Surviving on Shoestrings by Donna Miller
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Surviving on Shoestrings by Donna Miller

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  • Weekly Book Bonanza Giveaway! Book One.

    If you have not had the opportunity to get your hands on this valuable resource guide, I highly recommend that you do!

    It’s a Disaster…and what are YOU gonna do about it? has been used in First Responder Training across the country!  How much better could your family be prepared than to have at hand the very same book that so many First Responders use!

    The book doesn’t read like a novel nor is it difficult to ‘get through.’  In fact, it lends itself to reading in short segments of time based upon your need, area of potential disaster or interest.  Even if you are in the midst of a crisis, the way this book is set up – it’s so easy to find what you need in just seconds that it is a far better field guide than most other emergency manuals I’ve read.

    From Family to Business preparedness or Natural to man-made disasters It’s a Disaster…and what are YOU gonna do about it? really covers the widest base of events I’ve ever seen in one book.  Not only does it cover the event – it gives you the wherewithal to handle living through them!  The step-by-step bullet points that help you stay on track for so many possible events help you feel ready with almost endless contingency plans.

    As the author’s state on their website It’s a Disaster…and what are YOU gonna do about it?  truly “helps families and businesses “be aware, be prepared, and have a plan” for most types of emergencies and disasters (including Terrorism).  The 266-page paperback provides quick-reference instructional bullets in 2-color format. It is not written to alarm people, rather it suggests tips on what to think about and do before, during and after specific types of scenarios, as well as how to administer basic first aid.”

    I hope you’ll enter this Weekly Book Bonanza Giveaway #1 for your opportunity to win it and add it to your bug out bag, emergency bin or back pack.

    - See more at: http://www.yourpreparationstation.com/preparedness-journey-blog/book-bonanza-giveaway-its-a-disaster/#sthash.c6WUcs4t.dpuf

    If you have not had the opportunity to get your hands on this valuable resource guide, I highly recommend that you do!

    It’s a Disaster…and what are YOU gonna do about it? has been used in First Responder Training across the country!  How much better could your family be prepared than to have at hand the very same book that so many First Responders use!

    The book doesn’t read like a novel nor is it difficult to ‘get through.’  In fact, it lends itself to reading in short segments of time based upon your need, area of potential disaster or interest.  Even if you are in the midst of a crisis, the way this book is set up – it’s so easy to find what you need in just seconds that it is a far better field guide than most other emergency manuals I’ve read.

    From Family to Business preparedness or Natural to man-made disasters It’s a Disaster…and what are YOU gonna do about it? really covers the widest base of events I’ve ever seen in one book.  Not only does it cover the event – it gives you the wherewithal to handle living through them!  The step-by-step bullet points that help you stay on track for so many possible events help you feel ready with almost endless contingency plans.

    As the author’s state on their website It’s a Disaster…and what are YOU gonna do about it?  truly “helps families and businesses “be aware, be prepared, and have a plan” for most types of emergencies and disasters (including Terrorism).  The 266-page paperback provides quick-reference instructional bullets in 2-color format. It is not written to alarm people, rather it suggests tips on what to think about and do before, during and after specific types of scenarios, as well as how to administer basic first aid.”

    I hope you’ll enter this Weekly Book Bonanza Giveaway #1 for your opportunity to win it and add it to your bug out bag, emergency bin or back pack.

    - See more at: http://www.yourpreparationstation.com/preparedness-journey-blog/book-bonanza-giveaway-its-a-disaster/#sthash.c6WUcs4t.dpuf
    If you have not had the opportunity to get your hands on this valuable resource guide, I highly recommend that you do!

    It’s a Disaster…and what are YOU gonna do about it? has been used in First Responder Training across the country!  How much better could your family be prepared than to have at hand the very same book that so many First Responders use!

    The book doesn’t read like a novel nor is it difficult to ‘get through.’  In fact, it lends itself to reading in short segments of time based upon your need, area of potential disaster or interest.  Even if you are in the midst of a crisis, the way this book is set up – it’s so easy to find what you need in just seconds that it is a far better field guide than most other emergency manuals I’ve read.

