Category Archives: Health And Wellness

Insurance for Preppers

My Super Bowl Insurance Commercial

Like a handful of you know, my little girl has been back in the hospital for the past 5 days.

For as much as that sucks, it isn’t anywhere near as terrifying as it was last summer.

This time, she’s just in the hospital because she’s sick and can’t keep food down. The fact that she can’t keep food down is extremely problematic for her low already blood sugar, so the upshot is we have to have her on an IV, and therefore the hospital.

Even though I’m pretty sure this will set me back a few shekels, I’m really relieved right about now that I have good insurance.

I’ve always kind of felt like insurance is a lose-lose situation (and I kind of still do), but I will say that when given the chance between paying $5,000 or $35,000…. I’ll take the former.

100 1255 1024x576 My Super Bowl Insurance Commercial

Our “treat wagon” complete with puke bucket ice chest!

Insurance can be a complicated and extremely situation-specific thing, and I’m definitely not credentialed to sell you on any kind of plan, so I’m not going to do that.

Today I mostly just wanted to take a quick break out of my Super Bowl Sunday to show you in real time, one particular moment that I’m thrilled that I have insurance, and remind you to at least insure the biggies (life, health, home, car).

After you’re rolling in the Benjis, you can always come back and get policies for your collection of art, firearms, and your 1 million dollar J-Lo booty.

Prep On,

-Dan

Resources:

  • One pretty solid piece of insurance to consider is renter’s insurance (obviously for the renters in the group). It can be extremely low cost, and adds a pretty sturdy level of protection for your personal property in the event of a disaster, theft, etc. You can start by checking with the usual suspects: State Farm, Geico, Allstate, Progressive.
  • Jack Spirko recently did a pretty interesting Survival Podcast episode with and insurance ADJUSTER (not somebody trying to sell you a policy, but explaining how claims and reports get sorted out). Check it out here.
Prepping Body Mind Spirit

The Prep Nobody is Talking About: My Car Breakdown and Clinical Insanity

On my way back from California for Christmas last month, my car broke down. Victorville, CA for those of you who are familiar with it. Yuck.

It was 6 pm and places were closed for the night.

And we were incredibly fortunate.

Why?

Because we broke down in pretty much the last city before Las Vegas-2 hours away. We also broke down right next to a hotel that we could stay the night at, which just also happened to be about 2 blocks from a Pep Boys where we got the car fixed bright and early the next morning.

The whole thing was less than $100 out the door, everybody was safe, and our delay ended up not mattering at all.

Before we left on our drive, my little 8 year old nephew said a prayer for us, asking God to keep us safe on the road and that we “wouldn’t get into any wrecks.”

Was his prayer answered? Yes! In what could’ve been a REALLY bad situation, we came out with barely a scratch.

But his prayer did more than that, it was a good reminder to me that there is a spiritual side to our lives, and our “prepping.”

Prepping: Body, Mind, and Spirit

Virtually all the voices in prepping today are talking about the “stuff” of prepping. Food, guns, solar panels, water barrels, bug out bags, and more.

But while most of us are focused squarely on the “physical”, hardly anybody is talking about spiritual or mental preparation.

As human beings, we are a 3-part deal: Body, Mind, and Spirit.

And in the same way that your body can wither and die, your mind can decay until it no longer functions, and your spirit can become weakened and vulnerable as well.

We need to concentrate on the less-frequently emphasized spiritual and mental preps more than we do.

If  you are someone that believes in God, than exercise that belief. Drink deeply from the things that make you feel closer to him.

If you are someone that believes in praying, than you should be doing it frequently, and with sincerity. If there are other elements to your spirituality-traditions, certain people, music, reading, going to church services-DO THEM!

This post isn’t about “converting” you to something or telling you exactly “how” you should be spiritual, it’s about reminding you to exercise what it is that you already believe but aren’t doing regularly.

Let’s talk about the mind.

You need to EXERCISE IT.

Your mind is a living thing that needs to be fed, stretched, and used in new ways all the time.

If you’re not constantly learning, problem solving and putting yourself into new challenges, your mind will atrophy the same way your body or spirit will.

For many of us, it’s reading. Some people take a new class at the community college. Other people do chess, crosswords, or sudoku. Some folks write. Push your mind to grow and expand into uncharted waters. Your mind can handle it and will surprise you.

How do you exercise your mind and spirit? Any new directions you’re thinking about?

