Suture A Wound

18 Reasons Not To Suture A Wound

Sutures, most commonly known as stitches, are the single most familiar method used to close a wound of any significance. It doesn’t seem to matter if it was a playground accident or a bar fight, there are many injuries that rely on being sewn (sutured) shut to promote healing and provide a pleasant looking end result. Not only because of their effectiveness but the level of appeal that sutures have, it seems that any wound that is serious in appearance warrants sutures in the eye of the person who does not know any better.

Suture

While there are probably hundreds, if not thousands of different types of lacerations and wounds that get sutured, there are many reasons NOT to suture a wound. This part can be tricky because when a wound is really long, deep, or both; it can seem like the only right thing to do is to close it up with sutures. This is not always the appropriate choice and the distinction is important to be able to make. This is especially true in a survival situation where further care may not be available within a reasonable distance, if at all.

Here are some of the most common reasons that a wound should not be sutured (contraindications):

  1. Any wound that is more than six hours old.
  2. A wound that is dirty with severe contamination that requires extensive cleaning or debridement.
  3. Some concave skin surfaces like the temple is best healed through secondary intention (natural healing).
  4. Complex structures like the eyelid require complicated repair and should not be closed.
  5. Damaged tissue, especially in severe wounds, crush injuries, and gunshot wounds.
  6. Any bite wounds whether from an animal or a human.
  7. All open fractures.
  8. Absorbable sutures should not be used where prolonged approximation (joining) of tissue under stress is required due to risk of potential tearing of the tissues.
  9. If the patient is set to go on a long journey/prolonged travel.
  10. All wounds that are a result of combat.
  11. Any wound that involves a tendon, nerve, or major blood vessel injury.
  12. Any wound that is so severe that anesthesia cannot be obtained without a toxic dose of local anesthesia or sedation.
  13. Silk sutures should not be used in any patient with an allergy to silk or silk products as well as in any location where permanent retention of tensile strength is required.
  14. Most open joint wounds.
  15. A wound should not be closed if antibiotics are not available to treat an infection if one becomes present.
  16. If the patient has a known allergy to collagen or chromium, neither plain or chromic gut sutures should be used to avoid potential allergic reaction.
  17. The wounds of a patient that is in severe shock should not be closed because of the risk that poor peripheral circulation could hinder proper wound repair and healing.
  18. Avoid suturing a wound that may have to be treated with skin grafting (degloving injuries, etc.)

With all of that being said, while the reasons listed above are all reasons to not suture a wound, many of these reasons are just indicators to delay closure of the same wound. You can take several of the reasons listed above to not suture a wound and change the circumstances by introducing the ability to clean the same wound or the availability of antibiotics and the reason to not suture the wound is gone. This may delay the closure but does not ultimately rule out sutures in the long run.

The importance of knowing when to suture a wound and perhaps more importantly, when not to is applicable to everyone. You may not be the one that is doing the suturing but you still need to know this information. What if you see a person that was going to suture a dirty wound shut? You now know that a dirty wound should not be closed. This knowledge could potentially save the life of that person. Closing that dirty wound could lead to an infection that if not properly treated could eventually result in death. It is probably just best to know better to begin with.

For more information about sutures, please download the Wound Closure Manual on the downloads page.

Survival Sunday On The Web – 11/2/14

Survival Sunday On The Web!

It’s Sunday again and that means another edition of Survival Sunday on the web! I hope that everyone has been enjoying their weekend and had the chance to relax a little. With that being said, the world does not seem to be getting any better. We have a president who refuses to be a leader and has allowed Ebola to continue to spread among the general populace while he imposes a 21 day quarantine on the Soldiers who he forced to go to Africa to help fight Ebola. Talk about a slap in the face to the service members who put their lives on the line to try to stop a disease! They try to stop it while Obama tries to spread it.

That reminds me…have you all read that our new Ebola Czar, Richard Klain, believes that one of the top challenges that global leadership faces today is overpopulation? I find that just a bit ironic.

