Friday, August 31, 2012

Forth Half - Finances

This is the forth half of the post on finances. You will find links to other bloggers and websites about the subject for this week.


Total Survivalist Libertarian Rantfest - Label: Finances

Surviving In Argentina - Label: Finances

Stealth Survival - Label: Financial

Today's Survival Show - Catagories: Finances


Suze Orman

Dave Ramsey

Manisha Thakor - Manisha’s Money Musings

The Motley Fool

Google - Finance

AOL - Money and Finance

Yahoo! - Finance

MSN - Money - Financial Planning

Third Half - Finances

To the third half of the post about finances.

Dave Ramsey
Is the host "of a nationally syndicated radio program discussing personal finance topics. Strongly emphasizes reducing, avoiding, and eliminating debt."

Mr. Ramsey has some information on his website that will assist you in your financial preparations.


Dave Ramsey - Home

Dave Ramsey - Tools & Resources

Dave Ramsey - The Seven Baby Steps

Consumer Reports
Consumer Reports has some advice and a web page on financial survival. Who would have thought that Consumer Reports was a survivalist magazine.


Consumer Reports - Rebuild Your Finances, ...

College Students
Folks, especially parents, we need to make sure that our children and grand-children don't make the same mistakes, financially, that we did.

Studenomics has an article called "The Ultimate Financial Survival Guide For New College Students." The article has some good advice for all college students, young and old.


Studenomics - The Ultimate Financial ...

The Simple Dollar, Again
Trent Hamm has a blog called "The Simple Dollar." I read him about three times a week. He has practical financial advice for you and me.

Check his archives for subjects that you might be interested in, additionally, he has a free e-book called "Everything You Ever Really Needed to Know About Personal Finance on One Page."

Mr. Hamm also has a series called "Trent's 14 Money Rules."


The Simple Dollar - Everything You ...

The Simpile Dollar - Trent's 14 Money Rules

Second Half - Finances

This is the second half of the blog about finances. You will find videos/podcasts, instructions, and other information about the subject for this week.


Lamont Stewart - How to Organize Personal Finances: How to Organize Insurance Expenses

Note: This is the first video. Watch the other videos in this series

North Point Ministries - Managing Personal Finances (LO$T-Part 1)

Note: From a christian perspective

Today's Survival Show - Episode 30: Live like the Wealthy, and Coping with a Job Loss


Other Information:

Buying Gold and Silver
As you prepare, some people will tell you to buy gold and silver. I disagree, for the family just beginning to prepare. I say this for many different reasons.

One, you can't eat silver and gold.

Silver and gold will offer no nourishment for your family's hunger, only food will do that.

Two, you can't defend yourself with silver and gold.

Silver and gold will offer no protection against the rapist, looters, and robbers, only guns and ammo will do that.

Three, you can't drink silver and gold.

Silver and gold will offer no quenching of your thirst, only water that you have stored or treated will do that.

Lastly, why should I, or any other person, sell you food, water, guns, or the other necessities of life if all I have to do is wait for you to die and then take your silver and gold.

With all that said, a family that has enough food, guns/ammo, medical supplies, power generation equipment, ... and is preparing for a financical emergency might want to buy some silver and gold.

Over at Total Survivalist Libertarian Rantfest, the guys and gals have some excellent advice/thoughts on silver and gold.

September 14th, 2008 - 10 Commandments for Buying Gold and Silver

September 25th, 2008 - How Much Silver and Gold will Really Make a Difference

September 22nd, 2008 - Coin Shop Versus Online Dealers

September 16th, 2008 - Purchasing Precious Metals at a Coin Show

Week Eleven - Finances


Put a small cup or can next to the place where you undress, everyday. When you empty your pockets/purse. Place all of your loose change in that can; never take any of the coins out of the can.

At the end of the month, convert the coins into bills. Place these bills in an envelope for an emergency fund.

Blog Post:

Money, it makes the world go around. But what is it?

Federal Reserve Notes (FRN), Euros, blocks of salt, beads, shells, donkeys, and many other things have been used for money. But what is it?

If I have a chicken and you have a pair of shoes, and you want my chicken, and I want your shoes. We have a trade. Are chickens and shoes money?

What happens if I don't want your shoes you made? How will you get food for your family if all you have is shoes?

With money, of course!

But what is money?

OK. I will quit playing games.

Money is a recognized medium of exchange.

Your boss gives you Federal Reserve Notes for your work. You give me FRNs for my chicken. I give those same Federal Reserve Notes for a pressure cooker/canner at the discount store, and ex cetera.

So what does this matter to you?

Because during a disaster there is the possibility that the money that we have used all of our lives will be useless. Yep, I said it.

The money in your pocket, savings account, retirement fund, credit cards, and all of the other stashes of cash you own could be worthless. This includes the silver and gold that others advise you to buy.

OK, I am going to stop for now. But before I come back, I want you to read Commanding Heights: German Hyperinflation 1923 on PBS.

OK, remember opinions. Yeah, opinions that everybody has on what to do with your money. In finance, opinions are followed by this warning

"Past Performance Does Not Guarantee Future Success"

What follows are my opinions. If you follow them, we may both die poor and destitute.

First, stock enough food for you and your family to eat during the longest emergency you have planned for.

Second, have an emergency fund. Yes; before getting out of debt, investing, and all the other financial stuff; put aside some of your money for emergencies.

Some people suggest having two to six months of funds to cover your families basic needs. Basic needs such as mortgage/rent payments, insurance, and fuel for heating and getting to work. Not eating out, parties, and other nonsense.

For some families that will be a lot of money. If you can't afford this, save your change. Use this change as your emergency fund. No matter how well-off you are or how poor you are, you need to have money for emergencies.

Next, live below your means. If you make $25,000 a year, live like you make $20,000. If you make $50,000, live like you make $35,000. If you make $100,000 a year, live like you make $50,000. You get the point.

Next, you need to invest for the future, and the way to do that is to invest in your company's 401K plan. Make sure you check the fees each of the funds charge. Some 401K plans have options that will cost you money, watch your fees. These fees take money that you have earned from you.

As you invest in your company's 401K plan , you than need to make sure you are diversified. Diversification is having investments in different "classes" of investments. These classes are stocks, bonds, cash, real estate, and many others I don't know about.

To diversify, some people will tell you, if you are between 25 and 50 years old, to have 70% in stocks and 30% in bonds. The 70% in stocks is split between 50% in US companies and 20% in foreign companies. The 30% in bonds is split between short and long-term bonds.

Even if your company allows you to invest in their stock, don't. Remember ENRON.

If your company doesn't have a 401K plan, put your investments in a Roth IRA. As with the 401k, make sure you are diversified.

All of the above is conventional wisdom, but what about someone preparing for an emergency, specifically a financial emergency.

I suggest the following preparations.

One. Have enough food on hand, in the house, to feed you, your family, and some friends for at least a year. If not more.

Two. Have an emergency fund of cash on-hand in the house. Not in the bank, under the mattress, just like the Depression.

