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Wednesday, December 23, 2009


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read more “AMAZING LOVE!”

Thursday, December 17, 2009


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Frankincense is an amazing healer. It’s one of the items I would select for an emergency survival pack. I make that statement because this gum resin can make a huge difference when you are fighting a fast-moving infection.

Frankincense is sold as little pebbles of hardened gum, powder and/or essential oil. The powder and gum granules are light-weight. The granules are easier to handle (in my opinion) than the powder and can be ground to smaller bits if needed.

Frankincense can be used for steam inhalation or aromatherapy if you are dealing with bronchitis, colds, and other respiratory ailments. I’ve seen it used to great benefit as part of a regimen for recovery from pneumonia. I place several granules of Frankincense in combination with dried mullein and eucalyptus leaves in a crock pot with filtered water to steam the air in a room. In rustic conditions, you can burn Frankincense with hot embers placed into a fireproof container (or on a rock) as incense.

As a topical wound dressing, Frankincense is regenerating, restorative and a skin rejuvenator. Because its properties are somewhat astringent, oil infused with Frankincense has been used as a uterine tonic and massage oil following childbirth. By easing inflammations, Frankincense promotes the healing of blemishes, sores, scars, skin ulcers and wounds. In some places it is used as a treatment for leprosy. (See "HOW TO INFUSE OILS")

I know of a case where a patient had a weeping leg wound that had a foul odor. Red streaks and swelling warned that the infection was advancing. Good wound care was followed, but the infection persisted. Frankincense was applied after all else was tried. The leg immediately responded. Upon examination by a physician, he was surprised that the wound only required stitches and that the leg did not need amputation. It had been his experience that such severe cases resulted in loss of the limb.

I witnessed an instance where an arm was branded on a hot oven rack. At the time of injury, all that was available to dress the wound was honey and a very old batch of plantain infused olive oil. Later, the area was gently cleaned and a proper dressing applied. The wound was an inch long and (at its worst) about one quarter of an inch deep. Although the burn was 2nd degree, there was only faint blistering. Early indications were that the wound was healing quickly, but it became infected. The arm became swollen; the wrist and arm painful to use; red streaks began to appear. The inflammation reduced upon application of a garlic poultice, but did not fully retreat. Upon application of olive oil infused with Frankincense, the inflammation and pain retreated in less than 12 hours. Within 24 hours, the pain ceased and the wound began to heal from the inside. Within 48 hours there was no more swelling, the wound had closed with a healthy pink, and the wound was filling in from the bottom layers of the skin. Within the week, it appeared to be a faint scar from a long-forgotten injury.

If available, Frankincense can be an invaluable tool in effective wound care. If you utilize an essential oil of Frankincense for medicinal purposes, make certain that the product was steam distilled or alcohol extracted rather than by some other chemical solvent method. Most manufacturers will be glad to answer your questions over the telephone. Note that manufacturing methods can change over time, so you may wish to check labels each time you purchase, even if it is the same brand name.

This article is for information purposes only. It is not meant as a substitute for medical care. The methods described are employed at the risk of the reader.

Saturday, November 14, 2009


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I don’t think there is a lot of nutritional value in a can of soda, but the can itself could prove useful in a survival situation. It is possible to use an empty soda can to start a fire. In the event you find yourself in need of fire for cooking or heat, a discarded can could prove most beneficial.

The concave bottom of these cans is designed to give strength to the container. It is possible to polish this surface to a high sheen to create fire. The curved reflective surface is able to collect the sun’s rays and focus them to a single point, igniting flammable tinder.

Once you’ve found an empty pop can, utilize materials you have on hand to polish it to a mirrored gloss. If you have the 0000 steel wool – the finest grade – you will be able to accomplish this with just a few minutes of rubbing. You can also burnish the surface with a baking soda paste, toothpaste or a paste made with scouring powder.

Once this is accomplished, you’ll want to finish with a polish. To polish the surface you can rub it with a bar of chocolate, crayons, candles, Vaseline, or any other waxy material. Apply the material to the bottom of the can and rub with a cloth, repeating this process until you’ve gotten the desired effect. A word of caution, don’t eat the chocolate after it is used for this project as it will have absorbed the aluminum a known toxin.

When the surface has a mirror finish, point it toward the sun. To find the focal point, hold a small scrap of paper between the can and the sun, moving it closer or farther away from the can until the sun’s rays are focused into a small dot of light. Visually mark this spot and hold your tinder there until it begins to smoke and then flame.

You will need about an hour’s time to polish the can’s surface. Igniting your tinder will take less time, depending on the quality of your materials.

This article is provided for information only. The reader assumes all risks and liability in the implementation of these methods and is urged to use common sense and sound judgment in its application.


Thursday, November 5, 2009


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Learning in a secure environment is further reinforced when you raise the level of intensity (fun or excitement), repeat the activity and find ways to capture the student’s attention for a sustained period of time. One of the goals of effective instruction is to find a way to incorporate these qualities and thereby increase learning.

Institutions of learning don’t always make room for these elements. However advertisers and students of human nature are free to pursue them. A major car company recently began a contest to see who could develop the best innovation that would make a task fun and promote changed behavior. By making the tasks enjoyable, the desired behaviors were reinforced, encouraging the participants to sustain the activity and repeat it often. The very design of the project promoted learning and – over time – changes in behavior.

Why would this be of interest to you? It is because these things will enhance your learning as you attempt to acquire new skills. Whether the skills fall into the category of rustic living, herbs or natural medicine, one of the keys to survival is preparedness and education. However, that education will be hindered if your planning is characterized by a sense of fear rather than a sense of adventure. Also, no one wants to practice skills that are overwhelming and drudgery.

