The Survival Mom » Moms http://thesurvivalmom.com Helping moms worry less & enjoy life! Thu, 29 Jan 2015 08:00:40 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.1 Be a Lean, Mean Survival Mom Machine http://thesurvivalmom.com/be-a-lean-mean-survival-machine/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/be-a-lean-mean-survival-machine/#comments Wed, 28 Jan 2015 08:00:44 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=1857 Picture this.  You’re with your kids or grand-kids in a COSTCO or Wal-Mart, when you hear gunshots and screams coming from across the store.  From the terrifying sounds you know you only have a few seconds to get to safety, Read More

The post Be a Lean, Mean Survival Mom Machine by The Survival Mom appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>

Do you need a list of reasons to become fit and in better shape? How about survival fitness? | via www.TheSurvivalMom.comPicture this.  You’re with your kids or grand-kids in a COSTCO or Wal-Mart, when you hear gunshots and screams coming from across the store.  From the terrifying sounds you know you only have a few seconds to get to safety, and an EXIT door is about thirty yards away.

Do you have the physical conditioning, stamina, otherwise known as survival fitness, to grab the kids, pick them up if necessary, and run fast enough to escape with your lives?  Or, would those extra pounds and flabby muscles slow you down to make a quick escape impossible? Are you a lean, mean Survival Mom machine?

I’m the first to admit that a quick sprint across the store would be pretty difficult for me.  I could do it, but it sure wouldn’t be impressive in terms of speed or style.  I’ve missed way too many work-outs at the gym and have enjoyed far too many meals at the drive-through lately.  I’m typical of millions of Americans, yet as someone who has preparedness as a top goal, I know that someday my survival may depend on being physically fit.

The necessity of getting shape and building up my physical strength has been a big pill for me to swallow.  I can’t tell you how much I hate exercising and every minute on the treadmill is torment.  Even so, I’ve been working on improving my physical fitness.  I’m not a runner, far from it, but I’ve been making a point of walking or bicyling as many days of the week as I can and doing a series of strength-building calisthenics (floor exercises).

Simple lean, mean Survival Mom machine tips!

When I feel like turning on the TV or plopping down with the latest Daniel Silva book, here’s what I tell myself.

  • Upper body strength will help improve my target shooting.
  • I’m setting a good example for the kids.  They love physical activity, and I want them to keep that attitude.
  • Stronger leg muscles are more attractive and much better for running from a dangerous situation.  And also for kicking bad guys in the groin.
  • As I build up my cardio-vascular system, my overall health improves, hopefully keeping me healthy for many, many years to come.  Who knows what our health care system will look like in a few years, and I’d just as soon stay healthy and limit my dependence on the medical system.
  • I am so vain it’s embarrassing.  Heck, I just want to look cuter in my jeans!

How about you?  Could you depend on your fitness level to run fast and far if your life, and the lives of your children, depended on it?  Building up our bodies to be as strong as possible and losing some of the pounds that slow us down is a survival and preparedness must.  No, it’s not an easy step, and there are hundreds of excuses to procrastinate, most of them printed on restaurant menus!  However, there’s a very powerful reason for Survival Moms to start today:  our children.

[bctt tweet=”Someday your survival may depend on being physically fit.”]

If you’re already in shape, let us know how you do it.  If you’re on the journey toward physical fitness and being a lean, mean survival machine, hey, we’re on it together!  I’d love to hear about  your plans for becoming the leanest and strongest Survival Mom you possibly can be!

Join the Facebook group, Skinny Survival Moms here!

Listen to this Related Podcast

The Survival Mom interviews David Zulberg, author of The 5 Skinny Habits.

This post was updated from the original posting on November 6, 2009.

The post Be a Lean, Mean Survival Mom Machine by The Survival Mom appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>
http://thesurvivalmom.com/be-a-lean-mean-survival-machine/feed/ 12
18 Ways to Complicate Your Life http://thesurvivalmom.com/18-ways-to-complicate-your-life/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/18-ways-to-complicate-your-life/#comments Fri, 02 Jan 2015 09:07:00 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=6869 In honor of Patrice Lewis’s book, The Simplicity Primer,  I offer an alternative: my “primer” to over-complicating your life.  I have tried all these strategies and can vouch for their success. 1.    Insist on a, “nice big spread” of food Read More

The post 18 Ways to Complicate Your Life by The Survival Mom appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>

18 Ways to Complicate Your Life, Funny, via The Survival Mom

In honor of Patrice Lewis’s book, The Simplicity Primer,  I offer an alternative: my “primer” to over-complicating your life.  I have tried all these strategies and can vouch for their success.

1.    Insist on a, “nice big spread” of food for every get-together.  Be sure to drag out every recipe you’ve ever wanted to try, especially those with ingredients only available at a gourmet store some 23 miles away.

2.    Wait until the night before a trip to pack.  This is even more effective if you also wait to do ten loads of laundry in order for everyone to have clean underwear for the trip.  In a pinch, make a quick trip to a 24-hour Walmart to buy new underwear.

3.    Always say, “Yes!”  After all, you would never want to disappoint someone in need of an emergency baby-sitter, a homemade dessert, or a substitute Sunday School teacher.

4.    Set impossibly high goals, and when they aren’t achieved, just set the same goals all over again!  Lose 15 pounds in two weeks?  Sure!  Why not!

5.    When dishes come out of the dishwasher not-so-clean, put them right back in instead of washing them by hand.  Food baked on during the drying cycle will become doubly baked-on the second time around, which is exactly why you pop them right back in for a third run.  Third time’s the charm!

