Friday, September 30, 2011

Weekly Assignments and Food Storage Ideas (Week of October 2nd)

Hi Carson Ward Family, Family and Friends,

Congratulations to Sally Salcido! She won our September FREE Monthly Giveaway Drawing last Sunday. She won a One Burner Butane Stove with two cans of Butane fuel.

This is great to cook on in an emergency situation, or in fact, any time. You can use them in your home, outside, and on camping trips. Make sure you take the stove out of the plastic case before using it and read the instructions. Keep extra cans of Butane fuel on hand. You can purchase the Butane Stove and cans of Butane fuel at Marukai in Gardena (Western and Arestia, there is a $1 annual fee to join) and Torrance (across the street from Toys R Us on Sepulveda Blvd) for about $13.00 and the fuel for about $1.25 each.


The only thing you have to fear is not being prepared!

Being prepared both spiritually and temporally for any calamity that might come our way, be it a natural disaster, loss of a job, financial problems, family trials, health and/or emotional issues and so on, will bring us peace of mind. Over and over the scriptures say, "If ye are prepared, ye shall not fear." Let us all strive for preparedness, both spiritual and temporal.

Temporal Assignment:

72 Hour Emergency Food Kit:

Add the follow items to your 72 Hour Emergency Food Kit (Remember, 3 of each item for each family member. Put the snack items in a separate plastic zip lock bag from the regular food items, mark it Snacks.)

Regular food kit--

1) Dry soup mix (chicken noodle, onion, etc. Usually comes two packages in a box, you will need 3 packages per family member.)


1) Beef Jerky (package or long stick)
2) Fruit snacks (like Fruit Roll ups, dried fruits, etc.)

Note: I put these snack items in a separate plastic zip lock bag marked "Snacks". We will be adding two other items next week. If you have mint flavored candy or gum, you want to keep it from the rest of your regular food, or everything will taste minty.

So far you should have the following items in your Food and Snack Kit:

Granola bars
Juice Box Drink or Fruit Drink mix
Instant hot chocolate drink mix
Small box of raisins
Instant Oatmeal
Fruit cups or Apple Sauce (or some of each)
Dry Soup Mix (chicken noodle, onion, etc)
Peanut Butter crackers or Cheese crackers
Water (at least 2 Liters, remember, water is heavy and you will have to carry it. Only for drinking and instant and dry mixes)
Beef Jerky (package or stick)
Fruit Snacks (Fruit Roll ups or Dried Fruit)

Next week we will finish up the 72 Hour Emergency Food Kit, including the snack items.

Spiritual Assignment:

Read the Book of Mormon--Of the Book of Mormon, Joseph Smith said, "a man would get closer to God by abiding by its precepts, than any other book".

Today I visited one of my Visiting Teaching sister and we talked about the importance of faith and a having a strong testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ in these latter days. That even though difficult times are ahead of us before our Savior's return, having strong faith, a strong testimony and always being in tune with the Spirit, they will help us through these difficults times ahead. Reading the Book of Mormon daily will build our faith, strengthen our testimony and bring us closer to the Spirit.

My Spiritual assignment, if you are not already doing it, follow the Book of Mormon 90 Day Reading Schedule in the back of our Stake Directory starting tomorrow October 1st. If you do not have one, see the schedule below for the first week.

Day Date Page Thru Chapter

1 Oct 1 7 1 Nephi 3
2 Oct 2 12 1 Nephi 6
3 Oct 3 19 1 Nephi 10
4 Oct 4 23 1 Nephi 12
5 Oct 5 30 1 Nephi 14
6 Oct 6 36 1 Nephi 16
7 Oct 7 41 1 Nephi 17
8 Oct 8 48 1 Nephi 20

How to complete this assignment--Carry a paper back Book of Mormon (like the blue ones the Missionaries hand out) with you, read in the morning, during your lunch break at work/school, read at night, while waiting for an appointment, anytime you get an opportunity.

