Ed That Matters https://www.edthatmatters.com Preparedness is an Educated Choice! Sun, 03 Nov 2019 22:58:02 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.2.4 https://www.edthatmatters.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/cropped-PrepperWebsiteLogo-CIRCLE-32x32.png Ed That Matters https://www.edthatmatters.com 32 32 Pipelines in the US When SHTF – Could They Be An Option? https://www.edthatmatters.com/pipelines-in-the-us/ https://www.edthatmatters.com/pipelines-in-the-us/#comments Sun, 03 Nov 2019 22:58:02 +0000 https://www.edthatmatters.com/?p=34182 In a true longterm grid-down scenario, those who are prepared with the right tools might have the opportunity to provide their family or group with much-needed fuel for survival.  This article will cover the basics of how a system of pipelines in the US can be identified and accessed with little information and the right tools. First, I must say that under normal circumstances we should never, ever tamper with any type of oil and gas equipment, pipeline or facilities. There is a high risk that one could inadvertently cause a system shutdown, an explosion, or a multi-million dollar product

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Pipelines in the US

In a true longterm grid-down scenario, those who are prepared with the right tools might have the opportunity to provide their family or group with much-needed fuel for survival.  This article will cover the basics of how a system of pipelines in the US can be identified and accessed with little information and the right tools.

First, I must say that under normal circumstances we should never, ever tamper with any type of oil and gas equipment, pipeline or facilities. There is a high risk that one could inadvertently cause a system shutdown, an explosion, or a multi-million dollar product release that could endanger lives and property. This includes pipelines, pump or compressor stations, valve settings, etc. Everything that flows through wellheads, pipelines, or refineries, will in some way kill you!

AN SHTF FUEL OPTION

Pipelines in the USBut in the event that there has been a longterm SHTF or TEOTWAWKI event, and the refineries are no longer manned by their operations staff, or the field equipment is no longer being maintained and controlled, things will begin to fail on our oil and gas systems. And most products will eventually stop flowing.

If no fuel is being refined, then eventually there will be nothing to be trucked to gas stations. That is if gas stations are even still operational. I am in no way suggesting that anyone (especially someone who has no knowledge of what they are messing with) tamper with or attempt to remove anything from oil and gas locations or out of pipelines, even if they are out of operation. But it will inevitably begin to happen if things ever fall apart and remain in shambles for very long. So this article is intended to bring to light a few things that should be considered for safety.

REFINERIES

Our major refineries are a very valuable resource, not only to the companies that own and operate them, but important to our nation on many different levels. There is a good reason that refineries all over the world become military targets during wartime.  The reason is the loss of oil and gas production and/or refining capabilities is one of the fastest ways to cripple an enemy nation. Therefore, regardless of the level of the disaster facing our country, at least some of these facilities will no doubt be guarded by the military, private security, or someone. So looting of any type, in or around both coastal and inland refineries could prove to be fatal. Also, the more these facilities are impacted by looting and damage during a shutdown of the type I’m talking about, the more difficult it will be and longer it will take to bring the facility back online when life begins to return to normal.

PIPELINES IN THE US

Crude oil, natural gas, refined gasoline, refined diesel, propane, and water are just a few of the products that flow through pipelines all over the world. But the few listed here, in my opinion, will be the most sought after during a long term disaster event. And even after refineries, cryogenic plants, liquid pump stations, and compressor stations have stopped operating to move these products, the products will remain in the pipelines. Most pipelines do have several points along its route where a valve setting or other type of riser comes up above ground, that someone could open up to collect some of the product inside. But anyone who attempts this should know that there is a very high probability that the pipeline still contains very high pressures, even though the pumps might not be operational. Anything like propane or natural gas in its gaseous state would require specialized fittings and equipment in order to capture the product into propane tanks or any similar container. These fittings could possibly be purchased from a propane distributor or online. Liquid pipelines such as crude oil, gasoline, diesel or natural gas liquids could be removed from above-ground valves with the proper pipe fittings and a fuel hose.

IDENTIFYING PIPELINES

OSHA and several state agencies mandate the proper marking and signage of pipelines and their products in the United States. The pipeline is required to have a “pipeline marker” that includes the name and contact information of the company who owns or operates the line and/or it’s contents. The markers must be placed at a specific distance from each other for the entire length of the pipeline. The pipeline markers are then required to be color-coded to signify the product inside. For example, a yellow marker indicates a natural gas line, purple is usually marking produced water that comes from oil wells (which is absolutely not drinkable.) Blue markers indicate freshwater, red markers could either indicate a fire suppressing liquid (like what’s inside a fire hydrant) or it could be marking electricity. Colors may vary a bit from place to place but the color-coding system is supposed to be international. To find out more about the color-coding system in your area, there are several online resources. One being your state’s one call system.

WELL PADS/WELL HEADS

Pipelines in the USThis is where all things oil and gas begin. At a well that has been drilled hundreds or thousands of feet into the ground. Pipe has then been inserted into the hole and so on. Again, everything on a well pad or production location will almost always have pressure behind it, everything will hurt or kill you. Most of these locations only have either crude oil or raw natural gas. Most production locations also have automated metering equipment that is powered by a 12v car battery connected to a solar panel. ( …..just saying……do what you will with that info 🙂

This automation usually only serves the purpose of sending information to a main network somewhere else about how much the well produced that day. Usually this isn’t necessary to the well or entire system coming back online after it has been down. Occasionally, the automation can control an electronic valve that can be operated remotely and will affect the operation of the entire system if removed or damaged.

On an oil production location, there are normally large tanks that store crude oil and in another tank, the produced water. All tanks are supposed to be properly labeled. These tanks also contain flammable vapor and have the possibility to contain poisonous gasses like hydrogen sulfide that will kill you.

MAKING PLANS NOW

If the removal of products from any of the places I’ve named becomes necessary, and if you’re reading this, then you must believe that day could come. Then you should consider making a plan now as to where you will remove product from and make sure you have the proper fittings and hoses to do so. The proper fittings will make it much safer than something thrown together out of junk laying around.

You should also consider wearing goggles, chemical gloves, and Tyvek suits if possible, or some type of chemical apron. Anything that will keep oil and other liquids out of your eyes, mouth and off of your skin and clothing. Never, under any circumstances should you try to knock a hole in any type of pipe or oil and gas equipment to collect what is inside. This could result in you taking several hundred pounds of liquid or gas pressure to the face and/or starting a fire with more pressure behind it than you can get away from.

Again, I’m not writing this to explain how to remove products that could be used in a disaster situation, ( even though this would be a great source for obtaining lots of fuel after gas stations are empty) nor do I condone doing so. But if things get bad enough for long enough, it is inevitable that people will begin to do this very thing. Hopefully, if that person ends up being you who read this article, you gained a bit of knowledge about how to do it safely.

This is a guest post by Derek Hayes.

Pipelines in the US when the SHTF

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]]> https://www.edthatmatters.com/pipelines-in-the-us/feed/ 10 Emergency Carry When Your Job Keeps You On the Road https://www.edthatmatters.com/preppers-emergency-carry/ https://www.edthatmatters.com/preppers-emergency-carry/#comments Sun, 27 Oct 2019 19:33:57 +0000 https://www.edthatmatters.com/?p=34175 I travel for work. For months at a time, I could be anywhere between 50 and 1500 miles from home. There are many different situations that I could face on a day to day basis while traveling through or working in an unknown area. Obviously the situation changes from place to place and because of this, there are several things I carry that most people probably wouldn’t include in a typical emergency bag. My “get home bags” are a bit bulky and some would say illogical. There are preparations that I have in place to get me home, or through any

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Emergency Carry

I travel for work. For months at a time, I could be anywhere between 50 and 1500 miles from home. There are many different situations that I could face on a day to day basis while traveling through or working in an unknown area. Obviously the situation changes from place to place and because of this, there are several things I carry that most people probably wouldn’t include in a typical emergency bag. My “get home bags” are a bit bulky and some would say illogical. There are preparations that I have in place to get me home, or through any foreseeable situation. Of course, there are too many possible scenarios to name here, but I wanted to share a few specific things for others who travel frequently to consider.

