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Get Prepped Newsletter: March 16, 2012

Ready Nutrition’s weekly newsletter focusing on getting you ready for life’s unexpected emergencies.



Hello Everyone,

I want to be the first to say, “Welcome to your weekend!” I know you must be tired from your work week, so I want to invite you to sit down, get comfortable and leisurely read this week’s newsletter. You deserve it!

Remember, that we would love to hear your preparedness stories on Ready Nutrition. It only takes 60 seconds to make a difference and help our community become more resourceful and ultimately, more prepared. So, get those stories together – we can’t wait to hear from you!

I have been looking forward to writing about this week’s Prep of the Week for a while now. As boring as some of you may think that essential cooking items are, their versatility packs a punch! In our 37th week, we will discuss how your basic kitchen supplies can be used in ways other than intended. For instance, did you know that you can make an emergency antiseptic using baking soda? Or that you can put corn starch on insect bites?  You can even apply it as a burn treatment. Interested? Well, keep reading, because I have all kinds of tips that I want to share with you!

We want to help get you and your family on the right track to preparedness. Using a food storage calculator, like the one at Ready Nutrition, can help you learn how much food you need stored for an emergency. Moreover, help out a friend and send the 52-Weeks to Preparedness series.

If you haven’t already, follow us on Twitter or Facebook. I love to interact with the preparedness community, because after all, we are all in this together!

Best Wishes,

Tess Pennington

Be the change you wish to see in the world.




Week 37 of 52: Essential Baking Needs

When I first began prepping, I had just bought all of the recommended items for a short-term food supply. After carefully stocking the items on our storage shelf, I sat and looked admiringly at our meager supply imagining all the ways it was going to pull us through a hard time.

Then, a thought crept into my mind: I began to wonder how on earth was I going to use all these supplies. Who uses a pound of yeast? Or two pounds of baking powder? Folks, this was the moment that sealed the deal for me. This was when I realized that I didn’t have to use two pounds of baking powder for baking, I could find another way to use it! And for that matter, I bet that a lot of other items that I had purchased could be used in ways other than their original purposes. That was when I got my hands on every book and website I could find on alternative uses for these items. Inevitably, this is when I went loco for prepping!

Our preps are our lifeline and we must know how to get the most use out of them. Since most of us have limited shelf space, it is only logical to find products that will perform multiple jobs for us. The following is a list of kitchen staples that deserve a space on your emergency food shelves. Keep in mind that in an extended emergency, these items may be very useful in a bartering situation. Remember, to print out or save any pertinent information to put in your preparedness binder.

Baking Soda 

  • Natural antacid
  • Dental care
  • Electrolyte powder
  • Emergency antiseptic
  • Natural cleaner
  • Cleans off rust
  • Can be used in treating scalding, to prevent blistering and scarring. Cover the scalded area with a liberal layer of sodium bicarbonate and water paste and seek medical assistance
  • Can be applied to skin irritations that occur from poison oak, poison ivy and sumac

Baking Powder

  • Eliminates odors
  • Natural cleaning agent
  • Draws out insect stings and jelly fish venom
  • Keeps ants away from the house


  • One of the top bartering items
  • Eliminates odors
  • Natural cleaning agent
  • Sea salt has antibacterial and medicinal properties


Baking Yeast

Brewers Yeast

  • Making alcohol
  • Nutritional supplement
  • Assists diabetics in controlling their blood sugar level
  • Helps control high cholesterol level
  • Is a natural flea control for pets


Corn Starch

  • Great for use as a dry shampoo
  • Burn treatment
  • Treatment for insect bites
  • Deodorant
  • Gets grease out of fabric
  • Cleans windows
  • Thickener for soups, sauces and gravies

Powdered Milk

  • Milk
  • Cheese
  • Sour cream
  • Whipped topping
  • Substitute for milk
  • Facial wash

Click here to learn more about these essentials and their many uses

Our ancestors’ philosophy of “make due or do without” transferred into many avenues of their life, and they were on to something. They knew the versatility of their supplies and made sure they had enough of them to get by.

We also want to get by. Some of these items may even provide a semblance of what our normal life was. And how great is it that these items are low-cost, multi-functional and readily available at practically any grocery store? Start stocking up on these items in quantity and gathering knowledge on your own on other uses for these items.

  Preps to Buy:

[In Quantity]

  • Baking Powder
  • Baking Soda
  • Yeast
  • Salt
  • Vinegar
  • Evaporated Milk
  • Powdered Milk
  • Corn Starch

Action Items:

  1. Get smart about survival and research the importance of having certain food sources in your diet.
  2. Further, research how versatile this food source can be for your food pantry and for your overall survival.
  3. Use the Ready Nutrition Food Storage Calculator to find out how many essential baking items you need to add to your storage supply.
  4. Bear in mind, daily caloric intakes are different with each person, so research how many calories you need to stay at your optimum health.
  5. Those with special needs (such as pregnant women) are advised to get more nutrition and calories daily, so keep this in mind when purchasing.
  6. Learn how to package and store your bulk foods for long-term storage.
  7. Store your purchased products in a suitable environment where it is not exposed to natural elements. Click here to learn about your food’s worst enemies.


In the Home:

As much as I would like to skip this question, I’m going to answer it. This week, the kiddos are out for Spring Break, and to say that my house is complete chaos would be an understatement. The kids collaborated and decided they had projects and plans for me to complete this week. So far, I improved a baby blanket, made a blanket/pillow set for our cat, colored pictures with my 5 year old, planted some seeds, went to the movies, took the kids to a pick strawberries at a local farm and did some baking with the older kids. Needless to say, the house cleaning has gone by the wayside. But, at least the kids are having fun! Tomorrow, we plan on making fresh strawberry jam with all the strawberries that we left over from picking.

