Off Grid Tip: How to Tell How Much Daylight is Left

How to Tell How Much Daylight is LeftThis post is by Bernie Carr, apartmentprepper.com

I mentioned a while back that we “unplugged” from devices at our recent camping trip:  no GPS, no cell phones or laptops.  The kids felt strange at first, but eventually got used to it.

Apt Prepper son used this trick he learned watching Les Stroud, Survivorman – to find out how much time is left until the sky goes completely dark.  It was around 7 pm or so at the time, and he estimated around two hours and 15 minutes of daylight left.  He estimated it would be dark around 9:15 pm.  I had a solar watch and I checked the time to see if he was accurate.  I thought that seemed really late but I waited to see if it would really work.

After the sun finally went down and it was pitch black, I checked the time:  9:15.  The method was amazingly accurate.

Here’s how:

Hold your arm and stick  your hand out.  Place your hand between the sun and the horizon.  Each finger represents 15 minutes, and four fingers will equal one hour.   If you can stack your hands twice then that is two hours and so on.  In our case, at around 7 pm, Apt Prepper son was able to stack his hands twice plus one finger between the sun and the horizon, thereby coming up with 9:15 pm.

This method can be a lifesaver if you are out in the wilderness without a way to tell time.  You can gauge how much daylight you have left so you can return back to base camp in a timely manner.

 

© Apartment Prepper 2014

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Please Welcome our New Sponsor: PowerStrips All Natural Pain Relief

I am happy to welcome our new sponsor, PowerStrips All Natural Pain Relief

ALL NATURAL PAIN RELIEF

As you know I choose our sponsors carefully by checking into their products and reliability.  Here’s why I think PowerStrips could have emergency preparedness benefits:

  • All Natural Pain Reliever 
  • No Prescription Required
  • Water Soluble
  • Lightweight ( A pack of 15 strips weigh a little over 1 lb)
  • Small as a greeting card. 
  • Strips can be used individually (Worn as a patch)
  • Strips are easily stored and transported (Perfect fit for a bug out bag)
  • Strips have a shelf life of 2 years
  • PowerStrips have as an ingredient ionic silver which is an antibacterial, and an anti fungal
  • PowerStrips have as an ingredient Alpha 3 CMP marine phytoplankton which is a complete source of nutrition 
  • PowerStrips have as an ingredient Fermented Red Korean Ginseng which relives pain, stress memory improvement etc.
  • Product ships anywhere in the world for $4.95 flat rate per pack.

I’ve also been testing the product myself, and I am going to post the results in a separate blog post next week.

In the meantime, please visit the PowerStrips website  Thanks for your support!

 

Titan Ready USA – HERCulean Giveaway! July 14-21

titan-giveaway-ad

The Prepared Bloggers are always looking for ways to help our loyal readers be prepared for the unexpected. We are so grateful to team up with Titan Ready USA for this fabulous giveaway. We all know we need water, and we need a way to cook our meals. These units are just what the doctor ordered when it comes to being properly prepared. We will have four winners in this giveaway. One winner will win one of the following items listed below. The giveaway starts July 14th, 2014 @12:15 am (CST) and ends July 21st, 2014 @ 11:55 pm (CST). This giveaway is open to anyone 18 years of age and older who is a resident of the USA. This giveaway is open to residents of the 48 Continental US States only. Each winner will be sent an email and the winner must respond within 24 hours or another one winner will be chosen. We are so excited for this giveaway! Who couldn’t use these awesome items?!

Everything you need to stack and connect two 55 gallon water storage barrels. Racks are welded and powder coated here in the USA. Wide base for stability in every emergency situation. Assembles in minutes with aluminum bung wrench (included) and a flat head screwdriver. Water rotation has NEVER been so easy!
Bake, cook and dehydrate without the use of electricity or gas, indoors or out; the HERC is extremely portable, durable and economical. The HERCules (Home Emergency Radiant Cooking)™ XXL Oven harnesses the thermal energy from tea light candles, storing it in quarry stones. Cook anything, anytime, anywhere, regardless of the situation.
The HERC Oven is designed to harness the thermal energy from tea light candles storing it in quarry stones. The patent pending design of the HERC uses not one but two methods of thermal energy transfer. Like your conventional oven HERC uses convection and electromagnetic radiation (radiant) like the sun heats you when you step outside. Fueled by tea light candles makes baking & cooking without the use of electricity or gas easy, economical and even fun! The HERC Oven provides an alternative cooking method for your family in the events of limited resources and/or emergency situations.

