It’s Raining, it’s pouring!¬†

My dear fellow preppers, I haven’t forsaken you! Life has tried to sneak up on me and keep me busy.  I’m involved in a lot of great organizations and they require a good bit of my attention sometimes.  

What I want to talk to you about today is the weather. Have you been paying attention to how nasty it has been for most of the US in the recent few weeks?  Maybe you’ve been in the middle of all the storms like I have been and you can’t help but pay attention to them.  It’s been raining in my area of the country off and on for right at nine days now.  YUCK! Actually, if I’m being honest, I love nasty weather.  Now, I love to live in Florida and I love the hot weather we have here because that means that I can go to the beach as often as I’d like… But I’d be lying if I said I didn’t also love the nasty weather we have in spring or even hurricane season during the summer.  

I love it for a few reasons: I love when it’s gloomy and I can sleep in. I love rainy movie days. I love playing in the rain with my nephews. I also have always loved wind and how forceful it can be- it’s amazing! I also love it because it helps me practice my prepping!  

This morning when I left for work my power had just gone out for the second time in the nine day stormy span.  It had been out about twenty minutes by the time I left and I have no idea if it will be back on by the time I get home.  If you’re in this situation, what would you do?  Here’s what I did:

I finished getting dressed. After all, I did have to head to work no matter what kind of state I left my house in. I work in a large, very secure building that could withstand hurricane force winds, so I’m probably safer there than anywhere else I ever go!  To aid in getting dressed, I found my trusty Stream light ProTac HL flashlight. At 600 lumens I didn’t need much else to get dressed. (You can get one too, for about $75. They’re great!) 

…Then I packed my go bag.  In it was a change of clothes, a change of shoes, a bottle of water, three granola bars, a light weight travel blanket and my Streamlight flashlight.  I’m not expecting to need to stay away from home tonight, but it was only a winter or two ago that a giant snow storm went through the south and people were stuck in their offices, homes, or cars over a night or two. I’m sure those people really wished they had their go bags ready, too. 

I actually have several bags that I consider go bag potential, but it all depends on how long I feel like I need to prepare for. For instance, my home stash is growing at a beautiful rate, but if I planned on moving my whole stash at once I would need a couple of tubs and a pick up truck. ūüėČ If I’m just thinking I’ll be away a few hours or overnight, I’ll pack considerably less long term stuff. 

What do you think? Should I carry my full 72 hour kit? How do you decide what goes in which go bag? Let me know! 

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Prepper Tip of the Day: 60 Second/ 24Hr Bug Out Bag Test

Recently I have been experimenting with my supplies. I’ve been reading up, watching videos, and asking around- I want to know what others are doing concerning their bug out bags. I’ve also heard people call these bags their “get out of dodge bags” or their “sh!t hits the fan” bags, but for the sake of this blog, they will be bug out bags.

Today I wanted to test myself. This isn’t the best test ever, because I had plenty of time to think about the the test beforehand, but that really didn’t change the boundaries of the experiment.

I gave myself 60 seconds to grab as much stuff as I could, with the idea that i needed enough to keep me alive in an uncomfortable circumstance for 24 hours. I used a timer and started with everything in its normal storage places. I encourage everyone to try this, it really made me think about my priorities! You can have all the supplies you want, but if you can’t get to them when you need them, they really aren’t going to do you any good, right? So…here goes!

In 60 seconds I came up with:

– black overnight bag (this one happened to be a Coach bag. I guess for today I’ll look like a fancy prepper.)
-2 quarts of water
-long sleeved shirt
-long sleeved sweater
-Kleenex brand wet wipes
-bandana
-Pair of scissors
-toothbrush
-lighter

Things I learned: 60 seconds really isn’t long enough to get my stash together unless it is already in a to go pack. I kept thinking of so many different things I wanted to pack that I had a hard time prioritizing them. So instead of getting one or the other, I didn’t get either. Womp. ūüė¶