I guess I should say, I don’t necessarily try to prepare for every scenario that could possibly happen on the road or while I’m away from home because that would be near impossible. I plan for three or four scenarios that somewhat overlap to cover multiple needs and possible events. I try to stay prepared for any area-specific crime issues. The possibility of having to wait out a storm or disaster type situation while in a strange place for an unknown period of time with limited resources. And also the possibility of having to get home to my family from halfway across the country, with or without motorized travel.

Understanding Crime On the Road

Let’s first explore the area-specific crime issues. First off, as Machiavelli said, “before all else, be armed”. And as we all know, different states have different gun laws, so be aware of them. But always be armed with something. One of the best things I think you can do is look up crime statistics for the area you will be working or staying in. This should give you an idea of the most likely things to look out for. And obviously, situational awareness becomes so much more important when in a place you’ve never been before.

There are several good resources online for checking statistics, but as I’ve heard Todd talk about on the podcast, all crime isn’t always reported to certain agencies. It’s a good idea to check more than one place for crime stats and specific threats. I know that this can seem like a simple thing to be prepared for, but from experience, the southern border of Texas presents different risks to personal safety than Kansas City, Chicago or places on the East Coast and vice versa. It’s usually a good idea to know what to expect before you arrive. And I personally add region-specific preps to my bags before leaving home.

How to Check Your Vehicle for “Markers”

Again from experience, before getting into my vehicle anywhere, I walk around it and check things like tires and lug nuts to ensure that someone hasn’t removed a few lug nuts or loosened them so I end up on the side of the road in a less populated area that is potentially better suited for a robbery. I check to make sure that my vehicle hasn’t been visibly marked somehow that could be an indicator as to which white Chevy pickup or blue minivan to break into later or carjack at the next red light. A seemingly random spot wiped clean on the tailgate or trunk, or maybe a piece of tape on a taillight or headlight could indicate a vehicle with valuables inside. Or it could mark a “soft target”, a person disabled or otherwise unlikely to put up much fight. It could be marking the specific red ford car that has a mother and two children who are being targeted by human traffickers. Things like this are why it’s important to be as unpredictable with your schedule as possible while in unfamiliar places or even in your hometown. But just do a quick check frequently enough to notice something out of place. I could go on with these types of scenarios all day, but for the sake of the length of this article, I will move on to number two.

Emergency Carry When You Need to Hunker Down On the Road

The second thing I wanted to share ideas for is having to hunker down for an extended period of time in a motel room or a vehicle. I travel and room alone, therefore I rent a single bed hotel room. Upon check-in, I ask where the single rooms are located within the facility and request the room with the best tactical advantage ( closest to exits, the best view of the surrounding area, etc.) I also park where I can see the window to my room from my vehicle because then I can obviously see my vehicle from inside my room. I carry a Water Bob bladder in my clothing bag, which for those who don’t know, is a collapsible 75 or 100-gallon plastic container similar to a water bed bladder that goes in a bathtub to hold water. In the event of a power outage or when a big, bad storm is incoming and “bugging out” for home is either not possible or not yet necessary, I fill the water bob as soon as I can to ensure I have an ample supply of water. This next one is pretty simple, I always keep several dollars in quarters for vending machines, provided the electricity remains on while taking shelter at my hotel. Plenty of books and entertainment that doesn’t require a power source is always a good idea. In my opinion, the actual plans and preparations aren’t anywhere close to as important as the mindset of “I’m on my own and willing to do what I have to in order to survive whatever comes”.

Emergency Carry When You Need to Get Back Home

Prepper Emergency CarryThe third thing I plan for is, as I said, having to get home from a great distance. Obviously, if vehicles are working, fuel supply and trucking aren’t interrupted and roads are passable, then this wouldn’t be too big of a problem. But take one or all of those off the table and things get complicated.

I have a 100-gallon auxiliary fuel tank in the back of my pickup. It will take me a long distance without worrying about fuel. The pump that is mounted in the tank to pump fuel from the tank to the vehicle has a hose and nozzle like a typical fuel pump at a gas station, and will also suck fuel from something else and into the tank with a simple reversal of the wires on the battery. I also carry another way to siphon fuel and a small inline fuel pump that clips to a car battery. I print area-specific maps of my location and route home as soon as I get to my destination.

Related: EDC for Regular People and Then Some! The One Item You’ll Go Back Home For!

Carry Various Emergency Carry Bags 

As I said, I carry more than one emergency bag. I have a large bag that is your basic bug out type setup, except it has more volume of the normal items. A small tent and several types of water gathering/purification devices are also included along with a case of emergency water that I do not drink from.

I carry a bag containing a medical kit that I have assembled to fit my needs. It will give any paramedic response bag a run for its money. Not only do I work in very remote locations far away from home where cell service can be rare, but I have also encountered numerous car wrecks and other emergency situations in traveling between jobs or traveling to and from home. It also has road flares, light sticks and a fire rescue hood that all have multiple uses. There are several smoke grenades needed for wind direction and signaling when a medevac helicopter is inbound. A neck brace, folding stretcher, large burn gel pads and lots of other items.

Then there is the gun bag. I usually carry two pistols of varying concealability in the bag (and of course one on my person). A bolt action. 308, and an AR-15. I keep a couple of hundred rounds of ammo for each and plenty of extra mags with me too.

Now you might be thinking, “why does this goofball carry so much stuff, there’s no way one or even two people could carry all of that over 500+ miles if needed”.

Emergency Carry When There is No Vehicle

I carry with all of the other stuff, a modified, folding jogging stroller. This is the kind that has three large all-terrain type wheels similar to bicycle wheels. It has been modified to carry most of my stuff. And in the event that I have to walk home, the items I deem unnecessary for the specific type of emergency I encounter, I plan to either trade-off or I will leave behind. Walmart also sells a couple of different variations of folding wagons and carts for a relatively low price.

With the back seat of my pickup folded up, my two bags, gun case, folding cart and case of emergency water all stack and fit neatly into an area that covers a bit less than half the floor space on the back passenger side. This leaves plenty of room for bags containing all of my clothing and other luggage. In the back of my pickup is the auxiliary fuel tank, a large toolbox and a large cooler containing other drinks and more water. I carry a variety of tools and different items.

While this volume of stuff may not be an option for everyone, hopefully, I have at least given someone a few things to think about. I am under no illusions that potentially packing my equipment hundreds of miles in a modified jogging stroller will be easy. My plans aren’t perfect, but for my specific needs and career in the pipeline industry, where the only thing that’s for sure is that nothing is for sure, this works for me. My preparations, whether while traveling or my stockpiles at home are ever-changing. It’s an ongoing process of stocking and restocking and figuring out ways to better prepare myself, my family and those around me. The world around us is dynamic, our preparations, as well as our mindset should be too!

However you prepare, don’t become so rigid in it that you can’t redirect and move in another direction if needed.

This is a guest post by Derek Hayes.

Preppers Emergency Carry

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]]> https://www.edthatmatters.com/preppers-emergency-carry/feed/ 6 Survival Skills: Learning from Insurgent Tactics https://www.edthatmatters.com/survival-skills/ https://www.edthatmatters.com/survival-skills/#comments Sun, 06 Oct 2019 22:24:38 +0000 https://www.edthatmatters.com/?p=34150   For those that like to maintain a state of readiness to deal with uncertain times, it’s important to maintain a steady, regular supply of clean water, food, first aid, tools and survival skills. If you’ve ever watched the show “Doomsday Preppers”, you’ll likely see that there are quite a few people who have their own ideas about how to survive a catastrophic scenario – aka SHTF. One thing you may notice from that show, as well, is many rely on static compounds. While that is one strategy, we’re going to explore another. There are a few life lessons we

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Survival Skills

 

For those that like to maintain a state of readiness to deal with uncertain times, it’s important to maintain a steady, regular supply of clean water, food, first aid, tools and survival skills. If you’ve ever watched the show “Doomsday Preppers”, you’ll likely see that there are quite a few people who have their own ideas about how to survive a catastrophic scenario – aka SHTF. One thing you may notice from that show, as well, is many rely on static compounds.

While that is one strategy, we’re going to explore another.

There are a few life lessons we can take to heart from none other than watching how insurgents evaded NATO and US forces in Afghanistan.

