Sep 20

Herbal Medicine, First Aid to Save Your Life!

Sam Coffman herbal medicineHerbal medicine is a must know in first aid in saving a life. There have been some major natural disasters this year so far, from the California fires to the very recent (and current) flooding in Colorado. I am originally from Colorado and over two decades ago I lived in two of the canyons that flooded and were evacuated this past week. Many of the mountain towns are stranded right now with Colorado Flooding herbal medicineno supplies coming in and no vehicle routes out. People are in self-sustainability mode that live in those towns. The good news is that most folks living in the mountain towns along the front range (at least when I used to live in those areas myself) are usually pretty well prepared. How would you fare if it were you (and maybe it is you) – especially if you or someone close to you became injured, which is a common occurrence in a major disaster? FOLLOW THE LINK TO LISTEN TO THIS SHOW AND READ MORE!

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Feb 07

Mindset thinking

Shy-ism: “Guns have a bad enough reputation. If I want to kill you I’ll use a bicycle spoke.”
That was true last year, it’s true today. In the real world, there will always be guns in the hands of bad people. Any who think different are living in Utopia and have no business walking the streets.
But just because there will always be guns does not mean we will always be able to use them, or want to.
Backing up a bit…
As I go about the chores in town, I watch people. Always have, always will. Just my nature- I can usually tell what a person will do just by watching them walk. I watch hands all the time ‘cuz hands kill. Some say ‘if looks could kill’, but they don’t, it’s the hands- but I watch eyes, too, cuz they say sooo much. One thing I see a lot of now in everyone’s eyes is distrust.
A lot of distrust. Standing in line at the checkout counter I see it in the eyes of the black clerk ringing up my sale. I see it in the eyes of those around me. I see tremendous distrust, bordering on fear, in the eyes of the blacks I encounter on the streets. In the eyes of Muslim friends, I see wonder and distrust. Even as well as some of these people know me, have conferred about our differing religious philosophies, have drunk coffee hours on end discussing them… now there is that little nagging distrust of me.
And I’m sure they see the same in me.
And it bothers me. But today it’s a fact of life.
No longer can we discuss our differences with candor and security. Ft Hood ended that with sharp clarity. The Muslims I know are not wild, “kill the Infidel” types, but they’ve been branded by their homeland, and American, clerics and the radicals performing Jihad in America. The pseudo-Christian in the White House has performed admirably in creating this air of distrust with his laying aside our laws and initiating his own brand of law, not justice or reason.
No longer do I trust them as I used to- and perhaps with reason, perhaps not. We have that lack of trust and fellowship between us now and it’s going to stay. At times I feel it’s being encouraged by both-sides-of-the-fence people.
So I watch people’s eyes and hands. And I watch their feet. Bill Wallace can kick at sixty miles an hour. One-tenth of a second from the ground to the jaw of a six-foot tall man. Others can kick nearly as well. I could, so I know others can. I watch feet.
Back to the present…
Guns aren’t necessary to kill someone, they just make it easier and less personal.
Many dead husbands can attest to their (still) living wife’s ability with a butcher knife. I’d rather face a drunk with a gun than an enraged woman with a knife. Any day.
Knives are becoming the weapon of choice for personal carry and defense to back up the gun on the belt. Often it’s the knife that is the first line of defense in a close-up and personal encounter.
Carry a knife in your pocket. Better still, carry a clip-on skeleton blade and learn to draw and open it quickly with minimal motion of your hand. Spend hours learning it. Days. Spend as much time learning it as you do drawing your gun. And while you’re learning to draw and open, think about how you’re going to slice and dice a meatloaf sandwich out of the person in front of you. That punk attacking you is not a human being, they are a savage animal and you must be a more savage animal. Saving your life isn’t a time for niceties and please and thank you. Get used to it- Ladies, too. Just because the punk on TV is a male gender type does not mean the girls aren’t going to be as cruel, or worse.
It wasn’t just boys chasing a kid across an alley with a two-by-four. They were cheered on and accompanied by girls. Laughing, don’t-give-a-shit-girls who’d have no qualms about slicing you for lunchmeat. Girls who laughed about what they were seeing and doing and cell-phoning to their friends.
What about when you get knocked on your ass amid a pile of rubbish? How quickly can you visualize a weapon in that pile of refuse? That stick? That discarded belt (or the one on your waist)? That old wornout toothbrush? We got a taste of improvised weapons most recently by Jason Bourne when he used a Bic pen to war against a knife. How about that purse or raincoat or shirt? What about that piece of rope? Even the bag of garbage? The book or magazine? When you hold your car keys, do you visualize a weapon or just a set of keys?
We have to begin thinking along those lines without reservation or fear of being made to look foolish. Anything you can pick up can be made a weapon that will kill. Maybe not as rapidly or at such great distance as a gun, but just as surely.
Just what is your life worth to you? Or your wife’s? Or your child’s? Or that old man being attacked by the punks running the neighborhood?
Why are those punks running your neighborhood?
Listening to newscasts… watching them on the tube… listening to conversations that I’m not privy to… in conversations I am part of… reading… everywhere. Absolutely everywhere is the racism gambit. Everywhere. No escape from the reality of it. Whether we want to or not, whether we like it or not, we are involved in a race war. Christian… Muslim… Pantheist… Gaia-ist… atheist… whether we want to or not, whether we like it or not, we are involved in an ideology war.
Some of those have announced intent to kill others and they mean it. It is their sole purpose for living.
How unprepared are you going to be when they come for you?
How prepared are you for living?
Are you going to fold and wait for God to send the cops? the military? hope that God Himself walks through the door to bless your antagonist and you?
I believe God helps those that help others.
The world has turned it to God helps those who help themselves.
Perhaps both aspects are right. I know He helps those who help others. And I know He has told us to help ourselves.
Be prepared. Be afraid, maybe very afraid. But don’t be so fearful you can’t defend yourself or others. Have your mind set on the battle coming to us all at a time we know not.
And don’t worry about those who are neither willing nor ready to help themselves by preparing. Get yourself prepared. Maybe you can help them and get a blessing yourself along the way.
God bless.