Survival Sunday

The internet is loaded with great information about survival, preparedness, homesteading, security, self-reliance, and literally just about anything you could possibly think of. I feel that it is important to share anything that could be valuable to all of us. Here are a few things that I found this last week for todays edition of Survival Sunday:

Here is an awesome video about turning an old meat cleaver into a bush crafting knife-

Body Armor Giveaway! – There are still a few days to get in on this giveaway! AR500 Armor is giving away a body armor package that is valued at over $1300. This is a great chance to improve your defenses and peace of mind.

Financial Preparedness – One of the key areas to preparedness is financial security, both in the ability to prepare as well as be able to do what needs to be done in response to a disaster (leave a job if necessary, etc.). Check out Sean Ogle and Pat Flynn for some great info about creating your own independent income streams.

How To Scavenge After The SHTF – I have given thought to scavenging after a disaster before but I will be honest, I have never given specific thought to how I would do it. Alan on the Urban Survival Site has laid out not only a plan that would work for scavenging, but a list of places to check for useable items. This is something that should probably be printed out and added to your library or survival binder.

101 Low Cost Items To Barter When The SHTF – Gaye over at Backdoor Survival has put together a great list of barter items that are low cost to keep on hand in the event that things fall apart. It is a great list and practical because it is not a bunch of high cost items.

What The Government Is Really Saying… – This is a great article from Todd over at EdThatMatters about the current state of government and how it directly correlates with the need to be prepared. If you are not familiar with it, you should also check out one of Todd’s other sites, Prepper Website. It is loaded with the latest and greatest articles from the preparedness and survival community.

How To Prep Like A Spartan – Here is an interesting look at preparedness through the perspective of the ancient Spartan warrior. It is a unique, but applicable, view on how the mindset and training that the Spartan’s endured ties into modern preparedness.

This wraps up my best finds of survival related gems around the web last week. I hope everyone has a blessed week and continues to prepare for the difficult times ahead.

What did you find last week that everyone could benefit from?

Make sure to check back next week for another edition of Survival Sunday!

If you appreciate the content here on The Prepared Ninja, I would love it if you left a comment or shared a post with your friends or loved ones! We are all in this together after all, right? With that being said, it does cost me money every month to keep The Prepared Ninja up and running. If the site does help you and you would like to help support it, you can provide monetary support to help keep things going via PayPal here. Thank you!

Survival Giveaways!

I hope everyone is having a great week. It is Thursday and that makes me happy because the weekend is almost here!

There are always obstacles in life. There is no exception when it comes to getting prepared for tough times. It doesn’t matter whether it is time, money, or something else, the resources required for prepping can be hard to come by. This makes giveaways a great way to build on your preparedness efforts for a great price…FREE! Here are a few giveaways running right now that you might want to enter:

Trayer Wilderness Giveaway – I teamed up with Trayer Wildernesss and several other bloggers to giveaway a $75.00 gift certificate for the Trayer Wilderness store. They have some awesome stuff!

Maxpedition Backpack Giveaway – Make sure to enter the Maxpedition Vulture II backpack giveaway that I am doing with some other bloggers. This is a great bag for and survival kit.

Zombie & Dystopian Books Giveaway – The Survival Mom, Lisa Bedford is running a giveaway of several Zombie and Dystopian themed books during the Halloween season. One of the books being given away is Expatriates by James, Wesley Rawles that I just reviewed.

Survival Bunker Giveaway – Rising S Bunkers is giving away a 10 foot by 30 foot underground survival bunker complete with NBC air filtration, solar power, and a whole bunch of other stuff. It is the real deal!

AR500 Armor Giveaway – This is a body armor package valued at over $1300. It would be a great addition for your personal security.

I hope this helps! If there is anything else that I can do to help out, feel free to send me an email at tom@thepreparedninja.com.

Trayer Wilderness Giveaway

I am stoked today to offer up the chance to get in on another great giveaway. I’ve partnered up with Trayer Wilderness and some other preparedness bloggers to support the Trayer’s Handcrafted Christmas! The Trayer’s have agreed to give away a $75.00 gift certificate that is good for anything in their store! This is a great opportunity to get your hands on a great gift for the prepper in your life! (Or maybe even to get yourself a gift!) Make sure to enter the giveaway but also make sure you take the time to check out the Trayer Wilderness store.

