What did you do you prep this week?

 What did you do you prep this week?

Good morning folks.

I hope that everyone is doing well today, and that you have a bunch of preps and information to share with the rest of use in the comments below. If you’ve never commented here before that’s not problem – there is always the first time, and we would love for you to take the next step and join the conversation and community by posting a comment.

This week there were several folks that sent emails asking me about “how to get an image to display with their comments” and that’s a good question. Fortunately, it’s quick and easy to do – just go to this site  http://en.gravatar.com/ and enter you email to get started (it’s free).

After you finish signing up and uploading your photo / image / logo when you post a comment your pic will be displayed with it. It’s as easy as 1-2-3.

Okay, before we start with this weeks “what did you do to prep this week” blog segment, I would like to thank Randy V for his generous donation this week via snail mail. Thank you for the support my friend.

I would also like to welcome our newest advertiser Prep & Pantry to The Survivalist Blog.net – Your tracking solution for food storage and preparedness supplies!

Okay, let’s see now… what did I do to prep this week?

With spring just around the corner all I’ve thought about is gardening, layout, soil, PH, sun, what to plant, how much, compost, mulch, weeds… It’s keeping me up at night, folks the gardening bug has bit hard and I can’t wait to start growing something…

Oh… the smell of compost in the morning. That’s the stuff…

IMG 0660 300x225 What did you do you prep this week?

Build these four raised bed garden frames. Will finish with setting these up next week.

IMG 0658 300x225 What did you do you prep this week?

Cleared brush from the corner of my property. My new barn will go here. Note my driveway in the background.

IMG 0659 300x225 What did you do you prep this week?

Bonus pic: Chickens at play…

IMG 0661 300x225 What did you do you prep this week?

“Mini Sentry” .22 caliber trip wire alarm. You can watch the video here.

What did you do to prep this week… come on don’t be shy…

Comments

  1. I got a Food Saver. I have wanted one for two years. My dh read that the Obama administration is cutting back meat inspectors by 20 percent. That will limit the supply of meat, and lead to a significant increase in the price of meat. The impact of the reduction of meat inspects is suppose to hit in June or July. This is on top of the drought. I mentioned to my dh that meat lasts five times longer in the freezer if they are packaged with a food saver—hence the food saver.

    I tell you I am really angry with Obama. He is making the sequester cuts and painful and as noticeable as possible, rather than cutting the pork. Why not stop funding research for why lesbians are fat instead of reducing the number of meat processors? Why not place a moratorium on unnecessary travel (golf trips, vacations, etc.) instead of shutting down tours of the White House? I am now convinced that he is out to punish the middle class.

    I am in food saver heaven. NY Strips were on sale this week so we packaged up and dated 25 lbs. We have 80 lbs. of boneless, skinless chicken breast coming at the end of the month from Zaycon Foods. I hope they have hamburger before the price of meat goes up too much. I will get as much hamburger as I can fit in my freezer. I may have to get another freezer.

    I want to make my own MREs. I am thinking I can food saver some crackers and put them in with a package of tuna or chicken. Another idea is to crumble up a packet of Top Romen, add some freeze dried veggies and food saver that up, and package it with a packet of chicken.

    For breakfast I want to make one with oatmeal and another with grits. I will add coffee tea bags with sugar and dry cream packets, maybe a packet of orange drink, maybe some granola bars and/or power bars.

    The next step in putting together MREs will be to make my own two-person meals from things like noodles or instant rice, a meat and some freeze dried veggies.

    I also need to think about dessert. Maybe I’ll add some fun size candy bars, hard candy, gum, etc.

    Now I am on a mission to collect those packets of eating utensils packed with napkins, and salt and pepper. Maybe I’ll add some wet wipes.

    Has anyone put together their own MREs? If so, what do you put in them? I am looking for ideas.

    Oh, one more thing—we sold $800 worth of stuff on Ebay this week. I don’t have time right now to write an article on how to get started with Ebay, but here are the steps.

    1. Create a PayPal account. (This is how you will get paid.)
    2. Create an Ebay account.
    3. Figure out what you want to sell.
    4. Go to Ebay and enter the name of the first time you want to sell. You may want to see the history of what the item has sold for in the past. This will give you an idea of what you can ask for the item.
    5. Package your items and take exact measurements. (When you create your listing, you will enter these measurements to determine shipping costs. Note: The post office rounds up in terms of weight: if your package weighs 3.1 lbs. its official weight is 4 lbs.) Use this website: http://postcalc.usps.gov/
    6. UPS is cheaper than USPS. (I don’t have a postal calculator for UPS)
    7. List your item on Ebay and select Paypal as they way you want to get paid.
    8. I haven’t figured out how Ebay bills are calculated. The only thing I know thus far is that you are only charged when you sell something.

    • I’ve been using a Food Saver since they first came out. Another great use is to pre-cook stuff and then vacuum it. When chuck roasts were on sale I bought several huge ones and cut them into 2lb roasts. I cooked them all, stuck them in the freezer, and then vacuumed them up. The juices were put in little plastic bags and frozen and added to each roast. Freezing them before vacuuming keeps gunk from getting in the Food Saver.

      I do the same with pork chops and roasts, meatballs (I usually only make them once a year – about 150 at a time), and meatloaf.

      • As silly as it sounds vaccum sealing left over thick soups and stews is great too. They flatten out and stack great in the freezer. I also love to put a slight vacuum then seal meats i am marinating in the fridgeseems like the vac forces the marinades in to the meat.

        • hvaczach,

          Your comment has given me an idea. When the 80 lbs. of chicken breast comes in, we are going to food saver it. We like chicken breast flavored with Italian dressing. Why not just squirt some Italian dressing in with the breasts before placing them in the freezer? Now I am wondering what else I can use as a marinade for the chicken.

          I am loving my food saver.

          • This is an old time favorite of ours works well with beef too! often marinate both together then skewer and grill
            1/4 cup brown sugar
            1/4 cup soy sauce
            1/4 terriyaki sauce
            1/4 cup orange juice
            2 tablespoons dried minced onion
            2 tablespoons dried minced garlic
            red peppar sauce to taste (I.E. Tobassco or my favorites chalula or siracha chili paste)
            add this to 2-3 pounds sliced chicken breast or beef strips marinate for 24-48 hours in the fridge and grill or pan fry in a cast iron skillet.
            you can bag this into smaller servings and seal and freeze then when ready to make thaw and it continues in its own juices to marinate. A note the acid in the juice will actually chemically “cook” the meat a little so don’t be concerned if beef draws a dark color even though raw.
            I sewrve this at partys once in a while and with the acid and salt in the marinade from the soy sauce the meat is fall apart tender after cooking.

            • hv,

              I just realized that if you food saver the meat with extra space, you can pull the meat out of the freezer, dump the marinade in and then reseal the same bag. I am getting it now. Your recipe sounds good.

              I tried something new this week. We had pork chops that we needed to eat. So I dumped in cream of mushroom soup with water, added rice and the pork chops, seasoned it with season pepper, rosemary and thyme. It was really good.

              • That sounds tasty say I posted a couple others on hubpages if you google midwestdad@hubpages.com I have posted some recipe’s a gun review etc. I want to start posting a few more long term food storage articles too just working out the details just happy to help.

                • Almost forgot if you seal anything with bones, I.E. Bone in chicken quarters etc. fold a piece of wax paper twice as wide as your bag and fold in half and slide into bag first this gives you two extra layers of protection from piercing the bag.

          • I got a used food saver for like $5 in a thrift store a few months back. I knew it would be useful but I am ignorant of the bags or whatever it uses: are there special bags or a tube that becomes bags, that I have to buy for it?

            • If it’s an actual “food saver I suggest using real “food saver bags they work the best I buy the rolls and make my own bags its an extra step but cheaper u can get them at walmart or an ace hardware or about any where I can usually get a double roll pack for about 10 bucks i think and that will seal quite a bit but once you start using it you will use it they are really handy.

              • Encourager says:

                What I found with the Food Saver brand bags is that they are now being made much ‘cheaper’, not in cost but in product. The seams along the sides that were factory sealed have gotten small holes and that is where I lost the seal, not what I sealed. Also, I have started to seal a double seal, just to be safe, on the edges I seal.

                The bags I bought at Cabela’s are ZipVac Universal Vacuum Sealer Bags that are much thicker (3 layers). I have never had one of those bags fail me. I also was able to buy them on sale for $2.99 a box…I bought every box they had – I got 8 boxes.

    • worrisome says:

      My neighbor lady has taught me a few things about food savers… She dehydrates lots of her garden produce, mixes the items together with dehydrated meat from whatever she finds on sale and has dehydrated, adds her choice of seasonings (dry), adds pastas of whatever sort she desires, sometimes drops in a dried soup mix of some kind. Then she divides it out and puts it in canning jars and seals it with the food saver. then it is a “just add water” approach when she is ready to use it. I have followed her example on that and it works well. As far as doing it in bags, it is a little harder to do in bags, but she does some things that way so will ask her how she manages that without just sucking the small items up in the food saver.

      I make individual packets for the guys up at the BOL with jerky, dried cranberries, dried cherries, nuts, snack size and they almost always have them in a pocket during the day. And when I decide to store candy, like m&m’s I poke a small hole in the original bag, but then put the bag and all in the food saver bag and seal. Works well. And for the charity containers I have put together, I take several items stick them all in the food saver bag and seal……..Have fun!

      • SCPrepperPoppa says:

        Worrisome,
        Made up a batch of liquid hand soap from the recipe you shared with me acouple of weeks ago. Turned out great and cost all of $2.50!!
        Appreciate your sharing!

        • worrisome says:

          Glad it worke for ya sc! I know it sure saves $$$ when you have a handful of grimey grandiose :)

      • Worrisome,

        You won’t get the small pieces or the spice powders in the food saver machine if you put a piece of a paper towel in before you try to seal it. The paper towel will stop the little pieces from getting sucked into the machine. Just make sure the paper towel goes all the way to the sides of the bag.

      • Encourager says:

        I ‘food saver’ pasta like that. I cut off one edge of the bag, say spaghetti, then put two bags of spaghetti in one food saver bag. I only vacuum out some of the air – until the bags inside are flattened a bit. Otherwise, you can hear the spaghetti breaking – snap, snap, snap.

    • Mystery Guest says:

      BamBam
      I have had more fun with my Foodsaver. More than when I was in adult education and the typewriters would continue to type (if you were fast enought to finish before it did) and I would stop typing to watch it. The instructor told me I could keep typing, but I told her it was to much fun watching the blasted machine. I hated it.
      But I have to control myself as I will think up things to sucker bag when they don’t need to be.
      I love to watch it suck the thing flat. I keep my hand on it and feel the contents get stiffer as the air is sucked out.
      No, I am not nuts or weird, just old with no TV and it doesn’t take much to entertain me.

      • Mini marshmallows in a mason jar and food saver vacuum attachment. Cheap entertainment.

      • Schametti says:

        Heeheh.. I love MG. I am juuuust barely old enough to have gotten to type my first few school papers on my mom’s old typewriter, and I did that very same thing.. :P So fun. Brought back some fun memories for me, thanks.. haha.

        • Schametti,

          You don’t look that old. LOL I took computer programing when I was in grade school. I actually wrote a program for a math game that generated randomized math problems. It had different levels of difficulty and different types of math.

          I don’t think I could work on a typewriter–I am a terrible speller.

          • Schametti says:

            People think I look twelve half the time. haha.. I’m used to it. I just turned 35. And I’m sure Mom kept her old typewriter a lot longer than was ‘cool’ but I loved that old thing, lol.

            • There are several things that are good about an old typewriter. You won’t get viruses nor spam. You will never get a blue screen. You won’t lose information because you forget to hit save once in awhile. Depending on the age you may not even need electricity. Though you might have a hard time finding ribbons for the older models.
              Think I might want to add one to my preps now.

              • Schametti says:

                I’ve gotten my mindset so into prepping, I honestly considered getting a couple of carrier pidgeons. Haha.. I decided I better not, only because I don’t reeeeally want to add animals to my preps just yet, but I fear we’ll have to rely on them again one day. Maybe not though. Hopefully… not.

              • If you have a cloth ribbon you can re-ink it.

        • Schametti, I am old enough to have used a slide rule in school. I found a really good one at the thrift store for four dollars, the cashier was amazed I could multiply and figure the area of a circle with it. Yet another thing I’m glad I store among my preps.

    • Lauri no e says:

      Bam Bam,

      You will love your Food Saver and you have suggested some great ideas.

    • I am set to order my Food Saver next week. I’ll have enough credit card points by then. Not sure how good this one is but you all have given a whole lot of good ideas. I will try them all out. Thanks

    • Mother Earth says:

      Bam Bam…you will love your Foosaver! I’ve been using one for years! I freeze an entire beef every year, nuts, fruits and whatever else I decide to freeze, except corn…too wet! I also use it on canning jars for spices, choc chips, cereal…whatever I buy in bulk. It has been a godsend for freezing meat, it truly keeps so much better. Yet another addiction for you!

    • Bam Bam,

      You will love the machine! You will also find all kinds of ways to use it. My favorite – open a caulk tube and only need to use a little. Seal the rest of it in a food saver bag and the entire tube stays good for many more uses.

    • Rodger Ramjet says:

      When I was in the Army, MRE stood for 3 lies for the price of one.

    • Sw't Tater says:

      Crackers can be dry canned . I saw a video about a month ago,one of the prepper guys had done some in 2000, he opened them in 2012, and they were crispy enuf, you could hear them snap.

      • WYO Ryder says:

        Hi Bam Bam,

        I dehydrate my rice, chicken and veggies, toss them all together w/some chick bouillon and make soup MRE’s with my food saver. I also food saver dinners with dehydrated lasagna, & dehydrated hamburger helper (my kids love the mac n chz kind). We have used them on trail ride camp outs & they taste great.
        Re: ebay, you will receive a monthly statement prior to them charging your Paypal acct. There is a seller’s calculator to in Customer Support to calculate your fees. Congrats on your sales! That is how I buy preps & pay off my LAST credit card…have been feng-shuing my home & horse trailer for months – with great results.
        Have fun!
        PS did you get my link to the doxycycline? I got some from them last week :-)

        • WYO Ryder,

          No, I didn’t see your link. Where did you order the doxycycline from? My dh is allergic to penicillin, so that’s one of the few fish things I can give him.

          • WYO Ryder says:

            Bam Bam – here it is:

            aquaticpharmacy.com

            Doxycycline has almost doubled in price since my last order four months ago..its now $27.59 for 50 ct 250 mg.
            Fast/Free shipping :-)

            PS I am not in any way, affiliated with this web store.

            • WYO Ryder,

              I just ordered doxycycline and amoxicillin. Whoot! Whoot! And they took PayPal. Thank you for the heads up and for check back to see if I had read your comment from a few days ago.

            • Schametti says:

              OMG thank you – this is awesome. Fish Antibiotics are nearing next on my buy list, and I was wondering where/what/how, so I’ve bookmarked this, and once I figure out WHAT to buy, and WHY I need it.. then now I’ll know where. Appreciate the link very much!! :)

              • Schametti,

                Patriot Nurse has an excellent video on SHTF antibiotics. I would recommend that you check out the prices at Cal. Vet. Supply. The doxycycline is important to stock because that’s something folks who are allergic to penicillin can take–and people can develop an allergy to penicillin at any point in life.

                http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DOfthwm_v3E&noredirect=1

                • Schametti says:

                  Aw I love her. Patriot Nurse is awesome, haha. I watched this video, thank you sooo much for sharing. Took notes. Noted the top five drugs I need and why, and subscribed to her channel so I can learn more later. Thanks, Bam!! <3

      • Sw’t Tater,

        We vacuum sealed crackers in the bags today. For lunch MREs I put together foil packs of already made tuna salad and crackers, added a Power Bar and some other snacks, a utensil set with napkin that I snagged from the deli at Publix and viola–MREs for less than $3. I also included an individually wrapped wet wipe to clean up with before eating. I put in some EmergenC as well for electrolyte replacement. (We have Berkey water filters for water.)

        We made up breakfast, lunch and dinner for three days for the two of us and got that vacuum sealed. The average cost was about $3.50. I might have to write an article on this.

    • Thank you so much Bam-Bam for both your info on Food Savers and selling on Ebay. It is greatly appreciated. Which one did you get? I was eye-balling them at Wal-mart yesterday to see how they work.
      Plus, with 4 pack rats in our house we have lots to sell on Ebay.
      Hannah

      • Hannah,

        We got the Food Saver 2030–that was the mid range one. If you’ve never used one before, the trick is to make sure you curve the bag into the plastic catch thingie before trying to vacuum out the air and seal. I am really happy with the model we purchased.

    • FarmerKin says:

      I accordion folded a stack of toilet paper and vacuum sealed it to carry in my Get Home Bag. Also sealed packs of crackers and candy for the GHB. Thinking about trying to vacuum seal the clothing too to save room.

      • I pulled the core out of a roll of tp and vac sealed it, and it went down to about the same size as two decks of cards. I also vac sealed all my meds,fire starting stuff and anything else in my GHB and BOB that I did not want to get wet in case I had to walk in the rain without cover or if the bag got dunked in water by accident.

      • FarmerKin;
        You can purchase the Vacuum Bags for clothing. Just place clothing inside and roll it up. It has a built in air release system to expunge the air, when you need to open it up just unzip the bag, pull the clothing out. I found several in a package I purchase for our extra bedding.

    • I use a FoodSaver with the jar lid attachment (available on eBay) so that I can vacuum seal shelf stable dry foods in clean canning jars. By sucking out the oxygen, you can store cake mixes, instant pudding mixes, instant mashed potatoes, chcolate chips, instant milk, dry soup mixes, baking mixes, beef jerky, etc. much longer than just storing these in their original pasteboard boxes or plastic bags in your pantry. If you don’t use all the dry food in a canning jar, you just re-seal the remaining food in the jar until you need it. I always freeze any food containing flour (pasta, crackers, baking mixes…) for 72 hrs, then let it come back to room temperature before vacuum canning. This cold treatment prevents weevils and grain maggots from hatching out in the food should I not get a good air tight seal on a jar. Unlike with pressure canning, you can re-use undamaged canning lids multiple times when you dry can/vacuum can.

      • Linda,

        OMG, I am so going to check this out. I have my dry storage staples in half gallon canning jars anyway. I am totally thinking pantry porn here. My kitchen cabinets are going to look so good without all those bulky boxes. I am going to food saver everything.

        • You can also vacuum seal salads in jars. They last a whole lot longer than in a regular container. Don’t add the salad dressing though.

        • I thought about getting a FoodSaver. I hear they’re great, but they cost quite a bit more than I can afford right now.

          Instead, I bought a Pump-n-Seal ($35). It works great, and I really like it. Vacuum seals meat in ziplock bags well, and you can vacuum seal mason jars, too (takes 20 pumps to do a jar…just a few seconds). It’s nice because the device fits into one of my kitchen drawyers and doesn’t take up much space.

          One of these might be a good backup for all you FoodSaver owners in case of power failure. I like my Pump-n-Seal so much that I no longer really feel I need anything else. (And no, I have no commerical interests in the company…I’m just a happy customer).

      • I was vacuum sealing my canning jars also but then I got lazy and just started adding an oxygen pack to each jar and letting them seal that way. The good thing about that method is you can open your jar and remove the amount needed and then just close it back up and it will seal again since a 100 cc absorber is still viable.

        Since the plastic in vacuum bags will break down over time and allow oxygen to enter I’ve placed multiple packages of absorbers in a Mylar bag and then an oxygen absorber in the bag before sealing.

    • Grumpy Vermonter says:

      Bam Bam, thanks for the Ebay information! The posting info, especially. Fantastic that you are doing so well!
      I have a Food Saver that I need to use more. For vacuuming jars, what is the thing you use on top? And where is a good place to buy if you know? Thanks again.

  2. Well… with the traveling for my interview and all, not much got done this week either. …sigh…. the interview went well, (thanks for all the prayers) but things changed and he wasn’t able to hire me at this time (my guess is a budget cut, but who knows). I am trying to not view this as wasted money, but it is money we could have spent on preps.

    We have decided to change tracks and focus on a different area of the country and have tentative plans to move a few states away this summer, so I am focusing my energies on securing a position in that area. My fiance’s job will move with him so we don’t have to worry about that. It’s all in the hands of the universe now.

    • Hang in there Shandi! It’s a tough market. Persevere and good luck.

    • JeffintheWest says:

      Hmpf. Seems if “things changed” he would have been able to call you and save you the trip. But maybe i don’t know all the facts here…. ;-)

      • I was thinking the same, but there is still the possibility that he’ll be able to offer me something so he wanted to meet with me. It did give us the chance to re-review the area to make sure it is a viable option to live, so it all worked out…. still a little frustrating, but it’s like my mom said, it wasn’t meant to be at this time… there’s something/somewhere else we’re supposed to do/be

        • JeffintheWest says:

          I hear ya. Glad it wasn’t a TOTAL waste of time, then!

          Of course, Bam Bam is right, but only if your total deductions meet a certain minimum threshold when it becomes useful to itemize them. Even with travelling several times for a week or more on business and losing a kidney to cancer, I may not meet the threshold for itemization for 2012 (hard as that is to believe!)

