Saturday, December 29, 2012

Weekly Assignment, Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness Ideas (Week of December 30th)

Hi Carson Ward Family, Family and Friends,

We are back...

After an extended health issue and the holidays we are back to help you with your 2013 Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness goals and questions. We are excited for the new year and all it holds, and for the past 2012, which has taught us the importance of being prepared both spiritually and temporally as we have watched the events of 2012 unfold.

As I have watched how little our nation and the world, and its people, are unprepared for natural disasters, civil events, job losses, and the events of the world, I see how much work we have to make sure each of you, your family and neighbors are prepared for what may lie ahead this coming year. Natural disasters are intensifying, governments around the world are collapsing, and the world economy is uncertain! We all need to be better prepared!

This year, 2013, I have decided to go back to the basics. After watching all the disasters and events of 2012 unfold, I have noticed many people do not have 72 Hour Individual Emergency Backpack Kits with food, water, and other items they need. So, we are going to concentrate for the next few months on helping you set up a 72 Hour Individual Emergency Backpack Kit for each person in your household, and a 72 Hour Emergency Family Bag. We are only going to add one item each week to make it easier and more economical for each family. Each week when you go grocery shopping pick up the item we are adding, easy. This will take us 14 weeks (3 1/2 months) to accomplish. If you want to  move faster, I have have the complete Food Kits list this Sunday,or you can find it under the "Postings",  "72 Hour Emergency Preparedness Backpack Kit".

If you already have a 72 Hour Individual Emergency Food Kit for each family member, then get them out and replace any expired items. If you do have them, then work on adding items to your long term Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness supplies. All the previous "Weekly Assignments" and "Postings" on the right side of the blog will help you accomplish these goals. Of course, we encourage everyone to work on these goals too.

A new year means new goals! Make the 72 Hour Individual Emergency Kits, Food Storage and Emergency Supplies a part of your personal and family goals this new year! Below are two great links that will help you with charting your Food Storage goals.

3 Month Food Storage Plan chart (printable):


"Knowing what we know...we must---use our talents, strengths, energies, abilities, and means to prepare for whatever may befall us and our children.... We do not know when the calamities and troubles of the last days will fall upon any of us...The Lord deliberately withholds from us the day and hour of his coming and of the tribulations which shall precede it---all as part of the testing and probationary experiences of immortality. He simply tells us to watch and be ready. We can rest assured that if we have done all in our power to prepare for whatever lies ahead, he will then help us with whatever else we need." (Bruce R. McConkie, "All Other Creatures", Ensgin, May 1979)

Weekly Assignment...72 Hour Individual Emergency Food Kits

This week add the following to each family's 72 Hour Individual Emergency Food Kit...

1) An extra large zip lock bag for each family member (I have seen these at Target, some grocery stores, and even some discount stores). Write each family members family on a bag.

2) 3 granola bars for each family member.  Place the granola bars in an extra large zip lock bag with the family members name on the bag. Each week we will add items to each kit (bag). A box of granola bars comes with 6 in each box. Please make sure you check the expiration dates, especially if purchasing them at the 99 Cent Store, the Dollar Tree or any other discount store. You want them to be good for at least a year.

Important Note: If you work away from home it is a very good idea to have a 72 Hour Individual Emergency Backpack Kit there too. You never know when a disaster or emergency may happen while away from home. We keep ours in our car, so if we are away from home we will have them. But remember, if you keep them in your car, you will need to replace the food kits probably twice a year because of the heat in the car.

72 Hour Individual Emergency Backpacks: Once you have the 72 Hour Individual Emergency Food Kits completed you will place the kit in a backpack. If your children have old school backpacks, and they are still in some what good condition, no holes, wash them, hang them out to dry and then place your Food Kits in them. You will need a backpack for each family member. Another good place to purchase them, besides a regular store like Target, is the Good Will, Salvation Army or any used discount center. It will need to be big enough to hold the Food Kit, water, the Hygiene Kit, and Stressor Kit (which we will work on  these after the Food Kit) and a change of clothing. A regular size school backpack should be large enough.

Emergency Preparedness Ideas:

After watching the disaster events of 2012 unfold I have also noticed some items that are very important to our survival and comfort. They are food, water, some source of light and electricity, shelter, heat and a family evacuation plan.  Please use the resources under "Postings" and the weekly postings under "Blog Archives" on the right to help you prepare for what ever may come your way. Let us all strive harder and set goals this year that will help each of us become better prepared!

FREE Monthly Giveaway Drawing:

I have also decided to change how we do the "FREE Monthly Giveaway Drawing" since some of you do not have home computers and some have not been able to access the blog site. You will no longer need to leave a comment below, which I still enjoy reading from you, or answer a question and email me the answer. Now, anyone who attends church on the 4th Sunday will enter their name in the drawing. At the end of Gospel Doctrine I will draw a name. This way everyone has a chance to win!

"Postings" and "Blog Archives": On the right of this blog you will find "Postings" and "Blog Archives". Under these you will find "Weekly Assignments, Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness Ideas", information on Food Storage, Emergency Preparedness, Evacuation, and so much more. Scroll through them and you find all the information you will be to be better prepared.

Comments: Your comments are most welcome, and helps us know what you are interested in learning about and what experiences you have had personally with Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness situation. We all need to help each other be better prepared. Please leave your comment below.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Special Posting...How to prepare for a disaster (Week of November 4th)

Hi Carson Ward Family, Family and Friends,


Once again we have been reminded of the importance of being prepared both temporally and spiritually with the recent Superstorm Sandy on the East cost of the United States. Last week I heard on the radio 95% of Americans are not prepared! Wow! That is a lot, a lot more than I thought. Are you in that 95%? I have also heard that only 6% of LDS Church members are prepared! Wow!!!

As the events of Superstorm Sandy have unfolded on TV (mostly CNN) and radio stations, I have been listening for things I was not aware of that we need to do to be better prepared, and also, reminders of things we need to do. Some times the situation/warnings may become worse than predicated, as in the case of "Sandy". Here they are...

Things people need the most beside food and water (ABC new caster report, ABC New Good Morning America):

1) portable toilets (and sanitaiton suppies)
2) generators (no power, cannot pump water out of basements and houses)
3) flashlights and batteries
4) cleaning supplies, brooms and heavy trash bags (also hand lotion, water hard on their hands)

Also, blankets, shelter, clothing and heat.

The things they are trying to save from the water damage are family photos and albums, important documents, and school year books.

1) Evacuation: When they say to evacuate, do not hesitate, or second guess it, evacuate! In some case on the East coast, it became to late to evacuate and they were advised to hunker down. Precious lives were lost because they did not heed the warning. When you are advised to evacuate, gather all important documents (you should already have them all together), family photos/albums, family heirlooms, and anything else special to you you would not want to loose and leave. If your family is separated, have a meeting place (your home, a relatives home, a landmark) and leave.

2) Your vehicles and gas generators: Always keep at least a half of tank of gas in all your cars at all times. If you have to evacuate it should get you far enough away. If possible, keep extra gas stored in regulation gas cans in your garage. If you have a gas generator, you will need gas to run it. Remember: DO NOT PLACE THE GENERATOR IN YOUR HOUSE OR AN ENCLOSED AREA, IT WILL KILL YOU! On the East coast people are in 3 hours waiting lines for gas. In some cases the gas stations pumps were not working due to no power. Now they are starting to run out because it is difficult to get gas to the stations.

