Free Samples from Valley Food Storage – Emergency Food Kits

Valley Food Storage Emergency Kits

Have your family ready for that unexpected emergency with Valley Food Storage. With a 25-year shelf life, Valley Food Storage offers the highest quality and real ingredients in all of their products. Experience healthy, great tasting food storage that will get you through unpredictable times.

Great for Camping

Not only does Valley Food Storage offer long-lasting food products for emergencies, they also have great tasting meal options for the avid camper or backpacker. These freeze-dried meal kits can be added to any camping pantry and make quick, easy, delicious meals while on your adventure.

You can choose from a variety of breakfast items, eggs and dairy, as well as lunch/dinner meals. There are even gluten free and dairy free options for those with specific dietary needs.

Valley Food Storage

Monthly Kit Options

Get your 1 month, 3 month, 6 month or 1 year supply and be ready for any situation. The prices are incredible and compared to the other leading companies, much more affordable.

They have a basic and a premium food kit option. The kits are designed to feed 1 person for the month specified. For instance, the 3-month kit would feed 1 person for 3 months.

Free Samples

Want to give Valley Food Storage a try? They’ve made it easy, by allowing you to get Free Samples to put their product to the test. There is no shipping or hidden charges. Simply try them out for yourself and discover how delicious these meals are.

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What is the Cairn Subscription Box?

CairnMonthly subscription boxes are all the rage right now and there are so many varieties of boxes available. Everything from nutrition snack boxes to boxes for dogs.

As an avid outdoor enthusiast, I recently started searching for outdoor/camping subscription boxes and I came across Cairn. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised!

Cairn is based in Bend, Oregon and strives to inspire people to get outside and discover new products that will enrich and expand their experience. The word Cairn refers to a man-made stack of rocks that is usually used to mark trails.

What is the Cairn Subscription Box About?

Basically the Cairn Subscription Box is outdoor inspiration delivered monthly to your door. If you are an outdoor adventure enthusiast or someone who loves camping and being outside in general, then you will love this subscription box.

Every month, you are sent a box of 3-6 amazing outdoor products. The contents inside the box are valued at $50 and up. You simply subscribe, wait for your box, and enjoy. They also have a way that you can review the products and get rewarded with points. Points can be accumulated and once you have enough, you can get a free box.


What is The Cairn Subscription Box


Once you subscribe for your first box, it will be sent to you within a week or two… I got mine in about 5 days. After that, the box is sent around the middle of each month.

It is a subscription, so every month you will be billed, but you can easily cancel and even restart your subscription at any time. So if your budget gets tight and you need to give your wallet a break, you can stop the monthly subscription and then crank it back up again when you want.

2 Subscription Levels

There are 2 separate boxes that you can sign up for. The “Original Box” is the one that I described above and it’s only $29.95 per month. The contents inside are valued at over $50. It is delivered monthly.

Cairn Subscription Box

The 2nd type of box you can subscribe to is called the “Obsidian Box” and it is delivered quarterly. This box includes 5-10 PREMIUM outdoor products (valued at $300+) and costs $199 per quarter.

What Comes in the Box?

Once you subscribe, you are given a profile survey to fill out. This gives Cairn more information about the kind of outdoor activities you enjoy, your apparel sizes, food & drink preferences and so on. This info allows them to better personalize your box.


Cairn Subscription Box
The boxes include items such as gloves, beanies, cookware, gear, energy bars, freeze-dried meals, lip balms, insect repellent, fire starters and first aid items. One of the first boxes I received had an LED headlamp that featured 4 different brightness settings. And I believe one of the boxes over the past summer had a hammock with tree straps.

The Obsidian Box has more Premium items in it. Items such as a Marmot winter jacket, ThermaRest camping chair, Premium lanterns, trekking poles, sleeping bags, etc. In other words, this box includes more big ticket items.

The Brands Cairn Works With

Clif Bar
Hydro Flask
Gossamer Gear
Mountain Smith
And Many Many More!!!

Conclusion – Is it Worth It?

I personally subscribe to this amazing box and I always look forward to walking out to the mailbox and getting that month’s box. It’s like Christmas every month. I like the fact that they personalize the box based on what you are interested in.

I’m contemplating subscribing to the Obsidian Box in the future in order to upgrade my personal inventory of outdoor gear. But so far the Original Box is great and I haven’t been disappointed yet.

I’m even setting aside some of the items that I receive to give as gifts to family and friends for Birthdays or Christmas. Technically that’s not “re-gifting”, is it? Shh don’t tell.

If you are someone who loves the outdoors, camping, skiing, backpacking, etc then you will love this box. I highly suggest signing up at least for a few months and see how you like it.