Food Storage Idea:

Vacuum sealing foods (cool technique):

"Many foods with high oil contents cannot be stored in #10 cans because of the interaction with the metal (Chocolate chips, nuts and raisins for example). You can significantly increase the shelf life of your foods by placing them in mason jars and using a Food Saver and a Jar Sealer attachment to vacuum the air out of the jars. Put your ingredients in the jar, put a lid (flat part) on the jar, place the jar sealer attachment over the lid and start the machine. If a jar won't seal, try placing one lid down and one facing up or heating the lid in boiling water. The jar can be opened and resealed over and over. If you take the lids off carefully, they can be reused indefinitely.

You can seal nuts, raisins, chocolate chips, brown rice, cornmeal, candy bars, egg noddles, poppy seeds, dried apricots, malt-o-meal, cookies, granola bars, just about anything in the pantry. Shelf life should be 3 years or more if you keep the foods cool. Remember, the warmer the temperature, the shorter the shelf life.

You cannot vacuum seal foods that need refrigeration..., only foods that sit on your pantry shelves.

Don't vaccum fine powders..., they gum up the works of your machine. If you want ot seal powders, put a plastic or zip lock bag in your jar, fill the bag, express the air, zip lock it, then vacuum seal. "

(From Everything Under the Sun, by Wendy Dewitt)

Do not buy a new Food Saver, they are expensive. I purchased my on ebay for about $20. Make sure it has the port hole on top of the machine where the jar sealer attaches. Jar Sealer attachments come in regular (for small mason jars) and wide mouth (for the larger mason jars). I purchased both the small and large ones on line new, about $6-$7 each. The mason jars can be expensive and sometimes hard to fine, check Walmart, Kmart and other department stores that might carry them.

This is a great way to store the types of food listed above for a longer period of time. I love this technique. Get a group of friends together and vacuum seal your food storage items together.

Remember: Post your name and comment for our next FREE Monthly Giveaway Drawing to be held the 4th Sunday in October, October 30th.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Weekly Assignments and Food Storage Idea (Week of September 25th)

Hi Carson Ward Family, Family and Friends,


"The revelation to produce and store food may be as essential to our temporal welfare today as boarding the ark was to the people in the days of Noah." President Ezra Taft Benson

"We will see the day when we live on what we produce." President Marion G. Romney

I will comment on these two quotes in a little later.

Temporal Assignments:

1. 72 Hour Individual Emergency Food Kit (Please add 3 of each item for each family member and place in the large zip lock plastic bag with the other food items you have purchased. One large zip lock plastic bag for each family member with their name on it. IMPORTANT: If you have any family members with food allergies, substitute any food items they are allergic too, also for the previous items.)

This week add the following:

1) Peanut Butter Crackers (usually come 6 crackers in each package and 6-9 individual packages in each package. I found them at Food 4 Less, Albertson and most grocery stores. Costco and Sam's Club also has them.) Water. IMPORTANT: If a family member is allergic to peanut butter, substitute with cheese crackers.

2) Water- 2 Liter bottle or large, just remember, they will have to carry it. You will need this water for drinking and to add to dry mixes in the 72 Hour Food Kit. This water is not for washing)

2. Temporal Assignment:

Regarding the quotes above, it is so important for us to learn how to and grow our own vegetables, even if it is just a small garden or a garden in planting pots. I truly believe there will come a time when we will need to grow our own vegetables and fruit, either due to the lack of them in the stores, or extremely high prices, possibly both. We should also buy and store extra seeds when they are available in the garden shops or through online companies for future use. They usually keep for about 4 years, rotate them as needed.

Being that we live in California, we are blessing with different growing seasons, spring, summer, fall and even winter gardens.

How is your summer vegetable garden doing? Have you harvested lots of good vegetables and fruit, and froze and/or canned the extra ones? With the cooler weather this year our garden did not do as well as last year, but still gave us plenty of extra vegetables to freeze and can. We still have tomatoes, zucchini, green onions, carrots and pumpkins growing, but they are close to the end of their growing season.