Trayer Wilderness Handcrafted Christmas Giveaway

Trayer Wilderness Handcrafted Christmas Giveaway

Trayer Wilderness is offering

(1) $75.00 gift certificate, usable on their website towards any combination of their handcrafted items!

Who is Trayer Wilderness?

Welcome To Trayer Wilderness

Trayer Wilderness is a family of three homesteading traditionally off-grid in northern Idaho with 100% solar power. Their family consists of the Mountain Man, Glen Trayer, his Mountain Woman, Tammy Trayer and their Mountain Boy Austin. They utilize the land and their God given talents to earn an income while living their dream. All their items are handcrafted on their homestead offering a little bit of something for everyone with their girly homemade goats milk soaps, candles and melting bricks by the Mountain Woman, the elk hide leather moccasins and paracord survival items such as gun slings, belts, bracelets and more made by the Mountain Boy and the Mountain Man’s hand forged tools, survival fire tools, paracord items, decorative metal art and decorative metal horse shoe art. The Mountain Man also invented and fabricated three different tools for fire making called the Trayer Fire Tool, the MultiFlame Tool and the MultiFlame Mini Tool for the outdoor enthusiasts and survivalists. The Mountain Woman also has several e-books soon to be released at their website TrayerWilderness.com which will educate on solar living, building a traditional cabin, building a traditional smokehouse and more. Additionally, they will be adding e-courses in the new year offering more in depth education and training on blacksmithing, brain tanning, canning, soap making, etc. They offer a weekly newsletter that will keep you well informed on all they offer.

Here are some reviews on the Mountain Man’s Fire Tools:

Trayer Fire Tool

MultiFlame Mini Tool

MultiFlame Tool

They not only handcraft items in the wilderness, but they also educate on homesteading, natural health, healing and essential oils, wilderness survival, traditional and primitive skills, autism, whole foods and a gluten free and casein free diet, living off the land, off-grid and solar living and so much more. The Mountain Woman has a weekly radio podcast on the Survival Mom Radio Network and they share their information on many social media platforms and on YouTube. The Mountain Woman also writes for the New Pioneer Magazine, American Frontiersman, Prepare Magazine, Self Reliance Illustrated, Backwoodsman Magazine and Cabin Life Magazine. Be sure to connect with them below and check out their website to see what items you would purchase if you were the winner of their $75.00 gift certificate!

#TrayerWilderness

email trayer wilderness Trayer Wilderness on Facebook Trayer Wilderness on Google+ Trayer Wilderness on Twitter Trayer Wilderness on Pinterest Trayer Wilderness on YouTube Trayer Wilderness on Instagram Mountain Woman Radio from Trayer Wilderness on iTunes Tammy Trayer of Trayer Wilderness on LinkedIn Trayer Wilderness RSS Feed

 

Meet the Participating Bloggers

The bloggers listed in the Rafflecopter form below have come together to purchase this prize for one lucky contestant. As you click “Like” on the form, visit their pages and get to know them. Every time you like, comment on or share one of their posts, you are supporting their page. We all appreciate you so much.

Enter to Win

This giveaway is open to residents of the United States only. Entrants must be age 18 or older to enter. Giveaway runs from 12:00 am MST October 27th to 12:00 am MST November 3rd. Winner will be drawn November 3rd and emailed. The winner will have 48 hours to respond to the email before another entrant is chosen, so check your spam folders too!

Good luck!

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Sunday Survival On The Web 10/26/14

Happy Sunday Survival! I hope that you are all having a great weekend and are gearing up to not only survive the week ahead but the unknowns that our future may hold. It is imperative to be prepared because you never know what is going to hit and when it will happen. There has been a lot going on in my life this last week but I was still able to find some great stuff to share with you all.

Before I get to all of that though I wanted to ask if you have you gotten your free copy of Special Operations Forces Medical Kits guide yet? If you are a current WordPress subscriber and would like to receive a free copy of the Special Operations Forces Medical Kits guide, send an email to tom@thepreparedninja.com. Make sure that you use the email address you subscribed with. This is also going to be the last week that I will have updates going out through WordPress and MailChimp. After this week, I will be shutting down my WordPress subscriber database and will strictly use MailChimp.