  • Fueled by 10 tea lights (Yes the same little candles you get everywhere)
  • Fuel cost is $0.15 per hour cook time ($2.50-3.00 per hour with propane after you buy the tank)
  • Average approximate burn time of 3.5 hours at 350 degrees with 30 minutes preheat period (total of 3 hours burn time)
  • Accommodates 8″x 8″ square pan, 9″x 9″ square pan, and 9″ round pan
  • Indoor use (because it might not be safe outside to cook, i.e. Zombie apocalypse)
  • Bake & cook 24/7 and when raining, snowing or whatever mother nature throws your way (ladies and gentlemen solar has left the building)
  • Easy to clean (heavy duty stainless steel construction)
  • Easy, convenient assembly and dis-assembly (can store in 12″ x 12″ x 2″ space)
  • Assembled Dimensions: 12″ square by 10″ high (fits nicely on your counter top)
  • Proudly manufactured 100% in U.S.A. (because it matters to us)
One (1) ECO HERC. Not on website yet. $189.00 w/shipping included
Thanks again to Titan Ready USA for making this fabulous giveaway possible!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

Monday Musings: 7/14/2014

Welcome to another Monday Musings, where we share interesting links as well as updates on the blog and preps.  Lots of things going on this week!

First the updates:

Wanted:  a natural mosquito repellant that works

This week we are being extra careful about applying insect repellant as we heard the Chikungunya virus has come to HoustonI told you about this weeks ago, and now it’s here.  This mosquito borne virus has no vaccine and can be quite miserable if you catch it.  I have spray on repellants containing DEET which are effective, but I’d prefer to use more natural repellants.  This week I will be trying some out.  I’ll post about it soon.

Giveaways going on

You can still enter to win a free Mega One meal replacement for Food Storage made by Legacy from Preparewise

As a requirement in the entry, please remember to follow @LegacyPremium and have them tweet about the giveaway using the hashtag #ilovepreparewise

Also, the Prepared Bloggers are holding a Titan Ready Water Giveaway starting today.

So many reviews so little time

My review pile is growing steadily, and they are scheduled several weeks in advance.  Being short on space, a corner next to my bed is stacked high with books and items waiting to be read and tested.  As you know I try out everything to talk about on this blog and these experiments take time.  Some reviews include giveaways, but some don’t.  I figure they would still be helpful to someone who is considering purchasing the item and looking for information before making a decision.  You may see a few additional review posts in the next few weeks, hopefully you will find them of value.

Prepared Bloggers Network Update

As you know I am a member of the Prepared Bloggers Network, a fine group of preparedness and homesteading bloggers.  Please visit the Facebook page, we also have a new page on Pinterest.

Now for the links…

New Adventure Show with Creek Stewart

I got an email announcing a new series featuring friend of the blog, Creek Stewart, who runs Willow Haven Outdoor.  The new show is called “Fat Guys in the Woods” and it premieres on Sunday, August 10 at 10:00 p.m. ET following “So You Think You’d Survive?” at 9:00 p.m. ET.

In every episode of “Fat Guys in the Woods,” Creek brings three average Joes to the woods to survive for a week, while teaching them the skills necessary for survival.

The premiere episode features three friends from California, with Creek’s guidance, who embark on a bitter cold survival adventure in the Smoky Mountains during record-breaking low temperatures…the same week where three hikers were airlifted from the same region after battling for their lives. After making a massive wikiup shelter and starting a fire with flint they find in the woods, the guys need to survive the freezing weather conditions and find food armed with little beyond their own two hands.

Click here for a link to the promo spot for the show.

Fat Guys in the Woods

“Fat Guys in the Woods”: Survival Expert Creek Stewart

Photo Credit: The Weather Channel

I have not seen the show, so I can’t do a review just yet, but I look forward to seeing it.

Ebola in Africa: Can we dodge a global pandemic?

Forgotten vials of smallpox found in storage room

Deadliest, Rarest Form of Plague Contracted Near Denver

One Of The NSA’s Original Whistleblowers Says The Goal Is ‘Total Population Control’

Breakfast takes a bigger bite out of your wallet

10 habits you should pick up from your grandmother

Small Batch Fruit Preserving

Take care and have a great week everyone!