Survival Skills – Lessons from Insurgent Tactics

There’s not too much to love about the Taliban. This article is NOT advocating them in any way, shape or form. Ruthless, cunning, and deceptive, they have managed to survive and thwart efforts to be stamped out by US forces throughout more than ten years of active pursuit.

The best military in the world could never, even at their height, completely eliminate their activity. How did the Taliban and their allies manage to evade capture so well?

“Strategically Placed Supply Caches – A Survival Skill to Learn”

No man can survive for more than three to four days without fresh water. Nor can he fight without ammunition or some form of food.

Taliban Survival Skills - Cache

Photo by Spc. Justin Young – “The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement.”

 

When US forces discovered these caches, they would often either destroy in place or attempt to collect intelligence from them. But one thing was extremely apparent – the Taliban never put all their eggs in one basket. And if you’re developing plans to survive in the event of a disaster, neither should you.

Castles Fall, Plans Change, and Survivors Move Fast

Unless you personally have a small army with its own independent supply of ammunition and arms, you can never assume any defensive fortification you hold – be it home, improvised structure, or bedrock-built castle – will hold for any length of time.

Why?  Because you need to sleep.  Outside of water, the only thing human beings can’t do without for three to four days is sleep.

More importantly, your survival skills in a true survival situation are:

  • evacuating to a safer location.
  • ensuring that fresh supplies are available to rebuild.
  • assuring catastrophic loses to your pursuers.

Iron-reinforced walls, embankments, brick and mortar fortifications, sandbags, and overlapping fields of fire are all very well and good.  But, again, without personnel to man those walls – the only purpose of them is to delay and resist an enemy advancing upon you.

Good News – Survival IS Cheap; Obtaining Survival Skills are Too!

Vietnam Survival Skills

*”Vietnam War 1968 – Urges” by manhhai is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Historically, take a look at any military force that has had to resist a much stronger, better-equipped one.

Whether it be the North Vietnamese in 1967 or the Taliban in 2007 or the Sinoloa Cartel in Northern Mexico, the same core principles always apply.

  • Stay light
  • Stay fast
  • Never put all your eggs in one basket

You don’t need multi-million dollar complexes, advanced sensor technology, or even the best arms and munitions to pull this off.  You just need to understand your needs, your family’s needs, and not be afraid to put in plenty of sweat capital.

Here’s what all three guerilla forces employed as their main modes of movement for short distances: tunnels, caches, and spider holes.

Tunnels, Caches, and Spider Holes

The tunnels only need to be big enough to crawl through and they’re only meant to get you from one position to another without being harassed.  Reinforce with wood or, ideally, non-corrosive materials.

Spider holes are also another survival skill that is great for keeping you and some supplies off the beaten path.  They can sometimes even store more than just you for really short amounts of time.

Never put more into a spider hole than you’re willing to lose.  Always mark the location in some distinct way that only you would identify and understand.

 

 

Caches can be big or small stores of essential emergency items such as medical supplies, food, water, tools, and ammunition.  They can double as short-term safe houses or spider holes. The basic rule of thumb: the bigger the cache, the more you have to haul.

Plan multiple routes and place caches along those routes.  If you take Route A versus Route B, you may have the opportunity to double back and collect some of those items.  In a survival situation, whenever it is feasible to take all supplies with you and leave nothing behind – that’s what you should do.  Don’t leave anything behind to help your pursuers.

Seal food, water, and ammunition in plastic and, ideally, metal containers.  Apply light squirts of vinegar across the exterior of the container to mask your individual smell.

I have found a 2-liter plastic soda bottle that is just the right size to fit inside one of my standard caching tubes so I always make the center tube of the cache (the one that I hopefully find first) my drinking water cache. If you shop around you will find that you can locate cans just the right size to fit your caching tubes. This, of course, assumes that you want to cache over the counter foods in cans and plan on rotating your stores on a regular basis. There is a lot to be said for emergency rations being the same foods you are used to eating in a non-emergency situation. There is no “shock” to your digestive tract (nobody needs a case of diarrhea or constipation at a time like this ) by eating all freeze-dried trail food (or other emergency rations) all of a sudden instead of your normal diet. You can also cache items that are not your ordinary emergency foods in caches, such as canned meats, chicken, fish, etc. if using and rotating standard canned foods. This will help you plan and keep a balanced diet. SOURCE – Your Survival Cache Pt. 3

And remember: survival in an SHTF situation depends more on mobility than it does on fortification.  No fortification lasts forever and no one can run forever. Find the perfect balance!

 

About the Author: Bobby Norman is an avid blogger with particular interests in guns and shooting.

 

Cache

*“Vietnam War 1968 – Urges”by manhhai is licensed under CC BY 2.0

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]]> https://www.edthatmatters.com/survival-skills/feed/ 2 An Alternative Power Source for Preppers https://www.edthatmatters.com/an-alternative-power-source-for-preppers/ https://www.edthatmatters.com/an-alternative-power-source-for-preppers/#comments Thu, 03 Oct 2019 01:00:22 +0000 https://www.edthatmatters.com/?p=34136   Unless you’re sleeping, being in the dark is never fun!  This multiplies when you have a family and especially young children who are scared of the dark.  Then, throw in an emergency situation (insert one here) and you have a recipe for frustration, anxiety, and uncertainty.  Times like these is when having an alternative power source is a game-changer. Many at this point will think of gas or even a dual-fuel generator.  But what do you do when the fuel runs out?  What if you could have an alternative power source that was fueled by a renewable resource: the

The post An Alternative Power Source for Preppers appeared first on Ed That Matters.

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Unless you’re sleeping, being in the dark is never fun!  This multiplies when you have a family and especially young children who are scared of the dark.  Then, throw in an emergency situation (insert one here) and you have a recipe for frustration, anxiety, and uncertainty.  Times like these is when having an alternative power source is a game-changer.

Many at this point will think of gas or even a dual-fuel generator.  But what do you do when the fuel runs out?  What if you could have an alternative power source that was fueled by a renewable resource: the sun?  For preppers and non-preppers alike, the EcoFlow River and its big brother, the EcoFlow Delta are strong considerations when it comes to providing power for your home, outing or emergency situation when you need it!

The EcoFlow River is a powerful alternative power source that allows you to power up to 9 devices at one time.  The huge battery and display allows you to power many devices while knowing how long the battery can actually power the device.  This is great because it takes all calculations and guessing out of the situation and provides a display that even a Third-grader can understand!

To give you an example of what the EcoFlow River can do as an alternative power source, here is a list of some items it can power and for how long.

Communication Devices

  • Phone(10 Wh): 37+ Times
  • Tablet(30 Wh): 12+ Times
  • Laptop(65 Wh): 6+ Times

Recreational Gear

  • GoPro(5 Wh): 74+ Times
  • Camera(16 Wh): 22+ Times
  • Drone(60-70 Wh): 5-6 Times
  • Mini-Fridge(60 W): 6 Hours

Household Appliances

  • Light(100 W): 4+ Hours
  • Fan(18 W): 20+ Hours
  • Wifi Router(12-15 W): 25-31 Hours
  • Electric Drill(100-150 Wh): 3-4 Times
  • CPAP(40 W): 9 Hours

The EcoFlow River is a sleek, lightweight power source that can be charged by an AC outlet, 12v connection or even solar panels.  Having solar panels allows you to charge the River regardless of where you are!

The Ecoflow River can easily charge battery powered tools so you can fix and repair needed items during an emergency situation.  Notice the display.  The River is completely charged at 100%.  The 99 is the number of hours it can charge with the current load, which at this time is nothing.  The 99 basically means that nothing is connected.

 

Here you see the EcoFlow River after completely charging the DeWalt Battery and the USB charged Headlamp.  It is still at 65% and 99 again since both devices are now fully charged.

 

This is the back of the River.  The back has two AC plugs and one 12v plug.  If you are using the River,’s AC plugs you have to push the button to activate the backside of the battery.  The front has USB and USB-C slots.

 

Charging the EcoFlow River off the grid is easy with the 85w solar panels.

 

The River fits behind the solar panels to shield it from the sun and elements when it is charging.