6.    Always have at least half a dozen projects in motion.  A knitting project, photo organizing, receipt filing, and multiple partially read books just add to the excitement.  The more, the merrier!

7.    Yell.  It’s common knowledge that kids obey instantly when mom yells at them from the other end of the house.

8.    Play before work.  Be sure to pass this philosophy on to your kids.

9.   Ignore “Last Notice” bills from the water company.  When the City finally comes to turn off the water, the family gets a fun, impromptu mini-vacation at the nearest hotel.  If you can find everyone’s swimsuits, you can enjoy the pool!

10.   Decide at the last minute, say 6 p.m. or so, what to make for dinner. This almost always necessitates a hurried trip to the grocery store to pick up a few ingredients not in your pantry.  Trust me.  It’s a great way to make sure the family is good and hungry when dinner is finally served!

11.   Ignore little symptoms.  Wait until they get really, really serious before making that appointment with the doctor or dentist.

12.   Spend some $350 on a set of 11 different skin care products that are guaranteed to produce youthful results but must be used in a certain order, on certain days of the week.  Add the two serums for overall body use, along with a battery powered scrub brush, you’ll experience the full meaning of, “high maintenance woman.”

13.   Check out the maximum number of books the library allows.  Sit back and enjoy watching the kids take the books on car rides, to doctor appointments, and to Grandma’s for overnight visits.  Tracking down each book is a great way for the family to bond at 5 p.m the day they’re all due!

14.   Own one pair of scissors.

15.   Rigidly adhere to expectations and schedules.  Refuse to accept any deviation, and when something goes wrong, pitch a fit.

16.  Magazines!  Subscribe to several, and have more than one location for them as they stack up.  Remember, the “secret to life”, just might be in one of these issues, and you’d hate to miss it.  Have your (only) pair of scissors handy when you do get time to leaf through them, and clip several articles and coupons from each one.  This will result in the need for a complicated filing system.  It’s a win-win all the way around.

17.  Develop a make-up routine so you’ll always look your best.  It should include a foundation for your foundation, the actual foundation, a foundation for your eye-shadow, and the eye-shadow itself.  A single eye-shadow color isn’t enough.  Your routine should have a color for the inner lid, a different color for the outer lid, a lighter shade for under the brow, and a deeper shade for the crease.  Your eyes will need a liner, a mascara ‘base’, and then the mascara, but be sure to use an eyelash curler first.  Don’t forget the lip foundation, the lipstick, and then the gloss.  Before rushing out the door, pat a bit of powder on the shiny, and now-sweaty, parts of your face for a beautiful matte finish.

18.   Store toilet paper at the other end of the house, and then yell when you’re stuck in the bathroom and need a new roll.  (See #7.)

 

P.S.  It was scary how easy it was to write this list!

The post 18 Ways to Complicate Your Life by The Survival Mom appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>
http://thesurvivalmom.com/18-ways-to-complicate-your-life/feed/ 28
My Opinion: Why I Feel Survival Moms Should Carry http://thesurvivalmom.com/opinion-feel-survival-moms-carry/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/opinion-feel-survival-moms-carry/#comments Sun, 28 Dec 2014 17:17:03 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=19559 I feel very strongly that women should not only carry a firearm, but be very knowledgeable on the gun they carry, know gun safety and know how to very accurately use their gun. Women and children are vulnerable and I Read More

The post My Opinion: Why I Feel Survival Moms Should Carry by Tammy Trayer appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>

Why Every Woman Should Carry

I feel very strongly that women should not only carry a firearm, but be very knowledgeable on the gun they carry, know gun safety and know how to very accurately use their gun.

Women and children are vulnerable and I feel today, more than ever that women should be knowledgeable on the varying ways they can protect themselves and their families from two and even four legged predators.   Not to mention, it is our RIGHT!

Ladies, if you are unfamiliar with a firearm, you can get assistance with AGirlAndAGun website.  I highly recommend them and know that you will be well taken care of.  I had the privilege to interview Julianna Crowder who established A Girl and A Gun.  They are spread out all over the United States and I am sure there will be a chapter near you.

As a woman that regularly carries a firearm, I’d like to also recommend the FlashBang holsters because they are designed for women by women and therefore they are light in weight and are available in varying styles to accommodate your attire and carrying preferences.  I also had the privilege to interview Lisa Looper owner of FlashBang Holsters.   I had a hard time finding a comfortable holster and one that did not leave my hips sore after a long trek until I found the FlashBang holsters.

Another for-women-only holster that has been reviewed on this blog is the Can Can Concealment Holster.

Once I became a mother, my whole world changed.  It was no longer just about me, it was about how I could protect my children no matter what the circumstance.   The only thing more important than my family is God and their livelihood is always my first concern.  Being sure that I am capable of protecting them became of utmost importance to me.

Ladies, I’d like to leave you with one last thought regarding firearms.  We were out adventuring one day and we left in a rush.  I forgot my pistol and my husband said to me “GREAT, so who is going to have my back?“.  That is all I needed to hear and I have never gone anywhere else without it.  It is just as much a part of my attire as are my shoes.

