What did you do to prep this week?

Before we get started with this weeks “what did you do to prep this week” (week #160 btw), I would like to thank – Self Reliant Granny, Glenn D, Randy S, Sherry S, Peter W, Kelli M, Vanessa M and Ron R for their generous donations this week. Thank you.

If you want to make a donation you can do that here

Over the past few days I’ve had three readers send emails asking if I had a “recommended products page” and usually, when there are two or three that send emails with the same question, there are several more with the same question that are afraid to ask, so for those who want to know here is my recommended products page, also in the top navigation links under the blog header.

Okay, what else… I know that most of you hate Facebook and I don’t blame you – I don’t like Facebook either, but we do have a “Facebook Page” where I place links to news and other stuff, if you do Facebook then take a look and “Like” the page. The reason that I have the page up is to funnel traffic from Facebook, back to TheSurvivalistBlog.net.

Most days we get about 200 click-throughs from Facebook but a few days ago we got a burst of over 10,000 – I still have no idea what happened…

Now, let me see – what did I do to prep this week?

Added 35 more cans of canned food to the larder.

Added 35 more cans of canned food to the larder.

Bought this "mini-vice" for $12 at a local thrift store. It's made in the U.S.A.

Bought this “mini-vice” for $12 at a local thrift store. It’s made in the U.S.A.

Also bought this Craftsman "garden fork" at the same thrift store for $10.

Also bought this Craftsman “garden fork” at the same thrift store for $10.

And I also ordered this Tuf-Tug Capacity Cable Hoist/Puller – 4000 Lbs. and this Lab 257: The Disturbing Story of the Government’s Secret Germ Laboratory and renewed my subscription to SecureAnywhere  AntiVirus.

Well that’s it for me this week – how about you… what did you do to prep this week?

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. Even though it’s winter, I was surprised with what I accomplished this week when I started to think about it this morning.
    I stopped at a local Army-Navy store and p/u 2 duffle bags to repack DH & DS GHBs. I was also lucky to find a BDU lined winter coat in DS size so I snagged that for him.
    Ordered and received elderberries from Amazon link BamBam had posted and will start the tincture today w/vodka from Class6 store.

    After going through DrBones Survival Medicine book (that Santa brought – I never realized The jolly old man was such a Prepper ,, but then look at his BOL). Anyway, my medical kit was lacking so I picked up more items from Amazon,, received free shipping and everything arrived within 6 days!

    Playing around with dehydrator, I was fianally successful w/bananas and local BiLo has cubed steak on sale so I bought that, potatoes, onions,, everything you need for a nice pot of stew, dehydrated it, added powdered beef-onion soup and divided it into quart jars. Now we have 4 meals that just needs water!

    Hope everyone has had as much fun putting up preps this week as I did!

  2. Not much this week. I downloaded some prepper fiction to the Kindle Santa brought, and read some. Will say more about them later as I enjoyed some authors I’d never heard of before. EMP stories seem pretty popular, though.

    • I did receive a pack of 3M N95 masks. Having the flu last week put them to mind so I ordered them.

      Now, off to the swap meet. Treasures are lurking.

      I wonder if I could train the cats to sniff out swap meet treasures, sort of like pigs rooting for truffles…

    • Penrod,
      I’m always looking for enjoyable fiction and would like to hear your reviews when you’re done (some have very good suggestions that work in real life).
      I’ve Found 77 Days in September to be one of my favorites, it’s by Ray Gorham, and One Second After is high on my list as well.
      There’s a series by Angela White that IMO has too much paranormal, and I didn’t like her writings.

      • Lights Out is really good methinks.

        • I am a huge fan of “The Jakarta Pandemic” It was a little convenient that the main character worked for a drug company and he was able to have a series of drugs just in case, but other than that the book was good with lots of prepping ideas for the average person living in the suburbs. It also gave examples of how different people would act and react. I would highly recommend.

          • “When the Ashes Fall” by Jacqueline Drugs is another book I enjoyed. It describes a nuclear attack on a city and a woman and her two daughters trying to get home after taking cover in a tunnel. It caused men to try some of her other books, like her Begining series which had very little self reliance or community building but lots of soap opera drama.

          • “When the Ashes Fall” was one of the books I read this week. I liked it a lot. Most of the prepper fiction I’ve come across has been by men, with male protagonists, and pretty much male interests.

            Druga’s book was well written and from the perspective of a mother caught in the Big City with two of her kids when an unexpected nuclear attack takes place.

            One could argue with the premise, but that is true of most science fiction as well: Once the premise (like time travel or interstellar travel), however unlikely, has been established, the story must follow logically from there. “Ashes” did. And the premise in “Ashes” is a lot more likely than interstellar travel.

            There is a lot more introspection in “Ashes” than in most prepper or sci fi novels. The mother’s struggle to survive the initial aftermath of the bombing, and the terrible trip home to find her husband and young son were well done.

          • I down loaded Lights Out this morning, and will now go get When the Ashes Fall. Thanks for the suggestion.

          • R-Me, You are very welcome. I hope you enjoy it. It isn’t quite so polished as big name authors, but it is a good story, well told. I wish I could do so well. This is an author worth encouraging.

          • Tactical G-Ma says:

            I really enjoyed the story.

          • good morning g ma and good to see you!

          • When I reread what I wrote about The Beginnings series I wanted to be clear that I would not recommend them. They are not what I consider survival fiction because they were written more as a mixed up soap opera. They aren’t bad if you want a lot a romance and bed hopping with unbelievable preps thrown in. But her book “When the Ashes Fall” was good, and I bought 2 others I haven’t read yet.

        • +1

          • Anyone heard of G. Michael Hopf? His books are pretty good. So are A. American’s. They are both on Amazon, hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

            As far as prepping, just bought some more water….seems a big drought is coming to California.

          • Alex, yep, I enjoy those 2 authors also.

      • I have enjoyed One Second After, the A. American series, and Lights Out. I started the book by Angela White, but did not get past the frist few chapters. Based on today’s suggestions, I have downloaded Jakarta Pandemic and 77 Days in September. I enjoy reading. Suggestions are always appreciated.

    • I am currently enjoying “The Yellowstone Conundrum (Is this the end?)”. I got it as a free e-book (currently $3.99).

      Plus Brakken has had his set “Enemies, Foreign and Domestic” up for free a couple of times in the last few months. I really liked this series of 3 books, but in paperback (trade size) they are about 3″ thick, the Kindle version is very nice.

      I got myself a Kindle Paperwhite 2GB for after-Christmas. I usually put the books on my tablet, but this is so small and lights (plus the battery lasts a very long time with the wi-fi turned off). I use it a lot more now than before. Good thing as I’ve accumulated over 1800 books on my table so far.

    • A good series is “Dies the Fire” by SM Stirling.
      What happens when electricity and other laws of nature stop. It’s also called the Emberverse series.

      • Rob Crawford says:

        Unfortunately, the later books feel rushed and rapidly go paranormal. OK, the whole “Change” thing was paranormal, but this dialed it up to 11.

        The “rushed” part — they’re travelling overland from Seattle to the northeast, take a whole book to get to the Mississippi, then the journey across the midwest and to Martha’s Vineyard happens between pages.

    • so, i was thinkin' says:

      299 Days is a great series…the first book was a little slow for my husband, but I thought it was great to show how the main character became aware f what is going on in the world. I would recommend it.
      Just read book one of Holding Their Own and really enjoyed it. Would recommend to readers that don’t mind some sexual innuendo between husband and wife chatacters.

      • I’ve been enjoying 299 days too. Waiting for the next in the series right now. I’ve decided it won’t have been an inexpensive read though, by the time I get to the last in the series.

        Also waiting for the rest of A. Americans Going Home series.

        Enjoyed 77 days in Sept. too, although I thought his main character was an awful slow learner a couple times in there.

        • Mary in GA says:

          I’ve enjoyed 299 Days series and have read all but the one just released. The reviews on it didn’t sound too good, so I thought I may wait on the next one and order 2 at once since they said the one just released is a cliff-hanger. It is getting expensive though.

  3. Nebraska Woman says:

    Hi, Pack!
    1. I spent the day yesterday throwing up over TDL’s speech.
    2. Because of the heat wave we had here (at least over 20 degrees), I looked over my tools in the garage and was amazed at what I found. I do not need a thing! It feels good to have everything in one place. My ex was a hoarder…I never could find anything.
    3. I spent some time reading up on the flu, and what I found was frightening. However, Bam Bam’s articles on tinctures, prevention, etc. were better than anything I could find. Seems like everyone is discovering elderberries! We are fortunate to have her, Michele, and other people on this site.
    4. I finished my article on the religious hours. I need either a tutorial on how to transfer it to via computer or a snail mail address, please.
    5. My ex teaching partner and good friend was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer from which she will not recover. As we get older, these loved people will start disappearing.
    6. Added Idaho Spuds (4 boxes) to the larder with plenty of gravy mixes. I also added more canned foods and canned meat (not tuna) and filled the water bricks I ordered. They’re pretty good but rather expensive. I am using an unused bedroom in my unheated upstairs and I found much to my dismay that fabric softeners do not respond well to cold. The softener clumps up and is hard to get out of the bottle. I shook it up with water, but that doesn’t help much. Note to self: put FS in downstairs closet.
    Awesome finds at the thrift store, MD. I found a spreader and lots of canning jars. Isn’t it amazing what people feel they don’t need any more?

    • Nebraska Woman,

      I spent the day yesterday throwing up over TDL’s speech.

      I know how you feel. I don’t listen or watch any of his speeches – I can’t stand to look at or hear him, it’s like scratching a chalkboard to me… bla, bla, bla.

      • I stopped watching them too. Ever hear one of those media surveys of little kids say in third or fourth grade as to how they would make the world a better place? Well that’s what Obama sounds like. Only worse.

      • LittleAnniePrepper says:


      • Lauri no e says:



        I feel the same as you and so does my husband.

        • S'wt Tater says:

          I feel the same ay, but try to listen to part of them , so I can have an idea of what to expect next….

      • Encourager says:

        I do have to disagree. No matter how nauseating or painful it is, we SHOULD listen to what the wanna-be-dictator says. Forewarned is forearmed.

        KNOW your enemy.

        Just remember to take your high blood pressure meds and chant “This too shall pass” as you listen to him…

        • Tactical G-Ma says:

          I agree with Encourager because a great many of our fellow Americans believe the TDL is right. My children know that our country is forever changed. I just hope we can influence a better environment for future generations. Actions not words. Know your enemy!

    • #2 is the difference between men and women! I can always use new tools!!!

    • His speeches never make me sick since I never listen to a word that he says or his wife.Whenever I hear something or see iethers face I change the channel or shut it off.

      • Hunker-Down says:

        Me to.

      • Nebraska Woman says:

        In my defense, I was a captive audience. All radio stations here had it on, so I figured I’d listen. I spent the first half laughing and mocking, and the second half wondering how many sheeple were buying this bullspit.
        Did you see that on Moochelle’s 50th birthday, the TDL found out that he’d have to pay for the party, so he asked everyone to eat before they came? Obviously he is not a prepper because I am sure that if any member of the pack decided to throw a party, we could serve food, lots of it and good stuff, too!

    • Nebraska Woman:

      You did better than I did with his speech. I only lasted maybe 4 months into his administration before I couldn’t watch them anymore. We was on once and I went to turn it off, and the DW said she wanted to see it. SHe ;asted 15 minutes.

    • PGCPrepper says:

      The only time I hear Oblama’s voice anymore that surpasses 5 seconds is when Rush imitates it. LOL

    • a friend of mine did a lot of couponing and found that hair products ,et cetera, glom up in their containers [plastic]. i wonder if transferring them to glass would help or if those types of things just don’t have much of a shelf life no matter how you store them.
      something else to learn how to make yourself or find what our ancestors used, or if they did without. no softeners in those days.

    • Millie in KY says:

      Nebraska Woman, I work in a detergent factory. You have to keep the soaps, conditioners, and fabric softeners between about 45 to 50 degrees and up to not more than 105. Other wise they will go bad on you. Also, these things will not last indefinitely, and they are susceptible to picking up bacteria. If you have a bottle that has kind of collapsed upon itself, like someone squeezed it, toss it. No good anymore, well, you could probably use it but I wouldn’t. Keep them rotated and you should be all right.

      • Nebraska Woman says:

        Thanks. I think it got a little too cold up there!

      • S'wt Tater says:

        My fabric softner lasts a long time…Here is my trick. Buy a 32 oz bottle, put about 4 oz of liquid fabric softner in it. fill with water. spray about 12-15 sprays on your clothes as you put them in dryer..you can put it on a dry cotton cloth and throw it in, or just spray it on top of the clothes. different humidity levels may require more or less…adjust to suit yourself. one bottle will do about loads…

    • Don had stage 4 lung cancer and was given 6 months to live. He is now cancer free. Please give her this link with my recommendation to give it a try it in a nice cup of tea – she might be surprised!

      It is called graviola or sour sop and specifically targets cancer cells – with no know side effects and does not interfere with chemo if she is on it.


      • Nebraska Woman says:

        Michele, on Fox News’ health program I heard a herbalogist claim that hemp leaves (yes, mary jane to us boomers) can be dried, crushed, and made into a tincture with 100 proof vodka. He claimed that it had all the Omega 3’s and 6’s that we need for optimum health, Also he would use this for cancer preventment and treatment.
        I have lots of it growing in my grove. Hmmmmm…

        • I agree with you, marijuana has LOTS of health benefits. I haven’t been a partaker in many years, but that doesn’t mean I don’t understand the benefits of it’s use. Two of my family members have CA medical marijuana licenses, and they swear by it.

          • Michele, I ordered soursop from Aggie Plants. It just came in yesterday, labeled “Soursop Herbal tea ” It came in a mylar envelope. Is this this same thing? How do I use it? How long can it be stored? Is this also used in a tincture and stored for months until needed? Can it be stored in the mylar until needed? Sorry for so many questions. This is one totally new to me, and unmentioned in the books I have. Thank you so much for your help.

          • fmwb,

            I don’t know. I just did a little research and did see that there was a tincture that was made from sour sop, and there was also a note saying that the tincture draws out different qualities than tea does. Tea is what is constantly recommended for cancer.

            I will do a bunch more research and get back to you tomorrow, but for now I’d say if you bought it for cancer treatment, use it to make tea. Steep the tea for 15 minutes for max potency.

            My guess is – and this is only a guess – I’d store the leaves in a jar with a tight fitting lid, out of sunlight, and keep in a cool place, or keep it tightly closed in the bag it came in.

            Don used the tea daily for 7 or 8 months and the cancer is totally gone. The doctor was noticing differences in the cancer after a month or two, his numbers were going down (and I really do not know what I’m talking about here – but apparently the numbers going down was very good) Remember, he only had 6 months to live when we started it. He still takes the tea in the morning – and has totally stopped chemo treatments.

            Again, I’ll do more research tomorrow and get back her and tell you what I’ve found.

          • Thank you, Michelle. I really don’t want to cause you any more work. I just wondered if you knew. Also, no one I know has cancer, but it seemed like a good “in case”. I guess if it takes 10-15 leaves per cup, each pack is only good for a bit less than 2-3 weeks. If the leaves are good for any longer than the 20 months listed on the bag, we could have a good supply, especially if I order a couple of bags per month. Also, I read one can use as a preventive, so maybe that could be a legitimate use closer to the expiration date. Does that make sense?

          • NO, it only takes 3 leaves per cup. I buy it in packs of 200.

            You need to let it steep for 15 minutes.

            Yes, your preventative idea is a good one, and I’ve personally decided to add graviola/sour sop to my tea occasionally. It has other health benefits other than just killing cancer cells,

          • This is wonderful to know! My package has very confusing directions which appear to be translated. This package says it is from “Ooobiesstore” and that it has 200+ leaves.

          • I’ve been researching for a few hours now, and don;t have much more info than I did last night.

            I have some suggestions for you but I’m not sure this is more than a guess.

            If you can buy everclear (pure alcohol 195 proof) you might consider making a STRONG decoction of the leaves, then adding an equivalent amount of everclear to that to help preserve it. That should give you the same qualities of the ‘tea’ which is actually a decoction (tea is steeped 1-maybe 5 minutes – decoctions are simmered, or steeped for much longer – and that is what you should do with sour sop/gravila).

            I would also imaging that the leaves stored properly would not lose too much of their effectiveness if they were stored without light in a cool dry place.

            That’s it – my best guesses, and not really much fact to back them up.

          • Thank you so very much, Michelle. You have gone above and beyond. I had another response to what you posted last night, but it may have disappeared into the Ethernet or whatever. Thank you again!

        • worrisome says:

          Whatever you do….get it only if can be assured that is grown without pesticides. Stuff coming in on a major highway artery is polluted with usa illegal bug sprays out of Mexico. The cartels bring it in when they set up the grow camps. If you don’t know the grower don’t trust that it is good for you.

  4. riverrider says:

    hi all. not much this week. cut n split some firewood, received the spools and wound them with bankline for my various bags, got battery cases and filled them for bags and canoe box, put up a tv antenna in my shop, bought gun oil in small bottles for bags, exchanged several lp tanks, bought extra vitamins, and a tiny air compressor for the bov. an old army buddy came for a visit, a lmi. went to a meeting of lmi’s and was very impressed with the caliber of folks in the group. they do all kinds of training with a concentration on commo which is a big weakness of mine. they are having a winter bob test later on as well. think i found a team, major score…..oh, va assembly passed several pro gun bills and killed a slew of anti gun bills already in committee, yay! be vigilant folks. the full court press to take our guns and the rest of our rights is on. write and call your reps. for the first time in decades va has a chance at a conservative senator. wish us luck. stay warm pack!!

    • Dammit!!! (runs out to buy shop antenna to keep up with riverider jonses)

      • riverrider says:

        lol, nah, i had to. the mother in law is staying with us and its the only way i get any peace, lol…. well she was anyway. she’s in the hospital right now but she’ll be coming back in a few days so i had to fix up my hideaway.

    • MentalMatt says:

      I couldn’t agree more River, I tell everyone I can to join the NRA, and the GOA.