 

 

 

 

For more information about the EcoFlow River and solar panels, visit the EcoFlow website – CLICK HERE.

 

But the EcoFlow River is not the only alternative power source you should consider!  EcoFlow has just released the bigger, more powerful version called the Delta.  They have recently debuted the Delta on KICKSTARTER and it was fully funded in the first day!  That is a true testament to how people feel about what EcoFlow is doing!

 

 

To check out the EcoFlow Delta KICKSTARTER page – CLICK HERE.

 

Peace,
Todd

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]]> https://www.edthatmatters.com/an-alternative-power-source-for-preppers/feed/ 3 Eucalyptus Uses in a Survival Scenario https://www.edthatmatters.com/eucalyptus-uses-in-a-survival-scenario/ https://www.edthatmatters.com/eucalyptus-uses-in-a-survival-scenario/#respond Sun, 29 Sep 2019 18:11:00 +0000 https://www.edthatmatters.com/?p=34119   If you’ve been looking for natural remedies for a host of common ills, you’re going to love eucalyptus. We wouldn’t say that it’s a panacea, but the unique chemical makeup of this tree provides a surprising number of beneficial eucalyptus uses. So, whether you’re setting up a homestead or a bug-out bag, you may find that the common eucalyptus uses are a natural go-to remedy. What is Eucalyptus Originally native to Australia, the oil of the eucalyptus tree offers a host of medicinal and household uses. Most of these are due to the active chemical in its oil: 1,8-cineole

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If you’ve been looking for natural remedies for a host of common ills, you’re going to love eucalyptus. We wouldn’t say that it’s a panacea, but the unique chemical makeup of this tree provides a surprising number of beneficial eucalyptus uses.

So, whether you’re setting up a homestead or a bug-out bag, you may find that the common eucalyptus uses are a natural go-to remedy.

Eucalyptus Survival

What is Eucalyptus

Originally native to Australia, the oil of the eucalyptus tree offers a host of medicinal and household uses. Most of these are due to the active chemical in its oil: 1,8-cineole (eucalyptol).

Eucalyptus found its way to the United States in 1853 as an ornamental plant suitable for the West. Common eucalyptus (E. globulous) is hardy in USDA zones 9 to 11, and it favors warm coastal areas. Its close relative, Silver Dollar Tree, (E. cinerea) is a bit hardier and may grow in zone 8, as well. It boasts the highest level of eucalyptol, over 80 percent.

Medical Eucalyptus Uses

You may have fond memories of your mom rubbing Vicks VapoRub on your chest. That astringent odor comes from eucalyptol, but its benefits aren’t limited to childhood colds. This handy natural oil also has antiseptic, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory effects, too.

General antibacterial and antifungal

Eucalyptus demonstrates powerful anti-bacterial properties, proving effective against several common infections, including E. Coli. Because of its high content of eucalyptol and its ease of availability, it makes an excellent home-made anti-bacterial salve for wounds. And with impressive anti-fungal action as well, eucalyptus is a powerful treatment for candida and superficial fungal infections.

Respiratory infections

Studies show that eucalyptus globulus is effective against a wide range of bacterial strains, include both staph, strep, pneumonia, and influenza. Its cousin, E. cinerea, has also tested effective against several infections, including influenza and pneumonia.

Upper respiratory disorders

Eucalyptus is also effective for a wide range of breathing disorders. It has anti-inflammatory effects that work along with its anti-bacterial action. Inhaling the steam from eucalyptus diffusions has been shown to relieve asthma and even COPD.

To use eucalyptus for respiratory distress or infection, put 1 teaspoon of essential oil into a pot of boiling water for steam inhalation. Alternatively, you can make a salve for your own homemade “vapor rub.”

Dental health

Emergency situations can often mean the loss of life’s niceties. So, if you’ve been missing your dental cleanings, eucalyptus oil can prevent and treat gingivitis and periodontal disease.

Pain relief

Eucalyptus oil works to soothe sore muscles as well as arthritis pain when used as a topical treatment.

You may be familiar with the strong smell of muscle ointments or massage oils for sore muscles. This odor is caused by “Eucalyptamint,” a powerful combination of eucalyptus and peppermint oils.

This combination works to increase blood flow to sore muscles and stiff joints, proven in a placebo-controlled study.

Field Eucalyptus Uses

Whether you’re out in the woods or out in the garden, eucalyptus offers powerful deterrents against insects

Common Eucalyptus (E. globulus) is an excellent fumigation agent against common houseflies and their larvae. And although it isn’t as long-lasting as some essential oils, it will provide short term relief from mosquitoes.

It’s also effective against head lice. And in cases of infestation, it’s also quite effective against scabies.

Household Eucalyptus Uses

As an antibacterial, eucalyptus makes a great disinfectant for household surfaces, including bathing areas and food prep surfaces, when diluted in water as a cleaning agent.

Homestead Eucalyptus Uses

The antibacterial and anti-fungal effects of eucalyptus have been tested in several ways that may benefit homesteaders.

A 2014 study showed it can help preserve fruit juice by retarding the growth of yeast.

And several studies found that adding essential oils of eucalyptus (and peppermint) improved both the health and production of egg-laying hens. The polyphenols in eucalyptus leaves also improved meat quality.

You can also use this potent plant as an herbicide. Water extracts of E. globulus show promise as a pre-emergent herbicide to help keep garden beds clear of weeds.

Eucalyptus trees are quite flammable, and its volatility makes it an excellent biofuel for heating and cooking. Note that it has an allopathic effect on other crops, so plan accordingly.

How to Source Eucalyptus

Most specimens you’ll find will be part of someone’s landscaping. You may find it on public lands such as national parks. However, foraging is generally prohibited on public lands.

If you live in zones 8 to 11, however, you may want to grow your own. In colder climates, you can grow your own eucalyptus in a container and bring it inside during the winter.

Eucalyptus prefers warmth and full sun, and they make an attractive and useful plant on any property. You can use both leaves and bark to extract the essential oil.

 

eucalyptus essential oil

Extracting eucalyptus oil

Generally, people use steam extraction, but one simple way to extract the essential oil from eucalyptus is with a slow-cooker.

Harvest branches with leaves and wash them. Then, let them air dry. Once dried, use a quarter-cup of leaves to one cup of “carrier oil.” While any vegetable oil works, grapeseed oil provides a cleaner product.

Remove the leaves from the branches and crush them. Add the crushed leaves and your carrier oil of choice to a slow-cooker. Set the cooker to low and let steep for a minimum of six hours. The longer they simmer, the stronger the oil.

Once finished, allow the oil to cool and then strain into a dark glass jar. Make sure your jar has been sanitized and is free from any dirt or moisture.

Some Cautions

Although generally regarded as safe, some people have violent allergic reactions to it. These include trouble breathing, rapid heart rate, and more.

Don’t ever consume eucalyptus oil or plant materials, which can be quite toxic to humans. And to apply eucalyptus oil to the skin, start with just a few drops in a carrier oil.

Using Herbal Remedies

Although modern medicine has a lot to offer, there are many home remedies you can make. Making your own medicine means self-reliance under all circumstances. And in a survival situation, there may be no drug store for cold medicine or muscle rub. Knowing that a simple bottle of eucalyptus oil replaces a wide variety of over-the-counter products comes as a huge relief.

Growing and compounding your own herbal medicines is one way to take charge of your and your family’s health, no matter life brings.

CLICK HERE to Download this article as a PDF!

For  Further Reading

A Natural Alternative to ADHD Meds or Help in Living with a Firecracker!

 

This is a guest postBen is a contributor for Ideahacks.com. Ideahacks is dedicated to connecting readers with natural solutions for everyday problems.

