Archive for August, 2011

The People We Don’t Want to Be

I saw this (The link has been removed…it basically offered a bunker spot for $200,000 for a single and $400,000 for a family, and to contact him right away) on Craigslist today, and it says ‘scam’ all over it.  It makes me wonder at the motivation of the sellers of these ‘bunker condos”.  For $200k or $400k, any one of us could buy a rural piece of property, bury our own bunker, and (based on back of the napkin math) fill it with several years worth of food, water, and fuel.  So why would I want to entrust my future to others, crammed in an underground complex with 50 other scared families, raising the possibility of mental breaks, diseases, and random violence?

Sounds too much like the setup to a bad horror movie for me!




08 2011

Updates: Long, Hot Summer Edition

My apologies for the slow pace of new posts recently, but its been a bear of a summer.   The good news is business is up in the wake of inflation news and the Dow upheavals, but it makes it harder to fit everything else in!  Also, I’ve spent 5 days working on the water project this month,  as we do our best to practice what we preach.  Again, that’s a good thing; however, some days the changes in velocity of SurvivalClub activities makes for some very long days (We went from taking a year to plan the project to now having all hands on deck for as many days as possible to implement it!)

Still, busy is good.  Some other bits of news:

  • We finally got the ‘Light and Fire‘ section of Discount Mylar Bags up and running with a couple of cool products!  The candle lanterns are an excellent, cheap and portable way to always have some light on hand (#5 on the list of things one must have to be prepared).  The kit comes with the very cool pop-up Lantern, 4 9-hour candles and a carry sack.  They also have a hook and chain, so we have taken to hanging ours on a nail on the porch.  It puts off just enough light to have a good conversation, but not as much as our regular outside lights which attracts a gazillion bugs.
  • Also in the section are a Light My Fire Firesteel, the premier brand in the category, and supercool storm-proof matches.  I usually recommend a standard Bic Lighter for most folks fire needs, but if you’re in the woods or going on what could be an extended excursion, Firesteel can’t be beat for ability to throw sparks (and it also has an emergency whistle on it as well).  The matches on the other hand, are something I would heartily recommend everyone get a set of.  We made a silly 30-second spot on Youtube about the matches, which really do burn under water!  They come in a gasketed waterproof container with an extra striking surface and would be a great addition to any 72-hour kit.  In general, lighters don’t work well when wet, so having storm-proof matches on hand can really come in handy in certain conditions.
  • In our ‘Gear’ section (just one item for now) is a 1-Liter ClipCap Aluminum Water Bottle.  It’s cap allows it to attach to almost anything.  We keep one on the stroller when we take the dogs for a walk (don’t ask), and I like them better for hiking because I often lose my Nalgenes because the drink pockets mesh on my backpack is too light to keep them securely attached.  If you’ve watched any Survivorman, you also know that Aluminum bottles are great to boil water or (in a pinch) soup in if you needed to purify some for any reason.
  • We’re pulling the trigger on the trailer purchase I mentioned last month and will be taking our first trip with it in late September (our In-Laws will be staying at our house for any burglar types), going up to see our families in Connecticut.  We’ll be taking 95 up to New England starting in Virginia, so anyone who wants to save some shipping on a big order, let me know and if we travel through your town we’ll be glad to stop!=)
  • We are still working with UPS trying to figure out why the rate structure on our contract is not actually working with our shipping account; that’s why we haven’t had the smaller sets of Gamma Seal lids available yet.
  • I am having a lot of fun spending a few minutes a day on our Facebook page.  We gave away a $50 gift certificate to the store at 50 friends and $100 at 100 friends.  We’ll do the same every time we hit another hundred friends (200, 300, etc) up to 1000; if we ever hit the 1000 friend milestone I promise to do something special to celebrate the occasion!!  So if you use Facebook and haven’t yet, please Like us! (You can also find us by searching ‘Advice and Beans’ on Facebook)

That’s all for now, stay safe and prepared everyone!


08 2011

Storing Some Pasta

Seeing the inflation occurring as well as the continued economic malaise, our family has continued to add to our food and other stores regularly.  We picked up 10 pounds of pasta and another 30 cans of vegetables this weekend at Publix from their Buy-one-Get-one section.  That’s pretty much the only way we buy things now, as we’re just adding to our stores and not trying to fill a pantry.

This month, we’re also going to do a formal written tracking of all expenditures in the household, from the mortgage and utilities to a candy-bar at the gas station.  I recommend everyone do it at least 1 month a year, as there is no better way to find the holes in your budget.  When I first did it over 10 years ago, I found I was spending more than double my electric bill eating fast food!

I had planned on doing a little Youtube thing on our pasta storage, but my wife beat me to it and was already done when I got back from the warehouse yesterday!  She did up 12 bags of pasta, 24 lbs.  She also did a bunch of dog food that had been collecting, and that was another 40 lbs.  I always find it odd it seems like we put away more food for our two dogs that combined weigh 11 lbs, than my wife and I do for ourselves.  We will use up the dog food within a year or two as it has oils in it that can go bad, but we will get a lot more shelf life out of it being stored properly.



08 2011