    • Shandi,

      Keep in mind that you can write off travel expenses for interviewing for a new job. That will at least defray some of the cost.

  3. riverrider says:

    hi all, let’s see….cleared more thicket on the corner, maybe two more days work to finish….got my blanks in, they are great! german made, shoot clean and loud…went on patrol for ammo and silver, no-go on both. most just laughed at me when i asked. felt so sorry for one guy, i almost sold him some of mine….made a grocery run, stocked up on soups on sale, canned potatoes, bottled water n such, some braided fishing line for tripwires and the go bag. brakes for the back-up bov….screamed at the tv a lot. that’s about it this week. stack it high folks. the ill winds are blowing stronger every day. sic semper tyrannis. III.

    • Rider of Rohan says:

      “….screamed at the tv a lot.”
      Hahaha, me too. I’m getting good at it, and I scream at the computer screen as well. Good idea on the fishing line, I haven’t thought about that. Thanks for the idea.

      • SCPrepperPoppa says:

        Rider,
        I’ve just about quit TV totally! The news so annoys and upsets me! The America I grew in is gone I believe.

        • I have stopped watching TV since the election. No Glen Beck either. I can’t stand to see what is happening to this once great country.

          • Schametti says:

            I know GB is hit or miss with the love/hate, but I just love him. I trust him, and he tells me what to worry about before it gets here, I like that.. lol.

    • Backwoods Prepper says:

      Ahh T.V. February made one year without t.v. I can’t say as I miss it. I do read alot more wether it be computer or books.

      • New prepper says:

        Am a little over three years with no T.V. (catch alittle when visiting kids :)).. I do feel like my time is much better used without it. Lots more reading and learning.

      • gotcha all beat – separated/divorced since 2001 – no tv since – have only missed certain programs – only catch a program when I visit one of the kids or grandkids. save a lot of money and my vocal cords.

        course, I need to quit reading the news on the puter…..I slap the damn thing- fraid I might break a nail…..roflmao -

        • k. fields says:

          Aw grannyj, since 2001? I’m now 63 (or will be come April) and I’ve never had a television …

          • k fields – so that’s how you get so much accomplished!

            You WIN! The longest without TV! And since April is right around the corner, Happy Birthday early!

            • k. fields says:

              thanks for the birthday wish :)
              It’s amazing the effect TV has had on society – never having owned one, it’s incredible how many conversations I hear that I have no clue about what is being discussed. It was never a political statement to not have one, I grew-up without electricity and until recently, there was no way to get it where I currently live. Today, I could get a dish but I never seem to actually get around to doing so and at this point in my life, I doubt I ever will.

              • Grumpy Vermonter says:

                k fields, Happy Birthday from me as well! You probably are able to have much more intelligent conversations as well. We’ve been without TV for many years and don’t miss it a bit. In fact, I’m shocked whenever I am visiting someone who does have it on as to how much filth and violence passes for “entertainment” these days!

      • JeffintheWest says:

        Yeah, I stopped really watching TV for the most part back when I was 17. Don’t know why, really, just found it boring and stupid and shrill, and that was 1977! I catch maybe two or three hours of TV a week, if there happens to be a series on I like (“Elementary” lately, but only the new episodes), or something big happens; and for the rest I keep the box off. Nothing I really want to hear from the MSM anyway. I find the time much better spent with books — though I can waste a whole day that way when I should be out breaking ground for the garden or whatever…. ;-)

        • Our family lived out of the country till I was 12, no TV, played outside, fished, read, painted, played cards, worked puzzles, made crafts,came back to the states and could not understand the watching TV all the time. My father called TV garbage for the mind. I guess that stuck with me.
          So much to do in life! Not much time for TV if you want to accomplish other skills.
          Got married. DH used to watching TV so we had cable for years. Then had children, I seldom used it as a babysitter.
          I either did something with them,or encouraged them to be independent, read, go outside and play hard, be creative with your mind. What is with the “kids rule” on TV anyway, that’s not what the Bible says! Kids don’t rule in our family, well NOT most of the time! Kids are crafty I tell you!
          So off with cable. That has been 12 years. We monitor what goes into our children’s minds, if garbage in, out comes garbage. My daughter watches I love Lucy. Also, NO internet access for her. I can not stand over them all day!!!
          I have to admit, that the computer thing caught me off guard,as my DH and I did not grow up with it. Our son is on it TOO much. He is 20, and in college. I have to monitor myself with the computer too, as I need to be working up the garden, etc. I set an allotted amount of time, and shut it off.

      • I'm A Pret Kat says:

        I’m almost six years without TV. I miss it sometimes.

    • JP in MT says:

      RR:

      I have 2 church families that were looking for lightweight 22 LR handguns. Turned out I will be able to help both of them. My ammo supply is sufficient to help both get started. I’m just glad that I had to money when I did, and bought what I did. As I can now help others who help others.

  4. Mystery Guest says:

    Well I bought some spring hard white wheat.
    Recieved my Excaliber wire racks and silicone sheets.
    Bought more coffe beans.
    I found out I am not smart enough nor strong enough to get a bucket open with one of those tools. If it comes to it I will seal the things with duck tape. Nothing more frustrating for an old women than to not be able to get to her STUFF.
    The only one that knew I ordered a grain mill was my son. My daughter came over and in great surprise asked if I was being sneaky. I told her couldn’t very well be the sneaky it was sitting right there, BUT WHEN I DO I DO HAVE OPSEC.

    • Mystery Guest,

      I wonder if you can get a foot and a half length of PVC pipe, fit it over the bucket opener tool, and use that as a kind of lever to multiply the force you exert on the bucket lid?

      • Mystery Guest says:

        Bam Bam
        Finally got one side to pop up and when that happens the rest is easy to pry up..
        Thanks for the idea though.

    • Schametti says:

      I don’t know what your budget is like MG, but I got the sold-seperately twist on/off gama seal lids from Emergency essentials.. I forget how much they were.. ten dollars maybe? :/ But I was worried about brute prying off the other ones too, and while I STILL haven’t gotten my darn rice into the buckets with these lids, I think they’ll be a lot easier to get on/off when the time comes. You might consider them, if you can fit them into the prepping budget. :)

      • Mystery Guest says:

        Schametti
        I have buckets I ordered with twist off lids and then I have some that were given to me.
        But I can’t let a good bucket go to waste, these are ones my sister picked up at various places in their bakery sections.
        But thanks for the advice.

        • Schametti says:

          I gotcha! That makes a whole lot of sense! Good luck with those stubborn buckets then!! :)

      • k. fields says:

        Schametti – If your hands are small, I suggest getting some Teflon paste (it’s made for use on the spin-on, disposable cartridge type water filters sold at most hardware stores and comes in a small tube) and apply a bit of that to the threaded area of the Gama lids before you tighten them down. The lids will seal better because you can get them tighter and they are much easier to remove (just like the water filters).

        • BamBam-k.fields-Schametti& Mystery Guest;
          Gamma lids can be purchased at grocery store, not sure if we can mention the name so here it is with a blank spaces(West Coast)Win*o. The cost at the last time I looked was $6.48 per lid, now that was before gas price took a jump out here. I use these lids for buckets I get into everyday or items we use a lot.

        • Schametti says:

          My hands are definitely small. Thanks for the advice, I will try and get some asap.. MY GOAL is to work on getting my rice, beans, and pasta in those darn buckets sometime in the next week or two, I’ve been stalling because of the mylar bags, lol.. But thanks for the lid tips. That sounds great.. I will look at Lowe’s next time I’m out getting more gardening supplies!! :)

    • If by “bucket” you mean a food bucket, you can buy gamma lids for food buckets. It takes a rubber mallet and some determination to seat a gamma lid rim onto a food bucket, but once it’s in place, you can just twist open the gamma lid itself, by hand, whenever you want to open the bucket. I store 25 lbs of popcorn in a gamma-lidded food bucket and get into that bucket at least once a week to make popped corn for a snack. I get gamma lids at my local Winco supermarket for around $6 per lid.

  5. Did a check of the 228 canning jars of food I dry canned these past few weeks and found a dozen lids had come undone. In each case there were dust-like food particles adhering to the rubber ring coating on the lid underside so wiped the jar rims, put on new, clean lids and re-sealed with the Food Saver attachment. Will inspect every jar weekly for the next month just to make sure of no bad seals. Set out my two container gardens of tomato plants — the one small ripe tomato that was almost ready to harvest was half-eaten by local birds on the second day. Will have to go to the hardware store and buy bird netting. Pruned my two pomegranate bushes just in time as the leaf buds have started to swell, saved the largest sticks to store as fuel for my rocket stove. Set a flat of chili pepper seedlings outside to harden off and will baby the plants to make sure thay do not dry out during the day or get too cold at night. Received the security door hardware designed to make doors “kick-proof”, now need to buy two steel security doors to turn one of the bedroom suites into a safe room. Received my order of dehydrated or freeze-dried carrots, celery, pimento peppers, jalapenos, chives and raspberries from Mother Earth Products (costs a lot less than similar food from survival-oriented businesses but not packaged for long-term storage). Need to buy more canning jars to re-package this food for the long term. Took my senior rat patrol cat to the vet for his annual check-up and was told he has a broken molar, so now am giving him pain meds twice daily plus a diet of soft food until he can get dental surgery next week. The vet estimates this is going to cost over $900 when all is said and done, but I’d rather have the cat fit for duty than have to use rat trap and poisons to protect my food storage and, of course, as my “employee” he has full medical benefits. :-)

    • Mylar bags and O2 absorbers might be a cheaper option for repackaging your foods, and they are very easy to seal with an iron.

      The Mormon stores have them really cheap if you have one near you, and they are really thick, or you can order them on line from the Mormon Store (but have to purchase 100 at a time ) or find them on ebay.

      • I did consider using mylar and oxygen absorbers, but both items are basically one-time-use items. I like the fact that I can re-use my canning jars and lids any number of times when I vacuum seal and I can open and close and re-seal a large jar multiple times if only using a litlle of the food in it.

      • Michelle,

        There is no such thing as The Mormon Store. It is not a store. It is the Bishop’s Storehouse (or the Lord’s Storehouse). However, you are specifically referring to the cannery, not the storehouse – that is called the Family Storage Center.

        I ask you kindly to please make a note of it. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints do not run for-profit stores.

        • Kate,

          I often refer to the LDS website as the “LDS Online Store”. Is this incorrect? The tab says, “Self-Reliance–store.led.org. I think that is what got me started calling it a “store”. No offense was intended. I think the Mormons are doing a remarkable service here. If the rest of America were willing to sacrifice a few meals to support the storehouse, our country would be in much better shape.

          • Bam Bam,

            No offense was taken! I just want everyone to be clear that the cannery is not a ‘store’ as most people think when they read the word ‘store.’.

            When ordering on-line it is correct to refer to it as the ‘LDS Online Store.’ However, you may have noticed when you get your box that it actually came from the Church’s ‘Distribution Services.’ I can live with ‘LDS On-line Store.”

            When you go to the local Storehouse building, you are going to the ‘Family Home Storage Center.’ Sorry I forgot to include the word ‘Home’ on my previous posts – as everyone knows, you can’t edit your comment after you hit Submit. It is officially the ‘Family Home Storage Center.’ It is not a ‘store’ at all!

            My concern is that many non-Latter-Day Saints may think that the Church is running a chain store conglomerate selling ‘stuff’ to preppers at discounted prices. Nothing could be further from the truth. Many Storage Centers do not let non-members purchase food storage (I know you know that because we have discussed it here before). Many others Storage Centers do let non-members participate.

            All I am asking is that the Wolf Pack think twice about using the word ‘store’ when referring to the Family Home Storage Center.

            I am serious when I say no offense was taken. However, if it is OK with the rest of the Pack, I may mention this again (every so often) to ensure the new Pack Members understand what is happening and why the Bishop Storehouse and the Family Home Storage Center exist.

            • k. fields says:

              Thanks for the explanation and I think it’s definitely worth repeating. I’ve mentioned a number of times here in the past that I feel any non-member that uses their services should include a donation with their payment as thanks for their work.

              • K. Fields,

                I asked about this and the woman who answered the phone said they preferred that we shared our food with those in need.

    • Schametti says:

      Oh nooooo. I didn’t even THINK about birds. :( I am growing itty baby seedling tomato plants on my table right now, and will be putting them out in a couple weeks, but maybe I should learn more about birds and pests before I get them out there.. and buy the proper netting? Ugh, glad I learned now though, instead of finding my fledgling fruits all nommed on before I even got to them.

      • Yep, the local wildlife see succulent ripe fruit and juicy leaves and think “lunch buffet.” You may also want to buy a canister of Seven Dust to sprinkle over the leaves of your vegetable plants when they have grown enough to have two regular size leaves. This will prevent tomato horn worms and assorted insects from feasting on your plants. Last autumn my four young tomato plants were completely stripped of leaves within 48 hrs and just looked like a bunch of green twigs – even though I was using tongs to pull off and kill tomato horn worms twice daily.

        • tommy2rs says:

          I grind horseradish root and garlic in the blender with some warm water and let it sit a while in mason jars. Filter out the chunks and then put it in spray bottle with a few drops of dish detergent and spray the tomato plants every couple of days or so. Deters a good many pests from dining on my tomatoes.

        • If the birds are pecking at your tomatoes, and if you don’t want to start feeding them with some seed in bird feeders, you can just cover the ripe tomatoes with a piece of cloth. If you feed the birds, they will not both your garden. (However, I choose not to feed them because I don’t want a bird convention along with all the bird poop in my back yard.) So instead, I individually wrap the tomatoes as they ripen with some old cloth.

          I cut up an old sheet for just this purpose. When you see a hint of red, loosely tie the cloth around that specific tomato. The birds won’t bother the green ones. I have managed over 30 indeterminate plants with this strategy without feeling overwhelmed.

          If you have determinate tomatoes, you may want to opt for the bird netting.

          Grow your tomatoes in lots of compost and you won’t have many bugs.

          • Schametti says:

            Seven Dust.. Sad, I thought this was a band, lol.. Wrote it down, shall google, and figure out when/where to buy. Thanks for yet another tip!! :)

            I’m so nervous that my first adventurous spring into gardening will somehow end up a disaster. Every time I think I’m starting to get a grip on everything I have to learn, there’s a whole other area I haven’t even considered. Yikes!! LOL.

            • Don’t worry! You can always ask me – I will be happy to help!

              • Schametti says:

                I’m going to be setting up one 55 gallon drum container.. two 30 gallon drums.. and two slightly smaller pots for the dwarf blueberry plants.. Do you think I should add worms to my containers? And is Seven Dust safe for ALL plants? (Radish, Onion, Potato, Tomato, Blueberry, Strawberry, Etc?).

                • I would say that Seven Dust isn’t safe at all. For a new garden, use lots of compost and you won’t have much of a bug problem.

                  I saw your note on my response to the worm question at the end of the comments section! I am glad you saw it!!

                  • Sevin dust will kill all beneficial insects, too. Plus, it will leave residue in and on your produce.

                    • Schametti says:

                      No seven dust. Check.

                      So about compost.. I don’t feel comfortable, at least not YET.. in making my own compost.. so what should I use?

                      I saw somewhere while googling that putting raw eggs in the potting soil helped in that area, but.. I can’t see that being enough.

                      Does compost keep birds and harmful insects off your plants? Or am I just better looking into netting? This sounds too complicated for me, I know it, lol.

                    • JeffintheWest says:

                      Totally agree with Kate and Practical on that — my personal position is that if it kills them, it’s likely to try to do the same thing to me, and I have plenty of enemies without adding myself to the list! :-)

                    • The main thing about good compost and good soil is to raise Healthy , vigorous plants. Most healty plants can keep bad insects in check. If you keep an eye out for any starting infestations you can help with hand picking and washing with a little soap mix in a hose end sprayer.

                • Encourager says:

                  Schametti, go to the library and get a book on organic gardening. It is not that complicated. Learn how to do it yourself.

                  Just remember, if you spray or use pesticides on your plants, you will be eating that pesticide yourself. Understand? It is better to learn what is best for YOU and then apply that to what you grow.

                  Start SMALL. One or two tomato plants, a short row of lettuce, maybe some radishes sown in the same lettuce row. Learn with a small garden so you will not be overwhelmed by a big garden and neglect it.

  6. Stocked up on pet food for my 24 cats, 12 dogs and Pico my Parrot. Learned that 2/3’s of all Lesbians are overweight and that the Zionist Bankers control “everything” from Alex Jones.

    Also that Our Dear Leader is really Dick Cheney wearing a Jesse Jackson mask. Who knew?

    Been looking for the book, “How to Cook Cats for Dummies” just in case the SHTF does happen. (maybe I had better get a few more?)

    I am seeking the advice of the Wolf Pack. I’ve been posting a bunch on various Survival sites and people keep calling me a “douche”. Is this a good thing or a bad thing?

    gone

    • Oh, one last thing, Glen Beck says that we should all be good little Patriots and like that Indian guy Ghandi , (who served in the English army as a rifleman) surrender up our guns. Does anyone know where I go to do this?

      • tommy2rs says:

        I finally got my appointment as a federal gun collector. I’ll be collecting guns (and ammo) in your area this week. Don’t worry I’ll find you, I’m with the government and we know where you are at all times.

        /really sick humor

        • JeffintheWest says:

          And if not, our UAVs will FIND you!

        • tommy2’s,
          All I’ve got is an Official Red Ryder lever action BB rifle with a compass in the stock. I know that it’s not much, but it can put your eye out!

          You being from the Gubermint, you already knew that!

      • Schametti says:

        He said that WEEKS ago, Things are changing so fast these days. (Yes, I’m a total GB nerd, lol), I love him. And he said to give the guns up only if they come for them by force, and to stand up for your second amendment rights peacefully, (I’m not saying I agree, I think this is the one thing I HAVEN’T agreed with him on, truthfully), BUT I’m not entirely sure I can go down in a blaze of glory against a full armored swat team, just to prove a point. :/ Live to fight another day and all that rot.. :) .lol.

        • He said it, don’t much care when. I wondering if Cheaper than Dirt and the NRA knew he said it when they signed on to run ads on his radio show?

          • Schametti says:

            GB is a huge supporter of guns, and has dozens of them. He’s not anti-gun or anything, so I doubt Cheaper than Dirt have any trouble with him at all. He promotes their business almost every day! And he isn’t saying don’t buy or stock up, just the opposite actually.. he just says give them up IF it comes down to a marshal law scenario. But even then he’s saying it’s an individual choice.

        • Think about this for a moment…

          If he said it any other way, do you think the feds would try to shut him down for ‘inciting violence’ or ‘advocating the violent overthrow of the government’? They already audit him and all his employees to death.

          If what the government is doing to Ted Nugent is any indication, I’d have to say yes. Federal agents are looking for anything to pin a charge on Ted. They are harassing/pressuring his friends in a effort to dig something up.

          I understand what Glenn is trying to do with his peace, love, and hope, but at this point I think he is mostly preaching to the choir or it is falling on deaf ears.

          The left doesn’t want to just control, they are out to destroy any culture that does not conform to their narrow minded views. Anything viewed as a symbol of that targeted culture the left must destroy to show their dominance. Since they can’t win on the battlefield of ideas, logic, and fact, they use the government as their cudgel instead.

          • There is a big difference between keeping his mouth shut and saying, “We should all turn our guns in, you know like Ghandi, or Martin Luther King”. WE SHOULD ALL TURN OUR GUNS IN.
            So with all due respect, your lecture is pointless.
            As for being under the watching eyes of Government, we all are. I’ve had a white Phone Company van parked 1/4 mile from my ranch on and off for the past 4 years. Nobody every gets out, nobody ever does any repairs.

            So, boo hoo for poor Mr. Beck.

            • Ease up there, Ghost. Wasn’t lecturing you. I was just throwing my opinion out there about an observation of mine. You are free to do whatever you want with it to include ignoring my opinion if it doesn’t fit your views. No need to get all hot under the collar about it.

              If anyone has the episode date when Glenn made those comments, please let me know. I’d like to hear them in their entirety without the bias filter of a third party. To me, something is not adding up about these alleged comments…

              • That’s right Cain, Beck talks out of both sides of his mouth. He’s said this 2-3 times within the past month. “When the Government comes to take your guns first refuse. Then if they insist, turn them in and insist that they arrest you so we can flood the jails. Use passive resistance like Ghandi or MLK”.

                There has been more than one article written about this, by Larry Klayman and Allan Keyes for starters.

                The Problem is; The Second Amendment was not written into The Bill of Rights for passive resistance, and Beck is playing the people who listen to his gas. He’s an actor who plays a part.

                • Tactical G-Ma says:

                  Ghost,
                  Beck, Keyes, Limbaugh, et al are first and foremost entertainers, ratings who***. If they don’t get the numbers, they don’t keep their jobs. If MSM lies through their teeth, why wouldn’t commentators? Now they do cater to a certain demographics so they can keep there sponsors but if they really cared why just run their mouths and rake in the dough? I say, “Put up or Shut up!”