 

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]]> https://www.edthatmatters.com/eucalyptus-uses-in-a-survival-scenario/feed/ 0 Beginner Tips: 3 Parts to Focus On When Cleaning an AR-15 https://www.edthatmatters.com/cleaning-an-ar-15/ https://www.edthatmatters.com/cleaning-an-ar-15/#respond Wed, 18 Sep 2019 02:04:56 +0000 https://www.edthatmatters.com/?p=34107   With great arms come great cleaning responsibility. Having an AR-15 is like having a good old sewing machine. Once you disassemble an AR-15, you’ll find that every piece has a purpose, even the stock assembly parts. This is good because you should know what goes into cleaning an AR-15 Cleaning your rifle right after use is essential. It helps you keep it in tip-top shape and maintain its gunk-free, pristine functionality. There’s no exact method to do it; it’s all a matter of preference. As there is no single way of cleaning a rifle, some would go with basic

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Cleaning an AR-15

 

With great arms come great cleaning responsibility. Having an AR-15 is like having a good old sewing machine. Once you disassemble an AR-15, you’ll find that every piece has a purpose, even the stock assembly parts. This is good because you should know what goes into cleaning an AR-15

Cleaning your rifle right after use is essential. It helps you keep it in tip-top shape and maintain its gunk-free, pristine functionality. There’s no exact method to do it; it’s all a matter of preference.

As there is no single way of cleaning a rifle, some would go with basic cleaning by adding lube over and over as a way to clean their AR-15. But if you’d like to reach the deeper end and make sure the insides are gunk-free, you can go by with light cleaning and moderate oil.

can of gun cleanerYour basic cleaning kit should include:

  • Q-tips
  • Bore snakes
  • Oil
  • Microfiber rug
  • Gun cleaner

If you’re new to AR-15 cleaning but prefer the old way of comparing notes with fellow firearms owners and finding out what works best for them, then you’ve come to the right page.

Prepping to Clean An AR-15

Before you start disassembling your gun, start with a few safety measures. At home, the best place to clean your rifle would be somewhere you won’t be interrupted; the basement or garage should do. Bring out a large table, where you can layout all the disassembled parts of the rifle, and cover it with a cloth or a mat.

 

 

Put on an all-purpose glove before detaching the parts. Remove the rifle’s magazine. Pull the charging handle to eject live rounds, lock bolt to the rear, check the chamber and magazine. See if there is any ammunition left inside. If there is, make sure to remove it carefully. Once removed, pull the charging pin and let it go.

Turn the selector switch of your rifle to safe mode. When you’ve done that, you may disassemble the rifle piece by piece and start cleaning. For this cleaning exercise, the parts to focus on include the carrier assembly, the chamber, and the external surface.

Start by Separating the Receivers

 

AR-15 Field Strip

 

Separate the upper and lower receivers of your rifle first by finding the two pins holding them in place.

You’ll find the first takedown pin near the rear part. It should be the one right above the selector switch. Using a flat-pointed peep tool, push down the pin to depress it.

The pins are a bit tight, so you may need to tap them out gently. You need to push it in to release the upper receiver from the frame. Once it’s disengaged, it should pivot upward, letting you see the inside of the rejector.

For you to completely take out the upper receiver, you need to do the same with the second pin holding the hinge together. Push in the peep tool once more, and it should disengage and release the upper receiver entirely off the lower receiver. By now, you should be holding two separate rifle parts.

Take Out the Bolt Carrier Assembly

 

AR-15 Bolt

Remove the bolt carrier assembly and charging handle. Both parts should slide out quickly once you’ve separated the receivers. The bolt and the carrier assembly are always the dirtiest after a day of shooting. Unless your gun has been used several times with hundreds of rounds through it, you can go by with cleaning the carrier assembly.

Spray a sufficient amount of gun cleaner on the carrier, and wipe off the dirt using your rug. There’s no need to field strip it any further as you’ll easily spot the amount of dirt on the outside.

But if you do want to take the entire assembly apart, you’ll need extra tools, specifically a punch. Start by pulling out the firing pin retainer. Tilt the assembly, and let the firing-pin fall out of the carrier. It should come right out easily without the pin retainer holding it in place.

Next, turn the bolt cam about 90 degrees toward you, and pull it out with the punch or with your fingers. By then, you should be able to pull the bolt out of the carrier. Separate the carrier assembly parts, and put them on your table as a group. Soak everything with your cleaner. After a few minutes, apply oil on each piece using your Q-tips.

As for carbon buildup, usually, you’ll find it at the back of the bolt. There are several ways to remove them. The easiest is to scrape them off with a Q-tip and reach in.

Some prefer using dental picks, but they’re a bit more expensive. Either way, it takes care of the gunk. To reassemble after cleaning and oiling, follow the same steps in reverse order.

Insert Snake Bore in the Chamber

bore snakeWhile your bolt and carrier assembly are soaking in the cleaner, you can scrub the outer parts, starting with the handguards. Spray some gun cleaner on any black and sticky stuff that you spot on the rifle, and wipe it away. When you’ve gotten rid of the gunk, apply a light coat of oil on them using your Q-tips.

Spray the gun cleaner on the AR-15 barrel and foregrips, and let it soak. Some people like using rod or patches to get inside the chambers. But the easiest way to reach in is by using a bore snake.

Put some cleaner on the front of the snake, and apply oil on the backside. Insert the bore snake at the backside of the barrel, and simply run it through all the way out to the front side. That should take care of the dirt accumulating inside the barrel.

Easy Does It When You’re Cleaning An AR-15

You can do these cleaning tips regularly depending on your gun usage. The great thing about AR-15 rifles is that you can easily detach the parts and disassemble them for cleaning. Even if you upgrade your rifle, later on, you can still follow the same cleaning tips and add a few extra steps here and there to ensure it remains as a well-oiled machine.

Further Reading:

 

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]]> https://www.edthatmatters.com/cleaning-an-ar-15/feed/ 0 Our Crazy World – A Serious Conversation! https://www.edthatmatters.com/crazy-world/ https://www.edthatmatters.com/crazy-world/#comments Fri, 12 Jul 2019 17:35:27 +0000 https://www.edthatmatters.com/?p=2611   Do you feel like you’re living in a crazy world?  I first penned this letter on December 2011.  Back then, I was very concerned about our crazy world and the direction that I saw it going.  The signs have been there for a while.  For those paying attention, looking, researching and reading, you could easily find a myriad of problems that point to how fragile our world, country, state… is.  But now, the problems are glaring and in your face!  You really have to be Mary Poppins to think there isn’t “something” wrong! It seems like our world is

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crazy world

 

Do you feel like you’re living in a crazy world?  I first penned this letter on December 2011.  Back then, I was very concerned about our crazy world and the direction that I saw it going.  The signs have been there for a while.  For those paying attention, looking, researching and reading, you could easily find a myriad of problems that point to how fragile our world, country, state… is.  But now, the problems are glaring and in your face!  You really have to be Mary Poppins to think there isn’t “something” wrong! It seems like our world is going crazy!

From our economy to terrorism, to natural disasters, to deadly viruses, crime and more, you can easily find reasons to be concerned for yourself and your family!

There Are Major Problems in Our Crazy World!

The thing is, many of the problems that can arise because of these issues can be mitigated if you just put a little effort into being prepared.  Many of you won’t though because you are too distracted with “living the dream” and having fun or you just are irresponsible!  Responsibility is a problem in today’s world!  We all want the government or some other entity to come through for us!  And what if they don’t?  Are you willing to have your family staring you in the face, wanting to know what to do because they are in a desperate situation that could have been avoided or not as bad because you weren’t man enough to make some decisions and get off your butt?

People always ask, what if I prepare and nothing happens?  Well I say, that is good!  You don’t really want anything to happen!  Or, you don’t want terrorist to hack the electric grid and be without power for however long!  You don’t want the economy to tank and possibly lose your job!  Neither do you don’t want the drought or an earthquake in California to affect the food supply so much that you forgo buying fruit because it is too expensive!  You don’t want any of that stuff to happen!  But if it does….you want to be ready!

It’s Crazy, So What Should You Do?

Being prepared doesn’t mean you go buy a lot of camo, guns and go out into the woods.  Being prepared or living a prepared lifestyle just means you live responsibility by planning, thinking ahead and putting some things back for a rainy day!  There are so many aspects to it and each family is going to be different!  But failing to plan and prepare is setting your family up to fail!

You will tell that my letter below is a lot “softer” than what I’ve written above!  Back then, I didn’t want to freak people out.  I wanted them to think critically!  But now, I think people need a wake-up call!

After you read the letter below, I would be happy to answer any questions or point you to resources that can explain your question in better detail!