Analyze the stash: Over all I don’t think I did too bag for my first test run. I’m pleased that my first thought was to get water. My water happened to be a refilled V8 Splash container that I’ve kept in a cool, dark place and regularly rotated for freshness. My long sleeved shirt and sweater were also good ideas. It is winter (although who would know that, living in Florida) and sometimes it gets cold. Wet wipes are good because they are in a sealed, light weight container. They will help me stay clean. My bandana is good because I can use it for a variety of things: as a washing rag, as a container to hold food I have found, it can keep my hair out of my face, or the sun off of my forehead. Scissors are good because I can cut things like grass or wood to use as shelter. I can also cut food. My toothbrush is a good catch because it’s important to stay healthy. I would say it is kind of silly that it happens to be an electric toothbrush, but it’s not like you can’t use it once the batteries go dead, which they will eventually. Last but not least, I am very glad I grabbed a lighter. Like I said earlier about the long sleeved shirt and sweater: it is winter. It is cold. I plan to use my lighter for making heat or signals or for keeping away any kind of pests that might show up at night.

What I wish I grabbed: 1. some sort of tarp that would make a shelter a little more waterproof. 2. Some kind of food that is easily stored like granola bars or cereal bars. 3. Some sort of first aid and sewing kit. 4. My bag of lint fire starter. 4. My gun(s) and some ammunition, because really, why would I leave home without them?

Now here’s for the challenge: I want to see other’s challenge themselves and I want to know your results! Now, obviously, everyone has a different stash so results will be very different. It will also be different if you have everything in a backpack already and all you have to do is pick up your bag.

Lead & Lace Series: The Three Guns I Can’t Live Without

Everyone has a favorite something. I have recently started doing a good bit of sport shooting and I enjoy it very much. I am actually hoping to one day become sponsored and big and important in the gun industry, but that is another story for another day.

My current three favorite guns, the three I could not live without, are my Glock 19, Gen 4; my custom built AR-15 and my Mossberg Semi-automatic 20 gauge shotgun.

I am under the same mindset as a popular Glock figure, Ermy. There are many Glocks, but this one is mine. I know exactly how mine with perform every single time I pick it up. I know how it acts when I change ammunition, I know how it acts of I’ve put it down for too long without shooting it. (here’s a hint on that one: the gun will never act any differently, but I usually need 50 rounds to warm up if it’s been a while since my last range time.) I let other people shoot it, and I know no one else has shot as many rounds through it as I have, and they may like it, they may love it, but it’s still mine.

If you’re interested in learning more about shooting sports, it is likely that at some point you’ve been on one gun forum or another. If you have been on any of the many, many forums, you may have seen the discussion between Gen 3 and Gen 4 Glocks. Everyone thinks one is vastly different than the other and one is definitely better than the other.

Well, here’s another opinion: I’ve put many rounds through both, and they function and feel very much the same to me. The differences in the two generations are: gen 4s come with changeable back straps, the Glock kit comes with a third magazine that the gen 3s never came with, and the recoil spring is different. The new (gen 4) recoil spring is supposed to make for less noticeable recoil, but I think you’d have to be using a machine to measure the difference, because I sure can’t tell.

MSRP on a Gen 4, G19: $649. If you’re in an area that happens to be saturated with Glocks, they may be as low as $450-550.

Now, when it comes to my AR-15, I had a look that was important to me, more than anything else. I’ve seen all the brands, handled some of them in person, and I knew a few things were important. When it comes to a modern sporting rifle (MSR as they are correctly called) you will want it to be mil-spec (this means that they would meet military specifications. If you aren’t building a gun for military use, then this may mean nothing to you.) You may have a rifle that isn’t specifically mil-spec and it functions perfectly fine- that’s okay- but mil-spec is supposed to be specifically durable. Whatever you do, I would not recommend any polymer parts other than maybe a buttstock or magazine. I know that polymer technology has come a long way and I love my polymer Glock, but there is a lot going on in a rifle to make sure it functions correctly, and you want the strongest, most durable parts possible. At the end of the day steel is stronger than polymer.

So! For Christmas I asked for AR parts. (In case I have anyone anti-gun lingering this far, I feel it important to say that AR does NOT stand for assault rifle. That term is made up. AR stands for Armalite Rifle, the inventor. Duh. ) I specifically did not want a stock AR because I wanted to put together my own rifle so I would know how to do it and I would understand exactly how it functions.

So! If anyone is interested, these are some of the parts I used:

Pink Aero Precision Lower Receiver
Palmetto State Armory Lower and Upper Parts Kits
OSS Flash Hider
Raptor Ambidextrous Charging Handle

I wanted it to be feminine, hence the pink lower receiver, but still Cool looking, so the rest is all black. I love it, I think it fits me perfectly. I have only gotten a chance to put about 100 rounds through it so far but I am very excited about it. As much as anything I’m excited to learn more about them.