Three. Have a few silver and gold coins on-hand. Yes, take physical possession of this gold and silver. Just in case we have hyperinflation like Zimbabwe.

Fourth. Get out of Debt and stay out of Debt. Yes, this includes your home.

Fifth. Invest in yourself and your spouse. Learn a trade, grow some of your own food, start your own company (even part-time), read and learn new skills

That's it for today, so I will ...

See you, Monday


Wikipedia - Money

Commanding Heights: German Hyperinflation 1923 on PBS

Calculating Mutual Fund Fees and Expenses

Beginners' Guide to Asset Allocation, Diversification, and Rebalancing

FINRA - Smart Investing

FINRA - Investor Information-Smart 401(K) Investing

Wikipedia - ENRON Scandal

Roth IRA-Overview

Motley Fool

Understanding and Controlling Your Finances

Wikipedia - Great Depression

Wikipedia - Hyperinflation - Silver Coin Melt Values

Backwoods Home Magazine - Get Out of Debt and Stay Out of Debt

Motley Fool - 60 Second Guide to Getting Out of Debt

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Small Building Construction, Part Twelve

Dear Preppers and Survivalists,

If you see this message, I am having picture taking issues. Plus, this is it for my small building construction project, at least the parts I'm willing to share.

So, on with a rant.

I was reading someone else the other day and she said something like 'If you need a detailed manual to survive, you have bigger issues."

I whole heartily agreed until I realized most folks had non-preppers as parents

Let me explain.

When I was two years old, my mother 'bugged-out' from our family's home because of the Cuban missile crisis. She dressed my sister and I in our nicest clothes; grabbed the bugout bags, she and my father had packed after he was notified about an emergency deployment to the Caribbean, and we flew north out of danger.

Most other families, in our neighborhood, stayed.

At six or seven, my sister and I found my mom and dad's stash of silver dollars. To get these silver dollars, my dad would go to the bank and ask for dollar coins as change for a five dollar bill.

When I was tenish, a hurricane was headed towards our home. My father went into our bathrooms and filled the bathtubs with water and added a little bleach (about a cup). My mother wanted to go to the store, but my dad stopped her. He told her we have about seven days worth of canned food in the house; (This was back when folks only got paid once a month) we don't need any more food.

On the way home, my father stopped at hardware store and bought charcoal, some lighter fluid, and filled the car with gas. He saw many of our neighbors trying to buy food from empty supermarkets. We watched the tv as the storm approached. When the storm finally reached us, we all hid in the small bathroom under the stairway. After the storm, and before the lights came back on, my father grilled on the back patio with his military flashlight for illumination after checking on the elderly neighbors, next door.

My mother? She was cooking everything else using her stainless steel pots and pans.

When I was thirteen, my father and grandfather taught my sister and I how to shoot a .22LR single shot rifle. My younger brother would learn this too when he turned thirteen.

I can remember my grandfather grumbling about we should have learned how to shoot when my sister had turned eight.

When I was fifteen my father started teaching me how to drive. He taught me how to replace a flat tire, steer out of a skid, drive real fast, and talk to the police if I was ever stopped.

At about seventeen, my father would send me to collect rent money from his apartment tenants. He taught me how to ask nicely for the rent and be respectful, but also how to watch my back.

After I joined the military, both my father and mother roles in my life changed. They became mentors to me. My mother taught me how to 'see' the invisible messages of corporations, and my father taught me how to trasistion to  the corprate culture.

I have to go but I want to leave you one last thought about my survivalist parents.

When I was fortyish both my mother and father taught me how to die, kicking, scratching, and struggling to survive one more day.


Where's the rant in all this?

No matter what others say, each of us are survivors, and we can learn how to survive the tough times ahead.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Forth Half - Transportation

This is the forth half of the post on transportation. You will find links to other bloggers and websites about the subject for this week.


Stealth Survival - Simple Survival Tips: Winter Driving Safety Tips

Stealth Survival - Fuel Storage and Safety: Fuel Types - Gasoline

Stealth Survival - Fuel Storage and Safety: Fuel Types - LPG


National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) - Safer

MedlinePlus - Motor Vehicle Safety

MedlinePlus - HealthDay: Health Tip: Prevent Air Bag Injuries in Children

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) - Injury Prevention & Control: Motor Vehicle Safety - Vehicle and Carseat Safety Information

Third Half - Transportation

This is the third half of the post on transportation.

"The Bike Man"
In our area, there is a gentleman that refurbishes bicycles for the local children. He takes used bikes as donations, and he also collects bikes during big trash pick up day.

He will give these bicycles to children that have gone through a short class, taught by himself, on bicycle safety and maintenance; additionally, he will sell his excess bikes to help fund his project.

He works out of his garage repairing the bicycles as needed. He also salvages parts from bikes that are unusable.

Why, am I telling you this?

Because, this would make a good side business, and this is a way of getting transportation for everyone in the family for free or little cost.


Observant Bystander - Big Trash Day

Spilled Ink - Big Trash Pick Up

Nicomachus - Local Bike Man

Getting to Work
A total collapse probably won't happen. Yep, I know it's sad but true; no mutant zombie biker gangs, weird looking Mad Max cars, or Car Wars action; just lots of folks needing to get to work, so they can earn the money to buy the stuff their families will need to survive.

James Dakin of Bison Survival Blog suggests using a bicycle to get to work. According to his blog, he rides to work on his bicycle everyday. That's a great idea "if" you live close to work.

Another way would be to "Share the Ride."

If you don't like that idea, how about buying a small scooter. The scooter/Moped have a very small engine. The engine, 49cc, is so small some states consider them a powered bicycle. (No motorcycle license required). They get from 50 to 100 miles per gallon and most scooters maintain, at least, 25 miles per hour.

Lastly, you can look at selling/trading in your old car (low gas mileage) for a higher gas mileage car. We did this when we were looking to replace our cars; however, our mechanic suggested staying away from the hybrids. His reasoning: The hybrids cost more and we wouldn't recoup that extra cost even if fuel went to $5.00 a gallon. Replacing a battery pack is $8,000. So, no hybrids for us.


Wikipedia - Mad Max

Wikipedia - Car Wars

Bison Survival Blog

Share the Ride Challange - Share the Ride Challange

GS Motor Works - 49cc Scooters

Auto Broker Magic - EPA Gas Mileage Best Cars Ratings - Our Ten Favorite Fuel-Efficient Cars

Hybrid Cars - Behind the Hidden Costs of Hybrid

Second Half - Transportation

This is the second half of the blog about transportation. You will find videos/podcasts, instructions, and other information about the subject for this week.


How to Make Your Own Sandals

Patagonia Shoes: Do-It-Yourself Footwear (Moccasins)

Backpack Fitting Video

Advance Hiking Tips: How to Pack the Right Equipment for Hiking

Hiking Survival Techniques: How to Make a Hiking Survival Kit

Learning to Drive: Basic Car Maintenance

Basic Auto Maintenance: Tools to Keep in Your Car

Convoy Getting Ambushed in Iraq

Ambush Part 1


How to "Put Wheels" on a 5-Gallon Bucket
I heard about this technique from a Latter-day Saint friend. She told me to buy old, used folding luggage carts at garage sales or swap meets. She warned me to make sure they are in good shape.

