challenge


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By Kellene Bishop

Are you ready folks? The most recent food challenge is going to seem like a cakewalk to some of you compared to this one. But it’s an important trial run in which your whole family should participate in. It’s called the Preparedness Pro Commerce Independence Challenge.

Currency photo c/o AOL

Currency photo c/o AOL

Preparedness Pro Double Dog Dares You to go an entire 14 days without participating in any spending of currency…any, nada, zip, zero, etc. We dare you to be independent of all commerce interactions for a full 14 days. That’s in a row, folks, in a row. J This means that you won’t pay any bill, go out to eat, go to a movie, buy gas or anything for a full two weeks. Being independent from commerce as you know it will truly hone your preparedness skills. Your eyes will be opened to just how reliant you are on commerce exchange, electricity, conveniences, etc. My husband and I just did a Commerce Independence Challenge at the end of last year. Yes, it was a true challenge for us. But it gave us a greater anticipation and awareness of how things may be in the event of a financial or other type of economic collapse. Awareness always brings about more preparedness, right?

Groceries c/o kentohio.net

Groceries c/o kentohio.net

Now, here’s something I’m going to urge you to do before you accept this Challenge. Go ahead and prepare for it a few days in advance in every way that you can think of. Pay the babysitter now. Stock up on some gasoline for 2 weeks now. Get two weeks worth of groceries now—don’t forget the comfort foods. I dare say that this Commerce Independence Challenge will still be an eye opener for you as you will undoubtedly have something that you haven’t thought of crop up and throw you a curve ball. When it does, just deal with it. Don’t buy the school supplies, the groceries, the shirt, the hair spray or the new shovel for 14 days. You can trade goods for goods and services, but during the Commerce Independence Challenge don’t exchange any currency for goods or services for 14 days.

I’m specifically making this challenge at this time of year. It won’t be convenient. There’s Halloween parties and costumes that you’ll need to think about ahead of time. But I’m 100% convinced that this will be a valuable experience. 

I know that some of our challenge takers on our last challenge entered into it without letting the rest of the family know. (Sly little devils) But I encourage you to let the whole family in on it. Tell your friends about it. If they look at you weird, ask them if they could even go ONE DAY without being a part of commerce. How about 3 days? Worst case scenario, if this just sounds like “too much” for you, then challenge yourself for a smaller period of time. Regardless though, do take at least a portion of the Commerce Independence Challenge. I’m quite certain that you won’t regret it.

Here's your reason to say no to your kids! Photo c/o geekgirlfriends.com

Here's your reason to say no to your kids! Photo c/o geekgirlfriends.com

Come on. Don’t wimp out on me. You’ll still have the safety and comfort of your home, electricity, the microwave, etc. It’s not like I’m challenging you to live without plumbing for two weeks. You’ll still have the television or radio or board games to keep you entertained. And besides, you’ve been meaning to get around to organizing your food storage anyway. The walking or bike riding will do you some good too, right? And wouldn’t it be great if you could put a carte blanche “no” on spending for your kids everyday desires for a whole two weeks? Perhaps it will be liberating? It’s not called the Commerce INDEPENDENCE Challenge for nothing.

The contest begins today and goes through the 15th of November. You can pick whichever 14 days you want to accept the Challenge. By all means, please give the rest of our readers a peak into what you’re doing and how you’re dealing with it. There are no losers in the Commerce Independence Challenge. I’m quite positive that anyone who participates will indeed be a winner. The point is to push all of you to learn, by firsthand experience, what you’re really ready for. And as always, any blog comment entry you make through the 15th will be eligible for our regular prize drawings that we’re holding every two weeks.

This is going to be very interesting, isn’t it?

Copyright 2009 Preparedness Pro & Kellene Bishop.  All rights reserved.  You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Preparedness Pro & Kellene Bishop.

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This blog has moved. Please visit us at www.preparednesspro.com.

By Kellene Bishop

and-the-winners-are-prizesToday we held the drawing for the Preparedness Pro Food Challenge. Thanks to everyone who participated in the blog comments. Kudos to those who actually participated in the challenge as well!