Sunday Survival

The internet is loaded with great information about survival, preparedness, homesteading, security, self-reliance, and literally just about anything you could possibly think of. I feel that it is important to share anything that could be valuable to all of us. Here are a few things that I found this last week for todays edition of Sunday Survival:

Body Armor Giveaway! – AR500 Armor is giving away a body armor package that is valued at over $1300. This is a great chance to improve your defenses and peace of mind!

What If Your Apartment Has Ebola? – We are living in interesting times! Even if you do not watch the news or read the paper, we all know that Ebola is spreading and is a hot topic right now. This article by Bernie over at Apartment Prepper has some great advice about what to do if you find yourself living in close proximity to the Ebola virus.

Planning On Bugging Out? Some Things To Consider – It seems like the idea of bugging out in a survival situation is always viewed as being somewhat glamorous. Here is a look at some of the things that you should consider if this is part of your survival plan.

Build An EDC You Can Be Proud Of – Here is an area where I often fall short. It seems like putting together an Every Day Carry Kit, as simple as it should be, is often complicated because it can quickly become cumbersome. Here is a look at putting together a functional EDC set up.

How To Make An Emergency Shelter In 5 Minutes Or Less – Sometimes it seems like the simplest things are the best. This is especially true when you find yourself short on time. Todd at Survival Sherpa has put together a light weight, down and dirty plan for building an emergency shelter, quick.

Is Expired Food Safe To Eat? – This is a topic that I often find myself discussing with my wife. She will almost never eat anything, regardless of how the label reads, that is past the “expiration” date. Make sure to check out a little insight into what the information on our food labels actually means when it comes to the safety of eating it.

Ten Fall Preparedness Projects – The seasons are changing and that means that it is a good time to take care of some projects. We all have things we need to get done but here are some that we should focus on as preppers. I know that numbers 4 and 5 are the ones that are easy for me to forget, even though they are some of the easier and faster tasks on the list.

This wraps up my best finds of survival related gems around the web last week. I hope everyone has a blessed week and continues to prepare for the difficult times ahead.

What did you find last week that everyone could benefit from?

If you appreciate the content here on The Prepared Ninja, I would love it if you left a comment or shared a post with your friends or loved ones! We are all in this together after all, right? With that being said, it does cost me money every month to keep The Prepared Ninja up and running. If the site does help you and you would like to help support it, you can make a monetary donation to help keep things going via PayPal here. Thank you for your support!

Maxpedition Vulture II Backpack Giveaway

I am excited this week to be part of another great giveaway. A great group of fellow bloggers and I have joined up to give away a Maxpedition Vulture II backpack. The preparedness applications for this bag are almost endless. It would make a great bug out bag, car bag, day pack, or even a school bag. Don’t miss out on this great opportunity.

Maxpedition Vulture II

Maxpedition Vulture II Backpack Giveaway!

Whether you use this backpack for camping, hiking, cross-country skiing, or as an emergency pack, you are sure to love it. On the off-chance that you already have too many quality backpacks, this would make a fabulous gift for someone special!

Meet the Participating Bloggers

The bloggers listed in the Rafflecopter form below have come together to purchase this prize for one lucky contestant. As you click “Like” on the form, visit their pages and get to know them. Every time you like, comment on or share one of their posts, you are supporting their page. We all appreciate you so much.

Enter to Win

This giveaway is open to residents of the United States only. Entrants must be age 18 or older to enter. Giveaway runs from 12:00 am MST October 25th to 12:00 am MST November 2nd. Winner will be drawn November 2nd and emailed. The winner will have 48 hours to respond to the email before another entrant is chosen, so check your spam folders too!

Good luck!

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Common Mistakes Preppers Make

Today I wanted to do a post on some of the common mistakes that are made by preppers. It is a good topic to cover because I think we all make mistakes. Some of us (myself included) have made some stupid decisions that seemed like they would help one way or another but they never quite worked out.