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Finally a Mosquito Repellent That Doesn’t Suck

Mosquito RepellantThis past weekend I was on a mission to finish assembling the new patio furniture set that I recently bought for our back patio. The temperature was about 85 degrees and the mosquitoes were out if full force as usual. We haven’t had enough cold weather yet to get rid of them, so you either have to deal with them or stay inside all day.

The patio furniture was not going to put itself together, although that would have been great, right? So I decided to brave the heat and bugs and just get it done so we can enjoy our back patio once the cooler weather arrives.

I set up the assembly area inside my garage so that I would have less mosquitoes to worry about, but obviously they still exist in there. The day before I had been out there for only 5 minutes and got bitten 10 times. This is the story of my life… mosquitoes LOVE me and like to show their undying affection for me by constantly reminding me of their presence.

So Sunday, I decided that if I was going to get anything done out there, I would need to spend more time and that meant more exposure to my little friends. I needed something that would keep the little suckers at bay while I did work. But I wasn’t interested in smelling like bug spray all day or getting that sticky feeling that most bug sprays leave all over.

I had done a blog post a while back about getting rid of mosquitoes and other bugs while camping, so I decided to put one of the tricks to the ultimate test. I had tried it out before, but I always like to test those kind of things out several times in different conditions just to be thorough.

Baby Creamy OilBefore walking out to the garage, I took the tube of Johnson’s Baby Creamy Oil lotion and applied a thin layer to my arms, neck and face. I love that if isn’t greasy at all and leaves you feeling quite refreshed. The smell is also about 100 times better than any bug spray, even those that claim they are unscented.

I was still a bit nervous about whether or not this would really work, but I gave it a go. As soon as I started working on the patio furniture, I felt a little buzzing near my ear and sure enough, mosquitoes were present. They wanted to help I guess.

But then a strange thing happened, I didn’t have any itchiness or red welts… so I continued working. I got one chair completely assembled and took a quick break. Not one bite was found anywhere on my skin.

I went inside for some water and to cool off a bit, and then decided to re-apply the lotion. I’ve often found that I need to re-apply mosquito repellent often and this lotion is so pleasant that I really didn’t mind.

The verdict regarding this particular mosquito repellent is that it is GOLD!!!! The fact that it is pleasant to put on as well as smells rather good is just the tip of the iceberg. The real test is whether or not it works… and I have to say that it absolutely WORKS.

I even noticed while I was assembling the furniture that a few mosquitoes would land on my arm and then immediately take off without sticking around to bite me. I guess they didn’t like the lotion. Sorry mosquitoes… we may just have to break up. It’s been a good ride, but you really never treated me right.

Have I found my new go-to mosquito repellent? You bet! As long as it works, I’m stocking up. I will say that I had a hard time finding the exact lotion I needed. For whatever reason most stores don’t carry it. But I did locate it on Amazon and that’s probably where I will continue to buy it.

Pro Tips: Re-apply the lotion OFTEN… it just makes good sense.

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AquaBrew San Marcos – Brunch and a Brew

AquaBrew San MarcosOn a recent trip to the Texas hill country, we made a quick stop in San Marcos and discovered a great little brewery downtown. AquaBrew Restaurant & Brewery is relatively new to the scene, but already gaining popularity. When we visited, there were already about half a dozen people enjoying a Saturday morning brunch and brew. We got there shortly after it opened up for the day, so to see so many people was a bit surprising but it also told us that this place must be good!


Getting There – Yelp Assisted

Our Yelp app led us a little astray at first, but we figured out how to get there. AquaBrew is located about half a block south of the square. We took a little alleyway to a back parking lot and then proceeded to approach the building through their back patio. The outdoor area, which they refer to as the beer garden, looked quite inviting with several picnic style tables, large fans, and an outdoor stage area. We definitely plan on going back some nice fall evening when there is live music and we can sit outside enjoying the weather. AquaBrew’s beer garden area is dog friendly, so we might even bring our dog if he can promise to behave for once.

AquaBrew San Marcos

We found out later that Yelp could have sent us to the front of the building but we would have had to park on the street, so the back alley parking was just fine. The front also has small patio with a few tables if you like to sit outside and people watch.

AquaBrew San Marcos

To be clear, AquaBrew is located at 150 S LBJ Dr (formerly known as Austin St).


Brunch and a Brew

Once inside, we made our way to the bar and sat down. We were greeted by a very friendly bartender who gave us the drink menu as well as the Saturday brunch menu. She informed us that they have been there for only about 1.5 years. They make 10 brews in-house and also offer a variety of “beer to go” options. They also have 3 local guest taps that they rotate occasionally.

