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Review: eFoods Global Tortilla Soup

February 8, 2011

Meal #2 from eFoods Global is another two big thumbs up from me. The whole family ate through this with gusto – I actually didn’t have quite as many leftovers this time because my husband went back for a huge bowl of seconds! I added hamburger to the mix and garnished with cheese. You could also add some broken tortilla chip garnish and sour cream as well I’m sure. There was enough the next day for the two girls and I to eat for lunch.

The soup was wonderfully flavorful but not too spicy. If you’re a fan of spicy (I’m not, but hubby is and we both liked it – amazing!), I’m sure you could add in some seasonings to taste.

I’m excited to try more from this company – I’m thinking about buying our favorites in bulk (the prices are then cheaper than most “box” meals but much healthier!) and then storing half and eating half. This way I can build our food reserves out of our regular budget and have a pantry full of easy, organic meals for everyday.

The website description states “This festive soup is quick to make, flavorful, and filling! Serve with tortilla chips and warm Corn Bread Muffins. Garnish with Monterey Jack cheese, fresh tomatoes, and avocado.”

Picky Husband Rating System: Unsolicited “wow this is great!” and request to make it again often.

Survival gear in unexpected places

February 3, 2011

I went in to Harbor Freight the other day to buy some more of their awesome scissors, and had some time to kill. As I wandered through the aisles I started noticing that they also have some great deals on other items that might be valuable in your emergency kit.

Some of the items I see in most recommendations for emergency kits are LED flashlights (the batteries last for a loooooong time), fire starters and knives. In particular, I had been wanting to get some different knives and carry one at all times – earlier this year I was involved in a life or death situation that resulted in a death that might possibly had been prevented with quicker access to a knife, so now I’ve been noticing in a variety of situations how different types of knives could be valuable.

They also have a sweet solar lantern and hand crank lantern at what seem to be decent prices, I’m going to pick up some of those as well.

I was able to get the following items:

  • Magnesium fire starters – I’ve seen these for $20 at gun shows, these were just 2.49 so I stocked up!
  • Hunting/Survival knife for 9.99
  • LED flashlights on clearance for .67 cents (I was stoked about this – the floor clerk looked at me funny when bought all 6 they had left).
  • Little 2 pack LED flashlights, great for bedside and cars for 3.99
  • Little folding knife for 3.99 (this is what I think I’ll carry with me just to always be prepared)

So this really isn’t an advertisement for Harbor Freight – although it is a great store! This is more about keeping your eyes open in atypical places, because you never know when you’ll find 67 cent flashlights!

Oh, and don’t forget to check out those awesome scissors.

Review: eFoods Global Cheesy Chicken Rice

January 28, 2011

Mmmmmm…cheesy goodness. This was the first eFoods product I tried, and I was concerned that it would not live up to its serving size when I opened the package. However, it was so filling that it did indeed get the four of us a dinner and lunch. It smelled great, looked fresh and tasted delicious. The instructions were easy – just add water and bring to a boil. I also added in some leftover chicken breast pieces I had in the fridge as suggested on the package.

It would be simple to add a few different types of vegetables to add some variety to this meal. I would also think that you could get away with adding other types of meat with it – the chicken flavor is more like a broth type of flavor (not super strong) so fish or beef would likely also work.

The website’s description says, “Features moist, tender chicken-flavored tidbits covered with melted cheddar cheese nestled in a blend of creamy rice and vegetables. An added chicken breast or two can take this charmer to a whole new level of culinary delight.”

As a note: for my testing process as I work on building our family’s food reserves, I do not tell my colossally picky husband where the food came from so as to get unbiased commentary. Seriously, I hide healthy things like pureed vegetables and don’t tell him – once he caught me and suddenly disliked a food he always liked. I told him I was just testing it out, did it again the next time without getting caught and he loved the dish again. You see what I’m working with here…however annoying it can be at times,  his feedback is very valuable when the proper controls are made in the experiment. 🙂

Picky Husband Rating System: Unsolicited praise and request to make it again often.

Top ten reasons women should CrossFit

January 23, 2011

10. Because weak and feminine are not the same
9. Because you fear no challenge
8. Because you should train like an athlete not a hamster
7. Because you refuse to be a damsel in distress
6. Because you don’t need machines…You are the machine
5. Because you have yet to realize your full physical potential
4. Because aerobics is sooooo 1980’s
3. Because that which does not kill you will only make you stronger
2. Because you’re willing to sweat and not just glisten
1. Because there is nothing cooler than a strong woman!!

Why it is important to build up your personal food reserves?

