What did you do to prep this week?

Before we start today, I would like to send out a BIG thank you to Kelli M, Angela M, Vanessa M, and Peter W for their generous donations via PayPal this week. Thank you all so very much for your help and support in keeping TheSurvivalistBlog.net running – it is greatly appreciated. If you wish to make a donation you can do so by clicking this link.

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Okay, let me see… what did I do to prep this week? Unfortunately, not a lot…

This week I spent most of my time and resources getting my truck worked on and repaired. Toyota trucks are some of the most reliable vehicles on the road, and mine has over 230,000 miles but like everything else parts do wear out, and need to be repaired. New brakes, valve pan gaskets, new hoses, front and rear differential fluid change, oil change and I’m out nearly $400 bucks.

But the old Toyota is my main form of transportation and hauls a lot of stuff, from hay, to building materials, and would serve as my “bug out vehicle” if needed, but I don’t plan on going anywhere, and the only way, that I’m leaving here is in a body bag – I’m making my stand here… no retreat, no surrender.

Besides the repairs and maintenance to my truck, I did the normal stuff around my place, i.e. gardening and yard work. I also ordered a copy of Ragnar Bensons new book Survival End Game for review. Ragnar has to be at least 90 years old, and to be honest I thought that he had stopped writing, then bam another book…

Well that’s it for me… How about you? What did you do to prep this week? Let us know in the comments below…

About M.D. Creekmore

M.D. Creekmore is the owner and editor of TheSurvivalistBlog.net. He is the author of four prepper related books and is regarded as one of the nations top survival and emergency preparedness experts. Read more about him here.


  1. Been at the hospital all week. My main prep is having a companion to travel through life with and it looks like that is going to happen. The surgery went well for my wife and we found out yesterday that the cancer did not get into her lymph nodes and the doctor said get well,heal up,and get on with life. Praise GOD! Thank you all for your prayers and positive thoughts. Brad

    • Bctruck,

      That is great news. Praise God.

    • Great news! Will keep you and your family in our prayers.

    • Rider of Rohan says:

      Prayers worked and thank the Lord for that piece of great news, Bctruck. Made my day. You tell your wife to get well soon so she can keep you on the straight and narrow. lol.

    • That is wonderful news.

    • As my grandma used to say, thank you Jesus!

      Give your girl a li’l hug from us, BC.

    • Glad it all worked out, the power of prayer is strong! She has a long road to recovery but w/you by her side to share it you’ll both get through!

    • FreeRangePagan says:

      That’s so great to hear, Bctruck.

    • JP in MT says:

      Praise God for your wife’s condiltion. I would not like to contemplate what my mental state would be like if I were going through what you did.

      Please pass on to her my congratulations and prayers for a fast and full recovery!

    • BC,
      Great news. Keep us updated, but more importantly, try and get some rest. You’re no good to your DW if you also end up sick.

    • S'wt Tater says:

      We are so Thankful !
      Take care of yourself and DW, recovery will take some time, especially to get her stamina up to normal.
      Keep her on the deep breathing exercises, the better we breathe, the easier it is to live our lives to the fullest.
      We will keep you and yours in prayer, ..It is the most beautiful thing that God in His infinite wisdom knows all our needs…so my knowing the Packs needs is not important, just that I do my part in prayers for those that need.

    • Mystery Guest says:


    • Bctruck;
      That is wonderful news have been reading and waiting for your report on your dw’s surgery and condition. Blessing come to those who need them, an you and dw needed them. Give her a hug from our family to yours.

    • Bc, wonderful news! I am so happy for your wife and you!

      • worrisome says:

        BC, so happy for the both of you! There is no scarier or more helpless feeling than to not be able to do anything for someone you care so much for. I am glad it is working out!

      • tommy2rs says:

        Good news indeed.

        • SCPrepperPoppa says:

          Super news brad! Indeed, Praise the Lord!

          • Lauri no e says:


          • Rider of Rohan says:

            SCPrepperPoppa, where were you last week?

            • SCPrepperPoppa says:

              Hey Rider!
              Wow, thanks for noticing my lack of participation last week!
              On road Saturday, then Dads day Sunday, DW in MN for confernce. We are well, I gather you are doing well by your lonesome with family in FL judging from your post. I was in the same boat brother!
              We are well down here, just busy as you too. I will try and post later as to what little I get done prepping last week
              Take care my friend! It would be nice to meet you and others sometime.

              • Rider of Rohan says:

                Glad you were ok and just didn’t have time to check in. I remember you talking about your wife going to a conference, glad she made it back safely. Yep, a mixer for the Pack with BBQ and fixings at MD’s place would be swell. Hear that, MD? j/k

                • SCPrepperPoppa says:

                  That’s a good idea brother! You bring some TX style “cue” and I’ll bring some good ole SC bbq. It’s ALL yummy! Heck, I just like to eat and fellowship!
                  Have a good week Rider!

      • worrisome says:

        Hi all. Would you please say a prayer for family friends that had to flee South Fork, Co yesterday from the fire burning their way? It was truly a SHTF situation for them. They left with all that they could get in a pick up truck and an SUV. Left behind a business and home. They are fine and now in Durango in a hotel. We have their back and will do anything to help them, including paying the credit card for the hotel stay. Mutual aid is apparently going to make a stand at the town if needed and are standing by, so prayers to them for strength as well?

        I didn’t go up to the BOL as planned. My daughter stopped by though and I sent all the food I had prepared for them up with her. They have either gotten done or are almost done with the things they didn’t want labor to see them do. Generally speaking: steel panels in strategic places; several storage caches; the safe in the cellar with a wall in front of it with a book shelf hung on it; some hidden places in walls for weapons storage, etc. The sons in law are going to stay up there another week to finish things off.

        I have been tending my garden and my neighbor’s as he is up there helping out as well. Also watered and did some weeding at the old couple’s across the street. I took them over dinner last night as I was in the mood for a cheesy chicken salad recipe and I had a bunch of fresh pees to throw in it. My reward for that was they kept me in wonderful home made tea all week. They are a treasure those two. There are deer scoping out the gardens, but so far, they have not made it through any of our fences.

        I started the curtains for the bunkhouse, canned up all that strawberry vinaigrette, placed my order at the store for canned goods. And ordered up a lot of books people made recommendations on this week.

        I have about 1/2 a truck load of stuff to haul up to the bol tomorrow and will come back sometime Monday.

        Thanks again to all of you that stood up for me with the crazy guy on the blog. You can’t know how much it meant to me to read the kind words. And thanks to all who came up with all the recipe books on cooking on a woodstove, my family is going to be thanking you for it 🙂

        Again, glad to hear BC and Charli are going to make it through the tough times together. Good to see Mental Matt pop up, I had been wondering about how he was getting along there in Detroit. Prays to everyone…………have a good week everyone.

        • worrisome says:

          I had some trouble posting this……..thought I was in the main part of the blog…………apparently it wasn’t…

        • worrisome;
          On your friends who fled the fire in S/fork Co, I am wishing them the best on this. Not a place to be in mentally or physically, but I send them my best for a good out come.

          If you are in contact with them, have them save “every receipt” for their being out of their home(I assume they have HOI), it will fall under their additional living expense on their insurance coverage. Gasoline, food, hotel expenses, water for drinking, clothing if they need it will come under another category. Have them keep copies of every receipt and note on them what it was for. Records can be lost in the mail or misplaced, and in a trying time copies are a peace of mind for those who will need to be reimbursed by their carrier.

          • JeffintheWest says:

            Double amen to what Becky said. If they can keep really good records, they can prevent a lot of unnecessary expense that should be reimbursed by their insurance.

          • worrisome says:

            Becky I was just talking to them and will call them back and remind them. They aren’t getting much info at the moment. Trying to just take it as it comes………….

            • worrisome;
              I know what they are going though, the “not knowing is the hardest part”. The media does a brown out, they give just enough news to keep people interested. Keep us posted–ok.

              • worrisome says:

                Well, Becky from what you have said, you have very personal experience at that…sorry anyone ever has to have hard times.

          • worrisome says:

            Becky, just heard from them, so far they are ok…just waiting it out. Still in Durango, kids are using the pool, mamma is shopping………….:)

            • That is a good sign……
              I know that I am not the only one who has gone through this(fire loss). I am not only speaking of experience for the loss. Years ago I worked for independent insurance companies as a CSR(before you had to be licensed). That is why the reminder of what they could/can expect from their insurance company.

        • Lantana says:

          More prayers for your friends, worrisome–glad to hear that they’re out of harm’s way, but no doubt the uncertainty is weighing heavily on them.

          Prayers also for South Fork’s protection, and for the safety of those on the ready to defend her.

          Safe travels this week. BTW, if your family ever decides to auction off the opportunity to be adopted into the clan, sure would like a chance to bid on a couple of slots.

          • worrisome says:

            Lantana, funny that you mention that……….we are going to be having a discussion on something very similar to that over the next few weeks 🙂

            • Rider of Rohan says:

              worrisome, said a quick prayer for your friends. Sounds like all is progressing well with the BOL, looks like you may be wrapping up the building part. I like the way yall were thinking on storing firearms, etc. I believe you might have Rawles beat. lol Keep up the good work, and watch out for the trolls, they are still here and likely lurking, too. Hahaha, but we have some troll crushing medicine if they hang around here. It’s called the truth, something they know nothing about.

            • Lantana says:

              Dude! Will you accept payment in pre-1982 pennies?

        • mountain lady says:

          So sorry I was not there when you were attacked. This is the first time I have been able to get on here in days. I had to switch to a different browser, and even the typing is close to normal, not like typing on jello.

          So good to hear that the BOL is really coming along. You should get yourself set up now, so you have what you need there, just in case. Yes, I am a little jittery again, but it could just be the “super moon”. I am keeping a eye on a few things. I read somewhere that if they call a bank holiday, or pull the internet, you have about 72 hours or so to get out before Marshal Law. I guess that is enough doom and gloom for one post, lol.

          • worrisome says:

            Mountain lady, sorry your system is slowing down your access but glad you are making the effort to stay tuned! I had to work the day some weasel was making crazy statements but the pack here took pretty good care of things…

            Jittery has become a way of life hasn’t it? All we can do is the best we can every day and in every way. The moon was right outside my window for most of the night last nite..’twas lovely to see.

            We are fastly working on getting all things up the hill that would be needful. I could manage there already, but it would be difficult. We need to get things finished up over this summer.

            Did you hear? That some if not all cell phones now have programming on them where the President can make a nationwide call to your cell and you will have to hear the message as the cell will not turn off until message is over? Can anyone confirm this?

            • mountain lady says:

              I did hear about the cell phones. I only have a landline, so guess they will have to do reverse 911, like they do for fire evacuations. The moon was beautiful last night. I often sit on my balcony and watch the moonrise.

              You are right about jittery now being a way of life. Keep on prepping.

            • worrisome & mtn lady;
              First I have heard of it, will ask dh as he listens to the news all the time. It does not surprise me with what is going on in the so call Senate and Congress, they are to busy making sure they get their extra while the rest of the nation takes it in the back side.. geezz

            • S'wt Tater says:

              Maybe I should be thankful we have difficulty hearing on the cell phone, at least part of the time.

            • JeffintheWest says:

              There was an article on the “presidential message” thing somewhere, though off-hand I can’t remember where. It’s a proposed ATT app, I think, but I may have that wrong.

              • Not an app and not proposed. All AT&T iPhones received an update over the last week or so. It included “Government Alerts” – Amber Alerts and Emergency Alerts. Both of those can be turned off. It includes Presidential alerts that can not be turned off. The Amber Alert sounded around 2am Sunday morning. I have since turned that feature off.

                From the AT&T website –

                “If you have a WEA capable device, you are automatically enrolled to receive Wireless Emergency Alerts. Based on FEMA guidelines, you may opt out of the following types of alerts:

                Alerts involving imminent threats to life or property issued by the National Weather Service or other authorized emergency management agency
                Amber Alerts (missing child alerts)

                You cannot opt out of Presidential Alerts.

                To opt out of receiving Wireless Emergency Alerts, update the specific settings for your device. Please check your device manual for instructions.”

                • Oh – I also didn’t know what it was until the next day. When I picked up my phone (from a sound sleep), I didn’t look at the screen. I just swiped it and entered my passcode. My goal was to get it to shut up. No message was showing when my phone opened so I had no idea what the alert was for until the next day. They are going to have to make some improvements in order for people to know what kind of alert was made and what the details are.

        • Worrisome, will send prayers for your friends.

        • Worrisome,
          I am glad your friends made it safe to Durango.
          Most of Wolf Creek has millions and millions of beetle killed pines, I drove over it again last month. While it is nature cleanser, it is terrifiying for humans. We went through it last year and may do it again this year.
          If Wolf Creek goes, there is nothing to stop it from taking out Pagosa Springs either.

          • worrisome says:

            Mama J, there were many forest folks on local radio there I understand kind of cursing the fact that they used to never have these kinds of fires because logging was allowed to cull the forests. Now, the beetles get in and as a result, wood is wasted and forests burn………….Sad to hear and sad to see. I went through that area way back in the 70’s ………..’twas absolutely beautiful then.

            They are still in Durango and as of this morning were told it would probably be another 4-5 days before they would be allowed back in.

            • I have sat in on some interesting heated (almost knock down drag outs) discussions with the US Forest Service over preservation vs. conservation.
              Looks like preservation won and now it will be devastating.
              It is long past time for logging. The forest is destroyed, the lumber punky and unusable.To be honest fire would be the best way to rejuvenate it.

              It is truly is awful to behold. A fire would give it a head start at regrowth, but it will never look like it did when you saw it last. Not in our life time.
              If it burns I will no longer traveling over Wolf Creek as my normal route. The avalanches and mud slides will be horrific.
              The end of this part of the world as we know it.
              I am in constant prayer for those who have homes in its path. I pray for rain most of all.

              • worrisome says:

                Very sad to hear Mama J. Some of the great “experiment” to “save the forests” are proving to have been so wrong! Thanks for the update.

          • Mama J;
            Wow, I did not realize that they fire was headed to one of the areas we loved so much. Dh and I looked at buying in Pagosa Springs in 2000, loved Wolf Creek Pass with the cattle/horse ranches there. That would just break my heart it is such a beautiful area.
            It is raining in N.CA, so let us hope that some of this rain gets that area to help put the fire down for all involved.

            • Thank you for sharing your moisture! I am with you on loving Pagosa.
              You would not recognize it now on the pass. The trees are 80% dead. Very sad. The beetle kill hasn’t made it down into the valley yet.

    • BC, Such awesome news….so glad to hear it. God bless you both.

    • BC, absolutely , super fantastic awesome. Glad to hear every thing is fine. Hope you both sleep well now and get some much needed rest I am sure.

    • Sheri (IN) says:

      Awesome news Brad! I’ve been thinking about you and the Mrs. all week. The small things we worry about daily pale in comparison when it comes to a loved one’s life. I’d worry about not having a job and then I would think about your wife and be grateful that’s ALL I had to worry about. Doesn’t even come close to what you both are going through. Give Charly a super big hug and know that your prayers have been answered 😀

      Continued Blessings!

    • That’s great news, Bc. I hope you can get a little rest yourself, now. Take care.

    • K. Fields says:

      Great news! I’m sure every day from now on will be even sweeter for the 2 of you to share.

    • JeffintheWest says:

      YAY! Congratulations BC and Charley!

    • Praise the Lord prayers have been answered!

    • Prepper in AZ says:

      I don’t comment often any more but this news is worthy. Hope she heals quickly and no more issues. Please give the dear wife regards from the pack.

    • Southern Blonde says:

      BC–I am so happy for you and your wife. I have been so worried all week, and I am now joyful that she is going to be ok.

      God bless you and your family,


    • t42n24t2 says:

      God is great! Congrats on the wonderful news.

    • mountain lady says:

      Wonderful news. Will continue to offer up prayers for both of you.

    • LyndaKay says:

      Wonderful news!!

    • Kin_of_Sgt. Alvin C. York says:

      “Praise God!” Brother Brad.

      My wife got breast cancer a few years ago; it didn’t look good.

      BUT–fervent and sincere prayer and a few darn good surgeons, radiologists, and oncologists (all Christians who also prayed with us) turned tragedy into a second chance at life. We thank HIM every day of our lives.

    • Something very similar happened to my dad last year. The cancer didn’t spread to his lymph nodes and he recovered very quickly.

      Glad to hear you and your wife are doing well and have received the best news after a scare.

    • midnight1st says:

      I’m so glad for you and your wife. Prayers really do work. Take care of the both of you.

      Also, I watched your video of the snake and have an idea for you. Several years ago I heard a talk by an ag expert, and he said that netting was the best thing to use against snakes. Well, I didn’t think that made a lot of sense, but this year I put netting over my strawberry raised bed to deter the birds, etc., and last week I caught two snakes in it. They get caught in it and can’t get out. Maybe you could just put some around the girls pen at the bottom and see what happens. Just a thought!

    • Suedaprepperlady says:

      What wonderful news!!! Our God is an awesome God 🙂

    • Tracker says:

      Great news BC. Glad she is doing well. By the way, how are your burns healing? Had a bad case of flash burns myself years ago. Made growing my beard back a long process.. All my best to you and yours.

    • Jersey Drifter says:

      Great to hear the good news. Prayers are a powerful thing, and with all the prayers from the Pack they sure do add up, and get the Good Lords attention. Thanks for keeping us posted. And the prayers are still going out to get her on the mend.

    • "Big Jim" says:

      Wonderful news BC , for believing in God and giving him Praise all things are possible !

    • axelsteve says:

      That is great news Brad!!!

    • Fantastic news! May she have a speedy recovery.

    • So glad to hear! Will continue prayers for your wife and you!

    • Millie in KY says:

      Praise God and I’ll keep praying! Oh, this makes me so very happy! Give her a hug from all of us!

    • Repair Mama says:

      This is wonderful news! Thank you God!!
      Love her and thank the Lord for your partner in life to be able to share it with you for a much longer time!

      Thanks for letting all of us know that she is healed!

    • Wonderful news…hope your wife has a quick recovery.

    • Doris Jones says:

      That is wonderful news. We are so glad for both of you.
      And thankful to the Lord for this blessing.

    • Excellent news! Glad to hear all is well.

    • Great to hear about prayers answered in such a positive way!

  2. Rider of Rohan says:

    This week the prepping juices finally got going in earnest. One of the local sporting goods shops started handling Mountain House and I bought 4 large buckets.
    And while I was looking around the store, a large shipment came in and I scored big time on some hard-to-get, almost impossible to get items. At the regular price, not the inflated prices one sees elsewhere. Yay!
    For the first time since December I’ll be heading out to the local range to hone up the skills. Should be a fun day.
    Since the DW and DD were gone this week, I took part in a little experiment, and tried to eat as inexpensively as possible. To sum it up, I’ve spent $35.05 to eat and drink this week, including eating out three times. I think that was pretty good, and had I made beans, rice, or pasta and not eaten out I could have cut costs even more. It was still fun and educational. Have a great week prepping, Pack.

    • axelsteve says:

      Rider of Rohan. Good news about the freeze dried and the ammo. For the past couple of years ,we would go shooting but shoot less ammo. Last weekend I shot about 100 rounds of 22lr.& rounds of 45 auto. My son asked me if I wanted to shoot his mosin and I said no.I let him use the mosin it is a model 44 . I let him take the recoil. I bet that there was allot of deaf ruskies after ww2 from that thing.

      • Leonard M. Urban says:

        Some of the model 44’s have headspace problems–they were rebarreled (with excellent Sako barrels), but assembled for export in recent years with bolts that don’t always headspace correctly with the replacement barrels, and should be checked if recoil or muzzle blast seems out of line…

        • axelsteve says:

          Leonard. Thank you for the advice. I will forward it to my son. It is his rifle.

    • J. Roy Pedersen says:

      I finally built a first aid kit for my Jeep. Nothing too fancy, but it felt good to get it done.

      My employer has been cutting staff and rumor is I may be next. My casual search for a better job just became less casual.

      I am waiting to hear if the bank has accepted the offer on the short sale on the house. If yes we can get out of Tampa and back to Oregon where we have land and family. I loved my stay here the past 18 years but it hasn’t felt like home since I woke up to the state of the world this January.

      I usually just lurk and read your comments. This site provides a great service to those who need it.

      Good luck and Godspeed all,

      J. Roy

      • May the job issues and housing issues turn out for the best. It sounds like a short sale approval along with a job transfer back to Oregon would be the ideal solution.

    • Schametti says:

      Ooh yay, I’m jealous, RoR! I’ve been wanting to get a couple more buckets of mountain house food. You don’t get AS MUCH in them as some other brands, but the food is sooo yummy, ironically enough. I have enough room for.. maaaybe three more buckets in my prepper pantry. Hopefully, one day. 🙂 Congrats on getting the ammo too, it was your lucky day!

  3. Purchased some food grade buckets so I can put up some more sugar – the local bulk store is running a sale on 50 lb. bags of sugar, so I want to stock up a bit.
    Ordered three new books – one on emergency surgery, one on basic prepping, and one on something else.
    Got rained out on the weekend’s plans of gardening so worked on cleaning up the basement and storeroom. I can tell I’ve put THAT task off a bit too long… blech!
    Got the books I ordered. Also ordered a Goal Zero charger for our various phones, etc. Will need to test it out and see how well it works.
    Bought canned goods mostly for the stash. At this point, we’re mainly replacing things we’re using, although I am building up spices and bulk goods also.
    Pulled radishes. Watched my peas look like they are about to be ready for harvest. Planted more radishes. Ordered some new radish seeds to try out.
    Am going to get the last of the garden planted today. Luckiy, I started squash seedlings about three weeks ago, because it looked like the water was going to keep coming, so I’m not THAT far behind, but I will admit that the rest of the garden is going to be dry beans, since they are forgiving of late starts. This rain is like … too much. I jokingly asked the hubby if we should start on an ark… I’m not so sure I really should have been joking!
    Got up REAL early this morning and picked up hay for the herd. Square bales to tide us over until the round bales can be done. Love the rain, did I mention that?
    Lots of weeding and junk. Garden time fun!

  4. MentalMatt says:

    Not to much this week keeping my head down figuring how bad the emergency financial manager of my third world country of a city I work for is gonna take from me. I’m watching the metals market Gerald Celente, to whom I also follow believes gold is near the basement, and so is silver. Really thinking about hitting up the rainy day fund and buying a little more, who knows. Been awhile pack, busy days and crazy life, didn’t forget about you guys thought……..

    • Always try to say a little prayer for you whenever Detroit is in the news, Matt–I imagine a lot of other folks here do too. Hang in there!

      • axelsteve says:

        Unfortunatlly More bancruptcies are in the works. I think Stockton Calif files a while ago.If that immigration bill passes it will only get better with millions and millions of new soscoal services will be sucked up like government chese.

    • riverrider says:

      good to hear from you. keep your head down. detriot going bankrupt gonna affect you any?

      • MentalMatt says:

        Yeah more than likely, pay cuts, pension cuts for retirees and futer retirees (me), you name we are gonna get it.