AquaBrew San Marcos   


The brunch menu was not exactly what I expected… but in a good way! They serve a modern American cuisine that features unique dishes such as Artichoke Benedict with Romesco Sauce, Sticky Edamame, and Bacon Jam Fries. Prices range from $6 to $17, with most items being around $12. Every delicious item pairs well with the selection of beer or craft cocktails they offer.

As any good brunch menu should have, they also offer a variety of Mimosa’s for only $4. The Mimosa choices include grapefruit, peach-mango, cranberry, and orange.


More Food and Fun

We were only there for the brunch menu, but AquaBrew’s Executive Chef Joe Feldmann has created a fantastic menu for lunch as well as dinner. There is even a “Just for Kids” menu that features popular kid favorites like PB&J and Grilled Cheese.

As I mentioned before, there is also Live Local Music at the AquaBrew Beer Garden. Most of these events are in the evenings on weekends (Thursdays – Sundays).


Beer to Go

AquaBrew San Marcos

Most breweries these days have a “beer to go” option for those that want to enjoy the craft brews at home. AquaBrew has several different options when it comes to taking it with you. You can get what’s called a “Crowler” which is a 32 ounce can of whatever AquaBrew you prefer. You can also get the Crowler 3 pack, which is simply 3 cans of your choice of brews.

The Growler is a 64 ounce glass container that most people seem to choose. And they also have a very select “Growler Club 100” which is only open to the first 100 members. So basically you join the club and you receive 10 fills, a club card, and a drink tank of your choice. At the time we were there, there were only 71 member spots left.


Wine – Because Not Everyone Drinks Beer

While they are primarily a brewery, AquaBrew offers a great selection of wine from all over the world. Personally I would like to see a few local wines offered in the future, but for now there is definitely plenty of good styles to choose from.

When I looked around the interior of the building, I noticed a really great thing… there were people of all ages enjoying the food and fare this place had to offer. Some had a cold craft beer in front of them, while others sipped a chardonnay with their friends. This is what I like to see at a local establishment… people bonding and having a good time while enjoying what makes them happy.


Check It Out For Yourself

If you are ever in the San Marcos area, I really suggest you try this place out. You will be pleasantly surprised and if you see me there, be sure to stop and say hello. I might even buy you a drink!

Aquabrew San Marcos


Visit the AquaBrew Official Website for more info

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The Best Camping Stoves of 2017

Having the right camping stove can mean the difference between an awesome camping experience and a mediocre camping experience. While cooking over the camp fire is always fun, sometimes a proper camp stove is necessary in order to put out great meals for the entire family.

There are tons of different kinds of camping stoves to choose from and finding exactly what will work best for your situation is key. Will you be backpacking and need a lightweight camping stove or will you need a 2 burner camping stove in order to feed a big group?

I’ve compiled a list of the best stoves in each category below.

Pro Tip: It’s always a good idea to have more than one type of stove in your camping kit. It can always be used as a backup in case of emergency or if your main camping stove suffers damage or is inoperable.


Best Backpacking Stoves

Backpacking Stoves tend to be lightweight and compact. They often are 1 burner and use minimal fuel. When looking for a stove for backpacking, be sure to find one that boils quickly and can withstand the various conditions you might encounter (wind, rain, freezing temps, etc).


1. Jetboil Flash Cooking System – $99.95

Best Backpacking Stove


Fuel Type: Canister
Fuel: Isobutane-propane
Auto Ignition
Integrated Pot
Dimensions: 7.1 x 4.5 x 4.1 inches
Liquid Capacity: 1 Liter or 33.8 fluid ounces
Weight: 15.25 ounces


This is actually a full cooking system that includes the pot stabilizer, supports and jetboil cooking cup. The only thing not included is the canister of fuel. It comes in 6 different unique colors/patterns including a realtree camo print. Boil liquid in just over 2 minutes. Enjoy an easy push button ignition that gets you quickly started heating your meal or beverage.


2.  MSR PocketRocket 2 Stove – $44.95

Best Backpacking Stove

Fuel Type: Canister
Fuel: Isobutane-propane
Average Boil Time: 3.5 minutes
Dimensions: 7.25 x 5 x 4 inches
Weight: 2.6 ounces


This is one of my favorite compact stoves that is perfect for backpacking. It simply attaches to the fuel canister and it holds a variety of sizes of pots. I love how much space it saves in my pack and that it doesn’t require a lot of set up. It has a fully adjustable flame making it easy to choose between a rolling boil or a soft simmer. Gourmet meals in the backcountry are easy to whip up with this little gadget.


3.  MSR DragonFly Backpacking Stove – $139.95

Best Backpacking Stove

Fuel Type: Liquid
Fuel: Diesel, Auto, White Gas, Jet, Kerosene
Average Boil Time: 3 min. 30 seconds
Dimensions: 6.3 x 5 x 3.5 inches
Weight: 14 ounces


This is a completely durable stove that features great stability and the ability to accommodate large group cooking situations. The DragonFly can actually be utilized for more gourmet outdoor cooking including baking for those that want to try their hand at it.