-Dan

Special Needs Children

Prepping With Special Needs Children – Daily Prep Episode 335

A couple months ago, many of you guys remember that my little girl was in the hospital for about a week. It was a scary time and we really appreciate all the thoughts, prayers, and concern everybody showed to us. Today we thought we’d take a quick second to give everyone an update on Penny, and briefly talk about prepping with special needs children.

So our daughter Penny has a genetic condition known as Glycogen Storage Disease (GSD). It basically amounts to the fact that she can only metabolize and use 1 form of sugar–Glucose.

Other sugars (fructose, sucrose, lactose, etc) just get packed into her liver and cannot be extracted later. This causes the liver to get bigger and bigger and could eventually lead to Continue reading

254

Daily Prep Episode 254: So…Did My House Have Radon?

A couple of weeks back, I posted a prepisode on how I was testing my house for Radon. Radon is a poisonous gas which can cause lung cancer and a variety of other ailments.

So, I just got my results back from the lab…

NO RADON! icon smile Daily Prep Episode 254: So...Did My House Have Radon?

The EPA recommends that any house with more than 4 picocuries per liter conduct a long term test for more accurate results. My house only came in at like 1.6 picocuries/L so I’m good.

If you do have Radon in your house, it’s not the end of the world (hopefully), but it may involve some construction projects to tighten up the ship.

Anyways, for Jaime, Snax and I, the crisis has been averted.

Hope the same for you guys!

-Dan

Resources:

Check out my original post here.

Get a Radon test here or a long-term test kit here.

 

243 sprouts

Daily Prep Episode 243: Seed Sprouting for Preppers

Now that my garden has officially kicked the bucket for the season, I’ve decided to try my hand at a little sprouting.

Sprouts are cheap, easy to grow, and contain a lot of nutrition. And, you can sprout almost anything! Today I’m making an easy sprouter out of a canning jar, and some plastic needlepoint screen from walmart.

What to Sprout:

  • Pulses (legumes; pea family): alfalfa, clover, fenugreek, lentil, pea, chickpea, mung bean and soybean (bean sprouts).
  • Cereals: oat, wheat, maize (corn), rice, barley, rye, kamut and then quinoa, amaranth and buckwheat (these last three are used as cereal even if botanically they are not)
  • Oilseeds: sesame, sunflower, almond, hazelnut, linseed, peanut.
  • Brassica (cabbage family)
  • broccoli, cabbage, watercress, mustard, mizuna, mustard, radish and daikon (kaiware sprouts): rocket (arugula), tatsoi, turnip, watercress.
  • Umbelliferous vegetables (parsley family) – these may be used more as microgreens than sprouts: carrot, celery, fennel, parsley.
  • Allium (onions) – cannot really distinguish between microgreens: onion, leek, green onion (me-negi in Japanese cuisine)
  • Other vegetables and herbs: spinach, lettuce, milk thistle, lemon grass

What Not to Sprout:

  • Tomato
  • Potato
  • Paprika
  • Aubergine
  • Paprika
  • Rhubarb
  • Or ANY seeds that have been chemically treated for pesticides.

Resources:

Mumm’s Sprouting Seeds–Seeds, Equipment, and TONS of info!

Sprout People–lots of exotic sprouting seeds for purchase (site is a little hectic–they say the moved to a new cleaner looking one, but I couldn’t access it)

241 radon

Daily Prep Episode 241: Is Your House Contaminated With Radon?

You might have heard of “Radon” before, without knowing exactly what it is.

Radon is a radioactive gas that’s released as a natural by-product of uranium breaking down. Because of it’s radioactivity, it’s very dangerous when inhaled. It causes lung cancer and claims the lives of roughly 20,000 Americans a year.

In areas where Radon is prevalent, it can seep into your house through cracks in the foundation, walls, pipes or wells. And because it’s odorless and invisible, it’s very difficult to know if your house is contaminated with it, unless you run a test.

Radon tests kit can be purchased at your local home improvement store for about $10-15 and then sent in to a lab for processing for about $25-30. These tests are very simple to conduct–just a matter of opening a couple of indicators and leaving them undisturbed in your house for 3-4 days.

Radon is fairly common along the Wasatch front where I live, so my wife and I are running a test this week.

Keep you posted,

-Dan

229 Flu Shot

Daily Prep Episode 229: Do Flu Shots Really Help?

With the change in weather, it’s time for a reminder to get your flu shot.

Flu shots are inexpensive ($20-30 if not covered by your insurance), can be administered over the counter, and protect you specifically against the prevalent virus strains for the current year.

If you add it all up, it’s a no brainer.

Small children, pregnant women and the elderly are particularly at risk and should jump on this!

