Tag Archives: Passport to Preparedness

  • Fired Up

    Want something that will give light, keep you warm, and help you cook? Get fired up about starting up a fire!

    The cold weather makes me yearn for the warmth of a crackling fire. Though most of us long for the fire simply for the ambiance, during an emergency situation having that fire could help you cook, give you light, and keep you warm. Thinking about building a fire takes me back to the days of my youth. I remember trying to hone my fire making skills at girl’s camp. At first the beautiful flames were illusive, but soon with some help and a few extra tools, I was roasting marshmallows and warming my hands by the crackling fire. Just like my girl’s camp days, the time to learn about and prepare for making a fire is before an emergency strikes.

    Technology has provided us many options besides a fire to keep us warm, give us light, and help us cook. Nevertheless, this most basic of skills is still one of the most important things for us to learn. Let’s begin with the basics of fire building:

    First, determine a safe place to build your fire. Build on dirt or rock, as far from dry grasses and other vegetation as possible. Be sure you have water nearby to extinguish your fire should it get out of hand. You will need three sizes of material to make a great fire. These are calling tinder, kindling, and fire fuel.

    Tinder is material smaller in width than a match. Shredded bark and pine needles are examples of tinder. Many fire starters are simply a flint and tinder. You can even find fire starter pellets that you can use as the tinder. They are incredibly handy and can help you get your fire up and crackling! Next you need to gather kindling. Kindling is the small sticks up to the size of your wrist. After the tinder and kindling, you need to gather your wood for the fuel. I prefer to arrange my wood into a tee pee configuration, with the tinder and kindling beneath.

    You have a couple of choices when it comes to lighting your kindling. Waterproof matches are especially smart in an emergency along with lighters and flint and steel. I like the idea of having a few options on hand just in case.

    To extinguish your fire, simply sprinkle with water and stir the ashes in with dirt. Continue to sprinkle the water until there is no longer steam or hot embers. Be certain it is completely cool before leaving your fire unattended.

    Take advantage of the cold winter weather and teach your family how to build a fire. Because with a little know how and a few helpful tools, you can get all fired up!

    -Angie Sullivan

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: Passport to Preparedness, angie sullivan

  • Food Prep Preparedness

    With the holidays just around the corner, you’ll be preparing more of your favorite foods. Do you have the tools you need not just for the holidays, but also for your preparedness pantry?

    The crisp, fragrant fall air has us all enjoying the bounty of the harvest and looking forward to the holidays ahead. Along with the holidays come the many family recipes that we enjoy as traditions and comfort foods. Certainly, you will be taking stock of your kitchen and making sure you have the food prep tools necessary to get you through the next few months.

    As you think about updating or replacing some of your much needed food preparation tools, don’t forget to think about the items you could use for your preparedness pantry too! For example, I’m a sucker for the aroma of fresh baked bread on a cool fall day. I’ll be using my electric wheat grinder quite a bit in the next few months. As I use my electric mill, I should certainly make sure that I’ve got something available to me should the electricity be turned off. A hand grain mill would be something I should certainly consider for preparedness food preparation.

    Are you enjoying all that fresh fruit? Could you use some help peeling and slicing it? I know my cobbler would be a whole lot easier if I could use a Potato and Apple Peeler to make quick work of that bushel of crisp apples. Perhaps your family prefers a fresh cherry pie? The Cherry Stoner is a must have for you! Many of these items are not only handy to have around for the holidays, but also for your food storage as they are hand operated and do not require electricity.

    Not only should we be thinking about those big tools, but what about the small and simple things needed to keep your kitchen functioning? Nothing can halt a recipe like a faulty can opener. Think of all the rows and rows of cans you’ve got stored away, now imagine not being able to open them! I recommend storing a few extra can openers just in case. Take a moment and go through your kitchen drawers and update or replace broken or faulty measuring cups, knives, cutting boards, and other food preparation tools.

    As you prepare for your holiday happenings, don’t forget to think a little bit about your preparedness pantry and the food prep items that would be beneficial during an emergency. Take the time to be sure that you are food prep prepared!

    -Angie Sullivan

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: Passport to Preparedness, angie sullivan

  • Power Up

    By Angie Sullivan

    With a few handy emergency tools, even with the power out, you can be powered up!

    Being without power during an emergency can be not only inconvenient, but it can also prevent you from using some of your most essential tools. Many of us have flashlights and radios stored for an emergency, but what good are these items without the batteries to go with them? Storing extra batteries is a great idea, but batteries do have a shelf-life, and should be tested and rotated. Checking your batteries twice is year is often recommended. If you don’t want to be worried about dead batteries, consider a battery charger. A solar battery charger uses the power of the sun to juice up rechargeable batteries, which you can easily find in an electronic or superstore. Not only would this be much more convenient than finding and replacing all your batteries regularly, it would also be an investment that paid off in the years to come.

    In addition to the solar battery charger, many other electronics can be found solar powered. Be on the lookout for solar flashlights, radios, and other essentials. If you would like the convenience of being able to plug in your electronics, consider a power generator. The Power Dome EX is a handy generator that stores energy. You plug it in and then the energy is available when you need it. It works well on the go and can be used to power anything you need to plug in, and it even has cables to jump your car. You can also purchase a power charger, the Goal0 Nomad 7M, that uses solar power. Just set it up in the sun and it’s ready to power anything from a laptop to a lamp!

    Gas powered generators are the next available resource if you want to keep your family powered up. The Honeywell Generator with Inverter HW2000i is a handy gasoline generator. It runs on gasoline and can provide a reliable source of power for any appliances or electronics you wish up to 2000 watts.

    Take advantage of the wonderful new technology available to help you stay powered up when the power’s out!

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: Passport to Preparedness, angie sullivan

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