    • MentalMatt,
      I don’t know about the gold; however, with Silver hovering around $20, my understanding is that, that price is near the actual cost of production, soI dont’ see how it can get much lower.

    • Rider of Rohan says:

      Been missing you around here, Matt, but have thought about you many times when hearing news of the financial woes of your once great city. What a shame….unfortunately, it is the future of the entire country if we let the same people who ran Detroit in the ground stay in power in Washington, D.C.
      Stay safe, brother.

    • Matt, thanks for checking in…We start to worry when we don’t hear from you. May God keep you strong and safe as you protect and serve.

    • K. Fields says:

      Matt –
      Glad to hear you’re still safe. Is there any way you could “retire” early and get your money pulled out before it all gets lost in bankruptcy proceedings?

  5. MentalMatt says:

    Oh and my horrible manners BC I’m so glad for your news God Bless you both..

  6. Survivalista says:

    Finally got my order of can organizers and went to town putting them together so I can finally have a well-organized and easily rotateable stockpile of canned goods.

    Also bought some gold and silver, buy in the dips!

  7. Portman90201 says:

    OuhRah BC. be there for Mamma San… She gets a pass on about anything she bloody well doesn’t wanna do right!

  8. Rodger Ramjet says:

    Well, here in the land Down Under my wife and I looked at some property. A 5 acre parcel with a small house, fully fenced with a nice chicken coop. It has lots of potential. With the year round growing season, I can grow everything, including tropical fruits. I can taste those mangoes, papayas, and bananas right now.

    • Hi Rodger, Are the mango and papaya trees already there, or do you get to choose them yourselves?

      We have two old mango trees, one Chinese, one Hayden. The Chinese mango produces big crops, but the Hayden, which produces even better mangoes, is old and has structural issues which seem to be inhibiting production. Haydens are a fabulous variety, tho, if they are available you might consider one.

      Any thoughts about papaya varieties? We get so many diseases here that the commercial growers have mostly gone to GM varieties in order to stay in business. Otherwise the trees die off in a year or two to some new dread disease.

      I have planted a number of varieties, and some get old enough to bear a few papayas then they stop producing new leaves, the old ones fall off, and the roots or lower trunk rots.

      I took one out yesterday which was about three years old, had stopped producing leaves, and had produced maybe 6 papaya total. When I chopped it with a machete about a foot above the ground, the trunk was rotted and mushy about 1/3 of the way through.

      I don’t despise GM the way many people do, and I’m having trouble figuring out what to do without them if we want papayas.

      • Lantana says:

        Tom, are papayas native to your area or were they introduced?

        • Hi Lantana, We are in Hawaii. Papaya were introduced, as were the diseases which kill them. Papayas were originally from Central America and Mexico, brought here in the 1800s. Papaya Ring Spot Virus was killing off the crops so fast that when the transgenic SunUp and Rainbow varieties were introduced, they took over. Now almost all commercial papaya produced here are transgenic.

          • Lantana says:

            Thought your situation sounded like Hawaii, Tom.

            If the papayas AND their diseases were introduced, wonder what it is in the Mexican/Central American environment that keeps the diseases in check?

            • Good question. I expect the papaya growers and state agronomy people have looked into that without much luck. I’m not sure when the Ringspot first appeared or where. It may be a recent development.

              Of course, in the wild it might exist without terribly widespread consequences, but when there are huge groves it spreads quite easily. A lot like human diseases: if the population is small enough, and spread out enough, there isn’t a big enough reservoir to maintain the disease and it dies out.

          • There is GMO papaya grown in Hawaii. Not sure if it’s harmful the way corn seems to be.

      • Rodger Ramjet says:

        From what I understand, Australia has less problems with what you are describing than we do here. If permitted, try ordering seed from reputable Aussie companies. Here’s one:


        The problem with mangoes is that most of them are grafted plants. I don’t think you can order plants internationally.

        I will have to plant my own trees on the property, but there are some very fast growing varieties that will give me fruit in one year.

        I take a very low opinion of GM foods myself.

      • Have you tried growing malunggay (Moringa oleifrra) trees? They grow well in the tropics and subtropics and are fairly disease resistant, tough plants. You can cook the leaves like spinach, simmer the immature seed pods like green beans and cook the mature seeds like dried beans or roast them like nuts. The trees also help add nitrogen to the soil. In Hawaii these are common little backyard trees in Filipino neighborhoods and provide nutritious additions to stews.

    • Jersey Drifter says:

      I used to vacation in Jamaica. Fresh mangoes and papayas! You are so lucky. My goodness you just brought back some fond memories.

  9. axelsteve says:

    Sticking to the Pink Floyd regiment.I got a bit of food for later.I sold some car parts to help with a prep project that I am working on.Last night while running my dogs disapeared on me. Turned out that there is a graveyard next to the football field or I should say there is a football field next to the graveyard.Well anyway they wound up on the other side of the fence and got into the graveyard. It took a while for them to find a way back to the football field. I failed to have a flashlight in the car or on me. That will not happen again. Might watch zombieland and revue the rules of zombie defense.I never did trust Bill Mury.

    • Might be hard to stock pile Twinkies, but I hear a plant in Ga might get permission to start production on them this summer!

      • axelsteve says:

        Unless moochele shuts it down.

        • axelsteve says:

          I heard that she approved a enlargement of a grape drink plant though and the expanson of a menthal ciggeriate plant.

          • Oh good,,, cigarettes ,, much healthier than Twinkies (not)

          • I haven’t much cared for Kool-Aid since the days of Jim Jones. Maybe that’s why I didn’t vote for the one currently in office.

      • I have a box of Twinkies in my freezer!!!

        • S'wt Tater says:

          Don’t post your address- those things are addictive. You’d be sure to be robbed. LOL

          • Schametti says:

            You know.. I NEVER ate a single twinkie in my adult, and never really wanted one.. until I couldn’t have one. Now I want one. Isn’t that always the way it goes? :/ lol.

        • Rodger Ramjet says:

          You don’t need the freezer. Those things will stay fresh for the next five years.

  10. Leonard M. Urban says:

    Discovered a website that shows a very quick method of making parched corn from feed corn. Check it out:

  11. I have had the week from hell. I got back from visiting my folks and promptly got sick–some sort of viral infection, I suspect. It took me four days to get over it. And that was with taking the elderberry tincture. My dh woke up Wednesday with the same symptoms. He took elderberry tincture every other hour for a day. He woke up the next morning feeling absolutely fine.

    I did pick up a few things at the Commissary while I was up in Georgia. I bought six cases of corn, two cases of spaghetti sauce and 20 boxes of cereal. The rest was OTC medicine and first aid supplies.

    I did have a funny experience while in Georgia. This is just classic. My sister-in-law casually mentioned that her and my brother had decided to purchase a handgun. (Her parents were almost carjacked driving through Baltimore City. They were diverted from the highway through the city. When they came to a red light, 20 black men surrounded their SUV in an attempted carjacking. He had his trusty Glock in hand ready to shoot though the window when four police cars descended on the scene. The police didn’t even take a report; they just told her parents to leave. Funny–no news of black mob attacks elderly white couple but plenty of news of a “white Hispanic” attacking a black “boy”–I really wouldn’t consider a 17 year old, 180 lbs. and 6’2” to be a boy. But the media here in Florida are showing a photo of him from when he was 12; they won’t show a more updated photo because T looks like a gang banger–the grill, tats and gang symbols might sway the jury.)

    At any rate, my sister-in-law mentioned they wanted to get a gun but just didn’t know what kind to get. Within two minutes it was like a gun shop–my brother brought out more than a few pistols he had stored at my parents house (one was a bad ass python that I really want to shoot), my mom brought out her new Glock and my dad’s 45, and I pulled out my Glock.

    The look on her face was priceless.

    I had to do training at work this week–16 hours of hell. The seminar was on personal development. We spent hours doing affirmations. The entire philosophy rests on the assumption that saying “I am a good person” makes one a good person. The only thing that makes one a good person is to embody the values of Christ. I wanted to raise my hand and ask this: If three frogs are on a log, and two decide to jump off, how many frogs are left on the log? Answer: Three. Just saying crap and deciding crap doesn’t change anything. Okay. That’s enough ranting.

    • Winomega says:

      Bam Bam, I’m not sure what it’s called, I want to say positive reinforcement but it probably goes by another name.

      Anyway, the theory is that what you do and say can affect the mind to believe it.

      Spending the entire time thinking the whole process is BS is a great way to inoculate yourself against what they were trying to accomplish.

    • S'wt Tater says:

      Bam Bam,
      The best anti-viral I have used is Oregano oil. I bought a bottle of 100% oregano oil, and some bottles with droppers. I put 5 parts of olive oil to one part oregano oil.. to .use at first symptom of virus..
      I found a huge fever blister inside my upper lip, just before bed one night. I took three drops in a tablespoon of very warm coffee and went to bed. The blister in my mouth was almost flat by the next morning. I took another dose after I got up and by afternoon the blister was completely gone. I have a bottle of elderberry syrup. but haven’t used it yet. with me using the oregano regular for other problems…I am thinking I’ll get dual effects. It is easier to take than the garlic and doesn’t hurt my stomach. Tho DH says I smell like a pot of spaghetti! I did ask him if he’d prefer me use the garlic, he declined…with the statement…”not unless it is absolutely necessary.
      What would be the best extraction method for garlic? oil or tincture? ( to get the health benefits in a concentrate)

    • I had the day from hell at work yesterday also. Seems all the aholes came out and looked me up. Sure was hard to hold my tongue and patience . Must be full moon or the mental hospital closed down.

    • worrisome says:

      The rant is well taken in all honesty. Civil rights need to go both ways and candidly I am tired of them not happening that way. Glad your sister in law is getting smart!

      Sorry you were ill, one of my daughters had the crud this past week, she went all herbal to get over it…was well in 3. I have been copying and pasting a lot of what gets written her about herbals to her as she has a big interest and wants to “grow everything” that applies.

      The problem with affirmations is that the person doing them has got to want to do them and for very good person reasons. Group settings and because someone tells you that you must attend is not a positive setting imo…………just saying. To me that kind of seems like mind control……..??? just sayin. I think you were dead on in your summation.

    • K. Fields says:

      Geez BamBam, why all the negativity? Don’t you know that every day in every way you’re getting better and better?

      • Winomega says:

        K. Fields, is sarcasm tag?

        Yeah, I don’t know what I’m saying either…. Don’t know how to explain it either.

        Just… an awareness of inflection gets lost over the interwebs. I will attempt to explain further on request…. but it will be messy if you proceed.

      • Bam Bam says:

        LOL, K. Fields. I have to thank you for the heads up on magnesium deficiency. I researched the symptoms and every weird ailment I have (including insomnia and being sensitive to loud noises) was listed. At this very moment I am soaking my feet in a magnesium bath with tea tree oil and peppermint oil.

        • K. Fields says:

          BB – Another good way to get magnesium into your body transdermally is to have your husband give you a massage with magnesium oil just before you go to sleep. The oil is a bit expensive but you deserve to be pampered now and again.

          The tingling you’ll feel is normal by the way 😉

          • Bam Bam says:

            K. Fields,

            I bought a bottle of magnesium oil, and then I purchased some magnesium flakes to make my own magnesium oil–much cheaper.

            • K. Fields says:

              Good, but you do lose the purity doing that.
              The high heat required to turn the original oil into flakes causes chemical changes and produces some by-products. Mixing the flakes in a soak dilutes the by-products to insignificance but re-hydrating the flakes back into oil simply concentrates them.
              Not a big deal as most people will rinse off the home-made oil but if I were being massaged and the oil remaining on me overnight, I would prefer the original unaltered version.

    • Rider of Rohan says:

      You are in the same state of mind many of us are in, Bam Bam. We are reaching a point of enough is enough. Take care.

    • Lantana says:

      Bam Bam, good for you for resisting the urge to tell the trainers that they needed to expand their program to include that venerable Native American chant:

      O Wa Ta Goo Siam

      • Tracker says:

        Lantana, they might get confused and join that lost tribe , the Where da fugawes? Heh heh. Since I am half native american, I can tell that joke. And being over 60 yrs old I don’t have to care.

    • I share your pain about psychobabble training. The way to improve one’s own self-esteem is to accomplish something worthwhile that requires sustained effort and self-discipline while being respectful to others during the process. For example painting an elderly neighbor’s house for free during hot summer weather or shoveling her driveway when it’s 10 below. Now that’s a reason to feel good about yourself and confident in your abilites.

    • axelsteve says:

      Something like that happend to my friend while driving through San Fransisco several years ago. My friend had his dads ww2 gi 45 auto. He just pointed it into the face of the biggest guy and he almost deficated in his pants. Thugs pull out the race card. My friend would not have pulled out the 45 if they were behaving.

    • Bam Bam – I understand your frustration with the seminar. Unfortunately, there are a lot of good people out there that don’t believe it. They have bought into the negativity thrown at them while growing up that they begin to believe it and start negative self-talk. The only way to overcome the negativity is to work with positive affirmations and learn to recognize the good things they do, so that they can learn that they are good people. For people who don’t need it, it can be annoying but for those that do need it, a life may be saved.

  12. TN Mommy says:

    I ordered some prepping books from Amazon (homesteading, emergency medical stuff, etc), plus some magnesium firestarters and a hand crank radio. Trying to find a place locally where I can buy 5 gallon food buckets and some mylar bags. I have about 100 pounds of rice and beans that I need to store, but every website I find that sells the buckets, bags, and oxygen absorbers charges ridiculous shipping.

    Prepping has slowed down a bit because I realized I was spending too much money and it was starting to piss off the hubby…

    • S'wt Tater says:

      Try a bakery, those frosting buckets have a little headspace for ease of pouring, and hold just a little more
      …the big box stores usually have the buckets….inc L**** and W*****t, That tractor place usually has them also.. costs are comparable. Tractor place slightly more expensive.Check farm supply stores if you are in a dairy area. Be sure to get lids at same time as buckets, some vary a bit.
      .someone researched it last year, or the year before..I forgot who, and gave this info, on this site,… and found the ingredients in the food grade and the standard, new buckets are the same except for the dyes, and the dyes are non toxic.They just don’t have the food grade label.
      Have you put the grains, rice and beans thru the freezer for the five days…to kill larvae? You are looking at three buckets for a hundred pounds..of flour, or rice. Beans take a small amount more space.maybe closer to 28-lbs/5 gallon bucket. , much depends on the size of the beans. I place my excess.. in a half gallon jar, or a washed out wine bottle. The LDS warehouse sells oxygen absorbers,(5$ or close for a pack) with no shipping…They provide this service to those who prepare..and are not a regular “store”, but anyone can buy from them.
      You can also buy the” hot hands” from your hunting supply shelves.(they use up the oxygen in the buckets) activate at least, three for a five gallon can, place one down near bottom, fill to half, or a bit more.., put in another and then..another near the top. finish filling, quickly, seal securely.and use duck tape, about three or four bands around seal, for a wide secure band.

      • Lantana says:

        Sw’t Tater, IIRC, there’s a difference in the release agent used on the mold depending on whether it’s for food use or other use.

        TN Mommy, do you have Firehouse Subs stores out there? Here, they offer the 5 gal. FG buckets (no lids) their pickles come in for $2 each, and the money goes to their fund to support firefighters injured/killed in the line of duty.

        They need to be aired out in the sun for several weeks to lose the pickle smell, but if you can’t find free ones, they’re an option to keep in mind.

      • S’wt Tater,
        Something to keep in mind. I think the O2 absorbers from the LDS folks are only 100 CC and used in the #10 cans or the small Mylar bags they sell. A 5-6 gallon bucket requires a 2000 CC.

    • TN mommy;
      It has been awhile since I did a price comparison on mylar bags, I found for the assortment, size & price the company I use is USA Em**g**cy Pr*p**dnes*. I can buy one in one size and 8 in another and if you end up with XX amount they give a better rate. The bags l like the best are the one’s with a pleated bottom, easier to fill inside the buckets or plastic totes.

    • Restaurants and bakeries will often give buckets away. At worst you might have to clean them yourself.

    • midnight1st says:

      I have a great luck getting buckets from the bakery at my Walmart. I have been getting 8-10 at a time with the lids. They are glad for people to take them because they don’t have to walk all the way to the back of the store to throw them away. You do have to ask in the bakery and you have to tell them that you want the lids, too. They have the four gallon and the two gallon sizes. I figure that the two gallon sizes will make good totes for water later and they are good for small things. They might make good containers for charity later also.

    • If you live out West, you can get new 5 and 3 gallon food buckets, regular lids or gamma lids for them, 100 count packets of oxygen absorbers, 5 gallon water storage cubes and lid lifters at Winco, a chain of employee-owned grocery stores, and the prices are just slightly above wholesale (no membership required and they do not accept credit cards). Winco also has big barrels of all sorts of dry foods that are sold by the pound, similar to what you see in those fancy organic food stores, but at very reasonable prices (no I don’t own any stock in the company but I do like a bargain). Their house brand of frozen vegetables is cheaper than what Wal-Mart has, if you are into home-dehydrating and vacuum canning. The store nearest me is open 24 hrs, 7 days a week, so I can shop when most people are sleeping and have the store nearly to myself. If I pay cash, then I leave no record in anyone’s computer of what I personally bought — good to know if I’m feeling particularly paranoid.

      • Linda;
        Thanks I have to go there tomorrow to pickup a few things, I like the dairy gold milk & Tillamook yogurt. So I will look for the new additions to the store.

  13. riverrider says:

    nothin, nada, zip. all this rain, all i can do is try to stay caught up on the grass/weeds. cut grass, fix mower, cut grass, fix mower, repeat. river too high to canoe anyway. my guess is the rain will cut off soon and drought will ensue until october. sic semper tyrannis

    • Rider of Rohan says:

      riverrider, you’re probably right on the rain. Where I live we can’t count on consistent rain in July and August, never have been able to no matter what the climate change knuckleheads say. We always planted early to take advantage of a little cooler weather and abundant moisture. If we got significant rain in June we always made a good garden, and we always had greens in the fall garden that made well. We’ve been blessed with plenty of rain as well, and I’m not complaining since the area tanks and lakes have filled back up. Take care, brother.

    • K. Fields says:

      rr –
      A survivalist cutting their lawn? Common guy, get that grass replanted into some eatable landscaping – or at least fence it and put some livestock on it – that “yard” could grow you a nice Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner!
      But it sounds like you’re getting a lot of small engine mechanic experience, so that will probably come in handy 😉

      Re: rain – here on the west coast we’re expecting a rain band to come in tomorrow through Tuesday. That would be no news for most of the country, but here we normally don’t get rain this time of year – it’s going to play hell with my planting / harvesting schedule! And no doubt will mean more rain for folks further east.

      • JeffintheWest says:

        On the other hand, grass clippings are a necessary component for composting if you can’t find enough other “green” material for the job. Besides; what’s wrong with having some lawn to enjoy? If the SHTF, you can always plant it then…. Just because we’re preppers doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy the nice things in life too.

        • riverrider says:

          jeff, yeah but the problem is it grows where it wants to, not where i want it,lol. grows great in the driveway, not so good in the yard. it needs a good bit of lime/fertilizer but then i’d be cutting grass every day. usually by this time of year it has begun to dry up some and gets longer between cuttings. i tell the misses i’m going to turn some goats out it every week. (its already fenced).

          • JeffintheWest says:

            I hear you — it never ceased to amaze me, back when I was a typical suburbanite, that my driveway could grow a bumper crop of grass, while my lawn grew a bumper crop of weeds and thorns…. 😉

          • Hunker-Down says:

            Goats will mow the grass for free if its fenced. hehe

        • K. Fields says:

          Jeff, I’ve never been a big fan of compost piles – way too much work with all that watering and turning.

          • JeffintheWest says:

            I hear ya, though I also have to agree that if done properly, it’s a wonderful source of free fertilizer. Of course, I go for the thermophiliac version so I don’t have to deal with the smell, but that is even more work sometimes!

      • riverrider says:

        k, yeah i thunk about getting a cow or a few goats, but they become pets and you know that ends…them dieing of old age and me hungry:) i try to think of it as cleared fields of fire. i do plan on chix soon and next year plan to try gardening again.

        • K. Fields says:

          What a strange contrast, cleared fields of fire and livestock dying of old age … 😉

        • RR, Chickens are super fun, you should go for it!

        • S'wt Tater says:

          Name the pigs pork chops, or loin roast, or sausage.
          Name the cow,..hamburger. and . the goats- BBQ, or thanksgiving supper

          • Winomega says:

            S’wt Tater… I was watching Doomsday Preppers over non-sanctioned interwebs…. I love the guy who named his rabbits as an expanded scheme of me addressing every strange rabbit “Hassenpfeffer”

            I suppose I should start practicing Sunderbait for if I ever find a wild rooster on my property.

            (Not likely here, but my parents’ neighbors had a loose goat problem for a few weeks.)

    • That’s my guess, too. At least that seems to be the history here in southern half of NJ. I can’t remember the last time we had this much rain, at least twice every single week.

  14. FreeRangePagan says:

    Hello Pack,.

    What have i done to prep? Moved into the new job in the middle of the mountains for the summer, so I’m trying to keep everything light and ready to go at a moments notice. Placed all my food stuffs in two boxes in the kitchen for ease off packing, keeping my room organized and ready to go as well. It’s hard food shopping and not stocking up after a year of prepping, but I’m keeping it small.

    I’ve made some firestarter kits from toilet paper tubes and dryer lint, packed them in ziplocks with some matches and have one in my work pack and the other in the car. Mostly finished building a cheese press at work.

    I’ve packed flashlights in all of my bags, after several late days in the middle of the woods. Wow it’s dark out there.

    Bought a hand sythe from a garage sale.

    I think that’s all for now. Have a good week Pack.

  15. This has been the BEST week ever as far as preps go,,,,,and that is because my DH is finally on board w/prepping!! He surprised me with an order of books off the Internet (Power4Patriots) on building solar panels, and when I stopped hugging him and asked why he thought to buy them he answered “ya just never know what might happen”,,,,,which had always been my answer to him over the years!

    He also plans to clean out a closet we don’t use much, put shelves in and turn it into a pantry for all the food items I have in the shed. To add to that pantry, BiLo had canned veggies on sale 10/$5 so I picked up 30 and will get 30more on Monday. While I was shopping I did what I always do, bought 2 of sale items to put one (or some times both) away. Sugar was on sale, and I had a regular coupon and an e-coupon so I couldn’t not get it, when wewere unpacking groceries he commented “we have enough sugar now for a year” and I think that’s what promted the offer to build the pantry!

    Hate to over pay for ammo but hate to run low, so I placed an order for 22LR. We have a regular shooting range on the lower edge of our land, but the other night we were ‘rednecks’ shooting at the garden decorations with the 22,, it was just like being at the Disneyworld arcade! And just as safe since there is nothing for miles behind the area we were shooting into & all the dogs were on the porch!

    • JP in MT says:


      Congrats on having your spouse on-board! I have been fortunate to have mine with me since day-one. But I can understand, as if I were still married to my Ex….well things wouldn’t be going as well.