If you did not plant a summer vegetable garden, it is not too late to plant a fall/winter garden! I started some seeds, celery, broccoli and peas, in those container you get from the garden shop that flowers come in and some flower pots I was not using. Celery and broccoli seeds are too small to plant directly into the ground, bugs and ants carry them off or eat them, you have to germinate them in other containers and then transplant them when they are big enough. They usually germinate in about 10 days, celery seeds can take longer, and they have a longer growing time before harvest, about 4 months. Make sure to keep the seeds moist, water lightly each day, until you transplant them. Being sick all last week I was surprised how well they are are doing and how big the peas have gotten. In fact, I could probably leave them in the flower pots I planted them until they produce pea pods, but I will transplant them, along with the celery and broccoli ones. It is best to plant the seeds about every two weeks, that way you have a continuous growth of vegetables and that way they do not all have to be harvested all at once.

If you do not have a large enough place to have a garden in the ground, then consider growing them in large flower pots, my peas have proven that works well.

Google to see what other plants you can plant in our area, you will be amazed what you can still grow until the first frost, which in usually late December or January around here.

Spiritual Assignment:

We just received our Ensign in the mail today. I love the article about "Lehi's Dream" (page 32) and how clinging to the Iron Rod will help us temporally and spiritually when difficult times come our way. This will help us not only be temporally prepared, but spiritually too.

A quote from the article states, "Even with faith, commitment , and the word of God, the second group pressing forward along the strait and narrow path, clinging to the rod of iron, eventually was lost---perhaps because they only periodically read or studied or search the scriptures." I can testify to you of the importance of reading and studying our scriptures daily, if we do, we will have the knowledge, testimony and strength to get through the things to come.

This week, read the article "Lehi's Dream", reach the scriptures about his dream, and discuss as a family or with a friend, how holding onto the Iron Rod will help us both temporally and spiritually when times get tough and seem almost impossible.

Food Storage Ideas:

Salt and Fats and Oils--

Salt, fats and oils are an important part of our food storage.

Salt is one of the easiest food items to store. A years supply for one person is five pounds. Store it in its original container in a dry cool, dark location. It will keep indefinitely. Iodized salt is best as it will help in proper functioning of the thyroid gland. If you use sea salt, also store it.

Fats and Oil--Twenty pounds of fats and oils per person should be stored for one year (1 gallon equals 7 pounds). Most cooking oils and shortenings will store for two to three years if kept in a cool dark, dry location. Olive oil and corn oil are also very good storage oils and have a better flavor then soybean and safflower oils. Fats and oils may be stored int he following forms, cooking oil (vegetable oil), shortening, butter (fresh and dried), margarine or margarine powder, mayonnaise, salad oils and dressings, included mixes. (Magna Utah Center Stake Emergency Preparedness Plan, 1997)

Note: You can also freeze butter or margarine for up to a year. A good plan is, each time your buy butter or margarine, replace it with the frozen ones.

Remember: Post your name and comment at the end of this blog by 10am this Sunday (tomorrow), September 25th, to have your name entered into the FREE Monthly Giveaway Drawing to be held tomorrow.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Weekly Assignments and Food Storage Ideas (Week of September 18th)

Hi Carson Ward Family, Family and Friends,


I have used this quote before, but it best explains what I want to say. It is a Latin Proverb--"While we consider when to begin, it becomes too late." What a bold statement and so true. This month is National Preparedness Month. What a great time to start, if you have not already, or review what you have and need, preparing.

This Family Home Evening, sit down with your family, a friend or just yourself, and review your emergency preparedness supplies and goals. Set up categories like; 3 Month Food Supply and/or Years Food Supply, Water Supply, 72 Individual Emergency Backpack Kits, 72 Hour Emergency Family Bag, Car Kit, Emergency Medical Supplies, Sanitation Supplies, Shelter Supplies, Cooking Supplies, Lighting Supplies, and other Emergency Supplies you feel our family needs to be prepared. See the categories under "Postings" on the right side of this blog and go through them to help you with your "haves" and "needs list".