    From Family to Business preparedness or Natural to man-made disasters It’s a Disaster…and what are YOU gonna do about it? really covers the widest base of events I’ve ever seen in one book.  Not only does it cover the event – it gives you the wherewithal to handle living through them!  The step-by-step bullet points that help you stay on track for so many possible events help you feel ready with almost endless contingency plans.

    As the author’s state on their website It’s a Disaster…and what are YOU gonna do about it?  truly “helps families and businesses “be aware, be prepared, and have a plan” for most types of emergencies and disasters (including Terrorism).  The 266-page paperback provides quick-reference instructional bullets in 2-color format. It is not written to alarm people, rather it suggests tips on what to think about and do before, during and after specific types of scenarios, as well as how to administer basic first aid.”

    I hope you’ll enter this Weekly Book Bonanza Giveaway #1 for your opportunity to win it and add it to your bug out bag, emergency bin or back pack.

    a Rafflecopter giveaway


    The first giveaway begins Sunday, June 1 at 12AM Eastern Time and runs through Saturday – June 7, 11:59PM Eastern.

    The weekly winner will be notified via email within 10 hours of a giveaway ending and has 48hrs to claim his/her book via reply.

    Weekly Book Bonanza Giveaway List – (order may vary):

     

    • It’s a Disaster & What are you Gonna Do about It? by Bill & Janet Leibsch
    • Survival Medicine Handbook by Dr. Bones & Nurse Amy
    • Prepper’s Long Term Survival Guide by Jim Cobb
    • The Prepper’s Complete Book of Disaster Readiness by Jim Cobb
    • The Prepper’s Cookbook by Tess Pennington
    • The Nautical Prepper by Capt William E. Simpson II
    • Jake & Miller’s Big Adventure by Bernie Carr
    • Doctor Prepper’s Making the Best of Basics by James Stevens
    • The Survival Mom by Lisa Bedford
    • Naturally Healthy Cuisine: Real Food for Real Families by Vickilynn Haycraft
    • Food Storage for Self Sufficiency and Survival by Angela Paskett
    • Whole Wheat Bread Making by Donna Miller
    • Simply Canning: Survival Guide to Safe Home Canning by Sharon Peterson
    • Prepper’s Food Storage by Julie Languille
    • The Darkness After by Scott B. Williams
    • The Prepper’s Workbook by Scott B. Williams & Finazzo
    • Meals in a Jar by Julie Languille
    • More Food From Small Spaces by Margaret Park
    • The Preparedness Planner (ebook Bundle of 2) by Jennifer Osuch
    • Color Coded HomeSchool Planner (eBook) by Jennifer Osuch
    • Duct Tape 911 by James Hubbard, MD MPH

    I hope you’ll enter each one, each week!  Look for another update when the first one opens in a few days!

    Best of Success to you!

    - See more at: http://www.yourpreparationstation.com/sharing

  • Eight (8) Items NOT to keep under the kitchen sink!

    What NOT to put under the Kitchen Sink

    What are the items NOT to put under your kitchen sink?  We've been taught or simply developed habits of storing certain items under the kitchen sink.


    With plumbing, humidity and a variable heating and cooling environment - you might be surprised exactly what doesn't work well there that you've just tossed under the kitchen sink out of habit.  Our mother's may have put some things there that really do better elsewhere.  They learned some things from their mothers and so forth.  But are there some things that don't really belong under the kitchen sink? 

    Yes.  What they are may surprise you:

    • Fire Extinguishers
    • Potatoes
    • Flip-top Containers
    • Boxed Items
    • Steel Wool/ Brillo Pads
    • Onions
    • The Trash Can
    • Rags

    Listen to this episode of the Surviving on Shoestrigns Show to hear just why these don’t bode well in the cabinet under your kitchen sink. You may be losing money, wasting food or simply making it inconvenient for yourself just because it's 'what you've always done.'  Maybe it’s time to rethink what's under the kitchen sink!

    I'd love for you to leave a comment too...are there some things I missed that you think don't belong under the kitchen sink but many folks still keep them there?