    • S'wt Tater says:

      Congrats!. It is so much easier with the DH on board!
      Mine thought I’d lost my marbles, when I started putting up flour,pasta, beans,rice and sugar..in 5 gallon cans.
      Then he asked how long they would keep, the way I was preparing them.He just needed to be re-assurred we weren’t going to throw it all away in 4 months.. I just look at it as insurance.

    • JP & S’wtT,
      Your right, having him on board is a weight lifted off my shoulders. Like yours, he also thought I lost my marbles, and although I never lied, I certainly never told him all I was doing

      Projects will go faster,, and be more fun, now that we will do them together. This just made my whole week!!

    • Yaaaay, R-Me, on having dh jump aboard.

      Are the stores switching over to 4# bags of sugar in your area?

  16. This has been a week and a weekend for decluttering and sorting. We purchased 5 new metal shelving units nearly two months ago, and we’re finally getting them setup and moveing all of the clutter to one place, in boxes, and on chelves. Having lived in this place for nearly 30 years it is amazing how much junk and junque one can accumulate.

    • LOL on the accumulation! I’ve been where I’m at for 22 years, and the amount of [email protected] is unbelievable. Good going with the new shelves.

    • We’ve only been in our house just over 10 years. I think we both moved into it with junk and junque. With any luck, I might be able to sell some of the junque or at least donate it so someone else can make it useful.

  17. JP in MT says:

    Hi Pacxk!

    Things went pretty well this week. God the safety bar for the BOV from the local guys ho built it, got it painted, and finally installed! It surely is a custom fit, as my oldest was here to help me put it in and we had to use a rubber hammer to finish seating it. Like she said “It will take 2 determined men to steal it off the truck!” I’m very pleased.

    My brand new 4-wheeler can with a factory installed broken winch. Got that in and replaced this week. Now we are looking at basket to extend the carrying capacity of the rear racks on both 4-wheelers. Finally found what we want. When they come in both will got to the steel fabricators (same guys as above) and have some model specific mounting brackets installed vs. the “universal” set that comes with it and bolts through the wire mesh.

    Picked up a variety of items on sale this week, along with some staples. I also found Gen 3 Mag-Pul AR 30 round mags at the store. Under $16 there and on-line for $14.20 w/free shipping. Still no more 22LR ammo on the shelves since the last batch a month ago. But other stuff is trickling in. I have most of the basic stuff but I’m still looking for 9mm 147gr HP for my carbine and 75-77 gr JHP 223 for my “stubby”.

    Resent the paperwork for my SBR again. This should be the last “correction”. We talked a little and headed off another return by correcting something else on the form. I’m getting to be an unpaid “expert” on these things.

    Got in some silver I ordered with an extra large paycheck at the 1st of the month. At <$20/oz., I hope I can order some more soon.

    Pkgs of cable ties, asst sizes: 3
    Tool bags, 15”: 2 (holds 1 pair of snow chains in each bag)
    Snatch block (BOV tool box)
    “Prepper” fiction books: 2
    Wired helmet headset for GMRS radios: 1

    Wide Mouth Canning Jars: 3
    Merck Manual, Home ed., 1999
    Encyclopedia of Common Diseases, 1962
    Proven Home Remedies…, 2000

    Panacake Mix: 10 lbs
    Spices, Onion Powder: 4
    Navy Beans: 8 lbs
    Sm. Red Beans: 7 lbs
    Bear Creek soup mix: 28

    Silver 1 oz Rounds: 4

    Firearm Related Equipment:
    Hogue grips for Ruger
    30 rnd, Mag-Pul G3 mag: 1
    Flip up low front sight

    ("Treasures" are from Thrift stores, garage and estate sales. 'Tis the season.)

    New prep item for me…I'm unplugging the cable and home phone. I found a device that will let me call and fax (on 1saleaday.com) (thanks Bam Bam, I'm going broke because you introduced me to the site 😉 ) and the fee runs $30/year versus $30/month. Plus I have only watched to news twice this week and nothing else. I like the "less-stress" environment, and since nothing much has changed this week (SSDD), I think things will work out just fine. I can increase my Internet speed and save $70/mo. Since I usually spend about $200-300 per month on additional supplies (not counting new items, this may allow me to pick up a few of the over 250 items on my Amazon with list!

    I've noticed a lot (mostly) of good comments on the questions people have on prepping. That's what I love about this "place", most everybody is willing to share what they've learned worked and didn't work. Thanks to everyone who contributes!

    • worrisome says:

      JP, I will be asking you about a month on how you are doing without the cable and phone? I am feeling like I am getting close to being able to let go. Perhaps after you have some time without it to give the pros and cons I will get braver.

      • worrisome;
        Many years ago(20+) we did without a phone, cable & power. We had walkie talkie’s we used to communicate with a neighbor. At first I thought we would go nuts not having the normal amenities of life, it is amazing how quickly you adapt to other media(radio’s). If we wanted tv (4 channels) we would have to fire up the generator. This is before cell phones were cost effective, and solar was some what efficient. You will adapt, then you will look back and wonder why you were so worried. I hope that if we had to due it again that I would adapt so easily as before. Hope this helped you with the up coming life change.

      • Winomega says:

        If I may intrude, Worrisome, but the internet solves my problems.

        The cable company has been only my source for internet for about four years. I’ve spent a little longer relying on cell phone for calling. The free faxing services I occasionally use are probably not preferable to going to a fax-capable print shop.

        Actually, both my cell phone and internet probably outstrip JP’s costs since that’s where we went “better than barebones” at hubby’s insistence.

      • JeffintheWest says:

        I will note we did the same thing when I was a kid in Ohio — went without TV for a year or two. The funny thing is that even as a kid, I got over it pretty quick (and you know how kids are about their favorite TV shows), and we had a LOT more time for more fun things outside with our friends, or even by ourselves. I suspect that not knowing who the latest “star” on American Idol is will not be a major show-stopper for you guys! Enjoy the silence! 😉

      • JP in MT says:


        You got it. I have a couple of people from church that have ditched the cable and sat TV, are using cell phones instead of land line (we currently have both) so will probably shut the cable down on Monday as we have VBS, a gun show, then out in the woods for a week so no usage for 2 weeks.

        (The silence is a little creapy so far, but with watching old TV series on Netflix, it’s like a moved back 20 years!)

    • patientmomma says:

      I will be transitioning to my BOL in a few months and I’m trying to get set up with communication gear. My BOL is not close to anything; closest gas station is 15 minutes if the weather is good. Only internet is by satellite. I gave up cable in the city a long time ago and I don’t miss it, but I do like to know what is going on in outside world occasionally. Has anyone got a recommendation on shortwave radio and FRS walkie talkies?

      • patientmomma;
        Have you looked at a company called CCrane? We purchased a radio that is AM/FM/Weather, it is wind up, solar, electrical plug or battery(Solar Observer). Now the company has other options for shortwave, you can find the company on line. They are some of the nicest people to talk to, so if you can not find what you want call and ask. Our other short wave we purchased in 2005 from Radio shack, I do not recall the name.

    • JP,

      I know. 1SaleaDay is terrible. I am addicted. My dh bought me the ice cream maker they have–oh my. I don’t buy ice cream at the store anymore.

    • Do you have a phone landline connection and a princess phone? I ask because a landline has its own power independent of the electrical grid and the princess phone (from Radio Shack) will work just connected to the landline even when the electrical grid is down. This old fashioned phone connection can be a lifesaver when the cell phone towers are overloaded and the internet is down and those MagicJack type connections aren’t working.

  18. Trained a friend of mine on how to build himself a basic stockpile of supplies.

    Asked for my bosses (you know… the Chinese who own the place where I work) to start looking for pre-65 US and pre-67 CAD silver coins for me.

    In a month and a half, I’ve found 4 quarters and two dimes. Nothing impressive, but I’ve spread the word around that I was a collector (LOL! I don’t care about numismatism) and that I was buying.

    • S'wt Tater says:

      That’s a pretty good week! (Having friends who have some degree of preparedness)..When others are awake, they begin to see what it takes, and that they can’t just pop in- when things get tough…and if they do turn up with needs, at least they are able to bring something to the table.

      • Most of my friends are AT LEAST a minimum aware. They know there is a writing on the wall, but fail to read it yet. I love them very much for that good sense.

    • NotAHusker says:

      In my many years in the restaurant industry I have found lots of silver and copper. Its amazing how much silver and copper is still circulating, and it’s great how coworkers and management will still help out the kid or old guy that collects coins.

      • axelsteve says:

        I knew a waitress who used to get those susan b anthony coins in her tip. People thought that they were just quarters. She liked those,getting a dollar instead of a quarter in change !

  19. Winomega says:

    I decided that six Fresh and Go toothbrushes wasn’t too many to order; I used to have one and they are convenient for travel. I also bought a few other odds and ends, more than half from the medical aisle. (Gloves, band aides, a couple tubes of ointment.) Btw, I didn’t buy any, but what is colloidal oatmeal?

    Budget is starting to feel tight, so gotta slow down.

    I read an interesting article about how certain health diets need to pay attention in order to get enough salt. It’s something to think about once the supplies run out and you’re eating like it’s 1939.

    My garden is depressing. My backyard weeds taste better than the lettuce, and everything else is not showing signs of being ready to produce fruit. Well, it’s hard to tell with potatoes, I just know they’re alive. This fall, I’m hoping to rip the entire thing out and re-do it. Hopefully a good material to do it with will go on sale.

    I also started a major overhaul project on the storage.

    • S'wt Tater says:

      Have your potatoes bloomed yet? if they have and it’s been a couple of weeks..(I think I remember it takes about 30 days after they bloom)., take a peek, dig out some dirt , out away from the roots…and if you find baby potatoes,.. cover them back up, heaping soil up to the lowest branches, and make sure they get enough water.

      • Winomega says:

        S’wt Tater, the potato that came from a very shriveled spud has two flowers, I’m thinking the fresher ones will follow.

        And something thorny has orange flowers with a swelling behind them. (I put pumpkin, watermelon, and something else to fight over the same area of garden because the patch wasn’t doing anything else.)

        I still can’t tell the difference between the corn and the grass that is trying to smother it.

    • Winomega says:

      Duh, I keep forgetting about Hugelkultur. Has anyone tried it in a warm and rainy climate? I’m not sure about where to find organic clay either unless I steal it from my mother’s yard. (Organic clay just being clay with a lot of things attempting to rot in it.)

      • Kermit5575 says:

        Have a friend using it here in NW Fl, He loves it, has totally gone away from tilling. He now digs a trench puts in his cut up trees and leaves, horse and cow manure, hay, topsoil and compost. He grows fruit trees and plants his whole garden on the mounds he makes from the trenches. I will try it later this year and let you know how it works out for me.

    • K. Fields says:

      Winomega –
      Colloidal oatmeal is simply regular old oats that have been ground into a really fine powder and given a big price tag. Grind up your own in a blender or coffee mill and you won’t feel so bad putting a bunch in your bath water.

    • One of the problems with low sodium diets is that we all need iodine to have a properly functioning thyroid. Another concern is in the way salt is produced these days – there is a belief that the processing interferes with the body’s ability to absorb the iodine. A third concern is related to the big push for everyone to drink more water – there is a point at which a low sodium diet is too low for the amount of water a person drinks.

      I can personally attest to the fact that low-sodium diets are NOT good for everyone with high blood pressure. The DH has high blood pressure but he always tests on the low end for sodium in his blood test at his annual physical and he salts EVERYTHING. High sodium levels and high BP don’t necessarily go hand in hand.

  20. S'wt Tater says:

    Lite progress this week.
    Rotated out some water, using and replacing..
    Certain costs have escalated, as a result of the preps we have made, and continue to make when opportunity presents, we will also-.
    Every few days, I do an experiment, to see how cheaply we can eat, for the day-with good nutrition, or try a new recipe. With temps over 90, the stovetop is getting used for everything.The oven is not an option.
    .Garden has been too wet to work..should be dry enough by this evening or tomorrow evening. I am guessing since we are 15″ over last years rainfall,(a couple of years ago this pattern) was followed by a drought..so planting will be in accord with this. I did find out last year, when zucchini are planted in the heat, it takes them about 30 days to begin producing..and I planted those from soaked seed.
    Did some planning with DH on the projects that need to be completed.getting the order and the list of items to buy to complete each one.
    Did some research on a future safety project, costs and needs..comparative of methods with expense.
    DH received a book this week from Health Science Institute, I have scanned it and did a review. i read throughly thru three chapters last night. This book addresses a wide range of illness with preps not commonly available, gives the sources and case studies.. I have made a list of some things we want to try, with sources.
    That’s about it for the week in actual preps.
    Hang in there Pack! Keep on doing what you can…where you can.

    • Sw’t Tater, I was trying to recall whether you were in Texas but when you said y’all were 15″ over last year’s rainfall, I laughed and thought I must have been mistaken.

      Do you have any Back to Eden style beds? We’re gradually putting some in–each time we get rain, I wish we were further along; they are capturing and holding the moisture well.

    • Winomega says:

      S’wt Tater, have you tried this recipe… I use a 6oz teacup to make it.

      1 vessel rice
      2 vessels water or available liquid
      1 vessel frozen vegetable mix in small pieces

      A spoonful or so of whatever spices or condiment you’re in the mood for.

      garnish with chopped meat, sliced omelet, mashed boiled egg, cheese, or sour cream

      I do this in a rice cooker, but I keep meaning to try this in a thermos

      • S'wt Tater says:

        I hadn’t seen the recipe, but have done that…I used chicken bullion, a little woosta sauce and calif style veggies., a 5oz can of ham topped with a sprinkle of cheese for those that desire it… That one worked well..
        .. but the one with hamburger and quiona, did not..I did not get burger drained well, and the quiona absorbed every iota of the grease, leaving the whole dish very greasy…+ I didn’t allow the dehydrated peas rehydrate long enough,,,,at least I know what was wrong..and it needed more seasonings… The dog and .I ate it, but DH ended up eating a fried egg sandwich,, I am in Tn…
        ..I have begun one of those beds with leaves, rotten logs in the bottom, but haven’t gotten the soil and plantings on it yet. I may wait til late fall,and plant winter hardy things/ like broccoli, cauliflower/ lettuce etc.., with a cover over them.if needed….just haven’t been able to do anything but cut grass between rains, having more than one yard to cut..is keeping me busy. One day it’s 4 inches and it’s raining , when it is dry enough to cut it’s ready for hay! I will need to bale Mom’s, outer yard. really.

        • Winomega says:

          Sw’t Tater… the paleo folks value the fat…. I guess it all depends on body composition….

          Keep the rejected Quinoa thing in mind for when fat is valued.

          I’m reminded of how I textted hubby’s friend for dinner suggestions, glommed onto corned beef, was crass in serving the related vegetables in the crock with the stripped fat still floating in the vegetable broth, and bit my tongue when she grabbed the fat for her plate. I understand now, and am glad I just let lie according to hospitality.

  21. Southern Girl says:

    Great news bctruck! Prayers that your wife continues to heal. That’s a major surgery & she may take some time to regain her strength & stamina. Will continue to send up the prayers.

    Preps for the week were a bit skimpy. New front brakes & had to replace sensors in car. At least I have gauges working again & know how much fuel in car. While at dealership, I jokingly asked if they would take an RV in trade for a truck. DH needs new vehicle. Sales guy told me they would actually come out to appraise at my home & not to replace battery or do any maintenance work before trading. This is great news for us as need a more reliable & larger truck for the DH. He’s a big guy & with his back surgeries, he has issues riding in my small Toyota truck.

    Did receive copy of “the Encyclopedia of Country Living”. Can’t wait to read it. Also, ordered an alternate commode source after bathrooms got shut down a few months back on a Sunday.. We had tree roots in septic lines. It took all day to get someone out to unplug the lines in to house. I had no idea this could happen. what a mess! Guess who got to clean the bathrooms while the DH dug a trench to break up roots. Yep! Think next time I’m digging the trench.LOL. Just another small emergency not prepared for. Did have mask & gloves for cleaning though.

    Going out now in the 90 degree heat to pull dead bean plants out of garden boxes. Killed all the tomato worms yest. Finally gave up on all the natural stuff & DH put Sevin dust on them. I’ve worked too hard on the garden to let those nasty things eat my tomatoes.

    Hope everyone has a great prepping week. Thanks to all for your continued help & much needed knowledge. When I feel like giving up I just come to this site & read. It just gives me the encouragement I need. Hope someday to be able to help others with what I learn.

    Need some suggestions of where to order food buckets that have a good price. Unable to find any free ones at the delis locally. Thanks


    • Winomega says:

      Southern Girl, do you have access to a Sam’s Club? They give away their food-grade buckets on an environmental initiative, and the lady actually talked me into taking more than I asked for.

      • Winomega & SG;
        That is great news for those who can not find buckets for free. Who would have known Sam’s would give them away. Their Walmart stores charge for them, in the beginning I would purchase them, but like you found another source.

    • Lantana says:

      SG, do you have Firehouse Subs in your area? See my comment to TN Mommy above for details on how they offer their pickle buckets for a small donation.

    • Schametti says:

      Hey SG. Protect those tomatoes! I decided I don’t have enough tomatoe plants, (with two full sized, and two cherry). I looove them tomatoes. Need more!!

      My beans look…. okay. (The bean part anyway, but something is nomming on the leaves pretty good).

      My jalapenos and banana pepper plants are producing the most adorable little peppers, and I keep tossing them into dinner. My herbs, (even the bane of my existence, the BASIL), are all doing great. We harvested the potatoes, and planted more, and the carrots are about done. We’re drowning in lettuce of all types, so much so that I’m literally, just giving it away to anyone who will take it.. lol..

      For my first ever attempt at this gardening thing.. I’m really pleased with the way it’s going. I’ve learned a lot, made some mistakes.. but I’m doing it! Go us! 🙂

      I was thinking about dehydrating some of the potatoes we have that we might not get around to eating. Anyone have any good tips? Diced? Sliced? I should google it.

      • FarmerKin says:


        I’ve done it both ways. I stored mine in canning jars when done, and I can tell you that you can get more product in the jars if you dice them, but you need to blanch the dices a little longer than the slices before dehydrating. I’ve only done them once, and two minute blanching was sufficient for the slices, but at 2 minutes the dices turned dark. Next time I will try 3 minutes on the dices and see how they turn out.

        Best place to learn about dehydrating is the web site dehydrate2store.com

        Good luck.

      • S'wt Tater says:

        Dice them definitely. I boil them with peeling on, for 10 min. douse them in cold water when I pull them out and skin comes off fairly easily.then dice and put in dehydrator..they seem to dry quicker diced, go in jars easier and more goes in a jar. My Dh made me a pestal and i pack my jars well. On one qt jar I put what began as 4 1/2 lbs

        • Schametti says:

          Thanks Kin and Tater.. Great tips. I’m hoping to be able to get the potatoes done in a couple days, and this will help me get started. I keep meaning to get to that website.. Farmer. I’ll book mark it now, and check it out, thanks a lot!! 🙂

  22. Mystery Guest says:

    Well made out another list.
    Another herb seed list.
    And this time for things I will have to save for. But they are needed/kinda fun things and so will save for them.
    Got my order of dry herbs. So when things calm down and I get out of bed feeling like a race horse am going to make salves.
    I have been praying that couples that one or the other doesn’t see the need to prep that they would see the need for it. I just cannot imagine not having the support in something that could help out with something that is as ?ordinary? as sickness or job loss, let alone something horrible.
    I will keep praying as I know there are a lot of couples that are at odds about prepping.
    I am so thankful R-me’s husband is now thinking along the lines of prepping.

    • Mystery G,
      You’re right, it’s being prepared for the ‘little’ things not just SHTF. Major storm, job loss,,, or just plain getting older. I’d like to retire in 5 yrs, and if we know how to be independent our $$ will stretch that much further
      DH is intelligent man, watches the news, always up on current events, and I think finally he is seeing the writing on the wall.

      I can’t wait to start building a solar panel at the end of the summer, and I’m glad this is a project we’ll do together.

      • Mystery Guest says:

        Well I get upset even when I do not know the couples and they tell of how hard it is to prep when the other is against it.
        I really, really get upset when someone tells that their supplies have been given away by their significant other. There have been several stories of that.
        And I hear the hurt in several comments of when their spouse gives them a hard time about prepping or that they have to hide it from them.
        I also realize the mindset that people have of there always being a restaurant or grocery store around but that could change in a flash.
        Undoubtedly those that do not see the need, do not like to eat.
        I am just ornary enough to if something happens every bite they take from my prepping stores they would get little jabs like “boy this sure is good”, “glad I had the supplies to fix”, “ain’t we lucky I prepped”.
        And they would be the ones sent out to see if they could find supplies.

        • Southern Blonde says:

          Great idea! I would be saying the same thing.

          • Mystery Guest says:

            Southern Blonde
            Oh, I can think of a lot of things to get a point across.

        • My dp non-prepper gets those comments from me all the time. Doesn’t sink in though. It’s frustrating, and it can be very depressing. Sometimes I suspect non-preppers want to drag us to their level.

          • Mystery Guest says:

            Well then tell them that prepping is your hobby, and when the SHTF or financial wow’s happen tell them to bad you didn’t have a hobby like you have and smack their hand every time they reach for something or say nope you ain’t using my hobby to make yourself comfortable.
            I would further make the point of eating a can of peaches in front of them. They will have to really work to get into my good graces.
            The problem with a lot of people is they think instant and they have not gone hungry. It ain’t fun even for a meal or a day.
            Also I am mean enough to buy a hasp and lock as I believe they are the ones that will sneak stuff.
            Hate to sound so hard, but these are still easy times, hard ain’t happened yet.
            And the first whiner gets it full force.

      • Shoot my whole retirement plan IS based on being self sufficient!!! Don’t believe I will have any S.S. or medicare and really got wiped out in 2008 and so my plan is to have a paid for homestead and a couple little side businesses and try to grow all my own food and be off grid so I am not paying anyone else to just live.

  23. Swabbie Robbie says:

    I just ordered the Ragnar Benson Book you are going to review. I also was un-aware he was still writing. Cool! hanks for mentioning it.

    This has been a week of storms and clean-up and auto maintenence here as well. Tires and exhaust system work on the commuter car. $$$.
    Otherwise it is house projects. between the storms. 3.5″ of rain yesterday.

  24. Instead of spending money for preps, this week I worked on sorting, cleaning, and packing items we had stuffed in our closet. Who would known we could cram that much stuff into a walk in closet. Six very large vacuum bags for bedding went into the over head of our garage. I told my dh he was not getting another pillow until he wears out all he had bought.
    Our neighbor came over we painted decking boards getting ready for the replacement which will start in a couple of weeks. The hired help and I, we into H/D purchased the additional support boards for the deck and cement for the fencing we are replacing.
    Cleaning to hide our preps, as company is coming unexpectedly. I feel they have no right to know what is going on, so I need to do “out of sight-out of mind”. Which dh almost gave away during the phone call. Yes, he is still with me, and I have not stuck him in the back forty. Of course, the I will kick your back side look was enough to stop him in his sentence.
    So I need to get back to the hidey hole situation.