3) Keep extra food, water and medical supplies stored: I would rather have it and not need it, than need it and not have it! Stores only keep enough items for 2 weeks. In a disaster situation they will run out in just a few hours. PLEASE store some extra cans of food and water at all times in your home and keep your 73 Hour Emergency Individual Kits in your cars (just in case you are away from home when the disaster hits). You should store at least a months supply, or more if possible.

4) Keep emergency supplies on hand: You will need ways to light (lanterns, flashlight with extra batteries, generator, etc.), a radio (either solar or battery operated with extra batteries), plastic tarps to cover leaking roofs and broken windows, a way to provide shelter if you cannot stay in your home, a way to provide heat if cold, sanitation. Remember: DO NOT USE A CHARCOAL BBQ OR GAS GENERATOR IN YOUR HOME OR AN ENCLOSED AREA. IT WILL KILL YOU! Have extra medical supplies on hand, and prescription medications. See under "Postings" on the right side of this blog, "Emergency Supplies, Shelter, Heating, Lighting, Cooking", etc. DO NOT USE CANDLES OR OPEN FLAMES! If there is a gas leak, there will be an explosion. They could fall over and cause a fire.

5) Flooded Water: Do not wade through flooded water if you can avoid it. Do not cross flooded streets in your car. It can become stuck, you could fall into a large hole not visible, and you could be washed away.  Flood water is usually contaminated with oil, chemicals, sewage and other deceases. If it is sea water and your home is flooded, all your electrical will have to be replaced. Sea water damages the wiring and other things. Do not turn on your electricity until it has been inspected. Do not go outside...there could be down power lines you cannot see in the water or in the dark, you will be electrocuted.

6) Water: Do not drink the water from your faucets unless instructed by local leaders it is safe. Contaminates can get into the water too. Keep water stored, at least enough for two week per person in your home. See the "Postings" under "Water Storage" on the right.

7) Communication: Phone lines (land lines) and cell phone towers may be down. Even the main phone companies and cell phone companies main equipment may be down. There may be no communication or limited communication. With no power, there is no way to charge your cell phones. If you cannot call out, you may be able to text.

8) Fires: There may be explosions and fires due to gas leaks and exploding transformers. Be careful. Do not use candles or open flames. Keep a fire extinguisher in your home and cars. Do not attempt to put out gas leak fires with water, they will spread.

9) Fallen Trees: Watch for trees that have been saturated by heavy rain or damage due to earthquakes. They could fall onto your home, cars and people. Watch for down power lines caused by the fallen trees. (Do not attempt to remove the trees or go around them.) Keep a chain saw so you can cut down fallen trees, if it is safe. Keep plastic tarps so you can cover up any damages to your roof.

10) Injuries and Death: There will be injuries, and possible those who have died. There may be no medical help from the fire department. There may be no hospital available in your area and no way to get to another hospital out of your area. You will be on your own! Keep emergency medical supplies in your home and good first-aid kits in your cars. Attend to the most serious injuries first, then continue until the minor ones. If someone has died, if possible, cover them up and put a marker if you have to leave.

11) On Your Own: You may be on your own for several hours or several days. You may be trapped in your home, car or work place until help can arrive, which could take a long time. Be prepared to take care of your family and help neighbors the best you can. Neighbors will need to pull together and help each other. Pull your resources together.

12) Homeowners Insurance, Homeowner-condo Insurance and Renters Insurance: It does not cover any flooding, damages nor personal property caused by the flooding! You need a separate policy for flooding through the National Flood Insurance Program.

13) Infrastructures and buildings: Roads, freeways, bridges and tunnels may be unusable or destroyed. Buildings may have serious damages. Be careful! Do not attempt to use them. You may be cut off from emergency help. Take are of situations the best you can until help can arrive.


While listening to CNN I heard a story from a lady who lived on Staten Island. Due to the damages of the bridge from the main land to the island, they were cut off from any help. FEMA and other emergency help could not get in for several days. The area had serious damages, flooding and loss of life. Her home was flooded (basement and first flood). They were not in an evacuation area, and were told they did not need to evacuate. Her young just happened to look out the window and saw the sea water coming towards them. They lost many precious temporal things, but her family was alright. She said her church was there before FEMA. Thirty members and the missionaries from her church showed up to help her and her family and others. Even though they had lost "things", some precious to her, she knew they were resilient and God was watching over them. They were prepared with food and water, but more important, they were prepared spiritually. Yes, this family is from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. They were prepared the best they could be both temporally and spiritually!

Anyone who reads this blog...Please take the things listed above seriously. Please prepared for what may come your way. Please share this with other family members, friends, neighbors and co-workers. Please share this blog with them, it may save a life. The more of us that are prepared will allow the local and government emergency teams to help others, and we will also be able to help others. Please remember, "If ye are prepared, ye have no need to fear."

Postings on the right: Please review all the postings on the right under "Postings" so you will know what to do and what you will need in an emergency situation. They could save precious lives!

Comments: Please share your comments, suggestions and experiences below so we can all help each other be better prepared. Thank you

Sunday, October 21, 2012

October/November Assignment (Month of October and November 2012)

Hi Carson Ward Family, Family and Friends,

Due to some health issues I have not published any blog postings for awhile. Since I am still dealing with them I will not publish any blog postings for a few more weeks, but I did still want to give you an assignment for now. I  will be back about the middle of November!

Remember: Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness should be a continual part of our lives. We need to continually add items and "Rotate" those we currently have.

Congratulations! Jay and Laura Jensen won our September Monthly FREE Giveaway Drawing. They on two "Stressor Kits" for their 72 Hour Individual Emergency Backpack Kits. See under "Postings", 72 Hour Emergency Kits for a list of the items in the "Stressor Kit", and why you need them.


"I would rather have something (regarding Emergency Preparedness and Food Storage) and not need it, than have nothing and need it." (Anonymous)

October and November Assignment:

Please review the last nine months of Weekly Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness Assignments and work on adding items you are missing or need to increase for your Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness Items.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Weekly Assignment, Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness Ideas (Week of September 23rd)

Hi Carson Ward Family, Family and Friends,

National Emergency Preparedness Month


"Our Heavenly Father created this beautiful earth, with all its abundance, for our benefit and use. His purpose is to provide for our needs as we walk in faith and obedience. He has lovingly commanded us to 'prepare every needful thing' (Doctrine and Covenants 109:8) so that, should adversity come, we may care for ourselves and our neighbors and support bishops as they care for others."  (The First Presidency)

"Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) 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." ("books and things, Especially for Families")

All of us need to have at least a 3-month supply of food that is a part of our normal daily diet, drinking water in case the water supply may be polluted or disrupted, emergency supplies (like medical, shelter, sanitation, cooking and lighting equipment) and financial reserves (cash in small bills and change kept in a safe place in your home, and some in your car, in case the electricity is down and you cannot get cash from your bank).

I hope of each of you are using this Emergency Preparedness Blog to help you accomplish your goals. We all know the scripture saying, "If ye are prepared, ye shall not fear".

FREE Monthly Giveaway Drawing Question: What has Heavenly Father lovingly commanded us to do? Please email me the answer to to have your name entered into this Sunday's, September 23rd, drawing. Please include your name if not in your email address.

September Goals: Emergency Supplies and Adding Breakfast Items to your Food Storage

This is the last week for our September goals. I hope you have been working on our September Goals by adding emergency supplies and breakfast items to your food storage. See the last three blog postings for information and ideas on the September goals. Of course, you can continue beyond this month and come back it to it when need to add more items.