May 24


Now the first thing to remember is that there are no rules or time outs in a gun fight you do what you have to too win.

A few years back when a family friend and DHS agent told me a story about a simple arrest he was about to make. It went bad fast and a gun battle ensued, but with his training and shooting ability he came out on top. So after he was finished with his story we began to talk about my shooting ability I told him I first taught myself to shoot and then the US Military took over and I thought they did a good job at teaching me to shoot at stationary targets but in real life the targets usually aren’t standing still this creates a problem. Most people are or can be pretty accurate at stationary targets but put movement in and it’s a whole new ball game.

What I did was tried  to come up with ideas on shooting moving target so I went to the local range and asked around and found out there is a shooting club called the IDPA which stands for international defensive pistol association. I went to a match as an observer and talked with the range officer he told me the next time I come to watch I better bring a pistol and give it a try, so I did and boy did I find out that moving targets are a whole new deal.

This is the challenge I’m making to all the wolf pack start practicing shooting moving targets it does no good to buy guns and ammo and then shoot stationary targets. Try moving targets or try moving yourself and shooting on the move. For example tonight at the IDPA match we put out 3 targets moved back 10 yards and fired 2 rounds per target, Then I reloaded and shot 2 more rounds at each target as I advanced toward them never stopping until I fired my 6th round, Then I reloaded again from the 5 yard mark and fired 2 more round into each target while retreating or moving backwards. This is a very simple drill no special equipment is needed.  You will be surprised how poor you do at first, I was but I have greatly improved in the past few years with practice, practice, and more practice until its second nature.

I suggest getting involved in a shooting club like IDPA,SASS or IPSIC or start your own within your network or group of friends it doesn’t have to be a fancy set up as long as it works for you.

There are many nice moving targets on the market but they can be expensive so start small make your own I did. There are web sites or utube videos with instructions just type in moving targets.  It can be as simple as airing up some balloon’s put a string on them and attach to a post and let them flutter in the breeze after you master that then add some different colors and only shoot certain colors without hitting the others. There are many ways to practice use your imagination to come up with different ideas if anyone has a good and easy idea share it with us.

Remember not being aware of your surroundings can get you killed.    G. tupa   5/23/12

Apr 13

It’s Time to Start Foraging

The wild things are just starting to come out in Central Minnesota and it is time to start looking for them. It is the start of foraging time!!!

If you have never eaten weeds and wild things growing around you, now is the time to start. What better way to be prepared for any disaster than to know how to gather your own food.
There is another great thing about wild food than just feeding yourself. The plants growing around you, that most of us pull out or spray or just pass by everyday, are loaded with vitamins and minerals, so they are perfect for a survival situation. They will keep your body going strong.