Family Preps:

Well, I told you last week that I wanted to help my family have some supplies ready in case a disaster occurs. We bought 5 starter cases at the Latter Day Saints Warehouse. For $22 a case, the starter case has:

  • 2 #10 cans of hard red wheat
  • 2 #10 cans of white rice
  • 1 #10 can of pinto beans
  • 1 #10 can of oats

You can’t beat that deal! We need to get a few more of those, and some other supplies, but I think we are starting out on the right track.

I also bought a sprouting bag to try out. Currently, we use the mason jar method, so I’m going to experiment to see which is better.

In the Garden:

We have been doing a lot of spring cleaning in our yard this week. Now that the floors are scrubbed, the ceiling fans are dusted, it’s time to do some clean up in the yard before we move. The bushes were trimmed, banana trees chopped down, leaves raked. And I even found time to plant my salsa garden. I’m hoping that I’ll get some tomatoes and peppers in time before the move.


The Ultimate Bug Out Kit

 5 Reasons to Read The Survival Mom Book

 7 Kitchen Essentials That Deserve To Be On Your Preparedness Shelves


It’s National Earthquake and Tsunami Awareness Month!

In honor of Earthquake and Tsunami Awareness Month, we want you to be prepared for this type of disaster.

Before an earthquake, prepare by following these steps now:

1. Know how to shut off your gas by reviewing the simple instructions below.
2. Secure natural gas equipment to minimize its movement during a quake.
3. Keep combustibles like paint cans and rags away from furnace and water heater.
4. Have semi-rigid gas connectors replaced with flexible connectors.
5. Consider purchasing an earthquake shutoff valves (equipment that senses ground movement or shaking and shuts off the flow of gas automatically) through an independent contractor.

After an earthquake, follow these instructions:

1. Be sure that no flammable items have fallen or spilled near natural gas appliances.
2. If you detect a strong natural gas odor or hear gas blowing, call your gas company.
3. If you turn off your gas, leave it off and contact your gas company to have your service restored.
4. Be aware that in the event of a major emergency, increased work volumes may cause service delays. It could be days before a service technician can be scheduled to restore service at your home.
5. If you had an earthquake shutoff valve installed, you need to contact the contractor to reset the valve and relight their natural gas appliances.

If you need to have your gas service turned off, call a technician so they will provide the service for you. However, should a situation arise where you need to turn off your gas supply immediately, please follow this simple procedure:

  • Locate the shutoff valve on the riser pipe from the ground to your meter or on newer meters the service line going from your meter into the house.
  • Use an adjustable pipe or crescent-type wrench to turn the valve a quarter turn in either direction. When the valve head is parallel to the pipe, it is in the OPEN position.
  • Turn the valve head crosswise (perpendicular) to the pipe and it will be in the OFF position.
  • There are also natural gas shutoff valves on the lines fueling individual pieces of equipment.




Do you have a preparedness question? One of the perks of my job at Ready Nutrition is to address questions and/or concerns that you may have with your prepping endeavors. Feel free to ask anything that is on your mind because no question is too big or small. You can email questions to: getprepped@readynutrition.com

This week’s question addresses bugging out:


I’m going to cut to the chase. I’m getting a little nervous that what is happening over in Greece will happen here. Like a lot of people I live near a major city (The wife made me move to be closer to the grand babies). In your opinion, what signs should we look for to bug out and get out of the city? 

Frank M.


Hi Frank,

That is such a great question, and I know a lot of people are wondering the very same thing. First, it’s important to understand why we need to keep our eyes open to any signs. When we are aware of the signs to look for, we can make better decisions for dealing with an impending disaster, be it natural or man made. For instance, if a person is already prepared for a disaster, they won’t be waiting in lines full of stressed out people or have to fight their way through a grocery store, or dealing with mass evacuations. A prepared person would have  all of their supplies ready, the bug out vehicle stocked and would have left the city before the disaster was imminent.

Some signs to be watchful of include:

  1. Wars over resources
  2. Exorbitant debt for country and countries around the world
  3. Hyper inflation
  4. Government corruption
  5. Currency manipulation
  6. Stock market manipulation
  7. Bank corruption
  8. High unemployment rates
  9. Civil unrest
  10. Bank runs
  11. Long gas lines
  12. Barriers around country’s borders
  13. Militarizing the police force
  14. Increased military and police presence in the streets and the community.
  15. Food shortages
  16. Long lines of people getting supplies from grocery stores or home improvement stores
In all honesty, Frank, many of the signs are already present. All we can do at this point is prepare, and keep preparing. My advice to you is to trust your gut. When you see enough of the signs and your gut is telling you to bug out, then it’s time. Until that point, keep your eyes open and be watchful of the situations at hand.
If you want to hear a first hand account of someone who went through SHTF school – the hard way, I encourage you to sign up for Selco’s “One Year in Hell Survival Course” at SHTF School. For those of you unfamiliar with Selco, he witnessed and survived one of the toughest survival scenarios to date: the Balkan wars that occurred in his country between 1992-1995. In the online course:
  • He gives a first hand account of the signs and events that led to the war
  • The horror that occurred during  the war
  • How things changed afterwards
  • Provides lists of supplies needed for survival
  • Has a tactical video on secure movement and sniper information
  • A home defense video
  • And gives some great overall SHTF preparedness advice.
I just finished the course and was amazed at what this man and his family went through and what I learned as a result. His knowledge and insight give us the best account of what to expect in a SHTF scenario.

Thanks so much for your question. And best of luck to you and your family.

Best Wishes,


Tess Pennington

Be the change you wish to see in the world.

This article was originally published at Ready Nutrition™ on March 16th, 2012

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