Weekly Assignment...Emergency Supplies:

Please see the September 2nd posting for a list of the emergency supplies you should have on hand. Also, see September 9th and 16rh for more ideas and goals.

1) This week add at least one of the emergency supplies from the list.

Weekly Assignment...Adding Breakfast Items to your Food Storage:

Please see the September 2nd posting for a list of breakfast items to add to your food storage. Also, see September 9th and 16th for more ideas and goals.

1) This week add more breakfast items to your food storage from the list.

Food Storage Ideas:

"Dinner Is In The Jar" recipe...these recipes use dehydrated/freeze-dried vegetables. Follow the instructions in the September 9, 2012 blog posting.

Taco Soup

In the Jar...
1/2 cup dried sweet corn
2 tablespoon chopped bell peppers
2 tablespoons dried minced onions
1/3 cup ranch dressing mix
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoons onion powder
1/4 teaspoons oregano leaves
1/2 teaspoon paprika
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper

In a baggie in the Jar...
1/2 cup pinto beans (remove rocks!)
1/2 cup great northern beans
1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1 pint cooked beef
2 cans diced tomatoes
16 cups water divided
Shredded cheese
Sour Cream
Crushed tortilla chips

Directions: Remove oxygen absorber if ingredients stored in a Mylar bag/pouch. Soak beans and soda in 4 cups water overnight. Drain and rinse. Simmer beans in 6 cups of water covered for 2 hours on low heat. (This can be done in advance) Drain. Return beans to pot, add 6 cups of water, tomatoes (undrained) and beef. Bring to a boil. Turn heat off. Put remainder of jar contents into pot. Cover and let sit 5 minutes. Return to a simmer. Cover and simmer about 10 to 15 minutes. Top individual bowls with shredded cheese, sour cream and crushed tortilla chips. Usually serves 8-10 cups.

Emergency Preparedness Ideas:

If there is an emergency where you need to evacuate immediately, it is critical that important legal documents and records are at hand and ready to go with you. We have all learned the lessons from the Katrina hurricane---having documents that prove you are who you say you are and you own what you say you own can mean the difference between getting the government aid that you desire and being on your own.

Keep a copy of each document, or the originals, in a water proof container, all sealed in a large zip lock plastic bag. Keep them near your 72 Hour Emergency Kits.

We will discuss this more in detail next week in the October goals, Emergency Disasters.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Weekly Assignment, Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness Ideas (Week of September 16th)

Dear Carson Ward Family, Family and Friends,

National Emergency Preparedness Month


"The revelation to store food may be as essential to our temporal salvation today as boarding the Ark was to the people in the days of Noah." Ezra Taft Benson

"It wasn't raining when Noah built the ark." Brigham Young

Wow! It has been three years, August 1, 2010, since I started this blog to help our Ward members, family and friends to become better prepared both temporally and spiritually. I know some of you are using the information found here to help your family, but I also know there are many who are not. I have tried to create this blog to simplify emergency preparedness and food storage. To show you you can do it! You just need to start. Please share this blog with family, friends and neighbors. The blog is now reaching throughout the United States and into Russia, Canada, England, France and a few other countries.


As quoted above, "it wasn't raining when Noah built the ark." Many people at the time of Noah thought he was crazy, they laughed at him and thought it foolish to built such a large ship, there was no rain. They would not listen to the counsel he had been given by the Lord, to prepare. But when the rains began and the flooding started, they pounded on the ark to get it, but it was too late. They had not heeded the words of the Lord, they had not prepared temporally and spiritually.

We too have been warned and warned by our prophets, general authorities and leaders to get ready, to have water and food storage. Many years ago it was a year's supply, which it still is, but our leaders lowered it to three months, thinking this might be easier for some to accomplish, and then continue until you have a year's supply. Listen to their counsel...

“Maintain a year's supply. The Lord has urged that his people save for the rainy days, prepare for the difficult times, and put away for emergencies, a year's supply or more of bare necessities so that when comes the flood, the earthquake, the famine, the hurricane, the storms of life, our families can be sustained through the dark days. How many of us have complied with this? We strive with the Lord, finding many excuses: We do not have room for storage. The food spoils. We do not have the funds to do it. We do not like these common foods. It is not needed -- there will always be someone to help in trouble. The government will come to the rescue. And some intend to obey but procrastinate.”   (The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, p. 375)
 "We continue to encourage members to store sufficient food, clothing and where possible fuel for at least one year. We have not laid out an exact formula for what should be stored. However, we suggest that members concentrate on essential foods that sustain life, such as grains, legumes, sugar, salt, cooking oil, powdered milk, and water. Most families can achieve and maintain this basic level of preparedness. The decision to do more than this rests with the individual. We encourage you to follow this counsel with the assurance that a people prepared through obedience to the commandments of God need not fear." The First Presidency
What if...
What if you went to the grocery store and found the shelves empty? What if you had to evacuate in 15 minutes? What if there was no good running drinking water? What would you do? If you have not already, please start today in storing food, water and emergency supplies for you and your family! President Gordon B. Hinckly stated, "Are these perilous times? They are. But there is no need to fear. We can have peace in our hearts and peace in our homes" (October 2001 General Conference). There is peace in knowing we are prepared!
Weekly FREE Monthly Giveaway Drawing Question: What warnings to our church leaders give us? Please email the answer to Please include your name in the email if not in your email address.
September Goals: Emergency Supplies and Adding Breakfast Items to your Food Storage
Weekly Assignment...Emergency Supplies:

Check the last two week's blog postings, September 2nd and 9th, for emergency supplies you and your family will need in case of an emergency situation. Assess what you have and what you need. Set goals as a family or with another family member or friend to acquire the items you need. What will you do if a disaster hits, would you be able to take care of yourself for 1-3 months?
Weekly Assignment...Adding Breakfast Items to your Food Storage:

This week add more breakfast items from the list on the September 2nd posting. To determine how much you will need per family member per month, keep a list of the breakfast items your family eats in a month, then multiply by the number of months you have set for your goal, example three months. Remember to include items for family members, such a baby or an elderly person, that may eat differently than the rest of the family.
New Emergency Preparedness Website:
Food For Health International has created a new emergency preparedness website at  . Some of there prices are higher than other companies, but they have high quality food and other items. Watch for sales. Also, watch the great video on their website.
Because this month is National Emergency Preparedness Month many emergency preparedness and food storage companies have many items on sale, click on the links, (,, (Costco Online), and the link above.
Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness Ideas:
Last week I mention a book, "Dinner Is In The Jar". See the September 2nd and 9th postings to see more about this book and how to put together a "dinner in a jar or Mylar pouch". Here is another great recipe... Remember, if you make the dish for your family, then make up three jars or Mylar pouches for your 90 day supply.
Pea and Lentil Soup
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons split peas
1/4 cup _ 2 tablespoons lentils
1/4 cup + tablespoons barley
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons macaroni
2 tablespoons rice
1 1/2 teaspoon bouillon
1 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
2 tablespoons celery flakes
2 tablespoons parsley flakes
1/4 teaspoon thyme
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon butter powder
1 1/2 teaspoons dried minced onion
1 tablespoon tomato powder
1 bay leaf (slide along the side of the jar)
Add-On: 8 cups water and 1 pound cooked beef (optional)
Directions: Remove the oxygen absorber if the ingredients are in a Mylar pouch. Empty jar or Mylar bag into soup pot. Add cooked meat and water. Bring to a boil. Cover. Lower heat and simmer for 40-50 minutes. Note: Also delicious without the meat.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Weekly Assignment, Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness Ideas (Week of September 9th)

Hi Carson Ward Family, Family and Friends,

National Emergency Preparedness Month


"...set your houses in order. If you have paid your debts, if you have a reserve, even though it be small, then should storms howl about your head, you will have shelter for your wives and your children and peace in your hearts."      President Gordon B. Hinckley, October 1998

Could you take care of yourself and your family if an emergency situation arose? Would you have the necessary emergency supplies, food and water? How long could you last by yourselves?