Open the folding luggage cart. Place the 5-gallon bucket on the cart. Take enough bungee cords to hold the bucket on, and wheel away.

Her and her family kept their emergency evacuations kits in 5-gallon buckets. They planned to attach the folding carts to their bicycles if they had to evacuate by bicycle.

No, she didn't tell me how they attached the carts to the bikes, but she did say that they had practised and it had worked.

Other Information:

Military Manuals
The US military has many manuals that are useful by people who are preparing for tough times. One of these manuals is FM 21-18 Foot Marches. But you have to be careful because these manuals are written to be used by soldiers. Soldiers will have supplies, equipment, and many other items you may not have.

So plan accordingly.

You will notice in the videos that the vehicles are spread out from each other. This interval (the distance from each vehicle) allows only one vehicle to be attacked, allowing other vehicles to escape or come to the attacked vehicle's aid.

You will also notice that there is communication between each vehicle and/or communication between the driver and the passengers in each vehicle. In inter-vehicle communication (communication between vehicles), each vehicle is responsible to communicate danger that they see. In each vehicle, the passengers assist the driver in avoiding dangers that the driver may not see. Some passenger might even join the fight to defend the convoy.


Read this while the article is still posted. These people lived an evacuation.

Security Driver

Security Driver - Tactical Convoy Operations

Security Driver - Tactical Convoy Handbook

US Army - Convoy Leader Training Handbook

Grambo - Convoy Operations

Week Ten - Transportation


Check everybody's shoes in your family. Are they comfortable? In good shape? Do you and your family have a second pair of sturdy walking shoes or boots? If not, buy everyone a pair of good, comfortable, sturdy shoes or boots.

Blog Post:

The easiest way for a human to move from one place or another is walking. All you need is a pair of shoes, and you really don't need that. A pair of sandals will do in the spring, summer, and fall; add a pair of socks and you might just have winter covered.

The problem with walking, besides seeming to take forever to get somewhere, is you can't carry a lot of stuff. You are limited to how much you can carry.

How many plastic shopping bags can you carry in your hands?

Not many if the bags are full, and the plastic bags are fragile. Plus, you can only use the plastic bags once or twice before they rip and become useless.

To increase the amount of stuff you can carry, you can purchase a backpack. In the U.S. Army, soldiers carry anywhere from 40 to 120 pounds of supplies and equipment in her/his rucksack (backpack). Remember, these folks are trained, conditioned, and practise walking carrying this large of a load. Plus, their equipment is designed to carry most of this stuff.

As a note, 80 to 120 pounds is an abnormal load for a soldier. These heavy loads are usually carried for a short time and distance, extreme situations, or are limited to the elite forces. I have heard of rucksack frames bending/breaking and rucksacks tearing from carrying such heavy loads.

Now backpacks range in price from $10 for a very inexpensive school book bag to $250 for an extremely lightweight, high-tech, specialty backpack.

The designs also vary. Some are a big sack with shoulder straps, while others have internal and external pockets. Frames may be internal and external, too.

Just like it sounds, an internal frame is encased in the material of the backpack, (you can feel it, but you can't see it) and an external frame you can see and can, usually, easily remove from the backpack.

A frame allows you to carry a heavier load. This may or may not be a good thing. Remember, the heavier the load; the more energy it takes to walk.

If you want to move a lot of stuff you could put wheels on it.

There are a few ways of doing this. One way is to buy an used/old suitcase carrier. The one with wheels, You put your stuff on it and wheel it behind you. Another way is to use a wheeled suitcase. This works especially if you already have this type of suitcase. Be careful though, the wheels have a habit of falling off at the worst time possible.

Another way of "putting wheels on it" is a handcart.

To really increase how far you can travel and your speed; you can use a bicycle. The simple one-speed bicycle will easily double your range and speed. The one-speeds are simple and robust machines.

As you add gears, 3-speed, 10-speed, or 20-speed, the bicycle becomes more complicated. Cables and shifters must be maintained. This complex system of changing gears also increases initial cost, cost for repair parts, and add the number of repair parts you will need to have on hand.

If you have the money or skill, you can add a trailer to the bicycle. Most people use a bike trailer to carry their child on a trip. These child carriers can be modified to carry supplies.

If you are willing to walk beside your bicycle, you can carry huge loads. During the 1960s, the Vietnamese used bicycles to carry goods to market.

Motorcycles, just like bicycles, have severe limitations. They are difficult/miserable to ride in the cold and rain, and have severe limits on the weight and number of people it can carry.

Probably the most popular way of moving your stuff is the automobile. This includes cars, trucks and vans in all their variations.

You probably have one. If you are a typical US family, you probably have one for every driver in the house. If you are like me, you are in your car one to two hours a day. A lot can happen in those one to two hours.

Such as 40,000 to 50,000 people dying every year in automobile accidents, in the United States. In fact, automobiles are the number one predator of humans, but they have their uses.

An automobile will move a lot of supplies. They can carry many more people than a bicycle or motorcycle, and the auto can move much faster then walking or riding a bicycle.

Now, you are going to have to go back to your threat analysis because you are going to have to decide what type of/if an automobile is useful for your continued survival.

For me, I commute 70 miles a day from a 250 home subdivision in a medium sized town close to shopping. Parking at work is in a semi-secure lot that I can see from my office window. Work is in an area with low crime, but is surrounded by low-income areas close to the interstate highway. I wanted to be prepared for having to stay over at work, winter driving, earthquakes, and civil unrest.

So, I bought an economy car that I can use to store an extensive survival kit for work. My kit has been personalized for my situation.

If I stayed over at work, I wanted modest and comfortable sleeping clothes, blankets, a pillow, and toiletries to clean up in the morning. Yes, I have to admit; I have bunny slippers in my survival kit, just for fun though.

For winter driving, I carry a spare coat, gloves/mittens, scarf, winter boots with extra wool socks, a little food and water, matches, votive candles, a 13 ounce metal coffee can, two ice scrapers, and ex cetera.

The only thing that I did differently for earthquake preparedness was to avoid parking in a spot that the surrounding buildings could collapse on to, and I bought a backpack.

The backpack was a medium priced model, on sale. I wanted one that would be comfortable enough and big enough for a 50 mile/2 day hike home. I keep it empty because I plan to load the pack depending on the climate/situation.

I always have jumper cables, coarse sand (not cat litter because it turns into mud), warning triangles, local and state maps, and an empty fuel can in my car with $20 in one dollar bills, in the car.

The empty fuel can is in the trunk with the jumper cables, warning triangles, and sand. The jumper cables and warning triangles are in a bag together because I don't want to dig for them, if I help/need help to jump a car. The coarse sand is in a one gallon plastic jug. I learned last year; I will need a lot more sand. The maps are in the passenger area of the car with the twenty dollars.