There are a total of 12 prizes. We simply entered your name in the drawing for each time you made a comment on the Preparedness Pro Food Challenge topic. Some of you were “very” lucky as your name kept getting drawn. However, in fairness to everyone else, we only permitted one prize per person. (Otherwise Jackie and Shoshanna would have cleaned up :))

Prize #1: iPee Portable Restroom—Winner: Barbara! Retail Value $3.35
We tested this. It works REALLY well. I’m thinking I want a bunch more in my preparedness supplies!

and-the-winners-barbara

Prize #2: Volcano Rock Fire Starter—Winner: Gabrielle Retail value: $3.49
Create a fire under just about any circumstances, in a jiffy!

and-the-winners-gabrielle

Prize #3: Morning Moo’s Dry Milk Alternative-Orange Cream Flavor—Winner: Becka! Retail Value $5.50.
This tastes like a Dreamsicle.  It’s one of my favorites and kids will love it as well.

and-the-winners-becka

Prize #4: Bach Rescue Remedy Spray—Winner: Stacy! Retail Value: $6.50
A little stress relief now or during a chaotic time is just what the doctor ordered. Bach homeopathic products are some of my very favorite. In fact, you can even get a $3 off coupon here: http://coupons.mambosprouts.com/online_coupons/index?page=1

and-the-winners-stacy

Prize # 5: 1 pound of red cheese wax—Winner: Debbie! Retail Value: $6.50
This is the kind that I use, so enjoy it! Remember, it’s reusable as well, so when you take it off of a cheese, just wash it like you would dishes, and then reuse.

and-the-winners-debbie

Prize #6: Spiff-E-Whip (1 lb. 4 oz.)—Winner: Believer! Retail Value $6.79
Ok. I have to admit this is the 2nd Best prize in my opinion. I’m totally addicted to Spiff-E-Whip! It’s great as a mousse, frosting, glaze, pudding, pie filling, etc. So easy to use. Just add water and whip it up!

and-the-winners-believer

Prize #7: Ultra Maxigel (1 lb.) —Winner: Shoshana! Retail Value: $7.50
This is invaluable to have. I make syrups and jams with this. I also use this as a substitute for eggs, cornstarch, and any other thickening agent. This is good to use in hot or cold dishes.

and-the-winners-shoshana

Prize #8: Pantry Cooking by Laura Robins—Winner: Diana Smith! Retail Value: $10
Lots of great recipe ideas that you can use directly from your pantry.  I’ve tested several of these recipes with thumbs up approval!

and-the-winners-diana-smith

Prize #9: Alas, Babylon by Pat Frank—Winner: Angela! Retail Value: $12.95
One of my all-time favorite “preparedness” novels. Written by a man who definitely had the inside track to what was really going on in the international circles, this is truly an eye opener.

and-the-winners-angela

Prize #10: Passport to Survival, by Esther Dickey (Collectors Item)—Winner: Todd! Retail Value: $15
This book is a classic! It shows you how you can survive deliciously on a mere 4 food storage items—wheat, powdered milk, honey and salt. The author was definitely ahead of her time when she wrote this one. I had to really search to find a quality copy to award in this contest!

and-the-winners-todd

Prize #11: Cortaid Poison Ivy Care Treatment Kit—Winner: Jackie! Retail Value: $35
I couldn’t believe how often this particular kit comes in handy! It binds to the toxins and allows them to be washed away, and then it creates a barrier for the medicine so that it can stay on the skin. When you’re out of your element, this is a keeper!

and-the-winners-jackie

Prize #12: Private 30-minute Telephone Consultation with Preparedness Pro—Winner: Wendy Usually Wanders! Retail Value $50
Obviously, this is the BEST prize of all. Prepare to fill out a questionnaire so that I can really help you on this call!!!

and-the-winners-wendy-usually-wanders

Congratulations to all of the winners! Please e-mail us at sarah at preparednesspro dot com to give us your mailing address so that we can get these out to you!

Copyright 2009 Preparedness Pro & Kellene Bishop.  All rights reserved.  You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Preparedness Pro & Kellene Bishop.

Subscribe to Preparedness Pro today and never miss a thing!

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The Preparedness Pro Food Challenge ends today and we will be a doing the drawing this week. 

Stay tuned… you may be one of 12 winners! 

food-challenge

food-challenge

This blog has moved. Please visit us at www.preparednesspro.com.