Best 2 Burner Camping Stoves

Having more than one burner on your camping stove allows you to cook more than one thing at a time or to cook more of the same thing for a big group. Whatever you situation, a 2 burner camping stove is a lifesaver in most campsites with more than 2 people.


1.  Camp Chef Summit 2-Burner Camp Stove – $99.95

Best Camping StoveFuel Type: Canister
Fuel: Propane
Auto Ignition
Heat Output: 20,000 BTUs
Average Boil Time: 2.5 minutes
Dimensions: 23.5 x 11.5 x 4.25 inches
Distance between burners: 12 inches
Weight: 12 pounds


The Summit 2-Burner stove is a workhorse with 2 big 20,000 BTU burners. There is also a temperature control that allows you to fine-tune the flame. With a strong steel cooking grate, you can even use heavy cast iron cookware without damaging the stove. Cooking for a large group is so easy on this surface as well. I’m also a fan of the adjustable legs on the bottom of the unit that let you level out the stove if you are on an uneven surface.


2. Camp Chef Mountaineer 2-Burner Stove – $229.95

Best Camping StoveFuel Type: Bulk Tank
Fuel: Propane
Auto Ignition
Heat Output: 20,000 BTUs
Average Boil Time: 3 minutes, 10 seconds
Dimensions: 27.25 x 14.75 x 7 inches
Distance between burners: 11.5 inches
Weight: 15 pounds


The Mountaineer is a heavy duty, slightly bulky 2 burner stove that can handle whatever you throw at it. It is made from corrosion-resistant aluminum that is lightweight and super durable. Table legs can be purchased and added in order to use this stove for tailgates or barbeques. With an regulator and a 5 ft hose, the Mountaineer is designed to be used with a bulk propane tank so you can cook virtually anything that requires more fuel and longer cooking times (like game-day chili).


3.  Jetboil Genesis Basecamp System Camp Stove – $349.95

Best Camping StoveFuel Type: Canister
Fuel: Propane
Heat Output: 10,000 BTUs
Average Boil Time: 3 min, 15 seconds
Dimensions: 9.8 x 4.6 inches
Weight: 9 lbs. 5 oz.
Integrated Pot
Liquid Capacity: 5 Liters or 169 fl. Oz

This camp stove system includes a 5 L FluxPot and a 10 inch ceramic coated fry pan. I like this stove because it can fold up easily but still allows you to have a 2 burner stove while backpacking or camping. It is a lot easier than carrying around one of the larger briefcase style 2 burner stoves.


Best Electric Camping Stoves

A lot of campsites now come equipped with electricity and water, so having a portable electric stove is definitely an option. This is also a great alternative for people that are in a Pop-Up style camper


1. Kung Fu Master Single Burner Electric Stove – Buy Now

 Electric camping stoveAdjustable temp controls (Lo, Med, High settings)
1,000 watts
Stainless steel drip pan
Dimensions: 11.5 x 9 inches
Weight : 2.85 pounds


The Kung Fu Master electric stove is so convenient and small. When you need a simple single plate stove top and you have access to electricity, this is the best option. The temperature controls range from Lo to Med to High for various cooking needs. This is also a great addition to any dorm room (which if you think about it is a lot like camping sometimes.)


2. Elite Cuisine Maxi-Matic Electric Stove – Buy Now

Electric Camping Stove7 inch and 6 inch cast iron flat cooking plates
Dual adjustable temp controls (Lo, Med, High)
1,440 watts
Dimensions: 18.5 x 11.5 x 3.6 inches
Weight : 8 pounds
Portable for convenient cooking (camping, college dorms, offices, tiny houses)

The Maxi-Matic electric stove features 2 different sized cast iron cooking surfaces (7 Electric Camping Stoveinch and 6 inch). It is powerful at 1,440 watts and is small, so it won’t take up too much room in your camping gear. This stove is also perfect for tiny houses and pop up campers.


Best Wood Camping Stoves

Cooking with wood is great because wood is usually very plentiful and you don’t have to worry about running out of fuel. If you are camping in an area that allows you to gather firewood then a wood stove is also going to save you money.


1. Solo Stove Lite – Compact Wood Burning Stove – $69.99

Wood Burning Camping StovesWood Burning camping stoves

Packed size: Height 3.8 inches, Width 4.25 inches
Assembled size: Height 5.7 inches, Width 4.25 inches
Weight: 9 oz
Materials: 304 stainless steel, nichrome wire
Fuel: sticks, twigs, pine cones and other biomass
Boil time: 8-10 mins (32 fl oz of water)

The Solo Stove is designed with a double wall that has unique airflow properties. This makes it extremely efficient. It runs on just a handful of twigs or an alcohol burner.  There is also very little smoke produced by this stove as a result of the design.