  5. Rob in Ontario says:

    Good morning MD- I use face book and like to see the news stories and such that you have up, this week I got 21lbs of lead for the muzzle loader, I found a set of tong handles for the bullet mold for 54 cal. at a flea market for $30 had an other mold on the end no idea what cal. I picked up a German winter smock for out in the snow, boot insoles for a pair I needed them for. Was checking out a leg holster for a pistol but I don’t have one yet. Picked up 24 fuel tablets for my little stove and am reading the ” Going Home” series, I think its as good as
    “One Second After”, I noticed .22 are visibley lacking in some stores,f

    • axelsteve says:

      Rob I had to buy some 45 acp cause I could not find any 22 lr.My son and I shot it up yesterday.We had a good time.

  6. Well, not much this week. I hit a couple yard sales and scored big.Still doing research on vacuum sealers. I plan to buy a freezer very soon and then be vigilant about scouring the stores for sales on meat.Ill vacuum seal the meat after putting it into portions that would suit 2 1/2 people ;).made some bread in my bread maker and decide to use up some grated cheese. The bread came out great! Bought 6000 plastic spoons yesterday at a yard sale. the home owners used to be in the restaraunt business and had all kinds of napkins and spoons and such. i figured, i have no idea what on earth i would do with 6000 spoons,but for 3 bucks i couldnt say no.Wife and i went over our medical/pain relief preps and are making and we are going to be more diligent about circulating them into our daily use and replacing as used. some of the “use by” dates are a little old and the whole container has gotten a little out of hand. waste not want not! My 4 new hens and the darrel the rooster have integrated quite nicely into the routine. very little squabbling and pecking. Im very surprised. darrel did spike me good and drawbloodbut i sent him sailing with my shoe of death, and he has decided to leave me alone when i enter the coop. Have a great week yall.

    • BC,

      My dh and I have saved so much money with our freezer. Check out this website–you can find out what’s on sale a week in advance and then plan your trip.


      • BC & Bam Bam,
        I grew up pretty much living out of our freezers and the pantry. Bought all meat in quantity. For baked goods, from bread to cakes, cookies, and pies; if you don’t bake from scratch,, check out your area for a bakery outlet. We used to call this the “day old bread” store, and it’s where the bakery items that hit the sell by date on the grocery shelves is sent. We would double bag the bread and freeze, and generally only made a trip to the outlet every 4-6 weeks, and that was with 4 kids. The food is still quite good and the savings can be enormous.

        • LittleAnniePrepper says:

          We used to call it the “Dead Bread Store.” And yes, you could get not only bread, but rolls, cakes, pies and such.

        • Mary in Texas says:

          Back when she was fa teen my daughter called the bakery thrift store “the used bread store”.

      • Thanks BamBam!

        If it was not for SouthernSavers, I would not be where I am on my food preps! Thanks for posting. I would have never thought to…

        I posted below a link I think you may like 😀

      • Thanks Bam Bam,i already printed 2 coupons.

    • A big hurrah re the meds. Rotating stash with new is a must.

      I ran into an out-of-stock problem due to contamination a couple of years ago, so I bought some from my doc who had a small supply. His PA and an assistant rolled their eyes and made it clear they thought I was nuts. Now the situation looks like it’s back, just for new reasons. Many folks were getting scared over Obummercare and started to buy a small supply from the docs. Couple that with the pharma companies making less of meds. Now there’s talk again of making more OTC pain relievers, i.e. Tylenol, available only by prescription. Probably won’t be long before some dumb-arse again tries to pull vitamins and herbs. Be aware.

    • riverrider says:

      bc, glad your new stud is working out well for you and your hens 🙂

    • Might want to get a baby roo and train him up in the way he ought to go.

      If a roo attacks you, the shoe of death might not be enough – they wait until you have your back turned and attack again – experience speaking here.

      • Encourager says:

        LOL…yeah, we learned never to turn our back on one of our roosters. Many years ago, my son (age 6) had egg gathering as one of his chores. The rooster decided to teach him a lesson, and got him good. Bloody legs and a deep scratch on son’s belly. He was terrified of that rooster from then on.

        So…After some first aid, Mommy finds an old racket (think it was a tennis racket) and demonstrated how to swing it. We went out to the coop, and now Mr. Rooster decided he would take me on. Big mistake. I whacked him right through the hen door out to the run. He came running back and got whacked again and hit the ceiling that time. He sat stunned for a minute and I handed the racket to my son…the rooster took one look at my son and ran right out the door. He had only to carry that racket from then on and that rooster ran.

        He was eventually replaced with a roo with a much better attitude…thanks to being picked up and cuddled and treated to bug yummies. He was always happy to see us coming!

        • Encourager,
          LOL you just reminded me of an incident that happened when my DS#3 was about 4. I was working for some people that had a small farm and ds was with me and a couple of the geese decided to chase him. The owner gave ds a big stick and told him that if they came near him again to hit them with it. He went around stalking the geese after that.

  7. Had a busy week with school starting again. Took some advice from several other posters and found some just add water gravy packets on sale and bought a dozen of various flavors. Added another 10 lbs of rice, and a canned ham and some other canned stuff. plan on hitting a sale today after work.see how it goes.

    • Mary in GA says:

      I have many of those just add water gravy packets too. I also save all of the free sauces I get with take out food. Even though we don’t eat fast food often, we do some. Arby’s sauce, Taco Bell sauce and the handfuls that the Chinese restaurants stuff in your bag. I figure having these will add flavor to all that rice we may be having soon. Some of our local Food Lions closed down a couple of years ago and they had the gravy packets marked down to 30 cents each, so I bought all they had.

    • hvaczach:

      I have a friend, who also preps, come over right after I made a Costco run. He told me he understood most of what I got, but as he was helping me put stuff away he saw the milk crate full of Brown and Poultry gravy mixes (I buy the 7″ jar) and asked about it. I said rice, beans, and mashed potatoes are good and store well, but get old after a while and the gravy really helps. Now he has a collection of jars and packets whenever they go on sale.

  8. I have had a productive week. I made 5 gallons of laundry soap and 10 batches of bath soap (100 bars). That should last us a while. We made another run to Sam’s Club for a major stock up. I am still looking for a source for bulk salt. We also put in an order for Zaycon. They expect chicken prices to rise significantly through the summer and so they won’t offer chicken again until the fall. We ordered 80 lbs.

    I read yesterday that H1N1 has surpassed the epidemic threshold set by the CDC–7.5 percent of the deaths in the U.S. last week were flu-related.

    • Yikes Bam, I had no idea it was that high!

      Saw a piece on the MSN webpage on the H1N1 flu. When the MSM starts talking about something, you know that it’s not good.

      • axelsteve says:

        I did some maintenance on the pickup. I lubed up the driveshaft and the upper ball joints.I will do the lower balljoints and etc after I get my floorjack back from my oldest son.One way that you can lube non zerk fitting u joints is by taking off the bolt on section of the u joint and fill the cap with grease. Then you do that to the other cap.that way the extra grease gets pressed into the other caps. It is not perfect but better then not greasing them. I also lubed the slipjoint at the center bearing.

    • First off, let me say how much I appreciate all the information that there is from such a diverse, yet similar group of people. I have enjoyed this site for quite a while, (since the days of Lintpicker, for those that remember him)but never commented. Hey BAM BAM, just thought I’d let you know , & anyone else that’s interested in buying bulk items, (i.e. the salt you mentioned) that maybe small, mom & pop type restaurants would be a good source for a few items. I used to own a pizza shop, & we would order 50# bags of salt, sugar, several different types of flour for our dough, cases of olive oil, etc. from companies like, “Roma, or Ben E. Keith”. I utilized these for a lot of my “personal pantry” items. Some of our customers asked us to order bulk items for them, so we’d just add it to our order & charge them our cost for the product. It would be worth a try at least.

      • ICT,

        Now that’s an idea. I will have to think if we know anyone who owns a small restaurant. Thanks for speaking up.

      • I sure do miss lint picker and his pink flashlights.

        • axelsteve says:

          I regret not meeting him. We only lived about an hour and a halfe from each other.

          • NorCal Ray told me that Lintpicker was a public figure, and very concerned about OPSEC because of it. Based on where he lived I was only a few hours drive from his area as well, and would loved to have met him – that is until Ray told me about his need for privacy.

            Yeah, I miss him and his sense of humor too. Hope he is still lurking occasionally.

          • I keep hoping Lint Picker will come back as “someone else”, using another identity, and let us know he is back, and is okay.
            I miss him as well as so many of our old Wolf Pack friends. I would love to know how they are.

        • Ahhhh, Lint Picker…..I always wondered if he would ever return. For the longest, I couldn’t look at a flashlight without being reminded of one of his quirky comments.

        • Encourager says:

          Salmon! They were Salmon colored!!! Remember?? ROFLOL!!

          I miss him, too. He always made me laugh.

      • If you’re in the east central area of the country (think Ohio and two states in any direction) or Florida, you should check out Gordon Food Services (gfs.com). These folks are basically a wholesale distributor to restaurants and commercial food users; but, have outlet stores all over the place. Bulk and reasonable prices is what they handle.

        • Here in SoCal you can checkout Smart and Final for bulk bags of salt, sugar, rice, beans etc. Prices are pretty reasonable.

        • I do a lot of shopping at the GFS as well and very happy with it. In my neck of the woods there is a Hotel/Restaurant store that has overstock and used items. I plan on checking it out also..fortunately it happens to be right next door to a Harbor Freight.

        • GFS is where I get all my bulk spices.
          great prices; some better than Sam’s.

    • Try herbalcom.com Pure sea salt is just over $1.00 a pound and elderberries are just under $8.00 a pound. They have soooo many different herbs at the best prices I have found anywhere.

      They also have the empty capsules, citric acid, and other random stuff.

    • k. fields says:

      BamBam, can you explain your search for salt? Even when purchased at a grocery store, it is incredibly cheap for the amount you need to store (what, maybe 8 pounds per person per year?). Here, 25lb bags of table salt are around $8.50 and I assume you could find it cheaper in a more urban area with big box stores, restaurant supply places, etc. Kosher and pickling salt are more expensive (about $1.50 – $2.00 per pound here) but again, how much are you looking to put back and why? Meat curing? Trade? I’m interested in your ideas.

      • K. Fields,

        I would like to buy 25 lb. bags. I think this will be a good investment. I plan to use it for barter. I would like to get a couple hundred pounds. That would be inexpensive now. But priceless later.

        • BamBam, Sam’s Club has a 25 pound bag of salt for $3.98….

        • k. fields says:

          BamBam – OK, then I would just purchase the 25lb bags like Lee suggested. For $50 you’d be all set.
          If you were looking to have enough salt on hand to cure a couple of steer, a few hogs, and a boatload of fish, then that’s entirely different and would require a more substantial investment and a lot of searching for the best prices if you were to do it right.

          I personally keep a large number of Morton’s 50-lb White Crystal Food Grade Brine blocks (they’re made for water softeners) around just in case I need to suddenly cure a lot of meat. I find them easy to store (nice cubes) and they only cost around $6.50 each here through a local water system service company. Just be sure to get the pure salt, not the “system saver” or “rust out” type of products. Are they the best product for curing meat? No, but for me, they are a very good compromise for curing but I would not use them for canning or as a table salt.

  9. Still recovering from the flu, a little cough and short winded, but I know it is on the downside, will be so glad when it is completely gone! I am starting to re-load so I needed a re-load bench, I made one out of re-purposed items, a heavy duty lathe stand for the base(extremely stable with adjustable rubber feet)two layers of 3/4 ply glued and screwed together and a 5/8″ recycled laminate desktop on top of the plywood. a very stable and solid bench for next to nothing. I have a re-claimed lights, stool and a stainless steel work table added to the mix. I am taking over a section of the basement that is semi-finished, it has both good natural light during the day and good lights above, and outlets on their own breaker, so I am set, it is warm in the winter and cool and dry in the summer so I should be very happy, the wife is thrilled I am going to make her light .38sp. target loads for her range time, so all is good. she decided this morning I need a custom re-loading/gun cleaning apron, so she will be hitting the fabric shops today to find the right material, for this project.We added to our bottle water, we have decided that in the spring we will get a couple of large capacity water storage (275 gal) containers for the garage.We are also thinking about one of those emergency tub liner units for the spare bathroom tub. any feed back on these? We also developed a “sick bed” a cot system that can keep your head elevated, we put it is the spare bedroom, it will work great when only one of us is sick, so you don’t keep the other up all night, it will fold up and go in a closet can double for that guest that shows up without notice(we do get out of state family visitors which is OK).

    • “also thinking about one of those emergency tub liner units for the spare bathroom tub.”

      We have had a WaterBOB for several years, and gave one to a friend this Christmas, but we have never had to use ours, so no real feedback.

      Anyone who might have warning of a disaster -like a hurricane- could probably benefit from having one for each tub, though. We store water (55 gallon drum, 5 gallon water fountain jugs from Home Depot) but in a disaster everything counts.

      Our friend lives in a condo complex with a swimming pool, but he lives on the 14th floor, so in a grid down situation he would have trouble carrying water up to his place. He has almost no storage, so a tub liner seems like a reasonable way to go in his circumstances. Hurricanes are the likeliest problem for him, and they give warning. For $20 or a bit more, they seem like a good idea.

    • rjarena,
      The battub unit is a Water BOB (Bathtub Oblong Bladder) and they work fine. They hold about 100 gallons of potable water; however, they rened the bathtub unusable, so if you need to keep one full all of the time and you have a spare bath, then you’re probably OK. Otherwise, you’ll need to have water and pressure available to fill it, which in a city system can generally still be available if the city has water towers. For those with wells, you’ll need to be able to run your pump, long enough to fill it.

      • “They hold about 100 gallons of potable water”

        True, but they require the tub to support the thin bladder, so in practice will hold only as much as your tub. 25 gallon tub: 25 gallons. 50 gallon tub (hardly any that big): 50 gallons. Maybe some of the big old-fashioned tubs on feet would go that big or slightly bigger, but modern tubs are pretty small.

        I have never experimented with ours because I see no way to dry it out afterwards. I’d treat them as single-use.

        • Penrod,
          Good point on the size of the bathtub. However much you can store in yours (collective yours, not just Penrod) it is a significant and safe way to store potable water, and running around $20.00 is simply good insurance.

      • Thanks, I think it would be useful for some circumstances, when you know a problem is coming, it would be for convenience water, i.e. already in the bathroom,, as apposed to getting water out of the future storage in the garage. I have lived through a few hurricanes when I was in FLA., and we would always seal the tubs and fill them up, you had to be concerned about small children, pets, and bugs, this would make it cleaner and safer.

        • Years ago my ex wife and I started using our water bed for our emergency supply. Just a thought. I may have to look for another one.

  10. 3,000 plastic spoons! If I could be so lucky! I haven’t done anything but keep warm and safe from flu exposure, Haven’t left the property one time. ( but with deals floating around like BC.s spoons) I’m tempted. Well the U.P.S. delivered a spam can of 440 rd.s of 7.62 x 54R ammo is all which brings me up too 880 rd.s well that’s it-no wait there’s a gunshow on the 2/15/14th there it is, Have a good week pack!

  11. Went to Sam’s yesterday and got the usual paper goods, the paper towels had an in store coupon $3 off at register along with the free and clear laundry detergent paks. Noticed the price there on honey has skyrocketed… Glad I have sources for local honey now!

    Received my medicinal herb seed order from seedstrust.com, it contained arnica, echinacea, desert parsley, valerian, mountain mint, red clover, yarrow and thyme. Started the ones that called for fall planting in plastic strawberry containers, and will get the rest going in a few weeks.

    Still working on t shirt yarn rug. My fingers are sore, and I just ran out of the heavy duty thread. Heading out in a bit to pick up some more and maybe go by flea market.

    Started to think about getting the garden ready, if I’m lucky, I can start with the early planting around Valentines day. Started saving gallon water and milk jugs for the starts, cut out the bottoms and voila, mini green houses! Reminds me, need to stop by friends ranch on way to town and see if he’s got the cow manure ready. It seems to compost better than the horse manure does (have plenty of that!), and see if he has any elderberry bushes down by the river.

    Have a stack of terra cotta roof tiles that’s been sitting for a lot of years, I think I am going to see if any of them are still whole and maybe use them for herb bed containment. If not, smashing them up and using the shards for layering in the beds for drainage. Cedar posts are fully seasoned and they are going to get dragged out and pegging them in on areas that rainwater drains down to keep the soil from washing completely out. I’d rather have it all going where I want it, not washing out the drive way and flooding the shop, like what happened on Halloween. I have an idea to keep some drainage areas to supply a small water feature in the back yard. There is a natural depression just “downhill” and I already have a small fountain pump to recirculate the water. Just need DH to bring home some of the roofing material scraps from work to do the initial lining. Got several bags of bentonite clay that have been mouldering in the shop for years that was meant to reinforce stock pond bottom years ago and never got used. Use what you have, do without, make do!

    • Nebraska Woman says:

      t-shirt rug? Directions, please. I need to find a way to use my old shirts other than dust rags. Thanks!

      • Shai,

        Oh, please submit a photo with the article. 🙂 I would love to learn how to make rugs from old t-shirts.

        • MY mother used to make these when I was young. Made them out of whatever leftover material was around. We had 3 large and 4 small ones we used as we had hardwood floors and tile. Worked great.

      • Start at the bottom hem of the shirt, start cutting the shirt into about a one to two inch strip spirally, this will give you a long piece of “yarn” I normally trim the sleeves into rags, but wrap it into a ball giving the yarn a stretch. I then make braids of the yarn, taking about 4 to 5 ft at a time. You can sew in the new ends, or not even cut the initial piece, but I find that’s a little unwieldy. Keep going with the braid, you need many feet for a rug. I’ve seen ones on Pinterest that people have actually used the yarn as crochet medium, but I’m just laying the braids out flat in an oval shape and sewing them together with heavy duty thread on what’s to be the back of the rug. I’ve tied off the end of the braids, I think I am going to have to add more in. I’m shooting for an in-front-of-sink size. I’ve got 4 shirts involved right now, looks like its going to take at least one more for a 2×4′ size. Oh, and the shirts I’ve been using are ones that DH won’t wear and the sizes are 2x. Lots of material!