Original image care of:  MontanaHomesteader.com

 

The post My Opinion: Why I Feel Survival Moms Should Carry by Tammy Trayer appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>
http://thesurvivalmom.com/opinion-feel-survival-moms-carry/feed/ 16
Wilderness Survival Series: Practicing Survival Skills As A Family http://thesurvivalmom.com/wilderness-survival-series-practicing-survival-skills-family-everydaycarry/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/wilderness-survival-series-practicing-survival-skills-family-everydaycarry/#comments Mon, 15 Dec 2014 08:00:28 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=19555 We are surrounded by wilderness here on our Idaho homestead.  We spend as much of our free time as possible outside and adventuring. What do our adventures consist of? We live a very traditional life out here so a lot of our Read More

The post Wilderness Survival Series: Practicing Survival Skills As A Family by Tammy Trayer appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>

Wilderness Survival Skills are important for everyone, not just survivalists and mountain men! | via www.TheSurvivalMom.comWe are surrounded by wilderness here on our Idaho homestead.  We spend as much of our free time as possible outside and adventuring.

What do our adventures consist of?

We live a very traditional life out here so a lot of our time in the wild actually has a purpose. We may be scouting for a good hunting spot, harvesting our meat or firewood for the year, taking a 20 mile hike for some casual exercise, or even panning for some gold (really!). We really put our wilderness survival skills to the test!

Any time we leave our property, whether on foot or in a vehicle, you can be sure that we have our gear and are prepared for anything. Not only do we have our gear, but we always have additional clothing and we each have a firearm.

We live in a very vast location and you never know what may be around the next corner, when your truck may break down miles and miles from home, when the weather may turn, or when even an unexpected injury will happen.

Our predators are typically the 4 legged kind, but you never know when you may run into the 2 legged kind as well. Our safety is a top priority and I feel that survival moms should know how to protect themselves and their children. I feel very strongly that women should not only carry a firearm, but be very knowledgeable on the gun they carry, know gun safety and know how to very accurately use their gun. This is a subject you will find in one of my upcoming posts, but I thought I would give you a little food for thought for those of you that do not carry.

Before I met my husband (aka Mountain Man), I was already busy running wild in the mountains and enjoying the outdoors. I grew up on a farm and my Dad wanted boys and ended up with two girls! As a result, my sister and I were the epitome of tomboys. I knew the outdoors and I LOVED it! I am thankful for the chivalrous nature of my Mountain Man, BUT when it comes to being in the outdoors, he knows I can hold my own and he expects me to know how to handle and take care of myself.

After having children, it only seemed natural to teach my children what I knew. Many are not used to the outdoors the way my Mountain Man and I are, which is why I want to take you through the steps for getting and keeping your family educated, trained and ready. Embracing things as a family is a great opportunity to grow as a family and also empower and nurture your children. When they see Mom and Dad do it, the kids are more likely to jump in and be enthusiastic.

Why YOU Need Outdoor Skills, too

Ladies, if you have a very chivalrous man and maybe even a proud man that wants to show you he is fully capable of taking care of yourself and your family, that is a very genuine man. However, he is not doing you any favors if he does it all for you. If you, yourself, are not interested in learning and allow your husband to do everything while you are camping or in the outdoors, you are not doing yourself any favors either.  Let me explain…

Let’s say that your husband falls and breaks his ankle during your next excursion.  What will you do?

Let’s say you are all out camping, and one of your children wonders off and gets lost.  You split up in an effort to find your child. It is getting dark and you have been unsuccessful in finding them.  Does your child know enough to survive, lost, for a night without you?

This is critical!!!  This is why, even though our family is very well versed in survival, we still go out as a family and practice our skills every chance we get. The old adage “Practice Makes Perfect” is just as important as “Knowledge Is Power”!

The entire family should know what gear to carry, what to carry on their person, how to light a fire, how to build a shelter, how to get safe drinking water and how to sustain themselves in any situation. You never know what may happen when you are out on even a simple hike.

Every day, I wear a paracord survival bracelet that my son made me. I have 9′ of paracord at my disposal ALL the time. I carry a lighter in my pocket, a pocket knife on my jeans, and my Keltek .380 P-3AT is holstered on my belt. My son is equipped with the same things and then some. Having those simple things on our person can save our lives. (This is referred to as your EDC, or Every Day Carry.)

This spring. our family practiced the whole 9 yards, including staying out for the night. Here is a little video of our excursion. As part of this new series here on The Survival Mom blog, I will walk you through what we carry in our packs, the varying ways we start fires, build shelters, hunt for food, etc.

This is just one part of a series of posts where I will provide how-to information and videos that you can watch with your children or as a family. I look forward to sharing my knowledge with you and hope to encourage you to embrace these tasks as a family.

 

The post Wilderness Survival Series: Practicing Survival Skills As A Family by Tammy Trayer appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>
http://thesurvivalmom.com/wilderness-survival-series-practicing-survival-skills-family-everydaycarry/feed/ 5
Fast, Free Survival Mom Maintenance http://thesurvivalmom.com/fast-free-survival-mom-maintenance/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/fast-free-survival-mom-maintenance/#comments Sun, 28 Sep 2014 06:00:47 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=18145  Pin this —> Taking care of the mom who takes care of everyone else! The most important thing you can do for your children? Take care of their mother! You’ve heard that if the momma isn’t happy, nobody’s happy.  You Read More

The post Fast, Free Survival Mom Maintenance by Kris appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>

mom maintenance

 Pin this —> Taking care of the mom who takes care of everyone else!

The most important thing you can do for your children? Take care of their mother!

You’ve heard that if the momma isn’t happy, nobody’s happy.  You need to take care of yourself physically, mentally, and spiritually to be at the top of your game so you can be the mom your kids deserve every day—including in times of crisis.