For instance, dandelions are a rich source of vitamins A, B complex, C, and D, as well as minerals such as iron, potassium, and zinc. The leaves, blossoms, and roots can be used. The roots, when roasted, make a great coffee substitute. The leaves can be added into salads, teas, or sandwiches. The blossoms can make wine, blossom fritters, or jelly. There are also many herbal benefits of the lowly dandelion, too. I will be writing in a future blog about herbals.

There are many other wild edibles, such as, stinging nettle, purslane, chicory, wild onions and garlic, wild ginger, wild parsnip, chickweed, lamb’s-quarters, cattails, and I could go on and on. Oh, and don’t forget the mushrooms.
I will go into detail about different plants in the future but here are some simple rules of foraging.

1. Know what you are picking. Get a couple of good field guides and a knowledgable person to show you what’s what. You don’t want to forage something poisonous.
2. Do not forage along road sides where toxins will be built up on the plants or lawns, gardens, parks that have been sprayed with chemicals.
3. Wear appropriate clothing and watch out for wood ticks. Wear gloves when handling stinging nettle.
4. Have permission to be where you are at if it is not your property. ( This, of course, depends on whether you are really in a survival situation).

Jun 08

Keeping deer from eating your garden

Keeping deer from eating your garden
 by Hunter

Over the years I have had to deal with deer eatting my gardens and have come up with some ways of at least making it not worth their while. A few of the things that I have used are as follows.

1) Eggs and dish soap. I put three or four eggs in a blender with some dish soap once mixed I add to a watering can with the rest filled with water. Then I cover the pole beans that are growing on my fencing. If I keep up with this every week or more if heavy rains and watering I find that the deer will leave them alone. I have also used this methode in open gardens and have had simular resaults. works well on bunnies and bugs to.

2) mouse traps and peanut butter. Take a dozen or so mouse traps and drill holes to run a wire through and hand them about two feet off the ground. deer love peanut butter but are not to fond of the mouse traps hitting their nose. The same idea can be used with an electric fence by smearing the peanut butter on the wire for the deer to lick off.

3) fencing, I have used the high 6ft fence with good resaults

4) deer follow trails at least to get into your garden area, if you remove as many theings that the deer nibble on around the edges and use tactics around the boarder of your land in will help reduce the number of deer that cross your land. Trim lower limbs that deer eat on and find cover in. If you have dogs use there droppings up and down the trails the deer have been using to get onto your land. supply the deer with something they like that draws them away from your garden area. Create obsticals.

5) Motion activated lights and radio. It is nice to have the lights turn on and a radio play when you are enjoying the garden in the evening hours but with it on a motion activated system the deer will be surprised. To set this up get a two light motion activated light unit and one screw in outlet to plug in a radio ot tape player.

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Mar 07

Minnesota Preppers Roll Call – All Preppers Please Check In

The American Preppers Network is conducting a network-wide roll call.  Whether you are a member or not please check in and let us know what you are doing to prepare.

This is a good opportunity to network with other preppers near you.

Minnesota Preppers, to respond to the roll call please follow this link:

  • Reply to the Roll Call and let us know what you have been doing to prepare.

If you are not yet a member of the forum you can register here for free:

Feb 08

Flood Preps Part 2

“How high’s the water, Momma?”
“She said it’s four feet high an’ rising’!”