As I started to type, I suddenly remembered that I had seen a great video over on The Daily Prep about common mistakes preppers make before. I did a little digging on YouTube and found the video! I understand that we all have a different way of presenting things but I didn’t feel like I could do it any better than Dan.

I really like Dan’s work. He has a great way of wording things. Did you hear anything that surprised you? I think even if we have heard all of this before that it can be an important reminder of what to steer clear of (or avoid doing again).

It is worth mentioning that there is more to Dan than his YouTube channel. If you visit his website, you will see a lot of useful information. He has a few great guides that he has put together and offers free to his subscribers! They are:

  • Pulling The Trigger: 6 Steps To Purchasing A Prepper Pistol
  • The “Average Joe’s” Guide To Long Term Food Storage
  • A Prepper’s Come To Jesus: The 8 Biggest Mistakes That Preppers Make (I believe this is the companion guide to the video above.)

Don’t miss out on the quiz that Dan has put together titled, “What Kind Of Prepper Are You?” My results were that I am a pantry prepping pro! I suppose that is a good thing. You wouldn’t want to be reading this if it turned out that I was a prepping idiot and have nothing to offer! Unless it was for entertainment of course.

Common Mistakes Preppers Make

It is always good to ensure that we all keep our focus and learn from one another. I appreciate Dan sharing a few common traps that we should all avoid. What do you think are some common mistakes preppers make? Did Dan miss anything?

Survival Sunday On The Web 10/19/14

I hope that everyone has had a great week! I want to start off this week with an apology. Last week I mentioned that I had migrated everyone but my WordPress subscribers over to MailChimp. This has been a good move but I made a big mistake! While I remembered to mention that new subscribers could get a free download, I failed to mention that my existing subscribers aren’t excluded! I am sorry for the omission. If you are a current subscriber and would like to receive a free copy of the Special Operations Forces Medical Kits guide, send an email to tom@thepreparedninja.com. Make sure that you use the email address you subscribed with.

Survival

The internet is loaded with great information about survival, preparedness, homesteading, security, self-reliance, and literally just about anything you could possibly think of. I feel that it is important to share anything that could be valuable to all of us. Here are a few things that I found this last week:

Building Tribe, Part I and Part II – This is a great two part article about putting together a group of like minded individuals. I like it because it takes a different approach than the average ‘build a prepper group’ article. These articles talk about the importance of people and not necessarily their practices. If you take your survival seriously, you will eventually need to band together with a tribe of your own.

Tips From A Storage Unit Auctioneer – There are many people who buy the contents of storage lockers who have been defaulted on as a way to find survival items. This is a great article about storage units that is full of useful tips from an experienced auctioneer who has not only sold storage units, but bought them as well. Whether you are buying abandoned storage lockers to profit or to prepare, this article is very useful.

39 Fantastic Prepping Tips – Here are some excellent tips on prepping and survival. Most of them are designed to be done in ten minutes or less. There are some great ones but one of my favorites is #8 – The 10 Minute DIY Water Distillery.

How To Filter & Purify Water – This is a great article that compiles several outstanding ways to get clean water in an emergency. It would be a great one to print out and add your files.

Build A Brick Rocket Stove – There are several options for cooking during a grid-down or survival scenario. Not all of them are quick, efficient, and cheap but this brick rocket stove is. It would be a great low-cost addition to anyones preps.

This wraps up my best finds of survival related gems around the web last week. I hope everyone has a blessed week and continues to prepare for any difficult times ahead.

What did you find last week that everyone could benefit from?

If you appreciate the content here on The Prepared Ninja, a monetary donation of any amount is always appreciated but I also appreciate any show of support whether it is a social media share or a comment about an article. If you would like to make a monetary donation of your own, it can be made via PayPal here. Thank you for your support!

Expatriates Book Review

I just finished reading the book Expatriates by James Wesley, Rawles  and I was not disappointed. In fact, this is my new favorite Rawles novel. It is not only entertaining, but informative as well. This is not the first JWR novel that I have read (they were all good) but Expatriates clearly demonstrates what I believe to be his best writing and a great amount of research to develop such intricate details throughout the book.