     

    For more great radio shows from my fellow hosts - please follow this link - I think y'all will enjoy these too!    An InLinkz Link-up


  • Make do and Mend. Buy nothing new for a year.

    Am I issuing a challenge? Maybe...

    BPhoto Credit: My Make Do & Mend Yearut it is exactly this type of self-imposed challenge that has made an impact on the life of Jen Gale. I had the joy of interviewing here last week.  The show airs here on: Surviving On Shoestrings and you may enjoy taking a listen.  We got into the impact upon other family members, children, waist/garbage and societal norms...then of course the actual projects both exciting and daunting ones.  It was one of my favorite interviews on the new show this year so far!  I intend to have her on other shows simply because we ran out of time!

    As I spoke with Jen and heard her passion for spending an entire year making do and mending, buying nothing new (but food and if need be, underwear).... I heard a sense of freedom and release from social pressures in her voice that reminded me that making this change as a choice now will better prepare us should we be called upon to live this way more out of necessity than choice in the future.

    Not only is it good stewardship to make do and mend virtually everything...but it creates a sense of confidence and community to do so.   Do you remember repair shops?  Those were skilled individuals who were gainfully employed just to make things we (the unskilled) had last longer! As a society we hardly ever take anything to be repaired any more, much less repair it ourselves.  So I guess I am issuing a challenge... or perhaps just a self-diagnostic set of questions to get things started:

    • Could I go all year without buying anything new?
    • Could my family & friends understand and support this?
    • Do I toss something and just buy a new one to replace it too easily?
    • What would be my biggest challenge to making do and mending?
    • What would be my biggest reward?
    • Am I willing to givie it a go to see the impact on... my time, my finances, my skill set? 

    After you listen to this show... Please consider leaving a comment to help inspire others if you are willing to do this or have done it in any areas of your life!  Be transparent too and share if this would be a serious struggle for you or your family.

    ___________________

    For more great shows from my fellow hosts on the same network click this link below:


     

  • Want help with Decluttering Decissions? Toss this. Keep that.

    Surviving on Shoestrings: Throw away cartoon

    In the last episode of "Surviving On Shoestrings" that aired Monday 2/3/104 I took on an article which I had recived via email.  It was supposed to help me to declutter.  Well, it didn't really track with me too well.

    Decluttering Decisions are always a bit overwhelming. If you lisent, you'll hear my thought process as I discusses how to evaluate what to keep and what to throw away in order to have an orderly home and yet still have what you need on hand when you need it.

    Want more great radio shows from top femail hosts?  Sure you do...hahaha. Listen to my friends here:

    Stop by and connect with me on Facebook too!

    Best Blessings,

    Donna Miller 

  • Preparedness Giveaway - a chance to win one of 3 prizes!

     

    preparedness-giveaway

    I am part of "The Preparedness Blogging Brigade" and we have teamed up with some great companies to bring you this mega giveaway just in time for Christmas.

    If I'm being totally honest, sometimes I struggle with being part of the Blogging Brigade because it means that I can't enter to win these cool prizes. Sad But then again - I love that we can offer them to YOU! I want you to win these (I mean, FREE is a great way to stretch dollars isn't it?), get prepared or share as a gift with someone who needs to be more prepared but cannot afford it. So I'm happy to pass this up and pass this on. Cool

    The giveaway begins December 2, 2013 and ends on December 9, 2013 at 11:59pm. The winners will be notified by email and will have 24 hours to respond before a new winner is drawn.

    There will be 3 different winners.

    Preparedness Christmas Giveaway

    First Prize Package:

    Stainless Steel-Large Kelly Kettle (Complete Kit): A perfect item for survival or camping kits. Includes the cooking pot, pot support, grill, and pot gripper/handle.

    AquaBrick Kit 2000K: A fast flowing gravity fed water filter: The AquaBrick will safely filter 2000 gallons of water and is portable. The AquaBrick removes waterborne microbial and viral pathogens, spores and heavy metals. It also removes hydrocarbons, radiation, fluoride, chlorine and other harmful substances.