Take the time to relax and create some family adventure and fun together. Pursue these things as a hobby. Discover the wonders of nature that surround you. What common and useful plants are growing in your area? Take a few excursions. Pitch in to help others with their learning projects. Organize a class with friends. Make it a social time as well as a learning time. Focus on a particular skill and host a workshop or a contest in your own back yard. Your family will be enriched with the fun and memories while you are gaining information that is an investment in your future. Become a creative student and re-discover the joy of learning.


In this first example, the goal was to increase the use of trash receptacles by members of the public. Watch to see how they found a way to make using a trash can so much fun that a boy is seen looking for more trash to place inside the bin.

Here, the object was to increase bottles placed into the recycling bin. A few flashing lights later, a crowd gathered to cheer on their fellow recyclers.

We all know that taking the stairs is better for us than taking the escalator. In this video watch the time elapsed footage that shows a dramatic shift in use of the stairs when the steps are creatively covered.


Monday, November 2, 2009


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Readers of this blog will be glad to know that the publishers of THE VISION have partnered with 6 companies to help promote the new novel by best-selling author Debi Pearl. THE VISION has been on the Amazon’s Top 100 a total of 5 times since its release on 7/1/09 and has earned the right to be called an Amazon Best Seller. Now you can be part of the push to reach #1 on Barnes and Noble.

When you to order THE VISION from Barnes and Noble on 11/3 or 11/4, SIX companies will offer a 25% discount off of merchandise purchased from their web store (no other discounts apply). This is just in time for the Holidays!

As a thank you for your purchase of THE VISION, it is possible to save hundreds of dollars, depending on the products you decide to purchase. In addition to the savings, the purchase offer includes free downloadable EBooks. **

Now is the time to start your Holiday Savings! Follow the links to visit these fine merchants prior to receiving your coupon codes. REMEMBER: the purchase date must be 11/3 or 11/4 to qualify for 25% off savings and free EBooks. **

Order THE VISION by Debi Pearl from BarnesandNoble.com on November 3rd or 4th, 2009 (offer good on these days only) and you will receive coupon codes from the following companies offering 25% discounts from their webstores. Discounts cannot be combined with other discounts.

1. Ancient Healing Oils
2. The Bulk Herb Store
3. College Plus!
4. More Than Alive
5. No Greater Joy
6. The Mission Ball

PLUS! You will also receive free downloadable ebooks and bonus gifts from Gary D. Foster Consulting (see details below).

On November 3rd or 4th...
1. Visit www.DebiPearl.com
2. Click the Barnes & Noble link to place your order.
3. Email your receipt immediately to Mel Cohen to receive your coupon codes.
Coupon codes expire on 11/9/09.


Distance Learning for the 21st Century-
These days, you don't need to spend years on a college campus to earn your degree. In fact, you can cut your tuition costs by 50% and graduate in two years or less through CLEP exams and online classes. Read this EBook and start your distance learning degree today!

Earning Dual Credit: How to Combine High School and College-
High school students may not realize it but the study they're doing in high school can actually count for college credit through CLEP exams. In fact, they don't need to wait until graduation to do college-level coursework either. Find out how high schoolers can graduate college by age 18 for a fraction of the time and cost of the traditional college system.

Herbal Alternatives-
You will discover how herbs can be used as healthy alternatives. This book provides “How To” directions for numerous home remedies for adults and children. Discover the use of herbs as; Antibiotics, Tinctures, Oil Extracts, dosages and more. Learn to make your own Salves and Ointments. The secrets of building immunity in your children are reveled. This is a MUST READ!

The Foster Letter is a biweekly publication that will be sent to you via email. It provides a Religious Market Update, and is An Executive Marketplace Intelligence Report for Business and Ministry Decision Makers.

Thursday, October 29, 2009


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Cooking over an open fire doesn’t mean you have to give up your favorite baked and roasted foods. You might even find that your old favorites are greatly enhanced when cooked in a Dutch oven. When cooking over an open fire, use a Dutch oven with a lipped lid and three feet on the bottom.

Don’t use a metal utensil on a properly seasoned cast iron pot or pan. Use wooden utensils as metal will remove the nice coating you’ve worked so hard to put there.

For Dutch oven cooking, use hard wood to build a hot fire at least an hour earlier than your cooking start time. Don’t use ‘soft’ resinous wood or commercial charcoal. Soft, resinous woods (like pine) tend to burn cool and produce a lot of black soot. This is bad for your fireplace and it makes a mess on your cookery – and it’s not so great for the cook, either. Because commercial charcoal is often filled with chemicals and additives that bind them into uniform lumps and increase their flammability, I don’t use them for my cook fire. Learn to build a nice fire with hard wood and you won’t be bothered with either of these. Make sure a good bed of red coals has been laid. Use an oven mitt or cloth to protect your hands as well as a curved iron tool to lift the lid from your pot.

If needed, wipe the inside of your pot (including the lid) with a paper towel and olive oil. While you prepare your ingredients, place the lid on your Dutch oven and set it near the fire to warm. This is similar to pre-heating your standard oven. Pre-heating your pot will allow the oil to penetrate as the iron warms and allows the food to properly cook. The lid keeps ashes from flying into the pot. If your recipe calls for peppers, onions, or carrots, I add them to the oven at this point to simmer a bit and to provide a cushion between the bottom of the pot and the rest of my ingredients.

Prepare your ingredients to be added to the pot. Don’t forget your seasonings. Move your heated Dutch oven a comfortable distance from your fire. Use a curved piece of metal to remove the hot lid.

Add layers of your other ingredients. If you are cooking rice, this is when you would add your water/broth and the rice. Add any additional vegetables. The last ingredient I add is my meat as the juices from the meat will help season the vegetables/rice/potatoes beneath it. Be mindful of the depth of your pot at this point as you don’t want your food to touch the underside of your pot’s lid. If you are baking bread or a desert, place the batter/dough/ingredients into the pot just as you would before placing it into a regular kitchen oven. Replace the lid.