"And out of small things proceedeth that which is great." (Doctrine and Covenants 64:33) What a wonderful scripture, and the quote by President Hinckley! If we just start by adding a couple of cans of vegetables, fruits, meats, soups, etc. each week when we go grocery shopping, in no time at all, what started out small, will become great. Just a few extra cans a week, that is all it takes! When we were a young family, with only one income, Robert was hit while driving his service truck, his injuries kept him home for three months. As you know, Disability does pay you your full pay check. Because of us being diligent in adding a few cans of food each grocery day, we were able to have enough food to get us through the next three months, to be able to pay our bills and take care of our small family. What a blessing it was to have our Food Storage!

Just start, that is all you have to do! You will be so excited to see your Food Storage grow, just like a savings account, and you will desire to add more and more.

September Goals: Emergency Supplies and Adding Breakfast Items to your Food Storage

In last week's posting I listed several items you should have in your Emergency Supplies. There is also a handout of the list on the display table in front of our church chapel, or you can cut and paste and print out the list for yourself.

Weekly Assignment...Emergency Supplies:

1) This week inventory your emergency supplies from last week's emergency supplies posting list. Make a chart of what you have, what you need, and where they are stored in your house, garage and/or shed. This would make a great Family Home Evening activity, or Family Saturday activity. 
2) Sit down as a family or with another family member or friend not in your household. Review the chart. Set goals to add the items you need.
3) Set a goal to replace or repair any items that need your attention.
4) As I mentioned last week, some items will be easy to gather together. Some items you will be able to organize in a day or a week, some may take longer. Set a goal to work on one or two on the items in the list each month. Involve the whole family.
5) Check off the items needed on your chart as you complete them. I love lists and checking off items as completed! Keep the chart visible so it will remind you what needs to be done. Review the chart at each Family Home Evening. Once one item is check off, set a new goal to accomplish the next one, and so on, until you have completed all your goals.

Weekly Assignment...Adding Breakfast Items to your Food Storage:
1) This week add 1-2 items for each family member for a one week to one month supply from the breakfast food list on last week's posting. Remember, only store what your family will eat. Keep the food items in a cool dry location.

Weekly FREE Monthly Giveaway Drawing Question: What happens when you start out small? Please email me your answer to Please include your name if not in your email address. Your name will be entered into our FREE Monthly Giveaway Drawing each week you answer the question, giving you four chances to win.

Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness Ideas:

"Dinner Is In the Jar" by Kathy Clark

I received the book I wrote about in last week's blog, "Dinner Is In The Jar".  I love this book! I would suggest everyone order the book on line. Click on the link above to review and order the book. I will post one recipe from the book each week. But first you will need some equipment to complete the "dinner in a jar". You can either place the contents for the dinner in a quart Mason canning jar or a Mylar bag.

If you use the quart Mason canning jars you will need to purchase quart and pint (some recipes call for both) canning jars and a Food Saver Sealer. I purchased my Food Saver Sealer on EBay for about $20 (maker sure it has the port hole for the hose that attaches to the jar sealer caps. I also purchased the Jar Sealer caps (a large and small one) for about $15 on EBay.

If using Mason jars you place the ingredients in the jar, then seal the lid as instructed with the Food Saver Sealer. Place a label, with the instruction, on the jar and store up to 90 days. Note: If the ingredients are powdery, you cannot seal them in the Mason jars, when you seal the jar the jar sealer cap will clog. If sealing in the Food Saver, put all the powdery ingredients, like seasonings, in the bottom of the jar, then the rest of the ingredients.

If you use Mylar bags you will need to purchase the Mylar bags and the oxygen absorbers. You can purchase them from the LDS Dry-Pack Cannery or from (not the large ones). Cut the Mylar bag in half length wise, then seal the longer edge with your hot iron (no steam), fill the Mylar bag with the recipe ingredients and then seal the top of the bag, leaving about 3 inches, with a hot iron. Vacuum out the air in the bag with a vacuum cleaner hose, then seal the remainder of the top with a hot iron. Place a label, with instructions, on the front and store up to 90 days.

The regular "dinner in a jar" or "dinner in a Mylar bag" will feed about 4 adults. The soup recipes make between 8-10 cups. Biscuit recipes make about 12 biscuits.

A great tip in the book. Make the recipe for dinner that night. Then put the same ingredients together in 3 jars or Mylar bags. One dinner jar for each months. If you make all the recipes you will have 90 days of "Dinner Is In The Jar" (or Mylar bags).

Add-ons: Most of the recipes have "Add-ons". These are ingredients like meats, poultry, water, etc. You can purchase cans of meats, chicken and other meats to add to your recipe. Watch the expiration dates, rotate as needed. Or, you can can ground meat, other meats and chicken in Mason jars with a pressure cooker canner. Probably much to hard for most of us. If you check out Wendy Dewitt online she has a UTube video that shows how to do it.

Chicken Noodle Soup

2 tablespoons minced onion
2 tablespoons bouillon
2 tablespoons celery flakes
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1/3 cup dried carrots (dehydrated or freeze-dried)
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 cup dried mushroom slices (optional)
2 cups macaroni
3/4 cup rice

Add-on: 1 pint of cooked chicken, 12 cups water.

Directions: Remove the oxygen absorber from the Mylar bag if using them. Mix jar contents with chicken and hot water. Simmer 15-20 minutes. Remove Bay leaf, serve. Remember to never get hot water from the tap, it comes from your hot water heater which has sedatives at the bottom of it. Heat the water on the stove first.

(All of the above information under Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness Ideas is from "Dinner Is In The Jar", by Kathy Clark)

Comments: Most welcome!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Weekly Assignment, Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness Ideas (Week of September 2nd)

Hi Carson Ward Family, Family and Friends,

Congratulations! Sister Angelita Vivo won the August FREE Monthly Giveaway Drawing. She one a Tri-fold shovel, a 3-in-1 ax, hammer and crowbar, and a multipurpose tool. Each time you answer the question in the weekly blog posting and email me the answer your name is entered into the FREE Monthly Giveaway Drawing. Four chances to win each month if you answer all the weekly questions.

Spiritual Preparation...

As members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-days Saints we have been blessed with a most marvelous gift, the Gift of the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost, which brings us constant guidance, comfort, peace, protection and understanding. I often speak about temporal preparation, but another very important part of Emergency Preparedness is spiritual preparation. A woman I know related how being spiritually prepared helped her in at a very difficult time in her life....She has been going through some very rough trails, but because she is spiritually prepared, she is better able to handle them.

In a recent August 2012 Ensign article, "Natural Disasters", Elder Stanley G. Ellis (2005 Area Seventy for North America Southwest Area) stated..."As we seek Heavenly Father's guidance, the Holy Ghost will help us prepare for, endure, and recover from natural disasters. As a storm (hurricane) approached, a major question we asked was whether or not people should evacuate the area. The Spirit directed me not to make a general recommendation for the whole area but rather to seek each stake leader, each bishopric, each family to prayerfully consider the situation and receive their own inspiration as to what they should do as events unfolded, it became obvious that the Spirit knew what was best for each individual family."