 

The Dirt on Rice…Literally

The Dirt on Rice... LiterallyThis post originally appeared in The Organic Prepper

By Daisy Luther

Rice has long been at the top of the hierarchy in the prepper’s pantry. It’s inexpensive, a source of energy-boosting carbohydrates and can extend a humble serving of meat to turn it into a meal for a hungry family.  But lately, it seems that rice is falling from favor – and there are a few very valid reasons for that.

First of all, the pesticide load on conventionally grown rice is tremendous. PANNA (Pesticide Action Network of North America) identified more than 40 different pesticides on rice grown in California, with 15 of those pesticides on their “bad actors” list – which means that the pesticides have been proven in multiple studies to have negative effects on human beings and/or groundwater systems.

The website Whats On My Food? noted that the pesticides included those which were known to be carcinogenic, bee toxins, human reproductive and developmental toxins, neurotoxins and suspected hormone disruptors.

Rice that has been grown organically is not soaked in pesticides and fungicides from seed to package, like conventional rice. This is a vast improvement for the purity and nutritional value of a bulk rice purchase. White rice, when stored properly, has a far longer shelf life than brown rice, which is far more nutritious (and many find it much tastier as well).

Unfortunately, though, even organic rice is not the best thing to serve on a regular basis. Recent studies have shown that all rice, organic and conventional, has a high level of naturally occurring arsenic.

Arsenic is a metallic element that is toxic to multi-cellular life forms. There are two types of arsenic: inorganic and organic. Inorganic arsenic has not bonded with carbon, and is a known carcinogen. Organic arsenic is found in seafood and is generally considered to be non-toxic. It is excreted through urine within about 48 hours of consumption.
Arsenic is taken into the rice from the soil, through the roots of the plant. Arsenic can get into the soil in many different ways, including the use of arsenic-containing pesticides. These pesticides can remain in the soil for up to 45 years after they were sprayed. Another source of arsenic in the soil is fertilizer made from chicken droppings – commercial chicken feed has been found to have high levels of the toxin. When rice fields are deliberately flooded, the water soluble arsenic in the soil is delivered to the roots of the plants.

Brown rice contains more arsenic than white rice – the arsenic accumulates in the hull, which is stripped during processing. The hull, however, contains most of the nutrients in the rice.

Arsenic can be toxic in both the short-term and the long-term. Everyone is familiar with the use of arsenic as a poison. According to the Mayo Clinic:
“Arsenic is perhaps the best known of the metal toxins, having gained notoriety from its extensive use by Renaissance nobility as an antisyphilitic agent…A wide range of signs and symptoms may be seen in acute arsenic poisoning including headache, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, hypotension, fever, hemolysis, seizures, and mental status changes. Symptoms of chronic poisoning, also called arseniasis, are mostly insidious and nonspecific. The gastrointestinal tract, skin, and central nervous system are usually involved. Nausea, epigastric pain, colic abdominal pain, diarrhea, and paresthesias of the hands and feet can occur.”

A study performed at Dartmouth University discovered the presence of arsenic in organic items sweetened with brown rice syrup at a level that was 17 times higher than the allowable amount of arsenic in drinking water. Rodale Press reported on the study:
Brian Jackson, PhD, the study’s author, said that it wasn’t just brown rice syrup that posed an arsenic threat, but any diet high in rice products, for instance, gluten-free diets in which rice flour is commonly used as a replacement for wheat. Rice is easily contaminated because arsenic is very similar to silica—a mineral rice needs in order to grow. “The rice does not discriminate between the source of arsenic,” Jackson notes. “If there is arsenic in the soil, whether from pesticides or naturally, or both, then it can be taken up by rice.”

…Lifetime, cumulative exposure to arsenic has been linked to cancers of the bladder, lungs, skin, kidney, nasal passages, liver, and prostate, but in a letter to Nature’s One, researcher Jackson told the company, “we don’t know what risks are associated with low level, limited-duration exposures.”

Consumer Reports independently tested a large number of rice products on supermarket shelves, with some very alarming results (you can see the chart documenting the arsenic levels of popular items like 365 brown rice, Great Value rice, Uncle Ben’s enriched parboiled, Gerber baby cereal, Kellogg’s Rice Krispies, Quaker rice cakes and many more.

