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.)

Friday, July 31, 2015

August 2015

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

The warm sultry days of August are upon us. The days are getting a little shorter – which gives some reprieve from the heat. The efforts of spring planting are now realized as we fill our tables with juicy tomatoes, crisp cucumbers or even another squash dish! If we are wise we are putting some in jars for the winter goodness of spaghetti sauce, pickles, or the fresh taste of green beans. Each family has their own favorites. What a blessing to be able to store up for a winter (or rainy) day. The cherries and apricots have come and gone, and peaches, apples and pears are making their debut. What will you do with the opportunity before you to harvest and prepare for the future?  We never know which harvest may be our last for a season. Let us use what the good Lord has provided and find a way to get a little more prepared and provide for our loved ones. There is no time like the present! Take advantage of it today!

Included in this month's newsletter:
Practicing Preparedness: Summertime Fun! The summer is not over yet. Use the time left to practice preparedness: Go camping, keep BBQ Fuel on hand, Use Kid Activities to make preparedness items, try new items on the BBQ, rotate water on plants, Road Trip restock, solar cooking, canning, clothes line useage, sleep under the stars.
Disaster Prep - what level are you? Criteria for a level 0 (every emergency is a disaster) to level 5 (can survive indefinitely)
In the Southern Utah Garden: Fall planting, weeds, apple spray, picking pears, scarab beetle, squash bugs, diseased tomato, corn harvest.
It's Freezing in August: Freezing produce tips, things to try and freezer useage tips.
Spiritual Preparedness: Quote from Henry B Eyring on preparing spiritually for the last days.

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

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

July 2015

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

July brings with it the hot days some of us dread and some of us enjoy. The monsoons will soon arrive and bring some temperature relief – as well as the sticky humidity. As with all of life – there is certainly “opposition in all things”. We soon learn to rise early to work in the cool of the day, and enjoy a dip in the pool or river to cool off in the heat of the day. Making the best of each day is the way we work at our preparedness also.  “This time, like all times, is a very good one, if we but know what to do with it.” (Ralph Waldo Emerson)  The evening news only affirms that the “signs of the times” are happening on a very regular basis. We cannot wait for the “heat” to pass before we get our spiritual and temporal preparedness in order.  Let each of us – “today while the sun shines” use the freedom this month of July stands for to “work with a will…and our duty fulfill” – as we get our preparedness in greater order.

Included in this months newsletter:
Cleanliness is Next to Godliness: Personal Hygiene Preparedness. Supplies to store and tips to keep us clean and healthy.
Disaster Preparedness: There is not time to run to the store in an emergency. Here are a few ideas to make a habit to keep you prepared for disasters.
Spiritual Preparedness: encouraging words:  quotes to encourage us in these last days.
In the Southern Utah Garden: weekly weeding, produce picked, fall garden list, new seeds, watering tips, squash bugs and poison.
Getting your food Storage NOW! a plan from 1976 to get your food storage in one year!
A Quote to answer questions and give peace: from Elder Vaughn J Featherstone: answers to sharing with others who have not followed the counsel to get a years supply, and about those who would plunder and break in and take our family storage.
Cooking with Food Storage:  Fresh Peach Cobbler recipe.

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

Monday, June 1, 2015

June 2015

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

Summer time is here at last along with all the things we love about the season – camping, BBQ’s, swimming, reunions, gardening and much more. And – school is out!  School may be out for the summer – but the learning does not have to cease. Summer is a great time to teach our families (and learn with them) about preparedness! So many things are learned as we go about our summer activities or go on summer trips.  Teach your family to garden – and as we plant a garden we learn the law of the harvest – reap what you sow – and keep the weeds out while they’re small. Teach your families to bottle and dry the produce from the garden and orchard. Learn about outdoor cooking on the summer camp out.  Learn to “endure” on the summer hike. Learn about the world around you and the amazing places where we live – and while you do talk about the “what if” disasters and how the family could respond. There are so many ways to keep summer a learning opportunity and help your family be a little more prepared! And of course – be sure to “stop and smell the roses” along the way!

      Included in this month's newsletter:
Home Canning: tips to help you can your own produce this summer.  
Disaster Prep - Sanitation: tips in case water and sewer lines are broken in a disaster - what you can do to keep your family clean and safe.
In the Southern Utah Garden: pick produce, mulch with newspaper, planting more veggies, thinning fruit, pruning shrubs.
Bottling Up Summer: recipes of how to use all those apricots!
Spiritual Preparedness: L Tom Perry and Dalloin H Oaks quotes.
Planning your year supply: link to a food calculator to help you plan amounts to store for your family.
Provident Living: Tips to save money (Ball Blue Book, Clear Jel, Shopping, Cook from scratch).
The Last Word: L. Tom Perry and H. David Burton on preparedness.

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

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.