For civil unrest, I keep a .357 revolver in the car. I have it unloaded and one loaded speed loader with an extra 6 loose rounds. The revolver and rounds are concealed in different parts of the car. If I know about civil unrest before I leave work, the plan is to load the revolver before leaving work with the loose rounds and quickly drive home.

If I don't know about the riots before leaving, I will drive very quickly. I know the above plan sucks, but it is the plan for now.

Except for the winter driving, I am more likely to have an accident/breakdown on my drive. During my research for this blog post, I found out that I do a poor job of preventive maintenance on our vehicles.

I think this is a very important item, preventive maintenance. If we can prevent the problem from happening, we are better prepared. I also believe that defensive driving will increase my chance of survival, so make sure you read all "70 Rules to Live By" and I'll ...

See you, Monday!


Make Your Own Tire Sandals

Boy Scout of America Troop 123 - How to Choose a Backpack

Backpack Tips

Mormon Handcart Plans

Meridian Magazine- Pulling Handcarts in Virginia

Bicycle Universe- How to Buy a Used Bicycle

Worksman Cycles

The Name Says It All

Mother Earth News - "Dime on the Dollar" Bicycle Trailer

Community Bike Cart Design

Instructables - Bicycle Cargo Trailer 220 lbs capacity $30 for Parts

Vietnam bicycle photo - hard life

Vietnam bicycle photo - A very strong boy

Defensive Driving: 70 Rules to Live By

Wikipedia - Automobile Safety

Vehicle Survival Kit

Instructables - Emergency Car Survival Kit

M4040 - How to Build a Decent Car Survival Kit

Monthly Auto Maintenance Keeps Auto Repair Bills Down

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Small Building Construction, Part Eleven

Dear Preppers and Survivalists,

Sorry folks,

It has been hectic these last few days. I was told about an upcoming job opening, two weeks ago; I called the manager, that day, to express my interest; I had a job interview, last Friday; I was offered and accepted the job, on Monday. Terminated my old position, yesterday, and I'll start on Monday.

I'll make a little bit more money (25¢ an hour) but the 'new' place has some troubles.

Because of all this, and the hot weather, I haven't had time to work on, write an update, and download the pictures for the chicken coop project.

Oh, well.

You'll have to come back to see how the project is coming along.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Second Half - Clothing

This is the second half of the blog about clothing. You will find videos/podcasts, instructions, and other information about the subject for this week.


How to Hand Wash Clothes

How to Do Laundry : How to Wash Clothes Without a Washer

Hand Sewing Essentials - Intro 1 of 27


How to Blend In
International Business Machines (IBM) has/had a unique philosophy about uniforms for their service personal. They believed a tech should blend in with the office, so a technician would show up for a service call in coat and tie with a brief case.

The briefcase held all the tech's tools. The tech would remove his coat and work on the machine. Once the technician was finished working, the tech would put his coat back on and leave. Unless someone saw the tech working on a machine, they would think he was a mid-level worker for the office.

In Britain, the road workers, delivery drivers, police and many others wear bright neon green vests or jackets. These bright vest are everywhere. Many people don't notice them anymore.

How many delivery drivers or tradesman do you see every day? What did they look like?

What about all the white pick-up trucks and vans you see all day long?

How Not to Blend In
Sometimes you are going to want to stand out. You can do this several ways.

The first way is to move. The human eye reacts to movement. Even if a dark object is on a dark background. If the object moves, you will see it move.

Be bright. No, I don't mean smart; I mean like flashing light bright. Use shiny objects to flash light in the direction of your rescuers, airplanes flying over, or towards inhabited areas.

The military signal mirrors, with the grid, are great. If you don't have one that's ok, you can use any shiny surface like a polished metal candy container lid or plain mirror.

Another method is to be bigger than you really are. Wave a blanket, the bigger and brighter the better. Spread out pieces of wreckage if you have it. I keep a couple of orange space blankets handy just for this reason.

The last method is to contrast. If you are on green grass, you need to be wearing red, blue, orange, pink, and ex cetera. If you are on a pink/orange background you need to be wearing brown, black, blue, and ex ceretra.

Washing Clothing during an Emergency
I have heard of a few ways of washing your clothes during an emergency. One method is to buy a clean, brand-new toilet plunger and a new or used clean 5-gallon bucket with lid.

A hole is cut in the middle of the lid and the plunger's handle is placed through the hole.

The clothes, water, and detergent are placed in the bucket. The plunger is moved up and down.

Do this for a few minutes.

Take out the soapy clothes, ring out, dump the soapy water from the bucket on your garden. Put clothes and clear clean water in the bucket and move the plunger up and down to rinse.

Another method involves a rocking chair and a five-gallon bucket.

Basically, you mount a plastic bucket on the two rockers in the back of the rocking chair. Fill the bucket just like you did in the above method then sit and rock back and forth for a few minutes. Once you think the clothes are clean, remove them from the bucket, and do the same as the above method.

Other Information:

United States' Military Clothing Issue
According to one of my brothers, the United States' military issues 4 sets (shirt and pants) of camouflage uniforms. These uniforms are worn during combat, conducting maintenance on equipment, and many other activities. I even see soldiers wearing their camouflage uniform in the airport when I travel.

The US military also issues every solider two jackets, two pairs of boots, and about seven pairs of socks, underwear, and t-shirts. Plus, they receive an annual clothing allowance to replace damaged and worn unifrom items.

Most people know these facts.

What most people don't realize is that the soldier's shirt last longer then their pants.

I have noticed the same thing at my work. As the guys and gals go about their jobs, the legs of the pants get beat up. Walking through sticker bushes, kneeling down, even walking from place to place in high top boots takes it toll on pants, but shirts stay in good shape.

So what does this have to do with emergency preparedness?

If you are stocking clothing, you need to store more pants then shirts.

Military Surplus Clothing
Depending on your threat analysis, will depend on the color of the military surplus clothing you will buy. I normally avoid the camouflage military clothing. I stick with the green pants, shirts, coats, and other items. Green works in my area of the world. If you live in the desert or urban areas, you may want to focus on the browns.

Now the British Special Air Service, The SAS, have a compromise. They wear green pants and shirts, but wear a loose fitting camouflage pullover or jacket that is about mid-thigh in length.

Foreign Military Surplus Clothing
If you lift weights, the foreign military shirts and coats, except the British military, may be too small in the arms and shoulders. I have heard, the foreign militarise don't put a great emphasise on upper body physical strength like the US military.

Current US Military Clothing
I have heard that the ACUs are delicate. Plus, to me, they don't blend in anywhere.

Spare Parts and Maintenance Items
You will need spare shoe laces, polish for you leather boots and shoes. Thread, needles, scissors, buttons, zippers, snaps, velcro, and other items to repair your clothes. Don't forget the washing detergent to wash your clothes. You will also need to dry them. The low tech solution is to have a clothes line.