The magazine published an expose about arsenic that included the following facts:
· White rice grown in Arkansas, Louisiana, Missouri, and Texas, which account for 76 percent of domestic rice, generally had higher levels of total arsenic and inorganic arsenic in our tests than rice samples from elsewhere.
· Within any single brand of rice we tested, the average total and inorganic arsenic levels were always higher for brown rice than for white.
· People who ate rice had arsenic levels that were 44 percent greater than those who had not, according to our analysis of federal health data. And certain ethnic groups were more highly affected, including Mexicans, other Hispanics, and a broad category that includes Asians.
· Reducing arsenic in food is feasible. We examined the efforts of two food companies, including Nature’s One, trying to tackle the problem and learned about methods being used to try to reduce arsenic in products.
· Based on these findings, our experts are asking the Food and Drug Administration to set limits for arsenic in rice products and fruit juices as a starting point.

The arsenic cannot be completely removed from the rice through washing or cooking methods – it’s there, inherent in the grain. It can be reduced. though, by up to 30% by washing the rice thoroughly before cooking it. The Asian cooking method of 1 part rice to 6 parts water, draining well before serving, as opposed to allowing your rice to absorb all the cooking liquid in the North American manner of cooking rice, is also helpful in reducing the presence of arsenic. These two steps also help to remove pesticides and antifungals that have been sprayed on the rice, as well as additives like talc and cornstarch which are sometimes added at the packaging plant in order for rice to have the clean white appearance we are so familiar with. Proper washing and cooking methods can significantly reduce the amount of toxins in home-prepared rice.
*****
I performed a little rice washing experiment this morning because I was curious whether I could get any visible results. I used the same method as I always do for prepping rice. I used a conventionally grown brown rice for this. I don’t have a lab, so I can’t tell you exactly what I removed from the rice – but the visual tells me I do NOT want to skip this – ever!

Rice1
I first soaked the rice in a baking soda rinse – 4 tbsp of baking soda to 2 cups of water.

Rice2

Then I drained the rice into a white bowl to make it easier to see what came off in the soak. I ended up with a dirty, dingy looking water with little flecks of dirt in it.

Rice3I then washed out the bowl and dried it. I rinsed the rice into the bowl – this time I put a fork in the bottom of the bowl to illustrate how cloudy and dirty the rinse water was.

Rice4Again, I washed and dried the bowl and placed the spoon in the bottom.
After the 3rd rinse you could start to see the fork a little better.

Rice5
I washed and dried the bowl and fork yet again.
By the time I rinsed it a 4th time, the water looked clean and clear.

Rice6My personal rules for rice have changed after doing the research for this article.
1.) I won’t buy commercial products made from rice, because I don’t know the process that has been used to clean the rice and remove pesticides, dirt and arsenic from it. This goes for organic as well as conventional rice products.
2.) Rice consumption will be limited to once per week, if that, in our household.
3.) I won’t ever eat rice at a restaurant again! I’ve seen how they dump rice right from the box into the pot.
4.) I’ll only buy organic rice because of the outrageous amount of pesticide usage.
In a prepping scenario, if your water is limited, rice is going to be the last thing you want to prepare because of the extensive washing and cooking water required. You don’t want to rely long-term on a food that contains something as toxic and carcinogenic as arsenic – the poison can build up in your system and cause serious problems. Look to other grains for your carbohydrates – consider quinoa, wheat berries, couscous, barley and oats – none of these grains has the extensive pesticide load of rice and the natural arsenic levels are far lower.
About the author:
Daisy Luther is a freelance writer and editor who lives in a small village in the Pacific Northwestern area of the United States. She is the author of The Pantry Primer: How to Build a One Year Food Supply in Three Months. On her website, The Organic Prepper, Daisy writes about healthy prepping, homesteading adventures, and the pursuit of liberty and food freedom. Daisy is a co-founder of the website Nutritional Anarchy, which focuses on resistance through food self-sufficiency. Daisy’s articles are widely republished throughout alternative media. You can follow her on Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter, and you can email her at daisy@theorganicprepper.ca

 

Daisy Luther is a freelance writer and editor who lives in a small village in the Pacific Northwestern area of the United States.  She is the author of The Pantry Primer: How to Build a One Year Food Supply in Three Months. On her website, The Organic Prepper, Daisy writes about healthy prepping, homesteading adventures, and the pursuit of liberty and food freedom.  Daisy is a co-founder of the website Nutritional Anarchy, which focuses on resistance through food self-sufficiency. Daisy’s articles are widely republished throughout alternative media. You can follow her on Facebook, Pinterest,  and Twitter, and you can email her at daisy@theorganicprepper.ca – See more at: http://www.theorganicprepper.ca/about-daisy#sthash.rMnl59g0.dpuf