                  • Schametti says:

                    I think Glen is different. I know that probably sounds naive, lol.. but I’ve listened to all of them, a lot.. for awhile now, and Glen might be entertaining.. but I do think he speaks the truth, (sure, as he sees it), but I’ve found that he’s right so much more often than not. He genuinely wants to report the TRUTH, and not a MSM biased version of it. I’ve been watching him daily on DISH, on his new self-owned or whatever network.. And at least In MY opinion, he’s different. He no longer has to say things he doesn’t believe, now that he works for himself.

    • JeffintheWest says:

      You could try “How to Wok Your Dog” over on Amazon…. (Ok, just kidding.)

      I’m guessing if you’re being called a douche by them, you are probably telling them things they don’t want to hear. That seems to be a pretty typical response from people who are forced to hear ideas or thoughts they aren’t ready, willing or able to accept.

      • Jeff,
        All I wrote was that Communism was the wave of the future, Obama should get a 3rd. term, the dollar was strong and it is silly to buy gold or silver, Global Warming is real, and buying all of these “so called” prepping items was a waste of time as our country is in good hands with the Democrats in charge, GO FIGURE?
        (sarcasm)
        Got to run, Dancing with the Stars reruns are on TV.

        • WYO Ryder says:

          Ghost,

          I worked at a tannery for years. The owner used to cook us up all kinds of ‘exotics’…griz bear was greasy, rattlesnake is okay, musk ox sucks, but mountain lion tasted like sweet pork. He cooked the big cat in a crock pot w/ veggies.
          Your house cats are probably too skinny, best for mousing anyways :-)

          • k. fields says:

            I’ve got friends in Switzerland that still occasionally butcher and eat dogs and cats – just a part of their culture …

        • Schametti says:

          Douche. *Rolls Eyes*

          Heehee.. Just Kidding. Humor is Fundamental. ;)

          I hope when TSHTF and the grid goes down, (providing I get my HAM before then), that someone will entertain me like this on the airwaves.. lol.. cause I get bored easy with muh internets.

          • Schametti says:

            Hah, that comment was for Ghost, clearly.. don’t know why it’s directly under WYO’s post.

    • Only one way to cook a cat. On a spit over an open fire. Greasy critters.

    • JP in MT says:

      Ghost:

      My last case resort is a book “How to Serve Man”. On the back cover is a recipe for “Texas Chili w/Cowboy”.

      I think the cats will come 1st in our neighborhood, but it’s always good to be prepared.

    • After reading the majority of your posts to better understand where you are coming from I have elected to scrap my original response to your last post. I see no point in further wasting my time with someone that is trolling this site and its guests. Much of your commentary is a poor attempt to illicit a hostile response and done so in poor taste.

      Reading your comments tells me that you don’t understand the purpose of what emergency preparedness or prepping is for and why we do it. People sincerely seeking advice on prepping don’t come in throwing barbs. I feel that your posts show a general disdain for those in the prepping community, lack of maturity, and that you may suffer from a possible internal, cranial defect of some sort. So if you are truly sincere about seeking advice on prepping, I apologize. Start reading the information posted by the links MD provides to learn more. If not, please gently caress yourself on off to another website as we don’t have time for your nonsense.

      Lastly, if you have to ask the question, then you already know the answer.

      • Tactical G-Ma says:

        Cain,
        I’m lost again. To whom are you referring?

      • Sorry dude, didn’t know that you were top super secret boobah of this site. By the way, where did you get all of the straw for the straw men argument you just posted?

        If you and other wish to believe that the millions of $$$$$, fame, book sales have nothing to do with the so called “Conservative ” voices that come out of your radio, good, that’s your lack of understanding.

        Please note, I never insulted you, called you names, of judged YOU in any way. Also, if you can’t deal with my attempts at humor and seem to see some weird attempt to disrespect folks on this site, well that’s YOUR problem as well.

  7. JR from AR says:

    I havent posted in this segment in a while so I thought I would today.
    Picked up 8 boxes of .40 calibre hollow points, 4 boxes of 9mm hollow points, 500 rounds of .22 magnums, 2 boxes of 12 guage home defense slug/buckshot, 2 boxes of 12 guage #4 buckshot, 1000 rounds of .223, 150 rounds of .30 carbine
    Picked up a like new Winchester Model 70 with a 4 x 12 Leopold scope at auction CHEAP
    Bought two neck knives
    Bought a 24 gun safe delivered and set up
    Had my buddy build me a tall shelf for the pantry for Mason jars
    Got my lithium battery solar generator in but have not tested it yet with the accessories
    Bought a Bush hog brand rotary cutter one year old for half the price of a new one at auction
    Bought a trashcan lid full of sharpening stones (several new) for $7.50 at auction
    Bought a drill press on a stand and a large vice for my shop at auction
    That is all I can think of at the moment
    Take heed sheep and those not yet convinced, hear the flushing of the toilet as everything is going down the sewer…BE READY!!

  8. Had a long list of things. Lost it all somewhere in computer land. So, all I have for you now are payers to all and God bless, Linda Lou

  9. Garden, garden and more garden!

  10. I am prepping for a new snow storm this week to hit on Monday. Weather reports vary from 8 to 18 inches on snow and I have no place to put the snow if it is a lot, so I may have to wait until late April to get out. I am parking my truck near the end of the road, getting more supplies of dog food, and I loaded firewood from the outside piles to inside the garage so I don’t kill myself shoveling more snow to get to it. The work I had to do from last week’s storm took 3 days shoveling roofs, pathways all over and removing the snow the plow guy couldn’t remove, 30 feet x 4 feet high x 4 feet wide just for my mailbox area the hwy plows piled up.

    • worrisome says:

      Sounds just awful Donna!

    • Repair Mama says:

      Holy cow. snowmagaddon! since I moved farther south, We dont really see that kind of snow unless we have some kind of freak weather event! I love to watch it snow and play in it a little, but dont want it to linger more than 2 days!
      I hope you make it through o.k. and Prayers are coming your way.
      good luck

    • Petticoat Prepper says:

      Good grief! Sounds like you need a snow blower! Hope all you get is a light dusting and not a big dump to deal with!

    • Rider of Rohan says:

      Good Lord, I’m basking in 70 degree warmth. Not that I’m rubbing it in or anything. Good luck.

      • No rubbing it in would be saying it’s only 87° f today, it was 94°f yesterday.(a record high) We did get 1.8″ of snow (yes inches) that melted by 10 am the next day just last month. That was enough to delay the golf tournament up at Dove Mountain.

        • WYO Ryder says:

          Please send the snow this way! We don’t want any more stinking fires this summer!!

      • HeeHee–it was a balmy 80 degrees this afternoon here in sunny Florida.

        • There is a trade off–cold winters,lots of snow up here near the Canadian border vs tornados, hurricanes, and earthquakes in warmer climates.
          Planting season starts usually mid May or when the top soil is defrosted, but with this much snow it will start as soon as it melts as it insulated the ground from too much frost..

          We are having enough snow to raise the level of the Mississippi River for you folk down south. Thanks for prayers, but there can be a reason for unanswered prayers.

        • k. fields says:

          Eighty in March? What’s it going to be 150 come August?
          No thanks, I’ll stay here where it averages between the 40’s at night to the mid 60’s during the day pretty much year around.

          • Encourager says:

            Last year at this time it was in the 80’s in Michigan. All the trees were leafed out, the fruit trees were full of blossoms. Then in April we had 3 killing frosts…give me snow any day in March, which slows down the trees blossoming. I want some fruit this year!

  11. worrisome says:

    Good morning to all! This past week at work was a very difficult one and I am feeling depressed about people today. Since I studied and printed that article here about the normalcy bias, I find that I see people through that lense and this week at work was certainly a fine example of how that all works!

    I got in a big order from King Arthur flour, an order from Mountain Rose Herbs, some repair parts for the duct system in my house, and went car shopping. Didn’t buy anything but have narrowed it down to a Dodge Durango or possibly a pickup, brand unknown yet.

    Took the little old lady across the street to the eye dr. She made made me a wonderful meatball and vegetable soup.

    The guys up at the BOL say that I can come see the “improvements” this week. They were working on cabinets in the shop and the fencing for the vegetable garden, who knows what else they have let their creative minds lead them to. So I am planning a trip up there with vegie seeds and vegie plants this next week………still a bit early for that area but they will have them ready. Speaking of vegies, the neighbor and I shared the tasks on his and my gardens and planted some things this week as well.

    List in hand, I am off today to catch up and add stores to the pantry, and items to the shop.

    And does anyone have any ideas to capture a raccoon that has figured out a way to get through the electric fence and into my galvanized trash cans with very tight lids and get into the dog food? Hope chased him off this morning but she won’t stay out at night to keep him away.

    • Petticoat Prepper says:

      My DS had a problem with racoons getting her chickens. She rented a trap, caught 3 in as many nights. Then relocated them far away from her place. Good luck with this problem.

      • Check with your local authorities. I have heard that many don’t want raccoons relocated as they may transmit diseases from one location to another. At least in my part of Oregon, it seems that some have been advised to relocate 6 feet under. But should always double check since different places have different rules and noone wants to get in trouble trying to get rid of trouble. By the way sometimes trouble finds it’s way back home.

      • Encourager says:

        About the raccoons… we were having a terrible problem with them. We could catch them in one of those Hav-A-Heart traps but they always managed to push their way out of it. BTW, we did not have a heart, we killed them once they were trapped. What we ended up doing was strengthen all the sides where the trap came together, we wrapped wire around the edges. Then the ‘door’ which was what they bent to get out, we put sharpened metal so when they pushed with their butt, it hurt them. Once we doctored up the trap, we caught three huge raccoons and sent them to raccoon heaven. When you relocate them, I think they beat you back to your house. :)

      • I think that most states require that a professional handles the capture of racoons. They carry a lot of diseases! It is even illegal to transport them over water! I knew a guy that was in the business! He said that there are very specific laws of how to handle them.

        • See my post here:
          http://practical-parsimony.blogspot.com/2012/06/raccoon-attack-midday.html#comment-form

          You only need foil in the trap to get a raccon. Never try to scare a raccoon you hope to catch. Learn the signs of a raccoon, rambling and digging.

          Read the post and the comments where I help a woman catch lots of raccoons. Contact me in any of the posts about raccoons if you have a question.

          • worrisome says:

            Thanks for the tip PP, I have lots of ideas now. Last night the lil devil actually tipped over a smaller trash can and rolled it around on the deck. Had I not specifically known that it was upright and locked by its wire handle last night, I would blame the dogs. So tonight it will be a tiny bit of tuna, some fruit on a piece of shiny aluminum foil far back in the trap and covered. We will see if I succeed.

      • New prepper says:

        What is she using for bait..How is trap being set, looking for info on how to successfully. we have been trying to catch one for awhile.. no luck. It is getting in our duck eggs, so far no lost ducks.

      • How to take care of racoons in a caring, loving manner. Something I learned from my mother years ago.

        1. Get trap
        2. Catch racoons in trap
        3. Fill up a tub full of water (at least more in height than that of your trap)
        4. Give racoons scuba lessons
        5. Give racoons scuba equipment

        Ooooohhhh… I just figured out why my racoons have such a high failure rate on the scuba lessons… You gotta fill up the tub of water before catching the racoons. :p

    • If you trap them and relocate them here in CA, make sure you DO not get caught. Big fine! Sorry the only solution is to take them out once you catch them, oh, darn with all the new laws not sure if you can legally take them out now. Thought I should let you know.
      Guess if you can beat them, serve them for dinner:-)

      • worrisome says:

        I am going to just say this…………found a friend with a bigger trap than the one I have. I am going to trap the raccoon. Not going to say what i will do with it :_) But yes, thanks for reminding me that there is a way to break the law for EVERYTHING in Cali. Sigh….

        • worrisome;
          You could claim it as “road kill”.
          Since everything is illegal in the State of” NO” you can not do that, or have that……
          Good luck

      • Petticoat Prepper says:

        Well, knowing my DS she didn’t ask and just did it. So far none have found their way home. I think she relo’d them over an hour away near a lake.

        • here in minnesota we skin em and sell the hide average auction price this year was 58.00 each and you get to keep the meat.

      • JeffintheWest says:

        I’m in Cali too — classic police state mentality here. If they make everything illegal, then they can arrest you any time they want for no particular reason at all. So if you PO the authorities by expressing your opinions, expect them at your door over some trivial nonsense you didn’t even know was regulated. But what can you expect from a state that consistently elects Feinstein and Pelosi to represent them nationally? I’m just hoping that eventually reality will rear its ugly head around here and people will wake up and realize how badly they’ve destroyed what used to be a paradise and vote them out of office. It’s just too bad by Significant Other insists on living here vice one of the “T” states!

        • JeffintheWest;
          I know what is wrong with our state. As I was walking into “wally world”, I saw the problem. It was walking road kill, it had it’s head down clicking on a little piece of plastic. It never looked up, never saw me coming at it, could have run it over with the basket(extra points for me) and still it would have kept on clicking that piece of plastic.
          No, it was not a teenager it was a women who’s husband walked off left her with her phone. As I walked by her I spoke so she could her me. “People who text and do not pay attention get run over”. No response never missed a bit on the key board. Dead to the world around her, and I see it all the time in the different establishments I shop at.

        • axelsteve says:

          I live in n komradfornia and my idiot inlaw had to go to Nevada once to get rid of a Ferret.

    • Use a snare. The dispatch em and make a hat.

    • mountain lady says:

      You do know that raccoon is also known as “the other white meat”. Just in case you need to know this in the future.

      • Rider of Rohan says:

        “Kill ‘em, skin ‘em, and eat ‘em, that’s the only way to rid yourself of them cause they are a pretty smart critter.”

        Worrisome, that’s what my grandpa used to say about raccoons. I figure he had it right as he raised a bunch of chickens in his time on this earth.

    • We have had yearly outbreaks of rabies in raccoons in my county (plus several other counties) for the last few years. You may want to try moving the dog food/garbage can into the garage.

    • Sw't Tater says:

      put in cookpot. pressure cook with two apples cut in half. be sure to remove all musk glands around neck and underarms, they are in the fat which you want to remove.

  12. Repair Mama says:

    Hey, Good Morning every one! Went out today to go to work and SPRING IS IN THE AIR!! God made a beautiful day!
    I also have the planting bug like you MD.
    According to my calender, below ground crops were to be planted before the 11th of this month, so on the 10th, I started seeds in the house for beets, radishes, and carrots. As of yesterday the radishes are 2.5″ tall! (5 days???) and the beets are breaking the potting soil! Amazing.
    According to the same calender, above ground crops from the 11th to the end of the month, so after granddaughter goes home later tonight, I will plant the seeds for the other things that I have to plant. I wonder if they will sprout and break the dirt as fast as the other ones did! I also started some sunflowers at the shop this morning.

    As for food storage, that has been going slow. I did put popcorn in jars and food savered them for the shelf, and we ate a quart of canned beef I canned in the fall of 2011. it was yummy with brown gravy and noodles from the pantry.
    I need to clean out mothers closet in her old room and shelf it out. I want to put some longer term (intermediate) food storage in there in a way that it can be rotated easier. my system is no system at all and I found a flat of canned tomatoes that are past the best by date in the back of a kitchen cabinet. I really need to get onto this. I also need to find more ways to eat the canned chicken that I canned too.
    It is boneless, skinless chicken breast. It is hard to cook for DH from storage because he would stave before I could get him to eat rice or oatmeal!
    And last, I am planning to make a quilt for the grand babies for this winter. that is 4 for the younger ones that are local. 3 boys and 1 girl all under 3 yrs old. I am also planning to cut up my dh’s old worn out denim jeans to make a larger quilt for us. I will embroider each block and then put it together. Quilting that baby by hand will be a hoot. I may have to tie tack some of it too. Warm blankets and quilts for the winter will be nice and may be necessary prep?!?

    I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend and I look forward to reading everyones posts like I do every weekend, even if I dont post, I always lurk!
    chat at ya’all later

    • riverrider says:

      when i was a kid we got thru a lot of hard times under that old quilt my great grandma made by hand. a prep indeed.

    • Petticoat Prepper says:

      I have a chicken receipe for you to try:

      1 pint jar of canned chicken (cook 10 mintues of the required 15)
      then add:
      1 pint jar roasted (or not) diced tomatoes, juice included
      1 pint jar green beans, drained
      1 pint jar cannellini beans (white kidney)
      1 clove minced garlic
      a bit of procuttio if you’ve got it, bacon would be nice too…or omit this
      1/4 C of wine, your choice
      salt and pepper to taste
      1/2 teaspoon each orgeano and basil

      Cook until hot about 10 minutes, then add 1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 1 tablespoon water to tighten sauce. Cook a couple minutes while stirring. Serve in a big bowl with garlic bread.

      Garlic bread: Slice and toast crusty style bread, once toasted rub a raw clove of fresh garlic over bread and then drizzle with olive oil.

    • Encourager says:

      Repair Mama, the denim quilt is a great idea. Good luck quilting through it! I ended up just tying the one I made my son. It was so heavy I did not use batting in it and used fleece on the back. He said it was so heavy it literally flattened him out in his bed. He said every night at college when he got into bed it made him think of me (awwww….brought a tear to me eye!)

      Careful using the knee areas…they are deformed from bending and will never lay flat. Good Luck!

    • JeffintheWest says:

      Well, the “good news” (if there is any in adversity) is that if your DH gets hungry enough, he’ll eat the paste from wallpaper, or the dirt where some molasses spilled (both actually happened in Leningrad during the siege in WWII), so if he gets hungry enough, he’ll eat rice and oatmeal both! So don’t worry too much about that aspect of it. Quilting is a great idea — I have managed to do without too much heat over the past five years, just because I had a down-filled quilt on my bed. They make the absolute BEST blankets in the world!

    • Idea #1
      In one pan cook egg noodles or linguine pasta.
      In another pan heat the chicken, add a can of cream of chicken soup or mix up a package of chicken gravy. Cook it ’til it’s thick. You can toss in a shredded carrot, a handful of fresh or frozen peas, a little broccoli or finely diced zucchini. Add whatever your hubby likes.
      Either serve the meat and gravy over the noodles or mix it all up.
      Idea #2
      You can use above the meat, gravy and vegetable mix in a pie shell or pour them in a baking dish and cover it with mashed potatoes like a shepherds pie.
      Idea #3
      Use it with tortillas in quesadillas or enchiladas.
      Idea #4
      Chop it up, mix in mayonnaise and some finely diced celery for sandwiches.

    • Sw't Tater says:

      Make deserts out of both the rice and oatmeal.. Enjoy those quilts, I am wanting to make some of my own, maybe by winter I will have room to work on one.

    • Repair Mama,

      My dh hated oatmeal. He ate it six days a week for breakfast growing up. I made it with apple sauce, apple juice, raisins, brown sugar and cinnamon and now he eats it.

    • Schametti says:

      Before I started prepping, (less than a year ago, I’m new, hehe), I bought a king sized custom quilt for my bed, and a king sized custom quilt for my guest room bed). I lack the skill to do them myself, but they are some of the best purchases I have EVER made, they’re so lovely, so warm, and I just love them. They’re not denim, just cotton and minky, (omg I love minky, lol), but I LOVE quilts. Good luck with yours Mama.

    • Divergal (S Fla) says:

      Im working on t-shirt quilts for my 2 nephews who graduate from high school this year. One is tshirts from my nephews favorite classic rock bands and the other is fave sports teams. Figure since they are Florida boys going to college up North they will need something to keep them warm, and these were surprisingly easy to make.

      DG

  13. MENTALMATT says:

    What up pack! Broadcasting today from the first major city to have an Emergency Financial Manager…. Later on todays broadcast the first major city to go Bankrupt…

    Anyhow bought another three month supply of food from E foods direct, so far I’ve never had a problem with them, I also plan on getting some silver this week, and maybe a tiny amount of gold, as I see it this market rally will not last long. I hedged my bets and purchased some canadian currency that I put away with all of the other goodies… Stay frosty pack..God Bless

    • riverrider says:

      congrats on another week! stay low.

    • Encourager says:

      Whew, Matt! Haven’t heard from you in a long while. What is the talk about cutting back on fire/LEOs? What a mess the big D is in. I am praying the EFM will make a positive turn-around for the city. Blessings to you and be safe!

    • Rider of Rohan says:

      Good job, MATT, good to see you still have your hair, as we used to say. Good luck on the silver as I couldn’t find one single 2013 Silver Eagle for my grandson’s birthday. I’ve been giving him one every year, and this is the first year I can’t get one. Yet. I’ll find one, though.

      • MENTALMATT says:

        Thanx everyone, Rider of Rohan, try coin rare.com, is the Westminister mint, they have them in stock.

      • riverrider says:

        ror, montana rarities. tell him riverrider sent you, he’ll charge double, lol!

  14. Lauri no e says:

    Good Day Everyone!

    Mama J, I hope your dd is better. Enc, thank you, for sharing those scriptures in a post on Friday and hope you are feeling better.

    On to preps, I usually go to Sams once or twice a year, I have been to Sams twice this week and Walmart once.