How to Hand Wash Clothes:

Electricity Free Clothes Washing

James Washer

Pedal-Powered Clothes Washer

Wash Day Blues

Tips on Laundering Flood-Soiled Fabrics

Week Nine - Clothing


Insure everyone has a coat, hat, and gloves warm enough for this winter.

Blog Post:

Clothing is very important. It protects us from the extremes of this planet and outerspace. Yes, outerspace.

Think about the effort that the various space programs take to protect an astronaut, cosmonaut, or taikonaut. Extreme cold, heat, and the almost absolute vacuum of space.

Lucky for you, you are only preparing for an emergency on this planet, but that is still a big challenge.

Depending on where you live will depend on the clothing you will need for your emergency preparations. The Pacific Northwest will require an entirely different set of clothing preparations then in the American Southwest. This also goes for the urban, suburban, or rural resident.

Let's look at some of the similarities for all of these locations.

A hat

Everybody needs a hat. I suggest a wide brim hat that has a brim about 3 inches wide all the way around the hat. The full brim will protect your ears, neck and face from the sun's harsh rays. The hat will also reduce the amount of body heat escaping from you in the cold.

If it is really cold, you will need a second hat.

A US military pile cap, a close fitting cap with flaps that cover the ears; a wool watch cap/beanie; or a towel wrapper around your head will help retain some of your body heat.

A scarf

Yes, a scarf even for the desert. In the winter/cold areas of the the world, you will want a wool scarf. Make sure, the scarf is long enough to wrap around your face to protect your face from the wind. If you/a family member is allergic to wool, acrylic scarves work pretty well. You also might want to check out merino wool items. I hear they don't get scratchy like regular wool.

Back to the scarf for the desert. This scarf should be long enough to warp around your head to protect your neck, face, and eyes from the intense sunlight found in the desert. The Bedouins call them kufiyya; theirs are made out of wool. I suggest a cotton one; additionally, a cotton scarf can hold an ice cube at the base of your neck to help keep you cool in the summer.

A shirt

You will want a long sleeve shirt. The long sleeves will protect you from various dangers such as sun, wind, and biting insects. Depending on the climate, you can layer the shirt with a t-shirt under the shirt and a sweater over the shirt.

Most people will tell you to avoid using cotton in your emergency preparedness preparations. I agree, for the most part. Cotton is a poor fabric for survival. Cotton will hold moisture, doesn't dry fast, and it doesn't retain your body heat as well as wool and the synthetic fabrics, like polypropylene, when wet. If you can avoid getting wet, say when you are indoors, cotton makes an inexpensive clothing fabric.

I own a few cotton sweaters that I wear during the winter to keep the chill off while in the house. I even wear a cotton sweater when I travel around town in the winter. But I keep a wool or performance fabric, such as thermax, shirt handy if I go out into the wild for more than a few minutes.

Long pants

You need long pants not shorts. Just like long sleeves, long pants protect you from the sun and flying stuff if you use a chainsaw or string trimmer.

Now don't get me wrong, shorts are cool, (Yes, the pun was intended.) but you are trying to prevent injuries during an emergency. Just like shirts, wool in the winter and cotton in the summer is OK, but avoid getting the cotton items wet.

Undies or no undies that is the question

From my understanding, undergarments where originally intended to reduce the need to wash your outer clothing. Our sweat and body oils would soil the underwear instead of the outer cloths. The outer clothes could be worn many times before needing to be cleaned. I do this when I am working outside in the summer. I will wear the same jeans and t-shirt for 3 to 5 days before washing them.


I wear wool socks with my boots all year long. I will add a polypro (polypropylene) or nylon sock liner in the winter to keep my feet warm.

During the summer, I wear sandals. You can also wear sandals in the cold, if you wear socks or other insulating material around your feet.


You will need gloves for every climate. Warm ones for winter/the cold, tough ones for when you work in the garden or heavy labor, and specialty gloves for those specialty tasks such as welding, painting, or operating on someone.


The last similarity is the need for sandals, shoes, and boots. I suggest getting the best footwear you can afford. If all transportation stops, similar to 9/11/01 in New York, you may have to walk home.

I get my emergency clothing from discount stores, charity stores, department stores, military surplus stores, and specialty stores.

I buy my cotton undergarments and cotton socks, colored t-shirts, and inexpensive boots at discount stores. At department stores, I get my jeans and collared shirts.

I visit charity stores every once in awhile. I buy my used clothes in the "earth tones," green, brown, and black.

Military surplus stores provide a lot of my emergency preparedness clothing. Most surplus foreign military clothing is wool or cotton. The United States military surplus has polypro long johns, gortex jackets, and other more modern fabrics. Former military clothing seems to be more rugged; plus it is in the earth tone colors.

At specialty stores, I buy my expensive boots/shoes, welding gloves, safety glasses, and other hard to find items.

Before I go on, I would like to write about the levels of clothing technology in the US military.

In the 1940s-1950s, the US military used wool and cotton in their field gear/clothing. An example is the arctic parka. It had a cotton shell, a wool liner, and an animal fur hood. This level of technology has its limitation, but all of the gear still works. Be careful, some of this equipment is becoming collectible, so prices are increasing.

In the 1960s - 1970s, the US military was changing to synthetic material for their liners for their clothing. The shells such as field jackets and field pants were still made out of cotton, but the liners would be nylon with a polyester core.

From the 1980s onward, the US military had embraced the synthetic fabrics. Rain jackets are now made out of gortex. Uniforms are a combination of nylon and cotton, and liners are polypropylene. You still see wool and cotton, but it is slowly disappearing.

So what do these last three paragraphs have to do with emergency preparedness? They have to deal with technology levels and how to stretch your limited dollars.

Yes, gortex is great, but you may not be able to afford it. So you buy nylon rain jackets. Can't afford polypro long johns, buy military surplus wool long johns. If you can't afford surplus wool long johns, save your money and buy them. The cotton long johns will not protect you from the cold if they get wet.

Need more rugged inexpensive coats with liners, buy surplus foreign military coats. Need more leather boots, buy used military boots.

So, how much clothing do you need? You will have to decide.

I have 7 uniforms for work, one clean uniform for each day of the week and a spare at work and home. When I say uniform, I mean an actual uniform. For some people, such as office workers, your uniform may be a tie, button down shirt, dress pants, and underwear.

I have 3 coats with liners for everyone in the family. A nice coat for everyday wear and two coats that are surplus foreign military. The two coats are split between the family cars. As we add cars, we will purchase more coats for emergency boxes stored in the truck of each car. (More about that in a few weeks).

I keep many, many pairs of socks on hand. There is nothing like having cold wet feet and changing into a clean pair of dry socks.

In footwear, we have three pairs of work shoes/boots, a few pairs of sandals, and surplus military boots in storage.

From looking at third-world countries and other disasters, I believe that clothing will be available, but comfortable and properly fitting footwear will be in short supply. Don't forget a spare pair of arch supports if you need arch support and shoe laces too.