  25. BCTruck – great news on your wife. best wishes that things continue to improve.

    not much this week but did pick up some more rice and thinking about getting some apricots for canning.

  26. Just garden and cleaning this week, when I can, the RA seems to be in my hips right now, wakes me up in the middle of the night and gets me out of bed in the mornings, ugh… Found a anti-inflammatory/joint supplement at pharmacy with no glucosamine in it. Can’t take it due to shellfish allergy, glucosamine, that is… Will see if it helps as rheumatologist has upped other drugs and theyre not helping.
    Did find some heat setting tomato plants at Lowes yesterday and will see if they actually fruit in the forecasted 100 degree heat coming up.
    Found out I actually get to be the mother of the bride on Thursday! Two weeks notice for ceremony, but better than not knowing like the first time she did it at age 18! I am insisting that we do make it special, with a dress, flowers, cake and grandmothers, even if it is going to be a JP ceremony! Their first weddings didn’t even have parents there and now they are!
    A little disappointed in the Million Moms for picking on the Zesty Guy, when there is so much more out there to be active about, like hungry children. I kinda like those ads….
    DH is on fishing trip with his bosses and yesterday afternoon I got a text pic of a massive redfish with spots that look like a kitty cat walked up its side. Well, guess more cash is going to be “invested” in a fiberglass trophy… At least the fish isn’t required for that anymore. Wonder if redfish is like wild pig, bigger they get the worse they taste… Guess I will find out.. Forgot to ask home if he released it after taking the pics..

    BC, awesome news about your wife!! Now praying for her to be up and about and HOME!

    Cleaning (meaning scrubbing with dawn and bleaching) front porch. It’s amazing how much grundge builds up with Grandkids dumping juices and the sidewalk chalk,a nd he little boy not bothering to walk to the edge of the concrete… Well, living in the country….. When the sun moves to the front of the house, I will clear the log splitter and other associated debris off and do the same. Got more oak trimmed and split for bar b que pits and fireplace.

    Don’t forget to look at the super moon tonight! Every pack needs to howl sometimes!

    • Lantana says:

      Congrats and best wishes to the happy couple, Shai.

      Have you tried adding lots of homemade bone broth to your diet to help your joints?

      Ask your butcher for beef knuckle bones as well as marrow bones for the most gelatin. Put the bones in your crockpot (for richer flavor, roast them first), cover with water, add a Tablespoon or two of your favorite vinegar (helps dissolve more minerals into the broth) and simmer for a day. Ladle off the the broth, cool and refrigerate–next day, it should be gelled up nicely.

      First batch has the most gelatin, but you can reuse the bones several times (one gal’s made it 12 days with one set of bones) until you fill up your freezer or get tired of messing with it.

      Add a few chicken feet (clip the toenails), if you’re making chicken broth from leftover carcasses.

      • Oh, yes on the bone broth…I keep it in the freezer to add to recipes, and just to sip on. Unfortunately, RA is an immune system thing…basically over active. Been dealing with regular osteo arthritis since my 20’s, runs in the family so when this popped up I knew something was different. Rheumatologist said I was fortunate to know the difference, and at this point don’t have much damage to my joints.
        Question! Does anyone know if white tail and axis deer can interbreed? Watching a doe that has the axis spots move across the front “yard” with some other whitetails and their fawns, shes got an extra long tail, with the white flag. There used to be an exotic ranch nearby and has been turned into a subdivision and the high fences are being removed. Yay! We’ve found emu running stray before around here before. Think I need to add a wildlife book to add to local plants, birds, and wildflower ID books.

        • axelsteve says:

          Shai Be careful ! Emus can mess you up! They are like some dogs,nice with the owner but strangers beware. There used to be a few in my area and no one went into there field.

      • S'wt Tater says:

        Add two egg shells..(just wash them off and use the eggs for something else),to the bones, something in the egg lining also helps release minerals into the broth…

    • Southern Mama says:

      I have RA too. Hard to plan productive days because you never know from one day to the next how you are going to feel. Just have to do the best we can when we can. The meds can sometimes make you feel worse than the disease! Thanks for reminding us about the super moon tonite, gonna go check it out!

      • No kidding, SM… I watch the Grandkids too so they tend towear me out while undoing most of everything I do! I think I would rather have bad day rather than bad nights… I’m up to 6 mtx weekly now, and I think it’s screwing with my sleep along with the prednisone. I’m always reminding myself just how crappy I felt before the meds, too… Need to go plant those new tomato plants, and never got to the back porch last night. Supposed to be near 100 again today and no rain in sight, Used waaay too much water outside yesterday. Did a load of wash and the water smelled sulfur-ey, which is a sign of well pulling down. Bleah!

        • Shai & Southern Mama;
          Shai you say osteo arthritis is in the family and now you have RA, so does SMama. May I just put a very polite thought in here……Have either of you been tested for the Lyme Disease??
          Reason I am asking you are pointing to some of the symptoms my dh had/has with Lyme when it flares up. It can be hard to diagnosis at times(weight loss, lack of appetite, food taste funny, joints ache, flu like symptoms, headaches). It took them 4-5 months, it was only due to a tv program that we proved what was going on to the specialist(head in sandbox doctor). It is just a thought you both might want to investigate.

          • S'wt Tater says:

            Use oregano oil for a week or two and see if it helps..It’s helped my Lyme arthritis. I haven’t had a flare since I began using oregano oil

          • Southern Mama says:

            Yep, tested for lyme disease and thankfully don’t have it. Sure wish we could figure out where RA is coming from and how we could get rid of it! I started having problems about 10 years ago, was in my early 40’s, tested positive for RA and started on meds. Autoimmune diseases are difficult to treat. I am thankful that my RA is not as severe as some.

    • I agree with Lantana about the bone broth. Nourishedkitchen.com has more information about it.

      On another note – I get arthritic symptoms from medication interactions. Recently, I tried a different anti-histamine for me and a few days into it, my writing hand wanted to curl and maintain that position. It and my wrist hurt bad enough that it would wake me in the night. I went off the anti-histamine and I’m back to my normal – snap, crackle, pop, groan. The DH has to be careful what kind of cholesterol meds he takes as some have caused him to have chest pains.

  27. Well I am continuing my sad weekly tradition of having a small disaster eat up all my prepping money.

    Was at sam’s thus loading up some stuff and noticed the back qtr window on my suv had been hit by something and shattered. Will be at least $3-400 to fix so there goes my prep money for the next two weeks.
    I don’t know who the hell said these things come in three’s but
    SHAME ON YOU I am tired of getting hit by $3-400 dollar disasters. Looks like I will never be able to turn my AC on or gets some more preps. Oh well at least I am getting used to sleeping w/o AC for after shtf just need to make sure to have lots of battery op fans.

    • t42n24t2 says:

      You are heard. It was the AC unit repair that has set me back many months. My sympathies.

    • axelsteve says:

      George. I do not know of the make of your bov. Most dealerships use factory parts and sub out the installation. At least in my area. You can go straight to a glass installer and have him do it and maybe save you some money since the dealer is not involved.

      • Gonna wait and see what my Ins agent says and hope my glass deductible is not to high. I just hate getting hit with a bunch of $2-3-400 dollar hits. Cuts into my FUN money!!

  28. This week was kinda lite for me. I’m having to make the decision between preps and getting some breathing room by paying off debt. The debt repayment usually wins. I’m tired of it being up to my nose and threatening to drown me.

    What I did add though is a marble rolling pin so I can start making some stuff by scratch. I also decided to try some of the Tattler lids so those got ordered as well.

    I got a few books to read and hopefully learn something from. Surviving Off Off-Grid: Decolonizing the Industrial Mind , and Backyard Medicine: Harvest and Make Your Own Herbal Remedies

    I’ve had to do some repairs this week. My mower busted a spring and it took me a while figure out where it went and even longer to install the fool thing. They have it stretched out twice it’s original length. I got that fixed today and also did a little bush hoggin in the pasture. I’ll probably rake it up on Monday to start a new compost pile. No need in letting all that beautiful grass and flowers go to waste in the pasture when I can turn it into nourishment for the gardens.

    I also made my first ever loaf of Applesauce Raisin Quick Bread. It was soooooooo good. I can see me getting fat(er) if I start baking breads.

    • Schametti says:

      Oooh very nice on the marble rolling pin. I was rummaging around in my Aunt’s closets a month or so back, and saw hers, and she let me borrow it for however long I want i, forever, lol… along with her marble pastry board. I haven’t gotten to use it yet, but it’s nice to have it for when I do!!

      • Schametti:
        The pack will right over for cookies, and don’t forget the tea, and coffee………..;-)

        • Schametti says:

          Becky, I’d totally do that.. Hubs can share his new Keurig, (fancy coffee pot), he got for his birthday this last past May.. and I do make a mean sugar cookie!! Come on over, up, down.. from wherever you be. :):):)

          • Schametti;
            Could not pass up the tease on the rolling pin a marble pastry board.
            I could just see all 13,161 of us showing up on your door step & seeing the look on your dh faces, when you announce we are there for tea (or coffee) & cookies since you had to test out the new(to you)rolling pin.
            You have a great week.

      • My grandmother had a glass rolling pin that you could put ice cubes into it. I think I still have it but it has no lid for when the ice starts to melt.

  29. Pretty quiet on the prepping front this week. I hit the swap meets Saturday, Sunday, Wednesday, and this morning, but didn’t come home with much but fruit and veggies.

    We are getting ready for a month on the Mainland, partly camping in Idaho and New Mexico, so have focussed on that. Yesterday I installed LaserGrips on a 1911 we are taking, and checked my DW’s S&W Model 60, which also has LaserGrips as she is right handed but left eyed. The laser makes a big difference for her.

    • Missy Taz says:

      Tom- NM is hot and dry right now with most of the mountain camping areas closed because of either active fires or extremely high fire danger. We have yet to see an inch of rain in the past 8 months…. We are officially the driest state in the nation because of extreme drought conditions.

      • Yep. It is always too hot in NM & AR this time of year. If need be we will hole up in motels as it’s only a few days, but our camping there is planned for commercial campgrounds. Idaho is pretty reliable though. We’ll be up on the Salmon River, and not in a prepared site. We go to that one nearly every year for rafting.

        • axelsteve says:

          We have a aunt who recently moved to Arizona. I wish that I could send her money every month so that she could buy ammo for us. Then next year go on a road trip to pick up the ammo.Have her get a few of those ruger 25 round mags for my son also.

  30. It has been a week of reflection for me.
    A lot of thinking about what it is I am nervous about. What it is I feel I need. Why my dh and I are at polar opposites when it comes to prepping and why we cant seem to find a middle ground on this subject.

    I have been really edgy lately and I cant seem to shake it. It has been finding its way out, interfering with everday things. I find myself just lost in thought.

    Still working on cleaning things out, organization, and all that fun stuff. It seems I get one step ahead and fall two steps behind in this area. Of course it doesnt help the kids will go looking for something and move everything I just went thru. Clothes are seriously the absolute worst offenders, especially since the kids dont like to give up their favorites regardless if it is 2 sizes too small. It makes it really difficult to know who has what that fits them.

    The dh and I have been talking more and more about moving to our property in mexico. It is looking like that is what we will be doing. But we will see. We have things here that have to be taken care of before we can make the final decision, so we are looking at another year or two at least. So thinking about that, I am trying to figure out what I can take with me. There are a lot of rules and regulations as to what you can take across the boarder. And then there are the fees associated with it. So a lot of research and thinking there.

    • axelsteve says:

      TG. You may not want to move to Mexico unless you are mexican or can pass as one. If you are not Mexican when shtf they will go after you and what you have. Things will go bad there before it does here and it will be worse there.You cannot own firearms there so security will iether suck or really suck.

    • TG;
      I am thinking it appears to be a safe harbor, but is it really? Is there somewhere else that you and dh with children can go to for safety, peace of mind. I understand you are thinking it is paid for, you can live there but your own statement leads me to believe even you are worried about the cartels. Have you spoken with family in the region, or others you know to see if life has change there for the better or worse…..
      Keep us post TG, we are thinking of you & your family.

    • TG, I used to have that trouble with my son and clothes, so just before I shopped the sales or if I had a coupon, I would tell him I was going shopping.
      The fear of ugly clothes motivated him to spend 15 minutes trying on what he had so I could make a list of what he needed. Then he could give his input. If I decided he needed two pair of jeans he could ask for the color and style he preferred.
      This also helped him learn what clothes he needed (as opposed to what he wanted), and after he was driving I was able to give him a credit card. If he found a sale on something he needed, he could pick it up. If it was a want, he had to check with me first. Because of early training, this system has worked for almost two years without him buying wastefully.

      • Patti, thanks for the advice. I will have to try something like that with mine. My oldest isnt so bad, but the littles are horrible.
        I am actually proud of my oldest. She was given some money for her birthday and not only did she buy her own clothes, but she made a GOOD deal on them. Woo hoo, she is picking up thrifty buying!

    • Axelsteve and Becky, thank you both for your concern. What worries the most is getting to our destination. The border towns are really scary right now. But we do have a few ideas brewing for that.
      The town we will be, is small and out of the way, the states is one of the safest in the country. We also have a lot of family around us.

      Will admit, its a trade off. And one we have been talking about off and on for a few years now. Gun ownership is legal in mexico, they are just rather strict about it. Um, really strict.

      We talk to family there on a weekly basis, know many people who go and visit family every couple of months. Others who make a living ferrying things back and forth (legal stuff, lol), so we know of the stuff going on, both in the border towns and in other areas.

      • Schametti says:

        Hey TG. How come so ansty lately? 🙁 *Hugs* Is it just a general sense of something coming, or that you’re not ready? Or that the world is just.. all bad? I keep going through waves of I’M READY.. and OMG I’M NOT READY.. every few months, so I could empathize with all of the above.

        How are you and the Hubs at polar ends of the prepping spectrum? Are you Pro, and him Anti? Or just different focuses? I know that my husband only things we need one thing to survive.. Bullets. >.< And everything else.. is left for me to worry about, lol… and that's one lonnnnng leftover list, let me tell you.

        • I wish I knew why I was so antsy. Then I would be able to do something about it. Maybe its just the weather, hot and the humidity oppressive. What ever it is, I am tired of feeling that way. Today I pulled out the mood improver….. the ipod. I told the kids to occupy themselves for a while and cranked the tunes. I almost (ok not even close) felt sorry for the neighbors. When I get into moods like this I tend to listen to some music that not a lot of people like.

          As for the dh, well saying he has his head burried is being polite. Every time I try to talk to him he tells me 100% nothing bad will happen. I am working on him though. He may not be able to see an economic collapse or anything like that, but I am getting him to pay attention to the weather a bit more. Itty bitty baby steps. Umm, actually thinking about it, maybe a snails pace would be more acurate as babies can move lightning fast when they want to. Lol.

          • When we talk to people about our garden, we talk about it in terms of getting back to the way our grandparents did some things – saving food now for unexpected events down the road. There are many things we’d like to do as far as prepping, but learning to grow our own food and how to preserve it is a big part of surviving whatever happens (in most cases).

  31. I accidentally clicked on ‘report comment’ to BC truck’s post instead of reply so I hope MD deletes that boo boo. I’m happy for BC and his DW. I can relate to BC’s joy as my DW is recouping from surgery. A ‘D & C’ and ultrsound revealed growths on her ovaries the doctors didn’t like so a Histerectomy was performed and biopsys showed the growths to be benign. No cancer cells. So we’re all happy about that.

    I added three cans and a half pound box brown sugar to the storage pantry. Also ordered and received the Aqua Pail 1000 from Emergency Food Warehouse. I clicked on the ad on this blog and found the pail there. I even left a note on the special comments box to give credit to MD’s blog for my purchase.

    Harvested some radishes and planted more. That’s it for this week. The recent stock market sell off has me thinking that maybe a bond market collapse isn’t far off. My 2 cents. Keep prepping all!

  32. K. Fields says:

    Week has been a marathon of harvesting here – trying to get a lot of things in before some scheduled rain arrives tomorrow. Would have preferred another couple of weeks growth on some plots but can’t miss the opportunity to use this rare rain to get some bonus crops started.

    Normal get togethers to celebrate the summer solstice are continuing this weekend (happy summer everyone) and, of course, celebrating the magnificent looking full moon! Wow – it’s really something special to see!

    Breeding time for the milch cows – crossing with Angus again to produce some beef steers for the winter of 2014-15. Now with 2 milkers, I’m spacing out the breeding to keep from having them both dry at the same time – been a long time since I was last going through this transition of eventually replacing my older Jersey. Certainly going to have A LOT of milk come next year!

    • JeffintheWest says:

      Lucky you! Now the only problem is that if you try to sell the excess milk, they’ll slap you in jail for trying to poison people or something! Though you could always clearly mark the containers as “not for human consumption.” 😉

      Sounds like things are going very well for you though!

      • JeffintheWest,

        It’s illegal in most states to “sell” raw milk. However, that does not stop farmers from allowing people to invest in time shares of cows.

        • JeffintheWest says:

          I know — which is why many organic/raw milk producers mark it “not for human consumption” as I suggested. I would mention also that in PA, at least, the state arrested some guy for selling “shares” in his cows to investors — claimed he was violating some FDA regulation or another, so be careful if you’re going the “shares” route, especially back east in the communist areas….

          • Bam Bam says:

            Zaycon is going to start selling milk–low heat pasturized, not raw. It is going to run $5.99 a gallon. I might order some to see how it tastes.

            I learned a remarkable fact yesterday (well, I don’t know for certain that it is a fact but I read it on their website yesterday)–the milk you buy in the grocery store does not need to be refrigerated. It has enough preservatives in it to kill anything that might think about growing. It can be stored in the pantry and it will not go bad.

            Can anyone comment on this claim based on personal experience?

            • Winomega says:

              Bam Bam, I buy “normal” pasteurized homogenized D milk. I store it in the fridge, opened and disturbed regularly. It does start tasting interesting once it’s passed it’s sell-by date. Too interesting for tea, not interesting enough to make white-sauce without more something something.

            • BamBam;
              Saw the milk ad from Zaycon also, dh can not consume milk from the store. I asked a friend to split it with me, but her family has the same problem. So you will have to drink it for me, and tell me how good it tastes. Then mail me a go cup………..snivel snivel……:-)
              Maybe my sister will split an order with me…..maybe not all is lost………

            • S'wt Tater says:

              can’t be true.. milk ruins in refrigerator, before the date, on it, and refrig has thermometer set…and 40 temp…

            • Bam Bam, I think I know what you are talking about. If so it isnt the stuff you buy in the grocery store. The stuff I think you are talking about is treated at even higher temps the regular milk. It has a distinct burnt flavor to it. The regular stuff in the grocery store will go bad, and if I remember correctly the ultra ultra high heat pasteurized milk will also go once its opened.

              Low pasteurized milk/organic is a better option then ‘regular’ but it also tends to have the same issues. You could have milk from who knows how many cows in that one gallon. When I cant get milk from my local dairy (raw) and I am stuck buying from the grocery store, I will just buy regular.

              Becky, has your dh tried raw milk or goats milk? Sometimes the problem is the treatment of the milk rather then the milk itself. Although, that is sometimes, not always.

            • oldguy52 says:

              Somebody’s jerkin’ your chain….

              My milk, I get the BGH free stuff, goes sour in the fridge just like it always has and a darn site quicker if I forget it on the counter or something.

              There is milk you can get that doesn’t need refrigeration, like this stuff:


              Here’s some info on it:


              But if your milk is in the cooler when you buy it you better keep it cold when you get it home or she’s gonna’ get stinky. Sounds like the other needs cooling too, once the package is opened.

              • oldguy52 says:

                Just looked up the price for this stuff on Amazon. Organic Valley whole milk, $4.92 per liter (quart) $59.12 for a package of 12, + shipping.

                Since I’m paying 4.49 per GALLON for the BGH free whole milk, which is the expensive stuff in the cooler, I don’t think I’ll be switching any time soon.

                If stuff goes to heck in a handbasket it’ll be powdered milk at our house

              • Even the shelf stable milk will go bad once opened. We used to buy it under the brand name Parmalat and I try to keep a box on the shelf in case I don’t make it to the grocery store, as it tastes much better than powdered milk. One day the oldest was looking for milk and I told her to look in the cabinet. She opened it and put it back in the cabinet. When I got home, I looked for the milk in the fridge and had the immediate feeling of dread when I realized what she did. YUCK!

            • Bam Bam,
              I’ve left milk out of the fridge on a hot day for a few hours, and as expected, it spoiled. Wondering if the claims are an advertising scare tactic. There are some milk packages that allow the milk to be stored on the shelf until it’s been opened. These resemble the steri-pak juice boxes and have either been heated to a higher temperature and packaged in a sterile environment or in some cases, irradiated. Once in the sterile package and sterilized, there are no bacteria to cause spoilage.
              I’m not all that sure why folks are so against pasteurization, since all it involves is heating the mil to 162 degrees for around 15-20 seconds, and then cooling it again. My DW remembers her mom pasteurizing milk for the family in small batches in the kitchen when she was growing up.
              Note that pasteurization is not the same as sterilization, as the former does not kill all bacteria, but kills enough of them to make the milk safe to drink, while the later kills ALL bacteria.

              • K. Fields says:

                OP – I think BamBam is referring to UTH milk.

                Even though it is sold in the coolers at stores along with “normally” pasteurized milk, it actually doesn’t need to be chilled due to it’s 280 degree flash processing. Dairies selling it put it in the coolers simple because they figure no one would buy it if they didn’t.

                Most of the folks against pasteurization feel that the loss of vitamins, beneficial bacteria and enzymes are not worth the added “safety.” Fat soluble vitamins usually drop about 60% (that’s why they add in vitamin D after pasteurization), some water soluble by 80%, and enzymes such as lipase are completely killed.
                Like most things, people just want the chance to choose for themselves.

      • K. Fields says:

        Jeff –
        Raw milk sale IS legal here in CA (well, most of CA at least) but it’s not really worth going through the hoops necessary to market it unless you’ve got a sizable operation.
        Although no one has ever gotten sick from my dairy products while staying here, I know my operation would never pass any legislated health and safety checks – so I’ll probably just get another pig …

        • JeffintheWest says:

          Kind of sad, isn’t it? Who knew that our grandparents were in such danger from their own cows? Fortunately REGULATION MAN is here to save the day!

          • K. Fields says:

            Yeah, but it seemed that fewer people were simply looking to make a fast buck back then – most were interested in good husbandry and return customers not volume.
            Today it seems way too many people and companies only look at the bottom line and WILL cut corners to make a few extra cents if they can get away with it, no matter what effects those cuts have on their animals.

            REGULATION MAN being here to save the day seems the only course available when there are people who simply no longer care.

            • Lantana says:

              California sounds very different from Texas.

              Here, raw milk cannot be distributed for retail sales; it can only be sold at the producing farm. So, it’s only small family farms who get the license to offer raw milk. And they’re very focused on animal husbandry.

              Are the CA raw milk producers pooling milk or something?