    1 Box of packets of Mayonnaise
    1 Multi Function Tool
    4 O2Cool Necklace Fans
    2 3 wick candles
    1 Box of Instant Bulbs Lights has 2 Bulbs to a box
    Stocked up on some more can goods fruit, meat and vegetables.
    Vitamins

    Love the pack and again many many thanks to all you helping my family and I to prep these last few months. I will be praying for all, so much sickness and job losses and decisions to make.

    • Schametti says:

      I didn’t even think about prepping boxes of PACKETS of condiments.. Hmmm, this seems very smart to me. What’s the shelf life on a bottle of mayonaise vs a packet of mayonaise I wonder? Thanks for the idea. Instead of bottles I might have to get me some packets next time I head to Sam’s. (Hubby has limited me to one prepping trip a month now, since I TEND to get a little carried away when I’m in there), lol.

  15. Tactical G-Ma says:

    Hey Pack,
    It appears everyone has spring fever. Is now in the 70’s so it is time.

    Did no preps this week. I picked up a bug the first of the wk. Then everything else has been normal living except a quick trip to Sams for restock.

    DH is still doing good. More test and more specialists during the next 3 wks.

    God bless and keep prepping.

    • TGM, 70’s? Like I wish, it’s -20 and snowing up here in Frostbite Falls Minnesota. Of course it’s always -20 and snowing in Frostbite Falls Minnesota, ya know?

    • axelsteve says:

      Gma I have been praying about your hubby.

  16. Rider of Rohan says:

    After reading one of JP in Montana’s posts I was inspired to buy more food. I ordered 2 buckets of Mountain House freeze-dried food, 1 case of Red Feather butter, 1 case of Red Feather cheese, and various cases of green beans, corn, tuna, salmon, spam, canned chicken, and a case of coffee. I spent over $500.00, and my wife is mad. She will get over it, and be glad I did one day.

    I’ve been researching property to buy, and have saved a little over $4000 as a down payment if we can find the right thing. I would appreciate the Pack’s prayers on this and one other matter. My MIL fell yesterday, and broke her hip. I just covet your prayers on this. Thank you.

    • worrisome says:

      Absolutely! Added to the prayer list!

    • riverrider says:

      prayers sent…..have you looked in east tenn? hancock county, sneedville.cheap land. no jobs though.good people. we’re checking it out.

      • Rider of Rohan says:

        Tennessee would be a great place, river, but I have a son who lives in Shawnee, Ok., and I’m leaning toward that area, maybe south of there near Talihina. Or maybe west Arkansas south of Ft. Smith in the Ouachita Mountains(Mena area). Thanks for the tip.

      • Riverrider,

        I am looking for land too! My husband wants to go to TN.(Personally I think it is too cold but he is luring me with the thoughts of building a log cabin.) I am going to check out land in Hancock county this evening!

        We own our own business so we don’t need jobs.

        • riverrider says:

          kate, youtube it. and try landwatch.com

        • Kate, I don’t know what part of the volunteer state you may be considering but the Cumberland plateau is nice. It does experience winter and does get snow. My father retired to the Cumberland plateau and loved it. I recall that he did lose power on occasion due to ice and snow storms some times lasting 3 weeks or more. Luckily he had backup heating and lighting and did just fine. Middle TN had a fairly easy winter this year and I only saw one time where we had a dusting of snow that lasted a few hours on the ground. TN has no personal income tax, experiences all four seasons, great people live here, good gun laws and a good quality of life makes it a win win in my book. We have lived all over the country and came back to TN 6 years ago and will remain here. M.D.’s part of the country has some nice locations nearby as well. Just my .02 cents worth but I’m partial to Tennessee and her citizens who love their families, country, Bible and firearms.

        • I live in north Knoxville in a little neighborhood. I have been looking at Craigslist and there are some great buys within an hour west of downtown.

          One of my neighbors just threw a loud party and there were cars and groups of (non-descript) men in front of my house until two am when a policeman sent them a literally running. So I think I am done with this neighborhood.

          Otherwise the area and Knoxville great! The city is emerging from the recession so some jobs are popping up. Lots of things to do and great people but I may be partial :-).

          Anyway if you have questions about any particular area around let me know and I can fill you in.

    • Encourager says:

      RoR, praying for your MIL for complete healing. And that God will lead you to the perfect property for your family (I just got a flash picture of rolling hills with two nice outbuildings on it – one a small barn).

    • JeffintheWest says:

      Praying for you all. I hope your MIL is doing better today.

      I know how tough the search for property can be. ;-) But hang in there; you’ll find the right thing for you.

    • Copperhead says:

      Prayers for your MIL and you. Hope she heals quickly and you find the property you want.

  17. Petticoat Prepper says:

    Good morning MD and Pack!

    Like most of us I am always looking forward to seeing what everyone has done!

    Jobs have been picking up for me the past few weeks (old shop closed and I’m getting some of their dogs). This is good for the ‘kitty’ but bad for prepping as I’ve no time to get to the store.

    I got time in the greenhouse this week and started my veggie garden. The neighbor took down here bamboo last year so I’m getting good sunlight there again. I hope she keeps at the bamboo so it doesn’t come back. It’s a running type and while pretty to look at is just a pain to deal with.

    I did manage to pick up 3 more hive kits, these are unassembled. I also have all the parts now to build my ‘bee vaccumn’. Yesterday hive inspection shows the girls are busy and happy. The queen is laying and so far all is well. Looking forward to my new bees arriving the first part of April.

    I did a big batch of beef jerky this week. DH is eating it almost as fast as I can turn it out. DD and her BF have been into it too. I also managed to dry more blood oranges and lemons. I also discoved an ‘old fashion’ made with blood oranges and Big Bottom Burbon…my bad.

    The soap I made with Bam Bam’s article is finally through with the waiting/drying part and we tried it this week. My DH is in love with it. Wants me to do more with smells in it this time. I didn’t scent the first batch as I wasn’t sure I’d be able to turn it out. Not to worry Bam Bam gave great instruction.

    Recieved the first box of 2 boxes from Shepherd’s Supply this week. I am grateful for the gift of long term meat. Again, thanks to all for the votes. The second box contains an item that breaks your car window should you need to exit and can’t. I’ve always feared finding myself in the water and trapped in the car. As a kid my friends brother died in his car after swerving into an irrigation ditch. I order two, one for us and one for DD.

    Last night, DH said if the ecconomy picks up enough that we could sell our house, he’d like to and move to my land! This is a first as he’s always been opposed to living there. So while I’m thinking 3 years he seems to be thinking sooner. Well, maybe…. It would be nice.

    I began to think about a GHB for my family reunion this summer. I wonder if my DH would think me odd for packing a bag to check that’s just a GHB? I’ve been pretty vocal on only doing a carry on so we don’t have to wait around or pay for an additional bag. However, after thinking about the sheer distance from home, I’m starting to get a bit paranoid.

    The last thing for the week was that using MD’s link to amazon, I bought the book ‘Survival guide to Obamacare’.

    Hope all have a great week and I’m looking forward to reading the remaining comments as they come!

    • riverrider says:

      mail it out there and mail it back when you leave?

      • JeffintheWest says:

        That’s a really good idea — especially given the propensity for the TSA to steal things from checked baggage, and there’s nothing like survival gear to tempt them.

    • Petticoat Prepper,

      I am glad your soap turned out. My dh likes the soap so much that he has volunteered to be my assistant soap maker. (He plays on his computer at the kitchen table until it’s time to do dishes. LOL) I have found that keeping trash bags full of ice allows me to make a half dozen batches at a time, each with a different scent.

      • SCPrepperPoppa says:

        Bam Bam,
        Would you kindly repost your salve recipe. I didn’t get it copied the last time because it was when MD had the bad computer stuff happen thank! I appreciate all your knowledge!
        SCPP

        • SC PrepperPoppa,

          You take a half pint canning jar and fill it up with oil (mostly olive oil–you can add other oils like avocado oil or grape seed oil or coconut oil). Add a heaping tablespoon of beeswax. Milt in micro–about a minute and 15 seconds. (Put a plate under the jar so it’s easy to get out of the micro when hot.) Add the essential oil of your choice.

          I keep tea tree/peppermint around for itching skin. This works wonders. I have a niece and a nephew who would get Excema really bad.I gave my brother a jar of this stuff. No more Excema. My mom has had trouble with Shingles. This stuff stopped the itching.

          My usual is lavender. I am using ylang-ylang right now but I think I will switch back to lavender when I finish up this jar.

          • SCPrepperPoppa says:

            Many thanks Bam-Bam!
            Got it printed this time round. Our 5 year old grand-daughter has excema and we will surely try this on her. She loves to help her poppa make “stuff”! Many Blessings to you and yours!

  18. Petticoat Prepper says:

    Note to MD,

    After clicking on the submit button I was redirected to ‘Sex Scandals’. This is the fourth time in the past month this has happened. So you’ve got something going on in the back ground. Just FYI not complaining.

    • Jim in SoCal says:

      I got the same re-direct this morning when I clicked my TSB “Favorite” button.

      • gray hawk says:

        I got the same re-direct . rebooted computer and back to normal.

        • Petticoat Prepper says:

          Yes, if I just close my browser and come back it’s fine. My thought was that there was something floating around in the code maybe?

          • Don’t mean to be a busy body, but I don’t think that Creedmore is a real Doctor. If he was, he would know that the M.D. part goes after his name, not before. Just say’n.

            • The “M.D.” is his initials. We often skip the periods between the initals.

              • Sorry, I should have written (sarcasm) after my post.

                • Shades of Green says:

                  Is there a reason you are even bothering to post here Ghost if all you have to say is sarcastic? You just pop in and say some of the stupidist things. Is your life so unintersting that you just feel the need to annoy people or be a jerk to have something to talk about? If so, then I truly feel sorry for you and hope you can find something else to fill your time that will make you a productive part of society rather than one of the stupid idiots that will most assuredly get themselves SHOT when TSHTF. Just wondering.

    • Happened to me a few times also.

    • Backwoods Prepper says:

      Soon as I clicked on it at 4:00 it took me to the sex scandal website. using my favorites butto.

    • I got redirected to Sex Scandals just clicking on the link from my email this morning.

      • Hey, I’ve never been directed to sex scandals. Are there photos of Obama and his Secret Service?

      • Cheyenne says:

        Yesterday I clicked on this site from my emails and was redirected to the Sex Scandal site also. No problem today though.

      • Shades of Green says:

        I’ve never been directed there either. Maybe it is the security that the others have on their computers.

  19. Spent a considerable amount at the oral surgeon this week. But won’t have to worry about that tooth ever again. Probably one of the most painful removals I have ever had but all is good. Counted this as a big prep.

  20. Jim in SoCal says:

    Good morning Pack!

    First of all, I would like to give thanks to the Almighty for giving me and mine another week here on Earth. We are truly blessed, and I am humbled by His grace.

    This week I was able to finally get some primers for reloading, …but no powder still! The wait continues.

    After two weeks of workouts I have dropped 10lbs. I hope to be at goal weight by 7/20, as that coincides with my 10 year anniversary of quitting smoking. Feeling better already!

    Added to our water reserves and continued to tweak the rain catchment system. Added a new filter to catch the junk prior to ut entering the stream.

    My St. Bernard/Shepard mix has responded well to his treatment, and has even been seen troting around the backyard. That hasn’t happened in a while! That prompted me to get out there with him and that’s when I found that a large section of wood fencing was about to crumble. That will be today’s project!

    DW found some good deals on canned soup and pasta sauce. We are now stocked for one yaer on those items! Feeling better about food preps lately. The garden is going great, and a trip to the Farmer’s Market found some beautiful carrots that we will can tomorrow.

    That’s it for this week. Stay safe everyone!

    • Petticoat Prepper says:

      Congrats on the 10 lbs!!!!!

    • riverrider says:

      are you familiar with “first flush” setup on the catchment? saves a lot of stuff getting in.

      • Jim in SoCal says:

        RR,
        I have a 1st flush built in, but I wanted a “pre-filter” coming off the roof. A bit more maintenance, but I’m happy with it.

    • congrats on the 10 years!!!! way to go.

      • Jim in SoCal says:

        Thanks gil! I am SOOOO glad I quit when I did. two pack a day smoker and went cold turkey. Have not missed it since.

    • Schametti says:

      Ten years and ten pounds. Ten must be your lucky number. :) May it keep increasing! I’ve lost forty three pounds in the last year, but I’ve come to the plateau point where if I don’t start working out, nothing else will be coming off. Ugh, I HATE working out, lol.. :( A long way to go for me too. At least we’re in good company. Good Luck, Jim.

  21. Hello Pack;
    Had the DN boyfriend help replace fencing that the cows had used for a back scratchiers(actually their back end). Picked up more coffee on sale with a coupon:-), yes oh, boy. Picked up corned beef on sale to go into the freezer for the coming year.
    Now I have a request from the “Pack”, someone had a link for fish antibiotics and I did not link it to my favorites I have been going back over all the recent blogs, and I can not locate it. If you have it, please direct me to the correct spot, thanks.
    Went to the 99 cent store looking for Campbell’s Pork and Beans for DH, they had none on the shelf. Odd since this is a normal staple on their shelves. Dollar store picked up small garbage bags, shoe laces, paper tape, hard bar bath soap,emergency repair kit for teeth. Trying to put little things aside for the “just in case”. Went to Jo Ann fabrics here, they are moving to a new building so I picked up thread, snaps, buttons, odds and ends that are expensive but marked down for their move.
    Reading books with additional knowledge, I might know, thought I knew, and guess what I did not know that! Time for a nap the brain is over loaded.

    • Ozarkana says:

      Hi Becky,
      I use Calvet.com. I have never had a problem with anything that I have bought from them. I have researched their antibiotics in my Merck Manual; and, they are all “fine for my fishes”. They have really good prices on their first aid type bandages, gauze, and tape, as well.

    • Petticoat Prepper says:

      Geeze, Becky I’ve tried twice to post the link you’re looking for not sure why it’s not going through.

      calvetsupply dot com

      MD if this isn’t an ok thing to post up then sorry and I understand. Not trying to step on advertiser toes!

      • Ozarkana & Petticoat Prepper;
        Thank you ever so much for the info!!!
        Now I can get my supplies on order. Thought I was going to lose my mind when I was unable to find the link.
        Hope you have a great weekend.

    • Schametti says:

      Someone just posted this one this week too, I’m excited to research and buy some for the pantry. :)

      http://aquaticpharmacy.com/eshop

  22. Well, the old Ford “Exploder” kept to its namesake again–muffler, pipes, flanges, blowed up; all ka-put! Had to get the beast back in shape, lest I get a ticket from the local gendarmes and/or gas myself with exhaust fumes. Prep budget behind the 8 ball this week.

    Had to take our little lady, “Elsie,” our 17 year old Beagle-Basset to the vet for an on-going check. She’s got a tumor on her jaw and one on her innards. We took her to a vet “specialist” (we’re lucky to have a few in the state as well as those at the state vet school. They wanted to 100% remove her jaw and “explore” her innards with zero prognosis for any success in either. Bad odds. Praise God the jaw tumor hasn’t progressed much at all. Looks like palliative care for the old girl, who, by God’s grace, is still pretty active.

    Had some real good advice from a vet friend: “Keep Elsie pain-free and comfortable; SHE doesn’t know anything about cancer. Just love her to pieces like you always do. You’ll know when it’s time.”

    I keep thinking about Ecclesiastes 3. God is so merciful and kind.

    • JeffintheWest says:

      That’s really tough. I went through that with a beloved Labrador. Her cancer was quick though, which may have been a blessing since she didn’t have time to feel much pain, but she was so terrified by it. She kept looking at me and you could SEE her asking me to fix it. First and only time I ever cried as an adult. She had to be put to sleep. I held her while she slipped away. Maybe that comforted her a little bit. I still miss her terribly, and that was many years ago now.

      • Encourager says:

        Jeffinthewest, been there done that. Our beloved lab Muffi developed a rare breast cancer. We took her to a Vet School and they biopsied it after removal. Then they asked permission to send it to facilities all over the US and Canada for research. We said yes. Unfortunately, the cancer returned and then spread to her brain. This lab gave birth to 13 pups a few years before this and never whimpered once during labor and delivery. But when cancer hit her brain, she would come over with tear-filled eyes and rest her head in my lap and just moan. We had her put to sleep, the vet came out to our place, helped dig her grave, and put her down. He cried along with us and helped bury her. I still miss her and that was 25 years ago.

        • Schametti says:

          omg you guys, I am so sorry for all your hard experiences. I have two boys who are my whole world right now. They’re young and healthy right now, but I’m sure that won’t always be the case. I hope to never have such heartache with me. *Hugs All Around for Your Losses* :(

  23. OregonMike says:

    Good Morning Pack
    Another good week. Planted 9 fruit trees, 80 Walla Walla’s, and peas.
    Built a chicken nursery for the new ones and dehydrated another batch of scrambled eggs. Purchased 15 more berry bushes and erected and planted 10 potato towers. Planted 4 raspberry (separate from the new ones), 1 blueberry and 1 grape plant. Put up an herb greenhouse on the deck, bought 5 barrels for container corn on the deck (along with the soil). and last but not least, shot a rifle match where DW shot her first perfect score! Going to build a large crank so I can speed up Spring coming to my place. ;->

    • Missy Taz says:

      Hey Mike! You were indeed busy! Thanks for mentioning container corn! I’m going to give it a shot this year!

    • how go you dehydrate eggs

      • OregonMike says:

        Hi Loren,
        Use fruit leather trays for your dehydrator. scramble up a dozen,2 or three, eggs and whip or scramble. Pour onto your fruit leather trays just enough so they do not flow over. It takes 8 to 9 hours to dry. Then empty the trays into a gallon Zip bag, squeeze out the air and use a rolling pin to crush the dried eggs into a course powder. Pour into a jar or mylar bag. To rehydrate or use in baking, 1 tablespoon of egg to 1 tablespoon of hot water equals one egg. You can get 48 eggs into a quart jar.
        Good luck and save those extra eggs by dehydrating.
        Mike

        • WYO RYder says:

          OR….you can scramble the eggs first and then dehydrate them. Do not add anything to the eggs, nor spray the pan with any fats (I use a Green+Life ceramic non-stick frying pan). Takes about 6-8 hours to dry.

          Also, I keep my chicken’s eggs in the fridge for up to 3 months by not washing off the protective ‘bloom’.

          • WYO RYder says:

            whoops, Mike said scramble. I mis-read. :-(
            Some people dehydrate eggs raw but i think that is asking for salmonella.

            • OregonMike says:

              WYO,
              I don’t cook them first. I just meant mix the yolk and whites before pouring into the trays. However it’s done, it’s bound to give you an extra option if your chickens are out producing your consumption. Also, much cheaper than purchasing pre packaged dehydrated eggs. Sorry I wasn’t clear.

        • Sw't Tater says:

          If you cook them before dehydration, be sure to not use any oil.use a non stick skillet..when you take them out of dehydrator, put them in a blender or food processor, process until like cornmeal..can store more in a container and easier to measure..can put on any dehydrator tray…. same directions as above. My family prefers I use them for cooking.. to use in cooking, just put them in dry and add the extra water to recipe, allow to sit a few min.. works real well in pancake mix. Some ppl advocate separating the white and yolk, and not cooking, must use the butter tray in the dehydrator ..to do it this way. Dehydrator at 140 degrees does do a slow cook, but this method not for me

        • JeffintheWest says:

          That’s brilliant — thanks for the share!

          • A good solution for extra eggs is to freeze them. My mother would crack the eggs into a measuring cup and then pour one at a time into an ice cube tray. Once they are frozen you can pop them out and put them in a freezer bag. Use as you would normally.

            If you are lucky enough to have ducks – their eggs have alot more volumn so an ice cube tray won’t be deep enough for them. You can use other freezer containers for them.

  24. JeffintheWest says:

    M.D. — Love what you did with the rocks around the base of your chicken hotel there (it’s really a bit more than the typical coop). Bet that makes it a LOT harder for wandering varmints (especially feral dogs and cats) to get at your feathered friends!

    • FarmerKin says:

      I was thinking the same thing. I’ve always left extra chicken wire at the bottom and buried it to deter tunneling, but the rock idea is an extra barrier … plus it looks nice.

    • I attached some chain link fencing to the lower board of my coop and stretched it out away from the coop about three foot. Used the front end loader to dig up that area and burried the fence. Whatever hits it will quit digging as it wont fell so good on their paws.

  25. Hello Pack! So happy to report my DH has recovered from that awful respiratory illness he has had for more than a week. I know he is fully recovered because he took off on his bike yesterday and rode about a 100 miles. Bad news to that I was at work, and my bike sat idol.

    Hubby went crazy planting seeds this week. The corn has sprouted waiting to see what else comes up.

    Potted up all the bedding plants I purchased last week. The strawberry plants are loaded with blooms and a few strawberries. The are all snuggled in the greenhouse.

    Turned mama hen and babies out to free range today that was fun to watch.

    Pecan trees should be here Monday, blue berry bushes won’t be here till the end of April.

    Prayers to M.D. and the pack for good health and safe travels.

