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Saturday, April 28, 2012

Buying "just add water" meals for food storage is doing a whole series on how to buy food storage.  In the following post, they tell about the different types of food storage that are "already prepared meals", all you have to do is add water.  They have some great information.

How many pounds of food do you need?

Suggested Amounts of Basic Foods for Home Storage Per adult for one year
(From Letter from First Presidency, Jan. 20, 2002)
Grains 400 lbs
Legumes          60 lbs
Powdered Milk         16 lbs
Cooking Oil 10 quarts
Sugar or Honey         60 lbs
Salt           8 lbs
Water (2 weeks) 14 gallons
This provides 2200 calories per day and 45 grams of protein daily.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Tortellini Soup from Three-Month's Supply

Our ward members are still concentrating this month on planning and acquiring our three-month's supply of food.  I really love this woman's website:  She makes complete recipes out of shelf-stable ingredients, and publishes the recipe and step by step photos.

This recipe is Tortellini Soup made from shelf stable ingredients.


Please look at all her past recipes too, she has a BUNCH of really good recipes on there.  No one should say that our 3-months supplies have to taste bad.  She has proven that these dishes can be fabulous.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Tarps for camping and shelter

Monte K. sent me this information about a great deal on some essential camping equipment.  My husband has some similar to this (the brand name on his is Noah's Tarps), and he uses them all the time to cover the picnic table or cover the gear at his campsite.

Monte said:

I saw a couple great deals on tarps similar to "Noahs" tarps  - these are about 1/3 of the brand name ones and are excellent quality

Nice big one here  14x11.5 (With Poles):  The brand  is Guide Gear Emergency Shelter. 

2 sizes here  11x11 and 8.5x8.5 (not with Poles).  The brand  is Guide Gear Tarp. 

No camping/emergency kit should go without a couple of these.   (I use my 2 11x11s all the time.)

So if you are looking for camping equipment, you might want to buy some of these while they are on sale.
Guide Gear Emergency Shelter, includes poles.

Food Storage Mistakes made by beginners

Here are the most common mistakes made by people who are just starting out.  Things like storing food your family does not like, or using the wrong storage containers.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

"Food Storage" by Featherstone, May 1976, Part 2

Here is the second half of Bishop Featherstone's talk:

The Lord will make it possible, if we make a firm commitment, for every Latter-day Saint family to have a year’s supply of food reserves by April 1977. All we have to do is to decide, commit to do it, and then keep the commitment. Miracles will take place; the way will be opened, and next April we will have our storage areas filled. We will prove through our actions our willingness to follow our beloved prophet and the Brethren, which will bring security to us and our families.

Now regarding home production: Raise animals where means and local laws permit. Plant fruit trees, grapevines, berry bushes, and vegetables. You will provide food for your family, much of which can be eaten fresh. Other food you grow can be preserved and included as part of your home storage. Wherever possible, produce your nonfood necessities of life. Sew and mend your own clothing. Make or build needed items. I might also add, beautify, repair, and maintain all of your property.

Home production of food and nonfood items is a way to stretch your income and to increase your skills and talents. It is a way to teach your family to be self-sufficient. Our children are provided with much needed opportunities to learn the fundamentals of work, industry, and thrift. President Romney has said, “We will see the day when we will live on what we produce.” (Conference Reports, April 1975, p. 165.)

I should like to address a few remarks to those who ask, “Do I share with my neighbors who have not followed the counsel? And what about the nonmembers who do not have a year’s supply? Do we have to share with them?” No, we don’t have to share—we get to share! Let us not be concerned about silly thoughts of whether we would share or not. Of course we would share! What would Jesus do? I could not possibly eat food and see my neighbors starving. And if you starve to death after sharing, “greater love hath no man than this …” (John 15:13.)

Now what about those who would plunder and break in and take that which we have stored for our families’ needs? Don’t give this one more idle thought. There is a God in heaven whom we have obeyed. Do you suppose he would abandon those who have kept his commandments? He said, “If ye are prepared, ye need not fear.” (D&C 38:30.) Prepare, O men of Zion, and fear not. Let Zion put on her beautiful garments. Let us put on the full armor of God. Let us be pure in heart, love mercy, be just, and stand in holy places. Commit to have a year’s supply of food by April 1977.