Solo Stove is the 2017 Gear of the Year winner and is a Backpacker Magazine Recommendation. It is a must-have for all serious backpackers, survivalists, and campers.


2.  WoodFlame Ultra Lightweight Wood Burning Camping Stove – Buy Here

Wood Burning Camping Stoves              Wood Burning Camping Stoves

Dimensions: 7.5 x 0.25 x 6 inches
Weight: 1.1 pounds
Easy set up and take down
Collapsible (Folds Flat)

The WoodFlame is a light weight, collapsible camping stove that is made with high grade stainless steel. It folds flat and comes with a nylon carrying case.


3.  Ohuhu Portable Stainless Steel Wood Burning Camping Stove – Buy HereWood Burning Camping Stoves              Wood Burning Camping Stoves

The Ohuhu Wood Burning Stove is easy to set up and extremely affordable. It has a stable cooking platform (3 arm pot support system) that reduces the chance of tipping over. There is no feeding slot on this stove, so you cannot add more wood while there is a cooking pot in place. However, this design gives the stove a consistent, hot and efficient burn that feeding slots would interfere with.


4.  EcoZoom Rocket Stove Versa – Buy Here

Wood Burning Camping Stoves          Wood Burning Camping Stoves

Dimensions: 12.5 x 11 x 11 inches
Weight: 16 pounds
Refractory metal combustion chamber
Abrasion-resistant, lightweight ceramic insulation
Two hinged doors
3-pronged universal cast iron stove top

The EcoZoom Rocket Stove is great for outdoor patio, camping and emergency situations. It is eco-friendly and energy efficient. Cooking can be done with wood, charcoal, or solid biomass fuel. The Versa is also extremely durable and has reinforced doors to ensure that it will last for a long long time.


Best Solar Camping Stoves

Solar stoves are a great way to utilize the power of the sun to cook your meals. When fuel is not available or wood cannot be burned because of burn bans, the use of a solar stove is priceless. Having at least one solar stove in your camping or survival gear is a very good idea. It makes a great backup stove and is also great for the environment.


1.  GoSun Sport Solar Stove – $279.00

Solar Stove

Max Temp: 700 degrees F (371 deg C)
Material: Durable Borosilicate
Cooking Chamber: Evacuated glass tube
Stainless Steel cooking tray
Weight: 9 lbs


The GoSun is a extremely fast and powerful with the ability to cook a meal in 20 minutes using only the heat from the sun. It reaches temperatures of over 550 degrees F. It can bake, boil or fry any food you want.


2. Sunflair Mini Solar Oven – $79.95

Solar Stove


Dimensions: 11 x 5 x 13 inches
Weight: 1.25 pounds
Max Temp: 285 degrees F



The Sunflair solar oven utilizes the sun to gently simmer liquids or food. The 3 wall system helps to capture and reflect the sun’s rays. Included is a thermometer to help you know what temperature you are cooking at. Many people use this particular cooking method by setting it up on the dash of their vehicle.

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Wise Company Cheesy Lasagna Review

Wise Company Survival Food Reviews

Today’s Wise Company Survival Food Review features Cheesy Lasagna. The overall taste, ease of preparation, and price point are reviewed by yours truly.  Let me try before you buy!

Product: Cheesy LasagnaWise Company Cheesy Lasagna
Brand: Wise Company
My rating: 9/10

About the Brand

Wise Company takes great pride in helping people prepare for the unexpected. They offer emergency food kits, long-term food kits, and emergency supplies. They also have a camping food selection for those who just want convenient options while camping or backpacking.

With over 99% satisfaction rate, Wise Company is the nation’s leader in emergency preparedness. Their products are made with premium ingredients in the USA to ensure a long shelf life and great taste.

My Review

The name “Cheesy Lasagna” may be a little deceiving. Obviously this being a package meal, it wasn’t really a traditional layered lasagna. It was more of a pasta dish with all the flavors of a beef lasagna. The noodles that were used were small tagliatelle noodles which helped it resemble a lasagna a little more. Had they used elbows or spiral noodles, it would have been weird.

This package served 4, and we prepared it while camping on the beach. I loved the fact that is was a “just add water” preparation. This made it extremely easy and aside from stirring it occasionally, there was no other prep involved.

Campfire cooking  DSCF3827

The taste was fantastic. I thought that all the flavors of a lasagna were there, except maybe for the ricotta cheese. As I said, the noodles were small and flat and slightly curly. The tomato sauce was very good. Sometimes pasta dishes can have an acidic quality, but this one was perfect. It also tasted like it had been prepared from scratch… not like the canned ravioli or pasta dishes you find in the grocery store.