  26. PGCPrepper says:

    Hope this works as I dropped my Mac Book and it’s in the shop. Sarah Paling drinking a 32 oz Big Gulp at CPAC mocking Nanny Bloomberg. Hahahahahahahaha

    https://twitter.com/HeadsWillRoel/status/312967176837554178/photo/1

  27. Hunker-Down says:

    We placed our garden seed order this week. I know, I know, all you boiled peanut eaters have finished your planting and are watching your plants grow. Meanwhile, we still have a 3-4 foot ridge of snow around the driveway, from the snow-blower work. As I write this, the low for tonight is +4.

    We ordered 10 different heirloom seed varieties, most from RareSeeds.com. We were able to save only 4 heirloom varieties of seed from last year’s garden. Our goal is to go into 2014 with a large supply of 14 heirloom varieties but I doubt it if we will save any carrot seeds. Reaching that goal means we will not need to purchase seeds in the future as the 14 is all we care to grow. Each year we would like to save enough for 3 years of gardening, which would give us seeds following a bad year of not having a garden. Having a supply larger than 3 years would make excellent barter items.

    We have two 25 foot trees to cut down to get more sunshine into the garden so I ordered a 1 man crosscut saw from TraditionalWoodworker.com. It doesn’t need gasoline and I won’t need a gymnasium membership. If/when TSHTF happens we have four 70 foot pines that will get cut down in order to double the garden space.

    We made our first batch of homemade dishwasher powder. It is doing well, the glasses are clear. I don’t know if its our terrific Wisconsin water or the recipe.

    I hope we can push our politicians into givings us a free, peaceful society but that seems to be more remote as time goes by.

    Although I don’t respond to many posts, I read most and pray for everyone in need.

    • Rider of Rohan says:

      +4=ugh. As for peanuts, boiled, parched or raw, I love them all. The weather is sure perfect for planting(70 +), but I don’t have the location. I’m working on it though, but I don’t think all that snow you’re talking about appeals to me, though I do like a bit of the white stuff every year. How else would one make snow ice cream without some snow? You’ve been a busy man, Hunker Down.

    • H-D,

      I thought of you when I was at the dollar store today–they had cans of boiled peanuts. Nothing says Easter like Peeps and boiled peanuts. :)

      • My Bronx ancestry will not allow me to eat boiled peanuts! The sound of it it disgusting! The smell is even worse!

        I may live in the south and be married to someone from the south, but there are some things I just can not bring myself to do. :)

  28. Got rid of win7 and am using ubuntu. This Linux based OS is pretty user friendly.
    Garden is moving right along.
    Added some canned goods.
    The tubing benders for work I ordered came in on Thursday. I love getting new tools.
    Praying for the leaders of the world to make good decisions. Nothing is beyond repair. They need to work together and do whats right, May God help them in their works. May we help them by working hard and doing whats best at all times.
    Have a great week pack.

  29. Encourager says:

    Very frustrating week with absolutely no prepping other than rearranging the storage room a bit. STILL have this horrible virus!!!! Day 19 and counting. DH is quite sick with it also. We both have cabin fever. Sat out on the deck in the cold because the sun was shining, a few times this past week. It helped the cabin fever and we got a laugh watching the silly chickadees. Had a flock of robins in the yard yesterday, but still no redwing blackbirds.

    Today is the one year anniversary of a bad tornado that took out part of a small village about an hour away from us. When I told my dh, he said, no way – the trees were completely leafed out when that happened. Yep, and the temperature was in the 80’s. Woke up this morning to two inches of fresh snow with ice underneath. Hopefully, spring will behave this year and not be like last year where in April we had 3 killing frosts that took care of just about all the fruit tree buds in Michigan.

    Our son went grocery shopping for us as we were out of fresh stuff like milk, eggs and bread. I could make bread, but no energy. Praying his quick in and out did not expose him to this bug. If I am still this bad come Monday, will break down and go to the doctor. I am sick and tired of being sick and tired!

    • Copperhead says:

      Encourager, prayers for you and hubby! I have a friend that has been battling this virus, too. It has lasted a long time but hopefully soon, you all will be feeling better. Taking care of your health is a big prep!

      • Encourager says:

        Thank you Copperhead. I am actually feeling better yesterday late and today. Now I must guard against doing too much…the dust elephants are racing each other across the floor. One actually scared the dog this morning – dh walked through the room creating a breeze, dog saw it coming and jumped straight up. I got the hint but it was pretty funny. Did the dusting, now will wait for a few hours before getting out the vacuum cleaner.

        Wish hubby felt better…he is about a week behind me with this bug. Thanks for the prayers! We need all we can get!!

  30. Encourager says:

    Oh, I forgot! M.D., love the trip wire! Where can we buy these? Watched the video but it didn’t say. Thanks!!

  31. Bagged and bucketed 200 pounds of wheat, some spices, 40 pounds of pancake mix, and 100 pounds of sugar. Did some cleaning on the storage area – we’ve had more mice than usual this winter and they are getting uppity in there.
    Saw the accountant for the tax returns. Hate that week of the year.
    Sorted out seeds to start some indoors this coming week.
    Bought a 2002 used Chevy 2500 diesel truck. Will be our towing vehicle and (after purchasing some spare parts) bug out vehicle. Need to get a gooseneck hitch in the bed and we’ll be good to go with it.
    Some foodstuffs purchased – mainly spices and sugars this week. Continued our never ending battle against the mice – found a new style of trap that seems to work nicely and is much more reusable than the old wood-style ones.
    Some cleanup of one bed of the garden. Hoping to get the burn pile that’s in the main garden burned this weekend if the rain lets us.
    Ordered some square bales for the equines.
    Did not find time at all to write the ebay article – it’s coming, I swear!
    Did not get around to filling water bottles – hopefully this coming week.
    Bought 14 pounds of bananas and dehydrated them. Did some more onions.
    Bought some junk silver.
    Oh, look. The government, which has previously been telling us not to worry about North Korea, now is worried about North Korea. Lovely. Watched my blood pressure go up from the above and the whole gun thing. Oh, and the “we don’t need to balance the budget in the next decade” crap. Don’t know about ya’ll, but us folks here in the real world have to live within our budgets – what makes the politicians different? Oh, wait, they don’t have the slightest clue about the real world… that’s why. (At this rate, I’ll be on blood pressure medicine before I’m 50!)
    Wow, this was actually more than I was expecting for this week – given that a large chunk of it was taken up with truck buying.

    • Harry the hat says:

      Had a problem with mice this year. They kept taking the bait and not setting off the trap. The local Tru-Value hardware store gave me a tip: tie a piece of string around the bait area. They will try and get all of the bait off of the string and trip the trap. Once I did this I caught 2 and that ended the mice problem!

    • Lauri no e says:

      Victoria S.

      The bug guy that takes care of our house told me in a prepper situation to get rid of mice because they have babies every two weeks you can do the following. Please watch your animals if you do this.

      Peanut Butter with glass in it (broken pieces of glass)
      Sorry to be so morbid.

      • Papabear says:

        Lauri no e,
        You can put out a jar lid with fresh coke (or any other carbinated drink) overnight. The rodents will come to drink then die. They cannot burp and the carbination does them in.

        • Papabear;
          Thank you for the soda pop tip, I have to discontinue the rodent/spray service.
          My kitties have discriminating tastes, kill, but no eat the toys. Sometimes that act like they are not suppose to go after them, it is the dogs job. Which she does quite well, better than I wish she would, if it runs she goes after it.

    • Sw't Tater says:

      I’d be sure to get in your magnesium and potassium to keep your blood pressure under control…not necessarily daily…as I take mine twice a week.

      • Bananas and avacados. No need for a pill.Taste better too.

        • Sw't Tater says:

          Can’t chew dehyd banana’s and can’t raise avacados here.but love both. sometimes break and put banana’s in oatmeal. I can’t eat enough of either to keep mine up, so I use No salt and generic rolaids…just me. The important thing is to have a way to get these into your body, even when you are sick, because these are depleted when illness strikes…like the bugs that have went around this winter. Both of these are critical to keep blood pressures under control.

      • SCPrepperPoppa says:

        Please tell me your brands and mgs. I have taken BP meds for 20 years, lost 40 lbs, still have hypertension! Also exercise and don’t smoke. Thanks!

        • Sw't Tater says:

          See above post..
          no-salt,.. This is a potassium salt replacer, it comes in several brands, just be sure it is all potassium, with no added enhancers. I start with one “serving” per package in citrus, tomato juice, or coffee.( salting the coffee with it, if you are preparing for one, works.) I wait three hours if still problem I’ll take another half the original amount… If you get too much your lips will feel like they are trying to pucker. If that happens, just drink more water. It doesn’t take long for that to pass. Change dose accordingly.
          Rolaids I use 2-4, once a day, evening or night, depeding on if I am having cramps. Look for this book.. “FOOD YOUR MIRACLE MEDICINE” by Jean Carper.. this author recommends.. fish oils/via fish selections 3 x week, garlic, and gives specific ways to prepare, can also make it into an extract..those are the ones I remember..

  32. PGCPrepper says:

    No preps again this week. Still laid up. I will offer that I actually had my Lowe’s card show a charge close to 2500.00. It was not our charge as we only use my USAA card. I had the Lowe’s card from way back when I rehabbed some properties but never canceled it until today. I haven’t used in in many years. The ironic part is the charges were at a Lowe’s store in Matthews, NC where my ‘X” was actually born and close to where I was born. Talked to the X but I obviously knew it was coincidental. My X is a good person and honest as they come plus she lives in DC. Very strange. Lowe’s is writing off the charge though and that is awesome but I still don’t like Jimmy Johnson. (NASCAR) LOL. Be careful our there folks. Thinking of joining Lifelock.

    Had a friend that passed unexpectedly. This is not a lesson that you do not know but enjoy each precious moment. I think that was my message last week too. God bless you all. Gary

  33. Did not add anything to my storage but like MD I have been doing some mighty thinking about my garden, not scientific type thinking but thinking and planning all the same. I just finished about 3 hours of working the soil and have one raised bed about ready to go. The second I plan on setting up in a couple of days and will have to get all my 5 gal buckets ready to go plus purchase a few more.

    I will order me a Food Saver next week, the first I have ever had. Hope it works out so I can try all the suggestions made by Bam Bam, Adrienne and others.

    That’s about it. Hope you all are well and happy.

    P.S. Don’t know about you all but this wild ride of the stock market lately makes me wonder if the CRASH isn’t just around the corner!

    • PGCPrepper says:

      I pulled all my money out. I remember how upset some friends were when the market crashed in March, 09. Some had to forgo retirement. The natural inclination would be that these folks might start liquidating now that their equity wealth is back to where it was. Maybe not but I do not trust what I see out there and I’ve made my living trading for the past seven years. Must add as disclaimer, as I posted last week, I’m not doing well so I also pulled all my trading cash out at EOM Dec so my wife won’t have to worry about a Schedule D (taxes) so I had other reasons and I’m not monitoring the market that closely now. Just food for thought. I have no idea what to do with the cash now though as I don’t trust banks and the ability of folks stealing your identity as I posted about my Lowe’s card above.

      • PGCP, sorry about your health issues and the identity theft.
        I do not trust the market either and that’s why I got out of it and 401Ks years ago. Banks aren’t any better but a credit union is a little better. My statement about the market lately is just that I expect a huge up swing in the market and then a sudden crash that could/would start a whole bunch of BAD balls a rolling. But take heart, I am certainly no financial expert.

    • LyndaKay says:

      The pressure on the stock market is always DOWN.

      • PGCPrepper;
        Sorry to hear it is not getting any better. I know now that you did not see my posting from the last time. If & when you feel better look up nurse Joyce Riley’s page. You might find answers to what is going on. I now am aware of the time frame you served in the military, we are hoping that there is something medically that can assist you in getting better. Our blessing/prayers are coming your way.

  34. Wild Weasel says:

    Not much here, partially collection and partially prep, picked up a m14, 5 mags and 450 rounds of .308 (package deal)at a great price, really great price! Two boxes of .40 and traded a 1911 for Gen4 Glock 27. Started moving some stuff around in the basement to allow more room for preps. Wife is getting more on board with prep needs. Attended a funeral for some friends of ours that lost a 5 day old infant. Brings you back to reality hoe precious life is. Hug your kids.

  35. KR Prepper says:

    Beans:          
    -harvested first set of onions
    -hand copied more recipes
    -read through whole larder love. 
    -read through self sustainability for the 21st century.
    -bought 4 water barrels for 20 bucks

    Bullets
    -read through massad ayoobs Combat Hand gunnery
    – talked to an old vet about hand to hand combat.
    -Borrowed Caesar Milan’s “Be the Pack Leader” wanting to learn how to train my dog 
    -Ordered 440 rounds 7.62×54 for my Mosin Nagant 

    Band aids
    -biked 11 miles
    -hand copied more of National Geographic Guide to medicinal herbs
    -bought and planted the following med herbs: basil, catnip, chamomile, echinacea, lavender, lemon balm, sage, Spearmint, 

    Transportation
    -hand copied Briggs and Stanton small engine repair book
    -Priced a used yamaha qt50 moped. with the deal comes a non-functioning Suzuki Fa-50. Ill restore it and up the engine to 125cc. 
    -cleaned off two other pedal bikes left in my basement.
    -Read the Urban Cyclist Handbook.
    -Priced a auto mech’s tool kit. 
    -put cargo basket on my main bike. 

    Shelter
    -went to harbor freight and priced engines and solar gear
    -picked up cordless drill. 
    -Built a shed with my old man on his lot.

  36. NotAHusker says:

    Got lucky at the big box sporting goods store with 2 325 ct .22 ammo. Now I can do some target shooting and not feel like i am wasting ammo.

    Started to change over my winter get home back pack in my car to the spring back pack when the news showed 2 inches of snow and ice for tomorrow night. Guess spring is farther away than I thought.

    The Nebraska legislature is in session for 90 days only this year, 60 days next year. We are the only unicameral (Senate only) legislature with 49 Senators so politics can get heated. I’ll be spending a lot of time ranting at the TV and computer.

  37. I added a a few things here and there. Peanut butter, coffee soup, spaghetti sauce, oil, a few canned vegies. As a newbie i feel and see some progress..good stuff.

    Last September I had my knee replaced after 15 years of arthritis and bone on bone… and This friday I slipped and fell with my knee and lower leg ending up under me. The store manager was a jerk but the soda delivery guy was a great help. I did end up making it to work but called my supervisor to send a replacement. Im pretty laid up for the weekend and Im hoping I can handle the job come Monday… i dunno im pretty miserable. Prayers appreciated!

    Lisa

    • Sheri (IN) says:

      Prayers to you Radmoo1. I hope you feel better soon. My son is 22 and just had his 3rd ACL reconstruction in 7 years. He’s very fit and athletic, but when the knees go none of that seems to matter. He is bone on bone in the right knee. I’ve never heard so much crunching in my life!

      Take care!

      • axelsteve says:

        Sheri I am sorry to hear about your son. 22 is to young for that kind of stuff.

        • Sheri (IN) says:

          Thank you Axelsteve. He doesn’t complain much. It’s more of a bad joke at this point. I’m stocking up on BioFlex. It seems to relieve some pain in the “bad” knee. He just had the left one done for a 2nd time in late January, but the right one has been the bad boy since he had it done at age 15.
          Both of my boys are on board with prepping and contribute quite a lot. They’ve done their own research and realize what is going on in today’s world is real. My youngest works out West in LA about 5 months out of the year. I told him if anything happens, leave your stuff, jump in the Jeep and head as far East as you can get. He’ll be home in a few weeks so I can worry a little less…for now :)

    • Copperhead says:

      Prayers for you, Radmoo1. I have had both knees replaced in the last 3 years, so understand your concern! Hope the pain eases up soon.

  38. Harry the hat says:

    Hello Pack,

    I finally made it to Ham Radio Outlet and purchased my radio. A Yaesu VX-6R dual band radio. Went to China mart and still no ammo for 9 or 40 or 45 or 556. Missed the gun show last weekend as I had a training session on Highway safety. Saw an add for 556 ammo 900 rounds for $799. I decided it was way to expensive!

    I am looking at what I have on hand and looking to add to my reserve food supply.

    God Bless and be aware of your surroundings and have a safe week.

    Harry

  39. ladyhawthorne says:

    Your garden is looking good so far MD. I am trying it again after several years of not. Today I am drilling drainage holes in rubbermaid containers and planting heirloom tomatoes and yellow bell peppers. They will be happy to get out of the window sill. Looks like we are into Spring as it is 80 degrees here today, just gorgeous!

    I read where I can use small water bottles (empty but sealed) in the bottom of the containers for drainage rather than rocks or pot shards, neither of which I have. That’s cool because I have a big sack full of empty water bottles from work.

    Sold some books and saint pendants I make in my Etsy store this week, YAY! Ebay has not been that good for me lately but I’ll list as long as it’s free.

    Haven’t added to the pantry but I did make an awesome dinner from the roasted beef I canned in December. Heated the meat and broth in a pan while I nuked a big potato. When the meat and broth were boiling I scooped out the meat and added thickening to the broth. Roast & baked potato with gravy on top, mmmm comfort food. Took all of 20 minutes too.

    I don’t watch TV but I try to limit listening to news on the radio, it just makes me want to ‘scream at the radio’ and I don’t need any more stress in life. I seem to have very good congressmen I just wish more were like them.

    Prayers to all who need them, I guess that’s all of us! Thank you so much MD for the work you put into this site, it is much appreciated, and thanks to the pack for their input, I learn something new continually and don’t feel all alone in my beliefs.

    • Ladyhawthorne,

      You really don’t need drainage in the bottom of the pot. All you need to do is keep the soil in the pot. If the holes in the bottom of the pot are small enough, just dump the soil in and forget about adding any drainage material.

      If the holes are larger and the soil spills out of them, use a bit of window screen or fine netting (old stockings work great here) and cover the holes.

      If you are using quality soils (either from the store or mixed with your own compost) drainage stones aren’t necessary.

  40. Hi Pack Not alot this week I had to fix my car I had a frozen caliper I had to replace it and the pads. Today I put the tomato seedlings in bigger cantainers. Cant wait for the snow to go so I can start on the raised beds like M.D’s. The chickens are happy its getting warmer and the snow is melting. My youngest daughter is comming over tomorrow so we can hike a little and shoot the 22 rifles. Also picked up 3 Bison mapleleaf coins and 5 dollars face junk on the dip. Well thats about for me.P.S. Glad there is a new Pope He sounds very conservitive.

  41. MD – Your weather makes me jealous. I tried to burn a pile of brush like that but the snow on it melted and put the fire out.

  42. Exile1981 says:

    In the last week I’ve visited 5 gun shops looking for powder for reloading my .45 and my 308; one shop had no powders left but for shotguns. The second one had two 1lb tubs of IMR4064 and no other powders left. So bought both for the 308. The third and fourth shop had no powders I wanted left. Finally the fifth one had 8lb jugs of powder so I bought one of type 231 for my 45acp reloading I want to start on.

  43. This week I went down to Big 5 and paid for a H&R Pardner Pump Protector 12 gauge and 15 rounds of 00. I am going to pick it up this Friday. Spent less time reading the news, but found a few more libertarian-leaning news sites to stay on top of the non-mainstream headlines. Picked up several multi-can packs of canned goods from Costco. Still struggling to figure out how to do food prep for my wife, who has a few food issues. Hoping this week to clean a recently acquired Crosman Nitro Venom Dusk, so I can get out and shoot it a bit. Also hoping to get a a handle on a food storage and rotation plan.

    Mostly focused on not getting overwhelmed and being productive.

    • Jaxun,

      What are your wife’s food issues? We can probably give you a few ideas.

      • Hey Bam Bam, thanks for checking in.

        She’s lactose and gluten intolerant, 9 months ago had weight reduction surgery, and a month ago decided to go vegetarian. The challenges are not insurmountable, just requires even more research. Just today I came across Honeyvillegrain.com and spent a bit of time checking out their recipe blog.

        It’s a workable situation and very much worth he effort. At least we didn’t invest in 6 month’s worth of food before she made the major changes. LOL.

        • Jaxun,

          Lactose intolerance: She can probably still eat yogurt, cottage cheese and ice cream.

          Gluten intolerance: Main starches will be oatmeal, quinoa and rice.

          Vegetarian: Main protein will be beans, chick peas, dal,

          Key term for Google research: “gluten free and dairy free”. Check out this website: http://www.godairyfree.org/news/nutrition-headlines/favorite-gluten-free-and-dairy-free-recipes-from-top-special-diet-bloggers

          Also, check out Indian food, especially dal.

          Breakfast

          Rice cereals with freeze dried fruit.
          Oatmeal with freeze dried fruit.
          Make your own granola.

          Lunch and Dinner

          Rice and veggies
          Quinoa and veggies.
          Beans and rice.
          Rice crackers with egg and spinach/mushroom quiche
          Soup–tomato soup, carrot soup, veggie soup, pumpkin soup

          If I were in your position, I would consider getting a dehydrator and making up your own dehydrated foods.

        • Sw't Tater says:

          Jaxun, I have same issues with lactose, and suspect gluten intolerance to a degree. I also had a similar surgery 18 years ago. I have a couple of things I wish to pass on..in about 4-5 years, some ppl who have gastric surgery have an anemia develop. It is because in some persons it destroys the intrinsic factor, which is available only in liver or a rx called Foltrin. There is a natural source by Carlton labs, buffalo liver capsules. Large vitamin whse’s can get them. There is a lactose free cheese, made from soy on the market. When I goof and eat milk/cheese the herb everlasting, made into a tea,(I use two tsp , whole herb in one cup of water) works to stop the intolerance..before it happens. Hope these tips help your sweetie.