But with both time and money in short supply, what’s a survival mom to do? It’s surprising what fast, free actions can help you be better prepared.

Take care of your body

Eat in the morning

If you’re still having aspirin and coffee for breakfast, you need to rethink your routine! You’d never send your kids to face a full day on an empty stomach. You shouldn’t, either. Even if you mix up a quick protein shake the night before and down it in the car, you’re less likely to experience low blood sugar and that irritable, panicky, I’m-late-again tantrum. (‘Cause that’s not just me, right?) You’ve prepared for having to make it home without your car, deal with ugly weather conditions, and countless other unpredictable emergencies. Will you really be able to do it on an empty stomach?

Drink water

Years ago I read a book called You’re Not Sick, You’re Thirsty.  It makes for pretty dry reading, no pun intended, but you can glean much from just the summary.  While recent research indicates that forcing gallons of water down your gullet isn’t necessarily beneficial, Mother Nature never intended you to drink a 2-liter of soda a day, either.

Staying hydrated boosts your energy and helps fill your tummy, too. If you’re one of the handful of women who doesn’t have to diligently watch her waistline, well, I’ll keep my snarky comments to myself. But for the rest of us, water may be our diet’s best friend.

Stretch 

You know you’re supposed to exercise at least 3 times a week; it’s not news.  But I promised free and QUICK strategies, so try this one! Find 30 seconds in your day—especially when you feel a bit sluggish—to stretch your back, arms, and legs. Touch your toes. Take a deep breath. You’ll feel energized instantly.

Floss 

Statistically, most of us don’t floss our teeth regularly. Your oral health provides a window to your overall health, according to the Mayo Clinic.  You probably have imagined a scenario where dental care could be unavailable or unaffordable.  A 2-minute date each day with some dollar-store floss seems like a pretty cheap insurance policy.

Stop smoking, already!

This is beyond free, because you’re actually saving money. And your health, and your kids’ health. If it hits the fan, you’ll have to go cold turkey, anyway, so you might as well get ahead of the game and put that money to better use now.

I know, I know, it’s easy for me to say because I’ve never been addicted. So I’ll tell you what I tell my kids: If it’s important to you, you’ll find a way.  If not, you’ll find an excuse. Breathing is kind of essential to survival—more than any food stores or silver stash. Give your lungs the priority they deserve.

Get some sleep!

Seriously—your mind and body need rest.  Limit your late nights to just a couple a week.  The laundry will still be there in the morning, I promise. But if you drive to school groggy, snap at your kids unnecessarily, or slog through your day doing everything at half speed, you’d be better off getting that extra hour of zzz’s.

Keep your mind sharp

Read!

Download a free kindle app. Then, download some free kindle books. Even without a kindle, you can find enough to keep your brain engaged. Read short articles while you’re at the doctor’s office. Read The Survival Mom on your lunch break. Read to your kids before bed! Keep that tradition going even when your kids can read on their own. Current research indicates that it’s even good for teenagers! Read a book together (or at least talk about it when you’re both done).

Journal

Neurosurgeon Dr. Paul Nussbaum has laid out a prescription for keeping the brain so healthy that the symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease can be delayed until death—even when physiological changes consistent with the disease are already present. His recommendations include reading and writing just a little bit every day. Don’t bog yourself down wallowing in only survivalist reading. A cheesy romance novel can be good for the brain and spirit, too.  Still no time? Read on your treadmill. Surely multitasking can help you justify 30 minutes to yourself. (I like to read the kindle and walk the track while the kids play at the playground.)

Nurture your spirit

Develop an attitude of gratitude

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by your lists of things to do/buy/learn before everything hits the fan, make a mental list of all the things you have to celebrate. It’s impossible to wallow in the doom and gloom of internet news when you ‘re picturing the faces of your smiling kiddos or grandkids! Even in the midst of divorce, illness, financial difficulty, or multiple loads of unfolded laundry, you have lots to be thankful for. If you’re not dealing with any of those issues, you know where to start your list.

Pray or meditate daily

Even if you’re not religious per se, Dr. Nussbaum says daily time in quiet contemplation (maybe making that gratitude list?) has powerful effects on the brain and body. I know it’s tough to find quiet time.  Might I suggest the minutes between “snooze” hits on your morning alarm? Works for me.  I find I can be very contemplative on Monday mornings.

Ask for help

It’s not against the rules.  It doesn’t make you a bad mom. It just means you’re human, and you’ve accepted it. That can be really powerful! Showing your kids how to take care of simple chores, meal prep, and organization can be empowering for them and liberating for you. And if we’re being honest, go ahead and admit that you don’t ask your husband for help because you hate admitting you need it, not because he won’t do it. Mine started snapping beans with the ballgame on and worked his way up to slap-chopping vegetables with the kids (it’s hilarious to see them all lined up and pounding their way toward homemade salsa!). Now he’s an expert tomato skinner, pear peeler, and taste-tester. Plus we get to spend time together instead of me busy in the kitchen while he does…well, whatever he does out in the workshop.  I have found he’ll help with pretty much anything if I ask. But expecting him to notice a sticky hand print and attack it without prompting is unrealistic. I don’t get too worked up about it—especially now that I feel like I’m not doing it all on my own. (Again, that’s not just me, right?) Asking for help will also allow you to make time to exercise, read, and get enough sleep.  I bet your husband will agree that you deserve those things! Give yourself permission.

You’re too important to your family to neglect yourself. They need your “A” game every day. And because you never know when emergencies—major or minor—could require peak physical, mental, and emotional performance, taking care of the mom who takes care of everyone else may be the most important preparation you’ll ever make.

