After having many people ask for the newsletters I compiled as my church's preparedness specialist, I decided to find a way they could easily access them. It was suggested I set up a blog. So this blog began in 2011 and for 4 years there were monthly newsletters. In Jan 2015 an index for those 4 years was included. Along the way have been some other booklets for preparedness.

Recently my Stake President asked me to continue this for the stake to use. So these monthly newsletters will continue. If you have suggestions or ideas, feel free to message me or comment.

In the meantime – hope you are all a little more prepared for having visited this site! And always remember what President Thomas S Monson said: “When the time for performance arrives, the time for preparation is past.”

(Note: garden tips are for Southern Utah area - you may need to adjust according to your area's climate.)

Thursday, April 30, 2015

May 2015

Click here for a complete copy of May 2015 Back to Basics Newsletter.

If April Showers bring May Flowers then what do May Flowers bring?  The children’s riddle says – pilgrims! But in terms of preparedness – those “May Flowers”, the result of careful planning and preparing – bring peace of mind and no worries. Truly – if we are prepared – we shall not fear! Each month we can take stock of where we stand in our preparedness. Are we moving forward? Have we stalled? Do we need to jump start our efforts? Take an honest assessment of where you are and where you need to be in terms of preparedness. Then take the steps necessary to bring you and your family the peace of preparedness. And remember that being prepared is a journey and ongoing. There is really no destination we arrive at that says “you are here!” Preparedness, and the peace that it brings, is really a way of life.

In this month's newsletter:
Provident Living: History's Preparedness Lessons: Learning to weather lifes storms from those who lived through the Great Depression.
Disaster Prep: Unusual (or less thought of) items to store: Comfot items, how to books, phone, clocks, windup light/radio, Solar light, sewing items, cloth diapers, wagon, immunizations, camp cooking, canning items, slippers.
In the Southern Utah Garden: Planting veggies, weeding garden, mulching rows, spray fruit trees, insecticides. 
Cooking with Food Storage: Bottle wheat and beans for healthy and inexpensive "fast food".
Family Communication Plan: Every family needs a communicatyion plan in case of emergency - discuss types, choose meeting places and code word, contact person, ID card, walkie talkie.
A Blast from the Past:  In 1976 church members were, once again, asked to get their year supply. Have you had time yet? Four church leaders encourage us to be prepared.
Spiritual Preparedness: Neil L Anderson in April 2015 conference taught about seeing the Lord's miracles in our lives, and looking to the Lord's Second Coming.

Click here for a complete copy of May 2015 Back to Basics Newsletter 

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

April 2015

Click here for a complete copy of April 2015 Back to Basics Newsletter

Easter is celebrated in April this year, and brings with it a wonderful time to reflect on new life.  Just as the resurrection brings new life, so does springtime bring new growth in the world around us. It is also a good time to bring new life to our preparedness status. The old saying “April showers brings May flowers” seems to be really the story of life. The efforts we put in to anything will bring about the rewards later. It is the same with our gardens and life – “what we sow we also reap”.   We can take stock of our food storage, 72 hour kits, provident living, and especially our spiritual preparedness. What “April Showers” do we need to apply to these areas to be able to reap the “May Flowers”?  Let us set our priorities in place and be sure to provide for our families. Small steps taken on a regular basis toward being prepared will suddenly show up as full storage shelves, emergency supplies in order, and testimonies strong and bright.  Let us start raining down those “April Showers” today!

Included in this month's newsletter:
Evacutaion! Making a plan: tips for having to evacuate your home in case of fire, flood, or other reasons.
Message from Pres. Kimball 5 days after the Teton Dam Broke in 1975: Learn from the past.
Affordable Food Storage: For about $100 you can fill your shelves with a large amount of food.
In the Southern Utah Garden: planting guide and tips, yard and lawn care tips.
Wet your whistle! - Water Storage Tips: how much to store, containers to use, water treatment, storage, and purification tips.
Spiritual and Temporal Preparedness Quotes: Dallin H Oaks, Ezra Taft Benson and Thomas S Monson give us guidance.
Disaster Prep: a local radio station for emergency info, code words for familyies, and water/72 hour kit rotation.

Click here for a complete copy of April 2015 Back to Basics Newsletter

Thursday, February 26, 2015

March 2015

Click here for a complete copy of the March 2015 Back to Basics Newsletter.