              So many of the regulations we *think* will rein in big business seem to smother small businesses instead–and they’re the ones whose competition will spur the bigger guys to improve.

              • Lantana says:

                That and informed consumers addresses a lot.

              • >>the regulations we *think* will rein in big business seem to smother small businesses instead<<

                Lantana, that is considered a feature by many big businesses, not a bug. They already know they have the resources with which to comply, and that their upstart competitors don't.

                \Several founders of famous multi-billion dollar a year companies have come out in the last year with statements that they could not start their businesses today: the regulations they would be subject to would keep them from ever starting.

                Ex: The CEOs of Subway, The Travelers, and FedEx. Just Google "could not start their business today regulations". They know the score, and are honest enough to say so publicly.

                Existing big businesses like regulations. It is a feature of the economic system we used to call fascism, but that is considered too impolite today. We are required in polite company to refer to it as crony capitalism. Either way, existing businesses use government to shut out less politically adroit competitors.

                Color me old fashioned: I prefer to call it fascism.

              • K. Fields says:

                Lantana – yes it sounds like our laws are just the opposite. Here in CA, a dairy that is licensed for raw milk can sell it anywhere – but the licensing requirements are very strict.
                Some folks have been trying to get around the licensing requirements by setting up “herdshare” agreements as BamBam alluded to above, but the state has been coming down pretty hard on those operations.

              • Lantana, have you heard about the bill for the dairys to be allowed to sell their milk off premises? I know it was being talked about a while ago but I am not sure what happened with it. I know my dairy was hoping it would pass. They have people who come from a couple hours away and they were talking if this bill passed setting up a couple of drop spots.

                • TG, HB 46 made it out of the House Public Health committee by a 9-2 vote in April.

                  When bills get out of committee, they go to the Calendars committee, which determines which bills will be scheduled for debate before the entire House.

                  HB 46 died in Calendars when the 83rd Legislature’s regular session ended earlier this month.

                  IIRC, that’s the third session the bill has made it out of committee but died in Calendars. So, the next opportunity is the 84th Legislature in 2015.

        • axelsteve says:

          Careful! Pigs lead to bacon!

  33. JeffintheWest says:

    Not much this past week. Got in some more books that we wanted to take a look at, and an order of heirloom tomato seeds, but that’s about it.

    We all got sick with whatever is going around too, and then, our realtor lady had car trouble and had to cancel the house tour. We’re on for a new date now, but are still feeling under the weather, so it may be iffy again. I’m hoping whatever this is clears up pretty soon!

    In the meantime, we had a team discussion that resolved a few issues amongst us, and also had a good discussion on general principles regarding prepping, gardening, and being ready for the unexpected.

    As a former Intel analyst, I have to tell you folks I’m really worried about the future. Not so much because of any single incident, but because of the sheer stupidity demonstrated by the current ruling party in continuing to push hard against the values still held by many (and probably most) of us. Their continuing pushing of a radical agenda, combined with an extremely cynical approach to electoral politics is slowly but surely convincing an increasing number of Americans that not only do their opinions and desires not matter, but that the usual American mechanisms which allow them to express and enforce their opinions (legal voting, for example) no longer work. If that trend continues, sooner or later a “spark incident” will occur and violent resistance will begin, and at that point, Thomas Jefferson’s contention about blood and the tree of liberty will become all too true.

    • worrisome says:

      Jeff, traveling around as you do, how do you arrange for book orders and such to catch up with you? If you are uncomfortable answering due to opsec I will understand.

      You are right about what the whole political climate is looking like. When people really, really get that their civil rights mean nothing anymore and that the “controls” that are being put on are going to begin to crowd them, there may be some flash back. Hate to see it happen, it is all very very scary.

      • JeffintheWest says:


        I have a mail drop at a “permanent home base” location in NM that everything gets sent to. They forward it to me wherever I am when I call them and ask them to. It’s a “mailboxes, etc” kind of place (though not that particular company), so it’s all very convenient except that it takes a couple of weeks to a month longer to get my mail. I pay my bills electronically right now, so I’m not late on anything ever.

        There’s an RV club in Texas that does the mail forwarding thing for their members, and at one time I seriously considered going down and joining and getting my license and vehicle tags from Texas — which would also change my residency to Texas (no state income taxes), but since we are deciding to settle in another state (CA — and just about the worst state we COULD settle in from a prepper’s point of view — as you well know), it wouldn’t be worth the trouble and expense.

        If you’re ever considering the lifestyle, though, you may want to check out the RV club in Texas (in a small town near Houston) as it would save you a TON of money. As far as establishing Texas residency goes, all you have to do is get your driver’s license, register to vote (you can do both at the same time) and get your tags issues (and a safety inspection sticker, which used to cost about $15 and basically verified that your lights worked and stuff) and you are, voila! a Texas citizen — free from all state income tax burdens. The RV club lets you use their address as your home address (and it’s all totally legal by Texas state law) and there you have it! 😉

    • riverrider says:

      i concur. i only hope that states can rise up instead of indiduals as indiduals will be labeled “terrorists” instead of freedomfighters. hard to label a state “terrorist”. it looks exactly like 1850-59 right now. tdl idolizes lincold, seems destined to make the same errors. there are two completely different cultures under one flag now and that can’t last, and it can’t be long now.

      • Two different cultures , let me guess which one TDL belongs to, I bet it is not the one who has to budget it’s meager paycheck to get through the month and pray that some small disaster does not hit them.

        Or does he belong to the one who has NO FREKIN PROBLEM spending $100 million of someone else’s money to take his family on a trip to Africa.

        That’s a real hard on for me to figure out maybe someone can tell me the right answer.

        • riverrider says:

          george, maybe they’ll stay there:) btw, did you see the HUGE bulletproof glass in front of him in germany this week. it was like he was in an aquarium, lol!

      • JeffintheWest says:

        RR, I’m worried about that too — a LOT of chatter about secession, and if it comes down to that, I guess I’m still a Texican at heart and would have to go with my state. But if push DOES come to shove, I’m hoping some brave states will take the lead too — maybe not with the idea of secession per se, but with the idea of restoring the Republic. It’s all pretty scary stuff.

        • Schametti says:

          I don’t know what I hope, but state-by-state secession sounds scary as heck. Mostly because I’m crazy-far from Texas.. and I’m not sure which way MY state would go. I’m a bug-in and hide-out and lay-low kind of girl, I really don’t want to be out there, trying to make it to a like-minded state. So.. yikes!! lol

          I fully admit that I way way too many conspiracy tv shows, and love them, lol… but with every one I watch, I get a little more concerned, and just a little more relieved that I’m putting things aside for an uncertain future. I mean, seriously.. how can there be ANYONE out there who DOESN’T think.. that they need to prepare? I just don’t get it.

          Tonight, (and I’m not sure how I feel about Jesse Ventura, lol.. I can’t decide if I can take him seriously or not), but his show tonight was on this massive underground city sized bunker that they’re getting ready in the Ozarks.. and a huge castle looking compound above it, being built by an ex-CIA-billionaire. Along with a conspiracy guru guy touting that they’re getting ready for something, and the time is now, and The Illuminati, New World Order, yadda yadda yadda. From (the purposefully started) chaos comes …new order, etc.

          But it’s just one more story to let me know that the rich, the politically powerful, etc.. really ARE getting ready, and you and I aren’t invited, and holy crap, I sure hope what we do today, will keep us alive tomorrow, when they’re all safe underground, and we’re not. :/

          • JeffintheWest says:

            Actually, what really needs to happen is not that some states should secede, but that the states still following the Constitution should kick out the extreme socialist states until they agree and promise to restore the Constitution within their boundaries. Why should WE have to leave because THEY are screwed up? 😉

    • axelsteve says:

      Kinda funny how you do not need i d to vote but tdl wants you to show id to buy ammo.

      • Yeah really amazing that is the only Right that the Libtards want to protect. You think they would want I.D. so they could somehow see who votes for and against them.

  34. ladyhawthorne says:

    Great news BC on your wife’s prognosis!

    This has definitely been a week of ups and downs. My Mom had surgery for a duodenal ulcer 2 weeks ago, they moved her to a rehab center as she was not able to do much for herself, her entire body swelled up twice it’s size and we were worried if she was going to make it or not. Dr said this Tuesday she is healed from the surgery, the swelling is coming down, about to normal now and they are releasing her on Tuesday from the rehab center. A few days of getting back to normal then a 3 day trip back home to TX and finding some better Drs than the ones she had that caused the ulcer in the first place. Along with over medicating her on oxycodone.

    I’m a week late again on getting paid at work. They are trying to cut some spending and came out with a new schedule. Scared the crap out of me as I was cut to 30 hours a week! I said I would need the schedule changed to give me Fridays off so I could at least find a part time job. He came back with just to keep it to 80 hrs per pay period (twice a month) so I will be ok with that. Not so ok with our paychecks being late though. It does have me worried even though he says it will break and get normal again. Hope Mom has my room ready, I may need it.

    I did get some other things done though besides worrying.
    Canned up 10 half pints of ketchup and 8 pints of tomato sauce. This was some #10 cans I had got for next to nothing at the discount grocery, so now they are much more usable and will last longer in the jars.

    I’ve got 4 large zucchinis I need to do something with. Time to look up recipes. I may shred and freeze until I need it.

    I was trying to vac seal dehydrated stuff in canning jars with the food saver attachment and 2 jars would not seal. No nicks, clean surface, new lids. Then I pulled another box of lids out, this time Kerr instead of Ball. Sealed on the first try! Anyone know if this is an issue with Ball lids or just an odd happening?

    I dehydrated tomato skins for making powder and also dehydrated some of my peppers that are growing like crazy.

    That’s it for me this week, not much I know, but too much time was spent on the phone long distance to Michigan to keep up with Mom.

    • JeffintheWest says:

      I hear a lot of companies are going to start putting people on 29 hours a week of work so they can avoid Obamacare mandates. You may want to start looking for something else to work at to make up any potentially lost income.

      That late paycheck thing would really bother me too. Seems like a bad sign. Are they going to get back on track soon? I remember the military did that to all of us one time (only a day late, but still) and we wound up losing a day’s pay permanently over it. That was back in the ’80’s, but it still rankled!

      Good luck with everything! I’m praying all comes out well with your mom.

      • worrisome says:

        Yes, under the government mandate, 30 hours per week is considered full time. At 30 hours per week companies must either pay to insure you or will be charged as a tax of $2000 per person for insurance. Target, Walmart, many restaurant chains, some casinos and lots of cities, counties and states are reducing hours to reduce the “load”. Those that are with smaller companies,…less than 50 can also reduce hours in order to not be responsible for them as employees. Target in fact is only hiring people to work 3 days per week in order to insure that there is no extra hours that would put them over the 29.99 mandate. Some companies were up front about what they are doing and even issued press releases, after controversy, they are just .now.quietly.doing.it.

        • t42n24t2 says:

          Now I know why suddenly everyone is hiring: to beat Obamacare. Okay, that makes sense, because the economy doesn’t seem to be getting better. Thank you.

          • riverrider says:

            where the heck are they hiring? i have a college degree and 29 years military, much of it technical, and i can’t buy a job.

            • t42n24t2 says:

              The jobs are mainly retail, although we do have a lot of medical and technical companies here. Also, construction. We really didn’t feel the downturn too much. Try Pittsburgh, Pa and the surrounding area. Lots of sports, universities, and reasonable housing prices. Traffic can be an issue, though.

        • K. Fields says:

          worrisome and all –
          CA Assembly Bill 880 will probably be voted on this coming week in an attempt to close the so-called “Walmart Loophole”.
          This cutting hours to dump healthcare costs onto the state is simply morally wrong in my book.

          • JeffintheWest says:

            Probable unintended consequence, Walmart and the other employers will simply pull out of the state if the costs get too high, thus costing thousands more jobs (even if they are part time). It’s still America, even if only slightly, and you can’t force bad legislation down people’s throats and then try and make them like it with more bad legislation. The next bill I expect to hear about will be some attempt to try and tax anyone who LEAVES the state (individual or corporate) at some ruinous rate….

            • riverrider says:

              tdl wanted to do that, but too many senators are invested overseas.

            • worrisome says:

              They already have that going, Jeff. Taxing for leaving that is.

            • K. Fields says:

              Jeff, there’s always consequences. But let’s face it, if large employers offered benefits such as health insurance there would be no need for a government program to cover the employees.
              I simply don’t feel my taxes should be used to help Walmart to make even larger profits.

              • JeffintheWest says:

                K. Your taxes ALREADY support Walmart and tons of others to make even larger profits. Under the old system, employers were able to deduct the cost of employer-offered health plans — which is what caused the cost of health care to skyrocket in the first place — with no incentive to shop around, people paid whatever the medical professions charged because THEY didn’t actually pay it. Likewise there was no incentive for medical types to innovate and control costs since they got paid by insurance companies who simply charged more to make up the difference. Then, along came Obamacare which does nothing to fix that system, but then makes it worse by trying to force people to buy unneeded medical coverage and pay for others’ unneeded medical services (I really don’t want my tax dollars to subsidize Sandra Fluke’s sex life, either, but apparently that’s not my choice). Add in to that the ruinous malpractice foolishness that has forced doctors into defensive crouches by ordering huge numbers of expensive medical tests and other procedures in order to cover their own sixes. What we COULD do is dissolve health insurance in all its forms and get doctors and hospitals to start innovating and exercising actual skill in their professions. You know, kind of like the old town doctors used to do.

                All things considered, I prefer a free-market solution as opposed to bad legislation denying me the freedom to choose to live my own life my own way, which is then “enforced” at the point of a gun by yet more bad legislation.

                • Obama made back-room deals with pharma to not negotiate drug prices (no imports were part of the deal), waivers to unions and many special interest groups (big donors, etc.), and so on and so forth. Also ensured no tort reform so that lawyers stay in the big bucks.

                  No way can part-timers afford health care, so pay itty bitty fine, whilst the worker bees pay higher taxes to pay for more Medicaid and subsidized insurance.

                  • worrisome says:

                    Mari, back room deals extended to the insurers as well. There are no government mandates on how much a premium an insurer can charge. The mandate states that 85% of the premium, whatever it be, must be used to “pay claims and to provide wellness education and care”. You can favor a lot of your friends and favorites with high paying jobs pumping out printed material on the dastardly results of smoking for instance. 15% of the premium is to cover “administrative” costs. So the higher the premium, the larger the “administrative” costs budget is………..meaning the big dudes take home bundles……………..

                • worrisome says:


              • K. Fields,
                So how much more are you willing to pay for items at Walmart? As for their profits, if they’re doing really well, perhaps you should buy some stock and get a piece of the action. They are BTW currently paying 2.57%, which is better than a savings account.

                • K. Fields says:

                  Hey OP,
                  I don’t shop at Walmart.
                  I don’t like their business practices so I don’t patronize them – it’s simply a personal thing.
                  For other folks saving money is the bottom line – everybody has to do what they personally feel is right.

              • worrisome says:

                “If large employers offered benefits”…………most of them already do. The “hit” on this is going to be the smaller businesses, 50 – 500 employee groups, that truly don’t have the resources anymore to contend with yet another “government” interference.

                And candidly, who in the heck, besides the unions ever decided that a business was “responsible” for the health of the nation anyway??? The fact that businesses did step up to help and cover their employees was not some God Given Right and Responsibility, and so, it became an employee dependency.

                • JeffintheWest says:

                  Employer health care was a way to raise employee’s salaries without actually giving them more money. It actually started during World War II when wage and price controls were put on everything as a way to lure workers away from competitors (which was important when there was a massive labor shortage thanks to one tenth of the total population at the time being in the military to fight the war). Those wage and price controls continued clear into the early 1950’s as the economy shifted from wartime production back to peacetime production. But that’s how all this got started. Then the unions got involved because it gave them an additional thing to negotiate and an additional thing to control their membership with. From there on, it was all downhill….

          • axelsteve says:

            Government healthcare is morally wrong period !

          • worrisome says:

            “morally”? wrong? Take a hard look at the whole ObamaCare bill. For “morally” wrong. The feds have no business mandating abortion coverage to religious entities and yet they are, another area that will be tested in court as a freedom of religion issue (ongoing now). There are waivers in the bill for some very strange and protected classes of businesses and individuals as well. There are lots of provisions in this that stink. And “morals” have nothing to do with it on either side.

            At the present time, a spouse is “not” a dependent under the California version. One parent insures the children as dependents, the spouse has to get insurance in the exchange separately. Who knows what is going to happen on this one.

            Businesses are trying to stay in business. They are going to make financial choices as they can. Low skilled workers are going to be at risk of ending up with 2 part time jobs, likely at about 60 hours per week at regular time in order to pay for insurance at all or be fined. This first year, the fine for not insuring is pretty much nothing……but each year going forward the fines get higher. It stinks, no doubt.

            As far as what California legislation is going to do is anybody’s guess. As I have heard, while Cali may pass something to close the loophole, it will become a court issue on the basis of you can’t tell a business how many employees to have and how many hours they must be allowed to work. In any event, it will be just another no growth, no business, let’s see how many more businesses leave Calif legislative nightmare.

            Federally, the GAO has said the exchanges are a mucked up mess, too many states are refusing to build their own and they are so far behind as to be laughable.

            Premiums on California’s plans for lower income individuals are going to be heavily subsidized for the first three years………..subsidized going from 133% of poverty level to 400% of poverty level. Under 133% of federal poverty level will be automatically enrolled in MediCal. They are going to be subsidized by the Feds, after that, who knows.

            Businesses despite hourly restrictions will have a choice to make and it is really quite simple.
            A. Pay the $2000 per year per person tax to the Feds and close up all group plans. As in, let’s say, the insurance is $400 per person per month to insure an employee and the business has say 300 full time elligible employees. The math is as follows: 400×12 =$4800.
            $4800*12 months = $1,440,000 to continue to insure the employees. The tax = $600,000.

            The Federal “tax” becomes an incentive to dump the plan when the business only has to pay $2000 per year to get the same coverage. The numbers get huge quickly…

            b. Or the business can continue to take on the burden of insuring the employees for many reasons…a desire to be consistent with a group of employees, the business feels it has a “moral” responsibility to their employees, they can afford to continue coverage, or the business is in some competitive business that requires them to keep coverage to maintain an employee group, or there is union involved. To do this, the business then needs to be sure that their plans do not “overly” care for their employees, or they will be considered “Cadillac” plans…and guess what…………more taxes get issued, to both the employer and the employee.

            There is tons more to this, but that is the bare bones issues as far as how businesses are looking at this. Businesses like Walmart and Target aren’t really about what is “morally” right or wrong when it comes to this stuff. I took an example of 300 employees, can you imagine the “savings” that come into play when you have 300,000 employees?

            • worrisome says:

              Got the math in their twice, should be $4800x 300 employees…

            • worrisome,
              The company I work for has less than 50 employees and decent healthcare. We have already been warned that the premiums will be going up, and the benefits going down, starting next year.
              This is simply going to continue to crush businesses.

              • worrisome says:

                Yes, Ohio Prepper, this first year, there may be a windfall to businesses for dumping their plans and letting the employees go to the exchanges, but as the exchanges “mature” and the claims all start rolling in there will be no place to hide as far as costs of insurance premiums go whether in an exchange or on their own.

                • worrisome,
                  I agree, but for the moment the companies are doing what makes best business sense to simply survive.
                  When flood waters are headed your way, you go to higher ground, even when you know that ground may eventually be flodded. The first move buys you time to try and plan the next one.

                  • worrisome says:

                    I agree. They do the math and make a decision…for all those they wax with “social theory”….in order to make payroll..making the budget work requires tough decisions

          • K. Fields,
            “This cutting hours to dump healthcare costs onto the state is simply morally wrong in my book.”
            What is, in my opinion morally wrong is the goverment mandating any private company to do anything that is not safety related, and then not expecting consequences, or forcing those of us who work to subsidize those who won’t including their right to a cell phone.

            • K. Fields says:

              There are many practices that I consider morally wrong in both business and government. I don’t believe either should be given free reign to do as they please.

              • K. Fields,
                “I don’t believe either should be given free reign to do as they please.” In theory I agree; however, there is a big difference between private and public sector. In the private sector you can simply not use a prodict or service of a company you don’t like. With the government, you will do what you’re told under threat of fines, arrest, or worse. Therefore, a private sector company must do what it can to stay alive, within the rules, lest it simply close it’s doors, and everyone gets adversly impacted.

                • K. Fields says:

                  “a private sector company must do what it can to stay alive”
                  Yes, but a company’s moral obligation should also be factored in – it should be weighing profit against the overall market well being.

                  If I’m selling something I’ve produced, I want everybody involved to be satisfied – not just me. What was once called a square deal. Why shouldn’t I expect larger companies to act in the same manner?

                  Our nation’s history is full of private industry abuse to employees, the general public and the general environment – and the government regulations which have gotten so onerous are a direct result of that abuse. Without the abuse, without the lack of morality, there wouldn’t be the need or desire to enact the laws.

                  • JeffintheWest says:

                    It’s a pity we can’t “enact some laws” to restrict the abuses by government, isn’t it? their abuses seem a lot more egregious to me right now.

                    BTW, there is another way to restrict private businesses; the free market — don’t buy their products. You already exercise that right when you refuse to shop at Walmart. Seems to me you ought to be able to organize a boycott and drive them out of business if their abuses are as bad as you say….

                    And, btw, I think you’re mostly talking about things from the 1890’s when muck-raking was all the rage. If the SCOTUS can overturn a key provision of the VRA based on 40 year old data, then I’d say that we can drop the 120 year old data and get some new input. Like, for instance, about GMOs. But nobody seems to want to regulate them at all….

                    • Monsanto Protection Act – should be a red flag when a specific company is named. That was enough to get my attention to start looking at GMOs.

                      From what I’ve read, the US is one of only a few countries in the world that allows them. My understanding is that certain crops in the US can’t be exported either, because the countries don’t want the GMOs to be imported.

                    • K. Fields says:

                      “Seems to me you ought to be able to organize a boycott …”
                      Jeff, as I stated, it’s a personal thing with me – same with trying to buy only goods made in the US. I promote businesses I feel are “good” for this country and I avoid those I feel are simply dragging it down. If you feel saving a few dollars is more important to you, that’s fine.

                      “I think you’re mostly talking about things from the 1890′s …”
                      Not sure I understand that statement. Are you saying that you feel there have been no private industry abuse to employees, the general public or the general environment in the US since the 1890’s? Huh, I wonder if we have been living in the same country.

                    • JeffintheWest says:

                      You know what, k? I’m tired of your little put-downs and your snotty superciliousness. You just go ahead and play your little mind games, because I’m sick of trying to explain anything to someone who won’t listen because they already know everything there is to know in the entire world. So you have a great rest of your life, and good luck in your preps.

                  • K. Fields – do you frequent any small businesses on a regular basis? If so, have you gotten to know the owner? If not, get to know at least one then talk to him/her to get an idea of what the new regulations are doing to them and what kinds of adjustments they are going to have to make to accommodate the new rules. You might be surprised at what you learn. Profit margins in small companies tend to be really narrow which means they will have to do one of two things, raise prices or let people go. If you raise prices in a bad economy, you lose customers. If you lose customers, you may have to let people go anyway.