Use a shovel to move some hot coals to the edge of the fire into a small pile. I find that this makes things much more manageable than trying to place the Dutch oven into the fire. Set your Dutch oven on onto this small bed of coals and then begin to shovel hot coals onto the pot’s lid. Once you’ve evenly covered the lid with hot coals, and made sure there is a good bed beneath, shovel a bit of ash over the live coals. This is called banking your fire. It allows the coals to retain their heat as they burn slowly because they aren’t exposed to too much oxygen.

Allow your food to cook about the same time as you would in a conventional oven (assuming you have a good bed of coals), possibly 10 minutes more. Use your shovel to remove the live coals from the top when finished. A whisk broom can remove any ash dust. Using a pad, lift the pot by the handle, protecting your hand from the heat. Move the vessel off of the live coals and set it away from the fire. Lift the lid with a sturdy piece of curved metal and set it to the side. Check your food. If done, serve with a wooden serving spoon. If not, replace the lid, return the pot to the small bed of coals it sat on previously, replacing more coals onto the lid. Wait a few more minutes and check again.

If your first try results in a bit of burned crust, that’s fine. You will soon get the hang of it. The wonderful aroma of hot food will soon silence the critics that will gladly eat around the burnt edges. There aren’t often leftovers. They are ready to eat!

For cleanup, gently remove any food residue from the pot with a soft sided scrub pad or wooden spoon. Eventually, you’ll likely find that a clean towel will easily do the job. If there is baked on residue, simply set the emptied pot next to your fire again and allow the remaining bits to cook to ash. Never put your Dutch oven through a dishwasher or immerse it in soapy water. This will strip it of its protective seasoning. Simply wipe the pan and recoat it with oil. You should be able to see your reflection in the bottom of your Dutch oven. Replace the lid for storage.

>>--->WANT TO LEARN MORE?<---<<

Learn about HARD CORE survival in the wilderness with PRIMITIVE WILDERNESS SKILLS, APPLIED. This DVD is offered by the Bulk Herb Store and would make a GREAT gift for the survival skills enthusiast in your life. Additionally, the new best-selling book by Debi Pearl THE VISION offers a wealth of information on herbal medicine. Why not combine the two and purchase THE VISION during the upcoming Barnes & Noble Blitz November 3rd & 4th? If you purchase THE VISION on those dates from Barnes & Noble, you’ll receive free gifts and 25% off coupon off of ANY product offered by The Bulk Herb Store. That means you could get PRIMITIVE WILDERNESS SKILLS, APPLIED at a deep discount! Additionally, you’ll be able to shop at five other vendors with that same discount. Just purchase THE VISION on November 3rd or 4th from Barnes & Noble, email melcohen@hughes.net your receipt (showing the date of purchase) and you’ll get all the details. Plan now to save when you buy THE VISION from Barnes & Noble, November 3rd or 4th -- NEXT WEEK!

The following video is a demonstration of bread-making using a Dutch oven. While the footage shows use in a conventional oven, the technique is the same -- except for the fact that you'd be using fire as your heat source as described above:


Wednesday, October 21, 2009


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If you find yourself without access to currency, bartering is a method by which you may secure items in trade. Bartering can also be used to generate goodwill and secure services from others. Being prepared to barter is the first step towards a successful trade.

As you consider which items you may wish to collect, here are some guidelines that I think may be helpful.

Remember that goods purchased for trade are not for your own personal use. Trade items are an investment designed to get you a good return – a maximum profit. This means you want to purchase bargain items, but not junk.

An example of this may be tools. For your own personal use, you want the best tools you can afford, but for trade, a discounted or used item will do just fine. You won’t be able to trade junk, but you can find good bargains at flea markets, consignment shops, pawn shops, garage sales, yard sales, estate sales, and other discount stores.

Take into account your unique skills as you invest in trade items. If you have carpentry, metalworking, leatherworking, sewing, or other skills it may be possible for you to purchase items that need repair at an even deeper discount.

Consider investing in items that have multiple uses. This will save storage space and increase your opportunities to trade. Items such as duct tape, tarps, string or twine, blankets, rubber bands, buckets, basins, soap, and assorted cloth fall into this category.

Rather than stockpiling an assortment of items, consider learning a skill set that enables you to produce valuable items. The ability to create your own ammunition is a valuable skill. For further information on the tools required for this you should research bullet swaging. Skills in metalworking, sewing, pottery, masonry, soap making, candle making and foraging will be beneficial for bartering as well as for your own personal use.

Select books which will serve as a resource for those looking for ways to become self-sufficient. Consider books that provide individuals with entertaining ways to pass the time. Valuable literature will be that which offers both an entertaining story AND an education. Shop for used books offered at a discount.

Of course, your creative mind is your most valuable resource. The ability to use something and then refit that item for other uses will serve you well. These things can be practiced now, training your brain to spot opportunities. THE VISION by best-selling author Debi Pearl is one of those books which will help spur your creative juices. An adventure novel, it is set during a time of social, economic, and political unrest where the main characters must draw upon all they’ve learned in order to survive. Get your copy today and consider the possibilities.

Thursday, October 8, 2009


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Goldenrod is the common name for Solidago virgaurea. This plant grows in Europe, Asia, and North America. This plant grows in open areas, along hillsides, and mountain ranges, reaching a height of 2 to 3 feet, with alternate leaves, and branches of golden flowers when in bloom.

The plant blossoms in the fall of the year when it is ready for harvest. In most areas, you will know goldenrod is ready as you notice the feathery yellow blossoms beside the roadway. Don’t harvest these plants as they’ve been exposed to the exhaust of cars.

The best places to find goldenrod are areas near water that have good sun exposure. I was able to find a small open span near an abandoned foot bridge. The area was filled with leggy grasses, pokeweed and goldenrod. To harvest, use sharp garden shears and cut the top 2 to 3 feet with blooms. The smell of wild carrots or a faint citrus aroma comes from the aromatic bruised parts of the plant. The flowers can be used to produce a pleasant yellow dye.