    Second Prize Package

    WonderMill Wonder Junior Deluxe: Largely regarded as the best hand mill, this grain mill comes with both stone and stainless steel milling heads, a wide double clamp, four guides, and a cleaning brush. Personal note - we own this mill and I LOVE it!

    Honeyville Grain Case of Hard Red Wheat: The core of most prepper's food storage is wheat. An entire case contains 6 #10 cans and is perfect for long term storage or to use as soon as it arrives.

    Third Prize Package

    Royal Berkey System: The Royal Berkey will safely filter untreated water at the rate of about 4 gallons an hour. It comes with two filters, serves 2-6 people, and holds approx 3.25 gallons. The Royal Berkey system removes pathogenic bacteria, cysts and parasites along with pesticides, VOCs, organic solvents, and radon 222 trihalomethanes.

    MultiFlame Mini Tool: The MulitFlame Mini Tool from Trayer Wilderness is a 6" fire piston and so much more. You can start a fire, clean your pistol, use as a screwdriver or anything else that fits a 1/4 in hex bit.

    All you have to do to enter is fill out the Rafflecopter form linked below by signing in with your Facebook account or email address. (We'll need this info in order to contact you if you win.)

    After getting to the Rafflecopter form below - Start by clicking Easy Entry for Everyone (no social media accounts required) below and after that each +1 that you click adds another entry and raises your chances to win!

    The giveaway begins December 2, 2013 and ends on December 9, 2013 at 11:59pm. The winners will be notified by email and will have 24 hours to respond before a new winner is drawn. You must be 18 years or older to enter.

    Prizes will be shipped to U.S. residents only. Residents of other countries may enter but are responsible for paying the shipping cost.

    Best of success to you!!

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

  • How to save on gasoline

    gaspistol

    Do y'all remember the 'gas pill' that was sold all over the place a few years back?  It hit the peak of popularity when gas prices had soared to some of their highest in years!  The premis was that you put this pill in your gas tank and it made the gas last longer (I'm simplifying it).  The truth was found out shortly after the mega-hit sensation was found to completely ruin your gas line and thus car.  

    The 'gas pill' had a sad ending, but a true attempt at the root: We want/need to curb our gas use/expense in the USA.

    Not as quick of a fix as the 'gas pill' promise is a tried and true list of 'forming new habits as it relates to gasoline.  Sometimes we simply do 'this' or 'that' out of habit and time constraints that with just a little tweaking and thinking on these habitual actions we can save a bundle.  Making that tank of gas go further, last longer and more efficiently is the goal.  Looking at how we use, over use and spend our expensive gas, in ways we may not even realize it can help us all save money and stretch this consumable resorce. 

    This topic was the focus for yet another short (30 minute) episode of Surviving on Shoestrings.  I hope you can take a moment to listen and pick up some new ideas and form new habits to help you make the gas in your tank take you farther, last longer and cost you less. 

    Surviving on Shoestrings: Gasoline savings tips

    Also you can keep updated about shows as they air by coming to "LIKE" my Surviving on Shoestrings Facebook Page

  • Curbing Clothing Costs

    clothing costThere is a little bit more to curbing the cost of clothing than just 'buy it used'.  While that has an impact of on cost and is a foundational element the topic goes much farther than that. 

    You can listen to this recent episode of Surviving on Shoestrings to hear my heart and take on the matter and find out:

    • Where to buy it used for the best quality.
    • Difference between Consignment Shops, Thrift Stores and Garage/Yard Sales and Hand-me-downs.
    • Knowing what you need when you find the deal.
    • Methods on how to shop at each place.
    • Knowing sizes without other family members being with you.
    • Used shoe buying measurements.
    • How to check out the clothing.
    • How to care for the cloting once you own it.
    • What really is that LINT in the dryer?
    • Learn basic sewing skills.
    • Marking clothing to hand down.

    I go into greater detail on the audio linked above. Hopefully you can hear how we've done it and glean some additional tips for curbing your clothing cost for you and your family.