Peace,
Todd
July 2019

An Open Letter to Family & Friends

 

I’m writing this letter because I care about you.  Please take a few minutes to read it and think about what I’m saying.

Why the Letter?

Our lives are crazy and sometimes it seems like we live in a crazy world!  We take care of our family, work, eat, play chauffeur, pay the bills, etc.  When we have a little bit of free time, we like to just veg in front of the TV and watch some brain-numbing pictures flicker across the screen.  We can go at it like this for days, weeks and even months, not knowing what is going on in the world outside our local community and just get by with the talk around the water cooler.

And when we take life in these little chunks, separate blocks of our time and attention, it seems a little bit more manageable.  We move from one task, event, errand, or chore to the other.

The problem is when we look at our lives from a big-picture perspective.  What if our lives, all of a sudden changed?  What if the stress of the day came bearing down at you all at once?  How could this happen?  This can easily happen during an emergency.  I’m not talking about your son just stuffed his GI Joe down the toilet, or the dog is out of food emergency.  I’m talking about the BIG stuff.

The Big Emergency

The BIG emergency is the one that stops you in your tracks.  It can be personal, based in your local community or worldwide.  But it is the one that everything else stops and all resources and energy are put towards it.

The problem is that most people are not prepared for a BIG one.

Prepared?

Are you and your family most people?  Do you have an emergency fund for financial emergencies?  Or, do you have insurance for medical emergencies?  Do you have food and water if there is a food supply/transportation emergency?  What about having another means of cooking and preparing your food if utilities weren’t available?  Do you have first aid supplies and extra medicine on hand?  Can you rely on some basic skills that could help you: fire starting, water purification, gardening, first aid, etc.?

This is the whole reason for my letter.  I want to help you see the importance of being prepared and to start being more self-reliant.  It’s not too hard, but it does take time, planning and effort.  But then again, what would the time, planning and effort that you put in ahead of time be worth in the middle of an emergency?  You’ll be glad you did!

Getting Prepared Action Steps:

Make a planWhat are you preparing for?  What needs to be done?  Don’t look at the magnitude of the plan, that can be overwhelming. Take it in chunks.  In reality, you will never be “prepared.”  You can be “not prepared” or “overly prepared,” but never “perfectly prepared.”  Consider the basics: financial, medical, etc…but also keep in mind your region of the country; hurricanes, tornados, earthquakes, fires, etc…

 

Set goals – When do you want _____ accomplished?

    1. Get a 3 day supply of food.  Then move to a 3 week supply.
    2. Revisit insurance: house, vehicle, medical, life, etc…
    3. Think about home and personal security.
    4. Start an emergency fund – 3-6 months of expenses
    5. Start a garden
    6. Take a class: first-aid, sewing, gardening, firearm, wilderness survival
    7. Watch some videos on Youtube (search preparedness)
    8. Read blogs and articles on “preparedness” and “prepping

 

Get active – go meet your goals!

 

Warning

The world of preparedness/prepping can be an addictive one.  It can suck you in, mess with your emotions and get you seeing are already crazy world in an even crazier way!  It is always best to approach preparedness within community.  You should go it alone only if no one else is willing.  Eventually, they will realize that you were right, even if that is in the midst of a storm.

It’s A Crazy World and It’s Fragile!

It is not in the scope of this letter to discuss all the possible emergency scenarios that you should prepare for.  But outside of regional, natural disasters, it is important to me to briefly mention our global situation.  Things outside our local community have gone from bad to worse!  At first, we might not care about what is going on in some Asian or European country, but the fact is that we are ALL tied into each other now.  What happens over there, affects us over here.

There are many “End of the World as We Know It” type scenarios out there.  One such scenario is an economic collapse.  Someone recently replied to me and said, “Yes, times can get hard, but we have been through it before during the Great Depression.”  The fact is that it is way different this time.  Our country didn’t have the debt that we have now.  And, if for some reason the world loses faith in our government’s ability to pay its debts, we are up the creek.  It really isn’t too far-fetched to imagine this happening if you’ll look into it.  The concern has gone beyond the tin-foil hat people.  Just research it!

Do Something

Please take this letter seriously.  If you prepare and don’t need it, the worst is that you have some food (food costs are going up/buy now at cheaper prices) and other supplies.  But if you ever find you are in a position that you do need it, you and your loved ones will be glad you were prepared!

Peace,
Todd

 

Crazy World

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]]> https://www.edthatmatters.com/crazy-world/feed/ 11 Outlaw Faith: Could Your Church Go Underground? Part 1 https://www.edthatmatters.com/underground-church/ https://www.edthatmatters.com/underground-church/#comments Sat, 06 Jul 2019 16:27:15 +0000 http://www.prepperchurch.com/?p=392   I hate AND love to think that the church in America might have to go underground one day.  It is scary and at the same time, an exhilarating thought.  Some Christians might think I’ve lost my mind, but let me share some thoughts on why I’m suggesting that the “true” church in America might one day be an underground church. But first, is it too hard to think that the church MIGHT have to go underground at some point?  I mean the true church, not the one that is approved, ok’d or will do ANYTHING and EVERYTHING to keep

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Undergrou

 

I hate AND love to think that the church in America might have to go underground one day.  It is scary and at the same time, an exhilarating thought.  Some Christians might think I’ve lost my mind, but let me share some thoughts on why I’m suggesting that the “true” church in America might one day be an underground church.

But first, is it too hard to think that the church MIGHT have to go underground at some point?  I mean the true church, not the one that is approved, ok’d or will do ANYTHING and EVERYTHING to keep their 503(c) status by the government.  I’m talking about the church that will follow the Bible and choose to live for Jesus regardless of what the culture, government or anyone says.  I mean the church that will be the church, even in the face of threats and persecution!  Is it too hard to think that we could be there at some point in the near future?

Can You See It Happening?

It will (is) easy to blame us.  I mean, come on!  We are people who are unbending when it comes to just accepting what everyone (the world) is doing.  Biblical Worldview Christians say no to abortion, homosexuality, etc.., etc.., etc..  We are just not tolerant.  So why would the world want to put up with us?  “Let’s remove these troublemakers and things will be easier,” you can almost hear them say!  It’s happened before in other places in this world, at other times.  And more importantly, Jesus warned about it.

18 “If the world hates you, understand that it hated Me before it hated you. 19 If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own. However, because you are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of it, the world hates you. 20 Remember the word I spoke to you: ‘A slave is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My word, they will also keep yours. 21 But they will do all these things to you on account of My name, because they don’t know the One who sent Me. 22 If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not have sin.  Now they have no excuse for their sin. 23 The one who hates Me also hates My Father. 24 If I had not done the works among them that no one else has done, they would not have sin. Now they have seen and hated both Me and My Father. 25 But this happened so that the statement written in their scripture might be fulfilled: They hated Me for no reason.

 

26 “When the Counselor comes, the One I will send to you from the Father—the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father—He will testify about Me. 27 You also will testify, because you have been with Me from the beginning.

 

John 15:18-27 (HCSB)

What If?  Could Christian’s Accept an Underground Church?

So back to my statement, I hate and love to think that Christians, we, might find ourselves one day having to go underground to meet, fellowship and share God’s Word.

I hate the idea because I know that many Christians won’t be able to make the transition.  Church is done in a “church.”  We drive there every Sunday morning.  It has rows of chairs and children’s church and maybe a cafeteria and a gym.

It would come as a shock that many wouldn’t be able to handle.  As a result, many will lose faith and think that God is dead.  Some will argue that these people were never really Christians to begin with.  Maybe, Maybe not!  I just know that sometimes we have such thoughts and ideas that normalcy bias sets in and we can’t imagine anything else…or meeting together in any other way.

Shaking the Church

I love the idea that churches might have to go underground one day because it will shake the very core of American Christianity!  We have built our faith around a building, great preachers, great music and great amenities (Children’s church, Youth Group, Singles, etc…).  There is nothing wrong with all of this, but it has become more of “this is church” than we come together to worship and serve God!

We have come to expect that we “go to church” to get fed or to grow spiritually.  Christians have come to expect that the pastor needs to be a great speaker, who is energetic, positive and entertaining.  We go to church to “feel” it.  And if we don’t, we go find another one.