Bishops and stake presidents, let us accept the challenge on behalf of the Saints in our wards and stakes. It will prove to be a very Christlike deed on your part. Follow through and check up one year from now and make certain we achieve results.

In his October 1973 conference address, President Ezra Taft Benson gave some excellent instructions about home storage:

“For the righteous the gospel provides a warning before a calamity, a program for the crises, a refuge for each disaster. …

“The Lord has warned us of famines, but the righteous will have listened to prophets and stored at least a year’s supply of survival food. …

“Brethren and sisters, I know that this welfare program is inspired of God. I have witnessed with my own eyes the ravages of hunger and destitution as, under the direction of the president of the Church, I spent a year in war-torn Europe at the close of World War II, without my family, distributing food, clothing, and bedding to our needy members. I have looked into the sunken eyes of Saints, in almost the last stages of starvation. I have seen faithful mothers carrying their children, three and four years of age, who were unable to walk because of malnutrition. I have seen a hungry woman turn down food for a spool of thread. I have seen grown men weep as they ran their hands through the wheat and beans sent to them from Zion—America.

“Thanks be to God for a prophet, for this inspired program, and for Saints who so managed their stewardship that they could provide for their own and still share with others.” (“Prepare Ye,” Ensign, Jan. 1974, pp. 69, 81–82.)

I bear my humble witness to you that the great God of heaven will open doors and means in a way we never would have supposed to help all those who truly want to get their year’s supply. I know we will have time and money if we will commit and keep the commitment. In the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

"Food Storage" by Featherstone, May 1976, Part 1

This is one of the most quoted Conference talks about food storage. Here is the first half of Bishop Featherstone's talk:

I suggest that one year from today we ought to have a year’s supply of food... Now here are some suggestions how:

1. Follow the prophet. He has counseled us to plant a garden and fruit trees. This year don’t just think about it—do it. Grow all the food you possibly can. Also remember to buy a year’s supply of garden seeds so that, in case of a shortage, you will have them for the following spring. I’m going to tell you where to get the money for all the things I’m going to suggest.

2. Find someone who sells large bulk of grains, depending on your locale. Make arrangements to buy a ton or so of grain.

3. Find someone who sells honey in large containers and make arrangements to buy what you can afford on a regular basis or buy a little additional sugar each time you go to the store.

4. Purchase dry milk from the store or dairy, on a systematic basis.

5. Buy a case of salt the next time you go to the store. In most areas, 24 one-pound packages will cost you less than $5.

6. Store enough water for each member of your family to last for at least two weeks....

Now you ask, “Where do I get the money for these things?.....”

Here is how you do it.

1. Decide as a family this year that 25 or 50 percent of your Christmas will be spent on a year’s supply. Many families in the Church spend considerable sums of money for Christmas. Half or part of these Christmas monies will go a long way toward purchasing the basics. I recall the Scotsman who went to the doctor and had an X-ray taken of his chest. Then he had the X-ray gift-wrapped and gave it to his wife for their anniversary. He couldn’t afford a gift, but he wanted her to know his heart was in the right place. Brethren, give your wife a year’s supply of wheat for Christmas, and she’ll know your heart is in the right place.

2. When you desire new clothes, don’t buy them. Repair and mend and make your present wardrobe last a few months longer. Use that money for the food basics. Make all of your nonfood necessities that you feasibly can, such as furniture and clothing.

3. Cut the amount of money you spend on recreation by 50 percent. Do fun things that do not require money outlay but make more lasting impressions on your children.

4. Decide as a family that there will be no vacation or holiday next year unless you have your year’s supply. Many Church members could buy a full year’s supply of the basics from what they would save by not taking a vacation. Take the vacation time and work on a family garden. Be together, and it can be just as much fun.

5. If you haven’t a year’s supply yet and you do have boats, snowmobiles, campers, or other luxury possessions, sell or trade one or two or more of them and get your year’s supply.

6. Watch advertised specials in the grocery stores and pick up extra supplies of those items that are of exceptional value.