                    Running a business is a tricky balance between price, cost and the cost of government mandates. There’s no way around it. Yes, some rules and regulations are good, but the government should not be mandating that businesses provide insurance to employees. An individual’s health and healthcare is their responsibility, not the company’s. Offering insurance used to be a way to attract employees – but that was back when there were more jobs than people looking for jobs.

                    • worrisome says:

                      + 100

                    • K. Fields says:

                      GA Red,
                      I think it, at times, comes down to whether a company sees employees as assets or simply as a disposable commodity.
                      Yes, I frequent a number of small businesses regularly. I know some of their owners very well and we discuss these issues frequently. Sometimes we agree, sometimes we don’t.
                      Perhaps you’re right that an employer should feel no responsibility for their employee’s health and healthcare but my opinion is that they should.

                  • K. Fields,
                    “. . . a company’s moral obligation should also be factored in – it should be weighing profit against the overall market well being.”
                    I agree in concept, but obligation to the well being of the market, or for that matter the employees, is not a suicide pact, and quite often depends on who sets the standard for the “well being”. When the government sets the standard, quite often once it has been met, the standard changes. Look at the coal industry and the coal fired power plants. We now remove particulates and gasses from a power plant that we couldn’t even measure 30 years ago. Incremental improvements that are part government mandate, and part company innovation. Generating a megawatt of power now takes significantly less coal than it did 20-30 years ago, but the government, as depicted by TDL’s speech today, will never be satisfied, so it again comes back to a private sector company must do what it can to stay alive.

                    • K. Fields says:

                      OP –
                      I have no hard answer on what constitutes “well being”, but like most things, I think there is a common sense balance that is achievable. If your company (in this case Walmart) just made 3.78 billion PROFIT in the first 3 MONTHS of 2013, I think you’re doing a lot more than just “staying alive”.

                    • K. Fields,
                      Assuming your 2013 Q1 number is correct (and I have no reason to doubt it), then you need to take into account some other numbers that are relevant here. With a market capitalization of $247.5B, the profit of $3.76B represents a profit of only 1.5% for the quarter, or 6% annualized return, before taxes, which is a pretty skimpy number when compared to say, Apple.
                      With 2.2M employees, that same profit represents a per employee profit of $1700, again before taxes.
                      Finally, with Wal-Mart and Sams Clubs operating a total of 19,857 stores worldwide, that amounts to $346000 for the quarter, or about $3800 per day before taxes.
                      Simply being in awe at such big numbers doesn’t really tell the whole story.
                      Quite often we hear the politicians bemoaning the large amounts of money being made by the likes of Exxon oil, who may report $8B in a quarter. What the politicians never mention is that the $8B is after tax, on a market cap of $396B (or 2% for the quarter) AFTER paying $22B in taxes.
                      I’m not saying that I agree with all of Wal-Mart’s practices, but throwing around big numbers without knowing what they really mean, is simply a straw man argument.

                    • Oops.
                      The 19,857 stores should have been 10,857 stores, although my calculations correctly used the lower number.

                    • oldguy52 says:

                      OP, The 1.5 percent return doesn’t accumulate to 6 percent. If it is 1.5. percent for all quarters 1 through 4, then it is also 1.5 percent for the year.

                      And of course that sounds like a lot of money but it doesn’t take much of a downturn to eliminate a 1.5 percent margin.

                      Every person on this blog that is selling their time to an employer has FAR better margins than that.

                    • oldguy52,
                      Nasic brain fart. The annualized yield of 1.5% is correct. Thanks for catching it.

                    • K. Fields says:

                      You’ve brought up some interesting points throughout this exchange, but in a discussion of whether Walmart (or any company) is “right” to cut employee hours to the point where the employees will qualify for Medicaid thus relieving the company from having to contribute to health insurance, you must see that bringing up the company’s 1st quarter profits is in no way a straw man argument.

                      Although it’s impossible for me to calculate what it would cost Walmart to give more of their US employees full-time work and contribute to their health care, with an average profit of over $16 billion a year over the last 3 years (that’s AFTER paying an average income tax of $7.8 billion by the way), the company certainly wouldn’t be posting losses.

                      And, by the way, I actually do know what those big numbers mean.

                    • oldguy52 says:

                      If working there is so bad then those employees owe it to themselves to go work somewhere else. They could perhaps band together and start their own A to Z Mart or something if they feel they could do better. Maybe they should hire you, K Fields, to manage it for them, since you seem to have so many easy answers.

                      If I didn’t know better, I might almost think there’s some socialists hanging out on this blog.

        • Shades of Green says:

          where is that in the mandate about the employer being charged? I would like to read that. I did read it when it first came out but I thought the employee would be taxed if their company offers insurance to them and they refuse it. We pay 75 % of our employees insurance only and they are responsible for the rest and all of the spouse or family coverage, I do not have to pay that and by law I only have to offer to pay 50% of the employees. If something has changed and you have that info I would greatly appreciate it.

          • JP in MT says:

            Let’s all remember that as the “Affordable Care Act” becomes law, that we will “find out what’s in it.” The rules and regulations are still being written. Even after they are written, what will be enforced may very well be significantly different. If we are speaking from actual experience, please continue to do so. If you can reference the section of the law, or the appropriate regulation, please do so. If you are speaking from opinion and speculation, based upon your “understanding” or “something you heard”, please state it as such.

            This is, and is become more and more, a decisive issue. Neither side spoke the whole truth when deciding on this bill and the majority of those who voted for such a sweeping change in our lifestyles didn’t feel the need to personally read or write it.

            It’s time to separate the facts from the opinions. Since we are generally like minded here, this seems to be a great place to start.

            “But that’s just my opinion. I could be wrong.” (Dennis Miller)

            • worrisome says:

              Jp look for my answer later today on this

            • worrisome says:

              JP I am not giving “opinions”, I have been working on this for many many months………

              • JP in MT says:

                My comment was not directed at anyone; I’m sorry if it came out that way. I’m not accusing anyone of making stuff up. I’m just trying to head off some of the “rougher” opinions. Many people are having actual experience with what’s happening. I’d just like to make sure we all know when someone is talking from experience, investigation, or speculation and opinion.

                Again, I’m not saying that anyone’s information is incorrect, just that we might want to insure that others understand where we get our information.

                • worrisome says:

                  JP didn’t take it wrong….just wanted you to know that I have been working on it…….and can add to the knowledge base as needed. ………..

          • worrisome says:

            Shades of Green…here is how it will work…
            1. First of all it depends upon the size of the company we are discussing… Under 50 employees have a different set of rules…AND in certain states, if they are not setting up their own exchanges, 2014 will be the same as last year pretty much because the Feds are not going to have the time to set up plans for businesses in this class…In California, there will be a possible solution for small businesses.

            I am going to give you some websites based here in California, but the laws that govern are from ObamaCare. I am using them only because I know where they are and don’t have to do a bunch of research to get you some information.
            2. If you have a group of over 50 there is another set of rules.
            3. And if you have a group over 500, here in this state at least, they are trying to pass a law that states that if you employ a person from more than 12 hours per week, 45 days in a year, AND they apply for MediCal (medicaid)……the employer will be fined……….at this time, there is no disclosure of what that fine will be. It is designed to go in effect 1/15/2015 and was aimed at Target and Walmarts………but they are getting lots of business heat from California domiciled firms that have that many employees but will move out of state if this happens. I digress however as this last situation applies only to about 1% of businesses in Calif.
            Now for some websites that will help.

            The biggest issue at the moment is that many states are NOT going to set up their own exchanges and that is forcing the Feds into setting them up for them. The best article on this information I have found is a US News Article written in May. That can be found here:

            This site:
            http://www.healthexchange.ca.gov/Pages/Default.aspx this is the site that explains the intent and ways and means to set up exchanges. This website is why Cali is going to be able to offer both individual and small group coverage in year 1. The Feds are so far behind that they have no date certain when it will roll out their plan for small group coverage at all. There is a lot of great info here, that covers individuals and businesses of all sizes and explains the plans. The plans are the template for what will be happening nationally.

            http://www.coveredca.com/ This site is the site offering all the latest information as regards signing up for coverage. There is also a calculator that you can use to help gauge how much it will cost you relative to your income, number of folks in the household and your age and give you an idea of how much the Federal government will be subsidizing you in year one. The calculator is just for individuals that might want to sign up, does nothing for us business owners.

            Now, as for businesses with more than 50 workers. If you are dropping your group health plan here is how the math works… say you have 150 employees. You get a 30 employee waiver. All employees working 30 hours or more are included in this formula. Anyone working under 30 hours per week are not elligible for insurance under your plan. So let us say that all 150 employees are full time – less 30=120. If you Do Not have a plan……..the Feds are going to tax you $2000 x 120. Separately as a business owner of a group of 50 or more, you can’t ask your employee to contribute more than 9.5% of their income, otherwise, they will qualify for the exchange AND the Feds will then come to you at year end and ask you for $3000 for that employee. I believe that under ObamaCare, they are mandating that you contribute at least 60% towards the employee only premium, my firm also contributes much more than that, at least at this present time.

            Separately, if you as an individual are not covered under any employer plan, you will be taxed $95 for year one……….more information here..if you DO NOT sign up on the exchange.

            There is a book out as well, called the ObamaCare Survival Guide, which gives great advice and does a good job explaining the fines, fees, over the next few years… Hard to do this on the blog 🙂

            Yes, there are some rules and regs still fluctuating, but the meat of the matter is “out there”…. There is also still thin hope that it will just go away by some hook or crook, but candidly, time is getting short and by Oct 1 2013, no matter how many employees you have, you are supposed to explain it all to them……………

            Hope I helped and haven’t just “confused” more.

            Just for the record? As I have been all over here on this blog talking about this? I know what I know because I am an officer in a company and it will be my job to get us through it. My company’s size is somewhere between 100 and 499 employees. I have been researching, learning, going to seminars, talking to brokers, etc for many many months!

            Good luck and if there is anything else I can offer in the way of support, I will do. Since I don’t know how many employees you have this is as general as I can get.

            • K. Fields says:

              Thanks for posting all this information – it’s very helpful – and I’m glad to hear how well your company treats their employees without being “forced” to do so.

              • worrisome says:

                K. Fields………we treat our employees as well as we can…however we also have an existential responsibility to stay in business and to make sure we can cover their paychecks which takes care of shelter, food and transportation needs first. We will reach a bottom line here a some point soon and make a business decision on where we can afford to go as relates to benefits.

                We are no different than any other business out there. And just for the record, we operate on about a 1% margin annually with a growth the last few years of about .3% – .4%……That is directly the result of stupid legislation in Sacto as regards EPA standards; taxes at both the fed and state level; the bad economy; and other “market forces”…………..if we could, we would leave the state.

    • Lantana says:

      Prayers for your mom, Ladyhawthorne, and for your work situation.

    • Here in poor southern NJ, most job listings are part time, even office jobs. Healthcare costs are skyrocketing. Most hospitals letting go doctors plus therapists who are at top of payscale. Insurance costs going up and up. Private pay insurance is way out of reach, around $1100/month for what I had. (Insurance plans are super $ in liberal states.) No doubt plenty of people won’t be able to afford Obamacare insurance even if supplemented. Gosh, ya’d think the idea is to get everybody on Medicaid.

      • worrisome says:

        Mari, that is another issue out here in California. As they set up exchanges, large insurers that are willing to join in, sent new contracts to the medical professions to sign up as part of the new insurance networks. But, on many these contracts they did not specify how much they were going to pay the providers for their services. As I understand it, at the moment, most providers are holding out on signing until there are prices on them. Certain areas/county wide in some cases are refusing to sign on to exchange contracts until there is more clarity as they can’t necessarily afford to run offices and buy medical malpractice insurance and budget for staff without knowing.

        Most Cali doctors already ask where you are insured before they will take you as new patient. If you are in the MediCal program or on Medicare without a subsidy, the doctors may not take you on. Most medical groups are now trying to set up a “clinic” approach attached to hospitals to cover this need. It is not going particularly well.

        • Worrisome & Mari;
          My ds works for a hospital. Originally it was run by Catholic Nuns as a non profit, then it incorporated, with board of directors, then the sisters literally had no say in the day to day operations. Now it is run by a larger corporation, that is where with tdl’s health care plan comes to fruition.
          Recently they closed all of their blood drawing stations that were in the outlying areas, and the one inside the hospital. It was set up where employees families could go to the hospital, get their blood drawn there, and all lab cost were covered by the hospital. Now, well it is anybodies guess what is going to happen.
          Yes, you guessed it with the closing of the blood drawing stations so went all those jobs, an at the hospital…..well they have down sized their personnel. The cuts may just have begun, at this date there could be more in just a few short months………it is now a oh, crap, wait and see mode.
          We have just begun to guess, let alone see what they have done to keep the masses in line.

          • worrisome says:

            Becky, businesses, this includes hospitals and doctors are positioning themselves for survival. As services figure out what they can afford to continue or not, we are going to be driving farther, waiting longer to get in to those who are still doing whatever it is we need.

            • worrisome;
              You are correct, and my ds is worried that when the next rounds for trimming the lean off the staff she could be next. She has less than 10 years with this hospital, so who knows. I have spent many a night worrying about her job. They have a business which they are building & her dh works in their shop and he does not take a salary just so they can pay the bills and employees. This socialist medical system is going to be the final straw on the business in Ca and other states.

      • oldguy52 says:

        “Gosh, ya’d think the idea is to get everybody on Medicaid.”

        I;’m no expert on this situation, but it seems to me the plan must be to let this play out ’til it’s obviously unworkable and then ram through single payer.

        Single payer is what the real statists wanted in the first place, but nobody would go for it.

        Anything to get us as dependent as possible on ‘ol uncle sugar.


        • Winomega says:

          The insurance thing… how do the…. can’t even remember if it’s the British or someone else…. but other than a social obligation to take care of themselves, how do they manage state healthcare?

          What is the best solution to the current problem, the ones who can pay cover the cost of the people who can’t? That puts a gulf of people who could pay if the costs were normal.

          Either way, start by paying off the education costs of anyone who manages to become a proper doctor.

          • oldguy52 says:

            The best way would be for you to pay for your healthcare and I’ll pay for mine, in cash, directly to the doctor. You can see the damage already caused by too much gov’t intervention in health care.

          • Winomega,
            Simply allowing companies to purchase insurance in the free market across state lines, which is currently illegal, and tort reform to stop the malpractice lawsuits for trivial things would be a good start. We currently don’t have market forces involved nationwide, which would help a lot. Tort reform would also stop doctors from practicing as much defensive medicine.

            • worrisome says:

              Ohio Prepper you may be right as to having access to insurance in any state. Can you imagine just the savings in administrative costs? No separate insurance dept in every state; area managed claims; standardization of medical charges……………………but no…………..we have . this. mess!

              • worrisome,
                I know that some years ago before Glenn Beck moved to TX and was stilloperating in NY, he mentioned that there was a PA based insurance company who could offer his company better coverage for less money, but under Federal Law, were not allowed to write insurance in NY.

          • Kelekona, look at Ben Carson’s proposal for Healthcare Savings Accounts. Taking the middlemen out of the equation both lowers costs and can stimulate the economy–and those rising tides will lift all boats.

          • worrisome says:

            Winomega, Canda/Britain and such pay for the health care by having extremely high sales national sales taxes. They also have a waiting list to get a primary care physician AND for many specialties, you can wait a long time to get a surgery done…

          • I could be wrong so dont quote me on this, but I have heard that canada will fly pregnant women down here to deliver their babies because everything is so backed up there. And Tom has a perfect example of how ‘free’ it is.

            The entire medical system is a joke, and then get the government involved, what have they touched that turned out so good they feel the need to get involved with everything else?

            Although I do have a question, I cant afford health insurance, does that mean I am going to be ‘required’ to get state care or pay a fine? And if I were to get state care are they going to put the mandates on that that they do for childrens medicaid? I am not as familiar with adult medicare so I dont know how they have that done. But with the childrens coverage you have to take your kids in for certain check ups or risk losing medicaid.

            Now my question has me puting my foil hat on, since I know that you have to show up for check ups, are they then going to start mandating certain procedures or risk losing your medical coverage or getting a huge fine?

            I dont know, this whole thing is a mes.

            • JeffintheWest says:

              I think if you can’t afford it, it gets provided to you at everyone else’s expense. The problem is that they will probably decide you make enough money that you CAN afford it, you just have to stop buying anything else. If you don’t meet their “poverty” qualification, then you either buy the insurance (at rates that will go up significantly if they haven’t already) or you pay the fine — which a lot of people are thinking about doing since it seems to be about a third of what the insurance will actually cost you. One thing, since they ruled out any kind of “pre-existing condition” limits, that means you can literally decide to get insurance while you’re in the ambulance on the way to the Emergency Room. So you could just pay the fine until a condition comes up, then get insurance, then after it’s all over, drop the insurance and go back to paying the fine.

              Of course the problem with all of this is that health insurance companies will be driven to bankruptcy in short order by that sort of thing — which, come to think of it, is probably what TDL wants anyway, since that will force everyone onto a single-payer system and that’s been the agenda all along.

              • worrisome says:

                Jeff, they are going to close the loop hole on buying it when you need it after the first open enrollment period for 2014. That enrollment will be from 10/1/2013 to March 2014. Then you will be without coverage until the next open enrollment period. However, this will not apply if you are in the under 133% of poverty level, they will just put you in Medicaid or in our case MediCal. At least that is what they are saying they will do with “clean up” legislation here in Cali…

                And yes, the “agenda” is single payer……….no doubt.

            • Winomega says:

              TG, that is something pretty dark to think about.

              I think vaccines are a good thing, but I respect the people who think that vaccines are poison, and certainly don’t think any procedure should be forced.

            • worrisome says:

              Tg I will try to fill you in tonight when I get home from work

            • worrisome says:

              TG, on an individual, this is how it will work.
              Yes, you will be required to get insurance. If you don’t, your “tax” will be $95 for the first year, more each subsequent year. Depending upon your income your premium will be subsidized for the next three years, less so each year.
              If you are 133% of poverty level or less, you will be funneled into Medicaid. From 133% of poverty level to 400% of poverty level you will be able to buy insurance guaranteed on the exchange and have some subsidies depending upon your annual income. Over 400% you can buy on the exchange as an individual but you will have no subsidy.
              There will be 4 plans to choose from. Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum. You will only be able to get subsidies if you pick the Silver plan. If you go to some of the websites I have shown above that are already open here in California you can get an idea or two of how much to budget for.

              No, unless you qualify for Medicaid, there are no mandates…….and a good part of all this is that all of the “well care” stuff is paid at 100%. Meaning, your annual physical, regular tests for your age, pap smears and mammograms for women are all inclusive in that. For men, it is the same including the PSA test.

              As far as Medicaid, I have not heard what the state of Calif is doing there are regards “share of costs” and mandates. I have been busy making sure the employees at my firm are a. covered one way or another and b. that I we don’t go bankrupt doing it!.

              • Worrisome, thanks. From the calculator you posted it said that I would be on medcal. So now I have to figure out what texas is doing and see if there is a way around it. I do wonder, if I am ‘forced’ to enroll, what would happen if I just dont go to the doctor or refuse testing and all that. I may be ‘poverty’ level but it doesnt mean I want someone else paying my bills.

        • How stupid is government health care? I’t give an example.

          In 1977 I came down with infectious hepatitis in India. I flew to London and checked into the St Pancras Hospital for Tropical Diseases. I spent better than a week there. When I checked out I asked for the bill.

          Guess what? I had no bill. It was ‘free’. Well, unless you were an English taxpayer. I wasn’t a citizen, and I didn’t even get sick in their country. All I had to do was show up sick.

          At the same time, women were flying in from Spain to get abortions. “Free” abortions. Free for the Spanish women, not so free for the English taxpayers. I guess actually the British taxpayers.

          As I recall Thatcher put an end to that idiocy, but that idiocy was created by the people who advocate government health care.

          Much like “free’ care is advocated for illegal aliens in the US today. We apparently have a moral obligation to provide ‘free’ healthcare for people who are here only because they have no respect for our laws.

          Given the way we enforce those laws, why should they respect them? It’s pretty clear that our Enlightened Leaders don’t.

        • worrisome says:

          Old guy…that is exactly the game plan.

        • That’s what I think, too.

    • S'wt Tater says:

      Dehydrate the zucchini, in slices, they make great veggie chips.

  35. Goatlover says:

    Did a bit of canning this week. Took an inventory of my seeds and was SHOCKED at how many I have! ;o) I do believe I could plant most of this county in vegetables. Also took inventory of my mason jars, both full and empty—there’s over 400 of them now. Just another hundred or so and I will feel like I have enough. That’s especially true since I have 500 of those re-usable Tattler Canning Lids.

    Finally got in the last medical item I ordered a couple of weeks ago–sterilized suturing kits. Medical stuff is my weak point in preps.

    I did the “shuffle them goats” thing last week, now that the two does I wanted bred are done. Bucks are back in the buck yard, and the main Doe Barn got a thorough cleaning. These two girls will be my milkers starting in November. I’m still milking two does from last fall’s kidding and haven’t been without fresh goat’s milk now in over two years. Gotta stagger those kiddings to keep it flowing…when the SHTF, I’ll be breeding more does more often and using the kids for barter!

    Keep preppin’,

    • Suedaprepperlady says:

      Goatlover~~ Would you mind sharing some of the sites youhave been ordering medical supplies from? I amtrying to build up a large medical kit….thanks!

      Keep those preps coming….

    • Millie in KY says:

      Goatlover, glad to see you here, don’t think I’ve seen you post before. We have around 14 goats but I am downsizing some. I love my goats, too, and although I don’t currently milk, they are here for when SHTF.

  36. Got a good deal on canning jars at a yard sale. Full boxes of pints for $1 a box. The nice lady said if I bought 4 she would through one in for free, so bought all the boxes 6 total and she through in the extra rings she had. Gave her a couple extra dollars as it was such a good deal. She was 78 years old and a real dear, she even gave me some pointers on canning.

    We now have more chickens in the freezer. One more batch to take care of and the chicken section of the freezer will be full. We added a few more hens to our layers and got a roster too so hopefully can have our own little chicks. Our ds and other half added turkey’s to the flock and we’ll be looking into pigs.

    Spent Father’s day weekend with the kids and grandkids. Taught them how to start a fire with the flint. They did really good and took pride in learning a new skill. And teased gramma a bit, after all how many have a gramma that can teach you how to start a fire with just a flint.

    Garden is doing good, or as grandson says “Wow the garden is big!”
    Won’t be long till canning season starts.

  37. Lantana says:

    Where’s our Schametti? I’ve got volunteer basil popping up, and they make me think of her and smile each time I see them.

    Y’all, once lemon balm flowers, is it too late to cut it to dry or tincture?

    A small victory to share: planted a berry bush two years ago–last year, nothing (probably was putting down roots), this year, still small but set fruit. . . didn’t ripen, didn’t ripen, started discovering missing fruit–and a couple of smug-beaked birds loitering–still nothing for us. . . til a few days ago. . . .