Don’t get me wrong.  This isn’t the case for ALL churches in America.  However, I bet I would get more that agree with me than not!

Going underground means that we will have to be more relational.  The church would more than likely meet in homes.  It would be more participatory.  There would probably be more prayer and seeking God.

Relational

Let’s face it, you can walk into many churches today and absent the “Good morning” from the greeters at the door, if your church does that, you don’t have to actually speak to anyone.  A smile and a nod will suffice most of the time.  This is good and bad.  Sometimes you just want to walk in and focus on God.  You might not want social club time!  But most of the time we like to talk to people.  We like to know that we are part of something bigger than ourselves, we want to belong.  Yes, you can always get involved in some aspect of church, they always need volunteers, but some just don’t naturally gravitate to that.

In an underground church or small home church setting, you can’t just get away with showing up and leaving without interacting with others.  And if you don’t show up for some reason, people will know it.  There is usually food and sharing and times of fellowship that you just don’t experience in a large church setting.  You become part of the family, you belong.

Participatory

You’ve probably heard the term “sit and get.”  This is usually the case in churches where the preacher gets up to preach.  There isn’t really a lot of participation, outside of signing some songs.  Yes, you can join a small group and get involved in ministry.  But the main thrust of any church is the Sunday morning service.

Home churches or small groups are just by nature more participatory. Coming together, maybe sitting in a circle, just lends itself to times where people can ask questions and discuss spiritual matters.  As this happens, it becomes easier and easier to share faith with others.  It also allows others to see that they are not in it alone.  The person sitting across the room is going through the same concerns, fears, situations…

Prayer

Prayer in a church setting usually means the pastor or someone is called to the front, given a microphone and says a prayer.  This is usually already set up before the service, again nothing wrong with that.  Some churches allow for prayer at the end of the service.  They will call prayer partners up and you can come up for special prayer.

In a smaller setting, prayer can be spontaneous.  It can take as long as needed.  Those that feel that they should pray, can.  And more importantly, if Christian’s are meeting in an underground church, then there will be plenty of reasons to pray!

Seeking God

In a larger church setting, most of the “spiritual food” is provided by the pastor.  I hate to say it, but many times it is programmed, sermon series based on a given passage are easy and don’t take too much hearing from God. I know, I’ve been there and done that!  There might be more available for members in small groups, but it depends on how the groups are laid out and the focus that the leader wants to share.

In a home church/small group setting, there is still usually someone in charge of providing a message or sermon or the sharing of Scripture.  However, it doesn’t always have to be the same person and the discussion and sharing can always lead it where the Holy Spirit would like it to go.  Again, there is freedom to discuss Scriptures more or pray more or take however long it takes.

Conclusion

The focus of this article is about a time when churches might have to go underground.  In no way am I saying that churches need to do this now or that it is the only way!  I have pastored a home church for many years and I currently pastor a small church that doesn’t meet in a home, so I’m not against small or larger churches.

I do think that churches should really think about this topic.  Certain issues are causing more and more pastors to think about what their churches would look like in a tyrannical government scenario.  Pastors, elders and church officials should be thinking about contingencies so that their members are “looked after” and can continue meeting together in the faith.

In part 2, I will share some specifics, from my years of pastoring a home church, that Christians should think about when considering meeting in small congregational settings.

Peace,
Todd

 

This article was previously posted on Prepper Church.

 

Outlaw Faith

 

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Concealed Carry Options with the ZFI Dolphin Star Concealed Carry Gun Holster Bag https://www.edthatmatters.com/concealed-carry-options/ https://www.edthatmatters.com/concealed-carry-options/#respond Mon, 27 May 2019 21:03:31 +0000 https://www.edthatmatters.com/?p=34033   The ability to conceal carry is something that many in the preparedness and survival community agree on.  How to effectively conceal carry is another topic.  Should you OWB (outside of the waistband), or IWB (inside of the waistband)?  What kind of gun belt should you use?  Which is the best holster and so forth are all questions that the concealed carrier must wrestle with?  Preppers who are researching the best fit for themselves want to have concealed carry options. One other major dilemma that those who are looking to conceal carry might run into is that they might not

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The ability to conceal carry is something that many in the preparedness and survival community agree on.  How to effectively conceal carry is another topic.  Should you OWB (outside of the waistband), or IWB (inside of the waistband)?  What kind of gun belt should you use?  Which is the best holster and so forth are all questions that the concealed carrier must wrestle with?  Preppers who are researching the best fit for themselves want to have concealed carry options.

One other major dilemma that those who are looking to conceal carry might run into is that they might not have the ability to conceal carry at all times.  For example, there are some employers that won’t allow their employees to conceal carry.  And doing so would mean immediate termination.  As a result, the person wanting to carry might struggle with getting used to carrying.  And depending on the type of holster, there will need to be differences in pants size since an IWB holster will require the carrier to wear a bigger size to accommodate the holster.

Another issue in concealed carry determination will be with those who are overweight.  Overweight carriers have another set of issues on top of the issues discussed already.  And although the case can be made that those who are overweight need to lose weight, the desire for concealed carry options still arise.

A Serious Concealed Carry Option

One option that is available is the Marom Dolphin Star Bag Concealed Gun Holster by ZFI Inc.  The Star Bag is a multi-pocket bag that allows you to carry all your most important items, including your gun and extra magazines, along with extra supplies like your wallet, phone, and even first aid supplies.  The Star Bag utilizes a quick release tab that allows you to unzip the flap to gain quick access to your firearm.  ZFI Inc built this tab into both sides of the firearm flap so that the bag becomes ambidextrous to the carrier.

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At under $42, this concealed carry bag is a valid option for those who don’t feel comfortable carrying their firearm on their belt.  The bag comes in black and Ranger green.  You can purchase the Marom Dolphin Star Bag on the ZFI Inc website or on Amazon.

NOTE: I don’t believe that anyone should share real pics of their firearms online.  What you will see below are pics of the Dolphin Star Bag with a plastic pellet gun.

 

Concealed Carry Bag

I’m right-handed, but the Dolphin Star Bag can easily be worn on the left side.

 

Concealed Carry Holster Bag

The Marom Dolphin Star Bag is big enough to hold everything you need, yet small enough to not be a bother when you are going about your day.

 

Conceal Carry Options

The bag has plenty of room to easily access your most important items, like your wallet.

 

Quick Release Buckle System for Conceal Carry

The quick release buckle system allows the carrier to easily access their extra mag while making the flap very secure.

 

Conceal Carry Options for Fat People

Pulling up the flap reveals two pockets; one for an extra mag and another for your phone.

 

Conceal Carry for Overweight People

The huge pocket under the flap provides enough space for first aid supplies or anything else you might want to carry. Pictured: An Israeli bandage, gloves and a flashlight.

 

Concealed Carry Bag

The Dolphin Star Bag is ruggedly constructed and attention to detail shows, even in the pull strings that won’t unravel or easily fall off.

 

Firearm Holster Bag

The bag contains another huge pocket that will allow the carrier to stow away even more items. This would be perfect for other EDC items.

 

Concealed Carry Bag ZFI Inc

The pull tabs allow the carrier to easily access their firearm.

 

Concealed Carry Holster Bag

The Star Bag has two pull tabs so that it can be used by right-handed or left-handed carriers.

 

CCL Holster Options

Your firearm will sit securely in the stretchy, Velcro-secured paddle. This system allows for many different styles and sizes of firearms to be used.

 

Concealed Carry Options - Bag Carry

The firearm paddle can be removed from the Velcro if it needs to be positioned for easier access.

 

Concealed Carry

The bag has a loop in the back.

 

 

Further ReadingFIREARM: First Thing to Do With Your New Pistol and A Short Survey

Peace,
Todd

 

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The post Concealed Carry Options with the ZFI Dolphin Star Concealed Carry Gun Holster Bag appeared first on Ed That Matters.