The post Fast, Free Survival Mom Maintenance by Kris appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>
http://thesurvivalmom.com/fast-free-survival-mom-maintenance/feed/ 2
A Breast Lump Led Me to Homemade Deodorant http://thesurvivalmom.com/breast-lump-led-homemade-deodorant/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/breast-lump-led-homemade-deodorant/#comments Sun, 21 Sep 2014 06:00:02 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=17874 Timing is everything, and I found this particular lump in my armpit the same month a friend died of breast cancer. So, I visited my doctor. One of the questions my doctor had asked was if I changed to a Read More

The post A Breast Lump Led Me to Homemade Deodorant by Liz Long appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>

homemade deodorantTiming is everything, and I found this particular lump in my armpit the same month a friend died of breast cancer. So, I visited my doctor.

One of the questions my doctor had asked was if I changed to a new deodorant, and I had recently started using the Famous Brand SUPER STRONG deodorant. It worked really well, but…. Not worth the risk if it was giving me who-knows-what in my armpits.

Naturally, I had a mammogram and an ultrasound to check. The result: benign / nothing. Now, I don’t know about you, but those are two different results. Nothing means nothing, as in, not a thing. Benign means nothing to worry about, as in, something is there, but don’t worry. But I digress. (In case you are wondering, I ultimately had it removed and it was breast tissue in the “wrong place”, truly nothing to worry about.)

I changed to Amazon-bought natural deodorants. We finally found one with colloidial silver in it that works well, but I still wasn’t 100% sold. This is something I will use daily, potentially for decades. I don’t want to turn blue!

My Lucky Discovery

I don’t know about you, but I’m a sucker for “spa products” on sale, especially a nice sugar or salt scrub. I often even use them before they dry out completely. At some point in the summer when my pits were particularly stinky, I decided to try a sugar scrub on them. Miraculous! So much less stinky!

When I ran out of my purchased sugar and salt scrubs, I decided to try making them with my son, who loves mucking about mixing things together. While we were at it, I figured we might as well try homemade deodorant. I used the emptied containers from my store-bought spa products, and also an empty vaseline container for some leftovers.

Both were as easy as can be to make! I needed coconut oil (solid at room temp), which I found at a local grocery store. The deodorant also calls for Arrowroot Powder, which we had on hand courtesy of a recent attempt to eat healthier.

After I started using these, I stopped having problems with stinky pits, even on super-hot days when sweat was pouring off me. Woo hoo! It’s really a blessing for the whole family.

There were a few days when I wasn’t as hot that I did notice a bit of stinkyness at the end of the day. I realized that on those days, I hadn’t used the sugar scrub at the end of my shower.

So, from my experiences, I recommend using a sugar or salt scrub on your pits in the shower, then using homemade deodorant. Both are so simple to make that  I do it with my 8 yr old for fun. He gets to choose the essential oils and put them in, with supervision. We have fun together.

I was able to buy all the ingredients from my local health-conscious grocery store, no special orders required.

Deodorant:

This recipe originally came from the website Passionate Homemaking.

Mix dry ingredients. Add coconut oil gradually until it is smooth and well blended. The texture should be similar to commercial deodorant, soft enough to go on easily but firm enough to hold its shape.

You can put it into an empty deodorant container (an old one will do) or any other sealable container.

I recommend making sure the container has a good seal because this does have a low melting point. Left in a tent at Scout camp, it liquified when the temp was “only” in the low 90s. If it hadn’t had a good seal, that would have been quite the mess to clean up.

Vanilla / Brown Sugar Scrub:

  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 1 cup of granulated sugar
  • 1 cup sunflower oil
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract

Mix the sugars together until there are no lumps. Add sunflower oil and vanilla. (Sunflower oil does not carry the strong scent that Olive Oil does.) Store in a sealed glass container until ready to use.

Salt scrubs will work as well, they just might sting if you nick yourself while shaving.

The post A Breast Lump Led Me to Homemade Deodorant by Liz Long appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>
http://thesurvivalmom.com/breast-lump-led-homemade-deodorant/feed/ 4
REVIEW: ESSIO Aromatherapy Shower http://thesurvivalmom.com/review-essio-aromatherapy-shower/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/review-essio-aromatherapy-shower/#comments Sun, 07 Sep 2014 16:00:00 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=17932 I have become a big fan of essential oils over the last few years, so I was curious when I had the chance to review the ESSIO Aromatherapy Shower kit. The kit includes a plastic arm that clips onto to Read More

The post REVIEW: ESSIO Aromatherapy Shower by Liz Long appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>

aromatherapy showerI have become a big fan of essential oils over the last few years, so I was curious when I had the chance to review the ESSIO Aromatherapy Shower kit. The kit includes a plastic arm that clips onto to the showerhead pipe, three types of oils, and a plastic tray to hold the oils.

To start, if I didn’t make every possible mistake with the first pod, I’m not sure which one I missed. This is good for you, since I can tell you what to watch out for.

After I got all my mistakes out of the way, it was easy to use.

The First Pod: Breathe

They clearly state that these aren’t designed for use with a hand-held shower. The master bath shower was in the middle of being recaulked, so I tried it in the kids shower. Naturally, it has a hand-held shower. (If I wasn’t writing a review, I would have waited, but I thought it might be helpful for readers to know how it worked out – I’m thoughtful that way.)

