Saturday, July 26, 2008

Preparedness Principles: The Complete Personal Preparedness Resource Guide for Any Emergency Situation, by Barbara Salsbury

I have several books on emergency preparedness in my personal library (remember Y2K?). But I think I'll be able to replace most of them with Preparedness Principles by Barbara Salsbury. As the subtitle says, it is a complete personal preparedness resource guide.

Lately, it seems natural disasters are occurring more frequently. I remember a time when any disaster would dominate newscasts. Now floods, tornadoes, and wildfires, all in different areas, have to share airtime. Add to that high fuel prices and the high food prices caused by high fuel prices, and things are getting scary. All the hoopla about global warming (which, by the way, was invented by Al Gore), just raises the stress level. But that's a subject to save for another blog.

Even in my little neck of the woods, where hurricanes are something you see on the television and the mountainous terrain is not conducive to tornadoes, we have our own brand of emergencies. The power goes out on a regular basis, sometimes associated with bad weather, sometimes not. Severe winter weather is so common the local school board just plans a week or two of snow days into the yearly schedule.

Preparedness Principles is a great resource book to help you get ready for anything. It covers every aspect of emergency, short-term, and long-term preparedness. There's even a section on budgeting and getting out of debt. Wondering what to put in your emergency evacuation kit and what to keep it it? Trying to figure out what to store, where to put it, and what to do with it once you have it? Wishing you could grow a garden, but you have nowhere to put it? It's all in one book. Preparedness Principles covers everything from how to remove algae from water storage containers to what to do in case of terrorist attacks.

Salsbury imparts the wisdom she has gained from experience, both from living through more than her share of disasters and from conducting extensive experiments. (Check out the weevil vs. bay leaf experiment, page 43.) She also includes the first-hand accounts of disaster preparedness and survival from friends, relatives, and students of her classes and workshops. Throughout the book she sprinkles a liberal dose of humor, and numerous references to the absolute necessity of chocolate.

Armed with my copy of Preparedness Principles, I feel like I can really get my food storage and 72-hour kit under control, and keep it that way. It's already solved one onging dilema for me. I'm always wracking my brain to come up with ideas for wedding gifts beyond towels and dishes. Problem solved! A copy of Preparedness Principles and a can of wheat!

If you would like to purchase a copy for yourself, click here.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

"Room for Two" by Abel Keogh

"Sweetie, I'm home." I tried to put as much kindness into my voice as possible. I didn't want to have another argument--at least not right away.



A gunshot echoed from our bedroom, followed by the sound of abullet casing skipping along a wall.

Everything slowed down.

"Room for Two" is the true story of Abel Keogh's struggle after his young wife's suicide, his feelings of guilt that he might have been able to prevent it, and how he was able to find peace and happiness again.

I heard Able speak at a writer's conference and was intrigued enough with his story that I later went to his website to read the first chapter. It was so good I would have run out immediately to get a copy and find out what happened, but everything was closed. I had to wait until the next morning. You can get a copy here. Go ahead. I'll be here when you get back.

Once I had "Room for Two" in my hands I was reluctant to stop reading. I had a pretty good idea how the book would end. (The "About the Author" page in the back is a spoiler.) However, by the second page I was emotionally involved with this story. I stayed up until around 2:00 a.m. to finish it. Yes, it was worth the sleep deprivation the next day.

I guarantee, "Room for Two" is one of those stories you will not easily forget. I'm recommending it to all my bookish friends. (Hey, I wonder if anyone has sent a copy to Oprah?)