          • Sw't Tater says:

            Jaxun, it is important for you to know…lactose intolerant ppl. ALL accept different foods diffferently, it depends on the extent of intolerance. and things she tolerates now, she may not be able to tolerate in 6-8 months. This is just one aspect of Gastric By-Pass.
            If she starts having trouble with another food, I would suggest a diet diary to help her track down the issue. She should try to make a list of foods she just does not tolerate… should she have to go to a hospital those lists are very helpful.
            Unless I use rabbit tobacco tea I can not eat anything with milk, whey or any of the sub- components…including cottage cheese, cheddar cheese of any kind, yogurt of any kind… i could use the soy based ones to some extent, then they stopped making them.. Nuts would be good choices, if she tolerates them…I don’t but my mom does, and she had the surgery.

            • Very helpful!

              She had the sleeve, so the changes in terms of gastric tolerance and change are not as severe. She has a growing list of no-no foods, which conversely shrink the list of yes foods, lol. We are doing lots of experimentation. One of her mainstays is Quest and thinkThin bars, so we try to keep a few week’s worth of those on hand. Fortunately, we both love peanut butter, so I will be on the lookout for a good source of powdered PB since the natural stuff doesn’t have the longest shelf life.

              I tell her that she is in charge of finding foods and recipes she is interested in trying, since I am in charge of shopping and cooking… and cleaning.

          • Thanks for the insight Tater!

        • Jaxun have M.D. give you my email. I have several kindle recipe books to recommend on gluten free as for lactose probiotics (kefer, yogurt, etc) can help, can recommend books on how to do those as well. Drop me a line

  44. G’day there, M.D. and fellow happy campers ~

    I bought myself a new, portable lite-weight Short Wave radio.

    It is a Grundig model G3 Globe Traveler that is a digital radio that covers all the short wave bands & frequencies and has a highly desirable and easy to use feature called Single Side Band (SSB). With SSB you can tune in to HAM (amateur) radio operators. HAM operators offer a valuable service and are able to transmit emergency information during times of crisis (storms, war, civil unrest, large scale power outages, etc.) and they can do so with battery power.

    MSRP is $169.95 but at Universal Radio, Inc. it’s selling for $89.77. It’s their best selling Short Wave radio. The direct link for this G3 Globe Traveler is: http://www.universal-radio.com/catalog/portable/4033.html

    Another hot item I ordered from this company is a twelve-dollar Sangean ANT60 Portable SW Antenna that easily fits in your pocket. It extends out to 23′ and this inexpensive antenna greatly aids in signal reception for your short wave radio. I could not find it on their web-site but when I called the company I asked about a portable antenna and they recommended to me the Sangean ANT60.

    If any of you are interested here’s the company’s contact info:

    POC: Ian
    Location: Reynoldsburg, Ohio
    Tel.# 1.800.431.3939
    Web-site (Home): http://www.universal-radio.com/index.html

    Take care now.

    Respectfully submitted,
    Billy

    “It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man.
    It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in princes.”
    -Psalm 118:8-9 [AV]

    “Salvation is of the LORD.” -Jonah 2:9c [AV]

    “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth My word, and
    believeth on Him that sent Me, hath everlasting life, and shall
    not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.”
    -John 5:24 [KJV]

    —Jesus Christ the LORD, sent by the Father to effectually & fully SAVE poor, needy, wretched sinners by His own sovereign free grace and by His perfect righteousness charged to our accounts!

    • lol

    • Hi Billy,
      Thanks for the info on the shortwave radio, it is an item that I have thought about and do not have yet. Contact with the outside world and what is happening in a SHTF scenario could be essential to survival.
      Thanks too for the scripture, it always helps when I get distressed by our country/world news.

  45. So, what the heck does M.D. stand for in M.D. Creedmore ?

    1. Manly and debonair?
    2. Many defects?
    3. Mean and dirty?
    4. Martin Daniel?

    This should be the pole question next Friday.

  46. ozhillbilly says:

    Hi Pack! I spent today working on the garden. I also purchased a bunch of supplies for said garden. I’m still trying to buy two separate 1964 International Scouts. One is here locally and the second one in a state to the south. Should be able to put the two together a make a good user and have lots of spare parts. I’ve been as busy as a dog chasing its tail so that’s about it for me and my prepping. Take care gang and God Bless!

    • axelsteve says:

      ozhillbilly. Good luck on the scouts. They are pretty good rigs if you know about them. I get the feeling that you do though.

      • ozhillbilly says:

        Hi axelsteve. Yes, I believe the International Scout would serve someone well in most situations. The little four cylinder, four wheel drive, manual transmissions are bare bones basic and they have no electronics to speak of. Like most vehicles of that era (60’s) they are plagued with rust. Still, with careful looking you can find a good one around for reasonable prices, plus there are alot of clunkers (parts vehicles) out there for just above salvage prices. I’ll try to keep the gang posted on my progress.

        • axelsteve says:

          oz. The 4 cylender head is just 1 v8 head on the 4 banger. I like that simple engineering. Check the cab mounts that mount the body to the frame.

  47. I’m slowly coming out of the “lurker” stage and commenting on this and a few other sites. I’d say that’s progress. Bought a FoodSaver and jar sealer this week. I’ve had the FoodSaver before but its been a while. Can’t wait to try it out this weekend to seal up the hubby’s coffee beans into canning jars.
    Found some boneless hams on sale and am in the process of canning up some right now. I also watched some food storage videos online, now trying to figure out how to get a little extra cash to order some long term food storage items.
    I realized that our OTC medicines are almost gone, so will need to stock up on several supplies as soon as I can catch a sale.
    We got an estimate on a whole house generator (propane) now we just have to wait for our other house to be rented and we can get it.

    • LB,

      I have started selling stuff on Ebay for extra money. We have sold more than $1000 so far this month. If you are comparison shopping for long term food storage stuff, make sure you check out the LDS Online Store.

      • Bam Bam …what kind of stuff do you sell?

        • Lisa,

          Mostly crap we’ve had in the closets for years: collectibles, camping gear not appropriate for our climate, things that people gave us that we would never use.

  48. No real preps this week as all extra funds are going to the kitchen remodel! :D We live in a single wide mobile home (938sq ft). The kitchen was poorly laid out and no storage. We will have about 3 times the storage and hopefully will be done in a week.
    The last 2 and half years have been a major adjustment. We went from over 2000sq ft home to homeless (because of a fire). Lived in a travel trailer for 7 months and then into this place. Our home is paid for and we are on the same acre that our house was on, been here since 1984! We thought about moving up into the mountains but we would be more strapped for cash than by staying put.
    I was already learning how to can and I had a pressure cooker and a water bath canner with quite a few jars. Lost it all. Some of that had been given to me by relatives. Now getting it all replaced slowly but surely.
    Since the weather is so nice I will be going out and start working in the garden tomorrow. Get to clean out all of the kitchen cabinets today…. yipee! DH and son will get to destroy cabinets tomorrow!!

  49. Yahoo, another project done so I can get on with what needs to be accomplished.
    Our neighbor came over with his tractor and cut a road up the hillside so that I could get to the water storage tank(our tractor is to small). We originally had a building around it catching the rain water to fill the tank, then gravity fed it to the livestock. The past three years the building has finally met it match…mother nature. Of course the building survived two major fires in our area over the past twenty years. The cows and donkey(before he passed)using it for a scratching post. It was time to get in there tear everything down, and put it back into operation. I will frame it with an inverted roof so that the winter rains will fill the tank(future project), but right now with early spring hitting us. I need to prepare for water storage for the livestock and high fire season. So DH might get dinner later than usual, once I get a hold of a project the only thing that gets fed is the livestock. Hard to miss the mooing, and when they get started the whole neighborhood knows they are not getting feed. Well I have work to do, catch the pack later.

  50. Ozarkana says:

    Hi Y’all,
    Our weather has improved considerably. I am ready to get out into the garden; but I found a local meat market with fresh hamburger for $2.99 a pound. I canned 54 half pints of hamburger. I think I will try for, at least, another 36 before I will be happy with the amount that I have. A half pint is just the right size to throw into a package of Bear Creek chili soup mix.

    I got the strawberries uncovered and the citrus trees out of their winter home, in the garage.

    Another order for spices went into Bulk Foods. com this week; and, I just placed another order for bandages, tape and gauze from Calvet supplies. com.

    If you order from someone who is not already an advertiser, don’t forget to suggest that they might like to contact M.D. about advertising here.

    Each week, I think that I need just one more week to get it all together; then, someone will post an idea on here that I had not thought of; and, I see another hole that needs filled. Thank you all so much for all of the hints, tips, tricks, ideas, and suggestions. You all really are a clever bunch of friends.

    • Sw't Tater says:

      FYI… something I have noticed… When an item goes on markdown, with good dates, it is because they are going to escalate the price, or change the size of the container…to a smaller amount with a similar price… So y’all be sure to stock up when those “too good to be true sales ” come along.

      • Sw’t Tater,

        I have noticed the same thing. The dog shampoo we use (for the dog) was marked down to $2.99 a bottle. I cleared out the entire shelf. The following week they stocked smaller bottles for $8.99.

  51. moonstone says:

    Got some really great buys!10 boxes medical gauze,75cents ea at Menards.3stainless steel mixing bowls$1.00ea thrift store.2boxes borax detergent booster $2.50 ea. 8 packages york peppermint patties reg 9.99 for 2.00 each.Love my patties! Ant /roach spray,can you believe it,37cents each!All at K-mart.Have an Amish store couple of miles ,some of the stuff is dated or damaged.I always read date and stay away from damaged cans.8 bottlesBragg vinegar 50cents ea. dated 2017 ,8 lg cans albacore tuna $1.00ea,dated 2015,8lg jars minced meat for pies$1.00ea.Also powdered milk,freeze dried strawberries,dehydrated potato assortment from Ready Store.Keep prepping pack,May God give us the means to be able to do so and the wisdom to do so.

    • axelsteve says:

      Not much this week. A relative offered to sell me a 22 rifle. I do not have the money now.He told that he could hold it for me, he wants to get a marlin 30-30. I hope it works out it is a savage tube feed semi. I forget the model number.

    • ladyhawthorne says:

      Check your tuna, there has been a recall this week on Chicken of the Sea and Bumble Bee.

      • Recently read on FDA website…Tuna has very high mercury levels.
        May wish to consider canned salmon. Much healthier and the lowest on mercury. Great for the heart. I use canned salmon in recipes calling for canned tuna. My family likes it better than tuna.
        Just a FYI

  52. Grannytraveler says:

    Totally broke now as our boxer Anna had to have a c-section. We kept waiting to see when she would deliver (taking temp, etc) but nothing was happening. Took her into the vet and was told she had been in labor for 3 days w/o contractions. They tried “pit” (forgot the real name) trying to get the contractions going but no luck. Told us the 4 puppies were dead but that she needed the c-section. I said go ahead and the docs were amazed that 2 of the puppies survived-the biggest one and the runt. If that wasn’t bad enough, a day later the momma laid on the runt and suffocated it. I heard my son yelling, ran upstairs and he was holding the little limp baby. It’s mouth was open and little tongue lolling out. I took it from him, the body was still warm and believe it or not, started giving it mouth to mouth. After about a minute it’s little lungs expanded a bit. That was all the encouragement I needed so I kept it up. After 5 minutes of puffing it started breathing on its own and moving. She seems to be doing fine now. We are supplementing her feeding and she is a lot stronger-up to 11 oz while her big sister is 18 oz. As of today they are 3 days old.

    As far as prepping goes, I am stocking up on canned goods currently whenever I can find them on sale. Have started my tomato plants and planted a nectarine tree and an asian pear tree. They were bare root trees marked down to $6 so I decided to go for it. The nectarine is leafing out but nothing yet from the pear. Have also started my seeds.

    • WYO Ryder says:

      WAY TO GO GRANNY!! :-)
      (but sorry to hear about the other pups…)
      Done that for foals too.

    • Granny Traveler,

      Wow. I think you should name that puppy “Angel” if it’s a female and “Lucky” if it’s a male.

    • JeffintheWest says:

      You rock Granny! I’ve heard of that before (a friend of mine had a pet fall into a swimming pool and drown and he performed “mouth to snout” resuscitation on it (his word choice, not mine) and saved the dog. But still, it’s not the first thing most people think to do!

  53. Sw't Tater says:

    Brenda, I would like to know where you can find to add 3 times the storage in a trailer..mine is a 720 sq ft model.
    ….. I also have gardening fever, temp in the 70’s yesterday and today, and our lows 45 and higher. It will change soon, so y’all don’t have to be jealous.Our wild pear tree is producing us a pretty flowering, but needs a pollinator at the very least.Has always had very small hard fruits(it volunteered from where Grandma threw out her scraps, 20 yrs ago.) The dogwoods are not budding yet, but the red buds have…spring is not quite here, but coming.
    ….Did get a start on the raised bed,3x20ft. but did not get it finished /prior committment. Will keep it on the list..
    … Have about 25 Oregon Spring tomatoes up in planting tray, and a two peppers, seed were packed for last year…glad I wasn’t depending on those peppers.
    …. Worked on other items on to-do list…mostly cleaning, organizing
    I don’t feel bad, but have a huge deep bruise on back of my lower leg,no excessive heat, Homan’s sign is negative.but I am staying off feet and leg on a heating pad, took ASA, for blood thinning.Unable to contact Dr. I was able to work two hours yesterday..just a little more $ to help a bit. Got a few fresh veggies, some of which are slated for dehydration. (bruise wasn’t sore yesterday)
    … I did rotate some water this week,+ added 10 gallons. This is hardest, since we do not use/buy any juices /rare soda’s. I rely on milk containers that are bleached, vinegar, and food grade (found) containers.
    ….read and searched re: desired herbals/foods and methods to obtain the best results..from each one considered.
    …. have a plan, DH on board, ..to a point. Wants some different items, and that’s not a bad thing. …..
    I am not a catholic, but also glad that the new leader of that religion will be conservative in values.
    ….To all newbies and lurkers a hearty welcome here. Glad to have you learning as we learn.. Take care all..Keep on keeping on!

    • Sw’t Tater,

      Be careful using milk jugs for water containers. They tend to get brittle with age and split along the seams.

      • Sw't Tater says:

        I’ll just have to rotate them, and take them out of service..3/4 of my jugs are milk, it’s the only fluid we buy in a re-useable jug, besides vinegar and bleach.

        • I get 2 to 3 years in the light and have some 4 year old jugs in the dark. I just rotate filtered tap water every 6 months and toss milk jugs when they start to crack.

        • JeffintheWest says:

          Sometimes our local supermarket sells organic or raw milk in glass containers. If you don’t mind eating the refund for the bottle, you can find some pretty nice (heavy duty) bottles that way, though you need to make sure you store them someplace where they’ll find it hard to fall down and break! We use plastic tubs with bubble wrap if they are going to be sitting a while….

    • Sw’t Tater,
      The kitchen and living rooms were originally open to each other. We added a partial wall so that we could add upper cabinets and we had an outside door that was closed up and will be using that space for a pantry and like I said the kitchen was poorly laid out. I love to watch certain shows about small spaces and how to create more storage. I am always on the lookout for ideas.

  54. Got some plants in the ground, expanded my garden to 30×90, got a meat processing saw on layoway, chickens in the coop, did some searching for Nubian goats found a guy who wants to sell 5 for 600 all in all a good week

  55. Indiana joe says:

    Pretty much just worked on the barrel stove. Got it done today and will have the inaugural fire tomorrow to burn off the oil. Can’t wait!! Also picked up to bottles of lamp oil and a new lamp. Thats it. Happy prepping!!

    • I'm A Pret Kat says:

      I’d love to know how you made a barrel stove. My S.O. and I talk about it all the time.

      • Indiana joe says:

        I got the kit from menards on clearance for 17 bucks. It came with the door the flue and the legs..all cast iron. But no instructions!! I got the barrel from my neighbor for free as he works with machine equipment and that’s how they get their hydronic oil. I have an older barrel from a car repair shop that was full of antifreeze, but it is a bit rusty and wanted something newer. Once you get the kit however it is pretty self explanatory, just trace out the holes to cut and screw holes for the bolts. I just used a jigsaw with a metal cut blade. The whole project took about an hour. I had a little trouble lighting it for the first time. The fire has to be hot enough to burn off the oil inside. I used lamp oil to get a good flame and burnt a hickory log. It smoked at first but ended burning for 8 hours. There are some good vids on YouTube…search how to make a barrel stove. Weather here sucks as it is 60 one day and 20 the next. I will light for the second time this weekend. They say if you don’t like the weather in Indiana wait 10min and it will change. Have a feeling winter isn’t quite over yet.

  56. Pineslayer says:

    Did some minor repairs on the Deuce, scrounged more free materials (Lumber, tools, piping, and some cool 12V fire alarms from schools), and shared my sourdough starter and recipe with new friends. Good week.

  57. Read this article on guns and pot. The main argument is this: Washington State and Colorado passed laws legalizing pot. Such laws are contrary to federal law. Obama elected not to enforce the federal law. Many southern states are passing or have passed laws making it illegal to assist in any federal gun grab or gun registry. Question to Obama: Will our respect our guns laws like you respect their pot laws?

    http://cnsnews.com/blog/gregory-gwyn-williams-jr/growing-number-states-eye-bills-defy-federal-gun-laws

    • JeffintheWest says:

      Not likely — pot can help keep the proles calm and under control; guns, on the other hand….

  58. Bought a 1980 Toyota Tercel, with a manual transmission and only 67,100 original miles on it. It’s carbureted and the electronics are almost non-existent, so it should live through an EMP. It has sat for a long time, so needs belts and hoses and even though it still has great tread, there are cracks in the sidewalls, so new tires, and we are registering it in Oregon in both our names instead of CA. It will be my little Oregon/California commuter.

    I’m also considering moving my residency to Oregon. I’m now spending more time there with my BF than I am in CA, however, he has applied for jobs down here, and one that he is very well qualified for seems to be his dream job. I’ll continue to pay the mortgage and my sons and grandsons will continue to live here and take care of my critters until we figure out what we are going to do.

    I took a beginning bee keeping class today and bought my beehive and tools. I’m really excited and found someone who treats their bees like pets, I think he’s the guy I want to learn from.

    We have most of the new garden/orchard fenced. It is 68′ by 100′ and I’m really excited. I probably won’t have the garden in full production this year, because it has to be terraced, but I’m excited about doing it all. At the bottom, where I probably won’t be able to get to this year, I’m going to be planting buckwheat, as a treat for my bees.

    Right now, I have asparagus and strawberries to plant, which are perennials, so will be in permanent beds. I’ll be painting my beehive light green and place it among the fruit trees so that they get afternoon shade, however, my bees don’t arrive until May.

    There will eventually be a small shed for the rototiller and potting benches, and a shallow pond (for the bees), and a garden bench under the big Madrone tree, so I can sit out there and enjoy it all.

    I will be making long rows along the fence as well, and plant against the fence things like sunflowers and hollyhock (I have a bunch of volunteers that I need to transplant out of the beds in the front yard), some space for the climbers as well. There is lots of room in this garden, so planning out the winding paths, and planting beds.

    My BF also spent a lot of time with me and my sons, showing what needed to be done to make the place more secure. So we are doing some clearing, and going to put a short fence for about an acre around the house, and I’ve ordered a bunch of hedge type rosebushes to grow into and cover the barbed wire fence. The type I ordered is known for producing rose hips, so they will also be a great source of vitamin C. Eventually, we’ll also transplant some of the millions of blackberries that grow wild on my property to make a blackberry fence around the outer perimeter of the entire property.

    That’s mostly it. I need to buy more food, actually a lot more food, but the car, bee hive and garden fencing have been taking up my prep money. Hopefully next month I’ll be able to get back on track and keep my poor terrified neighbors awake at night, knowing I’m buying more food. :-)

    • Sw't Tater says:

      Sounds like a good plan..and now you have some help..! i am happy for you.

    • Hi Michele,
      Your plan sounds lovely and practical. I can picture it in my mind’s eye. What kind of rosebushes did you get.? I am interested in fences with natural functional barriers added, blackberries, rosebushes, etc.

      • I got Rosa Rugosa roses. This is what it says about them.

        The Rosa Rugosa Rose produces hundreds of beautiful blooms, and is also nature’s richest source of Vitamin C! Lovely, crimson-pink, single and semi-double roses are produced by the hundreds each June, and then continue to re-bloom intermittently until frost. Planted 2′ apart, Rosa Rugosa roses make an ideal rose fence, growing about 6′ high. Makes a hedge so strong and thick, animals, children and trespassers can’t get through.

        They are 24 for $35.49 at:
        http://www.directgardening.com/detail.asp?ProductID=6661&nav=ros

        • Thank you so much for the reply and link! Got to get the fence built and then add the rose bushes!! Oo-oo-oh, I can just see them and then rose hip tea!