Don’t forget, folks, that you still have one more week to participate in the Preparedness Pro Food Challenge! The Preparedness Pro Food Challenge goes through the entire month of August and constitutes going an entire two weeks without going to the grocery store for any food or household supplies.

Even if you haven’t started yet, or this is the first you’ve heard of the Preparedness Pro Food Challenge, I would challenge you to jump in with both feet and see how you do without any preplanning or hitting the grocery store to “stock up” on the way home.  As you accept and experience this challenge, visit the original Preparedness Pro Food Challenge blog and document your experiences. Each comment will count as an entry to win AMAZING emergency preparedness prizes! There is no limit to the amount of comments you can leave. We have 12 gifts that will go to randomly drawn winners on September 1st.

ALSO, here are 3 easy ways to enter the contest and increase your chances of winning great prizes! Become a fan of Preparedness Pro on FacebookFollow @preparednesspro on Twitter or subscribe to Preparedness Pro — these will each count as an extra entry! Does it get any easier than that?!

Leave your comments on the original Preparendess Pro Food Challenge blog HERE!

Copyright 2009 Preparedness Pro & Kellene Bishop.  All rights reserved.  You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Preparedness Pro & Kellene Bishop.

Subscribe to Preparedness Pro today and never miss a thing!

This blog has moved. Please visit us at www.preparednesspro.com.

By Kellene Bishop

I'm a Daring Cook!

I'm a Daring Cook!

My confession is not that I’m a good cook. The confession is that I’m a bit daring in my cooking, in that I’m not afraid to try new things and new recipes. I can usually read through a recipe and determine whether or not it will be good, and even what to add or subtract from it prior to making it. In the past I’ve even ventured to cook things on the fly, even when it was for a large gathering. I started this somewhat dangerous habit on the menu of a girlfriend’s wedding reception over 12 years ago. I still remember how amazingly well the Swiss cheese fondue turned out by my combining a few recipes. All was well. The food was great. I felt I could trust my culinary instincts and I’ve done so ever since. Until yesterday…

This is where the confession comes in. Yesterday I taught a solar oven cooking class for a kitchen store. To be honest, I was kind of bored with the same old recipes I’d been using. I had recently received a new cookbook in the mail from Amazon that was supposed to be specifically for solar oven cooking. It was the only book I saw on Amazon dedicated specifically to solar oven cooking recipes. I saw a couple things they did a bit differently than I would, but I figured that the recipes were safe. To my horror, I was soooo wrong. And what’s worse is that I used these sweet ladies in the class as guinea pigs! The bread I made was tender, thanks to the solar oven, but just downright uneventful, and perhaps even painful to eat as a result. The enchilada recipe could not have been more bland. While I usually play my group recipes down on the less-spicy side of things in order to not offend a sensitive palate, I have to say that the taste of this recipe was just plain torture. Boy howdy, was I embarrassed!

solar-powered-ovenI decided that I didn’t like getting my butt kicked by some amateurish cook/author. So, considering I have another solar oven class to teach tonight, I decided to try the recipes again, this time letting my instincts kick in and make them worthy of the Preparedness Pro name. I’m happy to say that I managed to do that today. In light of the fact that some of you are taking the Preparedness Pro food challenge this month and some are also taking the Solar Oven Challenge of cooking for 2 days in their solar oven alone, I decided to share my redeemed recipes with you. Not only do I hope you enjoy them, but at least this time I can be assured that you won’t hate them. 🙂 Enjoy! Oh, and for those of you who attended the class yesterday, I’m SO sorry that the food was less than stellar. If you come tonight at Macey’s in Orem, at 7 p.m., I’m sure I’ll make it up to you. 🙂

Our Ms. Divine Chicken Enchilada Recipe - photo c/o Preparedness Pro

Our Ms. Divine Chicken Enchilada Recipe - photo c/o Preparedness Pro

Divine Ms. Chicken Casserole

2 T. butter

¼ C. white flour

1 ½ C. chicken broth

½ C. plain yogurt

1 (3 oz.) block of cream cheese, cut into about 5 pieces

1 t. of cumin

1 t. black pepper

½ t. garlic powder

1 C. of green enchilada sauce

1 small can of diced green chilies—heat of chilies is dependent on your taste buds

8 (6-inch) corn tortillas, cut into 1 inch strips

3 C. of cooked and shredded chicken

1 small can of sliced olives

1 ½ C. of grated Monterey Jack cheese

2 scallions, thinly sliced, greens only

Slices of fresh avocado for garnish

Melt the butter on the stove over medium heat. Add the flour, stirring constantly until bubbly. Add the broth and increase heat to high. Add the cream cheese, cumin, pepper, yogurt. Stir with a whisk until hot, but not boiling. Add the enchilada sauce and green chilies, continuing to whisk.