To preserve your herb, secure the cut stems with twine in small groupings (5 to 10 stems). Leave a loop in the string and hang them upside down (flowers pointing downward), with a box lid beneath them. You can hang them in a closet, spare cabinet, from a beam, in a storage room, or on a wall where they will not be disturbed. Even coat racks and hooks can be used. If the herbs are small enough, you can place a paper bag over the leaves and blooms to catch any loosened plant parts as they dry. The plants will dry in 1 to 3 weeks. You can also preserve flower arrangements in this same way.

Once dry, remove the blooms and leaves from the stem and store in a clean glass jar with a lid.

Goldenrod is a medicinally beneficial herb classified as detoxifying, regenerating and symptom regulating.

DETOXIFYING HERBS are those which help clear blockages and remove excesses. Goldenrod contains tannin and is classified as a bitter. A bitter promotes the secretion of the digestive juices as it is tasted. This herb helps the body remove excess fluid (diuretic). Traditionally, this herb was used to help remove stones in the bladder. Thick phlegm and deposits of hardened mucus (catarrh) are reported to be removed by goldenrod. Because it has antioxidant properties, goldenrod tea is useful for urinary tract infections. A digestive, goldenrod strengthens weak digestion. By promoting the perspiration (diaphoretic), this herb helps remove toxins from the body.

REGENERATING HERBS build and tone overwhelmed tissues and functions. As an astringent, goldenrod helps to shrink inflamed tissues. Its volatile oil gives goldenrod its aromatic properties. In powder form, it is used to help speed wound healing and produce scar tissue known as cicatrization. This was once commonly used to treat ulcers. The ability to promote the healing of damaged tissue classifies goldenrod as a vulnerary.

SYMPTOM REGULATING HERBS promote the relief and comfort of pain and other troublesome symptoms. Because it prevents and counteracts decay, goldenrod is classified as an antiseptic. Goldenrod tea can be used for an oral rinse. A stimulant, goldenrod increases the activity of other herbs when added to a remedy. A carminative, goldenrod helps remove gas (and the related pain) from the digestive tract. A tea infused with goldenrod, can help reduce fever. This same application can be helpful in the treatment of painful menstruation.

To make a tea, place 2 teaspoons of dried flowering stalks into a container. Pour boiling water over the herbs and cover for 10 minutes. Drink a cup three times daily until symptoms are allieviated. This tea is considered helpful in the treatment of seasonal allergies (one half cup four times daily). However, if I found it helpful, I would drink as often as I desired.

In addition to drinking the tea, it can be administered as a nasal spray. This helps with upper respiratory tract illnesses which have characteristic sore throat and low fever, accompanied by inflammation.

Strains, sprains and sore muscles respond favorably to a soothing oil infused with goldenrod. Apply this liberally and repeatedly as often as every ½ hour if needed (every three hours or so usually). This has been known to ease chronic pain and stiffness. While this will not help structural damage, it does ease inflamed and painful tissues. Wounds, cuts, and scratches are also soothed and healing is aided with the application of a salve or oil made with goldenrod because of its vulnerary properties.

The symptoms of allergies are helped with tincture of goldenrod. When formulating a tincture, you can combine goldenrod with other herbs as it increases their beneficial properties. Nettle and elderberry work well with goldenrod in this application for some individuals, but as with all herbs, the individual response (and any underlying conditions) must be taken into account when determining the best treatment. Blend goldenrod with Echinacea, yarrow and elderberry to make a tincture which can be effective in alleviating kidney and urinary tract infections. A dropperful is administered every hour until the discomfort subsides. Thereafter, several drops are taken 3 to 4 times daily for about ten days. Ten days is a good trying time and one used in Scripture to prove that healing had (or had not) taken place.* A tincture can also be used as a linament.

In later articles we will cover how to create your own oils, salves and tinctures. In the meantime, if you’re interested in learning more about herbs (and a lot of other topics) I recommend THE VISION by best-selling author Debi Pearl. Nestled neatly among an intriguing plot are tidbits and tips about the everyday use of herbs. Get your copy today.

*A study of the phrase “ten days” in the Bible can prove interesting.

This article presents ideas and information designed to enrich the reader. This is NO substitute for personalized professional care. The opinions and ideas expressed are fallible and that of the author. Readers are encouraged to be well-informed and draw their own conclusions.


Monday, September 28, 2009


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If you’ve ever worked yourself into a knot of pain, you know how inflammation can render you immobile. Your muscles are spasming. Depending on the severity of this round, you’re looking at days spent in bed, pain medications with possible nausea. You are also likely aware that pain medications don’t always work. I suspect that pain medications are more often used to keep the patient quiet than they are to manage actual pain . . . but that’s just my opinion.

There is an alternative treatment that can untie those knots. It’s called HOT COLD treatment.

Using hot and cold compresses creates a pumping action. The cold pushes blood from the area. The warmth brings fresh blood into the area. This circulates the blood and reduces the level of inflammation in the blood stream. By reducing the inflammation, the pain will be decreased and mobility will be more quickly restored.

There are two methods to accomplish this.

Stand under a shower with water running and aimed at the painful area. Turn the water on as cool/cold as you can stand for 15 seconds or so, then turn the water as warm/hot as you can stand it. Repeat this for 20 minutes or so (and yell as needed).

Take 2 bath towels and moisten them (wet and then wring them out). Get one paper bag and place into it a single moistened towel. Set your oven on its lowest setting (100 to 170). Place the closed paper bag into the oven (be sure that it isn’t touching a heating element). Get another paper bag and place into it the remaining towel. Put this into the freezer.

After 15 minutes, place the cool towel onto the painful area and set a timer for 15 minutes. When the timer rings, grab the towel from the oven and replace the warm towel with it. Return the cool towel to the freezer and repeat as long as necessary. Make it a relay, removing and replacing towels, alternating cold and heat.