We each need to be close to the Spirit to receive personal revelation and guidance from the Holy Ghost for our individual family. What may be best for one family may not be best for another. Spiritual Preparation is so key to Emergency Preparedness! There is no doubt temporal and spiritual trails will come our way, but if we are prepared both temporally and spiritually we will be able to endure our trails, we will be lifted up, held up, strengthened and guided by our Heavenly Father through the Holy Ghost.

National Preparedness Month

New September Goals: Emergency Supplies and Adding Breakfast Items to our Food Storage

Emergency Supplies:

  Besides needing food and water, we need to store emergency supplies in case of a disaster, pandemic or other emergency situation. Think of all the things you use and tasks you perform daily. What if you did not have use of them? Here are some things to consider:

1) How would you cook? You will need ways to cook, be it either one way or several ways; gas or propane BBQ, Butane stove, fire pit, Dutch oven, Solar oven, etc. You will also need fuel for the type of equipment you are storing. See under "Postings" on the right under "Cooking, Heating and Lighting".
2) What about electricity? You will need ways to see at night and possible run appliance and other equipment. You need some type of lantern (either propane or LED battery operated), candles, matches, a gas portable generator or a Solar fuel-less generator (mention in last week's blog posting), gas for the gas generator, and flashlights with extra batteries. See under "Postings" on the right under "Cooking, Heating and Lighting".
3) What if you could not stay in your home or had to evacuate? You will need some type of shelter. A tent large enough for your family, or several smaller ones to accommodate the family. A large heavy tarp with rope and duck tape could make a shelter. You will need a sleeping bag for each family member or blankets to make a bed roll. We keep a 3 person tent in our car just in case if we are away from home and need shelter. See under "Postings" on the right under "Shelter" and "what to do in an evacuation".
4) What about sanitation? You will need a portable toilet if you cannot use your house toilet (no water to flush it or it is broken). See under "Posting" on the right under "Sanitation".
5) What about a way to do laundry? If you have no electricity and running water you will not be able to use your washing machine. How will you clean your closes? You should have a large tub, preferably metal, an old fashioned scrub board (ACE Hardware has them, maybe Home Depot or Lowe's), laundry soap, a clothes line and clothes pins (your dryer will not work if no electricity and gas), a hammer and nails to hang up the clothes line.
6) What if there is a pandemic or you are advised to stay in your home due to a chemical spill and you need to seal all your doors and windows? You will need large heavy plastic (enough to cover all your windows and outside doors), duck tape and scissors to seal up your outside doors and windows. Cut a piece of heavy plastic large enough to cover the window or door you are trying to block out and seal all the way around it with duck take.
7) Gas for your vehicles. If there is a disaster or loss of electricity, the gas pumps will not work. Always try to keep a half of tank of gas in all your vehicles at all times. If there is an emergency and you need to leave, you should have enough to get you safely away. If you have a garage, or a side of your home where there is no sun hitting it, store two or more 5 gallons gas cans of gas. Make sure they are for gasoline. (WalMart has them for about $10) You will need to rotate the gas every 6 months. When your vehicles get low in gas, fill with the gas in the gas cans and then refill them immediately.
8) Have maps on hand of your local areas. If you are told to evacuate, have local maps in all vehicles and in your 72 Hour Emergency Backpacks so you will know the routes to take in case of an evacuation.
9) Shovel, ax, hand saw, strong knife, crowbar, screw drivers, pliers, wrenches. You may need these in an emergency situation.
10) Wrenches to turn off your gas. Know how and where to turn off your main electricity, water and gas. ONLY TURN OFF THE GAS IF YOU SMELL GAS. Keep the gas wrench taped to your gas meter so you can access it immediately when needed. Only turn them off as needed and if instructed to do so by local government officials.
11) Water filtration. Have some way to filter your water if need be. The Seychelle Water Pump Filter filters out 99.9999% of all contaminates and bacteria. Each filter filters out 100 gallons of water. Also, have extra filters on hand. If the water is really dirty, run through a t-shirt first, then filter. If you do not have one check out Seychelle Water Filtration on Google.
12) 55 Gallon Water Barrels. If you have a place you should have at least two or more, depending on the size of your family and needs, 55 gallon water barrels, or bottled water stored. Rain barrels are good to have too. Check on line how to make and install one. See "Postings" on the right side under "Water". You will need a syphon or water pump to remove the water from the barrels as needed and to replace.
13) First-aid Kit, Family Medical Supplies and Prescription Medications. You will need medical supplies for your family in case of an emergency or disaster. Each vehicle should have a first-aid kit. Keep extra prescription medications and supplies any family members take on hand.
14) Cash on hand in small bills and change.  If there is no electricity you will not be able to get cash from your bank or an ATM. You should have cash in small bills and change because people and stores may not be able to make change or either tell you they cannot to make more money off of you. The rule is, in your home, you should have equivalent to one month's salary, if possible, in cash.  It is also a good idea to keep small bills and change in your car for emergencies. You should also have some in your 72 Hour Emergency Backpacks.
15) Hand can opener (in case no electricity for your electric can opener). Keep with your canned and #10 dehydrated/freeze-dried canned Food Storage.
16) Fire extinguisher. Each household and vehicle should have a fire extinguisher to put out small fires.
17) Radio. Each household and vehicle should have a battery or solar operated radio with extra batteries.
18) Important papers like deeds, documents like passport, birth and marriage certificates, and insurances (auto, homeowner/renters, etc.). Keep all these together in one place in fire proof box in case you have to evacuate quickly. Each family member should know where these are and 1-2 family members should be responsible for getting them when you need to evacuate.
19) Video tape and take photos of all your belongs inside your home, garage and vehicles. Open closets and drawers and video tape and photo too all your belongs. Keep a copy at home, one at work or with your family or close friend out of the area or state. It is also a good idea to make an inventory of your belongs and their value for insurance purposes, and keep a copy with the video and photos.
20) Passport. Each family member should have an updated passport just in case you need to leave the county. You have to have a passport to enter Canada and Mexico. You never know when you might need it.

Each family is different and has different needs. Make a list of the things your family uses and does daily. Of course, you cannot do all the above at once. Some will be easier to do right away than others. Set goals as a family to accomplish the items above, maybe one or two a month. Try to keep similar items together in the house, garage or a shed, like all shelter items, all lighting items, etc..

Adding Breakfast Items to your Food Storage:

Breakfast items are cereals, oatmeal, granola, granola bars, breakfast drinks, Tang, orange and fruit powdered drinks, non-fat dehydrated milk, Almond and Rice milk in cartons that do not have to be refrigerated until opened (Trader Joes and Whole Foods carry these, possibly Costco and Sam's Club.), hot chocolate and apple cider mixes, muffin mixes, dehydrated powdered eggs, pancake mix, Bisquick mix, syrup, jams and jellies, bottled juices, juice boxes, dehydrated powdered butter/margarine, and canned and dehydrated fruits. Remember to store breakfast items for babies, children and the elderly in your family.

If you store your breakfast cereals take them out of the box and seal them in Mylar pouches/bags for longer storage. Google how to seal Mylar pouches/bags and on Best price I have found for the Mylar pouches/bags and oxygen absorbers is Non-fat dehydrated milk you purchase from the regular grocery store only keeps for six months. It needs to be sealed in the #10 cans or Mylar pouches/bags for longer storage. Of course, watch expiration dates, especially at discount centers and rotate as needed. is the best place I have found, lowest prices and low shipping cost, for breakfast items as mentioned above. They come in #10 cans, and some in Mylar pouches/bags. You can also can oatmeal and non-fat milk at the LDS Dry Pack Cannery. Click on the link below for

Weekly Assignment, Adding Breakfast items to your Food Storage:

Assess the breakfast items your family eats. Figure out how much you eat a month, then multiply that by the number of months you have set your goal, example: 3 months.