In previous installments of JWR’s writing, I was somewhat conflicted by the fact that the story was often broken up with the explanation of what the characters had done to prep or were doing to survive. Don’t get me wrong, the additional details are what makes his novels very helpful and they would lose some value if those facts were missing. I was pleasantly surprised by the fact that Expatriates seems to be a great balance of the helpful preparedness facts that are reminiscent of a JWR novel with a story that flows nicely.

Expatriates

The story of Expatriates is unique because it tells the story of a missionary family in the Philippines and a petroleum engineer in Australia, all Americans, and their struggles as they find themselves outside the United States during a major socioeconomic meltdown. Away from their family and systems of support at home, the Jeffords (missionary family) and Chuck Nolan (petroleum engineer) are forced to not only endure the fallout of the socioeconomic meltdown (referred to as the “Crunch” in Expatriates), but the ensuing power grab that is carried out by the newly radicalized Islamic government in Indonesia. It is not the typical “defend the homestead” type of post-apocalyptic thriller.

While a fictional account, Expatriates also gives the reader a good account of what guerrilla warfare is all about and what the actions of a few can actually accomplish. This is why, as a conventional force, we have fought in Iraq and Afghanistan for years without “winning” these wars. But even as the Guerrilla forces fight against an oppressive Islamic army, there is plenty of knowledge to be gleaned from the experiences that the characters in Expatriates go through. It is a great demonstration in the power and importance of community and relationship building. Without the relationships that were formed in the story, the outcome would have been very different.

Not only did I enjoy the story, I appreciated the various quotes that were printed at the beginning of each chapter. Here are two of my favorites:

Never forget, even for an instant, that the one and only reason anybody has for taking your gun away is to make you weaker than he is, so he can do something to you that you wouldn’t let him do if you were equipped to prevent it. This goes for burglars, muggers, and rapists, and even more so for policeman, bureaucrats, and politicians.

– Aaron Zelman and L. Neil Smith, Hope, 2001

The more I learn about people and society the more I love guns and explosives. Guns and explosives are more understandable, more predictable, and less hazardous.

-Joe Huffman, in his blog The View from North Central Idaho

This first quote represents one of the ways in which some of the world’s most well known dictators have risen to power. The second quote I like because it is true.

The bottom line is that Expatriates was a great read that I could not put down. It was entertaining, informative, and thought provoking. You will not be disappointed. If you have read any of James Wesley, Rawles novels, you will love Expatriates. If you like the post-apocalytic thriller genre, you should read this book. It is available online and from most major book retailers.

Other fiction titles from James Wesley, Rawles include:

Patriots: A Novel of Survival in the Coming Collapse

Survivors: A Novel of the Coming Collapse

Founders: A Novel of the Coming Collapse

And the soon to be released:

Liberators: A Novel of the Coming Global Collapse

In addition to these titles, JWR also has two great non-fiction books which are a great resource to either establish or grow your preparedness efforts. They are:

How to Survive the End of the World as We Know It: Tactics, Techniques, and Technologies for Uncertain Times

Tools for Survival: What You Need to Survive When You’re on Your Own

2014 Midterm Elections – Make Or Break?

I have great concern over the direction that the country is headed. With that being said, I am even more concerned about how the results of the 2014 midterm elections will impact some major issues. Earlier this year, the president opted to postpone executive action on immigration because of the potential impact of the midterms this fall. Legislative action did not come together for the president so in true Obama form, he was threatening to make another royal decree take executive actions on immigration. To me this means that if the Dems were concerned that this executive action would cause some loss during the 2014 midterm elections,  they are not supported by most Americans.

2014 Midterm Elections

The single greatest step that can be taken to avoid disaster is to get out and vote (if you still believe in the system) and choose a candidate that truly will represent the people and stand up for what we actually want. If not, that is your prerogative but my guess is that if the Democrats manage to get the outcome that they desire from the upcoming elections, they will feel emboldened to take wide and sweeping action on a number of issues. We all know the president has nothing to lose and a good outcome in the midterms for the Dems will likely make them feel like a Hillary Clinton 2016 victory is in the future. All of this could add up to the perfect storm against liberty and freedom.