Save a Spot in Your Food Storage Shelf! MEGA ONE SHAKE MIX Review and Giveaway

MegaOneMealReplacementShake

I’ve been considering meal replacement and protein products as a supplement to my food storage and even contacted a few companies about information about their products in terms of long term storage.  I did not get a single response.  That’s why I as excited to hear when Preparewise introduced their  Mega One Meal Replacement Shake from Legacy Premium, which offers 10+ years of shelf life.

I had to try it. Here are MegaOne Chocolate Shake Features –

  • Total Servings: 15 Hearty / 30 Light Servings
  • Total Calories: 4,290
  • Total Weight: 2.59 lb
  • Hearty Serving Size: 3 Scoops (286 Cal)
  • Light Serving Size: 1.5 Scoops (143 Cal)
  • All Natural Ingredients
  • Made from 28 super foods including Chia, Acai, Goji & more
  • Incredibly Delicious
  • Long Shelf Life: 10+ Years
  • Just Add Water and Shake to Prepare
  • Perfect addition to emergency food storage
  • Raw, Vegan, Gluten Free, Non-GMO
  • Low Fat – Trans Fat Free
  • Complete Amino Acid Profile
  • Dairy & Soy Free
  • High Protein (30 grams per hearty serving)
  • Low Sugar
  • Complete Vitamin B Complex
  • Good Source of Fiber
  • Immune Booster
  • Cholesterol Free
  • Great for breakfast, weight loss, nutritional supplement
  • Great for hiking, camping, disaster supply & more

Here’s what it looks like right out of the pouch:

MegaOneMealReplacementShake_powderJust add water, and mix well.

MegaOneMealReplacementShake_mixedNow for the taste:

As I always do with taste tests, I share with another member of the family.  I liked the shake, but Apt Prepper son was not wild about the low sugar taste.  However, he does like the nutrients and protein provided by the shake so he still drinks it.

I also wanted to share a few recipes from Amy, my contact at Preparewise.

Recipe 1
2 cups water
1 full serving Mega One
1/4 cup flax seed
1 tablespoon chopped ginger
banana
4 cups spinach
1 cup frozen fruit
Mix all together in a blender or Nutribullet.
Recipe 2
Large Handful of spinach
Handful of frozen berries from Costco
Handful of frozen fruit from Costco
Water to consistency
Three scoops (one serving) of chocolate or vanilla flavored Mega Meal One
Mix all together in a blender or Nutribullet.
Additional notes:  Some replace the water with:
yogurt
almond milk
milk
ice chips
ice cream
Additional ingredients people have added:
various fruits, bananas, berries, pineapple
peanut butter
malt powder
frozen berries
spinach
I can vouch for adding bananas, berries and lots of ice.  It’s filling too.
Why I think Mega One Meal Replacement Shakes are a great addition to your food storage pantry:
  • Quick preparation
  • Just add water- does not require a lot of ingredients
  • Great source of nutrition
  • Occupy very little space
  • Long shelf life
Now for the giveaway!
Prepare Wise is giving a packet of Mega One Meal Replacement Shake (as pictured in the title above)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

Please click here to vote for me at Top Prepper Websites!

 

Survival Tin Party Favor

Survival Tin Party FavorThis post is by Bernie Carr, apartmentprepper.com

I got this heart tin as a wedding party favor.  Originally it contained mints but after they were gone, I kept the container.

I thought it would be fun to use it as a survival tin, as I had done a while back with my pocket sized first aid kit.  Instead of giving out candy, why not include items that could one day help someone out in an emergency.  It’s useful, handy and can be stashed in a desk or purse.

Here are a couple of ideas:

All purpose survival tin

Secret Survival Tin 1Include:

  • Strike anywhere matches
  • A couple of safety pins
  • Paracord
  • Anti-bacterial wipe
  • Cash:  a few coins and a bill

You can also include a couple of water purification tablets, paper clip, rubber bands etc.