Depending on temperature sensitivity, you may need to place a cloth between the towel and your skin as a buffer. I also recommend placing an insulating towel or blanket over the top to retain the heat/cold. Re-moisten the towels as needed. Remember to end the cycle with a cold towel.

I have done this through the night, napping 15 minutes at a time. It was worth it to lose only one night of sleep rather than days of productivity.

If you are in a remote area, use a fire to heat dry rocks and then wrap them in the damp towels. Be sure you use dry rocks, or they will explode in the fire. Use the towel-wrapped rocks for the warm compress. The towels damp with fresh water can be used for the cool compress. Fan the cool compress so that the moisture will begin to evaporate, making the compress even cooler. In a survival situation, the sooner everyone is at their best, the better. Inflammation from a strain or injury can lead to immobility. This is one way to combat that and get everyone back to 100% (or at least a good 75%).

This article is for information purposes only. Utilize these methods at your own risk and using your own discretion.

Thursday, September 3, 2009


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A mother was recently stunned to be reunited with her daughter. The young woman had been kidnapped as a child 20 years ago. Her case is not the only one of its kind as children are abducted and held against their will worldwide. We all want to believe that we live in a place where these things couldn’t possibly happen. However, one of the ways we best protect ourselves and our children is to prepare for the worst and live within guidelines designed to contribute to that safety.

The most dangerous lie is the one you want to believe. These are lies that you believe because the truth would be uncomfortable. “Do what I say and you won’t get hurt,” is a lie as old as the father of lies. You want to believe that you will not get hurt, so many people will obediently comply and face terrible consequences. The same thing happens when parents think that safety guidelines don’t apply to their own circumstance. To imagine that their child might be taken is nightmarish.

One way parents and children can better secure themselves is by accepting that we live in a world where predators look for easy prey. Children can be taught how to make themselves less of a target and what to do if the unthinkable occurs. Rather than traumatizing a child, these measures can give the child the confidence he or she needs to act quickly in an emergency and AVOID danger.

Talk to your child about who qualifies as a stranger. Running errands to the grocery store, the library, the bank, the park, or any other routine outing can be used to reinforce and teach important lessons.

• Point out strangers that can be trusted if your child is in danger or needs help.
• Play, “Who is a stranger” with your child. Remind them that strangers don’t always look frightening or creepy or old. Sometimes bigger children will victimize smaller children.
• Identify safe places a child could run to if they need help: stores, restaurants, homes of friends or family members, libraries, community centers, local police stations, etc.
• Observe people and talk about the difference between someone that is well-mannered and someone that is overly familiar. Help them identify when someone is ‘too’ nice or eerily perfect.

• A stranger is someone they do not know.
• They should never go with someone they do not know (not even walking in the same direction), even if they seem nice.
• Never go into a house, building or car with a stranger, no matter if they promise a reward, toy, candy or anything else, not even if the stranger knows their name. Yell “NO!” and run away.
• It’s okay to hit and hurt an adult if you feel you are in danger. It isn’t rude or bad to run for help.
• A child should never help adults who claim to be in trouble and in need of assistance. Yell, “NO!” Get away and go for help. Adults can ask adults for help. An adult has no business asking someone else’s child for help.
Avoid suspicious scenarios such as:
* Someone with a leash looking for a lost puppy.
* Someone needing directions.
* Adults asking a child for help with a broken down car.
* Someone asking for help to find something in a car or house.
• Consider using a secret word so that a child knows you sent a trusted adult. If a stranger (or other person) knows the child’s name, but not the secret word, the child should refuse to go with him/her. Change the word often.
• Always tell the child if someone else will be picking them up or giving them a ride, and tell the child who that person will be.
• They should never accept gifts from a stranger. Candy or toys, etc. Unless you are present and give permission. Anything offered when parents are not there should be refused. These items can be used as lures. Sometimes candy is drugged, or something is placed in or on the gift that will harm the child.
• They should trust their instincts. If something feels weird about a situation, they should run away. They should run for help if they feel scared. RUN – don’t walk – to the nearest safe place and TELL SOMEONE THEY NEED HELP.
• It is more important to be safe than it is to be polite. Better safe than sorry.
• Three R’s – Recognize, Respond and Report any stranger that makes them feel unsafe – IMMEDIATLEY.

• Pretend to be a stranger asking for directions or help to find a lost pet.
• Show the children how to keep a safe distance – beyond arm’s reach.
• How to run away if the stranger gets too close or grabs another child. Go get help right away.
• How to yell and scream effectively to attract the most attention.
• How to flail and kick effectively to break an abductor’s grip.
• Teach them how to claw the stranger’s eyes, ears, nose or mouth.

• Teach children to look out for each other and stay together.
Train children to never go with those who invite them to leave the group.
• Always walk or play with a safe buddy or in a group.
• Require children to check with you first before leaving your home or some other location.
• Organize parents in your neighborhood to teach their children these tips.

If these guidelines and information are incorporated as part of daily living, your child should not be traumatized. These items can be taught just as parents teach their children to wear seatbelts, watch for traffic and wash their hands before eating to safeguard their physical well-being.

Thursday, August 20, 2009


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A 65 year old woman and her 77 year old husband were recently killed by a pack of wild dogs. This didn’t happen in the outback or the African bush. This happened in the United States, in Georgia, on a quiet neighborhood street.

Feral dogs are wild dogs that have not been socialized by humans. These are usually the offspring of household pets that have been turned out by their owners. The United States leads the world in the numbers of pet dogs.

DVM Magazine (February 2009) published an article that stated the ASPCA believes that 1 million dogs and cats could become homeless within the United States due to economic reasons. As financial difficulties press, some owners prefer to abandon their animals rather than euthanize them, thinking this is a kindness.