]]> https://www.edthatmatters.com/concealed-carry-options/feed/ 0 Using A Shed As A Bugout Hut: Being Stealthy, Stocking It and More https://www.edthatmatters.com/bugout-hut/ https://www.edthatmatters.com/bugout-hut/#comments Mon, 27 May 2019 13:47:09 +0000 https://www.edthatmatters.com/?p=34025   Prepper Options When A Bugout Is Necessary   In preparedness, redundancy and options are important.  One area of preparedness where preppers should build in options is in their ability to bug-in or bugout.  Each prepper family is going to be different in their needs.  Preppers who live in the city might believe they need to bug out for their own safety and survival.  Preppers who live in the suburbs or rural locations might prefer to bug-in.  It will all depend on individual circumstances.  But for those who feel they need to bug out, one main issue arises, cost. Preppers

The post Using A Shed As A Bugout Hut: Being Stealthy, Stocking It and More appeared first on Ed That Matters.

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bugout

 

Prepper Options When A Bugout Is Necessary

 

In preparedness, redundancy and options are important.  One area of preparedness where preppers should build in options is in their ability to bug-in or bugout.  Each prepper family is going to be different in their needs. 

Preppers who live in the city might believe they need to bug out for their own safety and survival.  Preppers who live in the suburbs or rural locations might prefer to bug-in.  It will all depend on individual circumstances.  But for those who feel they need to bug out, one main issue arises, cost.

Preppers who feel the need to bugout might feel trapped by not having a place to go.  Having a fully stocked retreat is out of the financial means of many preppers.  After purchasing land, preppers would need to build, develop and then stock their survival shelter.  Again, this could be very costly.  But one option that could save on the cost of a fully operational bugout location could be having a bugout hut instead.

Countering the Bugout Location’s Biggest Problem

One of the biggest problems with having a bugout location is that you’re not living there!  Even the strongest of locks won’t keep someone who has time and desire from getting into your bugout hut. 

If unethical people come across your shelter or bugout hut, they will see it as an opportunity to “procure” your prepper supplies.  This is one reason why you want to hide your bugout hut from anyone who might come across it.  But even if they do find your well-hidden bugout hut, you will want to be stealthy in how you stock your bugout location.

The easiest and best way to do this is to dig down and build a false floor.  Actually, you will be creating, in effect, a root cellar.  This will have many benefits.  Not only will it keep your important supplies hidden, but the further you dig down, the cooler it will be, keeping supplies like food from spoiling in the heat.  The opening to your underground root cellar/bugout hut will need to be covered in a way that won’t be visible to others and it will have to be watertight (something beyond the scope of this article).

Creating A False Picture in Your Bugout Hut

One last, but major step in keeping your bugout hut’s true purpose from unwanted visitors is to help them see that there is nothing of true value in your bugout hut.  You will have to put some thought into it, but you will want to place some items in your bugout hut that you don’t care if they get taken. 

First, don’t give them a light to look around and poke around.  Keep your bugout hut dark and bring your own light when you come.  Next, leave behind some old rakes and worthless gardening tools.  Leave behind some old buckets.  You could throw an old tent that has holes in it in the corner.  You could also place an old broken down camping stove in there too.  They won’t know it doesn’t work until they take it home and try it.  Remember, the idea is that you want them to look inside, poke around and realize there is nothing of value, on the surface that is!

Further ReadingCreating Myth when the SHTF

Stocking Your Bugout Hut

Preparing Your Stash

Having a sizable stash of food and essential supplies is most of what having a prepper shelter is for. You want to make sure that any food you have is ready-to-eat and can last an extended amount of time. You also want to make sure that it is not vulnerable to temperature changes when being stored.

Medical supplies, radios, cooking supplies, and water filtration systems are also items that you want in place and ready to use when needed.

Additionally, rotating your stock is important. Even first aid cream has an expiration date, so be sure to implement a system for restocking and date checking that is easy to use. Whether you use a marker to clearly date everything or some other system, be sure to know what is getting ready to expire and what can last a couple of years.

Canning

Canning is one way to ensure that you have vegetables, fruits, and even meat that is ready to eat should you not have access to a fire, or you are in your bugout hut for a good deal of time.

Food can last for years when canned properly. There are two different techniques for canning: pressure canning and water bath canning. Pressure canning is best for acidic items, while water bath canning can be used for your everyday veggies. Knowing the difference can prevent unwanted bacteria growth and a proper seal.

Even meats can be canned. Be sure to check the recipe on what you want to can, prior to starting, to determine which way to can would be best for what you are storing. Also, be sure to note how long the nutritional value is maintained and food safety dates for eating. The lids of your canned items should be clearly marked with what the item is and the date it was canned. If able, also include a toss out date (although a good canned food can last several years).

Preserving Meat Without Refrigeration

Most bugout huts don’t allow for refrigerator space because the likelihood of having power when you need your shelter is nil and running a generator just to keep a refrigerator going is expensive and a waste of stored fuel; it’s not a vital resource.

The best way to store your meats is by canning (described above), dehydrating it, or smoking it.

Dehydrated meats, like beef jerky, are great sources of protein and iron. It doesn’t lose much of its nutritional value when you dehydrate it and it can last a long time.

Smoked meats are great for keeping short term. If you hunt and catch a small animal, smoking it is an alternative to cooking it over a fire. You still need a fire to create the smoke, but if you have other things you need to cook, you can multi-taste with smoking your meat.

Organization

Knowing where to find what you need is important for a bug out shelter. Using shelving units and totes is a great way to keep your items organized, clean, and dry.

Bug Out Bags When You Need to Bug Out from the Hut

In the event that it is no longer safe to stay in your bug out hut, you will want to have bugout bags ready to go. Items that should be included in a bug out bag are: first aid kits, fire starting tools, a knife (something larger than a pocket knife may be a good choice), extra clothes (clean socks and underwear should never be undervalued), a mummy style sleeping bag, a water bottle with a built-in filter, MRE’s (ready to eat meals) and a compass. Other items can be added, but just remember, whatever you put in the bag may need to be carried for many hours at a time.

Items like a tent may not be something you want to include, to save weight, especially if you are skilled in shelter building. If sleeping under the stars is not something you are up for, or if inclement weather is a concern, there are ultra-lightweight tents that can be purchased.

First Aid Kits

Never undervalue a good first aid kit. When living off the land, you never know what you will encounter and what injuries can take place. Even just having access to ibuprofen or an anti-burn cream are important when you aren’t sure when you might be able to return home.

There are vast varieties of first aid kits. Some are meant more for day packs, with band-aids, tweezers, and an ice pack. Others have splints and cooling/heating blankets in them. Having a variety of first aid inventory should be a must-have component for your bug out hut.

Radios

Hand-cranked radios and ham radios should be included in your bug out shelter. Radios are a great way to get the latest details about what is happening in the news and weather forecasts. Hand crank radios are ideal for this, as you don’t need to worry about batteries. Solar radios serve the same purpose; they run off the sun’s energy.

Ham radios, or amateur radios, serve the purpose of communicating with others when phone lines are down. They allow you to talk to those in close proximity or across the globe.

Fuel

Fuel can be used to run small motors or to facilitate in fire starting. You may want to consider having some extra fuel stored. Gasoline does go bad, so you will want to make sure you rotate any fuel stored on a regular basis.

If you have propane tanks on your property, these can be a viable resource. Propane doesn’t expire, as it’s a gas, but you do want to make sure the tanks are full at all times.

Water

Water can be a valuable asset depending on the scenario you face and the amount of time you will be in your bug out hut. While storing water can help for short term stays, it can take up a lot of room. You will need to have a combination of stored water, as well as a filtration and water collection system in place for a longer stay.

Building Your Shelter

If you don’t have a bug out hut, but want to start one, you can make the job less stressful using a garden shed. If you don’t have a shed, you can easily construct one in a weekend using premium DIY shed plans from 3DSHEDPLANS or buy a prefabricated shed at your local hardware store.

Sheds are great for bugout shelters because you can put a lot of items, when well organized, in a small space. Just be sure to leave room for people when planning your hut. If you decide you want to add an underground bunker, a shed is a great surface building to work with.

When you are ready, turn your shed into a bug out shelter. The time invested in building out a proper shelter can be extensive but will be well worth the effort should you need it. Even if you decide to equip your shelter with the minimum of food and outdoor camping essentials, a shed is a great resource to get you started.

This was a guest post by C.F.

 

bugout hut