7. Change the mix in your family’s diet. Get your protein from sources less expensive than meat. The grocery bill is one bill that can be cut. Every time you enter the store and feel tempted by effective and honest merchandising to buy cookies, candy, ice cream, non-food items, or magazines—don’t! Think carefully; buy only the essentials. Then figure what you have saved and spend it on powdered milk, sugar, honey, salt, or grain.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Canning pork

Pork is one of the easiest meats to can, because a pork loin roast is such a perfect shape.

I just cut a section of the raw pork loin off, and stick it down inside the jar, trying to fill the whole jar, within about a 1/2" of the top.  (Beef and chicken are harder to do, because you have to cut up the meat and fit it like putting puzzle pieces together.  The pork just needs to be cut off and stuck in the can.  Easy!)

Add 1/2 teaspoon of canning salt (non-iodized). Wipe off the rim.  Put on the lid/ ring.

Bring it up to pressure inside the pressure canner, and cook it for 75 minutes on 10 pounds of pressure.  (Please review the rules for pressure canning in the instruction book for your pressure canner.)

Our favorite way to use it:  Just open the bottle, shred up the meat, and put barbecue sauce on it for pork barbecue.  Serve on hamburger buns.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Easy food for Two Weeks

As part of your Three-Month's supply, you might want to have two weeks of VERY EASY TO PREPARE  foods.

We are very vulnerable to hurricanes and ice storms in this area. For the first 3 days or 4 days after a major disaster you will be totally on your own, and probably without electricity. Either evacuating to somewhere else, or sheltering in place.

Prepare to have every necessity of life, especially water. Plan to do no cooking or minimal cooking. (And remember, without power you will probably be warming up these foods over a campstove.)

We are so blessed to have grocery stores filled with convenience foods.  I recommend the same types of food my sons take on a backpacking or camping trip, or that my husband takes as a lunch to work. These will cost some money, but you don’t want to be messing with lots of ingredients and preparations when dealing with a disaster.

All of these items are SHELF STABLE, which means they do not need refrigeration.  (You probably won't have any refrigerator or freezer during a disaster.)

 The "Annie Chun" noodle bowl was on sale for $2.

 These Hormel main dishes were on sale for $1.85 each.

The Dinty Moore Stew was about $3.85.

(As you can see, I have stored some other ingredients which will make the meals more complete.)

You could argue that these convenience foods are highly processed, and aren't as healthy as homemade.  Oh, well, in times of emergency they will definitely keep you alive. 

I also have lots of lemonade and koolaid and chocolate milk to make the stored water or powdered milk taste better.

These foods would be counted in with your three month's supply.  They are definitely not something that would store for many years, you are going to have to rotate them quite frequently.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Easter chocolate 75% off, Use in baking

The Easter candy at the Davis Drive/Morrisville Carpenter Road Walgreen's is 75% off.  There was a lot of it there this morning.  I did the math, the Palmers big chocolate bunnies were 8 oz. for 57 cents, that is 7 cents per ounce.  Just buy it, take it home, and chop it up to use as chocolate chips in your cookies.

I have been chopping them up and putting them in canning jars, and using a Foodsaver Vacuum sealer to seal them.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

A Plan for Buying 3-mos Supply All at Once made a plan for the person who gets a big wad of cash and wants to buy their three month's supply of food all at one time.

Here are some helpful hints for doing that (if you have a great big hunk of money right now.)

Monday, April 16, 2012

Fats, Oils, Butter and Margarine Substitutes

In most food storage calculations, an adult needs at least 20 lbs. of fats/oils per year.  Some items store longer than others.  I wanted to point out some options.

If you have a major disaster, and don't have power for weeks, your butter and margarine will be used up or they will be spoiled.  So you need to have something in your longer term storage which can be used instead.

Here are some fats and oils to store in your long term food storage, which will keep longer than regular butter and margarine.

Vegetable oil.  This bottle was purchased in 2008, it is labelled "purchase by March 2009", and I am using it in July 2012.  I don't know how long you can store oil, but obviously four years is still okay.  Oil has a shorter storage life than shortening.

"Red Feather" brand canned butter from New Zealand.  Purchased in 2009.  I opened one can in 2011, and it was fabulous.  It was just regular butter in a can.  So I am choosing not to open any more for another couple of years.  I trust it will still be fine.   Note:  This was a little pricey when I bought it in 2009, and now I have heard it has gone up a lot more.  I will consider it a luxury item if and when I have to live off my food storage.

