May 272014
 

Ecozoom Rocket Stove - a sturdy little multi-fuel stove that's small enough to keep on hand for emergencies or take camping, durable enough be a primary cook stove.

We’ve talked about “Emergency Cooking – 10 Ways to Have a Hot Meal When the Power Goes Out“, and I firmly believe that everyone should have multiple ways to prepare a hot meal in case of emergency.  If you’re camping (at least around here), it’s getting tougher to have an old-fashioned campfire because you can’t transport wood around the state due to concerns about spreading emerald ash borer.  Enter the Ecozoom rocket stove – a compact camp stove designed to burn wood, biomass or charcoal that can cook a full meal with a very small amount of fuel.  I was contacted by Tom from EcoZoom last month and he asked me if I’d be willing to host a review and giveaway.  It seemed like a solid product, so I said “yes”.

The EcoZoom Versa rocket stove features an abrasion resistant and durable ceramic combustion chamber with a 10 cm in diameter vertical section that forces the gases to mix with the flame, decreasing harmful emissions.   The Versa adds a refractory metal liner to the inside of the combustion chamber that protects the ceramic insulation, increases the life of your stove, and improves combustion efficiency. This stove features new hinged combustion chamber doors enabling for an effortless conversion from wood to charcoal fuels. Both the main combustion chamber door and the damper door (bottom door) have reinforced metal frames and have hinges that serve to securely close the doors and regulate airflow. The Zoom Versa also has a durable, reformulated 3-pronged cast iron stove top that improves heat transfer for all pots including round bottom pots and woks.  The stove could be used for water bath canning, provided it is well fueled. Continue reading »

May 232014
 

What's causing the food price increases, and what steps you can take to stretch your food dollars in the months to come.

It’s hard to step foot into a grocery store and not notice the rising food prices.  Packages are getting smaller, too, as I’m sure you’ve noticed if you use any older recipes that include any sort of boxed or canned item as a component.  USA Today reported in “Rising Food Prices Pinch Consumers” that, “Retail food prices rose 0.4% in March, the same as in February and the largest amount since September 2011. By comparison, the prices of all consumer goods rose 0.2% in March and 0.1% the month before, reports the Bureau of Labor Statistics.”  Some items have risen over 50% in cost over the last four years.  In this post we’ll look at what’s causing the food price increases, and what steps you can take to stretch your food dollars in the months to come. Continue reading »

Mar 312014
 

Our Biggest Giveaway Ever - All American Sun Oven Kit, Excalibur 9-Tray Dehydrator, Goal Zero Yeti 150 Solar Generator Kit, Five $50 Gift Certificates from Discount Mylar Bags, Ten JarBoxes

My preparedness blogging friends and I have teamed up with some of our favorite companies and because of their generosity, we’re able to offer you our biggest giveaway to date with these amazing prizes:

  • All American Sun Oven Kit
  • Excalibur 9-Tray Dehydrator
  • Goal Zero Yeti 150 Solar Generator Kit
  • Five $50 Gift Certificates from Discount Mylar Bags
  • Ten JarBoxes. Continue reading »
Feb 152014
 

The Best Cheap Flashlight - Our recommendation for an inexpensive (under$10), durable, multipurpose flashlight that is great for everyday emergencies.

As part of our effort to be prepared for everyday emergencies like power outages and needing to find stuff in the back of the van at night when the rear light has burnt out, we went on a hunt for the best cheap flashlight.

There are a TON of flashlights available, and many of them are crazy expensive.  Many of them also require specialty batteries, which bumps up the cost even more.  (And if your special batteries go dead, the light is useless.)  It just didn’t seem practical to spend big bucks on flashlights that were likely to spend most of their time in nightstands, emergency bags and glove compartments.  My husband, August, made it his personal mission to check out an assortment of flashlights over the last several months, and this is his recommendation for the best small, durable, inexpensive, multipurpose flashlight. Continue reading »

Feb 082014
 

Preparedness Basics - Simple steps to be ready for stressful times. Make better decisions, have more options and possibly save yourself some money.

You have that nagging feeling you aren’t prepared – but you don’t know what to do, where to start, or maybe even what to prepare for. Take a deep breath and think what caused you to start thinking about getting prepared. Worrying can wear you out and freeze you into inaction. The best remedy is to take action.

Think through what the real risks are for you.  Start with the most likely event first, and prepare for that.  In this post we’ll discuss the preparedness basics that everyone should cover. Continue reading »