According to the PBS documentary Dogs and More Dogs (2004), selectively bred wild foxes produce puppies that have domestic characteristics -- in both nature and appearance -- within 2 to 3 generations. The reverse is also true. As dogs are forced to fend for themselves, they will breed with other dogs that display survival traits and produce offspring with these same characteristics – often within the first or second generation.

This means that within a year, one dog can become a skilled hunter and contribute to the numbers of wild animals in a homeless pack. Deaths due to feral dog attacks are shocking, but considering these facts, it is surprising that it doesn’t happen more often.

The following information is provided to give you options to survive a wild dog attack or avoid it in the first place. Recommendations to use lethal force are given in order that you may defend life, but they may not be legal and could cause you to be liable for legal actions later. The goal here is to remain alive.

If approached by a strange animal, there are steps you can take to avoid being bitten and increase your chances of survival. Remember that dogs respond to your body language not the meaning of your words. You must use your body to communicate to the dog that you aren’t a good target.

Carry a repellent with you when on foot. A good dog repellent for aggressive nuisance pet dogs is a mixture of ammonia and hot pepper sauce in a pump sprayer set to half-way between stream and mist. This works best when sprayed into the mouth and nostrils or eyes.

Carry a weapon. These can range from baseball bats, golf clubs, knives or walking sticks. Use your imagination. Any of these can keep some distance between you and a threatening animal.

A strange animal that approaches you should be treated as a potential threat. Don’t ignore warning signs because you think that a breed is always friendly. One sign of aggression is if the animal holds his head level – not high or low. An even steady run – as opposed to a loping gait – means the dog is charging. Wolf

Don’t look the animal in the eye. This is seen as a challenge. Avert your eyes. Don’t stare the animal down.

Don’t smile. Bared teeth signify aggression and a challenge. A wild dog will want to meet this challenge.

Stand at a 45 degree angle towards the dog. Present your less dominant side, and keep the dog in your peripheral vision. This signals that you are not a threat and that you are not in a position to attack (which is face forward in dog language).

Don’t turn your back on an approaching dog. This is a sign of weakness to a dog and will encourage the animal to lunge at you.

NEVER run. This will excite the dog’s chase response – and dogs can run faster than you.

Remain still and calm. Hold your position. The dog may lose interest if he does not sense you are afraid. If you panic, the dog may feel threatened or become more confident in his attack.

If you speak, use a commanding tone. Lower your voice and issue commands like “GO HOME!” or “DOWN!” Shrieking in a shrill tone is not using a commanding voice.

If you can slowly do so, fold your arms tightly to protect your hands. If you can’t do this without exciting the dog, keep your arms lowered and your hands balled into tight fists to protect your fingers. If you extend your arms or hands, you are inviting a bite.

Put something between you and the animal. The dog will fixate on this (umbrella, hat, bag, stick) and be lured to bite the object instead of you. Remember, even if the dog bites your arm, that still leaves you one good arm and two legs to get away.

If possible back away slowly (remember not to turn your back to the dog) and try to place an obstacle between yourself and the dog. Climb on top of a car, a tree or some other object that places you out of reach of the animal. THEN you can shout for help.

Don’t pull on your dog’s leash. If you do, you will cause puncture wounds to become tears. Additionally, your tugging in the opposite direction will keep your dog from being able to defend itself. Let the leash loose. Evaluate the situation. If you have a lethal weapon, use it. If the other animal is small enough, you may be able to use your stick to beat him off of your animal, but not if he is part of a pack. If you aren’t sure you can overcome the attacking animal, it is better in my opinion to use the opportunity to escape. Living is honoring the sacrifice of your beloved pet in my opinion.

Use whatever lethal weapon you have to stop the attack.

Focus on the attacking dog FIRST. Don’t try and tug the victim away from the dog. This will rip the person’s skin and cause puncture wounds to become gashes. Force your own hand and arm into the dog’s mouth. Your larger limb can be used as a lever to open the dog’s mouth and remove the other person’s limb without tearing at the wounds. Keep driving your arm in and downward into the dog’s mouth to minimize damage to your arm. A variation of this is to jam the pointed end of a stick into the dog’s mouth, ramming it down the throat.

In the event that there is a pack of animals attacking a child, cover the child with your own body. Curl into a ball, face down, with your knees pulled inward and your hands locked behind your neck to protect your face, ears and neck. Become a rock to shield the child from further attack.

Use any weapon at your disposal to stop the dog with deadly force.

Put something between you and the dog. This can be a hat, book, purse, jacket, umbrella, stick, a bicycle or piece of lawn furniture – whatever is on hand. If nothing else is available offer your arm, preferably have something wrapped around it. This leaves you with a free arm and two legs. Offering the dog your arm will keep him from grabbing onto your leg and dragging you to the ground or from leaping for your throat.
If an arm bite does occur, try to hold the arm so that the bite will clamp down on the sides of the forearm or wrist. Teeth puncturing the soft, flat flesh could damage arteries inside the forearm or wrist. Remember to keep your hand balled into a fist to protect your fingers.

Work to avoid getting knocked onto the ground. Keep your balance.

Use your stick to block the attack if you can. If not, shove the stick down the dog’s throat. If he has your arm, he may release his hold at this point.

If you don’t have a stick, consider shoving your arm down the dog’s throat. Shoving your arm down the dog’s throat can cut off his oxygen or make him gag. Pulling your arm away, rather than shoving your arm forward, will increase your injuries.

If the dog has your arm, attack his vulnerable places: use your thumb to gouge out an eye or deliver a sharp blow to the throat. In this position, you can choke the dog until he passes out by feeding him one arm and placing the other behind his head and pulling upward until the neck snaps. Another method is to grab one of the dog’s hind legs and jerk it upward. This will put the dog on its back – a submissive stance. Use the leg as a lever to keep the dog on his back and drag it to a safer place for you. Be careful with this, though, as you don’t want to end up on the ground.