Crisco Baking Sticks. No refrigeration necessary.  These are cheaper than butter, but can be used in place of butter in cooking or baking.  It is not suggested to use these as a spread on toast, that doesn't taste good.  I bought these in 2011, and they are labelled "best if used by March 2013" so I guess they last longer than two years.  I have been using them, and they are still good.

(These come in packages of three one-cup sticks, so don't make the mistake I did of using one stick for one stick of butter.  That was exactly twice as much as I needed, since one stick of butter is 1/2 cup, not one cup.)

Crisco Shortening.  Wendy Dewitt, a food storage expert, says that Crisco will last ten years, and I am going to take her word for it.  Friends of mine have had bad luck with off brands of shortening going rancid sooner than that, so I am going to only store Crisco brand for my long term food storage.  If you want to be sure to have a one-year's supply of oil, and you are worried you won't rotate your oil fast enough, store extra cans of Crisco.  You can always melt it and use it instead of oil.

Bean Paste.  I learned from to pressure cook dry beans, then blend them up in the blender, and store the bean paste in the freezer.  You can use dark colored bean paste in dark colored baked goods (like chocolate cakes or cookies) and use light colored bean paste in light colored baked goods (like chocolate chip cookies or spice cake).  Just substitute equal parts of bean paste for the shortening or oil called for in the recipe.  (Note:  I have stored mine in 1 cup containers in the freezer, but wish I had stored them in 1/2 cup amounts instead.  1/2 cup of oil is what most of my recipes call for, so sometimes I have had to throw the rest away.)

Applesauce.  Before I learned about substituting bean paste, I learned to substitute applesauce for oils in baked goods.  I have a great pumpkin bread recipe, which called for 1/2 cup of oil.  Many years ago I quit using oil, and began using 1/2 cup of applesauce instead, and the pumpkin bread turns out fabulous.  I have been substituting applesauce in brownies and cakes for years.  (Note:  I have also discovered that dehydrated applesauce powder makes perfect applesauce.  So I have stored a lot of cans of applesauce powder to make the applesauce with.)

I'm sorry I don't have any butter powder or margarine powder, or I would tell you about those.  I am planning to buy some soon and start using them.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

How long does it take to use up a #10 can at your house?

Today I finally got to the bottom of my #10 can of powdered eggs.  I use powdered eggs all the time for baking, I only use fresh eggs for doing scrambled eggs, etc.  It is interesting to keep track of how long a food storage item lasts.  I have started writing when I opened the can on the outside of each can.  This one took 9 months to use up.

This was a couple of cans ago.

I can see on my can of powdered milk (that I use for all my baking, but I never use it for drinking) that it only takes us about 3 months to use it all.

This information helps me to know how many cans of powdered eggs and powdered milk to have in storage.  

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Reminders: The April challenge, I'm giving classes on Food Storage

Our April Ward Challenge is: 
“Learn about Food Storage, and Plan Menus using your Family's Favorite Foods.  Begin buying food from your plan.”
Each family will plan a three month's supply of food.
Each family will begin obtaining a three month's supply of food.
Each family will learn the importance of obtaining their one year's supply.
Read “Family Home Storage: A New Message”,  Ensign March 2009.
Family home evening:  Make a list with your family of all their favorite meals and snacks.  These will become the basis for your three months supply of food.  
Figure out a way to buy all the ingredients for a  few of these meals, to make that meal 13 times (equals once a week for three months.)  Make these purchases over the next few weeks.
Food Storage Classes this month, for members of MV ward and guests
To help you achieve the April goal, I will be offering small group presentations about Food Storage this month   (April 2012).  I have the following dates reserved at our MV building. 
Mornings:  Tuesdays  April 24.  Tentatively 10am-11am unless the attendees want a different time.
Evenings:  Wednesdays, April  18, 25.  Tentatively 7pm-8pm unless the attendees want a different time.
What will I teach?  I will be giving a powerpoint presentation which I originally gave at the March 2011 Stake Women’s Day, called “One Thousand Pages of Food Storage Information in 30 minutes”.  I will be going through the contents of the CD which I will give to the attendees.  The CD contains all the documents you might need to help you plan your food storage.
I am also eager to answer any questions you might have.  Please email me with items you want me to cover in the class, and I will try to bring information geared to your interests.  (If you have already attended this powerpoint presentation, but still want to learn more about food storage, we can arrange something different.)
 If I can get at least three people to attend, I will hold the class.  Couples may attend, or one adult from a family is also welcome.  Please email me if you want to attend.  
If I cancel the class because of no one signing up, I will announce that on the MV RS google group.  Please phone me if you want to attend at the last minute, to see if the class is happening.
Please read this blog .  Almost every day I put up new information about the ward's challenge for that month.