        • Hunker-Down says:

          Would this work with old bath towels?

          • No idea! But I never have any old towels that survive long enough to be used in that manner! Too many litters of puppies and dog baths, but I think it would make an awesome bath rug. Now that I’m thinking about it, I saw something on Pinterest that used small strips of towels that were made into a hooked rug.

          • It sounds like an old braided rug, but those were made of old fabric. My sister learned how but I never did.

          • Mary in GA says:

            I started making a braided rug a few years ago, still a work in progress, I bought some fabric on a good sale and used it. It is not that hard, but very time consuming!

          • I have braided rugs and crocheted rag rugs all over my house. I used leftover fabric for most of them. My biggest is a 9 x 12 oval rug in the dining room.
            I think old towels would work for a braided rug if the strips are small enough. I believe they would be too thick to crochet them. You will need nylon thread to sew the braids together. Make the braids and sew into an oval or round shape. Just that simple. To make the rug thicker, you could braid the fabric around a cotton cord.
            I don’t sew the strips of fabric together to braid/crochet them. I cut a hole in each end and weave them together.

          • Kate, that’s what I do, weaving one end thru the other. The tshirt yarn is very forgiving and if you stretch it out a bit, it curls into the perfect shape. I did discover that any silk screening should be on the inside of the braid as it makes weird color splotches… I’ve been cutting apart old clothing made out of regular woven fabric into squares and stashing them in color coded boxes. There were some pretty cool color combos in the 90’s…. ;-D

          • Babycatcher says:

            You also want to curve the braid as you go around the ends of your oval so there won’t be any high spots later( the inside braid is shorter than the outside one). Sounds like a great winter project. I’m thinking old bath towels would fuzz too much, because for cotton and T shirt, you are supposed to fold the outside edges in before braiding. That way there’s no frayed edges…

          • Babycatcher, that’s about the only difficult part about this is keeping the curve flat. If seems to “cup” but then I lay it on the floor and it flattens out. I double stitch every couple of inches on the curve. I wish my sewing machine could handle the thickness of it, I’d have it done by now, but alas… I’ve been schlepping the pile around when I have to pick up the grandchildren at school. Make sure the heavy duty needle you use is a sharp one. A decent thimble would probably help too, mine is woefully too small. My fingertips are quite callused now.

        • I made a tshirt rug with a large crochet hook. I stripped the shirts into yarn as Shai described and just crocheted a rectangle. It went real fast. Makes a great rug for the bathroom. Now I am saving old tshirts for a larger one!

      • They make good toilet cloths and baby wipes.Using them saves more money for prepping and takes much less storage space.

  12. Started the week off my calling in an adding another prescription to our Express Script account. For those that use Tri Care and are on regular medications I think this is the way to go. This last med was $56 co-pay every quarter. I realize based upon what other people pay, that this is not much, but with Express Script home delivery it is $13! I’m sure I’ll find something to use that $43 on.

    Had ordered some Bulk and #10 food stuff on sale and that came in. Raided the local Wal-Mart for the $1.08/lb small red beans (I try to do this every week or so as this is the cheapest to-the-house price I can find). Also had chicken breast on sale foe $1.88/lb so 10 pounds of that came home, got cooked, and is headed for the dehydrator this weekend.

    I got some spare mags from various places. SR45, Mini-30, and a 27 rounder for a Glock 21. 5.55×45 62 gr LAP seem to be in a steady supply here, so I added a couple more boxes.

    My big prize was the add from Cold Steel on factory seconds. They had 6 Wakazashi’s grade A seconds on sale for about $100 cheaper than Amazon, so I pulled out the plastic and got one. FOr those that don’t know it is the shorter version of a Katana (Samurai sword) with a 30″ blade. What a piece of steel! I can’t find the blemish on it, but I’m no expert. This is one of those “I’ve wanted one for years” purchases and I really hope I don’t have to use it on others, but it will definitely do the job if needed.

    Well I see we have a new budget going to the President. Not sure if he’s signed it yet. $1.1T sounds like a lot more than we need to spend, but at least there is a plan instead of a Continuing Resolution. Now to see what Feb brings with the debt ceiling. Guess more of doing more with less.

    • LittleAnniePrepper says:

      DH is retired Navy and he’s the one with good health. I take quite a few meds and have been doing home delivery for years. You’ll really appreciate the money you save. We’re about 80 miles from a base and they’re trying to dump us onto a cheaper (for them) health plan. So I have to drive 40 miles to go to the doc, but that’s OK. Now they’re going to start cutting the retirees checks, I’m working harder than ever to get off some of my meds.

  13. I also started using the local library, my wife has for years, I have never been a big reader of novels… Picked up “The Sin Killer” one of a series by Larry McMurtry. I figure I am paying for the library via taxes anyway should use it.

    • If you want a good listen,google a YouTube video called “we can’t make it here any more” by James McMurtry ,Larry’s son. He falls in the outlaw country genre but he is about on the folk side too.

      • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYqCXtMJgI0
        if this dont get you hooked on james mcmurtry, then there just aint no hope!

        • forgive me. i know this aint preparedness related. just one last song from a differant atrtist named ray wylie hubbard. just picture youself in a long low pete with a 600 horsepower cat under the hood,6 inch straights pipes,18 forward gears and 300 miles of desert highway,all to yourself,with ray wylie blasting through the 4 speakers and a 12 inch sub.this was my life for 30 years.

          • BC, if you are going to bring up Ray Wylie Hubbard then you have to go here. And NO! This has nothing to do with prepping. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8-cFtSPIF4Q

          • Lol, I know Ray. He’s getting quite philosophical in his middle age. He thinks it’s cool that his local Methodist church invites him to play at their monthly venues and lets him play whatever he wants..

          • I absolutely love his music and if you would,next time you see him,tell him he helped and old trucker make it through many a long night of lonely roads. Back in my club riding days, there werent many places in austin that i hadnt been to. saw a lot of artists that made it big and even more that made it big in texas. My faves in no particular aroder are
            Blaze foley (RIP)
            lucinda williams
            robert earl keene
            ray whylie hubbard
            guy clark
            townes van zandt
            billy joe shaver
            james mcmurty ( i rode my motorcycle up to fayettville arkansas in 27 degrees to see him play back in 07)
            the road goes on forever and the party never ends. Love the austin sound.

  14. Not much prepping can happen during the week with my schedule. Purchased a FIFO can storage system (with my Christmas money), putting it together today. I stocked up on some canned good last week knowing I was getting it. Mailman brought me some seed catalogs, planning will begin soon. I read up on how to preserve greens, how to make some more homemade mixes and a few other things. Knowledge is power right? This 3 day weekend is hopefully going to be productive.

  15. Hi Folks

    The family has been showing up in waves to help me get stuff moved back into the house as the contractors are now officially done with my repairs. Next week I submit the last of my expenses to the insurance company and then I get to go to the bol.

    With retirement also comes some financial housekeeping so consolidated some accounts, closed out some subscriptions for services I really don’t need, didn’t give up on my DISH account but chopped it down to the next to the lowest service and bought a ROKU to try out. (Did I already tell you this?) Now that I am getting used to it, about the only channel that I am really missing is Nat Geo. I will survive! Made an appointment to take the car in for service and have arranged for my old SUV to get a new engine and tranny. It is very clean and the body is in excellent shape and yes I would never get my money out of it, but it really handles well up there at the bol so going to get it back to being very reliable and use it mostly in the winter.

    I purchased some of the appliances for my new cabin, and they will go up and be stored until we are ready for them. I had to get a head start on the appliances as the nephew needs to know in order to make sure that we have all the proper electrical wattage we need to run everything. In our overzealous desire to make sure we have redundancy, he wants solar and propane generating capacity requirements and he said something about wiring diagrams and electrical boxes at which point I started dozing….

    And non prep related, I started plans to go visit friends in Sitka, Alaska in late June. This time I hope to take some pix of bears, eagles and perhaps a whale or two.

    I spent two evenings with the old couple across the street. Brought in some more firewood for them. She is under the weather so I fixed them dinner and set up their lunches for them the next day. Also ran to the grocery and drug store for them and caught them up on necessities. They have come to an agreement on selling their place and are waiting for their daughter to come next month in order to arrange for a realtor. The homestead is getting to be too much……….he is 89 she is 86, I would say that they had a great run at it. We will all help where we can until they are moved.

    Guess that does it for this week. Still have a prayer chain going with many wolf pack members on it. Work hard everyone. Be your SHTF be personal; area wide or bigger; it helps so much when you have yourself together.

    • PGCPrepper says:

      “I spent two evenings with the old couple across the street. Brought in some more firewood for them. She is under the weather so I fixed them dinner and set up their lunches for them the next day. Also ran to the grocery and drug store for them and caught them up on necessities. They have come to an agreement on selling their place and are waiting for their daughter to come next month in order to arrange for a realtor. The homestead is getting to be too much……….he is 89 she is 86, I would say that they had a great run at it. We will all help where we can until they are moved.

      This is likely to top the list of things I’ll read here today.

    • You are a wonderful person helping to care for your neighbors.

    • Nebraska Woman says:

      I am so excited for you! Moving to a new location where you feel safer and no car keyers around will give you so much peace of mind.

    • Thanks all, It is easy to do, I love them a lot.

  16. THe DW and I got in three days of hunting before the season ended here. No success on that front though. We’ve had a hard time being producitve on the famiy friends land since a massive fire took out the whole area in 2011. I’m really bummed that the only three deer that I saw this year I didn’t have a shot at. Oh well, guess we’ll just have to learn to eat beef more often. Did get a few cans of tuna and a DAK ham for the stores as well as added some PM’s to the hoard. That’s about it for me. Thanks for the forum MD. Keep prepping.

    • I have one of those hams that is over 12 years old. I’m thinking of feeding it to the raccoons. It was in my mom’s kitchen when she died.

  17. Nebraska Woman says:

    Forgot to mention I had the best roast beef ever this week.
    All you need is a low fat beef roast (loin is the best).
    Place in crockpot with 1 evelope of au juis mix, 1 envelope of ranch dressing, and 1 stick of butter. I know I had you until the last ingredient, but I served mixed vegies and mashed potatoes which are both low in fat, so you can do this! Put it on low for 6 -8 hours according to how done you want it. Add thickener to make gravy and enjoy!!!!

    • PGCPrepper says:

      You HAD ME at the butter as long as not nasty margarine. Nothing wrong with butter if you don’t believe in high carbs….me.

  18. Good Morning Wolfpack!
    I have spent the past week trying to get caught on reading what I have missed here. Good to see the regulars and quite a few new ones.
    I had asked you to pray for my sister as she was having bleeding on the brain. She was in and out of the hospital several times but is now in a home doing rehab. She has improved quite a bit but still has a long way.
    The last time I posted I was finishing up school and getting ready to go on a cruise with my Mom. I finished with all A’s 🙂 and we had a great time going to Jamaica, Grand Cayman and Cozumel! I got back home just 4 days before Christmas.
    DH had to go to Nashville to see a specialist the first week of Jan. He will be having surgery in April. It is not life threatening but will make life better for him.
    I started back to school this week but I am only taking one class as tax season is getting under way. I have already prepared a few returns this week. I am glad to be earning $$’s again.
    We have been living off our stores for the past few weeks so supplies are starting to get low. As soon as my income starts coming in we will be doing major restocking. This week all I have been doing is making plans to expand the garden area. We want to more than double what we had last year. I have checked on what seeds are on hand and what I need to get. This next week we plan to build rabbit hutches. We have a neighbor that raises meat rabbits and he said that he would sell us a few of them. We are going to put together a worm bin. We need all of the home grown fertilizer that we can get! 🙂 We also need more chickens.
    Later today we are going down the road and gather up all of the pine straw that we can get (no $). We are going to put it around all of our raised beds to cut down on mowing to save money and time. This is the first weekend without rain in several weeks.
    Good to be back among good people. Prayers to all.

  19. Not much. I bought a small electric heater that runs on 750 watts on high and 350 on low. It’s called Vornado. I’ll be able to run it off my inverter tied to a deep cycle battery. I just tried it in a small room and seems to work well. Also bought six more 60W light bulbs, incons. That’s it for this week.

    • Hey Michigan Mike, Are you doing okay this winter? My cousin has had 4 feet of snow and ice so far since Jan. 1. I’m thinking of all of you. Hang in there!

      • fmwb: thanks for the concern. Yeah, we in the northeast suburbs of Detroit got more snow so far than usual. We’re also getting more sub freezing tempts than usual. but we’ll make it.

    • Michigan Mike & ALL,
      There is a loophole in the anti-incandescent light bulb law, and a company has successfully exploited it, and is now manufacturing bulbs here in the US. I knew that “rough service” bulbs could still be produced, but these are generally pretty pricey, and are made primarily for use in trouble light, construction sites, etc. These folks have gotten a license to make these things. If you go to the web site, take a quick look at the History link. This is what America is all about, stepping up to the plate and hitting the ball, and these folks do it for a reasonable price. (http://www.newcandescent.com)

      • Plus the ban is mostly on the A19 bulb which is your standard bulb shape. Most specialty incandescent bulbs and three way bulbs are excluded. There are some led bulbs out now that are in the $10 range and will last maybe for 15 -20 years . So in the long run they will cost way less than incandescent bulbs I cost and energy use. If you are on solar or battery power they will use very little energy..

        • axelsteve says:

          I am epeleptic and those dam nwo bulbs can give some people seizures. some children are very intolerant to nwo light. The geniuses in government did not take that into consideration.The dumb donkeys.

          • Hi, Axelsteve,

            “The geniuses in government did not take that into consideration.”

            They may well have thought about it, and in their infinite wisdom decided that the cost to epileptics is outweighed by the ‘benefits to society’.

            After all, they are the wise elites we need to direct our lives. We aren’t capable, and they are, so they have the right to give us orders for our own good.

            Pretty much it is the updated version of the White Man’s Burden, to take care of his little brown brothers who are forever, by our nature, incapable of making our own best decisions. The White Man’s Burden has now been expanded to cover all of us, no matter what color our skin or of theirs. Only government employees are wise enough to rule us.

            At least, it seems to me that is what they think of themselves, and of us. We are incompetent. They are Wise. All Hail the Great White Father.

        • George,
          I use both incandescent and CFL, and have looked at the LED bulbs, which are getting less expensive by the day; however, to all of us country folks, an incandescent bulb is not always just for lighting. We have four of them in our basement, and on really cold days like those we have had recently, we simply turn on the basement lights, and the pipes don’t freeze. I know people who use them in well pits, and to help keep the chicks or other small critters warm. The energy they use and the heat they radiate is often something we actually need out here in the land of unheated outbuildings, and that just seems to go past the ignoramuses in the government who never have a problem with a CFL coming on in their heated attached garages. I’m betting that my light bulbs use less energy overall than keeping their garages heated and cooled.

          • Schatzie Ohio says:

            So true about using the light bulbs for heat. We have used them for baby chicks in the past. We also use the bulbs for keeping our potted lemon tree above freezing.
            During the Polar Vortex our attached garage got down to 22 degrees. When I saw how much the temperature was going to drop, we brought the lemon tree into the house.

      • OP: thanks for the link. I’ll check it out.

        • Buckwheat says:

          just fyi, tractor supply has the brooder chick bulbs on sale for $8 for 2. They throw out a lot of heat.

      • I stocked over 100 incandescent bulbs starting 3 years ago.
        I tried the CFLs, saw no difference in my electric bill, hated the lighting, read about the cheap ones causing fires, removed them and stored in the attic.
        I even found 100 and 75s last year still on the shelves at Kmart.

  20. I usually spend a part of January inspecting my preps. This is what I found out;

    2 years ago I oven canned a number of dry items like flour, grits, corn meal, quick oats, and potato flakes. The worst item was the flour which had lost it’s vac/seal totally. The two best items were the oats and the potato flakes which averaged 2-out of 12 failure. However having a “Butter Flavor”, even in a good sealed jar, the flakes had started to smell funky.

    Secondly I checked on the powdered pool shock that I had stored in a water tight Tupperware type container, sealed with tape, and found that pool shock gives off enough gas that it bulged the sides of the container. No more storing pool shock for this cowboy!

    Sold off my Kero Sun kerosene heater along with my 3 year old stock of 50 gallons of K-1 to a fellow prepper and purchased x3 Mr. Heater brand propane room heaters along with a stock of 1lb. and 20 lb. tanks.

    Discovered that there is this drink called “Bourbon Whiskey”, which tastes pretty good on these long cold Minnesota nights over ice. Maybe I’ll stock up on a bottle, or two, just in case Spring never comes back.

    Have a blessed Lord’s Day.

    • I grew up on something we call Jack. It’s made in Tennessee. Mighty good on cold winter nights. Makes good cough syrup too.

      • That’s what I have been forgetting to use to treat my cough! tonight a bottle is coming out of deep storage!

        • We have the flu here, major staple in rural NC is good old” rock candy” 1/2 cup honey, 1/2 cup liquor ( the stronger the better), juice of one lemon, and 4 smashed up peppermint candies… shake and then heat in a warm oven until its blended together… take a couple T as needed, breaks up the cough and you sleep like a baby!

      • Mary in GA says:

        Sounds like my DH good friend, Jack Daniels!

      • I grew up on something called Jim. My dad would make us hot toddies when we were sick–boiling water, Jim Beam, lemon juice and honey. I got sick a lot as a kid. 🙂

        • Are we talk’n the unholy Trinity here, Jim Beam, George Dickle, and Jack Daniels ?

          Actually whiskey is sort of a hobby of mine. Besides reading a number of books on the subject, I also collect rare bottles.

          Did you know that India is the biggest whiskey market in the world and that the Japanese make some of the best malt whiskey (scotch).

          As far as the unholy Trinity, Beam Black 8 year old label is a great buy. Gentleman Jack is always worth the extra money. While my favorite is George Dickle #12 for it’s complex taste.

          • We try to buy liquor and other spirits made in the USA. Can you list which ones are aside from Jack Daniels. I understand Smirnoff is.

          • We try to buy liquor and other spirits made in the USA. Can you list which ones are aside from Jack Daniels? I understand Smirnoff is.

          • Sorry about the double post.