Hopefully, not in your basement or living room or attic.
But it does happen to many people every year and I always have to wonder why. Like, why would a farmer build his house on the most fertile soil he has? Never did understand that. Or why locals who know it’s gonna get wet insist on building as close to the river or lake as they possibly can. But they do it, and every year pay the price. In actuality, we all pay the price in higher insurance rates and disaster repairs, so no one really wins when a flood hits. Not even the fish. But that’s not what we’re discussing, is it?
We want to be safe when the disaster hits- not just flooding, but it’s that time of year so we prepare for it best we can.
First, about our homes and what’s in them. In basements that get only minimal flooding, let’s get everything off the floor. Put blocks or some form of feet under everything. If it’s paper stuff inside a dresser, how about getting small plastic tubs to keep the paperwork in? Family pictures are always heirlooms, as are slides and film- don’t leave them stacked in drawers or cabinets that aren’t waterproof. (We won’t discuss how I know this.)
How about other important papers- birth certificates, marriage licenses (no, just cuz you lose it in a flood doesn’t mean you’re no longer married, so don’t go there!), baptismal certifications- anything that’s paper and subject to moisture should be packed away long before a flood decides to turn them to basic paper mush. That house deed you have tucked in back of the drawer won’t look all that impressive if it’s glued to ten other pieces of meaningless paper. Get it into something dry.
While we’re taking care of all the important papers, how about photocopying them now, or taking digital pictures of them? Put the digital files onto your ‘puter, make a disk and flash drive copy of them and store those someplace cool, dry and not susceptible to moisture. While we have the camera out, take pictures of your valuables as well: jewelry, guns, kitchen appliances (insurance will want the info, too- so have copies of receipts for everything), and take lots of pictures of Grandma’s china collection. And that 1738 Stradivarius. How about the Original Fender Electric guitar you inherited? (Getting the idea?) If you’ll ever want to claim some kind of remuneration for loss, you’ll need all the proof you can find beyond “the neighbors know”. Get it now if you haven’t already.
For some reason, people seldom think of their basement getting wet or holding water. It has a drain, right? How come the water sits in it? Well… that little hole in the floor… How about finding- now, while the cost is probably the lowest of the year- some pumps and garden hose with which you can divert the incoming flow to the outdoors? Submersible pumps are not terribly expensive for what they do and what they can save you. Consider, even if it’s only your basement that gets flooded, what happens to the furnace when the night temp drops to 20 degrees and you’re trying to sleep? Keep that furnace dry and it’ll do its job. A sump pump or two can quite possibly keep the heat on. Too, how does the water enter your basement? Do the windows leak seriously big time? Do the wells need drain tile to below frost line? Are the tile clogged with last fall’s leaves? Is it leaching through the walls? Why? Would a coat of tar and plastic help? (Summer time job, and a big one, really.) Or does the water rise through the septic drain? Is there some way to block that floor opening if necessary? (Be sure to have sump pumps handy.)
If your basement is prone to serious flooding, get everything you want to keep in plastic tubs. Best bet: don’t store damage-able items in the basement.
If your home is low to the ground and water can enter the living floors… how can you prevent it? Can you start packing the sandbags now? Will sandbags work? How about retaining walls? Can you build one (another summer project, and spendy.) Now is the time to get the supplies you’ll need, and maybe even have the available help of friends and neighbors. Just think of how much fun it’ll be to take the teasing now so you can relax later? (And everyone comes begging you to help them now because…)

About your POV/vehicle.
Is it ‘flood ready’? How’re the tires? Gas tank full, or no less than half full- enough to get you out of town to a safe area? Is the oil level up to snuff? Do you have a couple of maps in the cubby with several routes color pencil marked routes and alternate routes to safety? Is there a GO bag in the trunk with three days’ food and water for each family member? Sleeping bags? A tent? Some form of self defense tools? (Of course, you have your carry piece, but what about the other family/group members? What? Guns for flooding? Yes, of course: we never know what or who we may run into during any kind of calamity.) Is there some form of radio communication in the trunk- with adequate batteries and spares? Some may even want a battery operated tv for news and keeping the kids entertained. Have batteries for it as well. (Perhaps a small Honda or Coleman gas operated generator would fit above the spare tire. OK: Thinking outside the box.) Whatever your plans for evacuation, be sure it’s ready to go in minutes. No one wants to forget something because they were in too big a frenzy to think clearly or because the kids were screaming and crying and wanting Fido to sit on their lap.
Speaking of Fido and Fluffy- got some grub in the trunk for them, too? And add more water for them: a dog and cat will drink as much water as you will, sometimes more. Don’t neglect them. What other kind of animals do you have to prepare for? Cows? Goats? Sheep? Chickens? Rabbits? (We’re preppers, remember?) Spend some time thinking of their safety, too. You won’t want to return home to find your cattle eighty miles down the road in Farmer Bill’s freezer. (OK, maybe his name is Herman…) Or dead in their pen.
A few links that may benefit us all:
Get your prep on, Folks. Be alert, be safe.
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Feb 08