1) This week add 1-2 months supply of one of the breakfast items above your family eats. Keep in a dry cool location.

Weekly FREE Monthly Giveaway Drawing Question: List 3 items you need in your Emergency Supplies. Please email me your answer at Please enclude your name if not in your email address.

Food Storage Ideas:

 Pic of jars                        

 I came across a great idea...Dinner Is In The Jar! I love this idea. You place all the ingredients in a Mason canning jar, or possibly a Mylar pouch/bag. You can set up 90 days of meals in a jar from your Food Storage. A great way to rotate your Food Storage and make it easier to prepare meals during a disaster emergency situation, or busy day. I have ordered the book and will share recipes from it once I get the book. Or you can order it for yourself on Google at "Dinner Is In The Jar", now on sale for $14.98, plus $4 shipping. What a fantastic idea!

Emergency Preparedness:

If your area is hit by a major disaster, there's a good chance that you will not have any access to emergency supplies. Stores do not keep a large amount of supplies (about two weeks worth), shelves will empty quickly, and there will be looters, as tens of thousands of people in your community and others literally break down the doors of stores to get their hands on supplies, food and water. This is not a good time to be on the streets. If you are prepared with emergency supplies, you and your family should be safe at home. "If ye are prepared, ye shall not fear."

Comments: All comments, idea and experience are welcomed!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Weekly Assignment, Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness (Week of August 26th)

Hi Carson Ward Family, Family and Friends,

What does it take for us to be prepared? A warning.....

"Then he said unto them, Nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: And great earthquakes shall be in divers places, and famines, and pestilences; and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven."  Luke 21: 10-11

Almost every day in the news we hear something about wildfires, earthquakes, flooding, droughts, crops of corn, wheat, and soy beans being destroyed by drought, rivers and lakes drying up, grain barges not being able to go up and down the Mississippi River due to the drought, grid and power outages, large sun solar flares that could effect our electricity, hurricanes, tornadoes, evacuations, wars, attempted terrorist attacks, diseases caused by insects, and economic disaster, and this is just in the United States. The whole world is having major difficulties. What does it take for us to start preparing? What does it take for us to realize there is no more time to procrastinate? Soon it will be to late, and we will be without the necessities of life, food, water, shelter, etc.. We need to prepare by storing food and water. We need to prepare by having some way to have light, heat, a way to cook, some type of shelter and extra medical supplies. WE NEED TO BE PREPARED!!!

We need to be as close to the Spirit as possible so we will know what to do and when to do it when the time comes. We need to follow the promptings of the Spirit and be prepared both temporally and spiritually!

I am trying to give you all the knowledge I have, and have learned from others, about emergency preparedness. I have given you this blog to simplify it for you so you can become prepared, both temporally and spiritually. I can teach you how to fish, but I cannot fish for you. We need to be the 5 wise Virgins with oil in their lamps. The time will come when it is too late to prepare, what will you do? What will you tell your family, your children, when there is no food to eat, no water to drink? What will you do when the grocery shelves are empty and there is no food for the trucks to deliver?

Just a little each day, each week, will add up quickly. Before you know it, you will be prepared. Please, please start today!

Weekly FREE Monthly Giveaway Drawing Question: When is the time to prepare? Please email me your answer to Please include your name if not in your email address. I must have your answer by 8:00am this coming Sunday to have your name entered into this Sunday's, August 26th drawing.

August Goals: Canning, Freezing and Dehydrating and Adding Fruits and Vegetables to our Food Storage

This is the last week for the August goals. Next week we will start the September goals.

The past few weeks I have shown you three ways to preserve the fruits and vegetables from your garden or those you have purchased on sale and in season. Freezing is the easiest way, but takes room in your freezer. Canning is not hard but is a little time consuming, but very rewarding when you are done. Dehydrating is not hard either, just takes time. I like to use a variety of ways to preserve food for our food storage.

Weekly Assignment, Adding Fruits and Vegetables:

This week continue to add commercially canned, home canned, frozen, dehydrated/freeze-dried fruits and vegetable to your food storage. It is good to have a variety of different types of food storage. Remember, when you store dehydrated/freeze-dried foods you will need to store extra water to rehydrate them. Keep all food storage in a dark dry cool location. The higher the temperature the shorter the shelf life.

Food Storage Ideas:

I found this great suggested "3-Month Food Storage Plan" chart listed below. Click on the link below and print out the chart, 2 pages. This will help you to know how much to store per person in your family. Only store what your family will eat. You may need to adjust the chart to fit your family.

Emergency Preparedness Ideas:

New product: A few months ago I learned about fuel-less generators, they use solar power. Wow! I love this. The advantage of a fuel-less generator is that neighbors will not know when you are using it, it is silent, they do not require you to store gas, you can use it inside your home and it is portable. Gas generators are very loud (someone may try to steal it in an emergency situation), you need to store gas and you cannot use it inside your home. The only disadvantage of the solar fuel-less generator is the cost. But a good gas generator is not cheap either. Check out the link below. This is the best price we have been able to find so far. We have spoken to the fellow you makes and sells them, nice fellow. If you have questions his name is Silas at 440-840-4856 (Ohio). Once on the website, click on "Portable Solar Generators". Others we have found are over $2,000 and up.
Click on the link before for the website.

Did you know? When your power goes out in a big area, you need to unplug all your electrically appliances and electronic equipment. When the power comes back on there may be a large power surge that could cause damage to them. Leave one light on so you know the electricity is back on.

Please leave your comment: All comments, experiences and suggestions are most welcome!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Weekly Assignment, Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness Ideas (Week of August 19th)

Hi Carson Ward Family, Family and Friends,

Someone is listening......

On Tuesday, August 7th, a cluster of earthquakes hit the northern Orange County area. The first one was felt at 3:45am with a magnitude of 4-5, and then by another with a 4-5 magnitude about 9:30am. Several other smaller ones were felt the following day.

Our daughter's family, who live in Huntington Beach, felt the earthquakes. Their son came running into their bedroom when the 3:45am one hit. He exclaimed, "Nana, was right!" When the next one hit at 9:30am, once again he exclaimed, a little louder, "Nana, was right!". That night before he went to bed, he folded his clothes and put them next to his bed with his shoes and a flashlight. He wanted to be prepared if another, and possibly bigger, earthquake hit during the night.

He has heard me tell our children and their families many times they need to be prepared and to get ready. It is great to hear that they are hearing me and following the counsel given, especially the younger ones. Thank you Spencer for listening to your Nana!

Just recently I heard the hurricane season this year is going to pretty bad. It is amazing how each year we see people living in the hurricane area scrambling to get ready when a hurricane is approaching. How many of them each year run to the stores for supplies of boards and nails to board up their windows, and to the stores for flashlights and batteries and drink water. Why????? Why do they do this each year? Why do they not store those supplies so when the hurricanes hit, they are not frantically running to the stores again for supplies? Why???? I guess we are all just creature of habit. We need to change our bad habits and be more prepared for what may come our way. Why do we procrastinate and leave it to the last minute? The last minute will be too late. As I said a few weeks ago--"When the emergency is upon us, the time of preparation has past!"

