Category Archives: Emergency Preparedness Ideas

Surviving When Modern Medicine Fails

As many of you know, I started using Essential Oils several years ago and love them. They have improved our lives in many areas. We use them in our laundry, as aromatherapy, to treat sunburn, poison ivy, bug bites, in food preparation, for cold, and even for pneumonia and bronchitis. There are literally hundreds of oils – and many books that will tell you about them and what they are good for. I have a few of them and I love reading about the oils, but… if I know what my problem is, I want the practical, nitty-gritty recipes! How much and how often?  

modern medicine cover

One of the oil books I bought was Surviving When Modern Medicine Fails by Dr. Scott A. Johnson.  I really like this book for several reasons. While he does give basic information about essential oils in the beginning, he also gives you a list of 40 essential oils that would be the most valuable to have in an emergency situation if medical care is not available. (Some of you may be thinking that is nuts…but think about natural disasters that are happening all over the world where it is so hard to get drinking water to people, much less medical care.) Then the rest of the book is filled with recipe after recipe of oil solutions for everything from  abdominal cramps to congestion to flu to staph infections and strep throat to whooping cough.  Each recommendation includes the dosing methods and the timing of administering the doses.

I appreciate that this book is concise and to the point. I have several other oil books that I refer to as well when we have a specific problem, but I find myself turning to this one first because of it is easy to find my information and move on with the problem. This is a great little resource to have on hand.

As always, this book is a resource and not intended to replace medical advice when needed.

All opinions are my own. I am not getting paid for this review.

Canning Meat Makes Sense!!

Home-canned chicken

Home-canned chicken

A couple of years ago, my sister mentioned that her Relief Society was having a class on canning meat.  I was interested and a little leery about it being safe.  Like our ancestors didn’t do it, right?  So I decided to try it with chicken and beef and have continued with the practice.

I love it.

I know the ingredients (store canned meat uses fillers and starches), I know my recipes, I know that the meat will still be good even if the power goes out (unlike my frozen foods), and it tastes great.

I love saving money and I LOVE the convenience of having it ready when I need it quickly.

 I use it to make enchiladas, BBQ meat, chicken salad, soups, and casseroles.

This week I decided I needed to get on the ball and get our supplies back up.

I canned 19 pints of chicken breast and 4 pints of beef.

Home-Canned Beef

Home-Canned Beef

I used trim cuts of beef, but there is still fat sitting at the top.  I simply open the jar, throw away the fat, drain the meat juices (save it for soup base) and use the meat in my recipes.

All New Square Foot Gardening – I’ve got the fever!

I am really excited to plan the garden and get started this year!  Last year was really difficult for me – our new house doesn’t open out on the back yard since it is on a hill so I couldn’t see the garden like I could at the old house and we were in the middle of a serious drought.

I finished reading the book called “Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children From Nature Deficit Disorder”, in early February.  It was so inspiring to me!  As you know I am adamant that we allow our children lots of time in nature, but this book talked about and provided details and “professional” knowledge to prove what I have already seen in my children! You can read about it here.

Anyway, one night after reading that book, I laid awake for a couple of hours planning how to include everything that I want in our yard – a place for a few chickens, several fruit trees, a very productive garden that allows me to can food, a place to include some bird and small animal inviting habitats – while reserving a place for my kiddos to run around to play and act out their imaginary story lines.  We don’t have a lot of space, but I figured it out by deciding that the garden could move to the front yard.  We don’t spend much time out front – but I can see it from the living room which means that I can easily take care of it in small snatches of time. 😉

When my parents moved, I requested that I get to read their book called “Square Foot Gardening” – a huge tome of information that would take me a long time to read.  I wanted to use that because it taught companion planting and how to get more in the garden for a bountiful harvest.  One day, though, I was looking for something on Amazon and saw the “All-New Square Foot Gardening: Grow More in Less Space” by the same author, Mel Bartholomew.  It was colorful, it was smaller, and the book was only about $12 or so. I admit that I bought it because I figured I would actually be able to read  it.

What I didn’t anticipate was how much I enjoyed it and how much I didn’t want to put it down.  It became my reading for a week – everything else went on the back-burner.  In the new method developed after 30 years of experience with the first SFG, Mr. Bartholomew developed a method that ANYONE can do – children, older people, disabled persons, and anyone who desires to have a chance to garden.  He shares how to make the beds, the grids, how to plan, plant, and harvest.  He shares plant information, their preferences and problems, and even a couple of recipes.  It is ORGANIC gardening, no chemicals required – and teaches how to make your own compost.  He teaches how to have a SFG in an apartment, in town, on a balcony, a step or set of steps.  It truly is for EVERYONE.  What I loved is the explanation of how to INEXPENSIVELY increase the space of your garden by building up a support instead of taking all the ground.  He even raises pumpkins and watermelons on support trellis’.

Here is a YouTube video of Mel explaining Square Foot Gardening.

Here’s a link to his SFG website.

You can get the book from Walmart or Amazon.  It’s worth the read.

By using this method, I can increase my garden productivity by 50% with significantly less work.  I can place the garden in the front and create my nature retreat in my back yard.

It’s the best of both worlds.

Emergency Ovens for Disasters

I am serving in our church as the Emergency Preparedness Specialist – which means that I am trying to help the members of our church think about and prepare for disasters.

“When ye are prepared, ye shall not fear.”

 ~ Doctrine and Covenants 38:30

We all know that the electricity goes out in disasters.  We also know that we like to eat and no one wants to waste their food during a emergency.  I found these emergency food ovens and thought I would share the information. 

Emergency Food Ovens

 Click on the images or links below to view the step by step instructions on how to build either one of these yourself at home for future use in case of emergency power outages or even when camping.

1. Cardboard Box Oven by

Note: be sure to read some of the comments posted in the article: don’t use glue or tape on inside of box and use un-coated wires.

 2. Cooking with a Cardboard Box Oven by

 What I love about these charcoal box ovens is they can actually bake at the same temperatures as our regular ovens at home.

Equation: 1 charcoal = 35-40 degrees F. Each charcoal briquette supplies 35-40 degrees of heat, so 9 briquettes will give us approx 360 degree oven. So just use the standard bake times.

I am so excited to try these!

What do you use or plan to use?