    Now we’re getting a couple of handfuls every day. I’m so tickled!

    • JeffintheWest says:

      Hey, congrats! You might want to look into some of that bird netting for your berry bush as it gets bigger!

    • Rider of Rohan says:

      Amy(Schametti) made one post last week, and that was it. She never answered a question I asked her, which is very unusual. I’m worried for some reason, I know her mom has recently had surgery. I’m praying nothing has gone wrong.

      • JeffintheWest says:

        I could have sworn she mentioned in some post or another that she was going to be out of pocket for a couple of weeks (going some place she couldn’t regularly get internet, if I recall the problem correctly) but would get back in touch with us all when she got back.

        Now you’ve got me worrying! 😉

        • JeffintheWest;
          That was a couple of weeks ago, she was staying with her aunt. Then the next thing she was taking care of her mom from the surgery, so if she is not posting she might have her hands full taking care of her mom recovery.
          If we do not hear from her soon we will have MD email her directly.

    • worrisome says:

      Ya know? We are all becoming worry warts about each other…I so miss some of those that never post any more and wonder if they are alright. I am hoping she is ok too.

      • S'wt Tater says:

        I read a post on here from her earlier, ..I didn’t check the date, but I think it was this evening…

    • You can still use the lemon balm it just want be at peak streanth .

  38. t42n24t2 says:

    First, you guys are inspiring.

    This week The Encyclopedia of Country Living came, and it is so good. My garden beds needed rearranged due to crowding (over planted and underestimated some plants new to me.) My cukes have flowers, and the herb beds have really taken off. Finally joined Sam’s Club, but GFS is still wonderful for prepping. After two days, the Solar Resolve XL has yet to fully charged. Using PC and sun combo.

    You all make me aware of security and other possibilities. All of my #10 cans are now disguised as documents. Even though I intend to shelter in place, I am now making lists and plans in case I do have to bug out someday.

  39. Continuing Operation Organization – Got my gazillion pairs of old eye glasses together and cleaned up to donate to the Lion’s Club. Also purchased some garden seed for storage from local feed and seed store. The prices locally on heirloom seeds are dirt cheap compared to ordering on line. Filled some prescriptions for the stockpile. Also purchased canning jars in preparation for some canning of meat this coming week. O, love sage so finally after a year was able to get some purple sage and am nurturing the 3 different varieties I have in my battle with the pests.

  40. Winomega says:

    MD, BTW, you never stop making car payments. The payment schedule just become sporadic. (In the form of maintenance and repair.)

  41. Southern Girl says:


    Thanks for the Sam’s tip. We do have a Sam’s here. I had to stop shopping there years ago. Spent too much money on items I didn’t need. Will try them again now that no kids at home to feed.


    I saw your comment to TNMom about the Firehouse Subs buckets. Guess you just have to buy the lids. Thanks. Do pass one everyday on way to work. Will try them too.

    Thanks to all for the help.


  42. Granny Em says:

    I’m so happy to hear your good news ! my prayers will continue to be with both of you.

    I finally got ALL of my garden planted today…all heirloom plants. A woodchuck or rabbit ate several broccalli plants last night and snapped off one of my tomato plants.Hopefuuly, he won’t come back before we get the fence up.

    Question for the Wolf Pack : How much dirt should I have put on my potato plants ? We dug a ditch with the tiller for our sweet potatoes and I had some room left in the row, so I put in some sprouted store potatoes with just an inch of soil on them. I plan to fill in the ditch as they grow. Is that correct ? I haven’t ever planted regular potatoes before because I live in spud country and usually just glean the neighbor’s fields.

    Otherwise, I just replaced canned goods this week and will freeze strawberries and make jam tomorrow.
    Have a great week, all !

    • Ganny Em;
      As the plant grows up fill in the dirt around the stem up to the leaves. Until you have nice mound, after the leaves die back you can start the harvest of the potatoes. Just to let you know you can use potatoes from the store but they are spray with a preservative to keep them fresh longer, unless you purchased organic or natural potatoes. Next year plant them in a different spot to make sure you have no contaminated soil .

    • S'wt Tater says:

      Yep, just keep the dirt up around them as they grow, they produce all along the stem. when they bloom, it should be about 20-30 days, just check them from the side of the hill.make sure they get enough water when they are blooming, but don’t drown them.

      • Granny Em says:

        Becky and S’wt Tater,
        Thanks for the tips. We practically needed a rowboat to get into the garden two weeks ago, but the promised rain didn’t show for the last 4 days and I will water everything today, in time for the plants to dry out by sunset. I’ll remember to plant the potatoes in a different spot next year. I usually do that with the tomatoes. I’ve tried to follow the Companion Planting guide, but it’s been hard keeping “enemies” apart. I made sure the hot and sweet peppers were far apart, since I heard the hot will make the sweet bitter, and I have marigolds and petunias scattered in the rows. Also, my son found a spray to ward off the deer and the bunnies.

  43. I completed my handgun safety class today which is required in this state to get a concealed carry permit. I’m picking strawberries in the morning for jams, dehydrate, and freeze. I usually get enough to last the year. I bought an ammo can and a new holster.

  44. Southern Mama says:

    Hi everyone! I have been reading these posts for a while and decided it was time for me to join in! I have learned so much from ya’ll (yes, I’m from the South!). I have been prepping for about 2 1/2 years now. Times have not been easy, so sometimes it is slow going , but doing the best I can. My husband passed away suddenly about 2 1/2 years ago, I became even more aware of the strong possibity of economic collapse and that I needed to do something to start preparing for me and my son. I am thankful I am able to work fulltime, and my son helps me so much here on the place. Thankful that I live in the country. Would not want to live in the city with the bad times that are ultimately coming. I have managed to stock up a good bit of canned food and have starting adding some long term food storage and heirloom seeds,medical supplies,etc.. I love to garden but because of RA have had to dial back from large gardens like I have always had to smaller more manageable ones. Having RA makes everyday a challenge, but I try to stay as positive as I can and keep as active as this horrid disease will allow. I have purchased a new canner, and eventho I haven’t canned in years, I am going to give it a try again. Put up a couple dozen jars of dill pickles and cinnamon pickles last week and put about a dozen bags of squash in the freezer. Trying to stockpile some jars and canning lids, planning to get some of the reusable lids when I can. This week I ordered a 5 gallon bucket of sliced, dehydrated potatoes, 5 gallon bucket of oatmeal and several cans of powdered milk. Would love any ideas from you guys who are prepping on a budget too. God bless you all, and may you all have a good week.

    • Welcome, Southern Mama. What are cinnamon pickles?

      We have several people who have been widowed, and several others battling RA, so you will find many who understand from personal experience.

      • Southern Mama says:

        You use the big cucumbers, peal and cut a circle to remove the seeds, soak in lime for 24 hours, rinse well and make a mixture of red hot candies and sugar and water bath them. I think they call them “mock apple rings”. They are good, just a bit time consuming to make. Glad to join ya’ll! Love all ya’ll’s post and have definitely learned lots, and much more to learn!

        • What a fun recipe! Sounds like a great way to use the tough cukes that escape notice til they’re overgrown. Thanks, Southern Mama!

          • Southern Mama says:

            Your welcome! Google “mock apple rings” and you’ll find the correct measurements for the recipe. They are such a pretty red color, sweet with the taste of cinnamon.

    • Have you tried raised bed gardening? If you allow a wide enough walkway between the beds, you can sit on a plastic stool while digging with a hand trowel (no bending over with rake or hoe and no stooping to pick vegies) and because you don’t walk on the soil, it stays soft and easy to work. If your walkways are wide enough and covered with straw to keep down the weeds and mud, even a person stuck in a wheelchair can do light gardening.

      • t42n24t2 says:

        I agree with that. My land is just too hard to dig, so raised beds are the way to go. I get my Grow Beds from Gardeners Supply, but they have raised beds that are designed to allow you to garden standing up. They are a reliable business. http://www.gardeners.com
        BTW, their Grow Beds are very easy to assemble and last.

        • Southern Mama says:

          Thank you! I will check them out. I think they would make gardening beds much more easy to manage.

      • Southern Mama says:

        I am considering the raised beds, I am doing pretty good right now, but definitely I might consider for the future. Grass is my main culprit, not as easy to use a hoe when my wrists get flared up pretty good.

        • I sit on an old bucket to pull weeds and pick green beans. That definitely helps with my back.

    • Southern Mama, yup, the RA can really toss in a monkey wrench and slow ya down. Do you have any raised garden beds. I’ve got RA too and that’s the way I’ll have to go next year.

      • Southern Mama says:

        Some others have suggested that too. Thinking I might just have to put some of those in. Sounds like a good idea even for people who don’t have arthritis problems. Love the idea of keeping grass and weeks under control.

        • A good way to “compartmentalize.” I’m also thinking of laying down WeedX between the raised beds on dumping in mulch.
          The New Square Gardener now says 1/3 each of Vermiculite, peat moss, compost (5 kinds no less). I’d be luck to come up with 2 kinds of compost, and I’d probably use some sterilized top soil instead of all compost for initial set-up.
          I’ve got trees (not ours) on 2 sides of garden (north and east), so I’ll have messy leaves to contend with in the Fall. Fallow beds can be covered with WeedX, those late planted would get Reemay-type covers anyway. Hee Hee.

    • axelsteve says:

      Hello southern Mama it is nice to see your post. You just reminded me of how my grandma would pickle watermellon rinds. I loved those things. You get lots of rind from a watermellon. She was not southern ,from Kansas though I loved he pickles.

      • Southern Mama says:

        I have never made watermelon rind pickles, but I have tried them before and they are really good! Might be a future project!

        • Winomega says:

          I was fascinated with watermelon pickle from a book of poetry that my HS library owned. Why they picked that poem to provide the title…..

          Last watermelon had such a thin rind that the only preserving I did was freezing for blender cocktails.

          I bought another watermelon, seeded this time. Wish me luck on finding something worth pickling.

    • worrisome says:

      Welcome. You will find lots of folks here willing to help out with suggestions. Glad you are finally speaking up, I am sure you will add to the knowledge base!

      • Southern Mama says:

        Thank you, I have enjoyed ya’ll’s posts so much. Look forward to learning and sharing with all of you also.

  45. I put more food & water in our storage supply. & ordered another survival book. Also read One Second After.

  46. moonstone says:

    BC,If you have Faith nothing shall be impossible for you.Mathew 17:20 God bless you and your Beautiful wife.

  47. Indiana joe says:

    Well I am working on the most important prep.. Physical health. Have been lifting and cardio but today I got a bench and I am looking forward to getting a strength routine. This weekend I am learning about my new pressure canner and canning veggies and meats. Any suggestions would be helpful. As always happy prepping!

    • Do read the instruction book that came with your canner very carefully and follow the directions. Most instruction books also have some basic recipes in them to get you started — do follow the recipe guidelines exactly — no shortcuts. Make sure you are using new or relatively new canning jars and always use brand new lids. Never try to pressure can with any jar that has flaws (air bubbles in the glass, little cracks, chips on the rim) or you could have a jar explode inside the canner and the loose food inside the canner could prevent the other jars from developing a good seal as well as stopping up the pressure release valve). It is very important that your jars and your lids are both clean and sterile and your instruction book will tell you the best way to accomplish this. Make sure you have a canning funnel, a lid lifter and a jar lifter – these inexpensive items can help keep you from getting burned/scalded when handling hot things. Do wear a full apron (BBQ apron) when canning as this will also help keep you safe if you slosh hot food or boiling water down your front.

  48. Wild Weasel says:

    Just floated in my 18,000 gal water tank (pool). Was anniversary weekend just was lazy this weekend. It’s good to take some time off. Back at it next week!

  49. midnight1st says:

    This week the main job was getting the pergola built on which the grapes will be planted this fall. It turned out to be really pretty. Because we have so much shade and such diverse terrain, we have to be really inventive about where we can plant. Because the pergola is so high, it will catch the best sun, and we will be looking directly down on it from the deck. I figure if the food raiders come, they won’t be looking for food on a piece of garden art!

    Got in a new book, The Green Pharmacy, by Duke. It’s about using herbs, and so far it is really good. It has really good info about the plants and which plant, along with substitute plants, to use for what condition. The author is an ethnobotanist complete with PhD, so he’s got science behind him for those who sometimes comment here who are snarky about using herbs.

    Planted the beans to go with the corn for my three sisters garden. Picked squash, pole beans, and onions and dug the potatoes. We have had three whole meals out of the garden this week! Just wish that the tomatoes would get ready. Picked two gallons of blueberries. I’m enjoying this mini-farming. This is the first time that I have really been serious about it, and it surely is much work. I really am concerned about folks who think they can just start growing when they have to. It will be a shock.

    Got some lamp oil, two small hand seeders (because I’m such a clutz with tiny seed), two laundry plungers, and six cans of Red Feather butter.

    Have a productive week ya’ll.

  50. I pulled all the boxes of vacuum canned dry goods out of closets and cabinets and put them in one area for checking the seals and then re-organizing what types of food would go into which box, since previously I had just loaded vacuum-sealed jars of food into boxes with whatever I happened to dehydrate that day or got when grocery shopping. So I’m in the middle of sorting 20 boxes each filled with a dozen quart jars, 24 boxes of a dozen each pint jars, plus a few boxes of pint-and-a-half jars and half gallon jars. Will have to stick a new list of contents on the outside of each box so I can find stuff easily before putting the boxes back in storage.

    During day one (yesterday) of lid-checking, I discovered somewhere between 3 and 5% of the jar lids had lost their vacuum seal — usually the earlier ones (I date the labels) I had vacuum sealed using only oxygen absorbers or had sealed using the first FoodSaver I bought (that one failed after the 1st week of use). Of those that failed after being sealed with my second Food Saver, it was mainly powdery food such as baking mix, pancake mix and Nestle Chocolate Quick and a check of the lids showed a little powdery food residue on the rubber rings under the lids. So I guess sometimes my technique of wiping down rims and inside necks of jars is less that it should be. All these jars re-sealed fine after the rims were freshly wiped and the lids freshly washed and dried.

    I made the last of the four entrees from the Legacy sampler pack two days ago. This one was called Classic Chili Mix and called for 8 cups of water and 20 to 25 minutes of simmering to make 4 servings of 330 calories each. The cooking instructions recommended adding chopped meat, so I put in 6 oz of cooked, sliced chorizo. At the 20 minute point I had a mildly flavored, medium thickness chili type sauce with some beans and chozio that was mildly flavored (something you could safely feed to your toothless great granny who has delicate digestion)– more of a chili bean soup than a bowl of chili. So I added a pint of home-dehydrated Bush’s beans in chili sauce, a teaspoon of Mexican oregano, 1/4 tsp California ground red pepper and 1 tablespoon comino (cumin) and simmered it for another 20 minutes. Ended up with something the thickness of wet concrete with more beans and better flavor but still not what I am used to when I make chili from scratch. The flavor was still kind of flat but the heat level had improved. Will try to improve the leftovers with the addition of a can of chopped tomatoes. Bottom line — Legacy chili doesn’t pass my taste test, even when I add extra stuff to bring up the flavor and it’s a lot more expensive than made-from-scratch chili.

    I am still watering my container gardens morning, noon and early evening to keep them alive in the heat and blazing sun of the Mojave desert. A few days ago I planted eight seeds of Kentucky Wonder runner beans in each of the four containers that have tall trellises. If these sprout and grow, maybe the vines will provide some light shade for my tomato and potato plants and some extra nitrogen in the potting soil.

    This month I have been giving a lot of thought to making clothing the old fashioned way in a grid down situation. I have the cloth, patterns, scissors, thread, pins, fabric chalk and hand-sewing needles as well as buttons and zippers. But it did occur to me that I didn’t have a sewing bird, since people mostly stopped using these when Mr. Singer started mass producing an affordable treadle-powered sewing machine and they gave up hand sewing. What’s a sewing bird? It’s a metal clamp that screws tightly to a table top and on the top of it is sort of a metal clothes pin, usually made in the shape of a bird. You press the “bird’s” tail feathers together to open its metal beak and stick one end of your cloth there and it acts like a third hand to hold the cloth while you pull the cloth taunt with your non-dominant hand so you can sew a straight seam or hem with a threaded needle held in your dominant hand. So I found a seller on eBay who has solid brass copies if Victorian era sewing birds and took delivery of one last week. I haven’t tried using it yet but it looks like it could get the job done.

    • Winomega says:

      Linda, I can’t remember if it was Shore Lunch or Bear Creek, but they make an edible chili mix. It’s still not spicy and short on beans, but worth a shot.

      I’ve heard about how dust can sometimes foul vacuum-seals on jars. I think that’s why some people use coffee filters.

      Thanks for the tip on the sewing bird. I think I would like to know how to be a tailor once the dust settles. I’m thinking that I should know how to draft patterns, and this is a treasure that I stumbled on recently. http://openlibrary.org/books/OL24157391M/The_standard_work_on_cutting_ladies%27_tailor-made_garments

      • Thank you so much for the link to the hand-sewing/tailoring book. I have bookmarked it under my favorites. You are right about Bear Creek chili and soup mixes – I have vacuum canned some of their products and they are good value for the money. I have gotten smarter about vacuum sealing powdery foods and do sometimes place a paper cupcake liner on top of the food before vacuum sealing (a great tip I saw on someone’s You Tube video).

  51. canadagal says:

    Wow what a few weeks in this world. Was busy worrying & praying for those 70,000 people that had to be evacuated from the fires in Colarado & now we had 70,000 evacuated in Calgary, Alberta due to flooding & now my DH tells me that has been raised to 100,000. The main center of the city is very deep in water and all the way down the system through Alberta,& into Saskatchewan right to the Manitoba Border along the Saskatchewan River system are preparing & evacuating as needed. I also hear a lot of towns in BC have floods & avalanches. I am praying for Snowden too.

    Preps 10 tarps @ 3 ea. lots of canning supplies, fabric on buy 1 m. get 2 free & some 1/2 price, gas grass edger, landscaping fabric & edging 2 shake flashlights, 10 solar lights 1/3 reg price. Garden is coming up well & weeding between rows is done once but it has rained a lot lately so can’t get to pick in rows. Been helping at the museum a far amount lately. I’ve learned a lot there about how pioneers did things so it is good for me as well as the museum.

    BC so glad for your good news. Prayer is powerful.

    My DH got metal in his eye. The nearest big hospital 70 miles away couldn’t remove it so sent us to a specialist another 3 hrs down the road. He was able with a spade & jack all to pry it out. He says he left quite a hole that should grow back in but could make his vision a bit like looking through crazed glass. Hopefully not. Doc. said he is also developing cataracts so he needs to quite driving until that gets them fixed. Please pray that his eyesight will return to normal & that he can get the other surgeries in a timely manner.

    Wish you all well and keep preparing for whatever comes our way.

    • Nice to hear from you, canadagal–will add your DH and the areas in harm’s way to our prayers.

  52. Schametti says:

    Sorry I haven’t been around much the last week guys. From gardening, to dehydrating, to helping my mom, and sleeping a lot in between.. I haven’t been much up for reading and posting, or anything else in my free time.

    Confession Time!! (Sort of).

    We recently had a meeting with our money people, and they had some pretty bleak news for us, the economy, our dwindling balance, blah blah blah.. I don’t know if any of you are familiar with the way Trust’s work, (where we were forced to put our money after DH’s accident, but if you ever have a choice to get one.. run screaming, far in the other direction, lol).. Because all they do is tell you how to live your life, by their rules, and then somehow make you feel like you should be thanking them for their generosity.

    ANYway.. I’m not sure what the game plan from here will be, but it definitely means cutting back on spending as much as possible for awhile, trying to find a way to do other things cheaper than before, doing without some things we were used to, etc.. so.. obviously THAT didn’t make me very happy. I have prepping to do, People!! *Sigh*

    I won’t rant on and on about it, though I probably could, no doubt, lol.. But suffice it to say I’ve been more than a little down the last week, and felt it best to not accidentally drag down any other moods with me. *Hugs* But I’ve missed you guys.

    My mother, for those still curious about how she’s doing.. is doing much better. It took her quite a while to get there.. but now that she’s had three weeks of her new lifestyle under her belt.. she’s noticeably improving. She’s not walking enough, and she’s not drinking enough, but she’s definitely sticking to her diet, (food wise), pretty good so far. Every week I make up her one ounce food cups for the whole week, so that all she has to do is heat them up, so it’s easy for her. She’s still having quite a bit of nausea that she’s hoping will pass.. soon, but so far, it’s being stubborn. Thank You for anyone who’s continuing to pray for her recovery. I appreciate it very much.

    The garden is still blooming and blossoming. We harvested our potatoes this week. And I’ve been dehydrating herbs all darn week, so much cilantro, it’s ridiculous.. lol. The carrots are almost carrots.. 🙂 Another week for them, maaaaybe two, and they should be ready to come out of the ground. (Well, at least the first round of them anyway). I’ve been munching on strawberries, blueberries, and cherry tomatoes regularly, which always makes me happy. There are a couple big, fat red tomatoes alllllmost ripe out there, shouldn’t be long and I’ll be eating them too.

    We’ve harvested bags.. and bags.. and BAGS of mesclun, lettuce, romaine, and arugula.. We’re burried in the stuff. I took my neighbor a HUGE bag, who was delighted, and he gave me all his extra strawberries, which delighted ME. Good Trade. :):) Speaking of trade..

    My bestie and I had our first experience with bartering this week. Since I can’t use my homemade deodorant that I mad, (*insert sad face here*), I gave the two that I made for me to my friend, to give to HER friend.. who is a young living oils representative, and in return, she gave us a bottle of peppermint oil, so now I have the oil to do my soap in a couple weeks. Yay!

    And in other deodorant news, when my mood improves, and my skin heals.. I’m still hoping to make a batch of deodorant with a little less oil, and more starch instead of baking soda and see if that goes better. After the last ordeal, I hesitate to try anything new on my skin, but.. I guess I don’t know until I try it.. so I.mma try and be brave.

    My wrist bow STILL isn’t here. I ordered it TWO and a half weeks ago, AND paid the extra two bucks to move it to the front of the shipping line, but I guess everyone did that, because it’s still M.I.A. I’m getting impatient.. And I’m hoping that it’s not the last cool prepping thing I’ll be able to afford, haha. Oi.

    Oh! One day this week while Angie and I were harvesting, and replanting and spending long hours in the garden, we decided to test out my sport solar oven. We made “Hobo Stew” which aside from the butter and hamburger, everything else came from our garden.. spicy basil, rodemary, an onion, two adorable baby jalapenos, a few young carrots, and a handful of perfect little potatoes. It took about six hours to fully cook, and I think it could have used a little more seasoning, but it was amazing, that we got 80% of it from the ground, and it was cooked by the sun. We were very proud of ourselves. :):):)

    That’s about it for me. I’ll try to be more present here this week, but if I’m not, I’m probably still just stuck in my funk, so don’t worry about me. I always come through, a little stronger, and a little tougher. Life is mean, but I usually win in the end. 😉 Much Love to My Pack. ~ A.