January 21, 2011

Building your food reserves for your family is one of the most prudent actions you can take. No one knows what can or will affect the functioning of society or food distribution. With food reserves, you eliminate the worry. Each week, the attention of the nation is focusing more intensely on families storing quantities of emergency food and water in their homes. Why? Potential disruptions in the food supply can be caused by a number of factors such as unemployment, economic downturn, erratic weather, droughts, earthquakes, hurricanes, floods, contamination of food supplies, and transportation disruptions.

Ok, so you’re ready to start building your reserves…now how much should you have, where should you get it, and where should you keep it?

What should I get?
There are a lot of different options out there. We settled on the delicious, nutritionally -balanced, easy-to-prepare gourmet foods from eFoods. They have a shelf life of 15 years, and are so great that if you don’t use them for survival, they make great everyday meals! As low as 90 cents per serving, these are so easy to make, and all organic that I’m halfway tempted to just use these for regular meals on a regular basis. Tonight is Cheesy Chicken Rice Casserole – and the expiration date on the back is Nov 15, 2025. If you want to know more details about this food, visit the Food Reserves page.

Try 6 meals free!
So what’s even cooler? If you want to check these out for yourself, you can try 6 meals for free! Just go to proverbs3121.myefoods.com. Feel free to watch the video, or go straight to getting your 6 free meals.

MRE (Meals Ready to Eat) are also another easy, nutritionally balanced food source. You can find them on eBay, Amazon or at your local military surplus store (sometimes – they often sell out quickly). I’ve tried both these and eFoods – the MREs aren’t bad, but I prefer the eFoods. The prices are about comparable if you shop around for the MREs, however, I also feel the eFoods are healthier. However, if you find something tasty you like in whatever MRE or brand, don’t hesitate to mix and match! If you have time to plan ahead, why not make sure you have lots of tasty food you actually like? 🙂

How much of a reserve should you have?
This is going to depend on your reasons for having an emergency food supply. Do you just want about a week’s worth to be ready in case of a natural disaster (right now in my area there’s a suburb that’s been trapped due to a flooding river with no power and no way out other than hiking on foot a 5 mile, narrow trail)? Or are you concerned about a longer food shortage or economic emergency? With the current state of world affairs, and predictions of coming food shortages, many experts are now recommending 6 months.

The eFoods Variety Pack is enough for 1 person for 1 week. So you would need 4 of these (or one Serve, Save and Share Pack) for a family of 4 for 1 week (of course, since our children are small and very light eaters, I figure that we could make them last a little longer). So obviously, a 6 month supply of food can be quite an investment – not to mention finding a space for storage! The eFoods meals are so delicious and inexpensive, that you could consider using some of your monthly food budget to buy them, then go ahead and eat some while saving the rest as a way to start stocking up on a reserve.  Just do as much as you can, as often as you can. Better to have something than nothing, but prayerfully consider how much your family needs and what your goals are.

What is the best temperature for storage?
As with all food, the optimum storage conditions are cool and dry (70 degrees Fahrenheit or lower). Prolonged heat decreases the nutritional value. We advise against storing the food in a garage or attic where summertime temperatures can exceed 100 degrees. Cold or freezing temperatures are of no concern.

Maybe you have an unused closet, or that weird little room under the stairs. Look up – is there room to put boxes on top of some cabinets or install some shelves high up? Depending on your climate, your attic or garage may be just fine.

10 Important Survival Downloads

January 20, 2011

One of my major liabilities is that both I and my husband are completely children of the modern age. Give us a computer, a network to set up, a entertainment system to hook up and we’re in our element. In the face of a major disaster – we’re pretty much in major trouble. We’re working on learning some “old-fashioned” skills (more about that in a later post). Even if we were totally competent survivalist, you never know what situations may arise in the future.

Enter the wonderful folks over at ModernSurvivalOnline.com and their lovely (and free!) Survival Database Downloads. Here are the top ten I’m downloading and then printing out, placing in waterproof storage, and keeping safe.  In particular, I thought the dentistry manual was very wise – your teeth are vital to your longevity, and can completely consume you with pain if not treated. I also really, really hope I never need the war surgery information – which probably means it’s especially important to have!

The Household Cyclopedia is also a great way to reclaim lost skills – I’m sure that at my current proficiency level, there would be a lot of trial and error, but I’m thankful previous generations thought it prudent to record these sorts of instructions!

  1. FM 4-25-11 First Aid (2002)
  2. Guide to Canning
  3. Rangers Handboook
  4. Where There is No Dentist
  5. NATO Emergency War Surgery
  6. A Guide to Raised Bed Gardening
  7. FM 3-06 Combined Arms Operations in Urban Terrain
  8. 1881 Household Cyclopedia
  9. FM 21-76-1 Survival-Evasion-Recovery
  10. U.S. Army Field Manual 3-05.70