  • Dumpster Diving

    dumpster-CC-okayedReally? Who would go dumpster diving?  At one time, I might have turned up my nose at the thought of it... but after losing everything material that we'd worked for years, I have to say, I've a new found admiration for this humble and lost art.  It can be done without disgrace. 

    In this episode of Surviving on Shoestrings  I go over some of my favorite finds that would have been considered 'trash'. I've found things from a high-chair that served all of our kids (and later a stuffed teddy bear) to recycle bin diving to pack items for storage/moving/selling when we lost our home.  I also go through some do's and don'ts if you're new to the adventure that is dumpster diving!

    I hope you'll listen to the show because I tend to talk more from the heart when I speak and it's my desire to help others who may be struggling and barely getting by... it does get better...even if it's not financially much better...things do get better and you can have FUN in this process.

    I'd love to hear from you - please comment below.  I may read your comment as an update on an upcoming radio show!  Who knows who else YOU may encourage and inspire!

    Have you ever gone dumpster diving?  Was there something that drove you to this choice or did you simply have a light bulb go on in your head that it was a viable idea? Please share your story!

  • Controlling the Food Budget

    Maybe we're just weird or we eat differently than most people, but the food budget is one of the most controlable things our household. All it takes is a little focus and creativity. In this episode of Surviving on Shoestrings, I share my methods and strategies to tame the food cost beast.

    Methods such as: A Cost Book, sale buying with discount coupons, doing away with unhealthy food and convenience food,more affordable alternatives, gardening, harvesting and preserving, purchasing generic items, damaged or sell-by-date sales, delicatessens ends, consuming even more plant based meals,consuming more soups, one dish wonders and stir-fry, make dishes from scratch, re-purposing left-overs, make use of every little thing, frugal snacking makes sense, serving sizes, product comparison and exactly the best ways to begin bulk purchasing.

    We've had to stretch what we've had for so long - that I hope our lessons learned can help you too!

  • When financial struggles impact the kids

    Try as we may or hope as we like - it is a fact: Financial struggles impact the kids. The biggest problem is we may not know exactly in what way?  The outcome of the impact could be positive or negative - and only time will tell.

    I know that when our kids were very small, we were very poor. We really didn't realize just how poor until we found out our income was about 10% below the poverty line at the time.  We just lived as best we could and created a home on what we had.  Those financial struggles had a very positive impact on our kids as they grew. We went through a period of monetary stability and growth for a while even without them realizing a difference.

    On the contrary, when we again we faced even more difficult times during their pre-teen and teen years, we saw that some of our actions and some of how they reacted from our struggles as parents seemed to have a more negative affect on the kids.

    It's not all about the bottom line when you're struggling.... there is always a ripple effect.  Kids often get caught in the current that we create.

    It's so hard to get this heartfelt topic across and be transparent in writing - so I hope you'll listen to this radio show that aired last week and get a better feel for what can't quite be shared in a blog post.

    Humbly submitted in hopes it will help someone...

    ______________________________________________________________________

    About the author and show hostess:

    Donna Miller is blessed to be the wife of  28 years with the love of her life Joseph, the mother of three home-school graduates and has one daughter-in-law.

    She is the hostess of three radio shows:  “Surviving on Shoestrings” The Survival Mom Network, “Your Preparation Station” on the Preparedness Radio Network and “Encouragement in the Kitchen”.

    She and her husband are the Organizers of WNC Preparedness Group in Asheville, NC.  She is an Adjunct Instructor for Frontier Christian University. She teaches local classes & ladies retreats for people to learn hands-on lost skills. She has been a both guest and host on internet and broadcast radio talk-shows and in television interviews. She is a teacher, author, sought-after speaker and trainer.

    She and her husband are the owners of Millers Grain House and the Always Ready Store and are the founders of PREPARE Magazine.  Through each endeavor they hope to offer readiness and simple living tips to spread the message of preparedness through Faith, Family and Fun not fear.

    Get to know Donna a little more and pick up some more budget stretching tips by watching and subscribing to these video channels:

    Millers Grain House Video Archives - Real food and ideas on a real tight budget!

    Your Preparation Station - Bugging-in - our real life adventure while stretching funds!

     

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