Elder Busche, 1982

Elder F. Enzio Busche was a child in World War II Germany, and suffered through the destruction and lack of food there.  Here are some of the things he said about his family's food storage.

Frequently I am asked, “What were the most valuable items in the days of starvation in Germany? The answer is difficult to believe, because some of the experiences we had seem to be totally illogical and contrary to human nature. The items of highest value were tobacco and alcohol, because people who live in fear and despair, who have not learned principles of self-control, tend to need in times of panic some drug to escape the dreadful awareness of reality. I have seen people give their last loaf of bread and their last meager supply of potatoes just to obtain a bottle of brandy. How fortunate we are as members of the Church that we learn to develop a feeling for the true values of life and the necessity of self-control, so that in times of need there will be no panic, but we will be prepared.

As for what we needed, the food item we relied on most was vegetable oil. With a bottle of vegetable oil, one could acquire nearly every other desirable item. It had such value that with a quart of vegetable oil one could probably trade for three bushels of apples or three hundred pounds of potatoes. Vegetable oil has a high calorie content, is easy to transport, and in cooking can give a tasty flavor to all kinds of food items that one would not normally consider as food—wild flowers, wild plants, and roots from shrubs and trees. For me and my family, a high-quality vegetable oil has the highest priority in our food storage, both in times of daily use and for emergency usage. When vegetable oil is well-packed and stored appropriately, it has a long storage life without the necessity of refrigeration. We found ours to be in very good condition after twenty years of storage, but circumstances may vary in different countries and with different supplies.

The second highest priority item for me and my family is grain in all its forms, preferably wheat and rye. When grain is well-packed and well-preserved, it too is easy to transport, easy to store, and will last for generations.

A third priority item is honeyIts value in daily usage is immeasurable. My family prefers honey rather than sugar because our experience supports some of the research findings regarding the preeminence of honey. Another reason I prefer honey is because during the starvation period in postwar Germany, honey could be traded for three times as much as sugar; its value was considered that much greater.

A fourth important food storage product is powdered milk.

These four basic items—oil, wheat, honey, and milk (or their equivalents in other cultures)—together with water, salt, and renewable basic foods such as potatoes and other vegetables, can satisfy nutritional requirements in times of emergency and also are valuable and usable in normal daily life.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

What the Church's website says

Here is what the church's website has to say about a three-month supply of food.

Emergency Preparedness and Response

Members of the Church have been counseled for many years to be prepared for adversity. Preparation, both spiritual and temporal, can dispel fear. With the guidance of Church leaders, individual members and families should prepare to be self-reliant in times of personal or widespread emergency.

Family Emergency Planning

Church members are encouraged to prepare a simple emergency plan. Items to consider may include:
  • Three-month supply of food that is part of your normal daily diet.
  • Drinking water.
  • Financial reserves.
  • Longer-term supply of basic food items.
  • Medication and first aid supplies.
  • Clothing and bedding.
  • Important documents.
  • Ways to communicate with family following a disaster.

CNN says "Weather disasters striking with more frequency"

I guess its not just me saying this.  But I bet CNN doesn't recognize that these are part of the Signs of the Times.--- Amy

As Weather Gets More Destructive, Insurers Grow Wary

Published: Wednesday, 11 Apr 2012 | 12:02 PM ET
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By: Reuters
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As weather disasters strike with more frequency, homeowners first get hit with the destruction or total loss of property. Then many are hit with the unexpected loss of homeowners insurance policies as insurance companies re-evaluate their financial liabilities....