The short answer: It wasn’t terrible, but the oil pod wasn’t directly in the water as is intended. It might actually have made it, if I had realized that the plastic arm the pod attaches to telescopes out to become longer. My user errors didn’t stop it from filling the room with a lovely scent, but it just didn’t seem quite as effective.

When I pulled out the pod, there was a plastic cover on it. The instructions didn’t mention removing anything before attaching it to the plastic arm, so I thought it was paper that would be punched through. It does not punch through, it twists off – and you’ll need to put it back on when you’re done, so don’t throw it away.

Even after I removed the plastic cover, I had a difficult time getting the pod attached and dropped it a couple times, once into running water. The instructions warn you it will dilute the oil if you get water into it by putting the entire pod under the water flow.

When I finally attached it, I wasn’t careful and managed to ram the tip that is supposed to go into the water flow back inside the pod. Between dropping it, ramming the tip inside, and other user-errors, I used up all the “Relax” oil in the first usage.

I did find that it made me more relaxed, even with the problems getting started, and both my boys enjoyed the scent when they took showers a little later in the evening.

The Second Pod: Passion

I used it in the master bath and it went far more smoothly. The plastic arm easily attached to the pipe in both bathrooms, and I was able to attach the pod easily now that I knew what not to do.

The pod easily reached the water flow. Flipping it up to reduce usage and back down to add more aroma was a piece of cake. The “lid” went back on the pod for storage without any challenges.

I used very little of the oil this time and have more than enough for several more showers, and I really enjoyed the smell.

The Third Pod: Breathe

I can’t testify as to whether this helps on a stuffy head since I don’t have one right now, but it smells nice and like something that would help, if I was stuffy.

I had a little more trouble attaching this one than the second, but nowhere near the difficulty I had the first time, and I still had it attached in well under thirty seconds. As with any product that requires a tight fit (you don’t want the pod dropping off mid-shower), sometimes the fit is simply a little tighter than others.

While my kids aren’t tall enough to tilt the pods up and down, the youngest loves the idea and the eldest is willing to give it a try. The next time they have a cold, we’ll use this. I may even buy the “Night” pods for nights he’s not very sleepy at bedtime.

Overall

aromatherapy nightI could understand readers thinking that putting oils in your shower could make the shower slippery or leave your hair or body oily or greasy. The truth is, as with all things essential oil, we’re talking about drops of oil, not cups of it. In addition, it’s not dripping on you. The drops of oil are delivered through a specialized tip that diffuses them in the shower water.

Even when I dropped the pod directly on the tub floor, it wasn’t oily. And even with using an entire pod in one shower, I didn’t feel any residue on my skin or hair. The whole family could, however, smell the oil throughout the upstairs for quite awhile after my shower.

As I said, I’m a big fan of essential oils. These are a fun, easy way to get aromatherapy benefits – and an excuse to take a little extra time both in the shower and in the bathroom afterwards, pampering yourself a bit and enjoying the lingering aroma.

The Actual Pods

Since you are probably wondering, while a refillable pod that you can put your own scents into would be great, they don’t offer those. They do have a nice selection that covers what are probably the most-often-wanted uses for for aromatherapy including the three discussed, Night, Wisdom, and Clear.

We’ve all seen McCormick’s little oval squeeze containers of dye for coloring food. Each oil pod is approximately the same size (and shape) as those dye containers, but they aren’t squeezable. They also aren’t refillable, but you can buy replacement packs of 4 or 8 pods for $19.99 or $29.99. Given that they are 100% certified organic oils with no chemicals or synthetics added, that price seems reasonable.

If each pod lasts for 4 showers, that works out to about $1.25 or $0.94 (plus shipping ad handling) per shower for a home-spa experience. (They are actually offered at my favorite day spa!) I’ll take that deal.

Giveaway

ESSIO is running a giveaway from now through September 25th. Five lucky winners will receive a free Shower Kit.

The post REVIEW: ESSIO Aromatherapy Shower by Liz Long appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>
http://thesurvivalmom.com/review-essio-aromatherapy-shower/feed/ 0
Subway Safety with Kids http://thesurvivalmom.com/subway-safety-kids/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/subway-safety-kids/#comments Wed, 13 Aug 2014 06:48:59 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=16763 Living in a big city, I have learned to rely on public transportation. Parking spots are limited and often too narrow to fit my big jeep in. Not to mention the crazy, fast paced, and often mentally exhausting traffic here Read More

The post Subway Safety with Kids by Jessica Hentze appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>

Subway_Safety_WKidsLiving in a big city, I have learned to rely on public transportation. Parking spots are limited and often too narrow to fit my big jeep in. Not to mention the crazy, fast paced, and often mentally exhausting traffic here in Seoul, South Korea.

It is easier and more cost effective to just walk a few blocks to the subway station. Besides, my kids love to ride the subway.

After the first few trips on the subway with my children, and playing out the “What If?” scenarios in my mind, I compiled a few tips to aid in safely traveling with kids on the subway.

Preparing for the Trip

Since both my children are younger, they each wear a lanyard with an I.D. holder on it. I place a card with my name and phone number on it, as well as an alternate emergency point of contact.

When we travel, I also include our hotel name and phone number. If something happens, they don’t have to struggle to remember phone numbers. It also gives them a place to put their subway card.

Entering the Subway Station

Subway stations can be very busy places at times, crowded, and face paced. There are many moving components: automatic doors, escalators, elevators, turnstiles, and moving sidewalks.