Cheesy Lasagna

Product Info


Tagliatelle Pasta (Semolina Flour [Wheat], Niacin, Ferrous Sulfate [Iron], Thiamine Mononitrate, Riboavin, Folic Acid), Sausage (Freeze-Dried Pork, Salt, Spices, Sugar, Sodium Phosphate), Textured Vegetable Protein ([Soy Flour, Caramel Color], Soybean Oil, Salt, Natural Flavoring [Autolyzed Yeast Extract, Maltodextrin, Natural Smoke Flavoring], Dextrose, Spices, Garlic Powder), Dried Tomatoes, Sweet Whey Powder, Food Starch – Modied, Potato Flour, Salt, Parmesan and Romano Cheese (Pasteurized Part-Skim Milk, Salt, Cheese Culture, Enzymes), Coconut Oil, Corn Syrup Solids, Natural Flavors, Sugar, Garlic Powder, Spices, Onion Powder, Guar Gum, Partially Hydrogenated Soybean and/or Cottonseed Oil, Oleoresin Paprika and Turmeric (Color), Sodium Caseinate, Mono and Diglycerides, Dipotassium Phosphate, Caramel Color.

Nutritional Information

Other Information

  • 7 year shelf life
  • Easy to Prepare… Just add water
  • Affordable Price (Case of 6 for $41.99)
  • Convenient Packaging
  • Net Wt = 6oz

Who is this product for?

  • Campers
  • Backpackers
  • Preppers
  • Emergency Planners

Final Thoughts


This product was incredibly easy to prepare, just add water.  I love that there weren’t any other complicated steps or several packets to open and add throughout the cooking process.  Just one package that gets added to boiling water…. Perfect.  It also has a 7 year shelf life.


This particular meal didn’t resemble actual lasagna, however the flavor was excellent.

My Rating:


Where Can You Get it?

        Wise Company products are available at

You May Also Like…

Creamy Pasta with Chicken Camping Food (Case of 6)

Creamy Pasta with Chicken Camping Food (Case of 6)


Chili Mac with Beef Camping Food (Case of 6)

Chili Mac with Beef Camping Food (Case of 6)


Hunters Survival Kit

Hunters Survival Kit





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Get Rid of Mosquitoes and Other Bugs While Camping

Camping HacksOne of the most annoying things while camping is the presence of insects, bugs and pests.  Dealing with them can be tricky unless you know what will really work.  Try these camping hacks next time you go camping to help you repel mosquitoes and drive away the ants.

Camping Hacks for Bugs

Burn Sage

I discovered this hack while researching plants that help repel Burn Sage to Repel Mosquitoesmosquitoes.  I always have a very extreme reaction to mosquito bites and I’m constantly on the hunt for ways to keep them out of my life.  Burning a bundle of sage leaves will actually repel mosquitoes and keep them away from your campsite.  So bring some sage along with you and toss it in your campfire to ensure a bite free evening.



Johnson’s Baby Creamy Oil

Johnson's Baby Creamy OilAnother great mosquito repellent hack is to use Johnson’s Baby Creamy Oil.  It works wonders and really does repel those pesky mosquitoes.  Plus you won’t smell like traditional bug sprays.

Other oils and lotions sometimes work too, but this one is the absolute best and I always keep some in my camping kit.




Remove Ticks with a Cotton BallRemove Ticks with Liquid Hand Soap

Soak a cotton ball with liquid hand soap and apply it to the tick.  After a few minutes, the tick will release easily from the skin.

You can either pre-soak the cotton balls at home and store in ziploc baggies, or just bring all the ingredients with you and soak them once a tick happens to appear.

Ticks can carry lyme disease, so you might want to have the tick tested if you were exposed to it for a long period of time. After removing it, you can simply place it back in the ziploc bag until you get home.



Use Grits to Repel Ants

Now this little hack is useful not onUse Instant Grits to Repel Antsly for camping, but for any outdoor activity like picnics, kids soccer games, backyard barbecues.  Simply sprinkle Instant Grits anywhere you see ants… they will flee immediately.

The theory here is that ants basically do not like “new” or strange things being added to their environment.  Add some dry grits and they get annoyed and tend to leave.



Fill Ziploc Bags with Water

Keep flies away by hanging bags of water around your campsite.  Just fill a Ziploc style sandwich bag with water and hang it up.  Flies will avoid the area completely.

I’m sure you have probably seen this technique at restaurants or food trucks that have outdoor eating areas.  Most of the Mexican restaurants where I live that have patio seating, have these little baggies hanging around… but no flies!