Spring has sprung! Blossoms have popped, and the weather is unpredictable. It seems like we go from summer to winter to spring all within days. The winds may howl or the sun brings beads of sweat. But that is what springtime is. It is a season that reminds us of how unpredictable life can be - and how important it is that we are prepared for whatever storms may appear! “If ye are prepared ye shall not fear” is the motto that should guide our endeavors for family preparedness. Let us plant our gardens, stock our shelves, and be ready for these days that are OUR days (Helaman 7:7-9)  If we are prepared, it will not matter if the day is a lamb or a lion – we will be ready for whatever the “season” of these “last days” may bring!

Included in this month's newsletter:
Where do I start? A Bite at a Time : 10 steps to help you get a food storage program underway.
No Time Like the Present: Quote from Emerson
In the Southern Utah Garden:  plant veggies, fertilize, divide flowers and other, make a garden diary, weeding, seeding plants indoors, and other.
Provident Living: The Family Meal:  Family mealtime can save money and bring bonus rewards for your family.
Disaster Prep: How long can you stay away from the store? Are you ready for a disaster without making a quick store run? Tips for ways to answer yes!
Hot tip: water filtration kit: first used for missionaries in countries where water is questionable - now availabel at LDS HOme Storage Centers or online at store.lds.org.
Spiritual Preparedness:  Thomas S Monson quote on standards of chuch vs standards of society.
Remember: we need to pray for moisture!

Click here for a complete copy of the March 2015 Back to Basics Newsletter.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

February 2015

(Click here for a complete copy of the February 2015 Back to Basics Newsletter.)

February is the month of “love”. Valentine’s Day lands smack in the middle of the month and gives us the opportunity to show our admiration to all of our “valentines”.  We have fond memories of the paper hearts and valentine holder’s from our grade school years. Love is in the air!  The savior has said “If ye love me keep my commandments”. Do we show our love for Christ in the way we live? One of his commandments is to “Be Prepared” as told to us by many prophets for many years. Have we followed it?  The Lord has admonished us that “if ye are prepared ye shall not fear.” When the storms of life (spiritual or temporal) come crashing in, the level of preparation that we have will determine how we weather the storm. This month as we decorate our valentines, make cookies, deliver candy, and remember our loved ones, let us remember that we show love to our family as we are prepared to care for them. And we show our love for God as we follow His command to Be Prepared.

Included in this month's newsletter:
The "Other" 72 hour kit: we will not always be at home when disaster strikes. Keep a 72 hour kit in you car and at work. A list of items to include in a car kit is listed and hints for storing it.

Disaster Prep: what if the stores were closed suddenly - are you ready? A list of things to help you be ready for sudden disturbances from keeping gas tank half full,, to shopping habits and transportation methods.

Spiritual Preparedness:  From Henry B Eyring - Do not delay... the "someday I will" can be a thief of opportunity....

In the Southern Utah Garden: February is a big month for getting the garden going - Prepare the soil, fertilize, spray fruit trees, finish pruning, plant bare-roots, transplant, and plant  cool weather veggie list.

Financial Fast: It is good for our bodies to fast monthly for both physical and spiritual benefits. How about trying a month long Financial Fast? Ideas to include are: Deal in cash, do not use credit or debit, buy necessities, no movies or entertainment, no shopping for extras, make a budget, plan what to do instead of spend, focus on what to do with your money, keep some of the habits, frugal living is rewarding. You will find simplicity truly is Provident Living!

Cooking with Food Storage: Everlasting Yeast to same money or if you are down to your last bit of yeast - us it to make a start that will last indefinitely. Recipe and instructions included.

Don't Forget to Pray: we are in the midst of a drought - lets pray for snow in the mountains and rain in the valley! Summer water depends on winter storms. Consider the listed scriptures as we fast and pray.

Click here for a complete copy of the February 2015 Back to Basics Newsletter.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

January 2015

(Click here to view and print a complete copy of the January 2015 Back to Basics Newsletter)

A New Year always brings with it the opportunity for New Beginnings. We set new goals and make new plans. Even Mother Nature is resetting the New Year with roots and seeds getting ready for a springtime debut. What a great time to make a New Beginning to our preparedness – and reset the goals, plans, and even habits of provident living for our families. The long winter nights give us time to sit down and make a plan. Take inventory of where you are, and plan for where you want to be. 
There is no time like our time – so let us seize the day (carpe diem) and… Be Prepared!