          • Ga Red some things are worth asking twice.

          • SCPrepperPoppa says:

            My DW enjoys her Blantons, distilled in our homestate of KY, and of course Makers Mark. She is mightily impressec that a Minnesota guy, Ghost, knew that much about bourbon.

          • Encourager says:

            ohhhhhhhhh…Maker’s Mark! Makes the best chocolate pecan bourbon pie ever!

          • k. fields says:

            Made here or American owned? A lot of the alcohol producing companies in the US are now owned by foreign firms even though the product is still made here.
            Jim Beam and Maker’s Mark were just bought out by Japan’s Suntory.
            Diageo, a British firm, owns Johnnie Walker, Smirnoff and Tanqueray.
            Chivas Regal, Absolut and Jameson are owned by the French company Pernod Ricard.
            And the list goes on.

            Jack Daniel’s and Southern Comfort (my personal favorite) though, are still American owned.

          • Did not know that about Smirnoff. I’ll have to let the DH know.

          • I hate even the mention of Southern Comfort. Back in college, we used to drink Dr. SoCo–Dr. Pepper and Southern Comfort. Yuck. What dumb kids we were. (Although this was a step up from Smirff Piss–Smirff Berry Blue Koolaid and all the clear alcohols.)

          • I can’t drink SoCo thanks to Hunch Punch – kook-aid with SoCo – back in my early college days. Some idiot spiked the Hunch Punch with qualudes once. That was the first time I couldn’t drive myself home and I didn’t drink that much.

      • Those great folks in Tennessee that make that “Jack” available to us have now added Honey to some of it for our medicinal purposes. Oddly enough They call it “Tennessee Honey”.

        We keep it in the freezer for when our throats get itchy.

    • Keep the pool shock in its original bag.
      I have it stored for 4 years now; no problem.
      Mistake taking it from its little plastic bag.

      • By the way–ever heard of a pool supplies store blowing up??
        Nope–I didn’t think so.

        • I had my pool shock stored in a 1 gallon tupperware container with duct tape around the lid, still in its bags. I also had those long barbecue type lighters in a tupperware container sitting next to it ona shelf. I went out and looked and every single one of the lighters has had severe rust appear on the metal portions. I moved the chlorine out to my shed where it will have lots more ventilation.

  21. Hunker-Down says:

    We found some Bear Creek soup on sale for $3.27. The expiration date is mid-2015.

    I found a good definition of the U.S. Dollar: “Any item produced in infinite quantities, and at zero cost MUST BE WORTHLESS as an elementary proposition of logic/arithmetic.”
    It’s from the following article:
    This article, and others, convinces me (I’m gullible?) that hyperinflation is a certainty. Hyperinflation at 15% per month would put that bag of dried soup at $17.50 in one year. History shows that hyperinflation has approached 30% per month. The same math would put todays $20 per ounce silver at $107 in 12 months.

    I have been wondering if we could raise meat rabbits as a means of enhancing our diet after TSHTF. I spent several hours on the internet looking at sites that raise meat rabbits, both for home consumption and commercially. We don’t have a barn or acreage so housing rabbits outside in Wisconsin is an issue for us. I still have to find out if they are legal in our area. Setup costs are in the neighborhood of $500, and 3 bunnies about $100. It looks like pelleted feed cost would put the price of a dressed out rabbit around $2.50 a pound. As long as society stays glued together, those numbers stink. We can get chicken and pork at that price without spending hours of labor to get it.
    BUT: after TSHTF we won’t be able to buy brood stock, grocery store chicken or pork, or cage material or feed pellets. During Wisconsin winters pellets will help them survive but how do we solve that problem after we run out of pellets? We’re trying to prep but don’t have the answers on rabbit farming or the money.

    Don’t forget “Fast and Furious”; Eric Holder is still not in jail.

    Don’t forget Benghazi; Hillary will want your vote.

    • I keep seeing Bear Creek soup mix pouches at Big Lots. I’ll have to do some label reading to see if it’s safe for us. Sounds like several on here like the stuff.

      • Mary in GA says:

        I’ve bought some of the Bear Creek soup mixes at Big Lots pretty cheap, then put them in canning jars with an oxygen absorber, they hold up well!

        • Mary in GA,
          Do you keep them in the pouch when you do this or empty them. Kept in the Mylar pouch they come in, they hold up well without any problems or axtra packaging.

          • Mary–that is my next project.
            Portioned Cheddar Broccoli and freeze dried broccoli in snack ziploks stored in mason jars.

          • Mary in GA says:

            Ohio Prepper, I empty the bag into the jar, then put in an oxygen absorber and it seals, that’s how I store the vegetables that I dehydrate too.

      • GA Red,
        Our local Big Lots has a wide variety of them in stock for $3.00 all of the time.

        • I managed a short trip to Big Lots last night. I read a couple of the packages of potato soup and may add some to the storage but they aren’t officially gluten-free. I try to make sure long term storage is.

          • Try the Bear’s Creek cheddar broccoli.
            just add frozen broccoli and it makes it much better(great by itself, just not much broccoli).

      • so, i was thinkin' says:

        If you have a Safeway, you can pick up the Bear Creek mixes when they are buy one get one free ( 2 for 4.99) or the Shore Lunch wken they are buy one get one free ( 2 for 3.99). I only buy them then.

    • Hunker-Down,
      I don’t know about up your way. I can get large meat rabbits for about $15 each. We are using scrap wood to build a hutch. When my boys were little we bought 2 baby rabbits (Easter) then a friend gave us 2 adult rabbits and in a very short period of time we had 40 rabbits. When you consider how quickly they multiply that makes them worth a lot if you do not have access to meat and the manure is fantastic for the garden.

    • Look at feeding the rabbits home cut hay. Through the growing season you cut enough fresh grass and weeds to feed that day and to fill a drying rack. Give veggie scraps on the side as treats and keep a green limb in there for them to gnaw on . This way you have your on hay for winter and you never buy feed. It’s a European way to raise them that I read about years ago.

    • Most of the rabbit pellets are made of alfalfa. It grows in most places, I think. Once you plant it and get a good stand, it’s almost indestructible. Comes back year after year. The roots will penetrate 15′ into the ground. Rabbits love garden refuse, grass, etc. Dry grass is their favorite nesting material when it gets close to the date they have their babies.

      • Hey It's Dave says:

        Re: Rabbit Feed
        A book I have on Aquaponics suggests making fish-food pellets from a mixture of cut grasses (in this case, duckweed), chopped veggies and past-shelf-life flour. Mix it with water, run it through a meat grinder (pasta maker?), break up the pellets and let dry.
        Seems like it should work

    • Well, ‘what difference at this point does it make?’
      Sorry–couldn’t help it!!! 🙂

  22. Got back on track a little bit this week. Added the following to my supplies: 100 22lr hollow point, Filled 2 20lb tanks, 1 roll silver dimes,
    Hand held propane torch, solder, flux, extra torch tank, StingEze Itch relief .5oz spray, 1 48oz Hershey’s Syrup, 2 1lb Allegra Linguine, 2 1lb Allegra Ziti, 3 15oz Hormel Chili w/ Beans, 2 15oz Luck’s Fried Apples, 2 1lb 04oz Duchess Pineapple tidbits,2 20oz Dinty Moore Beef Stew, 1
    12oz Hormel Corned Beef, and 1 12oz Spam.

    Replacing the old bow window in the dining room. Going to keep the old bow window to make a small green house for herbs, lettuce, etc. for the winter months.

    Going to buy a chest freezer and a dehydrator soon. Need to sell a Civil War carbine first.

    Stay warm!

  23. Really feel like a slug this week. Did some research on Zaycon foods and decided to pass since I really don’t have room in the freezer. Just read above that prices are going up so now I wonder. Decided to join Costcos after comparing them and Sam’s. Will get a membership tomorrow when I drive to town to take the kids to the skateboard park. Other than that I had a stomach virus and we scheduled our 10 year olds surgery to remove his tonsils and adnoids. We weren’t sure we were going to do it but after his 5th case of Strep in 6 months, and not sleeping well, it is time. The biggest change is that my son bought a house this week. He is the first of our adult kids to do so and we are really proud of him. Now that he and his wife are not renters we will see how that changes prep planning. If he is like his Dad, it would take a lot for him to leave his house but they are in the city which is not what I prefer. It is faster to get to each other by water than highway so that is a consideration. Safer too.

  24. It was a slow week in the prepping area. Attended PrepperFest Columbus today. Pretty much a bust. Perhaps 2 dozen vendors; but, nothing unique or priced all that well. Did pick up a few business cards from some folks whose products I may look at in the future.

  25. cynthia rafler says:

    This was a week where I could not afford to do much prepping, so I did a lot of conserving and contemplating. Shopped for this weeks groceries at the .99 cent store. Hoping some of the non-perishables will not be used and will be saved in the STHF storage. Made an irish stew out of those little breakfast steaks, realizing this is becoming a luxury. Conserved water, Southern California is in a drought. No watering garden or lawn. 5 minute showers every other day instead of 20 minute daily that use to be a luxury. Conserving car gas and maintenance by only going where needed. This winter we have been lucky that it has been the mildest (global-warming) and we have not had to use the ac or heater for the house. This week we were also lucky to escape small earthquake shakers and high-santa wind fueled brush fires. It’s always something, just try to take the hits as they come.

  26. Just a little this week – it will be minimal for a while as we work on paying off debt. I did discover the International Farmer’s Market and stocked up on several herbs and spices, along with organic lentils, dried white limas, a bottle of muscadine wine and eggs. The spice prices are awesome – turmeric, cardamom, anise, cumin, curry, cinnamon sticks and more – 1/4 to 1/2 pound packages for $1 to $2 each. 2/3 pound cinnamon sticks for $2.

    In other news, we went to the funeral of a 20-year-old young man today. Requesting prayers for his mom and family. He and a friend drowned just after the new year and were found just this past Monday. Hypothermia was a factor.

    Time to catch up on what others have done.

    • Mary in GA says:

      So very sorry for the young man who drowned, I will pray for his family. I know two other families who have lost young sons to drowning in lakes.
      What is the International Farmer’s Marker? How do you access it?

      • axelsteve says:

        I did some gill net fishing in Washington state when I was a teenager. We would joke that we would not need lifejackets since the hypothermia would kill us before we drowned.

      • If you have seen the news lately, you know who I’m talking about. Two boys drowned in Lanier. Thank you for the prayers.

        The farmer’s market is in Dekalb County on East Ponce de Leon. Huge parking lot – just walk in.

        I’m probably killing OPSEC but I don’t have a lot anyway.

        • Mary in GA says:

          I have seen the news and pictures, so terrible. I can’t even imagine what their families are going through
          I’m never in DeKalb County, avoid the Big A when possible, thanks for letting me know where, I’m close to SC.
          I will continue to pray for the families of the two boys.

    • They are included in my prayers. Too many people drown in the lakes here in GA. Such a waste of two fine young men who would have made the world a better place.

      • Thanks Kate. Like I told Mary, if you’ve watched the news, you saw the two boys on the news.

  27. Not much in the area of preps this week Just been pricing the parts to replace my main water line since I have a bad leak in it. Turn on the water every couple days for and hour or two and take a shower and do laundry. Have used my camp shower a few times also and have a big 2 gal water jug at the kitchen and bathroom sink to wash with. Thing I really miss the most is the ice maker!!! Although I have been freezing ice in big plastic trays and making big giant ice cube and kind of like them now.
    Biggest prep was shopping at Kroger and they had pasta on sale for 77cents for full pound bag so bought 15 pounds of various ones.

  28. mom of three says:

    Went to Walmart, if I go before 9:00 I can get a good parking space.
    Bought dishwashing tabs, bogo, on stayfree pad (ugh) two bottles of Bayer asprin, I bought two and saved $5.00. Bought 2 pack of dove deodorant $3.94 . Use lots of coupons, on what I use.

    Went to Winco, looked at all the bulk they carry. Boughton pizza flour, bay leaves, refilled water bottles, mac & cheese, ( 1 )12 pack of toliet paper, lots of vegetables. We went to our local Lowes, on the clearance rack picked up two large bottles of Ball salsa mix , makes 8 pints. I do jazz it up with more peppers. I also found 3 Ball, low sugar pectin also 1 dollar a bottle makes 22 half pints all good for this canning year. Walmart, did not have the wide mouth lids. Winco, did something tells me I better buy the lids in bulk this year. I made enough pizza sauce to make four pizzas, found a great tasting recipe made it has the family rate it. 10 we have a winner. I made two batches of refried beans, and double batch of navy bean soup. Made a blackberry pie, banna snack cake, and an elephants ear out of the pie dough. That was yesterday, I was tired in fact I’m going to lay down again:) Have a great long weekend. ?

  29. Patriot Farmer says:

    I grabbed a couple boxes of ammo, 18 cross bow bolts, 12 emergency meal packets, and spent some time at the range. I also joined a gym this week.

  30. DH started our three day weekend with the flu. He is miserable and is so congested he can’t sleep well. He sounds terrible. Less than thrilled at the prospect of getting it too but feel it coming on no matter what. Prayers for us please.

    No preps this week to speak of. Got out some chicken noodle soup mix and some canned chicken meat for our weekend’s meal. Neither of us hungry.

    DH decided that Jim Beam makes an excellent cough medicine. It had been a long time since we indulged. I “practiced” fighting off the flu with some Coke added to it where he preferred his on the rocks to fight off those hot flashes he said he was getting.

    Have a great weekend folks and stay safe!

    • Mrs. B.,

      Mucinex works get to break up congestion in the lungs. That’s one OTC medication I think everyone should have in their flu kit.

  31. ozhillbilly says:

    Hi Pack. Still trying to get over this pneumonia thing so not much prepping this week. I go in for a follow up chest x-ray this week to see if it’s done. Sure has taken the giddy-up out of this old man.

    I did manage to hit our local every-other-month gun show today. I found a stripped used lower for $50.00 for an AR build I’m thinking about. It appears to be a little more heavily built than the Anderson’s and Spikes you see on the market today. Anyway, I’ve always wanted to build one myself so I’m looking forward to this project.

    I skipped the last show but using the previous (four months ago?) show as a reference I believe ammunition prices are trending back up. One thousand rounds PMC .223/5.56 was $420.00??? Seems the last show I attended the same ammo was in the $320.00 range. I also saw a vendor selling bricks of .22 for $60.00. He was the one with .22 ammo for sale.

    Guess that’s all I have to tell this week. Stay well and keep your powder dry.

    • Sorry about hitting the report link. Wish they would separate the links a bit. Here in WNC ammo availability is up and prices are down a bit if you shop smartly. A pleasant surprise.

    • axelsteve says:

      oz hillbilly. I have been picking up 223 and 556 brass when we go plinking. It may come in handy for barter in the future.

  32. JeffintheWest says:

    Not much, though we did finally manage a limited grocery run — got a few things, and are stocked back up on some necessary food items. Was kind of important since we’d pretty much eaten down our food reserves this past month. Slowly rebuilding now. Went back to the doc and got the stent taken out that he put in last month. Am feeling much better, though I still have some issues. Hopefully this next week sees those resolved and we can begin some preliminary work for next spring’s garden (yay!). Still pretty much taking it easy, though….

    Prayers for everyone out there who needs them — especially Becky and her DH who are still working through his medical stuff.

    • Hey Jeff,
      Good to hear you are on the mend. You can’t keep a good man down, so I am not surprised that you have been able to stay positive through this trial, but it is a blessing to hear your positive thoughts.
      Take care, friend.

  33. Hello pack, wow this winter has been one for the record books, it’s amazing how ‘global warming’ causes extreme cold temps…yeah right. I received an ILBE MARPAT pack this week and it looks like brand new. It is a hoss and I can hardly wait to begin packing it for use. We reorganized our larder today and found some items we had forgotten about and now freed up some additional space. I have begun research on booking a Maine bear hunt for this fall. Prayers out to everyone, keep warm and safe.

  34. canadagal says:

    Busy week! Mon.among other things had to get my agenda ready for church ladies meeting, Tues. ladies meeting,& looking for some items in the church which I found out later had been thrown out as they had gotten mold on them, Thurs went to city for DH optomitrist app.Yea he gets his licence back since cataract surgery. Some shopping. Some quilting fabric, essential oils, dried elderberries, citric acid, 2 lg boxes of baking soda, heavy duty battery for tractor, dog food and a few other things. Time spent on seeing we can’t afford a new bumper cover for van…$800. It’s given us grief for a couple years & then ripped lose on snow in yard. Got It tied up now. Also couldn’t find a printer we liked. Rushed home & had 20 min. to finish food for community pot luck meet & greet for our new pastor. Today a funeral for a church member & our ladies were preparing the lunch. Hopefully next week is less rushed. So far just a trip back to eye surgeon to make sure everything is OK with cataract surgery. In spare time worked on a quilt & rearranged some stuff in pantry, made a batch of granola from a new recipe & it was very yummy, & DH & I cleaned the small pipes on the heat exchanger on our wood burning stove. Messy job!!! DH had been working on his lawn roller that wipes on herbicide. He built it last year & while it worked great he found it wasn’t sturdy enough so is beefing it up a bit.

    We finally got out of 4 wks of deep freeze…-30 to-40 plus wind chill & for the past week it has really warmed up but this was brought in with very strong wind up to 120+ km/hr that flipped semis, took off roofs, took down trees etc. Hopefully the cold didn’t damage our fruit trees.

    Have a great week everyone…stay well, start learning a new skill, do a good deed for someone, & be thankful for all you have.

  35. I want to say thanks to everyone for the information here! I feel I have came sooo far in the last month. I think it was about a month ago I first posted.

    For Michelle BamBam and other herbalists, I want to say y’all have given me so much information on helping my family’s health. I am very familiar on how to prepare tinctures, infusions, oils and such due to my spiritual practice. I never knew (or was interested) which herbs I already have could be used for medical uses.

    I know several of you go to Mountain Rose for herb purchases. Has anyone ever used http://www.herbalcom.com? They only sell by the pound and shipping is only $7.95 flat rate. I used them when I owned my spiritual supply shop. I have had contact with over 50 different herbs from there and never found the quality lacking. I hope some of you can save some serious money there.