Use Mothballs to Combat SnakesRepel Snakes

Place Mothballs around your tent and campsite to ward off most snakes.  I heard somewhere that you can use the plastic lid of water bottles to put the mothballs in so they don’t go rolling around.

Mothballs repel snakesI have to say that I have personally never tried this hack, and from what I understand there are some people that say this works and others who say it doesn’t.  Recently we’ve had about 3 different snakes hanging out near our back door, so I may try this and report back. Stay tuned for an update.


Leave a comment if you’ve ever tried any of these camping hacks or if you have other hacks that I didn’t mention here. I would love to hear about your hacking successes.

Posted in Camping Hacks, Camping Tips, Uncategorized and tagged , , , by with 3 comments.

Govino Unbreakable Wine Glass Review

Have you ever been out camping or traveling on the road and wanted to relax with a nice glass of wine?  Sounds like an easy thing to do, but you have to pack (carefully) glassware unless you plan on drinking straight from the bottle. Enter the Shatterproof Wine Glass!!!! It’s a game changer and it’s useful for more than just camping…. poolside parties, hot tubs, picnics…. anywhere you don’t want breakable glass.

Product: Govino Shatterproof Wine Glasses
Price: $12.95 USD (set of 4)Unbreakable Wine Glasses
My rating: 10/10

About the Brand

Govino originally started in 2008 in order to provide wine makers with stemware while they were on the go selling their product. As a result, Govino was the first unbreakable wine glass to be accepted by the wine industry.

Govino products are made from a flexible, BPA polymer. This makes them not only recyclable but also reusable. And it also properly showcases all types of wines, beers, and spirits. Govino glasses look and perform like fine crystal.

The unbreakable glasses are perfect for camping, picnics, poolside parties, and anywhere breakable glass is not wanted.

My Review – A Wine Glass for Camping

I always enjoy a glass of wine to relax at the end of the day and when I’m traveling or camping, that is even more true. Recently while spending the weekend at a cabin near Medina Lake, my husband found these awesome wine glasses. He actually surprised me with them because he knows just how much I like my wine and champagne on vacations.

Unbreakable Wine Glass

The look of the glasses resembles regular crystal glasses, however they are much lighter and they have an indention for your thumb. This allows you to swirl the glass the way most wine enthusiasts always seem to do. The glass is slightly flexible and is easy to clean. Govino also has a top rack only dishwasher safe version.

  GoVino Wine GlassGovino Champagne Glass

Product Info

This product is made of ultra thin, flexible BPA free polymer. It is shatterproof, reusable, and recyclable. Made in the USA!

Price and Size

$12.95 USD for a set of 4, 16 oz wine glasses

Who is this product for?

  • CampersGovino Wine Picnic
  • Backpackers
  • Travellers
  • Party Goers
  • Picnic Lovers
  • Anyone who drinks on the go

Final Thoughts


The fact that this product is unbreakable is probably the best pro of all. It is also easily packed for travel and it looks exactly like regular glass. Another pro is that they are extremely affordable.  $12.95 for a set of 4 is an incredible deal.


Not really any cons to this product. I mean it holds alcohol… that’s NEVER a bad thing! 😉

My Rating:



Where Can You Get it?

Govino products are available on

You May Also Like…


Govino Decanter 28 oz


Govino Champagne Flutes

Govino Beer Glasses

Posted in Gear Reviews, Products, Uncategorized and tagged , , , by with 6 comments.

Cold Weather Camping Tips – When Winter Hits

Camping in cold weather can be invigorating and fun.  I personally enjoy escaping the heat of summer and jumping in to fall and winter.  I mean what’s better than a chilly night around the campfire?

As the temperature starts to drop and the cold starts slowly creeping in , we begin thinking about getting outside and enjoying all that nature has to offer. There are less bugs and frankly less people out in the the cold weather, which makes camping a great activity.  Winter camping can be cold, but it does not have to be miserable.  As long as you are prepared with the correct winter camping gear and tricks, you will have an extremely enjoyable time.

Cold Weather Camping Tips

While winter camping in Texas (or elsewhere in the country), can seem extreme at times, it shouldn’t deter you from enjoying the outdoors.  Here are a few cold weather camping tips to help you stay warm, dry and comfortable on your winter camping trip.

Sleep with Your Boots Cold Weather Camping tips

Place your boots or boot liners in the bottom of your sleeping bag to keep them warm.  There is nothing worse than waking up and having to put on frozen boots. Your body heat will help keep them at an ideal temperature throughout the night.

Pee Bottles

The need to urinate during the night is always a nuisance, but when the weather turns cold, it is even more brutal.  If you have to pee, it’s best to go ahead and let it out. The best thing is to have a well-marked pee bottle handy so you don’t have to venture out into the cold weather to relieve yourself.  There are even funnel devices for women that are a lifesaver in these situations.