If LibertyGate 2014 comes to fruition, it seems like some of the most likely proposed executive and legislative actions will impact us as preppers. Some of these issues will probably look familiar to you as they have already been pushed before and failed. The immediate things that come to mind include:

I am sure there are others that will be on the list but this is what comes to mind as I sit here typing. If this does happen, there is going to be a run on guns, magazines, ammunition, maybe body armor, and perhaps even internet goods. Just the threat of action is all that is needed. It might only take a Democrat sweep of the 2014 midterm elections and not even the threat of action! Nothing even has to actually pass legislation to wipe the store shelves clean.

It seems the prudent thing to do is look at what might be threatened in the future and take appropriate steps to obtain those goods now. If scary black guns are on your wish list, time may be running out. There is finally some availability of AR series rifles, 30 round AR magazines, and “high-capacity” pistol magazines. I would hate to see what would happen if there is the threat of gun control legislation or additional executive action again. Does everyone remember the $100 PMAG’s following the 2012 presidential election? I do!

My intent is not to be a fear monger. That is the last thing that I feel is helpful but, then again, a little bit of fear might be a good thing if it provides the motivation required to get you and your family prepared for tough times. Keep your eyes toward the future and take action today!

Survival Sunday On The Web

This week I made a big move in trying to improve the quality and overall user experience of The Prepared Ninja by migrating my subscriber list over to MailChimp. As a result of this move, I will be able to offer new subscribers the opportunity to download a free copy of the Special Operations Forces Medical Kits guide (a look at the med kits that America’s elite medics carry into combat). If you are already a subscriber, I migrated your email address over MailChimp (unless you were a WordPress subscriber, then you will have to subscribe in the new box in the right sidebar). Thank you for your continued interest in The Prepared Ninja!

Survival

The internet is loaded with great information about survival, preparedness, homesteading, security, self-reliance, and literally just about anything you could possibly think of. I feel that it is important to share anything that could be valuable to all of us. Here are a few things that I found this last week:

50 Last Minute Ways to Prepare for and Emergency – This is a great list of tasks that should be completed in the last few days, hours, and minutes leading up to a disaster. On a side note, if you are looking for more food storage information then you know what to do with, make sure you sign up for Jodi & Julie’s mailing list.

Four Greatest Kinetic Threats To Preppers – I recently hear about Forward Observer ( a magazine by veterans, patriots, and preppers) in a podcast interview. This article outlines the greatest physical threats to preppers. Look around the site because there is plenty of other useful information!

How to Safely Shelter In Place During a Pandemic – This is a great article from Gaye at Backdoor Survival about setting up your home to shelter in place during a pandemic. This is timely information based on the fact that Ebola seems to not be going away.

Where You Should Hide Your Food – Do you have a plan in place that allows you to hide your food from intruders, marauders, or even the government? Check out these great places to hide your food to keep it safe during a disaster or unrest.

Camp Fire vs. Survival Fire vs. Cooking Fire – Do you know which type of fire to build for each survival situation in which you might find yourself? This article sheds some light on the different types of fires you can build and what the best use of each type is.

Evaluate the Perimeter Of Your Property – I found myself thinking pretty hard about some of the questions posed in this article. How is the perimeter of your property protected? What would you do if you needed to better protect it? Read this article for some good questions that you should ask yourself.

This wraps up my best finds of survival related gems around the web last week. I hope everyone has a blessed week and continues to prepare for any difficult times ahead.

What did you find last week that everyone could benefit from?

If you appreciate the content here on The Prepared Ninja, a monetary donation of any amount is always appreciated but I also appreciate any show of support whether it is a social media share or a comment about an article. If you would like to make a monetary donation of your own, it can be made via PayPal here. Thank you for your support!

Will Your Fuel Stores Fail You?

It is impossible to survive a hardship for any significant amount of time without a plan. Improvisation can work, but not usually for longer periods of time. This demands a long term plan. While a solid plan is multi-faceted, two of the key components of a complete survival plan are energy and transportation. For mostly obvious reasons, one of the easiest ways to get energy during a disaster is from a generator and most of us rely on a vehicle as our primary means of transportation. While these two items serve two different purposes, they do share one common thing…their fuel source.