    On the prepping front, I have been couponning fairly hard the last few weeks and officially ran out of room in my pantry. So, this week I cleaned out and condensed my hall closet and moved a bunch of stuff there. Now it is getting full. 😀

    I did make a mad dash through the Dollar Tree and picked up 3-6 months worth of personal hygiene products for the whole family. I also grabbed some first aid stuff while I was there.

    I also ran out of room in my freezer from all the bags of veggies I was able to pick up recently. At $.25-$.50 a 12-16 oz bag, I couldn’t pass them up. With the lack of space, I have decided to look into canning. I can’t wait to get my caner!

    Does anyone else feel they get more research done than actually prepping? Or, Is that just from being new?

    • JeffintheWest says:

      While I can’t speak for anyone else, I know I spend an awful lot of time reading and researching stuff. It’s saved me money and time more often than not, and if all else fails, I ask folks here what they think. You’d be surprised how many people on here have experience with the things you are just learning how to do (or, actually, maybe you wouldn’t) and everyone is willing to share and help. One of the reasons I really like this blog!

    • We disconnected the cable. So I spend a lot of time reading and researching.

      • Here, I disconnected in Nov., 2008–I don’t miss is, Gene doesn’t miss it and it freed up over $4000 so far to spend on preps.

      • We lived without cable and internet at the house for almost a year. Since DH and I have the electronic leashes with a data plan, we were OK without it. However since the eleven year old has to have internet (for school) and the middle offspring started school as well, we hooked it back up. That’s why I started couponning, to pay for it. I can honestly thank the internet for the kick in the pants to start prepping. I just hope I didn’t start too late.

    • Okiebama,

      Thanks for the link for herbalcom.com. They are a little cheaper than Mountain Rose on the few things I checked. However while it says they have some herbs that are certified organic,few say they are. If organic is not a priority for someone and they don’t mind ordering by the lb (I always order by the lb or multiple lbs), then I would think this would be the place. Mountain Rose also offers a 10% discount for lbs, so I would need to compare that as well.

      However, they do have a LOT of stuff that Mountain Rose does not have, so I have bookmarked their link and will spend some significant time checking them out today.

      Also, note that anyone wanting to take an herbal medicine class, Mountain Rose herbs has a list on their site of some of the places that offer them – and if you are taking an herbal medicine class, and you tell them when you order, you also get 25% off your entire order.

      I’m taking The Integrative Herbology Correspondence (Integrating Ayurveda & Herbology for the current times) from Evergreen Herb garden in Placerville, CA, which was $400 and is excellent so far.

      • Thanks for the link! I will have to look into the online courses. I have a well respected herbalist in my area and she offers herbal medicine classes. They are very reasonable except for the time commitment. I wish I could but, I can’t commit every Saturday for nine months. The excellent part is she teaches to native wild plants in the area and takes the classes on walks every other week to identify the plants.

        • Oh what I wouldn’t give to have your herbalist around. Will she allow you to take some of the walks with her, and maybe do some of your studies at other times or in other ways? Can’t hurt to ask.

          • I am soooo sorry!! I hit the report button!

            I will have to ask her. I would love to learn the what’s what in this area.

            I do have a question for ya. My 11 year old has asthma, how would I treat her in a SHTF situation once her back up supply of meds were gone? This has to be my biggest fear and, I can’t find squat that does not tell me to get her to a doctor.

          • There are several things you can do for asthma – what I do for mine is either Yogi brand Breathe Deep tea (I have tons of boxes!) and lobelia tincture.

            Lobelia tincture is fast working and works a lot better for me then the rescue inhaler I used to take (I REFUSED to take SIngular or steroids!

            Anyway lobelia tincture is made with apple cider vinegar instead of alcohol. The active ingredients need the acid to be drawn out properly.

            Fill a jar about 1/2 full of dried lobelia, the pour in apple cider vinegar (organic is always best) and put on a lid and shake it daily for 2-6 weeks (if I need it before it’s done, I start taking out a little while it’s still ‘working’ but let the rest go the full six weeks), then strain out the lobelia.

            Dosage is 10-20 DROPS. Do not assume if a little is good, a lot is better. Lobelia is called puke weed – for good reason. A really BIG dose can also be toxic. However, at the regular doses, she will be fine.

            It works by dilating the bronchial tubes and works fast. It usually lasts me 3 or 4 hours, but if she needs it you could give her more in a half hour or hour if it was a real severe asthma attack.

            I no longer use my rescue inhaler, as lobelia works better for me.

            Lobelia also relaxes muscles and pretty much everything else too.

          • I did it again!! I’m sorry. Darn report button and smart phones.

            Thank you so much! She does not use her rescue much at all if she keeps up on her Duleara. (Sp) However, if she does not take it for about a month she will end up in the ER. When she was younger she wouldn’t tell us when she ran out. At $300 an inhaler we are thankful her Dr. Supplies us with sample inhalers when he has them.

            Would a smaller (3-5 drops) once or twice a day work as a preventative?

          • S'wt Tater says:

            Everlasting…Rabbit Tobacco for acute episode, burn leaves in small container, let her breathe in the smoke. works for dh as fast as albuterol. I have made a tincture from some, but we have not tried it, not needed yet. I use tea for cough congestion. to make tea use one ounce of entire plant..to two cups of water steep for 10 min. reheat and steep 10 more min.don’t boil.it becomes bitter .but does work..use in one ounce/daily amounts top loosen congestion, and to treat diarrhea. It replaces the enzymes in the gut and is also an antiviral….among other properties.

          • S’wt Tater,

            This next year when the rabbit tobacco goes to seed, would you please be so kind as to send me some seed?

            I am now again in a place that I could probably grow it.

          • S'wt Tater says:

            be glad to, crop was down here this year, so I did not gather.

    • Researching IS prepping! And yes for me, when I was new to it, I spent almost all of my spare time researching, but it sounds to me like you are doing a fair amount of food storage as well keep up both.

    • I spend a lot of time reading and researching on my tab. Usually run the battery down by mid-afternoon.

    • I’m new also and find I do a lot of research. Being short on cash it has been a great way to still stay productive and save money. Everyone has been so great here and I am learning so much!

    • S'wt Tater says:

      dehydrate…to save freezer space.5lbs of corn will go in a qt jar,if you pack it,put in oxygen absorbersabt 20 servings, seal with a new lid.4 lbs of mixed veggies to a qt.

  36. Mary in GA says:

    Been a busy livestock week, our two fainting goats were very ready to kid and finally did. Each had a set of twins, the first accepted both, the second accepted one and rejected one, so I have been keeping one here at home, not at the farm!! He is doing well, almost too well, as he has become very rambunctious I am bottle feeding him and he is wearing a diaper, I am too old for a newborn, but that’s what I have! His mom/nanny bite the cord and opened the sack but then left him lying there cold and wet. Thank goodness we were there or he wouldn’t have made it long. My hens (Golden Comets) are laying well, almost like it’s summer, no apparent slow down in production but then, in GA/SC even when it’s cold, it’s only cold for a little while! God Bless and keep prepping!

  37. ladyhawthorne says:

    I’ve been helping Mom in the house all week so didn’t think I did anything until I remembered I did pick up the 1 allowed box of ammo at Walmart, sadly it was only 50 rounds. They also had holiday baking items marked down and I picked up 6 pkgs of dark chocolate chips for $1 each. Also some flower seeds for the front garden to bring in the bees.

    Ordered and received some Dr Christopher herbal joint capsules and some sinus capsules. Hope the joint ones help my aching knees, I hate taking Nsaids for very long, they are hard on the kidneys.

    Cleaned out more stuff in the house and took 3 bags to Goodwill.

    Mom had shoulder surgery and didn’t need but a few of her pain pills, so the rest will be kept ‘for just in case’ as I told her. She & Dad don’t get prepping.

  38. Increased my water stprage capacity by an additional two weeks

  39. Alittle2late says:

    Well where do I start….t.A lot has happened in the last 10 months. I found the most amazing woman and married Her!!!! This is just one of the many many amazing qualitys She is a 2 time Florida archery Champ.
    Quit my Job so I could cash out….I start back on monday with a better position and better hours lol.Spent the last ten months getting the homestead setup. 10×16 chicken coop 28 ladies and 6 roo’s. Got 3 broody hens that im gonna let do their thing starting in mid febuary. We average 18 to 23 eggs a day.even in this cold northern weather. they pay their own way and we eat fresh eggs and enjoy their sillyness. the deep bedding system in the coop helps hold the cold out.The 6 guinea fowl patrol the yard and do a very good job of it. we tried goats neither of us like the taste of anything made from it so we sold them to a little girl for 4-H. We got 4 rabbits. Mostly as pets for the time being. we aquired over 1800 canning jars 3 pressure canners and 2 waterbath canners and enough tattler lids for them all. we filled 800 or so this summer and fall. I took a side job for a butchershop to learn the basics,now i can do our own.
    We are tryng to buy the 3 acres of vacant land next to us that a woman in England owns. She has over a 1000 acres in this area. So far not going so well…. My wife and I cook for the needy at our church twice a month. I finally got baptized. I realized my arms are to short to box with the lord. like I said alot has happened.

  40. patientmomma says:

    Hello Wolf pack! Not too much this past week; been busy sorting, packing and emptying drawers before the movers come at end of the month. I have been at the farm to beginning to unpacking the POD, exhausting working especially in cold weather. When you have to pack it all up you realize you have way too much!!
    Receive an ammo order, a new exterior holster for the hand gun and a carrying case for my deer rifle. Bought FD sausage from EE, which was on group special. I got a couple of friends to go in with me in order to meet the min purchase requirement for group rates. Received some breakfast granola MREs, which I ordered ages ago, but just came.

    I can’t remember everything I did or bought or preserved as I just keep putting one foot in front of the other from 4 am to 9 pm; go to bed and start all over again the next day. I tell myself, this to shall pass…

    Have a safe and wonderful week!

    • Florida Gal says:


      I feel your pain! This is the week of the move to TN for us. It is a ton of work but the rewards once we get there and settled will be worth every minute! Hang in there and have a safe move!

  41. A lite week again .
    Picked up 10 lbs of bacon will can half and eat half.
    Lined up David Nash to be guest speaker at our February group meeting here in Lewis/Perry co. Tn. Will be on Aquaponics . That’s it for this week.

  42. Schametti says:

    Man, I’ve been stuck under a pretty dark Karmic cloud lately. But I’m still stubbornly hanging in there. 🙂 A couple days before Christmas I stood up from my chair, and hit the floor like a ton of bricks. Something in my back just plum gave out. So for three weeks I had done little but lay on the floor, crawl myself to the bathroom, and struggle to make it in to a chiropractor. Over five appointments he has alligned me back up pretty okay again. Still hurts like a booger, but at least I can walk. It’s a pretty humbling feeling crawling to the bathroom, that’s all I’ve got to say about that. It wasn’t even a good lesson. How can I accomedate THAT in a prepping, apocolyptic situation?? I have no idea.. lol.

    This week I’ve been feeling a lot better, so I’ve been making up for lost time. I had a brokerage account, ‘come of age’ and aside from getting back the money I had put into it, (for five lonnnng years), I made almost three grand on top of it, which was all put into my account this week, and I’ve certainly been taking advantage of that.

    Before I tell you all what I’ve done to prep this week, I wanted to ask a little bit of advice. Naturally, due to opsec reason, Hubby refuses to let me tell anyone about this money, this account, or what I should be doing with it.. ..Now, I know Glenn Beck is either loved or hated, lol, but I’m in the love camp, and I’ve been listening to him a lot lately. A couple weeks ago he had a guy on his show who had written a book called Game Plan. His name was Kevin Freedman. They talked the entire hour about the goverment needing to pay back the countries that we had been holding gold for, (as part of the gold standard trust agreement), and went on to discuss Rehypothecation. and how we no longer HAVE the gold that Germany, Brittain, China, etc.. are going to be wanting back, and how our dollar will tank, and the very real threat that, like Greece, the money in our bank accounts could very well be seized, in order to repay our countries debt. Etc Etc Etc..

    My initial plan was to just buy more silver, and/or gold and tuck it away, in case our dollar is worthless.. but then one of my life-minded prepping girlfriends DID bring up a good point… That if things really get bad enough, no one is going to be trading for silver, because it just won’t matter, and that everyone will only be focused on food and goods, and supplies for bartering to survive. She might be right. I DO HAVE a fair bit of silver set aside, as an investment, in case we ever do get to that point again.. But my question is.. what should I do with the money that just got out of banker jail? lol. Obviously, I don’t feel comfortable leaving it in the bank for the government to ever possibly seize. I don’t want stacks of cash that might be worth little to nothing in the very near or distant future, and I don’t know if I have the space to put it all into supplies, though I’ve done a lot of spending this week. 🙂 So what would you guys do if you were me, in order to make the best choice with the funds you have?

    And of course, there’s always my very real fear, that I’ll put all my savings into supplies.. and absolutely NOTHING will ever happen for me to ever need them, and then everyone who’s ever made fun of me for this lifestyle in the first place will get to do their pent up “I Told You So” speeches….

    Okay, so anyway, What I did to prepare this week.

    From the local gun shop, I got my new conceal and carry princess out of layaway. An army green, Beretta Nano. I got a couple boxes of nine, and .22 mag to put away into the stash.

    From Crossbreed.com, I got a new Beretta nano appendix hip holster, and bought the Hubs an inside the waistband holster for his Walther PPS.

    From amazon.com.. I bought several packets of heirloom seeds to (start) getting ready for gardening season. Purple Cherry Tomatos, Buttercrunch/Arugula/and Oak Leaf Lettuce, Stringless French Pole Beans.. Black Russian Krim Tomatos.. Spinach, Red Peppers, Cucumbers, Alpine Mignonette Strawberries.. Rainbow Carrots, and Wild Cherry Tomatos.

    Along with the garden seeds, I ordered Amaranth, Alfalfa, Chia, Red Clover, Broccoli, and Red Mustard Sprouting Micro-Greens, for my sprouting system. I’ve taken a bit of a break on these, got bored.. but will likely be starting up again, since it’s going to be free salad season. 🙂

    I bought the puppies a couple big bags of dogfood to put into the preping pantry. And from Sams, we carted home peanut butter, Nuttela, cooking oil, gravy mixes, iodized seasalt, flour, cornmeal, yeast, several packs of D batteries for the lanterns. A few bottles of bleach.

    From walmart we bought powdered milk, vinegar, tuna, a few bottles of shampoo, and several packages of wetwipes. We bought a carton of cigarettes for bartering. That one always hurts, they are soooo expensive. And for my post-doomsday entertainment reading library I bought Glen Beck; Miracles and Massacres, The Book Thief; by Markus Zusak.. Book Seven in the Glen Tate – 299 Days series, and the first two books in the “Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children series.

    From Emergency Essentials I ordered a small medic’s kit, with scalpel handle, extra blades, sissors, along with a fold out carry case, and plenty of bandages and things so that I can hopefully stop up and mop up all the cuts I am sure to give myself either during the apocolypse, and most likely, long before. 🙂 I also ordered several MRE zapplesauces, and MRE Raspberry Applesauces.. Margarine Powder, Sour Cream Powder, Brownie Mix.. Mountain House Mac and Cheese, all the #10 cans for those. An extra can opener, a goal zero solar/crank lantern, and the Mr. Heater Big Buddy Combo.. and another survival seed bank, (my third), for long term (hopefully) food independance.

    Not my typical ‘week’ in prepping, but since I haven’t had the time, money or able body to prep the last three, I had some time to make up. I know I’ve forgotten a few little things here and there, but those are the ones I remember without having to get up and go look, lol. Every time I think I’m doing okay, there are five more holes in my preps to fill. I hope you guys are all doing well, and keeping up the good fight. Love to all My Pack. ~A.

    • Scham’i,

      It’s good to hear from you. That’s a hard one with the extra money. If you’ve got your water and food supply taken care of, I would be tempted to keep a bit of cash on hand as a rainy day fund. Personally, I don’t think things are going to go downhill that quickly.

    • I would buy farmland, whether here or abroad.

      Here, the average age of a farmer is 69, very few young people are learning farming, and there are a thousand eaters for every American farmer. Think what will happen in 10 to 20 years to the price of food as the farmers die off from old age. Add this to the trend of local regulations nazis trying to prevent people from growing their own food in the suburbs. Now is the time to buy the farmland. Even if you get unlucky and it’s zoned “wilds” by the greenies you can probably stick a stealth food forest on it without them noticing.

      You can still get foreign farmland as an investment, and foreign real estate is one asset you can have in a foreign country that the IRS doesn’t track. Then rent it to a farmer. Farmland is pretty cheap in Paraguay, I hear.

      • paraguay is said to have one of the largest untapped sweet water reserves on the planet. understand the Bush family bought hundreds of acres over it. they may consent to sell us some when we are dying of thirst.

    • Schamwow! Our little energizer bunny of prepping! Girl, get yourself some pink flip flops with some of that cash! And books.. I think that’s going to be real currency if the economy goes to crap. People will remember where things are learned when there is no Internet anymore. I’ve found out local university libraries have ebooks for checkout, just need to figure out how to access them. Most require student login info. May have to do some online classes to get to those. They let you peruse the catalog, but ya gotta log in. Used to use the Baylor library in high school, gads, strolling in a college building wearing cutoffs and concert tee back in the 70’s.. Wish it was that easy again…and I still had that 17 yr old body! Anyway, glad you’re checking in and take care of that back. Try getting the DH to rub some arnica gel on it.

    • Nebraska Woman says:

      My grandmother used to say, “Everything in moderation.”
      I have all bases covered: some precious metals, some cash, farmland, medical and food supplies, barter items such as liquor except the gin which only in death would I give that up, firearms, and no mortgage.
      This took me years, but at 64, I feel blessed.
      I have put a new roof on the house, installed a fire stove in the kitchen, and have iron bars for all first floor windows and a couple of the second floor ones.
      I have room for animals, a chicken coop that bc would envy, and a huge barn.
      I would suggest that you put your eggs in different baskets, beginning with food and paying off debts if you have any.
      You mentioned people who would scoff at you if no shtf; I would offer that you cease speaking about your preps. Only 2 people know I do: my brother who is the most honest man I know, and a good friend.
      Sorry about your back. Hope you feel better soon.

