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.)

Saturday, January 3, 2015

January 2015

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.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

November 2014

 How fitting that with autumn comes the Season of Gratitude! The colored leaves, glowing sunsets and mild weather give us a great sense of satisfaction and reason for gratitude. As we gather for “Thanksgiving Dinner” this month may we be filled with gratitude for the preparedness items that we have worked on. Perhaps your dinner will come from the storage shelf? Canned corn, green beans, and cranberries, a frozen turkey, a bag of potatoes in your cool storage area, bottled cherries and apples for the pies, a bucket of flour for hot steaming rolls, and some bullion to assist in making gravy. Being prepared is just staying ahead of today’s needs and looking to the future. When this year’s dinner is over, be sure to restock those shelves for next year. We have been commanded to Be Prepared – and by so doing we show our gratitude to the Lord for all he has blessed us with and made available for us to use. It seems that the more we follow His word, the easier the way becomes. 

Included in this month's Newsletter:
Tools and Equipment: a list of items to keep on hand - tools and supplies - that will make your life easier now, and could save lives in case of an emergency. Chain saw, canning supplies, duct tape, and many more...)
Spiritual Prep: quotes from Wilford Woodruff on preparing as if the second coming were tomorrow but sill plant cherry trees, and from Gordon B. Hinckley on the events of the second coming being dreadful for the wicked, but a day for thanksgiving for those who in judgment are found acceptable.
Disaster Prep: planning ahead for evacuations, pre-packing emergency supplies, a grab-n-go folder and out of town contact.
In the Southern Utah Garden: cleaning old plants, cover crops for "green manure", drain hoses and sprinklers, getting rid of fall weeds, planting bulbs, leaves raked and mulched, fertilizing lawns, over-seeding sparse lawns, watering.
Provident Living: recipes to save some money: hot and cold chocolate milk mixes and homemade deodorant.
Fall Fruit: Pomegranates and Apples: removing pomegranates fruit, storing them and recipes to use them. Apple facts, ideas for how to use them and recipes to try.

Click here to download a complete copy of the November 2014 Back to Basics Newsletter.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

October 2014

Fall is upon us! The temperature has cooled and the smell of autumn is in the air. The trees in the mountains are on brilliant display, and the ones in the valley just thinking about changing their wardrobe for the season. For those who have been busy with the harvest, the fall gives a welcomed slower pace. No wonder this is a favorite time of year for many. As we lay our garden tools aside for another season, let us take up a pen and paper to mark off our inventories. We can continue to add to our preparedness as autumn progresses. A wood gathering trip is a fun outing for families as we add to our fuel supply. This is a great time for case lot sales: fill in the shelves with what you did not preserve from the garden or orchard. Most sales include emergency preparedness items: take stock of what you need and advantage of the lower prices. Include light plans: be sure you have candles, flashlights, or solar. We may be slowing down with the fall, but our preparedness is an on-going endeavor! May yours be as bright as the leaves around us! Happy Fall!

              Included in this month's newsletter:
6 Month Checkup: rotate and resupply water; 72 hour kit food,water and clothes; batteries in smoke detector; cars; conduct emergency drills.
Provident Living: save money by making your own: Oxi Clean like stain remover, multipurpose cleaner and a dust cloth.
Disaster Prep: Sheltering In: if you have to stay at home because of a pandemic, earthquake, chemical spill, quarantine or other - do you have what you need to be self sufficient?
Quick Tip: 1 in 10 people remain in control in an emergency - are you the one?
In the Southern Utah Garden: finish harvesting, storing green tomatoes, clean out old plants, till the garden under, kill weeds, leaves on the garden.
Spiritual Prep: what if the second coming were tomorrow? Quote from Dallin H Oaks for our preparedness.
Disaster Prep - A Bucket List: making a 72 hour kit in a bucket, other ideas for containers (backpack, suitcase, duffel bag, garbage can, storage tub).
The Doctor is in...Dr Mom that is: home remedies and items to store to combat the colds and flues of winter.

 Click here to view a complete copy of the October 2014 Back to Basics Newsletter.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

September 2014

A new school year is underway, and the temperatures seem to be dropping! September brings new friends and teachers, as well as a harvest in the garden and orchard. September is also “National Preparedness Month” - so it is a great time to take stock of where you stand with preparedness! How did your summer canning go? What do you need to fill your shelves? There are always case-lot sales at the local grocery stores in September that will help fill in what you still need.  Local sales usually include great buys on other preparedness items like buckets or water barrels and containers. Let us spend some time evaluating where we are, and then go and “Do IT”! Take advantage of this preparedness month and give your family peace of mind. Then when the “Storms” appear, we will be ready! Remember – there is no time like the present!

Click here to download a complete copy of September 2014 Back to Basics Newsletter.

Included in this month's newsletter:
Food Storage: Easy and 1, 2, 3: start with a 3 month supply - add a long term basic storage, and fill it in with the expanded items that will add nutrients and prevent food fatigue.
Do's and Don't of food storage: Twelve ideas to help you know what to DO and what to NOT DO as you add to your food storage.
Spiritual Preparedness: Dallin H. Oaks quote on making both temporal and spiritual preparation for the events at the second coming.
Thought for the day: President Thomas S. Monson on a supply of food and being debt-free.
Disaster Prep: Prepare BEFORE the earthquake: twelve ideas to do before a disaster to make it easier when something happens.
In The Southern Utah Garden: finish the harvest - keep the weeds down - fall planting of veggies and trees - and making a mini greenhouse.
Provident Living - The Law of the Parachute: how you use a parachute works for provident living.
Cooking with Food Storage: substitutions from your food storage to make condensed, evaporated and buttermilk, brown sugar, baking chocolate, baking powder, allspice and pumpkin pie spice.

Click here to download a complete copy of September 2014 Back to Basics Newsletter.

Friday, August 1, 2014

August 2014

It seems like the world around us is becoming more wicked and confused almost daily. The evening news is full of “signs of the times”. We can wring our hands with fret and worry, or we can be proactive and make sure our families are prepared! We have been admonished “If ye are prepared, ye shall not fear.” There is a story of a man who was hired by a farmer as a farm hand and he told his employer that his best qualification was that he could “sleep when the wind blows”. One night the farmer found out what was meant by that. A big winter storm arrived and the farmer ran to rouse his sleeping farm hand. He hollered for him - then ran out into the howling wind and rain – worried about the farm. But once outside he found the barn doors shut, the animals put away, and things were tarped and tied down. The farm was ready for the storm. The farm hand could sleep when the wind blows because he was prepared. Can each of us also rest easy as the storms of life arrive? It is not a matter of “If” the wind will blow, but “when”. Will you be able to sleep when the wind blows? Make sure you can – and do it TODAY!

Included in this newsletter:

Grow Your Own - Words from modern day prophets on why we need to plant a garden and some fruit trees. When we need it we will not have time to plant it!
Provident Living -  Waste Not Want Not: tips to save the way our grandmothers did.
In the Southern Utah Garden: August planting list, spray apples, weeds, diseased plants, squash bugs, scarab beetle, preserve produce.
Spiritual Preparedness - Thomas S Monson on faith helping us in the storms of life.
Power Outage: Saving freezer food storage: Ground Beef Jerky, taking care of fruits and vegetables, meats, casseroles and other.
Disaster Prep: Sheltering In: 8 steps to take if you have to stay in your home in a disaster of chemical or hazardous air quality.

Click here to download a complete copy of the August 2014 Back to Basics Newsletter.