    • Love the idea of using blackberries as a natural fence. We are planting forsynthia along the front fence line because the county sprays for mosquitos and I do not want that poison in my garden which happens to be in the front yard.
      A natural gas pipeline divides my property in half. We have the buildings away from the road and the garden area close to the road. I have been thinking about what to do around the rest of our place, but where the pipline is we are limited on what we can do. There are lots of wild blackberries that I could transplant around the edges. SIL lives next door but I have woods behind me and on the other side. Ideas anyone?

      • Brenda;
        If it is gardening items you would like to put in close to, but not on the pipe line. I might have an idea for you. I saw in M/Earth or Countryside where they used cattle panels to frame out garden areas for their climbing plants. At the base they had wooden frames and/or brick blocks that made up the planting beds. It would be an arbor over the pipeline but yet you would be able to reclaim your growing space. If cattle panels are not workable for you, you can use pvc pipe that is very bendable and hook them together to make a loop. You will need to secure them to the beds an to each other light weight netting can be attached to this frame for beans, cucumbers, snow peas any thing that is a climber but light weight due to the type of netting.

    • axelsteve says:

      Michele The tercels are good little cars.When getting tires have the c.v. shafts inspected to see if they need replacement.The boots split on them and you loose the grease and they go to heck 0ver time. You can also get the boots replaced and the joints relubed if needed.

  59. Out on a mission trip pre-lim run for the church today so just getting around to my posting (209 comments rights now):

    Had a pretty productive week for picking up preps:

    Actions:
    Maint. On DW’s car

    Equipment:
    Misc Manual Kitchen tools at Thrift Store
    8”x 2” dia candle in jar: 2
    Knife Sharpening Oil: 2
    package of 16 tea candles (fire starters)
    $125 in parts for my new truck (for $0)
    Books (3 prep fiction, 2 non)
    Strike-Anywhere matches: 3 boxes
    Cassette to MP3 player/converter

    Trade Items:
    Shave cream/gel: 3
    Disposable lighters: 15
    Liquor, fifths: 3
    Liquor, pints: 1

    Medical:
    Stock up on Meds (almost @ 3 mo. Spare)
    Alcohol, pints: 3
    Petroleum Jelly: 2
    Dental Floss/picks: 2 (60 count)
    Travel toothbrush w/tooth paste: 1

    Food(s):
    Canned strawberries: 6
    Spices: 20
    Bear Creek soup mix: 10
    Coffee Singles: 1 box
    Imitation Vanella: 1 bottle
    Hot Cocoa, singles: 300

    PM’s/Financial:
    Selling excess equipment for cash
    5 ounces of silver

    Guns & Stuff:

    Reloading:
    Handgun powder: 2 lbs
    308 cal, 150 gr bullets: 1 box (100), 1 box (50)
    308 cal, 130 gr bullets: 1 box (100)

    Ammo:
    308 150 gr FMJ: 50 rounds
    20 ga, #4 shot: 50 rounds
    20 ga, slugs: 35 rounds

    Checked out our “new” exchange at the AF Base north of here. Absolutely nothing special; nothing that I can’t get off post for the same or less. Even the Class 6 store is part of the PX; selection is half of what it was in the old facility.

    • In the last week I was only able to find 22 LR in one store, and these were Eley MAtch ammo for $19.99 for 50 rounds. And even then there was only 4 boxes on the shelf. I found some bullets for reloading 308/30-06 and 30-30. I walked in to a local gun shop and found their powder shipment had just come in, so I was able to get the other 2 pounds for my current project. Cabela’s had very little in reloading, a fair amount of ammo (except 45 ACP, 9mm, and 223), but no 22 LR. I couldn’t even find the place where it would have going, lots of empty shelf space. Except for AR’s, there were plenty of guns, but I’d check ammo availability before I’d buy one. If I had to buy a hunting rifle right now, a 270 is the way to go up here.

      • axelsteve says:

        Jp I have seen some boxes of 270 sitting in the display at our wallyworld for a decent price. I used to have a 270 and liked it, it was a fn mauser bolt gun. Wish that I had it now .

    • Rider of Rohan says:

      I gotta stop reading your posts, JR. The last one I read cost me over $500 dollars and a silent wife for a day or so. Then again….

      Haha…just kidding, but you are pretty inspiring when it comes to prepping.

  60. I started the week in the Emergency Room. My elderly Mom became ill with a virus and I knew I needed to get on top of things so she wouldn’t get dehydrated. She was given an IV and some meds and sent home. The silver lining to this cloud was that I got to practice caring for someone with an infectious disease using proper protocols. I tried to handle things as if we were in a Grid down situation. This was a good learning experience.

  61. This week:
    1. Bought a dwarf santa rosa plum and a japanese persimmon tree. Last week bought a Methley plum and a brown turkey fig.
    2. Worked on picking up rocks, and branches from our to be garden. We have very very rocky soil. May have to rethink to raised beds.
    3. Teaching daughter to cook, blackberry cobbler and persimmon pudding.
    4. A new friend came over today and taught my daughter how to spin yarn on a spiinning wheel and a spinning spindle- lots of fun.
    M.D.
    Your chicken coop looks like it is entirely enclosed on top, is it? The rocks look like a good idea too to keep our critters. My daughter’s piano teacher dug the fencing down 8 inches into the ground, entirely enclosed the pen, put extra small fencing on the coop to keep the raccoons from strangling the chickens,and the snakes from slithering through and a padlock. She has had every type of critter try to get her chickens; copperheads, raccoons, cats, hawks, foxes.

    • I have chickens and a backyard adjacent to a forest. When I buit my coop I thought about digging the fencing down underground but decided it would be too much work. Instead, I placed patio paving stones around the perimiter of the coop and run. It prevents animals from being able to dig under the fencing. So far (over a year later) no animal has gotten in. I see evidence of the occasional attempt, but they quickly give up when they hit the pavers.

      This week I set up electric poultry netting so that my chickens have a larger, protected outdoor area to run around in. I hooked the netting up to a solar-powered fence charger, and so far the system is working very well. 3000 volts of protection!

      The chickens love the freedom, and I don’t have to worry about them being harmed by ground animals (they also have plenty of bushes and brush to protect them from hawks).

  62. Not much this week as we had required repairs to the RV (our primary residence)
    The other night we ate from our storage. A can of pulled pork, Added BBQ sauce. Was pretty good. Finished the leftovers two nights later.
    Today I did pick up a couple of cans of Cranberrys at .60 cents off, each and added that to our stores.
    This week I did something for the first time. Started the hiring process for a new employee. Narrowed 61 applicants down to 3 for interviews. Interesting experience.

  63. AZ Rookie Prepper says:

    Hi to all in the pack, M.D., I sure enjoy watching your chicken photos. I am still behind on getting my coop built. Here’s what I did this week – I traded a duplicate cook book for about 40 pds of rabbit poop for the garden, tilled that in. Got 2 of 4 holes dug for fruit trees that I’ll plant. Picked up some more strawberry plants, will put into half barrel planters next weekend. Went searching for ammo, no joy there. Otherwise just worked and enjoyed being with the family. Hope all are well, prayers to those that need em. Keep prepping folks, feels like times getting short.

  64. Schametti says:

    Hey Guys!! :D Sorry I’m a day late again.. I’ve been out of town, staying with family the last week, so needless to say I didn’t do much in the way of prepping.

    I have spent almost three hundred dollars this week on ammunition.. *Wince* I didn’t really WANT to spend that much on ammunition, but like I’ve been saying the last couple weeks, I really think we needed to flush out our stash a little bit, before I no longer have the chance. I know it’s terribly conspiracy theory of me, lol.. but I really think that the government is doing their best to buy up the bulk of the ammunition out there, so whatever I can get my hands on right now, I’m getting it. So we boughr several boxes of 9 mm and .45 cal, in both target range bullets, and personal protection hollow points. We still don’t have.. “enough” but …everything we add is more than we had. :)

    I went to the range this week, with my husband, and aunt and uncle. My aunt is the one who’s been giving me such a hard time lately about ‘hoarding’ supplies.. but thankfully, since her husband is an air force chief, and expert marksman, she’s a-okay with guns.. despite never having shot one. Well we changed that for her this week. It was great to get back to the range to shoot.. since it’s only my fourth time. I’m so pleased with myself that even though I’m new to guns, and shooting, I’ve got quite the eye for it. My Uncle nicknamed me Deadeye this week, haha.. I had to google it, but I was pleased with the title.

    I got to shoot my Uncle’s 357 Magnum Revolver that he inherited from his father when he passed away.. and Oh.. My.. Gosh.. what a weapon. I think I felt the shockwaves in my toes, lol. My family didn’t think I would shoot it, since it was such a powerhouse weapon, but I ain’t skerred, lol.. It was awesome. I think I actually giggled when it rocked the ether. It was fatastic.

    I bought two blueberry bushes this week. I’m so excited. A brunswick dwarf, and.. another one. Shoot, I’ve forgotten what it’s called already, I’ll have to go look. But they’re both dwarf varieties, and I don’t know a THING about blueberry bushes, but I know everyone says plant plant plant.. so I’m all about taking my first nose dive into gardening this spring.

    My seedlings are all doing pretty great. Radishes and Beef Steak Tomatoes, Cherry Tomatoes, Green Onions.. Etc. I just got some new variety of strawberry.. Everbearing Quinault. I don’t even know what that means, lol.. but these are the weirdest things I’ve ever seen. I planted them inside tonight.. they were little root heavy, viny, dirt bullbous octopus like things, and kind of frightening, but we’ll see what comes from them. I’ve got them in two long trough like planters, across my dining room table, since it’s still thirty degrees outside. *Sigh*

    This week I WILL finish my barrel planters, if it kills me.. lol.. I will put aside all other painting/beading/Crafting hobbies, and work on my prepping.

    I sampled a few things in my prepping pantry this week too. I know, I know, people keep saying stock what you eat, but I totally didn’t do that. O:) So this week I’ve been “trying” things to see what I think about them. Slowly. Since I don’t want to go through things faster than I can restock them. I tried spam for the first time this week… Interesting stuff, but not terrible with a little mustard. I now know I need to add mustard and crackers to my pantry. Mountain House Stroganoff is amazing!! And the ice cream sandwiches are too cool for a treat! :)

    That’s pretty much it for me this week. I hope there’s at least SOMEONE left here at the end of the weekend to read me.. I promise not to be late next week. :) Much Love from here.. ~ Amy.

    • worrisome says:

      Mountain House Spaghetti is pretty tasty as well. As long as you have some parmesian cheese around. Sometimes when I am way too tired in the evenings, that is my go to for a quick and easy dinner.

    • riverrider says:

      s, you can stock the noodle, meat and condiments way cheaper than the mountain house, and make your own. that also gives you flexibility to make other stuff with it. noodles from emergency essentials, longterm canned meats from keystone or provident pantry. sour cream powder and other ingredients from ee or other shops. i know they are quick and easy, but we don’t stock a single can of just-add-water meals. we started with rice, beans, and wheat in bulk, then all the things that make them yummy. then branched out into pastas, veggies etc and the meats. freeze dried meats are way too expensive, use keystone or provident, and of coarse spam and dak ham. better yet can your own:) we love reading your posts!! keep up the good work.

      • SCPrepperPoppa says:

        Amy,
        Missed your post last week! You get more done in a week than I do in a month, of course I’m on the “wrong side” of 50! LOL!
        Shootings lots of fun isn’t it?
        Michael

        • Schametti says:

          Michael, awww. I didn’t think anyone would even NOTICE me not being here to post last week, you’re so sweet. :) And don’t you know.. fifty is the new thirty! So you’re only as old as you feel. (If you’re anything like me, even though I’m only thirty-five, I feel fifty, haha. Oi). And yessss, the range is a blast. I feel very accomplished when I go to practice, and a little less leery around guns every time. I know that I should always treat them with respect, but I want to be comfortable around them at the same time.

          I’m stil lgetting a TON of grief from friends and family. One of my aunts have started telling everyone that I’ve joined a militia, and doesn’t mention that she’s kidding. Gosh, maybe she’s not. ?? My best friend of five years has decided we’re no longer compatible because of my new… hobbies, and won’t even speak to me. My husband lost one of HIS old best friends, because he thinks we’ll be shooting up the local schools soon, and hiding toddlers in underground bunkers. *Rolls Eyes* It was easy for me to dismiss the stupid opinions of stupid people, and not worry too much about it, but when it’s people you formerly loved and respected that turn on you.. Wow, it’s a real eye opener, and a little heart-breaking at times. But there’s no going back for me. I’m holding my head up high, and proud of my choices, and I sleep well at night. (Well, at least when I’m not making mental notes of what I still need to prep next anyway, lol).

      • Schametti says:

        That is very smart, RR! I have a little base of freeze dried, just add water meals because when I first started, that seemed easiest. I… like easy, lol. BUT, the longer I’m around, the more I learn, and the more I learn the more confidence I glean, and the more confidence I glean, the more I think, hey.. maybe I CAN do this myself. So maybe I will ADD some homemade meals to my purchased meals, and see how I do! Thanks for the idea, AND the encouragement. :)

    • Everbearing means that the strawberries will produce a few berries at a time, all summer long. You will get quite a few in spring, then again in fall. In the summer when it is hot, each plant will only make a few berries at a time.

      If you want to make jam or such, you will need June Bearing strawberries. Those plants will produce tons in June and then nothing else until next June.

      I don’t like strawberry jam so I have everbearing plants. Sometimes I wished I would get more at one time (like when i need them for a special dessert) but overall I am very pleased with the everbearing plants. I get a perfect amount for smoothies each morning.

      If you like the idea of everbearing, you can just keep increasing the number of plants you have until you get to the harvest amounts you want. Then you will continue to get that amount all summer long!

      Most people don’t understand this about strawberries, they LOVE calcium. Bonemeal is perfect when you plant the new strawberry plant. Crushed TUMS will work for years two and three.
      Unfortunately, strawberries don’t last forever – you will get three or four years tops out of each plant so new strawberries are needed each year. I try to replant 1/3 of the patch each year. (I grow my replacement strawberries from seed – it’s cheaper.)

      Let me know if you have any questions about your new strawberries!

      • Schametti says:

        Kate, amazing info, thank you. It didn’t even occur to me to put tums in my strawberries dirt. I love learning new things, lol. Where do I get bonemeal? I shall have to google that and get some soon, before I get my strawberries in their ‘final resting place’ – aka my container barrels this spring.

        I have about.. Hmmm…. twenty, maybe.. alpine and wonder berry (?) strawberry plants, from seeds.. in my table top kitchen nursery at the moment. OMG THEY TAKE FOREVER to germinate. And several didn’t come up at all. I have the most strawberries, because I think these were the plant I was most excited about starting. Anyway.. the Everbearing Quinault were the most recent aqcuisition I came across in the garden section, and had to have them. I keep thinking, that the more plants, and TYPES of plants I have, the better my chances are of finding SOMEthing that I’m decent at growing, and not coming away from this experience a failure. I’m definitely giving it my best shot.

        It’s like the two blueberry bushes I bought this week.. (looked the other one up, in the kitchen, besides the Brunswick, I have a Top Hat), I don’t know a thing about them either, so I have a lot to learn before it gets warmer, and they go outside. A friend just told me they like coffee grounds, so I better start accumulating those soon too, so they don’t go… hungry? :/ lol.

        I DO have one question that I keep meaning to look up, and haven’t managed too yet. Worms. I’ll be setting three rainwater barrel containers.. a 55 gallon drum, and two thirty gallon drums, and two smaller ones for the dwarf blueberry bushes.. and since they won’t be in the regular ground, should I collect a few earthworms FROM my yard, and put them in the pots? Would they help aerate the soil? Do I need them? How many? I need to research worms, but it’s furthur down on my googling list.. I have sooooo much to learn. *Groan* I don’t know how I’ll fit it all inside my head, haha.

        Thanks so much Kate!!

        • No, you really don’t need worms in the pots. To aerate the soil, use perlite instead. It comes in good quality potting soil or you can buy it separately and add it to the soil you are using. It will also help insulate the roots from the temp fluctuations they will get in a pot.

          May I ask why you are putting everything in pots? Are you renting your home? If so, then the pots are a great idea. Just make sure not to overcrowd the plant or you won’t get any fruit. If they are babies and you won’t get any fruit for a few years anyway, you have the flexibility to use a somewhat smaller pot and repot later. Be sure the pots drain very well or you could drown the plants. Also, be mindful of the fact that you must provide the all the nutrients the plants need if you are putting them in pots. That means the correct amounts at the correct times. Unfortunately, you can’t put it all in at once and call it good for a year.

          Strawberries do take a very long time to germinate. You also mentioned that some didn’t germinate. Are you watering them on the top of the soil? You may have washed the seeds away. If you are using peat pots, water from the bottom. If you are using newspaper pots, you can’t water from the bottom because the newspaper can’t handle it. Try watering with a dropper so you don’t loose the seeds.

          This procedures is beneficial for all small seeds like strawberries. (The one that comes to mind for me is tobacco.)

          Ask away if you have more questions. I read the WDYDTPTW every week. However sometimes if I am busy, I just scan the comments so put my name somewhere in your comment if you have a specific question for me. That way I will be sure to see it!

          • Schametti says:

            Hey Kate! :) Gah, I KNEW I asked you about the worms somewhere, but then couldn’t find it, So I just asked you again above somewhere, just nevermind that one now, lol.

            I’m not renting my home, I own it, and I have a large back yard. I’m doing the containers this year, since it’s my very first attempt at growing anything green, and in case I didnt like it, failed miserably, or bit off more than I could chew, I wanted something that was easier on me.. and easier to remove if it all went south.

            The strawberries are split up into different groups.. I have several in a small tin pot that came as a starter set from Lowe’s, and they’re not doing too bad.. still tiny though, and they’re a month old or better. The ones that didn’t germinate at all though, were in a bottom self waterer starter from burpee, so I know I didn’t wash the seeds away. I’m not sure what happened, but literally not ONE of them produced. It was strange, and a little discouraging.

            The plants should have a decent enough chance in the containers though, if it ever gets warm enough to put them in there. They are rainwater barrels, (a 55 gallon, and two 30’s), and there are pockets cut out and stretched around the sides.. and when I finish them, there will be a pvc pipe down the middle for watering throughout, and drain holes on the bottom to get rid of excess water.

    • JP in MT says:

      Schametti:

      Quite a week, congrats.

    • Rider of Rohan says:

      Amy, I know you and I are related somehow. The first time I shot a .44 magnum a small tree fell in the distance. The only thing I could think was I got to have me one of these. And although that was years ago, I still love my big bore handguns, .44 mag., .45 acp, and .357 magnums.

      And I love reading your posts, as it gets me excited reading about someone new getting started prepping, along with the fact that you have all these great people here to keep you from making all those mistakes I made. Have a great week.

      • Schametti says:

        Aww RoR, hehe.. maybe we are kindred spirits!! :):):) And I am sooooo grateful for the people here. I know that there are countless mistakes that I would have made, in my initial preps if it wasn’t for the people here. I’m SO GLAD I was told about this blog in my first couple weeks of prepping, so I can learn the right way from the beginning. I love it here.

    • Sw't Tater says:

      There are whole cook books on cooking with spam, look up several and make copies…chances are, if you like the ingredients, it will be good with spam..
      Some ideas to get you started… it’s good BBQ’d, it can be sliced, dipped in egg, coated with flour and black pepper, and browned with flour. and can be served with gravy and eggs for breakfast, anytime. I buy several brands of such meats, they are all a little different, if you are using them in recipe, the fake ones generally work as well for my family…we do prefer spam.
      The more you use your stretcher items, the more money you will have for preps. Mustard is one condiment that has a very long shelf life, so stock it well and with as much variety. Learn to make Ketchup from tomato sauce, paste…Learn to make mayo, from eggs white, oil..etc…

  65. k. fields says:

    First big news here is my milk cow dropped her calf this week – about 2 weeks early.
    Second big news is that she dropped a Jersey bull!!

    While I was gone last summer, there was somehow a mix-up because she should have been bred to an Angus for the off-spring to be raised for meat. I think because I had bred her with a Jersey the year before in the hopes of getting a replacement milk producer (which I did), somehow that confused things, but mother and son are doing fine.

    The question now is, do I raise the Jersey bull as a bull?
    I attempted keeping one of these bulls years ago and the thing almost killed me a couple of times, but it would be good to have him if things turned really bad and the quick shipping of A.I. straws were to become a thing of the past. And I’m more experienced now than I was then, but on the other hand, I was quicker then than I am now.

    Anybody currently keeping a Jersey bull? Let me know what you guys think of the pros and cons..

    • riverrider says:

      k, i raised herfords in my youth. but we shy’d away from jersey bulls, they’re mean! only one meaner is a charlais. neighbor raised jerseys for dairy. i didn’t stray into their pature more than once. if you steer him, he’ll be much better behaved, and edible. jm2c.

      • k. fields says:

        Yeah, I’m well aware of the temperament of a Jersey bull having tried keeping one years ago, but, if things really did go really south, having that bull could be a god-sent – without a bull, no more milk, creme, butter or cheese.
        Was kind of pondering last night – how ’bout if I redo the fencing to make a sort of “pasture moat” around the central part of my place and let that be the bull’s home? He would probably stop most people from wandering in … or at least he’d give plenty of warning if someone tried.