    • Schametti, we were about to send out the search party for you. Don’t not check in on our account–we’ll be happy to give you encouragement, just like we’re happy to hear about your ‘good’ weeks.

      Glad to hear your mom is improving. Hopefully she’s turning the corner and each week will be better and better.

      Recently read about folks making good soups with lettuce. http://suite101.com/article/two-recipes-for-lettuce-soup-a36002 . If you’re drowning in it, you might want to give one of these recipes a try. If the first one is a success for you, it looks like it’d freeze well.

      Also, if you have neighbors with fruit trees or chickens, maybe you could try more ‘lettuce diplomacy’. Heck take an extra bag to everyone in the neighborhood, and see what comes of it. You could even write up an article about that for the contest–and maybe even win one of the prizes!

      • Schametti says:

        Lantana, thank you. *Squishes* I will not hide away again, I promise. (Unless it’s just a busy thing, and not a sad thing). And thank you for the recipes! I just might have to look into that.. we really are swimming in lettuce, and I don’t want any of it to go bad.. My hard work is precious now, every drop I sweat, haha.

        I don’t know what a lot of my neighbors have to be honest. Even my next door neighbor, whome I love.. (and I know he has strawberries, and tomatoes, cause he shares with me every summer), but I don’t know what else he or anyone else around here have. We all have giant privacy fences, and I’ve never been in any of their backyards. I’m totally bummed that we’re not supposed to have chickens.. I would love love love them some day though.. so I’m hoping the ordinances change, or.. the apocolypse happens, and no one cares, lol..

    • worrisome says:

      Glad to hear you are ok, ya had us worried :_)

      • Schametti says:

        Do not worry… even though, it’s in your name, so I’M SURE it’s just like me.. it’s what you DO.. hehe. But I am doing a-okay. Thank You for worrying though. *Hugs*

    • Schameti, not to long ago, I seem to remember someone thinking that her garden was going to die. Sounds like you did, and are doing, an amazing job. I am glad it turned out so well for you.

      We all get into funks now and then, and when you have someone else micro managing it makes those funks justifiable in mho.

      As for the deoderant, dont feel bad, just try new recipes and new ingredients for it. But rather then make up whole batches, try working with teaspons instead. Then test a small amount of it on the inside of your elbow to make sure you have no reaction.
      Also make sure if you are using any essential oils (even ones you would think are safe) that you do a patch test. Put one or two drops in a tsp of oil and then apply a bit to the inside of your elbow. Wait 24 hours and if you have no reaction you are good to go.
      If you can, try shaving away from putting deodorant on. Or at least wait an hour or two. It may help prevent the hair follicles from getting infected again.

      I am going to put this out there, I dont want to offend anyone, but still feel the need to say it. Dont get sucked into young livong essential oils. I am super glad you were able to trade for it, and if you can again in the future great. But please dont let them convince you that ‘only’ their oils are the best. They charge an exuberant amount for pretty much the same quality you can find elsewhere. Ok stepping off my soap box, that no one asked me to step on……

      Glad you are ok and good to hear your mom is doing better.

      • Winomega says:

        Hmmm, underarm shaving. I had problems early on. I don’t shave often, but now I shave down the hairs when I do. (Basically chest to wrist when doing underarms.)

      • Schametti says:

        TG.. :):) You are so right.. a couple months ago, I was sure my garden was DOOMED, and that it was all over but the crying, but I learned, and made more mistakes, and learned, and made more mistakes, and LEARNED, and (Well, I’M STILL making mistakes, and still have much to learn), but things are looking pretty darn good, all things considered. I’m really, really pleased with how my first-ever summer gardening is turning out. Go me. 😛 Haha.

        I agree with you on the living oils. I’ve looked at them, and did note more than once, that the price looks ridiculous. I don’t think I could ever purchase their $150 set of teeny vials of oils, but trading a couple little jars of deodorant seemed like a great trade to me!! I will definitely heed your warning, against buying though, thanks!

        And as for the deodorant, yes.. I plan on making a deodorant batch with less oil, and NO baking powder, and more starch/root and see how that one does for me. I don’t want to give up on the idea entirely, but will definitely tread with much more skin-caution from here.. cause.. ouch!! LOL.

        And thank you for the encouragement, to not run off and hide my somber mood from the group. I will be sure to NOT do that next time. I just hate being all doom and gloom and sadness, and bringing anyone down with me, but I’m feeling better.. and the last week, have made active choices to start saving money when and where we could. It’s just the beginning, of course, and there is still a Trust to fight and bicker with, and an economy to lose to.. but I’ve got my head back on straight, and I know.. I’ll be all right. Thank you for the pep-talk. And I hope your antsy mood improves too!!

    • Rider of Rohan says:

      Well, I was about to give you a whupping for not reporting your whereabouts, young lady. But then I remembered you were a grown up woman and made you own decisions. Hehehe. Just kidding, but I was worried something might have happened to your mom. I see you’ve been real busy.
      As for finances, we’ve all reached that boat. My money I saved for years is paying me next to nothing, and kids in college are expensive to say the least. I will wish you good luck and prosperity, and hope those goofs running your trust are smarter than the ones who are running our family farm trust. We had thousands of dollars of timber cut and didn’t get one red cent, but we did get a bill from the IRS. I know how these trusts work. Of course, the ones doling it out pay themselves very well. Sorry for the rant, you touched a nerve.
      Glad to see your garden producing so well, that’s pretty good gardening for a first-timer. Me proud of you. Take care and see you later, I’m hoping.

      • Schametti says:

        When I was a kid, RoR.. I was always chastised enough with a good verbal whupping, and even those were pretty scarce.. 🙂 So any time you feel like telling me like it is.. I couldn’t think of anyone else I’d rather learn from, so please go right ahead.

        It sounds like your trust people don’t know what they’re doing either. I empathise, my friend. I would like to tell you that your bank account would start earning again for you too, but these days.. goodness, I just don’t know. Scary times. *Hugs* But we’re all in it together.. (the pack, I mean). Not the corporate folks, and wall street bankers.. but.. us little folk, I mean, lol.

    • S'wt Tater says:

      There is a fruit bar that is sugar free, in the frozen treats section at grocery. I used that when I had nausea- it helps get fluids in too. My bariatric surgeon gave us one half of a nytol crushed with a B-50 tablet, 50 mg..he said it was even safe to use in pregnant women. It worked well.place in 1/2- tsp of honey, and it will absorb and be effective very quickly.

      • Schametti says:

        Thank You so much Tater.. My mom is actually going to see her bariatric surgeon tomorrow, for her first post-surgery follow up, so I wrote this down, and texted it to her, and told her to ask about it tomorrow. Hopefully she will be feeling better in no time. Appreciate the advice.. :):):)

  53. Orwellian States says:

    Sort of a slow week. Took delivery of 14 silver maple leaf coins. Ordered a roll of fifty silver dimes. We are getting a good stash of silver/gold coins. I have found Gainesville Coins to be very reliable. I added a boom pole to the parts for the 8 n tractor and used it to lift some downed trees around the garden.. I am slowly into a farmer. This week I added a 120 rounds of .223 the the hoard. I waked into the shop and they had a card table set up with hundreds of round of .223 and 7.62×39. I buy a little of each every week. Of course, we added more basics to the food supplies: vinegar, salt, sugar, olive oil, etc. I met a neighbor from over the ridge — he is like minded about the times we live in. In this area of E TN there seems to be a lot of us. It’s always good to meet folks who have similar points of view.

  54. I’m in the middle of teaching an Appleseed. We have some good shooters this time. But it’s very hot this weekend. Otherwise, really all I’ve accomplished was gardening and to buy a 4 way industrial spigot key. This will allow me to operate one of those water spigots that has no handle, like they put on the outside of commercial buildings. In addition to needing it for a specific project, it’ll be a good urban survival tool; although someone told me I only need one of those 4 sizes generally, so I could get a smaller key in the future and pack lighter. So, now I’m thinking about a tool kit that includes that, a small pry bar, and lock picks. (Only to be used ethically, of course.) Well, again I can’t think of anything else I did, but perhaps I will think of it later.

    • PP,
      Take care with the lock picks. In some jurisdictions mere possession of them without being a license locksmith can be viewed as possession of criminal tools. Just take care.

  55. Oh, yeah, I did find some yarrow growing in the field near the shoot, so I dug one or two of them up for my garden. Yarrow is also known as Soldiers Woundwort, it’s nature’s Quik Clot.

  56. pjwilly says:

    Hi all not a lot this week. Bought some silver, and some replacement food stuff. Have been working in the gardens, the winter squash was flooded 3 times in a week. 2 plants out of 30 might make it its to late to replant now.I am really glad I went to raised beds for everything else. 10 inches of rain in New England in 2 weeks is way to much. All in all can’t complain. Well thats about it Take Care All.

  57. Kermit5575 says:

    Am trying to find the info on the water filter being used in africa by the missionariers, ( for around $50.00 ) that was written about on here, I know I saved the URL for the site but can not find it and I need to get my water filter system ready for the hurricane season. If anyone remembers where it is ( I searched the Bolg) pls let me know.

    • Sorry, I don’t have the URL. I think it was thru the USDA website.

    • tommy2rs says:
    • Hunker-Down says:

      We bought a couple from this place;


      The transaction occurred without incident.

      Since then we decided to go with the Berkey filter, using M/D’s method of 2 five gallon buckets instead of buying the expensive Berkey can. The filters have a much longer shelf life and M’D’s method is MUCH CHEAPER.

    • Kermit 5575

      Look up Sawyer Water Filters. The Sawyer PointONE filter runs about $ 50-60 and can filter around 150 gallons a day. I know people that do medical missionary work in East Africa that use these with good results. I use one of the smaller Sawyer filters and they do the job.

      Bite your tongue about hurricanes. We haven’t had one since 2005 and I am having positive thoughts that will hopefully keep them away.

      • Shades of Green says:


        You can also get a ceramic filter from Cheaperthandirt.com for around 30.00. It filters up to 2000 gals of water per filter. You attach it to two 5 gal buckets . sort of like what Hunker-Down mentioned above. This is what I have. I intend to get another one soon. I also have a water-bob that sits in your tub and holds 100 gals of water. It came with a hose for dispensing the water too. I got that from one of the vendors here.

  58. My only purchases were 2 boxes of 9’s at $29/bx plus 2 bottles of dish detergent on sale to add to rotation.

    Did some organizing of supplies. Good grief, it’s a lot of work, especially while dp sits around doing nothing and I try to work around him and his constantly rolling into town relatives. No wonder I can’t get to the range.

    Still concentrating on getting all medical appts done. I don’t really want to do it but I’ve decided to get infusions for RA for maybe a year. There’s just too much damage from only taking methotrexate. Speaking of which, I made it a point of telling the doc’s PA that if they want me to get infusions, they can darn well sell me a year’s supply of methotrexate. If SHTF, the infusions stop, and I must have a backup plan. Besides, the RA plus really really bad back and hips finally have me almost down and out. Disability, yeah right, not easy to get for the honest applicants.

    Previous employer wants me back for a brand-new position. Not one that I want and it’s totally out of my field, but I have to have insurance. I can’t afford $1100+/month for private plan. So I may be back to work within a few weeks. HR will hopefully agree to my game plan. Just hope I can work awhile yet before I totally fall on my a$$, get a new vehicle, and the SHTF.

    • Oh yeah, and I continued to email NJ assemblypersons re the big anti-gun junk including embedding FID info onto drivers’ licenses. Handy dandy for providing Obamacare more of what isn’t any of its business.
      Bills S2723/A4182 up today in Assembly (11:00) followed by possible changes by Senate (2:00). Whatever they do ain’t gonna be good, so hope Christie vetoes.

  59. DH bought me my first set of camo’s, pants, longsleeve shirt, a warm jacket and two belts – my son’s comment “Have him take a picture and send it to me”.

    Both pulled out our get home bags to see what we each had, and what we might need, mine significantly lighter than his because his get home from his work is 200 miles from home and mine was planned for a two to three day walk home. He did not have enough food, but enough ammo to wage a small war. We will be buying me a larger bag because now we both would potentially have the 200 mile walk home.

    Started working on converting the bicycle baby cart to a potential bug out ‘vehicle’.

    Bought a case each of canned beets, carrots and broth. Went to dinner last night at Red Robin before seeing Iron Man 3 (my choice of movie) and loved the Red Robin seasoning so much, bought two 16 oz bottles, one for home, one for preps. I’ll bet that stuff could make caca taste OK.

    DH bought ‘Patriots’ for some light reading 🙂

    Made a huge batch of hamburger stroganoff with white rice instead of noodles for homemade MRE’s (thank you all for the great ideas), and have it in the dehydrator now.

    Prayers of love, abundance and great health to all who need it (God knows who you are).

  60. Not a ton this week, used some of my prepping money to outfit our newest addition so she had the required scrubs for her job. I’m constantly amazed at her sunny attitude. And some of the bits and pieces I heard about her life, makes me want to hunt some ppl down.

    I renewed my CCL this week. Picked up a pocket saw for my GHB. Fired up the dehydrator for the extra parsley that we are getting. Harvested another round of broccoli, which is not in the dehydrator.

    Discussed with DH ways to harden our little beat up toyota truck.

    Biggest prep for me was my 3 month follow up from my lasix surgery. I’m happy to report that I’m released, barring any problems in the next nine months I’m not on regular eye check ups!

    Prayers for all that are in need. So glad to hear of good reports from surgeries, etc. Stack it high while you can prices continue to climb.

  61. Mrs.K in MO says:

    Not much prepping ,as in buying stuff, this week. To many other things I have had to spend $ on lately. So I’ve been prepping my mind (that’s free) by reading. On a suggestion from someone in the pack, I am reading the book “One Second After”. A novel about EMP. Pretty good so far. Also been tending the garden, chickens etc. Everyday stuff. Hubby put up a clothesline. Haven’t had one in years. Looking forward to saving on elec. bill. Prayers and Praises to everyone above. Have a great week Pack!

  62. Winomega says:

    Hey MD, all my subscriptions suddenly went pop again… not sure how to re-click the box when it isn’t there.

  63. Nancy V. says:

    The 2013 Super Moon occurred on June 22 – it was huge and beautiful in the night sky, which was a blessing because it has been a rough week for a lot of folks, including myself.

    But according to the cheerful, energetic little 5-year old boy I encountered with his dad at the gas pump this morning, all our worries are over.

    “Isn’t it great? All the zombies are dead, Super Moon killed them all last night. My Dad said so!”

    Had to share 🙂

  64. Blueberries canned 5 gal.
    Chicken canned 14pints
    12 gauges 00 buck 25 rounds
    Saw someone mention vinegar we make our on apple cider vinegar every year. It’s super easy to make and very healthy. Started picking gooseberries and blackberries .

  65. Not much done this week. We spent 4 beautiful days in southwestern NC. We were attending a class on the new software program that we are going to be using at work.

    It had been raining here for 2 days before we left so I was already behind on the mowing and weeding. No rain while we were gone, the grass was kneehigh in some areas. I was weeding the blueberry patch this morning and heard a distinctive rattling about 5 feet away from me. Needless to say I went in the other direction!

    Manage to harvest some yellow squash, bell peppers, banana peppers, and jalapenos. I have several large green tomatoes, can’t wait for them to ripen.

  66. Our God is an awesome God isn’t He Brad! Looking forward to your wife’s quick recovery and having that cup of Joe with both of you at Cracker Barrel on Pines at I-20 soon.

    I’ve done almost nothing to prepp so far this year. After Mom passed in February I came down with respiratory infection that became severe bronchitis that became pneumonia. Just as I was getting over that, I had a heart attack. Got out of the hospital last week and am still very weak, but the Lord brought me through one more time.

    I have no garden this year (as yet) and little dough to spend on prepping. I did get two #10 cans of FD pork chops from a friend and picked up a few more medical supplies and some batteries.

    I have three groups want me to schedule disaster preparedness classes for them as soon as possible and four people wanting a wilderness survival class so soon as I’m a little stronger, I’ll be busy.

    Blessings to all and may you bathe in the Living Waters of God’s Grace until you stand before Him.

    I Timothy 5:8

    • Southern Mama says:

      Pines at I-20…..I do believe we are in the same part of the Country! That caught my eye when I was reading. Hope your health problems improve and you get to feeling better real soon. My prayers to you on the passing of your Mother. Mine passed on to our heavenly home 3 years ago, not a day that I don’t miss her.

  67. Millie in KY says:

    I finally gave up and got some buckets and planted the hazel nut trees and raspberries in them. I hope they make it. I will have to transplant them next year, I just don’t think I will get the garden in this year. The potatoes and sweet potatoes and herbs in pots are going to town, though, and the carrots that are in big planters. At least it is something. I still have to do the strawberries this week for sure. I will spend the rest of the summer building the darn raised beds and getting some dirt for them. There have been just too many projects to work on this as much as I wanted to.
    The bedroom is painted, the extra shelving unit is up, the Tupperware bins I had packed with food are up and on display! Pantry Porn for sure. Looks really nice, organized and plenty of more room for items. All that remains in that room is to paint the closet and put the shelves back in and then I can put buckets of grains in the bottom and the two shelves are big enough for #10 cans. Lastly, I will purchase a lock for the door so that when we have company, no one wanders in there to see what is there. I also need to whip up some curtains in there, we do have venetian blinds in there but do want it to look nice and finished. My two saddles are in there, too.
    I did buy some supplies, baby powder, some anti itch clear lotion, petroleum jelly, baby aspirin.
    This week I hope to begin to train one of my 3 year old fillies for riding, will take about 3 good months to get her like I want her. She’s a smart one and I think it will be really straightforward…..
    I hope to hear from the one state job this week. Thanks for the prayers!

  68. JeffintheWest says:

    Hi everyone. Normally I wouldn’t do this, but this looks like it might be a reasonably priced way to vacuum pack stuff using normal ziplock bags. It’s a “Kickstarter” and it looks like it already made it’s goal so its a “go,” meaning that if you back it, you’ll pay out, but you’ll also get the product, and the price for the product is only $20. Here’s the link: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1066541019/thriftyvac?ref=category
    I’d be interested in people’s thoughts on it as well. It has 16 days left in the pledge period, so there’s time for comment.

    My thought on the whole thing is that even if it turns out to be really cheap and likely to break after a while, for $20 it gives you a good back-up plan and saves your really expensive vacuum packer some wear and tear…. Comments, anyone?

    • JeffintheWest says:

      Plus, I forgot to mention that it requires no electricity! 😉

      • No elec is the best part. The gadget is a high-faluttin’ version of the PumpNSeal, which I have and works on both lidded jars and locking-type bags.

  69. I’m a bit behind this week, but I did get a few things done without spending too much money.

    I went to a small “farmer’s market” on Saturday and found starts of some herbs that I’ve been wanting – catnip, Greek oregano and mint. I also bought a quart jar of honey – $13. More than what I wanted to spend but considering that’s about a $3 savings for two pint jars elsewhere, I was happy.

    At Big Lots, I bought flower pots and potting soil for some other herbs that I started – parsley, cilantro and basil. I got those seeds started and re-potted the herbs I bought at the farmer’s market.

    Still thinking of herbs – I harvested basil, chives, marjoram and thyme. I washed them and set them in my oven to dry (safest place in the house). I’m also hoping to make some pesto this week.

    We also move two old azalea bushes from our front yard to the back yard. I’m hoping we continue to have a wet year, as that will aid in their ability to survive the move. They are also in a good place to benefit from extra rainwater and with a little tweaking, we will have our air conditioner drain line routed directly to them (that re-route will help with another problem).

    In other gardening news, I planted a row of potatoes in an unused part of the garden. Since they were kitchen volunteers, I’m not expecting much but am hopeful. The rest of the garden looks good but isn’t producing a lot. The zucchini plants are huge, but we’re only averaging two to three every other day from eight plants. The squash isn’t even doing that well. Both are covered in aphids, but I have seen lady bugs on them too (they will not go hungry). The green beans are making enough to eat about twice a week and the tomatoes are just now beginning to ripen. The Lima beans and black-eyed peas are starting to bloom, along with the very scarce okra. (By the way, why didn’t anyone tell me that black-eyed peas need poles to grow on? I’ve never grown them before and had no clue.) I do have a baby cantaloupe on my volunteer vines and my corn is showing tassels. While it worries me that we aren’t producing much (yet), I’m also worried that I’m going to have too much to handle soon. Oh well, whatever happens, I’m enjoying watching it all grow.

    Finally, in an effort to encourage others in the realm of self-reliance, I gave a neighbor a tour of our yard. She has show an interest in planting things in her yard that will produce food. I gave her a couple of freshly picked zucchini and offered to help her with ideas. She already has a couple of fig trees that another neighbor gave her.

    That’s it for the week. Time to try to read everyone’s posts.

  70. Last night the dh and I were talking. We need new tires on the truck, but they are not at the point that they need to be pushed to the top of the list. So here is our conversation:
    Dh, “we need new tires on tge truck”
    “Well if we need to get up and go I dont want to be worried”
    “Go? Go where?”
    “In case of a hurricane or something”
    My jaw hit the floor and I asked him to repeat himself. He said a few ‘choice’ things to me in spanish, then we were interrupted by the neighbors.
    I think all my work is starting to pay off. He is hard headed and stubborn, but my dh said something about being prepared!
    Its not the whole kaboodle, but I am still doing the victory dance.

  71. Lauri no e says:


    That is great. Little at a time.

  72. Seems my beautiful state is on fire again. I am tweaking my evac plans to meet me currant situation. I am in constant flux because my family comes and goes so often. Adapt, improvise and keep you sense of humor. Right?
    I need to take my son to college orientation decided to fly over the fires instead of trying to drive through and around them.
    We really do some monsoon moisture and the forecast is sunshine and dry breezes forever.
    The last rain dance we did I thought I was peed on by a bird. Bad news, my tree was infested with aphids and it was bug pee.
    I had to use a systemic poison for the first time in my life to save my tree. Bad bad bad.
    However it was not made by Monsanto.
    The last week has been stacking hay and cutting firewood. My son and I decided that we should go even more than we already do into areas. Especially if pandemic flu hits this fall/winter.
    We are also throwing around an idea to start a mercantile if SHTF. Someone will do it. The person with most security and the most stuff to sell will win the title. Just a matter of going into business at the right time and what SHTF scenario will unfold.
    We have had a lot of fun with this idea. Long discussions and list making. He had the idea to have a traveling store in an enclosed trailer so the inventory can be moved to safety. While it is not a new idea by any means, he is working on a design that will not allow anyone to steal it.
    My youngest boy is a business man at heart. Excellent bartering skills, tough but fair. He traded a car for cash, and some other items. He turned around, sold the items and made 500.00 more than what he was asking.
    He has not watched Jericho but he reminds me of the boy who took over Gracies store. What was his name?

  73. Lauri no e says:

    Mama J,

    Prayers to you about the fire and also sending your son off to college he sounds like a very smart and responsible young man and you and your husband have done a very good job in raising him.

    Be safe.

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