In each category set up two columns, "What you have" and "What you need". Under "What you have", assess those items and list them (and how much you have). Under "What you need", list them by using the idea above and set goals to purchase them. Make realistic goals, set up an emergency prepared budge/fund, either have a jar you put money into, loose change and dollar bills, or a special Emergency Preparedness savings account at the bank, add to it as often as you can. Put a label on the front of the jar, "Our Emergency Preparedness Plan". When you get a raise, do not think you have more money to buy things you really do not need, but save it and put it into your Emergency Preparedness savings account. When you have enough money, purchase one or more of the items on your list.

This can be an overwhelming task it you only see the whole picture at once. Take small steps and you will be successful! It is all about setting goals, setting up small steps, and before you know it you will have your Emergency Preparedness Plan and Supplies completed! We are reminded, "If you are prepared, ye shall not fear!"

Temporal Assignment (72 Hour Emergency Food Kit):

Add the following, remember, 3 of each item for each family member. Add these items to the last two weeks items, place them in the large plastic zip lock bag for each family member with the other items.

1) Instant Oatmeal
2) Fruit Cups

Spiritual Assignment:

Last week I used a quote from Wendy Dewit, a Food Storage Specialist, "Your spiritual foundation will depend on your food storage!" Have you pondered that statement? When Jesus went to speak to the people on the mountain, what did he do first? He feed them fishes and loaves of bread. He knew that if they were lacking physically (temporally), they would probably not hear him spiritually. It is a known fact by many churches that minister to the poor and needy in other countries and here in the United States, they need to fill their bellies before they will hear their spiritual messages.

My challenge is, start preparing temporally, if you have not already, and being obedient to the counsel of our leaders about being prepared both temporally and spiritually, and the Spirit will be with you continually and bless you and your family.

Food Storage Ideas:

Emergency Water Supply--the most important thing you can store! You can live without food for a month or more, but you can only live without water for a few days.

"The required amount of drinking water per person is two quarts and up to one gallon of water is needed per day, depending on the size of the person, the amount of exertion, weather, and perspiration loss. A minimum of seven gallons pure water per person would be needed for a two-week survival supply. With careful rationing, this amount would be sufficient for drinking, food preparation, brushing teeth, etc. (not bathing). Fourteen gallons per person would allow for hygiene care.

Keep an emergency supply of drinking water in plastic containers. Commercially bottled drinking water is available. It stays pure for months (not years), and has the expiration date clearly marked on it." (Magna Utah Central Stake Emergency Preparedness Plan)

There are several other sources for water in an emergency situation:

First, turn off your water supply to the house at the main water shut-off value located somewhere just outside the house.

1. You can drain the water from your hot water tank, that will five you 30-50 gallons of usable water depending on the size of your tank. You can filter the water using your Sycehelle Water Filtration Pump and drink the water or use for cooking. Without filtering you can use for bathing. Note: You should never use hot water from the tank for cooking during regular times, non emergency situations, due to sediments in the bottom of the tank.

2. You can use clear water from the toilet flush-tank, but not from the bowl.

3. You can melt ice cubes.

4. You can use the water/juice from canned fruits and vegetables, and liquid from other canned foods.

Water storage, containers, purifying water--see the blog under "Postings" on the right, "Water Storage", for more great ideas. has "Aquamarine Chlorine Dioxide Water Treatment" on sale this month for $13.99 (plus $6 shipping). This solution keeps water in a 60 gallon water container, in a properly sealed container, for 5 years. You can also purchase a similar one at Majors Survival Warehouse Store in Gardena for about the same price.

All comments and ideas are more than welcome! We all need to help each other be prepared.

Remember: Post your name and comment at the end of this posting to have your name entered in our FREE Monthly Giveaway Drawing to be held next week, Sunday, September 25th.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Weekly Assignment and Food Storage Ideas (Week of September 11th)

Hi Carson Ward Family, Family and Friends,


"Your spiritual foundation will depend on your food storage!" (Wendy Dewit, Food Storage Specialist)

What would you do if you had no electricity? This is what part of Orange County, San Diego County and all the way to Mexico residents experienced this week. Homes were without electricity, stores and business had to close, you could not get gas due to the pumps do not work without electricity, you could not get money from the ATM machines without electricity, the freeways and roads were jammed due to signal lights and street lights not working.