-Dan

117

Daily Prep Episode 117: How To Keep Your Heart Alive

And no, I’m not talking about Cupid and falling in love.

Today I’m taking a moment to slow down and breathe deeply–IMHO, it can do just as much to keep you alive as the canned food in your basement.

Resources:

52 Proven Stress Relievers–http://shareitfitness.wordpress.com/2010/05/28/52-proven-stress-relievers/

 

98

Daily Prep Episode 98: 4 Drugs to Beat The Cold Season

A couple weeks ago, I was in the throws of a serious head cold. 

Standing in the middle of the local CVS, I again asked myself, “which pain med is the best for a headache?” I know that all pain meds have different pros and cons, but in my 30 years on the planet, haven’t really bothered learning which are best for specific ailments.

In today’s prepisode, I interview Mrs. Urbivalist about 4 different kinds of pain reliever drugs.

  • Asprin
  • Ibruprofen
  • Naproxin
  • Acetaminophen
91

Daily Prep Episode 91: How To Save An Avulsed Tooth

You probably never knew that “avulsed” is a fancy word for “knocked out”, but then again, I didn’t either.

This week I’m hosting my long time friend and 3rd year USC dental student Sean.

In catching up on some of his curriculum, he dropped some knowledge on me about how to save a tooth that has been avulsed.

I was lucky enough to get him on film with us and walk us through a couple of the finer points.

72

Daily Prep Episode 72: Review of The Hi Tec Altitude Ultra WPi

Gear Review Wednesday!

Today we’re checking out some of what makes the Hi Tec Altitude Ultra WPi a great boot.

Having weathered a couple “mock bug outs” and some seriously cold weather in my tennis shoes, I know the value of some good boots!

DSC03156 300x225 Daily Prep Episode 72: Review of The Hi Tec Altitude Ultra WPi

DSC03157 300x225 Daily Prep Episode 72: Review of The Hi Tec Altitude Ultra WPi

DSC03158 300x225 Daily Prep Episode 72: Review of The Hi Tec Altitude Ultra WPi

DSC03159 300x225 Daily Prep Episode 72: Review of The Hi Tec Altitude Ultra WPi

DSC03160 300x225 Daily Prep Episode 72: Review of The Hi Tec Altitude Ultra WPiDSC03161 300x225 Daily Prep Episode 72: Review of The Hi Tec Altitude Ultra WPi

56

Daily Prep Episode 56: How To Properly Clean And Store a Hydration Bladder

Cleaning A Hydration Bladder

My hydration bladder has had water residue in it since I went camping with Cody, and after a couple weeks it’s starting to get kinda skanky.

In this video, I give you a look at how to thoroughly clean and store your hydration bladder. It’s a 4 part process:

  1. Take the hydration bladder apart
  2. Scrub everything with a baking soda/water mixture
  3. Rinse with water/lemon juice (so it doesn’t taste like plastic or old water)
  4. Allow to dry for a day or more, so there is no wetness inside the bladder
54

Daily Prep Episode 54: How To Grow An Indoor Vegetable Garden

Indoor Vegetable Garden

The growing season in Utah is all but over.

But I’m not ready to stop growing.

So at long last, I finally put together my first indoor vegetable garden. It’s not pretty, and I’m sure it will be a learning experience on several levels, but I’m hopeful that I’ll at least get something to grow.

Growing Vegetables Under Light

The biggest issue with growing anything indoors (and especially vegetables) is getting lighting that is bright enough for plant processes to work, particularly pollination.

To combat this, I’m using 2 high efficiency T-8 bulbs in a shop light fixture. The shop light can be raised as the plants grow, so that the lights consistently remain just a few inches above the tops of the plant leaves.

Other than that, I’ve used a cheap and quickly constructed 4 x 1 x 1 pine box, and the 3 part soil that Mel Bartholomew outlines in his book, Square Foot Gardening.

Total cost for everything (light fixture, bulbs, lumber, vermiculite, peat moss, steer manure compost, seeds, etc.) is roughly $80.

Bon Voyage.

47

Daily Prep Episode 47: 2 Crucial Duties of Your Cold Weather Base Layer

The tights Prepisode.

Since I did my 72 hour urban bug out earlier this year, I’ve received a handful of comments and emails from Cody in Boise (Urbivalist reader and friend) to join him in Boise for some outdoor survival/recreation.

It looks like it will finally happen next week-even though the summer has passed. Since we got our first little snow flurry today, I’m thinking more than ever about preparing for the cold weather.

Today I give you a look at a couple important principles related to a cold weather base layer.