      • Yes, when I first started out, preparing for uncertain tough times to come, I didn’t know about this place, (it’s been almost two years ago now), so I didn’t think anything of it when I told my friends and family what I was doing. I have learned A LOT since then, and never mention anything to anyone, save a best friend, and maybe my mother or aunt when they ask me questions, but even then, half the time I’m vague about it now. Those who remember still give me a hard time about it though. They think I’ve lost my mind. 🙂

        We don’t have debt, fortunately. Our home is paid for, our car too. We have a few thousand in guns, and a few thousand in silver.. double or triple that into food. I’m expanding my garden to double it’s size, since I got my first year of experience under my belt last summer, and did much better than I expected too. There are always holes that I’m finding in my preps, and always adding more food… speaking of.. two things on my list of wdydtptw that I forgot to add.. Augason farms is having a 40% off bucket sale this week, so I picked up a 300 serving, six gallon pail, bucket of freeze dried food, and one 60 serving entree bucket from wisefoods. I knew I was forgetting something..

        Anyway.. I have a fairly comprehensive library for when and if the grid goes down.. farming books, when there’s no doctor or dentist books, manuals, guides, herbs and edible weeds, etc.. and a handful of entertainment books, classics.. things I feel like preserving if things ever get really bad, and books start disappearing for one reason or another.

        We still live, we still have fun, do things, and buy things we don’t need.. but in the back of my mind, I am always thinking about being prepared, and worrying that something will happen that I HAVEN’T prepared for. I hope that I’m wrong. But anyway.. I don’t think I want to buy farmland. The average age of farmers worlwide might be edging 70, but here, in farm country, with a bean field, and two cornfields on either side of my backyard, and cows just down the block.. I know a lot of farmers, and a lot of them are my age, (35ish), so I think Indiana is already doing pretty okay with the farmers. One day, maybe I’ll be able to include myself in that grouping, though, of course, small time.

        I’m not sure what I’ll do with the last of my savings, but I definitely know that I don’t want to leave it in the bank..

        • MentalMatt says:

          Nice to see you post again, while the best case is to diversify, also think about buying some gold, I prefer American Eagles, I also watched the Glen Beck series about Fort Knox and such, and to tell you the truth, I believe him. I think most of the gold was sold 10 times over, I hope I’m wrong but I don’t think I am….

          • I’m gad I’m not the only one who watches and tends to agree with GB. I think he’s one of the few people in the media that YOU CAN trust these days. Yes he can be a little dramatic sometimes, but I think that’s only because he cares. And I appreciate that.

            But yeah, while we’re SUPPOSED to have a vault full of everyone’s cold hard gold, I think it’s lonnnng gone, and soon, those countries are going to know it, and we’re going to be screwed. :/

          • i wonder who got the money. if only we knew the complete truth.

        • JeffintheWest says:

          I hear you, about your cash. In the old days, I would have said if you have enough precious metals, then diversify the BANKS that you keep money in (a few thousand here, a few thousand there), that way if any one failed, you would still have access. But over the past 20 years, I’ve seen banking regulations collapse and banks become completely irresponsible and now I no longer trust them for anything. Heck if you have anything important in a Safety Deposit Box (that is, cash, or gold or anything like that), I’d consider getting it out. So what to do with that money.

          Well, you could always invest it in something tangible — a new 4WD car or something like that. But one thing that some Jewish people I know once told me (gosh, that sounds racist, just saying it that way, but let me tell you, if anyone knows how to survive tough times, it’s got to be Jewish people, given their history) is that you could consider buying diamonds. Nicely cut ones, of course. They retain their value really well (so if the S never does HTF, you can always re-sell them), they’re light, portable, easily concealable (get a bag of rock salt — but don’t let your husband use it to salt down the driveway!), and even after the SHTF retain value to some people. I know that probably sounds wildly unlikely as a survival item, but it might be an answer to your conundrum (though I have to tell you that I am a full supporter of the “buy land” school of thought here too — as my dad used to say; “they aren’t making any more land, so it should only get more valuable!” especially if it’s good land you can use to plant some fruit trees or use as pasture for a few animals…).

    • midnight1st says:

      Good to see you back!

      I can’t advise you what to do, but I also had a similar question because I would so hate to have all that I have scraped together just taken like they did in Cyprus and have been talking about doing here if need be. I would also not like it to have nothing left if nothing ever happens in that way. And, if we were to go into a depression rather than hyperinflation, a person could do a lot if she had some liquid cash.

      My advice to myself was to compromise. So, I took some out and paid off my house this month. Boy, does that ever feel good! It is something that I would have to do anyway and by doing so, I just got rid of that headache early. I am just going to pay myself the house payments for the length of time that I would have been paying them. I hope that I have the discipline to do it. I am still worried about the rest of my savings. At least I have protected some of it.

      If I were to find some good land at a really good price, I would consider investing more of my savings in that because it would always be something that I could sell later or leave to my kids if the shtf did not happen. If it does happen, it would give me somewhere else to go if need be. It is important though to have enough cash reserve to be able to pay the taxes for several years on any property that you own. That cash should be kept in a very safe place that is not controlled by anyone else but that a burglar could not get to or, for instance, not in a safe that a robber could see and make you open if they broke in on you.

      It’s a crap shoot anyway that you look at it. The best thing is to give it much consideration, think about what you can live with no matter what happens, and pray a lot if you are a praying person. I think that the Lord leads you in the way He knows you should go. You must watch for the opportunities He puts in front of you and recognize them as such. The correct answer for this is not the same for different people.

      Good luck with figuring it out. Be grateful that you have this problem. So many people are just hurting now.

      • i wonder if investing some of it in a stable foreign currency is a good idea. say canadian. or would theirs crash if ours did?
        you know how so many used to buy krugerrands.

    • Hi Schametti, good to see you still around!

      I like the idea of having a meaningful amount of cash, i.e. at least 6 months worth of expenses, put away. Not necessarily greenbacks under the mattress, but money in the bank.

      Explosive inflation will not hit so fast that you cannot adjust that as circumstances suggest.

      Cash is king in a melt down. It may not be so in TEOTWAWKI, but for anything less, it is. Cash gives us options to bug out to a hotel in the next county, or across the country, or even to another country. It also lets us pay the tax assessors, the income tax folks, the landlord, the car mechanic, the furnace repairman, and the grocer.

      Cash buys peace of mind because you KNOW you can pay unexpected bills. It is part of prepping.

      After setting aside 6 months worth of unavoidable expenses, then move on to other ways to sock it away.

      • axelsteve says:

        Personally I would not keep emergency cash in bank. when the shtf they will not let you get to it. They have done that before and they will do it again.

        • Don’t forget 5s and 10s. I have hundreds changed to 5s and 10s for those small exchanges.
          No, not gas or groceries or meds–those are taken care of.

        • Steve, I’m with you. I’ve been meticulously getting ALL of my money out of the bank every few months, (so I don’t get any annoying questions from the teller, or my money marketer person there). A few more transactions, and my accounts will be empty, save for monthly spending.. bill money, etc.

          I will keep several thousand in cash I guess. Have my few thousand in silver. My few thousand in guns and ammo, and my several thousand in food and supplies.

          And I’ve really been itching to buy a chicken coop, and buy a couple buckets of feed. So that when the shtf I can barter for chickens. So maybe I’ll put a little money into that. I’ve been nervous about it though. I don’t know nothin bout no chickens. Like, how do you keep them warm in the winter? I definitely won’t get any eggs from frozen chickens. 🙁

          • Scham, you should totally get a coop and some layer feed and some chickens. Get young chickens that just started laying and they are really self sufficent. They are so easy…constant clean water, access to food and a clean place to sleep is really all they need.
            Some of them have the funnest personalities, and they are so relaxing to watch after a long day. If they have a coop that doesnt allow a cold wind in.. you are set.

          • IndianaAli says:

            Hi Schmatti… I’m a Hoosier too.. we have had chickens for 3-4 years now… they will do fine even in our harsher winters like this year.. Just need a coop that is dry and keeps the wind out. We have Golden Comets which produce large brown eggs, very good layers. Fresh eggs are great and we sell our extras to others and helps pay for feed costs. Ours can’t really free range because of local dogs, etc but they do have a large outdoor pen attached to the coop. Other than cleaning out the coop occasionally they are not that difficult to maintain. Good luck.

          • Schametti says:

            My two girlfriends are begging me to get chickens, I’m still just dragging my feet. I have the room and the money for them, and they say they’d love to buy my spare eggs.. but I know that they’d limit me from any kind of traveling, (going to my Aunt’s for a week at a time, like I’m so apt to do, several times a year). I don’t want to have to worry about a chicken babysitter, lol. But I sooooooo want them. I have been thinking, although it sounds a little strange.. of buying the coop, and the feed, and waiting for things to get worse, before getting chickens, but I’m sure that would just be one more thing for my family to give me grief over..

      • Penrod. You sound like a Dave Ramsey man to me. 🙂 I approve and agree. And I definitely WILL have our emergency fund set aside, (for emergencies in a time when cash IS still Kind). But lately, I don’t know. I just worry that our dollar is headed for trouble, and we’ll be burning it for warmth one day, or something.

        I recently watched a National Geographic special called American blackout, and for a brutal ten days of chaos, money was worthless, and people were dying by death blows from stollen cans of peaches and tuna. It was bad. Now in MY opinion.. disasters like that aren’t over in ten days, to end peacefully for everyone when the power comes back on. I think it’ll be a lot longer and a lot darker than that. That’s why I’m trying to cover ALL my bases. Sometimes though, without a crystal ball.. it’s hard to know what bases there might be.

        • Hey, Schametti, Thanks. Sounds like you are on a good track: spread out your bets. Disasters come in different varieties, and the common, garden varieties are exactly that: the most common. Therefore they are the ones to prep for first—and a lot of that prepping works for the rarer, more intense types, so it isn’t an either/or.

          Some of the bets will fail, but the winners will help balance the losers.

      • it occurs to me that a passport would be good in case we do have to bug way out. t hey used to be 15$ but last i looked they were about 180$. we don’t have the money for them.
        what do you all think?

        • wasp,
          Considering that you can’t even travel from Detroit to Windsor anymore without one, I think they are a good idea. I haven’t checcked lately; but, about 3 years ago, we purchased one for my DD and it was $90.00.

          • I got a passport last Jan and it was $150.

          • JeffintheWest says:

            I bought my passport (and why, precisely, is a citizen required to pay so much for a basic document that doesn’t actually require much from the government — especially when you provide the picture?) for over $90.00 back in 2006 (meaning I have to buy ANOTHER one in 2016), but I did hear that the prices were supposed to double a few years ago. If they have, then it’s just outrageous, and is just another attempt to control where people can go.

          • I agree. A passport allows options for bugging out across national borders. They may be difficult or impossible to get, at least in time, in situations which militate toward bugging out right now.

            I think one used to be able to get one almost immediately, at extra cost, at a very small number of international airports, but you still had to have all the supporting documents with you. Not sure if that is still possible, and in any situation which caused you to skedaddle internationally, you probably could not get one.

        • I think a passport is a really important thing to have and I dont even like to leave the country. If I didnt have one, and couldnt afford one, I would start saving for one.

        • Schametti says:

          I’ve had a passport the last nine years or so, because my husband’s mother lives in Toronto Canada, and we have to fly up there every couple of years. Mine expires on my birthday, in February in 2016, but I’ll definitely be needing to renew it when it does. We use them often. I’m hoping to NOT have to bug out though. It would have to get REAL bad for me to want to leave the security of my home. I’m more of a bug-IN-er, lol.

    • Schametti,
      You stated, “And of course, there’s always my very real fear, that I’ll put all my savings into supplies.. and absolutely NOTHING will ever happen for me to ever need them, and then everyone who’s ever made fun of me for this lifestyle in the first place will get to do their pent up “I Told You So” speech”.
      I personally think you have this backwards. My real fear is that something WILL happen, and I’ll need to use them. This is insurance on your future, just like any insurance premium you pay. I assume you pay for homeowners insurance to protect against destruction of your house. Is your real fear that you’ll go to your grave without ever collecting? Do you really hope that the house will burn down so you can use the insurance? As for those who make fun of you, I personally would simply ignore them. In both your heart and your head you know what you are doing is the right thing; actually, the responsible thing, to be doing, and no matter what life choice you make, someone will disagree. I personally think that in life we must all agree to disagree on occasion, and get on with it.
      In the quote above you mention “this lifestyle”, and that is the real key. Do you prep out of fear, or has it become part of your lifestyle, your daily thoughts, and simply the way you do things, as it has become for me and many others. If it is simply fear, then you have some reevaluation to perform; however, if it is truly a lifestyle that gives you peace, security, and enjoyment, then basically just ignore the others.
      One thing you can do to mitigate your fears is to invest the money in shorter term preps, or self sufficiency preps. How far ahead are you on the standard food items you eat all of the time, such as canned and frozen goods? Properly stored, most canned goods can be eaten 2 years and beyond, and when purchasing them, just remember the store what you eat, eat what you store rule. This way, you’re likely to have less long term food going to waste if nothing happens. As for self sufficiency preps, I’m talking about something that gives back more than you put into it, in a perennial fashion. It could be things like solar or wind generation, chickens or bees, or perennial plants like rhubarb, berry bushes, or fruit trees. Use your imagination based on your own circumstances. As for those, “pent up “I Told You So” speeches”, they’re already thinking it and I suspect won’t have the guts to attend your funeral and add that to the eulogy.
      BTW, it sounds like most of your list of acquisitions hit the nail on the head. All things you will use for the most part in the near to medium term. Keep your chin up.
      I posted a link to a podcast on The Survival Podcast in another reply and I will once again reference Jack’s site, and its motto, “Helping You Lead A Better Life, If Times Get Tough, Or Even If They Don’t”

      • Ohio. I can definitely see your point. And I know that MOST people would agree with you. But I still don’t, lol. If I spent so much time and money and energy and money into a cause, I don’t want to think I wasted it all. It might be my lifestyle now, but only because I truly believe in my gut that I’m going to need these things. And maybe I’m wrong. But just as much as I hope I am.. I also hope I’m not. It’s just another one of those internal battles.. lol. I don’t want to just be ‘right’ ….I just don’t want to look a fool.

        But I’m definitely not afraid. I’ve been preparing two years almost now, and every day that goes by, and every item I add to my supplies, I feel a little more ready to take on whatever’s coming head on. That is a great feeling. But I still don’t want to sit on top of a pile of things for the rest of my years, and look back at the end of my life and think.. hmmph.. looks like I didn’t need ANY of this stuff. What a waste.

        • Schametti,
          If at the end of your life your house hasn’t burned down, will you think that those premiums were a waste, or just a responsible investment in your overall security.

          • Schametti says:

            We don’t have any choice, to be honest, Op. My husband has a trust, and he owns that trust, but the trust owns the house, (weird trust laws are weird), so we technically own the home, but indirectly. At ANY rate, it’s not optional for us to have home owner’s insurance, it’s mandatory, because in their eyes, the property is an investment. So we pay it because we’re forced to. Would I pay it, even if I didn’t have to? I don’t know. Most likely, we would. But since I don’t have to think about it, I don’t.

        • Schametti,
          As long as you are rotating your supplies then nothing is wasted. If a family or friend suddenly has a need then you will be able to help them without it being a strain on you. There are many types of shtf emergencies. You just never know what can happen in life. For the past few weeks we have been eating out of our stores. I have not bought tp since October and I still have enough for another couple of months. 🙂 I got started on this journey less than a year ago and I am so happy that I did.
          I agree that putting some of that money into improvements in your home would be of great value too and you can’t go wrong with buying land.

          • Schametti says:

            Hey Brenda, 🙂 I really want to buy a new fence for around our backyard, but we’ve been quoted at twelve grand. :/ And that would take half of my savings right there. I hate to do that though. I don’t know why fencing has to be sooo bloody expensive, lol. So we’ve been doing 6-8 new fence panels each summer, (well, so far six panels in ONE summer, LAST summer… but hopefully we’ll get up another eight this summer. One section is starting to lean pretty badly). The people who built the fence here when we moved here were clearly amateurs who didn’t know what they were doing, because it’s a hot mess, with the wrong sized nails sticking through just waiting to impale you. I hate it.. lol.

        • You are going to need these things. God put the preparedness bug in your ear, because you will need these things. I truly believe that.

          • Schametti says:

            Patti, I really believe that too. It’s been almost two years now, but I got such a real and urgent sense in my gut that prepping is what I needed to be doing, and I didn’t know why, and I didn’t know what exactly was coming, but I knew it was something, and that I needed to be prepared, so I started down this road to a new way of life, and while I often have uneasy thoughts of doubt, I keep on trudging on.. and every night I pray to God that he helps steer me to the supplies, the amount of supplies, the information, and the skills that I need to survive and thrive in a very bad situation, and I feel like he’s helping me along with everything. I just have those nasty, niggling doubts in the back on my over-active brain that makes me worry that I’ve made a mistake, or that I’ve just made that urge up. But I’m definitely not risking not being prepared, so I just keep on keeping on.

        • so, i was thinkin' says:

          As far as canned goods go, you dont have to worry about waste. Washington State University did a study and food that canned good 47 years past date were stiill safe and had minimal nutrient loss. Dont think I would want to wait that long, but it’s nice to know.

          • Schametti says:

            That’s pretty cool. I always fret about my canned things going bad, even though they’re all only maybe a year old, or less, since I’ve only been prepping for just shy of two years, and started with bigger things like a storm shelter.. Anyway.. I don’t want to rotate and toss them out as early as the dates on the can say I should, so I’m just keeping everything, and we’ll see what happens, and when.. and how the food looks when we open it, :/

    • Welcome back, Schametti!

      Are there any improvements you might want to make to your house that could make it more energy efficient (like adding insulation, or solar screens on windows) or improve your storage capability (like adding shelves in closets or putting beds on risers to get more storage space underneath)? Many security improvements (like kick-stoppers on doors or window locks) can be made with a little bit of cash and elbow grease, too.