Take your time. Don’t get caught up in the rush. Remind the kids to take their time on steps, through the turnstiles, and to be clear of the subway door. In the subway car, I always try to have the kids find a seat. If there are none, be sure they always hang onto a safety rail. Sometimes the trains can have rough starts and stops. It is easy to lose your balance.

Learn the emergency signs together. There are many different signs in the station. Regular signs point you to the bathroom, the platform, transfers to other trains, information kiosks, and standard exits. Then there are the emergency ones: exits, phones, first aid, flash lights, fire extinguishers, and gas masks. I make a game out of it by randomly quizzing them on finding a certain sign, for instance an emergency exit.

I also point out the Information kiosks and station attendants who have special uniforms. In an emergency, the kids know they can ask the attendants for help.

Knowing the Route

Another game we play is knowing our starting and ending points: what station we begin our adventure on and our destination. We also count the stops on the way and discuss what subway line we are on. Here, the lines are distinguished by color and numbers.

By looking at the map, they can tell me how many stops there are before we transfer to next line, and how many total stops to our destination. Both of my children’s navigating skills have amazed me. Sometimes they even beat me to the punch and know how many stops before our station.

Which leads me to our “What happens if we get separated?” plan. If the subway car is crowded or a door closes too fast and we get separated, what do you do? (I have had happen this happen in a Korean elevator, but that is a whole other story for another time.)

If anyone gets stuck on the train, they are supposed to get off at the next stop, take a seat at the first bench they come to on the platform, and wait. If anyone is left at the station, they take a seat on the platform and wait. Either way, someone will be right there to get them.

Other Useful Tidbits

Most subways have a discount child fare, as well as a special gate for stroller friendly access. Some even offer special seating in the subway car.

Some subway systems have cell phone applications for maps. You put in your starting point and destination. From there, it will give you arrival times, stops, and transfers.

Here in Seoul, most subway stations are also fallout shelters equipped with emergency supplies, including gas masks.

No matter where in the world you are, or what subway system you are using, be sure to look up their website for more local tips on traveling and safety. The subway is an easy, fun way to take an adventure in the big city with kids.

Helping them to be prepared in case of an emergency will give you all a peaceful mind.

The post Subway Safety with Kids by Jessica Hentze appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>
http://thesurvivalmom.com/subway-safety-kids/feed/ 1
When Mom Can’t Help: 3 Things Your Family Should Know http://thesurvivalmom.com/mom-cant-help-3-things-family-know/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/mom-cant-help-3-things-family-know/#comments Tue, 22 Jul 2014 10:00:07 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=15536 Moms do a lot. In fact, I tell my mom all the time that she deceived me growing up! I had NO clue how much Moms really did until I became one. The list never ends, the house is in constant disarray, Read More

The post When Mom Can’t Help: 3 Things Your Family Should Know by Jamie S. appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>

when-mom-can't-help

Moms do a lot. In fact, I tell my mom all the time that she deceived me growing up! I had NO clue how much Moms really did until I became one. The list never ends, the house is in constant disarray, and someone is whining at any given moment (at least in my house).

About the only thing that scares me more than my kids, is the thought of what they would do without me. As much as I hope and pray I will be there for them at any given moment, that may not be the case.

This year I’ve definitely had a rude awakening as I’ve witnessed a teenager lose her mom to cancer, a young mother die after giving birth to her 2nd child, and the most tragic event of all happened in our community last week when a family of 7 was attacked leaving only one survivor.

Fortunately these instances are rare, but at the same time, what if something did happen to me and I couldn’t be there to help my family? What would I want them to know? Be able to do? Or even remember about me?

Here are a few things I thought of, but I would love for you to add to my list and share your thoughts below!

3 Things Your Family Should Know When Mom Can’t Help:

- Where Important Items are Located

Knowing where things are located might seem obvious, but I’m surprised how often my husband can’t find things, usually because I move things around and forget to tell him.

So I encourage you to think of all the important items your family needs to know about and take them on a tour of your house. You can even use inventory sheets or make a map of your house if it helps, just keep it in a safe place.

Here are a few of the items I made sure to point out in our home tour:

- How to do Things for Themselves

Currently my children are fairly useless at doing much, unless it comes to Minecraft where they can manage to build entire cities, make rollercoasters for their animals, and keep away from zombies.

I really am trying to change that and am working on incorporating more real-world skills into their lives, instead of just virtual ones.

I believe one of the greatest gifts moms can give to their children is to teach them how to do things for themselves, especially if you’re not there to do it for them. I know it’s a lot easier said than done, but go ahead and try teaching them how to do a few things, if nothing else hopefully they’ll appreciate you more. Maybe eventually, they will be able to do it all and you can kick back and build a few houses on Minecraft too (ok, maybe I’m dreaming;)

Here are a few things my kids will know how to do (at least in my dreams):

  • Cook (especially with the food I have stored)
  • Garden
  • Pay Bills & Manage Money
  • Clean Anything, especially Toilets
  • Pick-up after themselves
  • Basic Survival Skills (Here’s a list of 48 if you need ideas)

- How Much You Love Them

I know I said earlier it worries me to think of not being there for my kids, but I just thought of something even worse – for them to not realize how much I love them!

Does your family know how much you love them? If today was your last day, what would you want them to remember about you?

Here are a few things I try to keep up with so they can always know how much I love them, especially if I’m not here to tell them myself:

What would you want your family to know if you couldn’t help?