First Aid Tin

First Aid TinInclude:

  • A couple sizes of adhesive bandage
  • Sanitizing wipe
  • Pain reliever
  • Antibiotic ointment
  • Diarrhea remedy (already inside the tin)

You can also add allergy medicine, a couple of cotton swabs, eye drops etc.

First Aid Tin 2

© Apartment Prepper 2014

Show young kids that being prepared can be fun!

Jake and Miller's Big Adventure© Apartment Prepper 2014

Please click here to vote for me at Top Prepper Websites!

Monday Musings: 7/7/2014

Monday Musings 07072014This post is by Bernie Carr, apartmentprepper.com

Welcome to another Monday Musings, where we share interesting links as well as updates on the blog and preps.

First the blog updates:

Encore interview   I have an encore interview with our friend Gaye over at Backdoor Survival.  Check it out here.  Don’t forget to submit your entry.

Prepared Bloggers

Prepared BloggersJust a quick reminder to check out this wonderful group I belong to:  Prepared Bloggers for lots of great preparedness and self-sufficiency articles.

Thoughts on giveaways

As long time readers know, I have been doing giveaways on this blog for some time.  Sometimes they are sponsors, sometimes not, and sometimes I just team up with other bloggers to do them.  There have been some giveaways that have disappointing results, and I wonder why very few responded; other times, we have enthusiastic responses.

It is frustrating when a winner is chosen and they do not respond within a timely manner.  Don’t they check their emails?   The rules state the winner of the drawing must respond within 48 hours or another winner is chosen so we do.

I still do them anyway, and many readers have left positive comments about them.

Why do I like them?

I do them for the simple reason that a giveaway gave me a great start when I began my own preparedness journey.   I won the Cansolidator from Modern Survival Online.  I never won anything before and was so excited to win.  I did a review of the item and it helped me organize my small pantry.

Who won the Crafting with Paracord Giveaway?

Gary won the giveaway for Crafting with Paracord.

Now for the links…

18 Signs That The Global Economic Crisis Is Accelerating As We Enter The Last Half Of 2014

Fear and Rumors Hinder Containment of Ebola Outbreak

Is this wise? Controversial scientist recreates pandemic flu virus that killed 500,000 people… except it’s WORSE

Why It’s Possible to Drown in a Dry Parking Lot

Prepping in an Apartment with an Eye to the Future

How Fast Food Providers Beat Inflation – Add Wood Pulp To Burgers

30 Everyday Products You Can Make Instead of Buying at Walmart


Source: Fix.com

Take care and have a great week everyone!

 

© Apartment Prepper 2014

Show young kids that being prepared can be fun!

Jake and Miller's Big Adventure

Please click here to vote for me at Top Prepper Websites!

Emergency Essentials/BePrepared

Emergency Essentials/BePrepared

Nite Ize DoohicKey Key Tool – Does it Work?

Nite Ize DooHicKeyThis post is by Bernie Carr, apartmentprepper.com

Today we are reviewing the Nite Ize DoohicKey Key Tool, a little gadget that has multiple uses.

According to the package, it can be used as:

  • Carabiner
  • Box Cutter
  • Bottle Opener
  • Wrench
  • Ruler
  • Flat Head Screw Driver

The Nite Ize DoohicKey Key Tool is small enough to place in your key ring.

I tested out its uses and found it to be sturdy enough to perform its intended uses.  I also like that it does not take up a lot of space.

Here is one of the uses I found for it:

Nite Ize carabinerI hung up a collapsible water carrier to dry for several hours and the Nite Ize DoohicKey Key Tool held up well.

It also worked well for opening boxes, and is not sharp enough to cut yourself.  It came in handy as a bottle opener.

Priced at $6.71 on Amazon, it is inexpensive enough to buy one for everyone in the family.  I think it would also make a nice stocking stuffer, office gift even for people who don’t want to think about prepping.

© Apartment Prepper 2014

Please click here to vote for me at Top Prepper Websites!

Happy Independence Day!

Happy Independence DayI wish everyone a Happy 4th of July!   As we celebrate our country’s independence, let us remember the heroism and sacrifice that went into gaining and maintaining our freedoms.

It’s also a good time to consider our own personal independence from whatever keeps us from living our best life:  freedom from debt, consumerism, destructive habits or even over-reliance on the system.  We can’t all be off-grid, but we can all learn to be a little bit more self-sufficient as our freedom loving ancestors had been.

We are blessed to be living in this great country and I am grateful.

Enjoy!