This is a lot of clothing and footwear. To save money, we buy clothes when they are on sale. I also search the military surplus stores/sites for bargains on boots and surplus clothing. For gloves, hats, and scarfs, we buy at the end of the season when these items are deeply discounted.

I also stock spare clothing for expected guests. I mentioned this in a previous post. The ladies are asked to send gently used bras. The clothing goes in metal drums for secure storage. We had a mouse problem that is the reason for the metal drums.

In my research, I have found two differing opinions on storing bedding, blankets, and clothing. The United States military throws their clothing in a pile. They say this method prevents wear spots that would develop, if the clothing was folded.

Others say that folding allows more items to be placed in the same amount of space when compared to unfolded items. These folks also say the wear spots only develop, if the item is repeatedly folded. You decide, and ...

I'll see you next week!


NASA - Human Body in a Vacuum

Survival Clothing for Outdoor Emergencies:

Survival Topics - The Three Layer System

Jon's Exmoor Bushcraft Blog - Layering Clothing for Comfort and Survival, Part One

Jon's Exmoor Bushcraft Blog - Layering Clothing for Comfort and Survival, Part Two

Jon's Exmoor Bushcraft Blog - Layering Clothing for Comfort and Survival, Part Three

Jon's Exmoor Bushcraft Blog - Layering Clothing for Comfort and Survival, Part Four

Survival Clothing for Outdoor Emegencies

Stealth Survival - Boots, Bandanas, and Boxers

LL Bean - Paddling Tips-Dressing for the Outdoors

Ancestors of Science - Inupiat Clothing and Arctic Winter Survival

Wildwood Survival - Hats

Survival Hat with Flaps

OSHA Guide - Cold Stress

Discovery Online - The Skinny on Smelly Sports Clothing

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Unprecedented Thursday Blurb

Dear Preppers and Survivalists,

Roman Gold Coins Excavated in Pudukottai India

If you haven't seen the article "Aaaand it's Gone: ...," you need to read it. Today.

Make sure you heed the articles warning for all your investments.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Small Building Construction, Part Ten

Dear Preppers and Survivalists,

In the last installment of this small building construction project, I promised I'd tell you about the problems we had with installing the metal roofing.

Needless to say, just like dimensional lumber, every piece of metal roofing was true, square, and exactly the same size. Well, the roof wasn't.

Let me explain.

Notice the Roof Decking
especially the gaps
I had ignored some problems when I was installing the roof decking. First, the OSB (oriented strand board) wasn't going on easily. I had to cut some pieces that weren't square. Second, (I found this out later) the trusses need to be evenly apart, and the end trusses, just like the walls, need to be plumb. Mine weren't. Lastly, the purlins overhang, I thought, exactly 12 inches; they didn't.


When I put up my first sheet of metal roofing (The metal roofing is about 36 inches wide) and tried to square the metal to the roof, it overhung the roof decking at the top by about an inch and a half. Yes, only 1 1/2 inches.

Well, you can see that difference from the ground, so I had to take the sheet of metal off. mark the wood decking that needed to be cut off, remove the rake, cut the wood decking (and the purlins), reinstall the rake, and reinstall the metal roofing.

It was a pain in the *ss undoing all that work, but it went back together a whole lot easier. Another reason to use screws on small building projects ; - )

Needless to say, once the first sheet of metal roofing goes on; it's easy to install the other sheets of metal roofing. All you need to do is lay down the next sheet (per the manufacture's specifications), even it up, screw it down, then go to the next sheet. Easy.

Oh, did I tell you; the other side of the roof was uneven, too. So, I redid that side of the roof.

Then, I talked to the carpenters working on our barn about installing gutters because we want to add a rain barrel, later on. They said to make sure the metal roofing overhangs at least one inch. You guessed it. The metal roofing that I had installed was flush with the eaves.


I take off all the sheets of metal roofing, replace all the roofing felt/tar paper because it had a bunch of holes in it, and reinstalled the metal roofing with a one inch overhang. Next, I added the ridge vent at the very top (and slipped off the roof)

Of course, it rained a few days later. You guessed it, again. The inside of the building was dry!!!

Now, you and your family could stop here, all you would need to do is add a coat of paint, but I want a building that looks good.

So, we ordered all the other pieces of metal that go with this roof.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Forth Half - Health/Medical

This is the forth half of the post on healh/medical. You will find links to other bloggers and websites about the subject for this week.


Stealth Survival - Homemade First Aid Kit

Stealth Survival - First Aid Kit for Treatment of Burns

Stealth Survival - Pocket First Aid Kits

Stealth Survival - Home-made First Aid Kits, Additions

Surviving in Argentina - Mosquito Repellent as Part of Your Preps

Surviving in Argentina - Preparing for Flu and Other Diseases

Surviving in Argentina - Swine Flu

Of Two Minds - Overcoming Depression in a Depression

Many More Later.


United States of America -

Pandemic Influenza Preparation and Response: A Citizen’s Guide

Third Half - Health/Medical

This is the third half of the post on health/medical.

Many months ago, I read a disturbing post by Michael Panzner at Financial Armageddon.

In "More Than Just Numbers" Mr. Panzner provides an article by Nick Turse titled "Meltdown Madness: The Human Cost of the Economic Crisis." Please take time to read the article.

Terrible isn't it. People taking their lives, robbing banks, committing other crimes, or just acting crazy. Yeah, people like you and me.

Some of us, maybe most of us, would dismiss this behavior as no big deal. I think it is a big deal. We are under a lot of stress in these times. People losing their jobs, homes, and financial security.

In the Links: I have provided some links, of course, about mental health. I urge you to seek help if you are having difficulty.

If you can't afford a professional, you need to find an ear to bend. Someone you are comfortable talking to about your feelings. This person could be a friend, priest, or family member.

If someone seeks you out to talk about their problems, take time to listen. You don't need to help, just listen. My wife and I call this "venting."

Since we have been venting (no venting about each other, by the way) for a few years, I have learned to recognize when she does this. I would suggest that you explain to your friend or family member what you want to do. Tell them upfront that you are not seeking help, just someone to listen.

If you are seeking help for a problem, tell your friend upfront, so she/he knows that you are seeking assistants to solve this problem. This is important; you have to let people know that you are seeking help to get help.

Yes, network! People have the answers you are looking for.

Always ask if there are questions you should have asked. As government budgets get smaller, you will need to turn to family, friends, and neighbors for assistance.

Now, some of us are going to try to work this out on our own. For me, I remember the Serenity Prayer. When I am feeling tough, I recite the Commando Prayer.


Financial Armageddon - More Than Just Numbers

The National Institute of Mental Health

click on "Publications (also en Espanol)"

next to "Jump To" - Select a Topic -click on the arrowsscroll down to "Depression" or "Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder" (PTSD)

It will take you to some pages that have .pdf documents about these mental health illnesses

MedlinePlus: Mental Health

Suicide: Top Health Concern of Men

Women's Web - Suicide and Depression

The Serenity Prayer

Andre Zirnheld - The Paratrooper's Prayer/Commando Prayer

Second Half - Health/Medical

This is the second half of the blog post on health/medical. You will find videos/podcasts, instructions, and other information on the subject this week.