Ways to prepare for no electricity:

1. Have propane or battery operated (with extra batteries) lanterns available.
2. Have candles and candle holders.
3. Have flashlights with extra batteries.
4. Always carry a small flashlight in your purse or have a small one on your key chain, and keep one in your desk at work so you can see your way out of places. Also store extra batteries.
5. Keep a flashlight with extra batteries in your car. You should have one in your 72 Hour Emergency Family Bag and/or 72 Hour Individual Emergency Kit in your car.
6. Have a small portable generator that will run at least your refrigerator and one light. You will need to keep gas stored in gas cans to run the generator.
7. Keep cash in small bills on hand at home, in your car and in your wallet.
8. Keep a battery operated or solar radio (with extra batteries) for instructions on road conditions and emergency information.

Being prepared ahead of time is the key to any situation you might find yourself in at any time!

Temporal Assignment (we are continuing the 72 Hour Individual Food Kits for your Backpack):

Please add the following (Remember, 3 of each item for each family member. Add these items to the items you put in the large plastic zip lock bag you started last week. Make sure you the expiration date is a year from now.):

1) Hot chocolate instant drink mix
2) Small box of raisins

For those of you who already have your 72 Hour Emergency Food Kits, replace any expired items, or purchase a portable toilet (good for everyone to do).

Portable Toilet--purchase options:

1) You can purchase the whole toilet kit (bucket, toilet seat with 2 Enzyme 300 Packets) from for $14.95 plus $6 shipping. I would also purchase more of the Enzyme 300 Packets, probably 5-10 (60 cents each at

2) Or, you can purchase the items separately, 5 gallon bucket from Home Depot (about $5) and then purchase only the toilet seat ($8.95 plus $6 shipping from 5-10 Enzyme 300 Packets (60 cents each from

3) Or, Majors Survival Warehouse in Gardena may have them too.

4) For the 4 above you need to purchase several bags of cat liter and heavy duty black plastic trash bags (large size).

How to use the portable toilet? Check out the "Sanitation" blog posting under "Postings" on the right of this blog for the information.

Spiritual Assignment:

The most important thing any of us can do is to stay close to the spirit for guidance by reading our scriptures and praying individually and as a family daily.

Read the article in this month's Ensign, "Preparation of all Kinds Blesses Saints in Joplin, Missouri", page 74-75. Discuss as a family or with a friend. If you do not get the Ensign, you can look up the article on the church website,, under church magazines. Click on the Ensign for September 2011, scroll down to the article. Share this article with neighors and friends.

Food Storage Ideas:

An important part of our food storage is vitamin and mineral supplements.

"It is recommended that 365 vitamin or vitamin/mineral tablets or capsules be stored for each family member per year (store according to ages) to help compensate for possible deficiencies in the diet due to a lack of variety of foods, and because of vitamins lost during food processing, storage, and preparation. Shelf-life is about 3-5 years is stored in a cool, dry and dark location.

Despite careful food planning, women may still need an iron and calcium supplement, particularly if they are pregnant or nursing (or plan on becoming pregnant). Storage of iron and calcium should be carefully considered."

(The above information came from the Magna Utah Central Stake Emergency Preparedness Plan)

If you take other supplemental tablets or capsules, considering storing them also and in the same manor as above.

Remember: Post your name and comment below for the FREE Monthly Giveaway Drawing to be held Sunday, September 25th.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Weekly Assignment and Food Storage Ideas (Week of September 4th)

Hi Carson Ward Family, Family, and Friends,

Congratulations to Angelita Vivo! She won our FREE Monthly Giveway Drawing last week. She won a Sycehelle Water Filtration Pump.