at 24 below…

…Probably the last thing on your mind is water floating your bed- with you in it- from the bedroom to the dining room. But ya know, it’s something we should begin thinking about now.
OK, I gotta admit it was the first thought I had this morning, so you can color me ‘strange’.
But seriously, with all the snow we’ve had this year, and more on the way, it’s a sure bet the state powers are thinking about their beds floating away, and we should be as well. Up north we’ve surpassed our yearly ‘average’ in snow, and March is yet to arrive, and the time we get most of our year’s supply. Flooding is going to be a really hot issue in a couple of months, or less, and time for preparing is not when all this snow decides to wash downstream.
With that in mind, I’d like to gather a bit of information into one place so your fingers don’t have to do all the walking. Here goes…
Flood Preparation, Part One… Safety
There are many low-cost measures you can take to protect yourself, your home, and your property from losses.
A FLOOD can take several hours to days to develop.
A FLOOD WATCH means a flood is possible in your area.
A FLOOD WARNING means flooding is already occurring or will occur soon in your area.· Know your area’s flood risk – if unsure, call your local emergency management office. (Heck, you may alert them it’s time for them to prepare, too!)
· If it has been raining hard for several hours, or steadily for several days, and all this snow starts melting fast, be alert to the possibility of a flood.
· Listen to local radio or TV stations for flood information. (If you know someone who lives in a flood zone, call them and get some intelligent intelligence on the situation in their area- they’ll be light years ahead of FEMA or others.)
· Refer to your Family Disaster Plan and assemble a Disaster Supply Kit. (You DO have one, don’t you? I know we talked about this before… tsk tsk…)
· Identify where you could go if told to evacuate. Choose several places: a friend’s home in another area, a motel or an emergency shelter. (How about your BOL? Make it a training scenario that’s real.)
When a FLOOD WATCH is issued:
.· Move your furniture and valuables to higher floors of your home. (Actually, the time to do this is long before any kind of ‘watch’ is issued: have it done now so you can relax instead of panic and forget something.)
· Fill your car gas tank, in case an evacuation notice is issued. And don’t forget, check the oil and tires.
When a FLOOD WARNING is issued:
· Listen to local radio and TV stations for information and advice. If told to evacuate, do so as soon as possible.
FLASH FLOOD waves move at incredible speeds, can roll boulders, tear out trees, destroy buildings and bridges, and scour out new channels- and while they’re at it, turn your car into a drifting pile of debris. Killing walls of water can reach heights of 10 to 20 feet. You won’t always have warning that these deadly, sudden floods are coming. Flash floods can take only a few minutes to a few hours to develop. When a flash flood WATCH is issued be alert to signs of flash flooding and be ready to evacuate on a moment’s notice.
When a flash flood WARNING is issued for your area or the moment you first realize that a flash flood is imminent, act quickly to save yourself. You may have only seconds.
Flash flood tips…
· Go to high ground immediately- Get out of areas subject to flooding. This includes dips, low spots, canyons, washes, etc.
· Avoid already flooded and high velocity flow areas. Do not attempt to cross a flowing stream on foot where water is above your knees. (Got a walking stick/staff with you? Honestly, though: unless you are absolutely positively certain you can cross even a shallow stream safely, don’t do it! Wearing a PFD may not be a bad idea, either.)
· Do not drive through flooded areas. Shallow, swiftly flowing water can wash a car from a roadway. Also, the roadbed may not be intact under the water.
· If the vehicle stalls, abandon it immediately and seek higher ground – rapidly rising water may engulf the vehicle and its occupants and sweep them away· Be especially cautious at night when it is harder to recognize flood dangers.
· Do not camp or park your vehicle along streams and washes, particularly during threatening conditions.
Next up: Flooding, Part Two.
Be safe, All. Don’t wanna lose you just yet, OK?

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Feb 06

The skinning and gutting of an animal

by founderant

The skinning and gutting of an animal is not one of the things most people like to do or even think about.

We have been so desensitized to what has to be done in order to eat meat, that some kids and adults will eat a hamburger and have no clue about the process and yes… mess, that comes with eating your favorite meal.

This page has some links to videos showing the process, so unless you are going to be a vegetarian, you might want to know how it is done. … -an-animal

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Jan 15

5 Simple Ways To Prepare For The Coming Food Crisis

Activist Post

Recently there has been an incredible flurry of news reporting about food shortages and the pending global food crisis. Everyone who looks at the indicators would agree that this crisis is only likely to worsen. It is estimated that the Australia floods alone could cause a 30% jump in food prices. Although the average shopper already can feel the food inflation, it is difficult to recognize the severity of the looming food shortages. After all, there are still 15 types of colorfully-boxed Cheerios packing the isles, which gives us the illusion of abundance.

The truth is that we are headed for large food production shortfalls, manipulated or not, while middle-class food demand grows massively in the developing world. For decades the world’s agriculture community produced more than enough food to feed the planet, yet some now believe we are reaching “Peak Food” production levels. In turn, other experts believe the “food bubble” is about to burst, and not even the biotech companies can save us.