      • That’s actually a really excellent idea Lantana. One of my growning fears of late, is that I’ll spend so much time, energy and MONEY to get all my preps in a row, and someone will just come and take it away from me. I mean, in a doomsday situation, if a random looter comes, I aim to shoot them, and leave a pile of bodies on my sidewalk to deter others. But what happens in a Marshal Law situation, when and or if the government comes to take my things? I don’t have a plan for that. Would I have the courage to shoot soldiers, even if they have their loyalty misplaced? How many of them might there be? My husband and I would just die trying to protect our things, and for what then? It’s definitely something that’s been weighing heavy on my mind. 🙁

        I have considered looking into concealment for my prepping closet, maybe a useable shelf unit over the door access to the walk in closer that I keep my preps in.

        You know, I would LOVE to put my savings into a bunker.. (A couple beds to hide away in.. and most especially, a nice underground storehouse to keep all these buckets of freeze dried foods I’ve acquired). But nice bunkers are sooo expensive, and I hesitate to become one of ‘those’ people, lol. It’s bad enough that people already think I’m batshit.

        I definitely want to look into the costs of getting a new door though. Maybe something steel, without the ‘pretty’ decorative glass panels in it. :/ That will likely be expensive. And I DO want one of those door jam blockers to make it harder to get in the front door at least.

    • Schametti,

      First of all – don’t you ever disappear again – you scared a bunch of us! Now – lecture done.

      I am so sorry you hurt your back, and glad you are on the road to recovery. I will pray for your continued recovery.

      I agree with you (although my DH wants to purchase silver) I’d put the money into supplies that will last a long time. What if nothing happens??? You will eat good in your retirement with food from today’s prices. Talk about a savings plan!

      Once you are a seasoned prepper – you will STILL find holes in your preps – get used to it. Keep looking for those holes and filling them.

      I used to buy packs of seeds, storing them in freezer baggies and storing them in the freezer. Then someone from this site said you’d need a 2-1/2 acre garden to grow enough food to feed a family of 4 for a year (and the canning jars to can that stuff). What an eye opener that was. Now I buy my seeds in the 1/4 – 1/2 lb increments.

      I also quit buying those survival seed package deals – lots of lettuce, little of the type of stuff I would can for winter.

      • Haha.. I try not to disappear for more than three weeks at a time. But yes ma’am, Michelle, I will promise to check in oftener than that. :):)

        It’s a little scary to think that it takes THAT much food to feed such a small family. It means my tiny garden, (even doubling it in size this summer), it’s still barely going to feed us, and our friend, who still swears she’s showing up here if things ever go south. (I mostly don’t have a problem with this, but she’s carting her three cats, and two giant dogs here with her). Oi, lol.

        Right now, I think I have about five grand in silver coins. I don’t have any gold yet. It’s sooo expensive. I don’t have THAT much savings, (since I’ve already put a nice chunk of it into guns, precious metals, ammo and more ammo.. food food food!! and a lot of supplies, heaters, cookers, fuel sources, medicines, etc etc etc). I’ve probably put ten grand into food and supplies, along with the five in silver. I’m not gonna lie, it makes me feel a little woozy sometimes, because for the longest time.. I thought cold hard cash safely tucked away in a bank account meant security. But now.. my entire thought process and belief system has changed.

      • Rob in Ontario says:

        sorry I hit report– I would suggest getting a older truck as a BOV- something that’s pre-electroic in

        • Schametti says:

          I don’t think I’m the kind of person brave enough to bug out. I’m not in California, and should be safe from fires. I’m not in Florida or along a coast, so I should be safe from Hurricanes. Earthquake is possible, but not likely. And tornados are a very real threat, but we have a tiny, but sturdy storm shelter underground out in our back yard, (as that was my very first prep, two summers ago). But I’m much more likely to hunker down, and hide, or die. There are just too many unknowns out there, in a bad situation, so I’m staying here, in my house, until someone forces me to leave it, somehow or another.

      • IndianaAli says:

        I definitely agree.. approaching “retirement” in 10 years or so.. if there will be such a thing.. I look at my supply of long term food storage as something I will use when I am older if nothing happens. I’ve taken care of elderly and I know that as the years go by many times they hate to prepare meals… this way just add hot water and your meal is ready. Will be a great convenience in my older years if nothing else.

        • Schametti says:

          That’s a really good point Ali. And a new way to look at not wasting it, if nothing else.. we can use it toward the end of our life, when my husband no longer feels like treking to walmart every other day like he does now, lol..

    • “That if things really get bad enough, no one is going to be trading for silver, because it just won’t matter, and that everyone will only be focused on food and goods, and supplies for bartering to survive.”

      It depends on how exactly SHTF. For a real life look at both scenarios, look at selco’s story at http://www.shtfschool.com and ferfal at http://ferfal.blogspot.com/ (read the book based on his blog.)

      Selco lived in a city during wartime and social collapse. He makes the “stuff is better than money” argument. He also makes some observations about the value of trade items over time. Candles and lights were very valuable in the beginning because everyone tried to continue with their lives unchanged (and kept lights on everywhere) but later candles were less valuable because people adjusted to the life, and only had light in one room at a time.

      Ferfal lived thru the Argentinian currency collapse and makes the argument that SHTF is happening NOW. He says that in his type of SHTF, you will still need to gat to work, still need to buy food, and that daily life continues (no madmax societal collapse.) He makes the point that gold chains make an excellent store of value and are useful as currency because “you can sell them an inch at a time.” That alone opened my mind.

      Both of them continue to prep, and seem to favor lots of stuff, but both include “money” in their preps.


      • Schametti says:

        I don’t know, (I’m not disagreeing with Ferfal), but now.. with the daily work grind, grocery getting, and a bad but relatively ‘normal’ currency situation.. now doesn’t feel like a shtf scenario. At least not in my mind. If daily life continues as normal, it’s more a calm before the storm scenario maybe. To me, if something SERIOUS doesn’t happen.. the grid goes down, the economy collapses, marshal law goes into affect.. grocery stores are empty.. looters are looting from the farm to the big cities…. if none of these things are happening, then my preps remain untouched.

  43. Grannytraveler says:

    I have been really broke since the holidays so not much buying going on. I have been using up a lot of my beans on soup. Figured it was time to rotate them. Too bad it is not really soup weather here- temp’s in the upper 80’s. The soup tastes great anyway. Stocked up on some more fish antibiotics. The cephalexin looked totally different from what I usually get. Checked it out online and it shows that it is just from a different manufacturer. Good for 2 years out.

    We’ve had a couple of good shakers here so I was motivated to rotate the water that I have stored under the bathroom sinks. Trying to get my daughter more on board with prepping but her husband is resistant to the idea. She did go out and buy the iostat tablets after she read the Threat Alert I sent her about the Fukushima clean up.

    Hope everyone is staying well. I have had a nasty head cold this past week aggravated by the smoke from the fires. Thankfully it is not the flu but it is still a downer. Keeping my eye on the H5N1 virus reports. That is the one that really scares me.

    • Grannytraveler,

      If it makes you feel any better, H5N1 has quite a bit of evolving to do before it can easily spread from person to person. And typically when a flu virus mutates to become more contagious, it looses a good deal of its lethality.

    • Elderberry for flu.

  44. midnight1st says:

    This week I bought a kerosene stove as a back up heater as well as some kerosene. I also ordered a floor pad for my wood stove that I have been promised will be put in within two weeks. I have been waiting for two years for that to happen. Added some to short term food.

    I dug up yet more grass for more herb beds to be planted in the spring. Spent time covering and uncovering my winter garden due to cold nights. I just love winter gardens because I don’t have to share the bounty with the bugs.

    Worked on clearing and reorganizing the attic. Had the roof fixed where the wind was blowing rain under some of the flashing. Finally got all the Christmas decor back in the attic after the roofer left. Cleaned and reorganized the shed. Now dh can’t find anything!

    Got in a battery charger that is supposed to recharge non-rechargeable batteries. Hope this works!

    Developed a power point presentation on heirloom plants that I am giving to a group this week.

    Have a good week, Pack!

    • Your battery charger for non-rechargeable batteries reminded me of the episode of Gilligan’s Island where the professor devised a way to recharge batteries.

      • JeffintheWest says:

        Did you see where the Professor just recently died? Turns out he was a crewman on a B-25 in the Pacific, flew 44 combat missions and was awarded the Purple Heart. Who knew? Like most of his compatriots, he apparently never talked about it. Another good man gone.

        • I did see that about his death and did not know that about his life. Interesting person. He and Mary Ann were not in the song when the show first aired.

    • midnight, I love my battery charger so much(now I don’t throw away good batteries with the bad, because the charger tells me if they are good or bad!!), I ordered a solar battery charger for when TSHTF.

      • midnight1st says:

        I had already gotten a solar charger, and it works, but I think that it is just for rechargeable batteries. What I like about this one is that it charges alkaline batteries also. This way I can get all my friends and family to donate their dead batteries to me.

        I tried it today, and it seems to work, but it is slower than I expected.

  45. cynthia rafler says:

    I commented about my week’s prep a few posts back, but have been reading all of yours for ideas and hoping that I can be of some support to a few.
    I did take notice that a lot of us are recovering from that SHTF or N1H1 and some of us have chronic health problems. I think failing health is the worst SHTF scenario, even more than our collapsing economy, or daily disaster (nature or man made) you hear about in the news happening everywhere. In my case in my household of 5 there are 3 of us with chronic health problems. With other SHTF scenarios at least you might have the strenght to survive or escape it. But when your health is weak you feel helpless. I do my best to prep on a limited income and know my family will probably just have to shelter in place, as a stroke victim will find it very hard to bug-out. Daily I do everything I can get healthier and strength training. That’s all you can do is fight each crisis the best you can as it comes and try to enjoy what is life now.
    I also notice that a lot of people prep in bulk from Costco and Sams, I don’t because I can’t afford the membership and haven’t found a friend to share the membership with. “Smart and Final” stores are in many locations and are a bulk/box store that is free to shop at. I find good deals there always. I also like $1.00 type stores for non perishables and medical items, my personal favorite is .99 cent store. I look online for deals for things that will last and never pay full price. Prepping of any sort, takes a lot of commitment and it very helpful to find blogs like this where you can find hints to making prepping easier.

    • Hi Cynthia, I agree: health problems are hard to deal with. My Dad suffered from prostate cancer for several years while living in Florida, and they bugged out to another county a couple times when hurricanes were approaching. They managed, but it was hard. They were lucky in that the storm surges and big winds missed their home, but just moving him was hard. I empathize with you.

      However, for almost all problems, staying home is the best thing you can do. Unless you are subject to wild fires or in a flood zone, the odds are you will be fine where you are. Just do what you can, as you can. Chances are that you will be better off than the neighbors.

      Just keep chipping away at whatever preps seem proper to you in your situation. You will almost certainly be OK.

    • Penrod is right. Sheltering in place is the first and best option unless it puts your life in danger (fire/floods, etc.). You’re doing good!

  46. Hi y’all, this week I was broke but still managed to sign up for an Appleseed instructor boot camp (just a long seminar for instructors – no PT!) that will be in Feb., there will also be a KD shoot the day before that will be free for instructors, and we’ll be allowed to “camp” indoors. Woot! I’m hoping to qualify with my centerfire rifle over iron sights this time.

    Likewise I’ll be going to a 2 day pistol self defense class in March, but I have to pay for that one.

    I scored another nice pair of boots at the thrift. Very warm and kind of like white sneaker boots with fake fur and Thinsulate. They were $6. Also they’re a size or two too big, which means I can wear wool socks with them and maybe also my arch support inserts. They’ll be great for when I have to stand around outdoors all day like at Appleseed. I also got a nice pouch that’s big enough to stick a poncho and a bunch of granola bars into, and a small bag of “instant light” briquettes where you light the bag itself, which I stuffed into the trunk of my car as a bug-out thing.

    I worked extra today for one of my jobs. It feels like a Friday to me instead of a Saturday.

    Also got some granola bars, but then I ate half of them. (burrrp)

    While decluttering my papers the other night I found some topo maps of the local area I ordered from the US Geological Survey the other year, and the package was still unopened. So I opened it and discovered I’d ordered a water table map as well. It was interesting to look at, the watery areas were in red!

    I guess that’s it. Oh, I also found a neat site publicintelligence.net where people upload government documents. There’s all sorts of stuff there.

    • Where/how did you order the water table map? I would love to get one before we look for our new property.

      • worrisome says:

        Water table map, known fault map, a trip by the local LE to see where they roll often, areas that need clearing in case of a forest fire with more than one road in and out in case one is blocked by fire…………think the Oakland fire and trapped residents. Water resources and water rights on any property you buy. Also mineral rights on any property you buy. How close you are to telephone lines and electrical lines if you are building….or you may be totally shocked by the cost of bringing that stuff in… Well that is a start of things to concern yourself with when you buy….:)

        • Worrisome,

          I always get a kick out of the State of Kommiefornia saying they are going to place meters on our wells – let them try – I own the water and mineral rights to my property – I verified before I signed.

          I do know the cost to bring in power and phone lines. My mom lives off grid – because bringing them in the mile into her property was astronomical. She does have phone though, she ran phone lines from the pole they set up for her with her phone number to it, along the ground in to her property.

      • The US Geological Survey website.

  47. Beans-N-Bullets says:

    looks like we are in for a serious drought in Calif., #1 food producer. Temps hitting almost 70 in some spots in Jan. Gov. Brown asking for voluntary 20% reduction in water use, fire season has stared in Jan, we need rain and we need it now. Food prices will go up so expand your garden, rain water catchment. The person asking about were to put your $$$ YES farm land but Calif. has gotten crowded and the water tables has been abused so much that land has dropped several feet, water canals are no longer level because of this. Guess I need to see how far out the farmers almanacs forecast goes.
    I stock up at Costco, Wal-Mart, Dent-a can stores, grocery outlets, coupons. I also travel a lot and don’t mind having a blue tarp covering tons of groceries in the back of my truck : ) makes me happy. Canning, dehydrating. Best of luck to all, stock up

  48. Millie in KY says:

    I tried to finish up some projects this past month. I hit a deer with the car so that meant going 30 miles for a rental car and then turning it back in after a few days due to brake issues and the fact that the license sticker was expired. So three trips total (2 necessitating another driver with me) to take care of that. Of course the adjuster took over a week to take a look at the car, then we were at Christmas. I loved the newer Toyota they let me use but sheesh, this still took a long time. Then the car insurance was also due. So basically no money for preps.
    So I have tried to some reading on trees and also on some natural healing. I am most interested in acid reflux since I have recently decided that this is something I am developing. I would love to hear if there are any natural remedies that I can use.
    About the only thing I have acquired in the past couple of weeks is that there was still merchandise available on the sale shelf at Wal Mart so I took advantage and cleaned up about 28 taper candles for 11 cents each.
    Hopefully there will be a little more money available in February….

    • Lauri no e says:


      If you find out any natural healing please let me know. My husband and his brother have acid reflex and take prescriptions daily for this. I also have Previcad (I know I spelled this wrong) stocked up because it use to be a prescription but now it is over the counter.

      • Omeprazole is good for me. It is supposed to be for long term use, but when I get acid reflux, one Omeprazole almost always does the trick. I just looked and you can get them from CostCo or Amazon. It is really good stuff for me.

      • Millie and Lauri and all acid reflux sufferers – the DH has given up 99% of the gluten in his diet and his acid reflux is about 99.999% gone. He used to take a Zantac every night and eat Tums like candy. I don’t buy either near as much anymore.

        • I went gluten free and the great side effect was the heartburn/acid reflux was gone, so was the issues on the other end. It is a hard thing to adjust to, but once you get the hang of of it not to bad, and lost about 25 lbs. too.

    • Dee from KY says:

      Hi Millie, I too am from KY and would like to meet you via of email and talk to you about your prepping. I am desperate to find another lady who preps. Would you be willing to converse with me? I live in central KY. 😉

    • Dee in KY says:

      Hi Millie, I live in central KY also and I am desperate to find another lady to converse with about prepping. Would you be willing to talk with me via email? 😉

    • Millie,
      Ginger is good for controlling reflux. It works especially well if you have a fresh root, slice off a piece and make tea with it. Do this daily.

      • Millie in KY says:

        Oh, ginger! Of course! I take this for nausea. I have some in the cabinet and will try it right now! I have an iron gut and I am sure this is a very mild case but it’s driving me nuts. and gluten will be the next thing I look at, and have heard of this. thank you everyone! I will go get some preveaid (spelling) if nothing else works….I have been not eating after 3:00 pm but dang, I sometimes want something in the evening. I find even if I have some apple juice it can backflow….

    • My dh has these symptoms from time to time. I don’t know anything that works as well as Prilosec. The underlying cause that exacerbates acid reflux is obesity. For a long term solution, the most promising way to treat acid reflux is to change one’s diet and loose weight. For daily treatment, put a teaspoon Bragg’s apple cider vinegar in glass of warm water. Mint tea after dinner helps as well.

      • Schatzie Ohio says:

        In our case, the husband is by far not obese but does have a hiatial (sp?) hernia. The only thing that really worked for him was Protonix which the insurance company won’t pay for.

      • Lauri no e says:

        My husband is not over weight needs to put on 10 or 15 pounds but sweets like chocolate can make him sick if he eats to much.

        I think my husband said sometimes you need to give the medication a couple of weeks to work if you have not taken any in for any length of time.

        • I’m serious about the gluten. The DH used to have problems from chocolate because it relaxes the valve and makes it easier for the acid to escape from the stomach. After he quit eating so much bread, he started being able to eat chocolate after dinner again. He is also over 300 pounds and rarely has acid reflux anymore.

      • I had acid reflux for years. I was not overweight.
        I started using Hemp Oil and never have acid reflux attacks any longer.

      • I fear I may have offended some of you by mentioning the connection between obesity and acid reflux. I apologize. One day I will learn tact.

        • Lauri no e says:

          Bam Bam,

          You didn’t offend me at all. I was just trying to say for my husband and his brother they are not over weight. I think some of it is genetics because also his mother and my husband and his 3 brothers also have kidney stones.