Cover the bottom of a 9×13 baking pan or small round Graniteware pan with about a third of the sauce. Sprinkle half of the tortilla strips over the sauce, then layer with the chicken, olives, and all but ½ C of the cheese. Then add another third of the sauce. Top with the remaining tortilla strips, sauce, and then cheese.

Cover with the pan lid or a dark, moist towel and bake at about 300 to 350 F degrees for 1 to 2 hours in the solar oven, until the cheese has melted. Serve with sprinkled scallions and sliced avocado. Yum! Yields 6 servings.

Easy Onion Dill Cheese Bread - photo c/o Preparedness Pro

Easy Onion Dill Cheese Bread - photo c/o Preparedness Pro

Easy Onion Dill Cheese Bread

1 large onion, finely diced

3 C. Bisquick

1 egg

1 ¼ C. buttermilk

1 T. dried dill

2 C. shredded cheddar cheese

Scant dash of salt

In a large bowl, beat the egg and buttermilk until well blended. Stir in the baking mix and mix until completely moistened. Stir in the dill, onions, and 2/3  of the cheese.

Lightly oil a dark 9x5x3 inch loaf pan. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle with the remaining cheese.

Cover and cook in the solar oven (about 300 degrees) about 1 hour, until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.

(Note: This is a dense bread, not light and fluffy. It also makes for great muffins. Just cook a little bit less time.)

Chocolate Chocolate Molten Chocolate Cake

Since we have previously published the delectable Chocolate Chocolate Molten Chocolate Cake, click here for the recipe!

Chocolate Chocolate Molten Chocolate Cake - photo c/o Preparedness Pro

Chocolate Chocolate Molten Chocolate Cake - photo c/o Preparedness Pro

Copyright 2009 Preparedness Pro & Kellene Bishop.  All rights reserved.  You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Preparedness Pro & Kellene Bishop.

Subscribe to Preparedness Pro today and never miss a thing!

This blog has moved. Please visit us at www.preparednesspro.com.

Today I happened upon an individual who, as of July 1, has commited to cook with her solar oven each sunny day for an entire year.  The Solar Oven Chef, as she calls herself, posts images of meals she’s prepared each day in her solar oven.  She has prepared everything from ribs to bread to pizza and meatloaf — excellent variety!  By the end of the Solar Oven Chef’s one year experiment, preparing meals in her solar oven will be second nature. 

solar-oven-chef-cakesolar-oven-chef-pizzasolar-oven-roasted-chicken-vegetables

As we’ve discussed in previous blogs, cooking with a solar oven is a great way to prepare meals, not only in an emergency, but everyday — particularly during the summer when the kitchen is hot enough to begin with. 

solar-powered-ovenIf you follow Preparedness Pro regularly, you know I’m all about using what you store for an emergency in order to be familiar with how to use your supplies and so your family is accustomed to it.  If you intend to use a solar oven in an emergency, I’d recommend learning to prepare meals in one.  Do you have a solar oven?  Have you used it yet?  Are you familiar with adjusting your favorite recipes’ cook times in a solar oven? 

We have recently begun issuing challenges to our readers.  Here is the solar oven challenge.  Would you be willing to prepare your meals in a solar oven for two days?  You could even try the solar oven challenge this weekend.  This is an excellent exercise to practice how you may prepare your meals in an emergency and be better prepared when the time inevitably comes. 

Are you willing to step up to the plate and take the solar oven challenge? 

Copyright 2009 Preparedness Pro & Kellene Bishop.  All rights reserved.  You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Preparedness Pro & Kellene Bishop.

Subscribe to Preparedness Pro today and never miss a thing!