Included in this month's newsletter:
NEW YEAR - New Beginnings - The Basics- Review the list of basic food storage items and amounts needed per person (grains, legumes, milk, sugar, salt, oil, water and other)
Provident Living - Shopping the sales: Not all “sales” are created equal!! Beware buying just because it is on sale. Winter often brings case lot sales, so here are a few “sales” tips.
Disaster Prep - What to do when the lights go out: Winter time, with its long nights, is a good time to think about what you will do for light if the power goes out. Have more than one method available for different situations (candles, emergency candle in a jar, solar lights, propane lanterns extra mantles, flashlights.)
In the southern Utah Garden: Not a lot of gardening goes on in January – but lots of planning can. Grab a cup of hot chocolate, and pen and paper and go to work….(plan what to plant, garden spot, etc)
LDS Church Emergency Preparedness:What does the church officially recommend for our preparedness?  In the online LDS web site, church members are encouraged to prepare a simple emergency plan. Items to consider are listed.
Cooking with food storage: Orson Hyde said  “There is more salvation and security in wheat, than in all the political schemes of the world. …”  Recipes and ideas to use your wheat as wheat berry cereal, cracked wheat, breads, sprouted wheat, and other ideas are included.
Spiritual Preparedness: The prophets have encouraged us for many years to store food for a day of want. Are we following the prophet? Quotes from President Thomas S. Monson and Ezra Taft Benson.

Click here to view and print a complete copy of the January 2015 Back to Basics Newsletter

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Index for Back to Basics Newsletters 2011 to 2014

It has been asked for and waited for and it is finally here! This index is meant as a reference to help find the various topics or recipes from the 4 year span of newsletters. The information in the 2011 – 2014 issues have been divided into nine sections and alphabetized under each section. The issue date is listed after the subject. The sections are:

Basic and Expanded Storage
Disaster Prep
Emergency preparedness
Hot tips
Opening Greeting
Provident Living Hints
Quotes and spiritual prep
Recipes and cooking

Click here to download the index for Back to Basics Newlsetters 2011 to 2014

Monday, December 1, 2014

December 2014

Another year is quickly drawing to a close. It seems fitting that we end each year with the celebration of the birth of our Savior. This truly is “The Most Wonderful Time of the Year”. We turn our thoughts to Christ as we hang the decorations, act out the Nativity, or join in a Sub-for-Santa project. The traditions we enjoy draw families closer and make for life long memories. It is a joyous season. As our thoughts turn to the Savior let us remember to do as He has asked – and “Be Prepared.” He has said “If ye are prepared ye shall not fear.” That preparedness comes in many forms. A temporal preparedness means that the storage room shelves are stocked, gas cans are full, disaster practices have been held, and we are staying out of debt and saving for a rainy day! Spiritual preparedness means the scriptures are well read, church meetings attended, we serve those less fortunate, and have a testimony growing.  May we honor the Savior at the commemoration of His birth by doing as He has asked us to.

And remember – Preparedness really is not a destination; it is a way of life!

Included in this month's newsletter:
A Preparedness Christmas: a list of things to give as preparedness gifts - home canned items, camping, outdoor cooking, solar, radio, candles (includes recipe), prepackaged items, fire starters.
Spiritual Preparedness: quotes from Robert D Hales (Building on the Rock of Heaven for the latter day winds and rains...) and Dallin H Oaks (Challenges of last days everywhere - but we know the outcome!)
Build a food storage for $5 to $15 a month: a list of 52 items to purchase weekly to build a storage slow and steady.
In the Southern Utah Garden: time to put the garden to rest - and relax yourself!
Cooking with Food Storage:Make some Christmas goodies from your food storage this year! Recipes for Pinto Cream Pie, Old Bottled Fruit Cake, Easy Cheesecake and Basic Pudding.
How to use Powdered Milk without having to Drink it! Recipes for using milk in your cooking:  whole milk, evaporated milk, whipped milk, buttermilk, and condensed milk.
Disaster Prep: General suggestions relative to a variety of emergencies such as air pollution, chemical spill, earthquake, fire, flood, nuclear attack, wind/tornado, or winter storm. The course of action to remember in any disaster.
A Prepared Soul...Nurturing the Mind: winter is the perfect time to read a good book!

Click here for a complete copy of the December 2014 Back to Basics Newsletter.