My AR is custom built, (and I work around guns so I got mine cheaper than retail). I estimated all of my parts (including the ones not listed here) and if they sold retail the MSRP would be right around $1450.

Now, last but not least… My shotgun.

Now, let me start this section by saying that I am a small human, relatively speaking. I am 5’2″ inches tall and I weigh…well, that’s none of your business. ūüėČ I have never been afraid of shotguns, I have just always assumed that they would never be of any interest to me because I am small and the amount of recoil on them is big. Boy, was I wrong. I would be lying to you if I said there wasn’t any recoil, but there certainly isn’t so much that I felt it so much that I stopped shooting.

Let me break it down for you (shotgun pun intended). The first shotgun I ever shot was an old, side by side 16 gauge with a wood stock and absolute zero padding on the butt stock. This made for a very unpleasant shoot, but I still hit paper. Then, thankfully, a few weeks later I got my hands on a semi- automatic Harrington and Richardson (H&R for short) Excel Auto 12 gauge shotgun. It was so much shorter than the old side by side. It was so much lighter. It was so much prettier. I decided to give it a go.

My dad introduced me to skeet shooting that day. We had a skeet thrower in storage and he found a box of clays (I believe that’s what they’re called, I’m still fairly new to shotguns.) He wanted me to feel a sense of accomplishment, enough so that I’d be interested enough to keep learning. So we set up the thrower, I loaded my shells and… “PULL!”

…I missed. “That’s okay,” he said. “Don’t follow it. Lead it.”

I nodded my head, repeated the phrase a couple of times. I understood the concept- look where you want it to go. This concept is a little different than pistol shooting because with a pistol I paid very little attention to anything other than my sight alignment. I stared down that front sight and squeezed the trigger. Then, just as planned, my round went exactly where I knew it would. Well, back to my shotgun experience.

With the correct idea in my head, I tried again. “PULL!”

The clay went soaring through the air and then, even with my hearing protection on, I could hear a “CRACK!”

I hit it!

That’s really all it took for me to love the sport. The idea that on my second try I could hit it and even if I didn’t hit it… I had a semi automatic shotgun. My shotgun held 3-4 shells at a time, so if I needed to shoot again, I could do that with minimal effort.

So, now for some details on my shotgun. My H&R Excel Auto 12 gauge retails for $500-$600 dollars. I have since also shot a Mossberg Automatic 20 gauge (also retails $500-$600) that I also love. If I was going to be spending a day at the range, I think that I’d probably use the 20 gauge just for the fact that it doesn’t bang up my shoulder quite as much. Now, don’t get me wrong, both are very comfortable and have a lot of pudding on the end, but I bruise easily and you will still feel the sore muscle the next day.

Both of these shotguns come in two different lengths (a standard length and a shorter, tactical version.)

Well, that about wraps it up for this entry! Let me know what guns you can’t live with out!

Prepper Tip of the Day: You Aren’t Drinking Enough…

…water.

Lol, got ya, didn’t I?

Before you start reading, go get yourself a glass of water. You can add a flavor to it if you’d like, just as long as you go get it.

Got it? Good. Read on.

Something that I am definitely trying to do more this year is drink more water. In fact, I’m not just drinking it so I can lose a little weight (which would be cool), or flush my kidneys more efficiently (which would make me feel better). I am drinking more water, well, more liquid in general, because I’m also using it as a headache reliever.

According to WebMd (which we all know is 100% true) the side effects of dehydration are as follows:

Increased thirst
Dry mouth and swollen tongue
Weakness
Dizziness
Palpitations (feeling that the heart is jumping or pounding)
Confusion
Sluggishness fainting
Fainting
Inability to sweat
Decreased urine output
Urine color may indicate dehydration. If urine is concentrated and deeply yellow or amber, you may be dehydrated.

Wouldn’t you want to skip all of those yucky things if you could? Almost one year ago I stopped taking painkillers. Really, I mean it. April 2015 will be one year since I took any kind of painkiller, whether OTC or prescription. I recently went to my doctor in order to check on my acid reflux and she asked me about my diet. It was of no surprise that I consume too many calories a day and I still don’t drink enough water, but I was pleasantly surprised how pleased my doctor was that I don’t take painkillers and only rarely take anything else at all. Now, my doctor is no hippy-all-natural stereotypical lady, but she was so pleased with me all the same. ‘Consuming so many of those things will tear you up.’ She said to me, and I believe her.