How To Wash Your Hands:

Treating Minor Injuries with Basic First Aid: First Aid Kits

Treating Minor Injuries with Basic First Aid: How to Clean a Wound

Treating Minor Injuries with Basic First Aid: Using Adhesive Wound Closures

Treating Minor Injuries with Basic First Aid: Applying a Sling

Treating Minor Injuries with Basic First Aid: Treating Abrasions at the Scene

Treating Minor Injuries with Basic First Aid: How to Treat a Strained Muscle

Treating Minor Injuries with Basic First Aid: How to Treat a Bee Sting

Treating Minor Injuries with Basic First Aid: How to Stop the Bleeding

Treating Minor Injuries with Basic First Aid: How to Treat Blisters

Basic First Aid: Tips for Calling 911

Basic First Aid: Controlling Bleeding

Basic First Aid: How to Create an Anatomical Splint

Basic First Aid: Treating Blistering Burns

Basic First Aid: Treating Chemical Burns and Victims of Electric Shock

Basic First Aid: How to Treat Burns

Basic First Aid: Checking the Pulse, Breathing & Airway

Basic First Aid: Using Rubber Gloves to Treat a Patient

First Aid for Splints & Bleeding Wounds : How to Use a Tourniquet

I am going to stop here. There are many, many more videos on first aid at YouTube. Make sure you practise your new skills.

The Humanure Hacienda - Humanure Compost Bins

Starting a New Humanure Compost Pile

Emptying Humanure Toilet Receptacles

Humanure Compost Bin - Active Side


Washing Your Hands:
Turn on the water. Warm water that is a comfortable temperature for you is the best.

Get the soap on your hands. Don't worry if the soap isn't antibacterial. Any soap works, even the cheap stuff.

Rub your hands together. Lathering up your hand (lots of soap bubbles) for about 30 seconds. Count from 1 to 30, sing Happy Birthday, twice, any way you want but rub your hands together for 30 seconds.

As you wash your hands, wash between your fingers and under your finger nails.

Rinse the soap off.

Dry your hands, and turn the water off with your towel.

The hardest part is to remember to turn the water off with the towel. The reason for turning the water off is because you just turned the water on with your dirty hands.

Obtaining the U.S. Army First Aid Manual
Go To

Click On ( Middle Left, First Yellow Rectangle)
Public Access to the Central Army Registry (CAR)

Cut and Paste "FM 4-25.11 First Aid" in to the search box

Click On "Search the CAR" (The small yellow rectangle)

It will take you to a list of publications.

You are looking for FM 4-25.11 First Aid (It should be the first one listed)

Click on "FM 4-25.11 First Aid" and it should take you to a page that on the very bottom says "Download PDF Files"

Click on "Download PDF Files"

The manual should start to download

You might want to download the two other manuals while you are there.

FM 21-10 Field Hygiene and Sanitation
FM 4-25.12 Unit Field Sanitation Team

Other Information:

Obtaining Prescription Medicine:
Prescription medication is controlled for several reasons. One reason, it can be used by druggies to get "high." Another reason for prescription medicine being controlled is because it can do great harm if used improperly. There are other reasons, but I'm not going to discuss them, here.

Now, one way to get prescription medication is to explain to your doctor why you want the extra medication for your current condition. You have a heart condition, and you think it would be a good idea to have a 90 day supply, just in case.

Another way would be for you to discuss with her that you are a survivalist, (Don't use the word survivalist; to many negative connotations. Try preparing for a long-term emergency, instead.) and you would like to have some antibiotics on-hand, just in case. You might even offer to have her store the antibiotics for you in her office.

Another method is to use drugs designed for animals. This way is starting to be/has been closed, so you may need to get a veterinarian to sign a prescription for you.

Another method is to buy them from oversea/out of country pharmacies. Be careful, there have been reports of scams. The buyer gets sent fake, ineffective, or even deadly fake drugs.

One report I saw, talked about a pharmacist receiving antifreeze as cough syrup. Another received a toxic chemical as an anti-malarial drug.

Don't, Do Not, Never take less then the medication that your doctor has prescribed. The antibiotics have been designed to be taken in the amount and the time indicated by your doctor. If you take less or stop before you are suppose to, you can cause the disease you are fighting to get stronger.

This has been happening with tuberculosis (TB) and other diseases.

What to do with your Poop:
During an emergency, you may lose the ability to flush your toilets.

There are several ways to deal with this problem. One way is to have extra water to place in the tank. Filling the tank will allow you to flush the toilet. You can even cause the toilet to flush by adding extra water to the toilet bowl; however, you may not be able to do either, if the sewer lines are broken.

If you are out in the woods, you can use a method used by many military forces. It is called a cathole. A cathole is a 1 foot deep and 1 foot wide hole dug in the ground. You squat over the hole and poop. Once you wipe your butt, the paper goes in the hole, and the hole is covered.

If you have a folding shovel, you can rest your butt on the blade of the partially folded shovel.

Another way is to buy a port-a-potty. These come in a variety of styles. One style is a seat with a plastic bag. Another style is a 5-gallon bucket with a snap-on toilet seat. Another style is the portable toilet.

The portable toilet is good for a few days maybe even a few weeks. You will need to store water (non-potable is ok), the fluid that the toilet uses, and toilet paper.

Don't forget water to wash your hands! You will need soap and water. The hand sanitizers are not as effective as soap and water.

If you don't have a lot of money, you can poop in a plastic shopping bag and pee in a large mouth bottle. The poop is covered with sawdust, shredded paper, or other absorbent material. The bag is loosely tied shut and placed in your outside trash can. The trash can lid is placed tightly on the can. The pee is poured on your garden.

If the emergency continues for a long time, you may need to build an outhouse. Basically, you build a small building over a deep hole.

If you don't like that idea, try this one.

There is a group of people that advocate using human poop as fertilizer. There is even a book written about it called The Humanure Handbook. It can be downloaded for free.

This idea could be adopted for use in a long-term emergency.

There are more methods, but I am stopping here. If you would like more ideas, do an internet search about poop!


Sanitation and Hygiene During an Emergency

Portable Camp Toilet:

Honey Bucket Style:

VISA 268 Portable Toilet:

Want a Great Garden? Pee On It!

Think Green-Urine for Fertilizer


Outhouse-Frequently Asked Questions

The Humanure Handbook

Week Eight - Health/Medical


Buy a first aid kit. If you already have some first aid supplies, put them together, inventory, and/or organize your first aid supplies in a centralized location.

I am not a doctor. Nor, do I play a doctor on tv. As with all of my blog posts, links, videos, instructions, and other information provided by me, you are responsible for any death, injury, harm, or saved lives that the use of this information provides.
Use at your own risk.