 

 

The post When Mom Can’t Help: 3 Things Your Family Should Know by Jamie S. appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>
http://thesurvivalmom.com/mom-cant-help-3-things-family-know/feed/ 8
Book Review: Little Jars, Big Flavors http://thesurvivalmom.com/product-review-little-jars-big-flavors/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/product-review-little-jars-big-flavors/#comments Fri, 04 Jul 2014 20:00:06 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=15765 Not a lot of produce but reluctant to waste? No problem! Southern Living presents a 2013 cookbook with something for everyone! Whether you’re a beginner, a seasoned canner, or a microwave-only cook, you’ll find inspiration in Little Jars, Big Flavors Read More

The post Book Review: Little Jars, Big Flavors by Kris appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>

Little Jars, Big FlavorsNot a lot of produce but reluctant to waste? No problem!

Southern Living presents a 2013 cookbook with something for everyone! Whether you’re a beginner, a seasoned canner, or a microwave-only cook, you’ll find inspiration in Little Jars, Big Flavors from author/chef Virginia Willis.

Little Jars Big Flavors For Beginners

Detailed instructions with beautiful color photos will walk you through the process. And because there’s no pressure canning (water bath-only recipes), no need to worry that you’ll blow up your kitchen.

Included are helpful tips to prevent messes; what you aren’t allowed to “fudge” in processing and ingredients; and full-color pictures of gel tests. It’s much easier than learning the hard way.

It’s fine if you don’t have a huge garden and tons of produce. Blueberry-lemon jam only calls for 3 cups of blueberries and yields 4 half-pint jars. No worries that you’ll waste a bunch of produce doing it wrong. Even if nothing seals, you only have a few jars to eat and share. Take the kiddos to a local pick-your-own farm and see how much produce makes it home. We only had a few cups left, anyway!

The layout includes at-a-glance references for prep time so you can determine whether you have time to preserve what’s in your refrigerator just before leaving for the weekend.

For Experienced Canners

You’ll love the new twists on old favorites. I still had some strawberry and blackberry jam left from last season and didn’t want to put up more of the same. Soooo…I now have some strawberry-basil and strawberry-port jam, as well as blackberry-black pepper jam. The coolest thing? The time and produce investment is small enough to experiment. If you don’t like the results, you only have half a dozen jars to give away. I plan to try peach-rosemary jam, mimosa marmalade, and double-onion marmalade when the harvest changes.

Experimenting is extra fun because the author includes ideas and even recipes for using your yummy concoctions. Onion marmalade sounded pretty gross—until I read that it can be a quick substitute for carmelized onions in my recipes. What an awesome shortcut!

And for even shorter shortcuts, try some freezer pickles or jams or even microwave nectarine-ginger preserves. The flavor combinations in Little Jars, Big Flavors are different from anything in my Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving, my go-to guide in the summer.

Best Value for Purchasing

I ordered my paperback copy for $9.95 plus shipping from the Lakeside Collection online catalog. It lays fairly flat during use, so I’m glad I didn’t pony up for the $32.00+ hardback version from Amazon. Some used paperbacks are just under $9 on Amazon, but for an extra buck, I like the assurance of a pristine book. No kindle version exists at the time of this writing, but for beginners, I think an e-version would be a mistake.

The Very BEST Part

An entire chapter is devoted to what the author calls “Putting-Up Parties”. I LOVE this idea! If you’ve ever thought about starting a prepper’s circle, this is a completely fun and non-threatening way to get started.

Think of it like a “cookie-exchange” party. A few women get to share the work, chat together in the kitchen, share a few snacks, and at the end of the day, everyone has a few different recipes to take home rather than a year’s worth of one item.

Because the recipes require just a little produce, each lady can bring the ingredients for one recipe for very little cost. Go ahead and call up a couple of church ladies, the moms from your homeschool circle, or the parents of your kids’ friends! It’s a great way to get to know each other. And chances are, if some of them are already canners, they may possess other skills you can learn from them. (I’m still hoping someone can show me how to use the sewing machine I got for Christmas!)

I’m planning a “putting-up party with my sisters-in-law who aren’t currently prepping. They’ll walk away with new skills and confidence (and a few jars of awesome goodies). This will definitely open the door to conversations about other food preservation methods I’m trying and other efforts to be prepared.

We’ll only mess up one kitchen. The dads will spend a day herding kiddos, and the cousins will spend some quality time together.

As a side benefit, I’m eager to try out some of my sister’s expensive Pampered Chef gadgets that I haven’t been able to talk myself into. The last time I went on and on about how much I loved my mom’s strawberry huller and my mother-in-law’s apple peeler/corer/slicer, I got one of each as a gift. Just sayin’.

Canning for “Real Women”, not Martha Stewarts

Believe me, I’m no Martha Stewart—but I don’t really have to be. This chapter suggests canning recipes for each season with some overlapping ingredients, snack and beverage suggestions, and lovely ways to decorate those beautiful jars for gift-giving. If you have kids, have them help out with making teacher gifts for Christmas or teacher appreciation.

Even if that’s not really your thing, you can probably pretend for a few hours to make prepper connections in the least awkward way I’ve ever seen. At the very least, you get to walk away with a variety of goodies that you didn’t spend all day doing by yourself.

If a friend shared this post with you via Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest, consider yourself invited to her next “Putting-Up Party.” You can host the next one in the fall when you’ll be eager to put big apple, pear, and cranberry flavors into little jars.

*Kris and The Survival Mom team have no affiliation with the author or publisher.

The post Book Review: Little Jars, Big Flavors by Kris appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

]]>
http://thesurvivalmom.com/product-review-little-jars-big-flavors/feed/ 2