Dress for the Weather

Layers are your best friend in the winter camping season.  Layer up in order to stay warm but also have the option of discarding clothing if you begin to sweat throughout the day. Polyester thermal underwear is a great option or breathable fleece. Try to avoid cotton socks… the best thing is wool or polyester. Pack a scarf or neck gaiter to keep your core warm.

Good Sleeping Pad

Try to choose a closed cell foam pad or a sleeping pad with an R value of 4 or more. Believe it or not, a good sleeping pad placed under your sleeping bag will keep you several degrees warmer.

Warm up Batteries Before Use

In colder weather, batteries tend to not work as well. Try warming them up in your hands or sleeping bag before using them.  Sometimes what you think is a bad battery is really just a cold battery.

Start Fire Immediately  Cold weather Camping tips

Before you do anything else at the campsite, you should start a fire.  When it’s cold outside, you tend to get cold before you realize it and if you don’t already have a fire going, you will have to endure the freezing temps while waiting to get it started.  However, if you start a fire right away, you can take small breaks and warm up as you set up your camp.  Work smarter, not harder.

Fireproof OuterWear

Winter camping always requires a fire, so be sure that your outerwear/jackets are fireproof. Stray embers can ignite a jacket or piece of clothing and completely ruin your camping trip. Wool is a great fabric to use.

Winter Cap

30% of your body heat escapes through your head, so while camping in the winter, you will want to cover your head with a good quality winter cap.  This will ultimately keep you warmer and keep more of your body heat in.

Extra Hats and Gloves

It’s always a good idea to have a few extra necessities.  This includes gloves and hats.  When it’s cold outside, and you are cooking or fishing or playing in the snow, hats and gloves can become wet.  Having an extra pair will keep you warm while you wait for the wet ones to dry out.

Use Vaseline

Vaseline is a great way to keep your exposed skin protected.  Here in Texas, there are only a few places that get that extreme, but it’s still a great trick. Simply rub vaseline on exposed skin like the ears, nose and hands.  This will protect against windburn and frostbite.

Bring Extra Fuel for Cooking

Whether you are camping in summer or camping in winter, it’s ALWAYS a good idea to bring a little extra fuel for cooking.  But in winter, cooking times actually take longer because of the cold weather.  Having extra fuel will ensure that you can cook every single meal you have planned.

Use Wooden or Plastic Utensils/Not Metal

Metal cooking utensils will actually make your food cooler and thus increase the cooking time.  Not to mention the fact that metal gets cold to the touch and is super unpleasant when you are trying to keep warm.  Try using wooden or plastic as much as possible.

Clothes in Sleeping Bag

When you retire for the night, place your clothes for the next day in your sleeping bag with you.  This will keep them toasty warm and will make it easier to get ready for the next day.  There is nothing worse than waking up and having to put on freezing cold clothes.  Make it easy on yourself.

Hot Water Bottle

Heat up water and put it in a heat-proof water bottle or in a traditional water bottle.  Place this in the sleeping bag with you to stay warm while you sleep.  It worked in the old days before electricity or heated homes, so it’ll work for you.

Stay Dry

The best tip for camping in cold weather is to stay dry.  The minute you get wet, you are in a world of hurt.  Choose waterproof clothing and moisture wicking fabric.  If you start to sweat, change out your clothes for dry ones as soon as possible, especially before going to bed.

Increase Calories

It is suggested that you consume at least 4,500 calories for winter backpacking. So even if you are simply camping (not hiking or backpacking) you will want to increase your calories.  This will help you keep warm.

Get Moving

During the day, go for a walk around the campgrounds or do more chores around camp in order to stay warm.  The more you move, the more you will warm up.

Before going to sleep for the night, try doing jumping Cold Weather Camping Tipsjacks, jogging in place, or a few pushups to warm up a bit.  Just make sure you don’t start sweating, which could lead to wet clothes and ultimately make you colder.

Final Thoughts

Camping in the winter can be a great experience if you are prepared and know how to stay warm and dry. Take the time to pack extra clothes, gloves, and fuel.  When you are comfortable, you will enjoy the scenery and beauty that nature has to offer in the winter.

Comment down below if you have other tips or tricks that have helped you make the most of camping in colder weather.


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Camp Corn Chowder

Small onion, dicedCamp Corn Chowder
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1 can cream of tomato soup
1 can full of milk (can use powdered milk)
1 can cream style corn

Saute diced onion in oil until tender, gradually stirring in curry powder. Stir in soup, milk and corn. Cover and cook over very low heat until the soup is heated through.

Optional Toppings:

Diced Tomato
Sliced Avocado

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