Weekly FREE Monthly Giveaway Drawing Question: What are the three ways to dehydrate fruits, vegetables and meats? Please email your answer to Please make sure to add your name if it does not appear in your email address. The next FREE Monthly Giveaway Drawing will be held Sunday, August 26th.

August Goals: Canning, Freezing and Dehydrating, Adding Fruits and Vegetables to our Food Storage

The last two weeks I have shown you how to freeze and can your fruits and vegetables. This week I will show you how to dehydrate them.

Dehydrating Fruits and Vegetables:

Dehydrating is the oldest form of food preservation. In the beginning people used a lot of salt to preserve their food, and they dried their food in the sun or on top of the stove. Today we have food dehydrators to help in the process of drying. Dehydration is safe because if removes the water from the food, mold and bacteria cannot grow on it, and it will not spoil. Drying the food does cause a loss of some of vitamin A and C. It takes 6-16 hours to dehydrate vegetables, 12-18 hours to dehydrate fruits, and 6-20 hours to dehydrate meats. You can dehydrate fruits, vegetables and make beef jerky. Once you have dehydrated them I would seal them in the Mylar pouches/bags with the oxygen absorbers for long term storage.  Then place the Mylar pouches/bags  in the 5 gallon food grade buckets you can purchase with lids.

Different methods of dehydrating food:

1) Sun Drying--Difficult, need 3-4 hour sunny days of at least 100 degrees each day. This will only work in areas where you have this type of weather.
2) Oven Drying--Not very energy efficient, foods are not very tasty in the end, your oven must obtain a temperature below 200 degrees and you need to prop the oven door open to maintain air circulation during the drying time. To much trouble for me!
3) Electric Dehydrators--The best method for dehydrating your food. Now days they are energy efficient and can be operated at a low temperature. Look for electric dehydrated that have heat control and a fan to maintain the air circulation during the drying time. Watch for great sales. Check online too.
 Excalibur 2400 4 Tray Starter Series Food Dehydrator
Does and Don't of Dehydrating your food (Follow the instructions in your Electric Dehydrator unit):

1) Do not keep the temperature too low or too high, follow the instructions.
2) Food should be dehydrated between 120 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit. Vegetables at 130 degrees, fruits at 135 degrees, meats are higher at 145-150 degrees.
3) The food should be leathery with no pockets of moisture when you touch it. Fruits, tear and check for moisture at the tear, if there is moisture, it is not dry enough. The vegetables should be tough, but can also be crisp. The meat should be tough, but shouldn't snap apart.
4) When storing your dehydrated food, make sure no moisture can get in. Best to seal in air tight contains, like the Mylar pouches/bags with oxygen absorbers as mentioned above. See the YouTube video on how to do this process yourself.
5) All vegetables except onions, peppers and mushrooms should be washed, sliced and blanched. Check online how long to blanch each type of vegetable you will be dehydrating.
6) All fruits should be washed, pitted and sliced. You can pretreat your fruits with lemon juice to prevent darkening while you are preparing for drying.
7) Dry the fruits and vegetables in single layers on trays.
8) Wipe of the fat of the jerky while it is drying.
9) Jerky does not store for long periods of time. If more than a month freeze or refrigerate. Or, you can seal the jerky in the Mylar pouches/bags, with the oxygen absorbers for longer storage.

Vegetable Dehydrating Chart:

Beans, green: Stem and break beans into 1-inch pieces.Blanch. Dry 6-12 hours until brittle.
Beets: Cook and peel beets. Cut into 1/4-inch pieces. Dry 3-10 hours until leathery.
Broccoli: Cut and dry 4-10 hours.
Carrots: Peel, slice or shred. Dry 6-12 hours until almost brittle.
Cauliflower: Cut and dry 6-14 hours.
Corn: Cut corn off cob after blanching and dry 6-12 hours until brittle.
Mushrooms: Brush off, don't wash. Dry at 90 degrees for 3 hours, and then 125 degrees for the remaining drying time. Dry 4-10 hours until brittle.
Onions: Slice 1/4-inch thick. Dry 6-12 hours until crisp.
Peas: Dry 5-14 hours until brittle.
Peppers, sweet: Remove seeds and chop. Dry 5-12 hours until leathery.
Potatoes: Slice 1/8-inch thick. Dry 6-12 hours until crisp.
Tomatoes: Dip in boiling water to loosen skins, peel,slice or quarter. Dry 6-12 hours until crisp.
Zucchini: Slice 1/8-inch thick and dry 5-10 hours until brittle.

Fruits Dehydrating Chart:

Apples: Peel, core and slice into 3/8-inch rings, or cut into 1/4-inch slices. Pretreat and dry 6-12 hours until pliable.
Apricots: Cut in half and turn inside out to dry. Pretreat and dry 8-20 hours until pliable.
Bananas: Peel, cut into 1/4-inch slices and pretreat. Dry 8-16 hours until pliable or almost crisp.
Blueberries: Dry 10-20 hours until leathery.
Cherries: Cut in half and dry 18-26 hours until leathery and slightly sticky.
Peaches: Peel, halve or quarter. Pretreat and dry 6-20 hours until pliable.
Pears: Peel, cut into 1/4-inch slices, and pretreat. Dry 6-20 hours until leathery.
Pineapple: Core and slice 1/4-inch thick. Dry 6-16 hours until leathery and not sticky.
Strawberries: Halve or cut into 1/4-inch thick slices. Dry 6-16 hours until pliable and almost crisp.

(The above information comes from a website "Farm Living is the Life for Me",

Remember: If using an Electric Dehydrator, follow the instructions in the manual and the charts for how long and what temperature to dehydrate.

Weekly Assignment: Adding Fruits and Vegetables to our Food Storage:

This week add more fruits and vegetables to your Food Storage. Only add what your family will eat. Store in a variety of ways, commercially canned fruits and vegetables, frozen, freeze-dried and canned in Mason jars. Do not add fruit juices at this time. We will be working on that one later one.

Food Storage Ideas:

In an emergency situation when there is no electricity, use your refrigerator food first, then your frozen food. Try to open your refrigerator and freezer as little as possible, it will keep the food longer. Once you have used this food, then move onto your canned and dehydrated and freeze-dried food. Save the vegetable liquid from the canned vegetables to help rehydrate the dehydrated and freeze-dried foods. That way you will use less stored water and have more water for drinking. Note: If you have a generator, run the refrigerator/freezer for 1 hour, then unplug the refrigerator/freezer. It will keep it cold for about 23 hours as along as you do not open the doors often. Repeat every day until the electricity is restored.

Emergency Preparedness Ideas:

While our grandson had a great idea to put his clothes, shoes and a flashlight by his bed, I would like to add to his great preparation. Each family member should have an extra large zip lock bag tied to his bed leg with some sturdy shoes, maybe some pants and a t-shirt, a working flashlight with extra batteries, a pair of extra glasses wrapped in a wash cloth, for those who wear glasses, and a crowbar inside the bag. The reason for tying it to the bed leg, in an earthquake, as you know, thing tend to move around and would be hard to find in the dark. This way all you would need to do is reach for the zip lock bag tied to your bed leg. The crowbar is to help you get out of a door or window that might be blocked or jammed.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Weekly Assignment, Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness Ideas (Week of August 12th)

Hi Carson Ward Family, Family and Friends,

Are you feeling overwhelmed when it comes to Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness? Many of us do feel this way, but there is no need to be overwhelmed! Last Sunday in our Relief Society meeting a sister shared a very interesting story about Food Storage and being prepared.

