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How to collect birch sap

29 Jan

This is a description how to collect birch sap from your own birch as a beverage for a family of four.

During the summer, the birch tree stores nourishment for the next period of growth in its roots. The following spring, this nourishment rises as sap through the trunk up to the branches.
The birch tree emits sap only for a short period of time (about four weeks) during spring. That period starts when the snow has melted away and the day-temperature reaches some degrees above freezing point. The rise of the sap stops immediately when the tree comes into leaf.
During sap-rising, a big old birch can give 15-20 liters per day, but this requires a tapping-hole of 5 cm diameter and 10 cm depth. The birch will endure such treatment only once, maybe twice in its lifetime.

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72 Hour Kit is Essential for Any Emergency

28 Jan

Hot water for free–from the wood cook stove!

22 Jan

Original post from http://sustainablepreparedness.com
One of the most multi-purpose tools on the homestead is a wood cook stove.  Ours not only cooks the food and keeps the house toasty warm; it also heats our hot water!
Wood cook stove range boiler hot water systemThe two main components, aside from the wood cook stove, are a water coil (#6 & #7 on the pictures below) which is a pipe that runs through the fire box to heat the water, and a range boiler (picture on left) which is a large tank that holds the hot water before and after it circulates through the wood cook stove.

Active vs Passive

There are a couple of variations on the “hot water from your wood stove” scene.  One involves the use of an inline electric circulating pump to force water through the water coil; the other uses the simple principle of heat rising to accomplish the same thing.  It is called a thermosiphon system.  “Active” systems (using an electric pump) have some advantages, but in the opinion of this writer, not enough to offset their negatives for most people.  An active system can produce as much as 50% more hot water than a passive (thermosiphon) system, and since more water movement takes place, there is less chance of water overheating and creating dangerous pressure levels.  But anytime you unnecessarily involve a mechanical or electric device in essential systems, you are asking for trouble.  For instance, if electricity is lost during winter, you would have to potentially shut the wood stove down or dismantle the hot water system to prevent dangerously high temperatures and pressures.  And some inline pumps have a poor reputation for reliability.  Even if you are on a renewable energy system with a very efficient DC inline pump, it still uses electricity throughout the day while the stove is running, and that can add up.  Bottom line?  Whenever possible, keep it simple and go with a thermosiphon system!  And that is what we are going to focus on in this post. Continue reading

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Mint Tin Mini Survival Kit

20 Jan

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Delicious Lip Balm Recipe

16 Jan

Makes 1 1/2 ounces

  • 4 tsp grated Beeswax
  • 8 tsp Coconut Oil, melted
  • 6 tsp  Apricot Kernel Oil
  • 7 drops Sweet Orange Oil 
  • 7 drops Lemon Essential Oil
    You can choose any essential oil of your choice to suit your mood….enjoy ! I tend to pick citrus blends because they are so uplifting.

In a double boiler combine:Beeswax
Coconut Oil
Apricot Kernel Oil
Gently melt over low heat until everything is liquid and stir to combine.
Remove from the heat and stir in the essential oils.
Carefully pour into lip balm empty lip tubes and allow them to set up firmly for one hour.

Beeswax Yellow Honeywax Pearls (1 lbs)

10 Black 0.15 oz. Lip Balm Empty Containers

Sweet Orange 100% Pure Therapeutic Grade Essential Oil- 10 ml

 Lemon Essential Oil. 10 ml. 100% Pure, Undiluted, Therapeutic Grade.

Primitive Water Purification Do It Yourself Project

16 Jan

Once you find water, a major issue remains: is it pure? Is it drinkable? And if not, how to make it drinkable?

In today’s world this is a much more complex issue than it was previously. Just 20 years ago in Canada you could still drink water from the streams, rivers, and lakes in the north — for example, in northern Ontario, including northern Lake Huron and the Bruce Peninsula. However, the spread of Giardia in recent years has greatly increased the risk of drinking water straight from these sources.

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Homemade Cough Syrup…

15 Jan

Edited from original post from The Milk Mans Wife
My mom came over last night and saw the ‘jar’, tested it and said ‘Grandpa used to call this ‘snakejuice’….. Come to find out my grandpa used to make this very thing and I never new it. SO from now on its going to be ‘snakejuice’…..

Take your jar and make sure its good-n-clean and this is the rest of what you will need..

I know your first thought was the same as mine… Amish consume booze…..

My friend strolled right into the liquor part of the grocery store and snatched this off the shelf for me because, well – I am a liquor prude…. *hangs head* I admit it – a liquor virgin.. I have never tasted it and I have never tasted beer. Cant get the smell past my nose on the beer, it smells like your gonna lick a loaf of bread dough… yish

First you cut up 3-4 lemons – I had BIG ones and used 3. I then cut up 2 large onions into slices.. Continue reading

Natural Inks

14 Jan

Knowing how to make natural inks is a prepping skill that everyone should know. In the months or years after SHTF you are going to need to know how to make these ink pigments so that written communication still continues on. Also using natural surroundings and plants to create pigment, you can learn to make dyes for clothing and other needs. Here is one example of how to make ink. mind you there are hundreds of ways to do it, and veggies and herbs/flowers to use.

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Condoms for Survival?

9 Jan

11 Ways A Condom Can Save Your Life: Multi-functional survival uses for a CONDOM.

People have been packing them in mini survival kits for as long as I can remember – using them primarily as an expandable WATER CONTAINER.  Don’t worry, I’ll get into details later.  While a little taboo, I’ll ask that you set aside any preconceived notions you might have about condoms.  In this post, I’ll argue that as far as  multi-functional survival uses are concerned, the condom offers an incredible BANG for your buck.  Sorry – I couldn’t resist.

I’ll break down the many uses within each CORE SURVIVAL CATEGORY.

WATER

As I’ve mentioned, including condoms in survival kits is not a new idea.  They make amazing compact water containers that can hold as much as 2 liters of water if handled properly.  They are, after all, designed to be water tight.  The elasticity of latex condoms is SHOCKING. Continue reading

Homemade Mouthwash

7 Jan

minty mouthwash recipe
1 cup distilled, filtered, or boiled water
2-3 drops peppermint essential oil
Mix together in a clean container. Shake before each use. Do not swallow. Store in a dark cupboard or medicine cabinet. (sunlight causes essential oils to lose their potency)

orange spice mouthwash recipe
1 cup distilled, filtered, or boiled water
3 drops clove essential oil
2 drops cinnamon essential oil
2 drops orange essential oil
1 drop ginger essential oil
Mix together in a clean container. Shake before each use. Do not swallow. Store in a dark cupboard or medicine cabinet. (sunlight causes essential oils to lose their potency)

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