Blog Post:

In all the wars, humans have had, infection, disease, and accidents are the number one killers. So the best way to prevent a medical problem/emergency is through prevention.

Let us look at an extreme example.

If you hangout with drug using/dealing felons, you are more likely to be shot. If you live in a neighborhood with rival gangs that deal drugs, you are more likely to be shot.

So to prevent being shoot, hangout with law abiding citizens in a decent neighborhood.

OK, let's come back to reality, for most of us.

To prevent being sick from the cold; wash you hands. Avoid people who are sick, and the surfaces they have touched. Keep your fingers out of your nose, eyes and mouth.

To prevent catching the flu, wash your hands. Avoid people who are sick. Keep your fingers out of your mouth, nose, and eyes. Get a flu shot.

The washing of your hands is a common factor in preventing most diseases. Use the bathroom; wash your hands. Shake hands; wash your hands.

Another common factor is keeping your fingers out of your nose, mouth, and eyes. If you shake hands, and can't wash your hands, keep your fingers away from your face.

The last common factor, I will mention, is to avoid sick people and their things.

There is another way, of preventing diseases, it is to get vaccinations.

The US military has a long list of standard immunizations that all soldiers receive. If a group of soldiers are deploying overseas, they may receive other specific immunizations for the overseas area.

Another method of preventing diseases, is to control disease by controlling vectors. Vectors are the animals and insects that carry a disease.

One example, that most people have heard about, is the bubonic plague that wiped out 1/3 of Europe's population from about 1350 to 1400 A.D.

To recap the bubonic plague, fleas living on rats carried bubonic plague. The fleas bit the rats; the rats died of plague. The fleas, looking for a new host, jump on humans and bite the person. The person, most likely, dies of plague.

A more recent example is malaria. A mosquito carrying malaria bites a person; the person comes down with malaria. The person may or may not die. Either way, life will suck for anyone catching malaria.

Now, there are various ways of controlling vectors. One method is to prevent the vector from living.

You can do this by interrupting the vector's life cycle. For mosquito's, you make sure every container holding more than a teaspoon of water is empty of water. This works because the mosquito larva can only survive in water.

Another way to interrupt a vector's life cycle is to kill it. You set a trap. The trap kills the rat; keeping the rat population under control. This reduces the number of fleas.

You have to be careful using traps. The bigger traps can break your fingers, if they are caught in the trap. Traps with dead animals in them also expose you to the diseases carried by the dead animal, so you have to have a safe way of disposing of the dead animal.

You can do this a number of ways. One method is to design the trap, so the trap is disposable. The inexpensive mouse traps you see in the home/farm stores, usually 2 for $1 are designed to be thrown away when they kill a mouse.

To dispose of this trap, put on a pair of medical gloves, pick up the trap, place it in a piece of newspaper and dispose of it in your outside trash can.

Another method is to design the trap to dispose of the critter for you. One trap is the bucket trap. Basically, you take a 5-gallon bucket, fill it with water, get a board to act as a ramp to the top of the bucket, and bait the trap with peanut butter.

To empty, all you have to do is take the bucket and throw the water and dead critters out by your property line.

Another method, of protecting yourself from vectors, is to prevent vectors from biting you.

You can do this in a variety of ways.

One example is using a sleeping net. The net protects you from mosquitoes as you sleep. If global warming is actually happening, the changing climate may increase tropical diseases in the southern maybe even the whole United States. Some of these diseases are carried by night-time mosquitoes.

Another method of protecting yourself, from biting insects, is to wear DEET. DEET is the active ingredient in bug spray.

Preventing medical emergencies is not limited to preventing diseases. It also includes preventing accidents, and there are many ways to prevent accidents.

Don't store medicines next to candy, and don't tell your kids that medicine is candy. Because when they want "candy," they may eat all of your medicine as candy. Just like you said.

Don't store fuel, gasoline, diesel, and/or propane, in your home.

Don't smoke in bed. Heck, just quit smoking.

Don't put power cord under rugs.

The don'ts could and do continue forever. There are many of them. You will need to use common sense and do research on your specific situation.

Just like the "Don'ts," the "Dos" are endless.

Do wear the proper safety equipment when using any equipment. Goggles and safety glasses are needed to protect your eyes. Ear plugs or ear muffs protect your hearing, Gloves protect your hands, and a hard hat protects your head. Climbing harnesses protect you, if you fall from your roof. But all of this equipment will only protect you, if you are wearing and using the equipment properly.

Sleep is also important. Get enough sleep, so you are rested before doing something potentially dangerous.

OK, you have taken steps to prevent accidents. What happens if there is an accident. What do you do?

Call 911. Cool

What happens if emergency services are too far away?

You could provide "First Aid." Don't know first aid!

That's OK. The Red Cross will teach you first aid for a small fee.

Don't have any money. You can download the U.S. Army's first aid manual, and you and some friends can practise on each other. If you don't know how to get the U.S. Army first aid manual, read the "Second Half-Health/Medical" for instructions.

If you are going to provide first aid, you are going to need a quality first aid kit. Now, don't go to the store and expect to buy a quality first aid kit for $19.95.

The inexpensive kits are ok, if you are expecting to only treat minor cuts and scraps. If you expecting to treat broken bones, severe bleeding, gunshot wounds, and other severe injuries you are going to need a better kit.

There are several different ways of getting a better first aid kit.

One way is to buy it. When buying a prepared kit, you are paying someone to assemble the contents of the kit. This cuts into the amount of supplies you have. Plus, you don't know the quality of each individual item in a prepared kit.

Another way is to prepare the kit yourself. Do some research and buy the equipment and supplies, you think you need.

Another way is to make or improvise the items you need. Somethings, you will have to buy. Some things you can make, such as backboards from plywood and bandages from bed sheets; additionally, you can improvise wound compresses from maxi- pads.

So you have a first aid kit, but you feel the need for something more. You can obtain further medical training.

Usually, people check out the local community college. These community colleges offer classes on becoming an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), Paramedic, Nurse, and beginning courses for people later transferring to medical school to become Physician Assistants (PA) or Medical Doctors (MD).

Avoid "Doctor Assistants" schools. They usually teach people to be paper pushers for doctors.

So get your first-aid kit together, learn some first-aid skills, and ...

I'll see you next week!


Common Cold

American Lung Association: The Common Cold

Kid's Health: Infections: Common Cold

Hands On Health-South Carolina-How can you prevent influenza?

Mouse Bucket Trap

Women: Stay Healthy at Any Age

Men: Stay Healthy at Any Age

Preventive Care Timeline

Hooah For Health-Deployment Immunization:

Deployment Medical Information Sheets:

Public Health Pest Control Manual

U.S. Navy - Shipboard Pest Control manual

Armed Forces Pest Management Board Technical Guide #36


DEET - Frequently Asked Questions

Accident Prevention

Accident Prevention

First Aid Kit

Wilderness Medical Systems

Survival Unlimited-Expedition First Aid Kit

Doctors for Disaster Preparedness: A Basic Medical Kit for a 10-20 person Shelter