If you get knocked to the ground, try to remain calm and as motionless as possible, unless the attack continues. If the attack continues, curl into a ball and roll onto your stomach, arms over ears, knees protecting your throat. Use your hands to protect the back of your neck by clasping your hands behind your neck. This is a passive position and may end the attack.

Make a mental note of the dog’s size, breed, sex and color.

Wash the wound with warm, soapy water, wrap in a clean cloth, applying gentle pressure to stop the bleeding. Seek medical attention and follow wound care procedures.

Report the attack to authorities and warn neighbors, especially those which are elderly or have small children.

I’m a dog owner. I love my dog, and she is well-trained. I take good care of her, and I respect her dog-ness. A dog left to its own devices will do what dogs were designed to do. When we respect the design and intent of these animals, we can take appropriate measures to keep our families safe.


Preparing Yourself for Dog Encounters from Hector Hernandez on Vimeo.


Tuesday, August 11, 2009


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Genesis 1:29
And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.

Healthy plants and animals have been designed to reproduce after their own kind. As gardening practices developed, seeds were saved from the previous season for planting the following season. Farmers would select seeds from the plants that fared the best in their environment.

In recent history, major US corporations have been formed which retail seeds to farmers. This has been a beneficial relationship as it saved the farmer labor hours and allowed him to try new varieties of crops. The corporations were able to devote their resources exclusively to seed collection, storage and retail.

Scientific developments have made it possible to alter seeds in order to increase their profitability. Some of these newer methods have had dire consequences for farmers, food quality, and the consuming public. In the name of protecting standards, this new technology could create a world-wide dependency on seed corporations. This would be accomplished by retailing seeds that have been engineered to produce for one season and then yield seeds that are either sterile or very unpredictable in their ability to reproduce.

Three popular methods currently used to accomplish this include hybrid plants, genetically modified (GM) seeds and Terminator Technology.

Hybrid plants can produce food and seeds, but their seeds don't produce after their own kind because the plants are a cross of two different varieties. Genetically modified (GM) seeds are designed to produce plants resistant to chemical poisons and sprays. This enables farmers to use more chemicals during the growing season which has a damaging effect on the soil and the microbial and micronutrient content available to the plants. Terminator Technology is a type of genetic modification that insures a seed will only produce plants for one season, rendering subsequent seeds sterile.

Individuals can act to help insure that a fertile source of seeds remain available to the general public by starting their own seed banks. You don’t have to be a farmer to harvest and store seeds for future use. When purchasing seeds, look for catalogs that state they do not retail GM seeds. Purchase only heirloom seeds, as these are unaltered. Look for fruits, vegetables, grains and various herbs that you would use for seasoning, spice and/or medicinal purposes.

Seeds harvested from flowers, fruits, vegetables and herbs can be placed onto waxed or parchment paper to air dry at room temperature. Use a marker to label the paper, so you won't forget the date and the variety. When dry, move the seeds to a labeled paper envelope. This can be kept in a glass jar in your refrigerator for long term storage. If you have dark, cool, dry area, seeds are generally known to store well in such an environment. For grass and grain seeds that would be broadcast over a large area, you may want to make some seed balls for convenience in storage and later planting.

But why store seeds if you don’t plan to grow them?

Currently, there is a bill before Congress (H.R. 875) that threatens to so regulate sources of food that it has the potential to put a stop to roadside stands, backyard gardens and organic farming practices. Whether this will become law and how it will be enforced remains to be seen. Yet, it may be wise to begin saving seeds now, while the practice is still unregulated.

Consider harvesting and storing seeds that you may not be interested in growing. Do your research and label the seeds with both their botanical and common names. There are internet sites devoted to trading seeds. You may be able to get the seeds you want for free by trading your unwanted surplus.

Without heirloom seed companies, these seeds could cease to exist. In the current economic and political climate, this is a possibility. Individuals that enjoy the freedom of growing their own foods -- or even purchasing foods grown without chemicals -- would do well to take the time to secure their source of heirloom seeds.

No Greater Joy Magazine is a bi-monthly publication that featuring articles on simple living and strengthening family ties. Visit Mike and Debi Pearls’ web site at www.NoGreaterJoy.org to get your free subscription today.

How to Harvest & Dry Seeds -- powered by eHow.com

Friday, July 24, 2009


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The number one weather-related killer in the United States each year is flooding. On average, 140 deaths are caused annually due to flood conditions. Of that number, three quarters die in vehicles.

The best way to survive a flood is to understand that nature is not the enemy. Flooding occurs often enough to give us lots of information on how best to deal with these conditions.

The primary type of flooding is river flooding. This can occur even if there has been no rainfall in your immediate area. A heavy rain event far upstream can cause river levels to rise even though you haven’t seen storm clouds. These conditions can have a cumulative effect over days or weeks. It is important to know the topography of the land around you and whether or not you are at risk for flooding.

Some precautions that you can take include keeping pets restrained or on a leash and indoors. Secure livestock on high ground. Listen to your local weather station. When a flood warning is issued – ESPECIALLY a flash flood warning, understand that there isn’t much time to move. You may only have seconds to escape. Remember that the water will seek low lying areas. Streets, streams and creeks will fill rapidly. Rather than attempting to outrun the waters, seek higher ground. Never attempt to outdrive a flash flood. Flash floods move faster than a car could travel.

If there IS time to prepare, then move your furnishings and valuables to an upper level. Stock up on clean water, filling various containers, including bathtubs. Implement your family disaster plan.

NEVER DRIVE in flood waters. Water covering the road could be covering hidden dangers. Just because you are familiar with the ground surface, doesn’t mean it is safe. The lay of the land may well have been changed by the swirling water. The waters may contain runoff toxic chemicals, downed power lines or other debris. Stop, turn around and go another way.