When she was a young girl her family joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Her mother soon learned about Food Storage and being prepared for emergencies, or whatever came their way. They did not have a lot of  money, like many of us, but each week she put away one or more cans of food. Before she knew it she had created some Food Storage for their family. When a huge hurricane hit her country, many lives were lost and their possessions. Because her mother had put away food, a little at a time, they had enough food to eat for a month. What a wonderful blessing for their family! Her mother had listened to the council of the church leaders and was obedient to their council.

That is all it takes, no need to feel overwhelmed and that you have to do it all at once, it is a life time process. Just putting away a couple of cans or packages of food each time you go grocery shopping will provide your family peace of mind in knowing that you are being obedient to the council of our church leaders and striving to build up your Food Storage and Emergency Supplies. You and your family will be richly blessed.

Share your story--

If anyone has a similar story about an experience with Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness, please email me your story at I would like to share a story once in awhile in this blog that will help others in their preparation. It is great to hear about others successes and struggles with Food Storage and the blessings that have come from striving to be prepared. Names will be keep anonymous.

Weekly FREE Monthly Giveaway Drawing Question---What is the best way to add to our Food Storage and Emergency Supplies? Please email me your answer to Please include your name if not in your email address.

August Goals: Canning, Freezing and Dehydrating and Adding Fruits and Vegetables to our Food Storage

Canning your Fruits and Tomatoes/Vegetables:

The preparation for canning your fruits and tomatoes is much like the preparation for freezing them. Canning other types of vegetables have to be canned in a Canning Pressure Cooker. Follow the instructions in how to prepare your tomatoes is last week's blog posting on Freezing. Once you have selected good ripe (not to soft) tomatoes, washed them thoroughly, blanched them to remove the peeling, and peeled and diced them, follow the instructions below for canning tomatoes. Warning: You cannot can other types of vegetables by the Water-Bath process, they are not acidic enough

1. Place your diced (or whole, halved or quartered) tomatoes in a large pot. Boil them for five minutes, be careful to not burn the bottom of the pot or the tomatoes. If you use whole tomatoes you will need to add water to cover them and place the water in the canning jars since they will not produce their own liquid.

2. While the tomatoes are boiling, place your canning jars in hot boiling water. Place the caps in hot, but not boiling water (this will damage the seal) and let them sit in the hot water until you are ready for them. Do not use used caps, they may to hold the seal.

3. Removed the canning jars from the boiling water with the jar lifter and set them on a towel out of a draft.
4. If using pint jars place 1 tablespoon of lemon juice in the bottom of the jar. If using quart jars, place 2-3 tablespoons of lemon juice in the bottom of the jars. If you are concerned about the bitter taste of the lemon juice, you can add a little sugar to the tomatoes to sweeten them.
5. With the funnel on the jar, pour enough hot tomatoes into the jars just below the bottom of rim.

6. Run a plastic spatula around the inside of the jars to release any air bubbles. Add more tomatoes if needed.

7. Wipe off the edge of the jars with a clean soft towel before sealing them.

8. Seal the jars with the hot caps and lids. Never use used caps and or bent lids. Buy new ones each time you can. Screw them on tight, put not too tight.

9. Have the water in your Water-Bath Canning pot already hot. Place the canning rack in the bottom of the Water-Bath Canning pot, using the canning jar lifter, place the canning jars of tomatoes on the rack so they do not touch each other. Do not stack on top of each other.
10. Cover the jars with more hot water, from another pot of boiling water, until they are covered about 3-4 inches above the top of the canning jars.
11. Cover the pot with the lid, bring to a hard boil and boil for 45 minutes, making sure the water stays above the lids.
12. Remove the canning jars from the pot with your jar lifter and place on a towel out of a draft. This prevents the jars from cracking if put on a cold surface.

13. After awhile you will start to hear the lids "ping". This means your jars are sealed. Leave the jars there until they have completely cooled.
14. Once they are cooled check the lids to make sure they are not springy by pushing in the middle of the caps. If they are, you can do the process again, or put them in the refrigerator and use them within a week.
15. Place labels on the jars with the name of the item inside and the date. Place in a cool, dry dark place. They should keep for 1-3 years.

16. When you open the jars make sure you smell the fruit and tomatoes to make sure they do not smell spoiled. If they do, throw them away immediately.
Note: This same process works for fruits. Check online, or in a canning cookbook, how long to boil them for the type of fruit you are using. This is also a great way to can fruit jams and jellies. Check online for great fruit jams and jellies recipes.

I did not find Water-Bath Canning difficult, just time consuming! But what a great reward you receive once you are done canning. This is just another way to preserve food for your Food Storage. Remember, when canning fruits and tomatoes/vegetables, purchase them when in season to save money. If you have a vegetable garden or fruit trees, this is a great way to preserve them for future use. Citric fruit like lemons, limes, oranges, tangerines, I squeeze out the juice and freeze the juice in freezer double zip lock bags.

Next week I will discuss dehydrating your fruits and vegetables.

Weekly Assignment--Adding Fruits and Vegetable:

Continue to add, each week, some commercially canned, freeze-dried, canned, packaged or frozen fruits and vegetables to your Food Storage. I like to store them in a variety of ways. Watch for sales. To determine how much your family eats, keep track for a month and then multiply by the number of months you are working towards. Remember, if you store freeze-dried fruits and vegetables you will need to store more water to rehydrated them.

Food Storage Ideas:

Our Los Angeles Dry-Pack Cannery--

While giving some service hours at our Bishops Storehouse in Los Angeles on Thursday, Brother Cuppett and I had a few minutes to go over to the Dry-Pack Cannery and speak with Elder and Sister Wooley who run the Cannery, what an awesome, but sad, experience.  A few Sundays ago Elder Wooley spoke in our Sacrament Meeting about our Dry-Pack Cannery. I had not been there since it was remodeled. It is clean, bright and air-conditioned! While we were there, only one person with her daughter came in to do some canning. How sad we are not using our dry-pack cannery! I am at fault on this one too, but I am going to change that! I am afraid if we do not start using our cannery, they may close it down. It use to be open Tuesday through Saturday, now it is only open Tuesday and Thursday from 9am-2pm by appointment only and Saturdays from 9am-2pm, no appointment needed. Trying to escape the summer heat, get together with some friends or another family and do some Food Storage canning for your family. The prices are much cheaper than ordering from food storage companies. See what is available to can there and their prices by going to, click on Home Storage Center Order Form and print the form. You can either put your freeze-dried food in the #10 metal cans or the Mylar pouches. Call the cannery and make an appointment, take your family (14 years old and up) and can some food for your Food Storage. What a great summer activity!

Warning! It was just announced that WalMart will start selling genetically engineered/modified sweet corn. Monsanto’s, an American multinational agricultural biotechnology corporation, genetically modified sweet corn is resistant to a common herbicide, which allows farmers to kill weeds without killing the corn. It also contains a toxin that fends off certain pests. Be careful in what you are purchasing. When purchasing fruit and vegetable seeds make sure they are not genetically modified, you want heirloom/hybrid fruit and vegetables seeds. Check all vegetable cans to see if they are genetically modified or heirloom/hybrid, unfortunately, it is not always stated on our canned and packaged foods. Organic fruits and vegetables are your best bet.

Emergency Preparedness Ideas:

"The time has come to get our houses in order ... there is a portent of stormy weather ahead to which we had better give heed."     President Gordon B.  Hinckley 168th General Conference, October 1998