So, did we all learn an important lesson today? Not only should you be storing this in our prepper pantries, we should be drinking water and regular exercising. This way if we need to use all of our great new skills, we will be ready for the fight!

P.S. Is anyone storing ammunition or firearms? I got a new one for Christmas so I’m very interested to see what else everyone got.

Starting 2015 With A Stockpile

Okay, you guys, I’ve been working on my stockpile less than a year, and I’ve put so. very. little. actual effort or money into it. I know that if I really worked on it, I could blow it out of the water. ¬†Do you remember this blog post? I made it almost exactly one year ago. ¬†That was before I stocked anything. I was still trying to answer the questions that I posed to all of you. ¬†Now I’ve got answers for my own questions. ¬†I’ll repost the questions to make them fresh on your mind:

1. How much energy am I going to put into this?
-Are you going to work on your prepping everyday? Once a week? One weekend a month?

2. How much money am I going to put into this?
-$50 a week? $1,000? $20 a month? You have to be able to continue to live while you’re prepping!

3. Why am I doing this?
-Am I afraid of government collapse? Am I concerned about a possible hurricane/tornado/earthquake? You have to come to terms with what you want to accomplish, and to do that you have to decide WHY you want to accomplish it in the first place.

4. Who am I going to involve in this?
-Are you preparing and storing enough supplies for just yourself in an emergency? Are you planning to have supplies for other people? Who? Have you considered keeping supplies for your pets?

These questions are all valid to this day. ¬†If you are interested in creating a stockpile for yourself, start there, with those four questions. I’ll start with answering them, myself.

1. I’m going to put as little energy into this as possible. Let’s face it, I’m lazy, but I’d like to think I am a smart lazy. ¬†I want to start with the easy stuff first, and I don’t want to do anything twice if I can help it. ¬†If I work efficiently, it’ll make it all better.

2. Let’s face it, I’m on a budget. ¬†If I can spend $20 a month on prepping supplies, that’d be great. ¬†For the sake of this blog, I’m going to offer prepping solutions that vary in price ranges because I know everyone has a different budget and goal.

3. I’m doing this because I am concerned about being prepared for natural disasters. ¬†Less than ten days ago tornados ripped through small Mississippi towns and killed four people, and hundreds to thousands lost power. What would I do if I lived there? I’m also concerned about the rising cost of food and gas. ¬†If I can save what I can now, maybe I can afford to splurge later. ¬†I’m also concerned about the general state of affairs in America. ¬†What if something were to happen and I can’t make it to the store for three days? ¬†Would I survive?

4. ¬†I’m going to involve my immediate family. ¬†It sounds harsh, but I just can’t prepare for everyone. ¬†I’m going to prepare for the people that live with me, and the people that would immediately be with me in case of emergency. ¬†In my case, that’d be my two parents and my boyfriend. ¬†There, four people. That’s not so hard, right? Two men, two women. ¬†I can handle that. ¬†Pro tip: If several people are going to be using what you’ve stockpiled, then all people involved should help you stockpile. ¬†Go ahead and teach them to rough it now and it won’t be such a shock to them when you need to use those skills in real life.

Want a sneak peek into my stockpile? ¬†I’ll update with pictures when I can, but here’s a list of some of the things in my stockpile:

Shampoo and conditioners
Cottonballs and Q-Tips
Disposable Razors
Toothpaste and Deodorant
Toilet Paper and Paper Towels
Body Wash and Face Wash (full sized and small, travel size)
Rubing Alcohol and Hydrogen Peroxide
Laundry Detergent and Dish Soap
Cans of Green Beans

The green beans were my latest addition because I’m cautious about adding food to my pile. Food is imperative to your stockpile, but I didn’t want to pay full price for food and then manage to let it go to waste.

What’s in your stockpile? What do you want to add to your stockpile this year?