Avoid walking in floodwaters. The currents in floodwaters are strong. As little as 6 inches of water can sweep an adult or a child off their feet and carry them away. Listen to public health warnings regarding boiling water advisories. Take time to become aware of the entry points of your home. Neighbor’s pets or other wildlife such as snakes or rats may try to take refuge in your house.

If you return home after a flood, examine the exterior of your home, checking for damage and places where critters may have entered. If the foundation appears damaged, hire a professional to inspect the residence to see if it’s safe to enter. Wear protective clothing – dust mask, rubber gloves, long pants, boots, and long-sleeved shirts – as you clean your property. Floods cause a lot of mud, silt and other debris to enter your home. Be prepared to change garments as they become soiled. The soil contains bacteria that could make you ill.

Earlier this year, the Cane Creek community in Tennessee experienced localized flooding. The July-August 2009 issue of No Greater Joy Magazine includes two personal accounts of the event. Impressive photos are included along with an article by bestselling author Debi Pearl entitled: "The Biggest Cane Creek Flood on Record.” Her son, Gabriel Pearl wrote of his adventures in the article entitled: “Cane Creek Flood.” You can read both articles free online or sign up for a free subscription to No Greater Joy Magazine and have it delivered to your home.
read more “FLOOD SAFETY”

Thursday, July 16, 2009


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Norman’s Ranch and Sportswear Store can be found in a little town called Havre, Montana. Norman’s is a thriving enterprise, but that’s not all there is to see in Havre. Beyond the rail museum and other highlights you will find ‘Beneath the Streets.’ Today, this is a novel stop on a tour, but at one time it was a bustling business zone. One hundred years ago, cowboys and ranch workers would find their way here to be relieved of their pay by gambling, drinking, visiting the opium den and keeping company with enterprising females.

Havre might have been one of the early pioneers of below-ground businesses but it wasn’t the last town to try it. Craighead Caverns is part of a massive system of caves in a place called Sweetwater, Tennessee. About 70 years ago, Fort Oglethorpe utilized horses. The manure from those horses was used as fertilizer for a mushroom farm begun in a large cavern. Those mushroom beds were located near a dance floor that became a nightclub called the Cavern Tavern.

Caves aren’t normally sought after as permanent shelter, but it’s not really a bizarre idea. This has been tried previously. The real sticking point is to try and conceive of how entire groups of people could be housed AND find a viable source of clean food, air and water within a cave for great lengths of time.

When studied, however, this may not be such a strange idea.

About 40 years ago, Soviet scientists were testing several types of algae to determine their nutrient content. Techniques perfected during that research are being used today to create nutritional supplements. Because it is necessary to secure a large climate-controlled growing environment, some manufacturers are utilizing caves. Systems are being marketed today which grow fish and vegetables using limited resources. This is accomplished by using water filtered from the fish container to feed nutrients to the plants which are grown in trays with peat moss and pea gravel. Along with automated feeding, both the fish and the plants receive artificial sunlight via solar powered growing lights. As you may have already surmised, it is possible to utilize this technology to create a livable environment inside a cave.

However, the idea that both humans and animals could live for extended periods inside of a cave without returning to the surface for supplies is not the only surprising revelation.

Rural Tennessee has produced a writer that has used these pieces of information to create a suspense-filled story in her newest book, The Vision. Near a labyrinth of caves reside Debi Pearl and her husband, Mike. Together, they serve as administrators of No Greater Joy Ministries. ~ There, they also oversee No Greater Joy Ministries. While Debi Pearl is well known for her writing, this is her first work of fiction. Debi’s newest work, The Vision is not unlike the caves of Tennessee; taking the reader around surprising twists and turns that raise questions about whether these things might actually occur.

The first in a series, The Vision delivers on its promise to both entertain and inform. Get your copy of The Vision by Debi Pearl today.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009


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Survival skill training can be one way to help your child avoid becoming a victim. The ability to find food and shelter until rescued will shield a child from many dangers. One of the most important ways a parent can protect children from abusers is to work to provide a safe, secure home environment where a child knows he is loved and wanted.

Criminals know that runaways are easy prey; that’s why they target them. The Vision is a new book by Debi Pearl that touches on the reality of the victimization of runaways in this country.

Rates of runaways soar as more and more families are disintegrating. Over two and a half million children run away from home each year according to the United States Department of Justice. A large number of runaways are lured into illegal solicitation. A majority of these children are indentured into service by abusers. Many of these go unnoticed because their disappearance is never reported to authorities by their malfunctioning family.

Federal agents in a nationwide sweep broke up more than 12 child prostitution rings in October 2008 that used children as young as 13 up to age 17. Metropolitan areas were not the only places these businesses thrived. Many of these operations are able to thrive in areas that are suburban or rural.

Criminal hunters study the mental and emotional makeup of their targets. They realize that these children are in search of a secure and safe place. Whatever the child lacked at home – food, clothing, money, attention, shelter – all of that is promised by the abuser. The control of the children is additionally secured by physical force and the threat of violence.

The response of local law enforcement is often to give a criminal record to these children. While a child must be 17 in most states in order to qualify as a consenting adult, there is no age limit on how young a child must be to escape prostitution charges. While the law states that an underage child cannot consentually agree to intercourse, those same laws can be used to level criminal charges against a child engaged in that activity.

Hundreds Nabbed in Prostitution Bust
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These youngsters lack family members that are willing to take them in, or rather, no family with whom they would want to live. It is not common to find safe houses with counseling services, medical treatment, and crisis management. Although released from jail or juvenile services, these children often have no other option but to return to the same bondage they escaped.

The Vision contains a story of several people that encounter a hopeless, young runaway. Endurance, faith and patience are put to the test as an angry, untrusting soul is at stake. This is just one of the strands that is woven into the tapestry of The Vision. Find out what happens! Don’t wait to purchase your copy of The Vision by Debi Pearl.

Kay is . . .

a perpetual student of things I find interesting and (I hope) helpful to others. Feel free to use and apply all information with a healthy dose of common sense. :-)

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