Fuel
Fuel Storage

THE PROBLEM

Unless you are using newer technology like a solar generator, you will need gasoline for both your car and your emergency generator. This poses some unique challenges for the prepper who is concerned about not only having enough fuel for the here and now but for long term survival as well. The primary challenges with fuel storage are where to put it and how much of it to store. This takes a safe storage area like a specialized underground tank and probably some math to calculate the fuel consumption of all necessary equipment multiplied by the amount of time that you would like to be able to run the selected equipment. But that is not what this is about. What if you have all the fuel in the world but it becomes worthless?

ETHANOL IS A KILLER

Why is alcohol bad for an engine? The ethanol (most modern gas has up to 10% alcohol content) in fuel attracts water which in turn causes the formation of rust and corrosion in your engine. This is especially true in vehicles and equipment like generators and mowers that have a tendency to sit for long periods of time. In addition to rust and corrosion, ethanol causes the rubber and composite seals and gaskets to break down and fail. Most newer vehicles have been built to better withstand the use of 10% ethanol fuel but that is only if the fuel is consistently replaced and not allowed to sit for any length of time. This is the exception though. Almost all power equipment is adversely impacted by ethanol containing fuels, especially those that have been stored. Just to add to the problem, the Environmental Protection Agency gave the ok a few years back to add up to 15% ethanol to fuel. It is not only effecting cars, trucks, and power equipment; outdoorsman have been warned that ethanol fuel may kill their boat motor too.

WHAT YOU SHOULD DO

The best solution for fuel storage is to avoid ethanol containing fuels all together. (By the way, you get better gas mileage with 100% gas because of the higher energy content that is watered down in 10% ethanol gas.) There are gas stations that still sell ethanol free fuels. You can find the closest ethanol free gas stations at pure-gas.org which seems to have a fairly accurate account of not only the street address, but the GPS coordinates of these stations. That is not always realistic though. Consider these options to deal with ethanol fuels:

  1. Use the fuel that you are storing and then replace it immediately. By doing this, your fuel stores will be rotated and not have the opportunity to go bad so easily.
  2. Add fuel stabilizer to fuel stores to remove water and prevent the fuel from going bad.
  3. There is also the option of installing a shut-off valve on the fuel line. An article from The Crux titled, ‘How To Protect Your Vehicle From Ethanol Gas‘ has some a great tip on using a shut off valve to save some engines.

Most motorcycles have a fuel tap that you can use to turn off the flow of fuel from the gas tank to the engine. When you’re done riding, turn the tap to “off” and let the engine idle until it burns up the remaining fuel in the carburetors. Then it will just stop running – and you can leave it that way for awhile without worrying about stagnant fuel in the carburetors decomposing the internals. You can do the same with a car – if you install an shut-off valve in the fuel line, ahead of the carburetor. With power equipment, your best bet is to drain their tanks and run the engine until it shuts down.

I am not an expert but I would speculate that you could install a fuel cut off valve on almost any piece of power equipment if it doesn’t have one already. Here is a YouTube video on how to do just that:

ALTERNATIVES

If you would like to avoid the difficulties of fuel storage all together, make a long term survival plan that does not require fuel at all. Seems simple right? The reality is that this can be a challenge, but it is not impossible. Solar systems, even on a small scale, can be a great way to charge the batteries needed to provide the necessary energy to survive. Here is a great article from fellow blogger Graywolf on how to build a simple, portable solar power system. A system like this could be used to charge a variety of batteries from AAA all the way up to high performing deep cycle, marine grade.

Fuel free methods of transportation are limited but in the event that there were some sort of long term survival scenario, a bicycle can be invaluable. Not only have bicycles been the transportation solution of choice during disasters in the past, they are often used in third world countries and high population density areas as the best non-vehicle option for getting around. In addition to a bike, a bike trailer could be incredibly useful if things were to go bad.

While there are problems with todays fuel, there is no avoiding it for most of us. We have become a society that is dependent upon using gas for almost everything. If you can’t avoid it, make a plan to properly store fuel and don’t forget to have a secondary plan in the event that you run out.