    • Apple cider vinegar (with the mother, like Braggs) helps alot with acid reflux. Aloe juice seems to treat the discomfort. We have also had some improvement with drinking home brewed Kombucha (fermented tea), it actually helps your entire digestive system work more efficiently. I got my scoby from a nice lady on craigslist for free.
      Cutting back caffeine, especially cutting out soda can make a good difference, also. We found the biggest improvement came when we learned we had Celiac and had to give up gluten.
      The only person in my family who still has acid reflux is the one person who never gave up bread. However, drinking Kombucha and ACV has made a huge difference in the severity of his reflux.
      Good luck!

    • S'wt Tater says:

      DLG for acid reflux.

  49. Lauri no e says:

    Our main prep has been helping our dd who lost her job. Can’t go into detail but we are glad she is out of this dangerous situation. So prayers are needed for a new job. My husband said my daughter tries so hard that he doesn’t mind helping her at all. This is his step daughter. I have raised my dd to be responsible and she has always paid us back every penny she has every borrowed but I told her not to worry about this time and let’s go forward. So we are not prepping at this time because the expense of 2 households.

    I did buy a few things before all this.

    tp 40 rolls ( I have being buying a lot of this lately with coupons)
    11 cases of water, 2 jars peanut butter, case of chicken noodle, case of can milk, 3 cases of paper towels, case of Gatorade, 3 cans of Lysol, and a bottle of Emertrol.

    My husband sent my daughter a song by text the song by Rascal Fratts
    I think it is Mayberry my wish for you, something like that the one when one door closes another one opens. I thought that was very kind of him and made me cry. She tries so hard and she was in a Mean Girl situation and very dangerous situation that I can’t tell.

    Have a good week.

    • axelsteve says:

      Lauri no e. I saw Rascal flats twice. I used to work security at a concert venue in N California and they played one weekend. So I got to hear them 2 nights in a row. They put on a good show.

  50. Babycatcher says:

    We helped my grown daughter move this weekend. She lost her job back in the summer, and works a small part time job, but it wasn’t enough to pay for the apt she had. So she’s with us, which is ok, cuz we could use help getting the yard, garden, and home improvements finished. She’s also one of the ones we have been prepping for, so her help comes in handy. Bought some big box store food, need more shelving. Today is my hubby’s and my 11th anniversary, and he surprised me with a three tier saddle rack from Tractor Supply! I have an English and two western saddles, and a single homemade rack would have been just as expensive, but bulkier, so he got this one. I am thrilled and can’t wait to put it together after church in the morning! Still cold here, and ground is soggy, so haven’t done much, but the chickens are starting to lay again! Thanks to BamBam, got the elderberries and vodka in the house, now gotta make the tinctures! Hugs to the Pack, prayers for those of you sick or recovering, and stay warm!

  51. Dee Slade says:

    Hi, I live in central Kentucky and I just recently (last 3 months) found your website and I have gleemed so much information from it and really appreciate all you do. I started prepping about a year ago and I cannot find another woman anywhere who even comes close to being a prepper. I try to feel people out about the Dooms day prepper show just to see a reaction but just mentioning storing water & food most of my friends say they go to walmart/Kroger if needed. I go thru the whole thing about what if there wasn’t a walmart/Kroger open and then they just look at me as say “yeah that makes sense to store it” and then they change the subject, even my family members. I don’t obsess about it at all and try to do something each day no matter how small to prepare. You had a lady response to your “What did you do today to prepare” column named “Millie in KY” back in July 2013. I know this is a long shot but does she have an email address where I could converse with her on what she does. I am so desperate to find another lady to talk with. I once mentioned to one of my neighbor’s last year in my subdivision, she was walking and saw our extra storage of cases of water in our garage when my husband had door open and she mentioned it next time I saw her, (we have since covered it up) and I told her we always try to be prepared for any kind of a disaster. I recommended she might want to do the same and she laughed and said she knew where to come if she needed something. I told her “No” she had been warned (ln a light manner) go to walmart/Kroger and start her own preparing. Please help me get in contact with more ladies/men in my area if possible. Thank you so much!

  52. Bought my first AR-15, a Colt LE9620 and 200 rounds of ammo.

  53. Carolina Blue says:

    After six full weeks of retirement, my To-Do list keeps getting longer, not shorter. We built a new compost pile and got it started. Got a good tip from a friend – we use a paper shredder to chop up pretty much anything that has our address on it and have used the shredded paper for fire-starter and packing material, but my friend suggested using it as a component in our compost, should work fine. Planned out the expansion of our raised bed garden and deer fence (which is absolutely needed where we live; seems they love lettuce and peppers).

    We adopted a golden retriever from the local Rescue group, got her home on Wednesday evening and she’s settling in; still a bit anxious from the change, but she’s really adjusting well. She’ll be a great watchdog with keen hearing and a sharp eye.

    Getting more involved with our church now that we have the time and attended a rally for a true patriot who’s running for the Senate – we’ll be volunteering some of our time to his campaign.

    Be safe and be prepared…


    • riverrider says:

      blue, i feel ya. three years ago when i retired i thought i’d catch up on the honey-do list and get another job on a few months. my list is still just as long and i work at least part of every day but no luck catching up.

    • axelsteve says:

      We have a dog visiting with us. She is a black and white pit terier.I think that she is a staffiemight have a bit something else in her. She is sweet and very young we think that she is about a year old. A friend of ours rescued him at walmart it was tied up over 8 hours. We posted on lakes list about her but no response.He is going to take her to the spca monday morning.

    • axelsteve says:

      I took the truck on a test drive and it seemed to like the new grease.I plan on lubbing up the rest of the driveline when I can.I wish that I had a lathe so I could fab up a adapter for my grease gun so I could lube up the non zerk u joints. I just may get a drill bit and tap and put the zerk on a cap.I had to remind myself to get metric tools out since the truck is a 96.

  54. I forgot. I also ordered and received MD’s 31 Days to Survival. It came yesterday.

    Also, some one here said many canned goods from the store can last 1 or 2 years after expiration date. Last week I found in my pantry a can of pear halves BB March 2012. I opened it and it smelled good and tasted good too. So now I have first hand evidence of the truth of it.

    • Michigan Mike,

      Let me know what you think about my book – it was written to make prepping as easy (and cheap) as possible.

    • DUH— Those canned goods will last years. I have canned goods(yes, pears too) stored in 2008..people, stop throwing away those cans. The expiration date is for the manufacturer and grocery, not you!!!!

      Read!!! Research!!!

  55. Good morning my sweet family,

    Since we are a bit low on space at the new house, I’ve been asked by my sweetie not to do too much prepping except for herbs – so I called Mountain Rose herbs and made an order, that will come in next week. We are saving money to buy our own place out here, so prep money will be saved to add to our down payment.

    I also applied for my CCW permit, really nice people at the Sheriff’s office out here.

    We went Friday night and got the last of our stuff at the old house, and while DH took a load to the dump, then loaded the last of the stuff, I cleaned up the house. Of the 29 hours from Friday 4:30, we spent 14 of those in the car. Sure glad that is done at last.

    Got a phone call from my HR manager, my job has been eliminated as part of the 30,000 jobs being cut at HP. I have one more week to find another without a break, then 60 days for preferential hiring. I’ve been pretty spoiled working from home, so am hoping that can continue.

    Please add me to your prayer list, as we still have 2 mortgages and now rent on this house as well. We could use to sell DH’s house and for me to find a job – and preferably within this next week.

    • Lauri no e says:


      I will be praying for your job search and all you other needs.

    • Nebraska Woman says:

      Of course we will pray for you. You’re a special lady. Sorry about the job and the mortgages, but things will all work out in the end.
      Take care!

    • worrisome says:

      So sorry to hear Michelle. AND the economy is getting soooo much better according to the annointed one………..

      Good luck on the job hunt……….I have added you to the prayer list………….which is getting mighty long these days!

    • Michelle,
      So sorry to hear your work is ending, I will definitely pray about that situation. You are so wise and bright and kind…I bet you find something quickly. God will provide for your needs one way or another, I do know that. Take care, friend.

    • JeffintheWest says:

      Will pray hard for you guys! Keep up your spirits and good things will happen!

    • Michele, more prayers coming your way.

  56. Nothing really acquired this week except knowledge. I apprecieate everyone who shared about pressure canners and vacuum sealers. My husband is still recovering from pneumonia, so caring for him this week has been important. Kids have completed the first week of the new semester. Daughter has already been swamped with homework. We did manage to install in the attic an anttenea we purchased right after Christmas. We receive. Couple of local channels through it, so we can at least keep up wiith local news. Trying to plan this year’s garden, but every time I look at those seed catalogs, my wants are bigger than my space.

    Prayer for our pack.

    • Sorry for a second post so soon. I forgot that I was going to ask a question for my fellow southerns. I am having trouble deciding upon tomato varieties to grow. The only type of tomato I have successfulky grown in the past few years is Juliet grape. It is a hybrid. I would like to find a relible Roma type and a slicing/canning type. When I begin reading descriptions in seed catalogs, I get overwhelmed because there are so many tomato choices. What have you grown successfully? And please say if it was in the ground or a container

  57. Oh, and just for fun…

    Apparently Tim Donnelly is going to be running against Moonbeam for Governor of California. He has a very good commercial I think you will all love – one of the best/funniest commercials I’ve seen in a long time – and this is a commercial for Governor! Based on the commercial alone, I’d vote for him if I hadn’t escaped the nanny state about a year ago.

    Anyway – here it is:


    • JeffintheWest says:

      I’m going to vote for him. Hell, I’d vote for just about anyone to get Moonbeam out of office before he destroys what little remains of California.

  58. Well once again prepping this week has been skinny. I did manage to add to our water storage and acquired 5 more 5 gallon buckets and lids. One of these are going for the laundry detergent I plan on making soon. Trying to stay positive and do a lot of reading as we can’t spend much money right now. I am finally to chapter 26 in 31 Days to Survival. I am hoping to wrap it up this week. So thankful that it is written in a way that doesn’t make one think they are in adequate for not spending a bunch of money. It has made me feel like I have some realistic goals. Thank you again M D.

  59. Stocked up on isopropyl alcohol, anti-diarrheal pills, and antihistamine pills. I bought a lot of dog food, but I go through so much of it I can’t get much ahead. All four of my dogs have special places in my heart and there is no way I can part with any of them (Two are very, very old.), so I guess there is no help for it, I’ll just keep buying dog food and cutting back on other stuff. The dogs are family and family comes first. LOL

  60. k. fields says:

    Still no rain here in Northern CA, so I’m mostly just enjoying the beautiful sunny weather – still mid 70’s during the day.
    Livestock all doing fine and pastures are still holding their own for now due to the condensation from the sea fog that rolls in most afternoons – warm daytime air hitting cold ocean – but starting any new crops right now is still too chancy.
    Have been going through the irrigation lines to be sure everything is working correctly in case they are needed early this year and watching the well levels daily – no significant drop yet – though there are reports of businesses down the coast now having to purchase water.
    Hope everyone enjoys their holiday tomorrow.

  61. Kermit5575 says:

    Sitting around doing shots of Bam Bam’s Elderberry Tincture !!! Did I say shots?? I mean… Tables spoons. I kept yelling corpsman until The DW cut me off, said I wasn’t that sick. What kind of woman would cut off a mans meds in the middle of his recovery?? No wonder she has to make so much. This stuff really works (and taste Great), have been taking it for three days and am feeling better already. Had to start making another bottle, hope this one last until the new one is ready.

    Not much prep wise, looking to see which trees need to come down and where to put more hugelkultur beds. Got two more apple trees, two more plums, a pomegranate and a male and female Kiwi. need to get the ground ready for the trees.

    started two 1/2 gal jars of apple and one 1/2 gal jar of vinegar, will let you know in two weeks how they turn out.

    • Nebraska Woman says:

      What kind of woman would cut off a man’s meds in the middle of recovery? Well, the same kind of man who took away my laughing gas during labor because he was so embarrassed that I was so loud!!

    • OMG, Kermit. That is funny. My dh and I don’t drink but we’ve been hitting the elderberry tincture pretty hard. I’ve started making it in 1/2 gallon jars.

      • Hunker-Down says:

        My grandma had a habit like that. She said her home made ‘medicine’ helped her ‘sore chest’. When she couldn’t hit herself in the rump with either hand, she usually said her lungs felt better. Maybe that’s why all her kids were alcoholics. But, she ran a tight house; grandpa has to keep his ‘medicine’ in the barn.

  62. Question for you master herbalist ladies…Can I add star anise to my elderberry tincture for a little extra puch? I am going to make the syrup as well, but I got a lot of anise and I was thinking….

    • Yes. Or you could make a separate pint jar of the star anise tincture. And mix the two when you use them. When I make cough syrup I add elderberries, star anise, cinnamon stick and clove. I am going to start adding licorice root.

  63. huckleberrylady says:

    Hi everyone!
    This week I was able to stock up on 2 30 roll packs of toilet paper. That gives us a total of 370 rolls. I also bought 5 bars of Fels Naptha for making laundry soap, 2 replacement wicks for my oil lamps, a 2 lbs of lentils and 2 large boxes of feminine hygiene items.

    I enjoy reading everyone’s post on here! Have a great week everyone!

  64. Heads Up: Drawing Salve

    My dh had painful splinters in his foot last night. He stepped on something. I made up some Amish black drawing slave and the stuff worked like a charm. Here’s the recipe.


  65. Rob Crawford says:

    My preps this last week consist of a 1969 set of Encyclopedia Britannica, from e-Bay. Once I have a BOL, it’ll take up residence there along with the collected works of Shakespeare and Mark Twain. For now it’s going into my “home office”.

    • Rob in Ontario says:

      nice books to have I picked up free 1/2 a set of brittannica’s, from 1910 great reading in there

    • Rob:

      If you can find it, look for Annals of America by Britannica. These are copies of the founding documents. I got my set off ebay for about $100. I just saw a complete set at a used book store in OKC for $15! These are definitely in our BOL library.

  66. It is good to have quality reading material.

  67. Just upgraded my Membership in USCCA, ( Concealed Carry insurance) to Planum Plus and got my wife a silver membership.
    Bought 4 cases of canned food for the larder.
    Started the Genorator and let it run half an hour to charge the battery, we are suposed to get snow tonighty so once i get off work make sure the tractor with snow plow will start.

  68. Wow, just figured out a major reuse… Heh, heh, I’m good, but I’m guessing someone else has already figured this out before…
    Was at Hobby Lobby in the embroidry section and came upon the sheets of plastic needlepoint canvas. Big old bell stared to bong in my head along with the incandescent bulb… These would be good for lining my dehydrator trays for all that stuff that falls thru once it dries! Omg it’s the perfect size to fit the trays, I even think that rice won’t even fall thru them!!!
    Had a package of clearance baby spinach that I tossed in there, not a leaf budged.
    The 5 sheets I got were on 40% off on sale so they were about 38 cents apiece.
    Yep, I am buffing my nails on the sweatshirt in smug self satisfaction.

  69. Got back from the doctor’s office and received the verdict. Pathology came back negative so will only have to be screened every 3 months for the next 3 years and then every 6 months for 2 – after which it will be once a year. Can’t return to work for another 4 weeks but there are things I can do workwise and at home to be better prepared. So am working on deep cleaning by sitting on a chair or the floor and bringing stuff to me – putting Penny Pincher’s ideas to work along with some of my own. Lots of ways to prep when one has little money or strength.

  70. so, i was thinkin' says:

    Probably the last post on this thread… have been under the weather.

    This week I bought gardening seeds at 40 – 60% off for my survival seed stash. Added a new area to stockpile dry goods and bought a nice supply of pasta and canned goods. Added more 9 mm to our supply. Went through all our books, DVDs, and CDs so that I can trade at Half Price books for more relevant skill related books. Our chicks finally hatched over the weekend- we ended up with 28. Not looking forward to it, but it is time to start thinning out our older flock.

    Hope everyone has a really good week. I have enjoyed all the posts.

  71. nope, you’re not the last “so, I was thinkin”. Thought I would put my 2 cents in here as well…

    This week, I decided that I would put together a flu kit. I got inspiration from a few online ready-made ones and then assembled things for myself. My kit contains (hopefully) enough supplies for my family of 7 plus extra (just in case). Here’s what I included…

    Safety goggles – enough pairs for all those in the family that would leave them in place
    N95 masks – 200 of the simple pleated ones and 20 with double shell construction
    2 bottles of rubbing alcohol
    1 large resealable package of baby wipes
    2 large boxes of tissues
    4 boxes of 100 disposible gloves
    50 small garbage bags
    2 large plastic drop sheets
    1 large roll of duct tape

    With my nursing background, I already have things like stethoscopes, thermometers, sphygmomanometer (blood pressure monitor), oximeter and other toys. These stay in my regular first aid/medical kit.

    My order of dried elderberries has also arrived and so I plan to make up sealed jars of the dry ingredients for Bam Bam’s cough syrup to keep in the box as well.

    I would like to make a box with supplies for specific emergencies that is complete with instructions on how to cope with that emergency. Just like the first aid kit in my van and the bug out bin in the garage, it would be good to have an infectious disease kit and perhaps a nuclear fall-out kit assembled as well.

    • 1MoreBoyScout says:

      That sounds like an awesome Idea. I’ve been thinking about an infectious disease kit / flu kit as well. Actually need a bigger container for that addition. We have a fairly large tough plastic tool box for first aid, & it’s FULL! I also want to add a suture kit to it, but we’ll need a bigger, or additional container for anything else.

  72. 1MoreBoyScout says:

    Heya Wolfpack!
    Haven’t been on pc for a while… Not been prepping much the last couple of month’s. Been taking it easy. Braving the Cold last sunday, built a rock & concrete block, meat/fish smoker out back of the house. Smoked (2) 3 1/2 lb. pork sirloins that night by lantern light.
    (They were AWESOME!!) It works great. Been dipping into the food supplies a little. Oatmeal & such…. Fix’n to go walk the frozen creek with .410 & see if I can’t scare up a Wild Turkey or two. Been noticing a lot more deer tracks lately. There were hardly any the past year for some reason. Hope everybody is keeping warm, and keeping your fresh water supplies flowing. Bit of a challenge when it’s this cold!!
    GOD bless all, Aho.

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