Prepper Tip Of The Day: ABC’s of Ammunition

There are many different brands of ammunition. I haven’t stockpiled any ammo yet, other than my self defense rounds and enough for a day at the range, but I know a good bit about the different types of ammunition. ¬†Here’s a five minute reminder on ammo:

First, there are your FMJ rounds. A full metal jacket (FMJ) is a bullet consisting of a soft core (usually made of lead) encased in a shell of harder metal, such as gilding metal, cupronickel or less commonly a steel alloy. This shell can extend around all of the bullet, or often just the front and sides with the rear left as exposed lead.

Here’s what it often looks like:

FMJ Ammo

This isn’t to say that all¬†FMJ will look exactly like this, but you get the idea.

Then there are¬†HP rounds. ¬†A hollow-point (HP) round will expand upon contact. ¬†You may know this round as “the self defense” round. ¬†This is because it performs much differently upon impact than an FMJ. ¬†An FMJ round will go through¬†an object, while a HP round will open up and spread upon impact.

This is a picture of a hollow point bullet. ¬†Do you see the middle piece of lead where¬†the top ¬†looks like a flower that’s all bloomed out? That is the look of the hollow point lead after it hits something. ¬†Hollow points spread to create more internal damage- if you were to shoot in self defense, it isn’t very likely that your attacker is going to get up and keep coming after encountering this round.

hp

Now, if you know anything about ammunition that’s probably enough to refresh your memory. ¬†If you don’t know much about ammunition, then why don’t you try checking out websites such as these!

The Truth About Guns 

New Year, New Start- Welcome 2015

I’m so excited to start 2015. ¬†It’s been nearly nine months since I’ve worked on this blog at. all. and I’m so ready to get back to it. ¬†I think I’ve managed to make it through the holidays (I’m still holding my breath on NYE weight gain) without my weight ballooning, so it’s pretty exciting.

Here’s a little peek into my 2014:

1. I now have TWO nephews, both are as cute as can be.

2. I’ve got my health under control. If you don’t remember me mentioning them, check out my last post here. ¬†An update on that blog is actually in order, because I took my own advice and I am SO glad that I did. ¬†If you’re curious, it’s been 273 since I’ve taken any kind of pain medication. ¬†That’s amazing, right? What’s even better than that is that¬†I DON’T GET HEADACHES ANYMORE!¬†Other than a mild stomach reliever such as Tums or an allergy medicine like Zyrtek, I haven’t put any medicine in my body in those 273 days, either.

3. I’ve gone from owning zero guns to owning one, building one, and saving up for a third. PHEW! ¬†The more I learn about guns the more I¬†want to learn about guns. ¬†These are NOT¬†scary things, you guys and girls, these are fantastic tools that everyone should learn about. I feel so empowered and so accomplished. ¬†Shooting sports are so great.

4. ¬†I’ve gotten SO good¬†at shopping sales and my stockpile is growing. I am SO proud of my stockpile. ¬†Now, I can’t say that I am scheduled for next season’s extreme couponers (although I have made a friend that could be on that show!) but I’m doing it a little at a time and it’s given me such a sense of relief knowing that I can take care of myself.

5. I’ve found God. ¬†I know that phrasing sounds crazy- I’m not crazy, and I wasn’t drunk when I ‘found’ Him. ¬†I’ve just come to realize that, like everything else, if you let things come naturally, they are so much easier. ¬†My growing¬†spiritual relationship is incredible. ¬†But! That being said, that’s not what this blog is about, so if you’d like to learn about that part of my life, you’re going to have to message me privately.

6.  My hard work in 2014 is leading me to a big educational accomplishment in 2015. Yippee!

Well, that’s six things about my year. ¬†Will that tide you over until I can update again? I’m excited to get back to my roots.

Happy holidays!

-L

Prepper Tip of The Day: Eat Clean, Live Naturally

April 5, 2014

So I’ve been having some health issues (nothing life threatening, just uncomfortable) and it’s caused me to rethink some things.¬† Before I dive in, go ahead and make yourself a glass of water to sip on. If nothing else, do it for me.

Anywho, here’s a short list of the things that I’m focusing on today:

1. How gross is fast food? How gross are chemical preservatives that are harsh on our bodies? How gross is fat and grease and oil?

Thinking on these things, I’m going to work to eat cleaner. I want to eat out less, drive thru less, and spend more time thinking about what I’m putting in my body.

2. If you’re like me, a migraine is an unwelcome, but frequent guest. It seems that everyday at 4 o’clock I’m popping some sort of pain pill to rid myself of a migraine so I can finish out my work day with some of my sanity.