However, there are still vast unused stretches of fertile land that can be used around the globe, and the U.S. ethanol mandates that reportedly consume at least 25% of the corn harvest could be reduced to ease the burden. Therefore, it seems that despite the extreme weather and dwindling harvests, food production still has room to increase, but not without foresight and planning.

Additionally, the current systems for growing food are fully dependent on oil to achieve high levels of production, while livestock production is running at full concentration-camp capacity; the end product must then travel thousands of miles to get to store shelves. Clearly we can see the fragile nature of this system, especially on human health and the environment. Consequently, solving the so-called “food crisis” is far more complex than simply fixing statistical supply and demand issues.

Indeed, these are turbulent times where humanity appears to be nearing Peak Everything. Ultimately, solutions to the food crisis will begin at the local level. There are cutting-edge farming techniques gaining popularity that produce a large variety of crops by mimicking nature, as well as innovative techniques for small-scale food production at home or in urban buildings. These hold promise for easing local hunger.

Personal ways to protect yourself from food shortages may seem obvious to some, but many feel the task can be insurmountable. To the contrary, here are 5 simple ways to protect yourself from the coming food crisis:

1. Create a Food Bank: Everyone should have a back-up to the everyday food pantry. In this environment, you should consider your personal food bank far more valuable than a dollar savings account. Start by picking up extra canned goods, dried foods, and other essentials for storage each time you go to the store. Also, hunt for coupons and shop for deals when they come up. Devise a plan for FIFO (first in, first out) rotation for your food bank. It is advisable to acquire food-grade bins to store your bulk dried foods, and be sure to label and date everything. Besides the obvious store-able foods like rice and beans, or canned goods, some other important items to hoard are salt, peanut butter, cooking oils, sugar, coffee, and powdered milk. If you don’t believe the food crisis will be too severe, then buy items that you would eat on a normal daily basis. But if you believe the crisis will be sustained for some time, purchasing a grain mill to refine bulk wheat or corn may prove to be the most economical way to stretch your food bank. Some emergency MREs are also something to consider because they have a long shelf life.

2. Produce Your Own Food: Having some capacity to produce your own food will simply become a necessity as the food system crumbles. If you don’t know much about gardening, then start small with a few garden boxes for tomatoes, herbs, or sprouting and keep expanding to the limits of your garden. And for goodness sakes, get some chickens. They are a supremely easy animal to maintain and come with endless benefits from providing eggs and meat, to eating bugs and producing rich manure. Five laying hens will ensure good cheap protein for the whole family. If you have limited growing space, there are brilliant aquaculture systems that can produce an abundance of fish and vegetables in a small area. Aquaponics is a contained organic hydroponic system where the fertilized waste water from the fish tank is pumped through the vegetable growing trays which absorb the nutrients before returning clean water to the fish tank. Set high goals for independent food production, but start with what’s manageable.

3. Learn Food Preservation: Food preservation comes in many forms such as canning, pickling, and dehydrating. In every case some tools and materials are required along with a good deal of knowledge. If you can afford a dehydrator, they all usually come with a preparation guide for most foods. You can also purchase a vacuum sealer if you have the means. A good vacuum sealer should come with thorough instructions and storage tips, and will add months if not years to many food items. If you’re a beginner at canning, start with tomatoes first. It’s easy and very valuable when all your tomatoes ripen at the same time and you want fresh pasta sauce in the winter. A bigger ticket item that is nice to have for food preservation is a DC solar powered chest freezer. It is the ultimate treasure chest.

4. Store Seeds: The government and the elite have seed banks and so should you. Seeds have been a viable currency in many civilizations past and present. They represent food when scarcity hits. Before the rise of commercial seed giants like Monsanto, local gardeners were adept at selecting seeds from the healthiest plants, saving them, and introducing them to the harvest for the following year, thus strengthening the species. Through local adaptation to pests, genetic diversity was further ensured; it was long-term thinking at its finest. That is why it is important to find heirloom seed banks and learn to save seeds from each harvest.

5. Join or Start a Local Co-Op: Joining local cooperatives is very important, especially when food shortages occur. You may not be able to provide for yourself completely, especially in terms of variety, so having a community mechanism to spread the burden and share the spoils will be critical. If you don’t know if you have a local food cooperative in your area you can search the directory at You may also be able to get information from your local farmers market. If your area doesn’t have a co-op, then start one. These co-ops don’t have to be big or elaborate. In fact, it may be more optimal to organize it with friends, neighbors, or co-workers. Whether you join or start a cooperative, work to expand the participants and products.

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