"By faith Noah, being warned moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house, ...." (Hebrews 11:7)

" without works is dead." (James 2: 20)

Once again we are reminded of the importance of being prepared with the recent events on the East Coast with Hurricane Irene and the earthquake. A disaster can come to anyone at any time! It amazes me, especially in the areas that are prone to hurricanes and tornadoes, that they do not prepared ahead of time. Each time they wait until the last minute, knowing this season is coming, to purchase supplies to protect their home and food, water and emergency supplies, many times finding the shelves very low on supplies and sometimes empty. Why not prepare ahead of time for the things you know you might have to face? In our area, we never know when an earthquake might happen, or the magnitude of it, why not be prepared now? Later will be too late!

Several years ago, a hurricane type force storm hit our south bay coast for several days. We were personally affected by the storm. It knocked down power lines, which knocked out the electricity, there was flooding in some areas, making it difficult, if not impossible to get through. Stores, gas stations, banks, businesses, and schools had to close in our area due to no electricity. Many power lines were down, making it unsafe to pass by and be on the road. In areas, if you could get to them, where stores were open, supplies were limited or not available. For over a week we had no electricity and were advised not to drink the tap water unless we boiled it, stores and banks were closed, schools were closed, and we were advised to stay home.

Thank goodness we had listened to our Church leaders and had prepared for times such as this. We had food and water, we had lanterns and candles, we had an electricity stove which meant we could not cook so we had an alternate way to cook, and we had a family emergency plan. What could have been a very difficult and stressful time with 6 children, we were able to meet the challenge. The children thought it was fun camping out in the front room, reading, singing and playing games by lanterns or candle light, and cooking with our emergency cooking equipment. Luckily, we could still use our toilet, but what if we could not, that would have been a situation we found out we were not prepared for.

How will you and your family cope if there is a disaster in our area? How prepared are you with food, water and emergency supplies? This is our goal, to have our Ward members prepared. This blog is to help you do so! Use it and "prepare every needful thing" (D&C 109:8) so you will be able to take care of you and your family.

Let us be like Noah, "being warned moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house." Let us just not rely on our faith, but work towards being prepared!

Temporal Assignments:

Now that we have completed our Family Emergency Medical Supplies we are going to again work on getting our Individual 72 Hour Food Kits for each family member together. Why are we doing this again? We want every family member to have one of these 72 Hour Backpack Kits for each family member. The 72 Hour Backpack not only involves food and snacks, but also personal hygiene items, a stressor kit, clothing, and other items. It has been a year since we originally put these together, and many of us need to rotate the food/snack/water items. We will also be adding items to our 3 Month/Year Food Supply.

72 Hour Individual Emergency Food Kit (This week add the following):

Important: Remember, if you purchase any of these food items from the 99 Cent Store, Dollar Tree or any discount store, even your regular grocery store, check the expiration dates. You want them to be good for at least a year.

Add the following (3 of each item for each family member. Example: if you have 4 people in your family, you need to purchase 12 of each item. Since they come 6 to a box, you will need 2 boxes of each for a family of 4):

1) Granola bars
2) Juice boxes

You will find these food items are high in calories, you will need this since food is limited.

Place these items in a large zip lock plastic bag for each family member and put it in a backpack for each family member. We will be adding items each week until completed. If you want to see a list of the entire food items, see the blog posting dated September 12th (last year), or the 72 Hour Emergency Kit on the right side under Postings. Scroll down until you get to the first menu, the same menu each day. Do not buy an expensive backpack but make sure the straps are strong enough to hold weight. Check out the discount stores like the Salvation Army, Good Will or Carson Discount Center on Sepulveda & Avalon, wash and dry them before use.

3 Month/Year Food Supply:

This week, add 5-10 cans of soup. Costco or Sams Club may have good prices, unless you can get them on sale at a regular grocery store this week. You can eat the soup even if not able to heat up.

Food Storage Ideas:

If you are using your freeze dried or dehydrated foods, make sure you hydrate them first before cooking. It is usually the same amount of water as the food you are using, wait about 5 minutes, then cook. In an emergency situation and there is no way to cook, you can eat it cold.

Printing these postings: Many of you like to print these posting and ideas. and keep them in a notebook for future references. To print, cut and paste to Microsoft or another type of word document and then print.

Remember: Post your name and comment below to have your name entered into our FREE Monthly Giveaway Drawing to held the last Sunday in September.