Thinking on these things, I’m going to drink more water. On top of that I’m going to start stretching throughout my day and start looking towards more natural remedies for my pain. (Hopefully I’ll soon be able to update this post with some of those remedies.)

3. How can I call myself prepping for a disaster when I’m allowing myself to be addicted to things that would immediately disappear in case of said disaster? Nothing ridiculous, but I’m talking junk food and some modern conveniences.

In response to this thought, I’m going to attempt to rid myself of these things. They’re not good for my body anyway, and they’re not good for you either.

As of this writing, I’m 8 days without any type of medicine or drug in my body. If you knew me, you’d know this was just short of a miracle because I love my Advil and Aleve.

Any who, that’s my thought for the day.

Prepper Tip of the Day: Keeping Records

One of my New Year’s resolutions was to make sure that I have a 6-12 month supply of my necessities as soon as possible.

I’ve encountered a few interesting things since I’ve started this plan. 1. Couponing is kind of addictive. I find it really hard, now more than ever, to say no to BOGOs. 2. You don’t really know how fast or slow you can go through your supplies until you start keeping track of them. Duh. 3. If you don’t know how long something will last, you don’t really know what it costs per use, do you?

For example, I purchased a bottle of my favorite shampoo in November and have been using the same bottle of shampoo since Thanksgiving weekend. Isn’t that ridiculous? Let’s do some math: this shampoo normally costs $4.99 for 12.6 ounces. When I bought it, it was on sale for $3.49 and I had a manufacturer’s coupon for BOGO… when means I bought TWO for $3.49 or $1.74 for one 12.6 ounce bottle. This means that each ounce costs approximately ¬Ę .13 right? If I washed my hair twice a week since then- which is about accurate- I’ve had 24 hair washes out of this bottle and I STILL have about 25% left. Now, you can divide that out to see just how many pennies it costs to wash my hair, but I don’t want to bore you.

My point is, now I know I can go four months on a bottle of shampoo, but I can only go about 2-3 on a bottle of conditioner for the same retail/sale prices.

Now I am marking all of my consumables with the date that I open them so I can make notes of how long it takes me to consume them. I’ve labeled shampoo, conditioner, Q-Tips and cotton balls, a spool of thread, feminine items, a roll of tape, a roll of toilet paper… you get the idea.

This will help me to know how much I need to create my 6-12 month stockpile.

For instance, now I have 3 shampoos and 2 conditioners. This equals about 12 months worth of shampoo and 5-6 months of conditioner.

So that’s your tip for the day! Use it as you will. ūüôā

Prepper tip of the day: Starting A Fire

Okay, so these tips ‘of the day’ won’t actually come every single day, but hopefully they will come often enough to help you.

Today we’re talking about starting a fire. In the woods, in your back yard, or in your fire place, here are some tips to help you start a fire. By having one or more of these supplies ready for a SHTF scenario, you will be able to provide yourself warmth, a smoke signal, or maybe even some security!

1. Petroleum jelly + round cotton ball.
—Search YouTube for this one, there are videos all over the place. Get a small glob of petroleum jelly in one hand (better wear gloves) and a hand full of cotton balls in the other. You want to coat the cotton ball without saturating it. Let it soak in as needed. Store in a Ziploc bag. When you’re ready to light it, pul the cotton apart just enough to fluff it. Light with a cigarette lighter or match and watch it burn for 10-20 minutes versus 1-3 without any petroleum jelly.

2. Candle wax + flat cotton rounds.
—Dip a cotton round in candle wax until it is coated. Let dry, store in a dry place, as with other candles.

3. Mint tin+ cardboard + wax.
—Cut cardboard in a long strip so that it is as wide as the mint tin is deep. Turn cardboard strip on the side and roll/shape to fit cardboard into the container on its’ side, NOT flat. Doing it flat will suffocate it. Now, melt old wax from candles and the like, and pour over the cardboard in the tin. When you light this, the entire tin will ignite.

4. Egg Carton + Dryer Lint or Saw Dust+ Wax
—Take an empty paper egg carton and fill it with dryer lint or saw dust. Pour melted candle wax over each cup. Cut apart if needed. Ignite with a lighter or match.

These are my four of my favorite alternative ways to start a fire. What are yours?