        • riverrider says:

          lol, yeah but i can see you running for the door like a scalded dog every time you come home, LOL!! seriously, if you have to ask us, get rid of him or eat him. then get a better tempered bull. i hear gernseys are docile, but no experience with them. i never trusted any angus either. they seem wild to me. thats why i like herefords. you can look the ol herf bull in the eye and tell his intensions. that said, i nearly got stomped by one when i was 3 and crawled under the fence. naw, i won’t none too smart back then ;)

          • k. fields says:

            Yeah, it’d surly get the blood pumping every morning! – figured I could share that fantasy with you without it being taken seriously.
            I probably will castrate him but the idea that someday down the road I’d no longer be able to produce a true Jersey heifer if mine becomes sick or injured is kind of eating on me.
            Never would have given thought to keeping a Jersey bull if this one hadn’t come on the scene, but since he has …

        • Backwoods Prepper says:

          I seen a sign the other day for your gate it read: You better hope you can make it across the field in 8 seconds becase the bull can do it in 9.

        • Sw't Tater says:

          Be very hands on, If you are going to keep it for a bull, make a pet out of it…as well. Good guard dog!talk about hiding in plain sight!

    • Copperhead says:

      k. fields,
      We didn’t have Jerseys when I grew up, but the neighbors did. The bull was meaner than a junk yard dog. I know it was probably a rare happening, but one killed the farmer when I was in grade school. Maybe selling him or making him a steer would be better. Don’t mean to be a downer, just stating what happened. They are cute little buggers when small. :)

      • k. fields says:

        copperhead, they are incredibly mean – no doubt about that. When I had one before, one day he came through a fence and slammed me into (and almost through) the barn wall. If I hadn’t been thin and his horns large, I wouldn’t be here today. I’m reminded of that every day when I look in a full-length mirror and see the strange lump on my left side where the broken ribs didn’t heal correctly.
        Normally I wouldn’t even consider it but for some reason a small voice in the back of my head is telling me I should – but that voice occasionally says some pretty dumb things so that’s way I’m asking for other opinions. Thanks for yours and yes – he’s just adorable right now …

    • k. fields;
      I have to concur with the others about him becoming a steer, better to band him now while his still very small(you will need assistance). We have Blackballies (Hereford/Angus X) like all breeds you get lucky with the babies. Now we have the mom, daughter & son, son was supposed to have been banded, but unfortunately not all parts were there for the banding. So we left him as a bull, since he had no other calves to play with he & I bonded. You can scratch his forehead and ears, he likes to lick my hand. His personality comes from his mom, his dad was another story, I would NOT go into the pasture with him there. First bull I have rented that I felt that way about, an told the supplier(friend)about it. I think he sold him and replaced with a better dis-positioned bull.
      Just a note to the wise, if your cow had a Jersey, it was because a bull jumped the fence during the breeding. If A/I they used the wrong sperm.

      • k. fields says:

        becky,
        Thanks for the post. Yes, the A.I. order got mixed up – I normally breed to Angus but the previous year (2011) I was breeding to get a replacement for my milk cow so I bred Jersey. Last summer I took a long vacation and wasn’t home during the breeding time, so somehow my prior year straw order was simply repeated instead of reverting back to Angus. My fault entirely for not leaving clear instructions. I didn’t think to check the paperwork when I returned home last fall so this Jersey was a surprise.
        I agree I need to make the decision very soon, I usually castrate between 2-3 months on the crosses but a Jersey bull is a whole different kind of critter. Wish I could kid myself into believing that if I treat him like a pet he’ll grow up sweet, but luckily I’m not quite that naive.

  66. Canned 6 qts of chicken yesterday! Used the rawpack method. Looks like it turned out right! Just learning the canning process. Really enjoying it.

    • Yeah its great! Aside from chicken we do alot of venison and pork. And our family really enjoys camping in the summers so we like to can some ready for the frying pan meals, last week pit up 22 pints of corned beef hash, and some chicken and potatoes. They really brown up nice and the jar liquid is almost like an instant sauce or gravy. The canned venison is great with a little BBQ sauce on buns or even saltines.

      • Hey, thanx for the comment. We are campers too,and I appreciate the advice on the ready for pan meals. Do you can pre made corn beef hash, or make your own?
        jrread

        • Make my own It’s much better than the precanned, and really simple. And in my area point cut corned briskets are under 2 $ a pound since its ST. Pattys season. I have the recipe posted on hub pages if you google midwestdad@hubpages.com that and a few other recipes and a pistol review etc should come up. Planning on posting some canned chicken and venison recipes up there soon as well.

      • Backwoods Prepper says:

        1 quart jar of venison and 1 pack of brown gravy yum yum.

        • I can mine with dried garlic and dried or fresh onions as well so the gravy sounds really good never tried that one. We use a little cookies bbq, or alot of times just heat in jar juices and serve with shreded cheese in tortilla shells like a soft taco.

  67. Did find the local Walmart is now stocking Keystone Ground beef (28 oz) picked up 6, picked up a couple Sterite foot lockers, and 2 dozen cans of sweet corn, so all in all not a lot, but another small step

  68. peanut_gallery says:

    Local store had albacore tuna $1 a can. Bought the maximum allowed. Freeze dried blueberries finally came in. Still need to order more freeze dried veggies to round out my supplies.

  69. So here’s the thing: I’m a lurker. Yeah, okay, I posted once about storing brown sugar…I can’t help it, it’s the microbiologist in me. Being a twenty something, I just can’t imagine what I could offer to all of you that have so much experience! But here I sit, the house is clean, the dogs are fed, and the corned beef and cabbage are cooking away (Happy St. Pat’s Day!). So I thought, today is the day…I will post.

    I first saw “the light” in August of last year. Prepping really isn’t a stretch for me. The daughter of a military man and business owner, the daughter of a mother who grew up poor and never let that go, and the wife of an avid hunter and outdoorsman…hunting, guns, and filling the pantry are just part of who we are. But as a young professional working in a VERY liberal city (thank goodness I don’t live there!), I don’t have a network of like minded people – so THANK YOU for being my network, even if I was only lurking.

    So since August (when I saw the light) we’ve purchased a retreat, a few buckets of wise food, a few seed vaults, about 6 months of canned and dried goods, and set up “go” bags for myself, my husband, and both of the dogs. This week, however, we made the big decision to put a building on our land in the woods. So we ordered it and now we’re taking the steps to make sure it is everything we may need someday (heat, storage, sanitary, etc). Oh yeah, and I made a sourdough starter thanks to the recent post.

    Goal for next week: purchase antibiotics for all of the fishies in my family! Any advice is welcome!

    Again, thanks for being my “imaginary friends” and all of the direction provided here.

    • riverrider says:

      welcome in from the shadows :), if you go to youtube and punch in patriotnurse, there are some great vids on ab selection and other concerns, like the fact that dry form ab’s last ten years or more in good storage. ordered a building? what kind of building, if you don’t mind me asking?

      • Thanks for the response, I’ll be looking into AB purchase and storage this week.

        We purchased a timber frame, steel exterior building. It’s a custom ordered, build-it-yourself kit. We’re considering a DIY geothermal setup (we’re in the northwoods – and this is our even more up north place), but that seems like a huge undertaking!

    • Kippler;
      Like MSgt, I would also like to know where you found this kit.
      Just remember we all like to share the knowledge we have acquired over time, that is how we learn. I tell my DN and sister that they need to learn as much from me as possible. I will not always be here for them to learn nor for me to teach, now is the time to be sponge.

      • Thank you all for the great feedback, I’m reading it and sucking it all up like a sponge!

        We purchased the kit from a home improvement store here in the Midwest. I think you can get them from Home Depot or Lowe’s as well. Here’s how it works: You go to the store and sit at a computer kiosk, you work through the virtual building process by choosing every component (size, materials, truss design, color, post type, etc) and the computer spits out a building plan that you take to the building clerk. They will order all of your items, blue prints arrive in the mail, and a couple weeks later all of the building supplies are delivered to the building site. My husband is a genius when it comes to working with his hands and creating something out of nothing (also a master dumpster diver!) so he’s really excited…me, on the other hand? I’ll be minding the children of our help, and keeping the men fed!

    • Klipper,

      I think it’s great that we have 20 somethings posting here. We have all learned a great deal from each other and I imagine everyone here feels the same as I do–we have an obligation to pass along that knowledge.

      So post, ask questions, express frustrations and accomplishments. I am sure you have your own niche where you can speak with authority–e.g., if your husband hunts, you more than likely have some knowledge about how to put up game meat. That’s something I’ve never done.

      • Bam Bam-

        Thank so much, there are a few posters (okay, okay…there’s dozens) that I read religiously…and you’re one of them!

    • Sw't Tater says:

      Klipper,
      You’ve made a great start.
      Keep on reading and learning.
      When you place building, it will become a target for theft.
      Consider making cache’s for part of supplies, small ones are easier to hide, but can also be easily lost…also cooler for medications and boom things. Lots of ideas for making tubes, buckets and etc serve your needs.

      • I’ve thought about this theft issue. Fortunately, my husband and my father are very security concious.

        I’m glad you mentioned the cooler, I’m thinking of digging one in before we get too far in the building process.

  70. Greetings Pack!
    This week was spent stocking up on some extra food, and supplies, I was even able to find some 22LR ammo ,250 rounds, at a local gun shop. Recieved a couple of orders from Amazon and Full Belly Insurance.
    Books:
    Paracord 202 by Todd Mikkelsen,
    US Army Improvised Munitions,
    Contact:A Tactical Manual for Post Collapse Survival by Max Velocity,
    How to Survive the End of the World… by James Wesley Rawles,
    The Four Season Farm Cookbook by Eliot Coleman/Barbara Damrosch
    Stuff:
    US Field Surgery Kit
    Otis Elite Gun Cleaning Kit
    Tagua Gunleather IWB holster for my Walther P22
    Blades USA 6′ tapered bo staff
    Cold Steel Assegai long handle spear
    Cold Steel Spike Hawk tomahawk
    various buckles, rings, carabiners, etc for paracord projects
    20 100′ lengths of multiple colors of paracord
    We’ve also been helping to clean and organize my grandmothers place. She passed away 2 weeks ago at home of an apparent stroke. Marion had been in declining health both physically and mentally for a few years. At 86 she lived the way she wanted, in her own home with family, friends,neighbors, and pets. My mom had moved in to help her out so she will be staying there. Marion was old school, spending a third of her life without electricity or indoor plumbing growing up in the coal region of PA.No nonsence, hard working, always ready to help someone that needed it, with lots of stories about it all.
    Hope I stick around as long to bug my great great grandkids.
    Have a safe and happy week!

    • Grumpy Vermonter says:

      Hey Big D, I posted yesterday, but am still trying to read the comments posted before me and saw that your grandmom passed. May she rest in peace – sounds like she was a good lady! It’s good to live the way you want – I pray we can all do the same for many years to come.

      • Grumpy Vermonter,
        Thanks, we are sad shes gone but happy she got to be here to see all her great great grandkids…wow I feel old now! Listening to her stories made you appreciate what you had.

  71. Bought a bigger lockable box for my 9mm, a large lockable ammo box, and a can of CLP. Counting down the days for next acquisition. Perhaps a twin for little “Alice;” nothing like an heir and a spare. Almost done reading Guns, Firearms and Weapons Guide Book for Americans by Tyler Dillon. For shame on me, hiding in the bathroom to read such things. (Gotta email that guy re proofread B4 publish.)

    So busy on the workfront, no time to get much else done. Haven’t even finished my seed orders. Would love to get some lumber bought, painted, & put together for improved garden. Too bad the dh’s first sell-off item was his trailer. Dum. Can’t bring in major dirt & compost acquisitions now. Grumble, grumble.

  72. FreeRangePagan says:

    Good morning!!
    Prepping this week was stocking up on some corned beef, replaced canned veggies, getting some more canning jars, dehydrated and powdered 18 eggs and put up four more liters of water.

    That’s about it. Slow and steady, right?

    • Grumpy Vermonter says:

      FreeRange, Is there a preferred way to dehydrate eggs? I never tried it, but have a dehydrator. Thanks!

  73. Shot the G-2 again with better results than the last time, gonna blame the accuracy issue’s on the casted leg. Bought two 40 oz containers of “OLDE FASHIONED OATS” and wanna try and find some bread recipe’s etc using them. Bought 100 rounds of 30-06 and tried like hell to find .22 long rifle with no success. Bought 50 RDS of 9mm to replace what I shot up. Did some organizing of the gun room and some spring cleaning.

  74. Been away for a quick visit to my sister and bil. Looks like everyone has been busy as usual.
    Built two 4’x12′ raised beds for my sister, she had a couple 4’x4′ beds last year and wants to raise more this year. Got onions and potatoes planted for them and the beds ready for what ever else they want to plant. Bil wanted to put in four more since they had room for them, his family had a big garden when he was young but talked him out of it since sister teaches full time and is workin online for her masters and his lazy retired ass just sits in front of the tv watching old westerns all day, he can’t even tie his own shoes much less work the two beds I just built.

    I also fixed their fence in places and every leaky facuet in the house and replace the rotted base under her kitchen sink. Had a good visit other wise.

    Now if the 70 degree weather I had yesterday will return some time soon I can get started on my own garden. Must have had some sleet last night becuause is saw piles on it on the ground under the downspouts from the rain this morining. Oh well since it is a nice cold rainy day I guess I will finish my taxes and do some laundry!!!!

  75. Millie in KY says:

    Hi, everyone and welcom to the new members!
    It’s been a rough month. I won’t dwell on it but some of you know I lost my job and am seeking another one. I applied at a local university and got a hopeful reply from them. Prayers, please? I tragically lost three of my dogs, a four year old in whelp, no idea why, the elderly nearly 18 year old who was tired and told me it was time to go. Then an 11 year old who had been having minor problems for a while and we just discovered that she had diabetes. We were unable to control it and we tried everything and two kinds of insulin. We let her go be at peace on Friday. It’s been really rough.
    So preps have been small. I got the last of my seed orders in, I went ahead and ordered a lot of heirloom things but will plant more traditional things this year and a few fun heirloom things. My litlte greenhouse is perking the plants away and I even have onions coming up. I’m such a city girl…I had no idea you got onions from seed. I knew you could plant the tiny bulbs and get onions. But…never thought about where the tiny bulbs come from! :) When I was a kid, also clueless, I had no idea that you “made” mayonnaise. I thought it was ground out of a mayonnaise plant or something. Seriously. :)
    DH has begun the big bookcase for the books in the second bedroom. Once that is in and painted I can go through my books and decide what to keep and what to put in the big yard sale. Once the books are organized, I have several dandy wire type of free standing shelves that I bought at Lowe’s about a year ago. I’ll be putting those in that room for more storage space for food.
    I will get my first unemployment check on Tuesday. It has to go to the house payment and I still have a lot of food in the regular pantry, plus some frozen meat. So we are all right for now.
    I found a new church to go to, very small, local and filled with strong conservatives, so am hopeful about having someone to depend on when SHTF. I believe it will be soon. I am filled with worry about do I take the bit of money out of the bank for preps (something valuable and something we need) or do I leave it in there to cover house payments, etc (making it possibly worthless if SHTF). Does anyone else worry about this?
    I do have some good news, another of my girls is pregnant and huge. She has at least 10-12 pups in her, about double the size for her breed. We go in this week for a c section. Will everyone please say a prayer for Tabi’s safety and that of her babies? I would appreciate it so much. I’ve been through too much tragedy this last month. It destroys me every time I lose one of my beloved dogs….
    A positive piece of good information, my niece is moving back in with my sister, along with her husband and the baby. My sis is not well, elderly (she would kill me if she knew I said that) and still working. and by herself. So having someone in the home to help her and keep an eye on her has been a big relief for me. She is about 12 hours away so not like I could run down and get her if SHTF, although I’d probably try.
    Thanks everyone, for listening. I learn from reading what you all do, think “oh we need some of that” or “I must remember how to do that thing”. I did find the article I referenced a couple of weeks ago about making recipes, taking one thing from column A, add two from column b, etc. I will type it up and post it next week and hope that it will be of help to everyone.
    Have a good week everyone and I’ll report on Tabi next time we meet. Thank you all and God Bless you all!

    • HI Milli, Keep the faith, and keep loving Tabi. The others are at the Rainbow Bridge; how can there be a Heaven without our beloved critters? Hope Tabi whelps easily and the pups are healthy and strong. Hoping also the job prospects improve & the outcome is good. Keep doing what you do, that’s good stuff. There will be an opportunity later to do more — no matter what happens or when it happens. Take care of you and yours. That will suffice.

      • I'm A Pret Kat says:

        If my recently lost mini poodle isn’t waiting for me in Heaven, I’m not going.

    • Ms K in Mo says:

      Yes Millie, I worry too about the $ in the bank. I guess it depends on what you have. We’ve been thu some tough times in the last few months also. All I can tell you is make sure you have enough to pay the bills and do a little prepping on the side. I like to think of the “everything in moderation” idea. I save a few bucks when I can, buy a few extra preps when I can but pay the bills first. Making the house payment is first priority. Without the house/property, we are screwed.

    • Grumpy Vermonter says:

      Millie, <> for you! Dam it hurts to lose those furry kids, doesn’t it :( Definitely saying prayers for your Tabi, your family and you! So glad you found a local conservative church – no such animal around me up here in Lib’ville. It is good to find community, especially that kind of community if it’s a good fit for you. As for the bank, keep an eye on what the E.U. is doing in Greece (Cyprus is in the news about their bank accounts). I’m sure our government is contemplating the same thing, wouldn’t surprise me a bit.

  76. Divergal (S Fla) says:

    Ho Wolfpack!

    Its been a crazy couple of weeks with Spring Cleaning, pantry rotation, and gardening.

    Have been going through all the closets and have a boatload of stuff to go – I may go with the BamBam method and get myself an ebay account. Normally I would take it all to goodwill but thats good prepping money I could be making so….

    Got some blackberry and Blueberry bushes that are supposed to do well in South Florida. They were a little on the expensive side so I got 3 of each and figured I would give them a shot. Have more flats of seeds going than I know where Im going to put but Ill figure out something. Have also been trying to figure out what the little yellow bugs are on my brocolli, The Neem isnt getting rid of them so this week Im off to get some insecticidal soap unless someone here has other ideas.

    Bought 20 lbs brown rice, 20 lbs of quinoa (Has anyone stored this for long term? and how?) and assorted canned goods.

    Went through the stockpile and took canned goods expiring in the next few months to the food bank.

    Thats it for me.

    Happy Prepping!

    DG

    • Try dawn dish washing liquid 1 part Dawn to 3 parts water, and spray your plants. If it can stop a deer from eating the leaves off of roses, it might work on your plants.
      A lady taught me to put old banana’s or just the peels at the bottom of your plants, trees, roses. As the plants consumes the peel/banana it provides a food that stops rust on roses/aphids. I saw a difference when I gave it to my fruit trees. I am going to use my Ninja to puree the peels for my garden this year.
      If your tomatoe plants produce great leaves last year an no fruit put a baby aspirin at the bottom of the roots when you put your plants out this year, friend passed that great advice on to us.

    • Can you describe the yellow bugs? Without knowing what they look like, my best guess is aphids. Aphids come in many colors, shapes and sizes.

      Do you have any lady bugs in your garden? They will eat a lot of aphids. If you don’t have any, consider adding some flowers. Good bugs are attracted by flowers, the bad bugs are attracted by the veggies in the garden. Adding lots of compost at the end of the garden year will also help to control bugs next year. Also, if the winter temperatures go below freezing, turn the soil over once or twice during the winter. This will get rid of a lot of bugs that decided to set up home in your garden soil. If it doesn’t freeze in winter where you live, you can solarize them out.

      Don’t spray Seven or any other chemical to get rid of the bugs. Do you really want to eat that stuff? Shoot them off the plant with a blast of water from the garden hose. And besides, Seven isn’t sustainable if the world ends. Learn to use natural or homemade sprays when needed. What will you do two or more years into TEOTW when the Seven runs out?

      I will be happy to give you a permanent solution if you can give me an idea of what the bugs look like. How big are they? How many legs do that have? Do they fly? Do they crawl fast or slow? Where are they on the plants? What do the plant leaves look like?

      • Oops! I didn’t notice that you were from South Florida! You can solarize your soil to keep your soil bug and disease free.

        • Kate,

          I read somewhere that if you keep adding compost and cow manure to your beds, you don’t have to turn over the soil–that the worms will do it for you. What do you think about the no till theory? Does it work? (This will be the second year–so I don’t know how it will turn out.)

          • Bam Bam,

            The worms won’t do it to the extent that it is needed. Did the article you read say to just spread the compost on top of the soil and not to mix it in?

            The soil is turned over for a few reasons. 1. To turn under any weeds to kill them (you can even do this with weeds that have gone to seed – when the seeds are 4 to 6 inches under they won’t germinate. However, this is a double edged sword – they will germinate when they are brought to the top again the year after.)
            2. To help bring overwintering bugs to the top of the soil so the freezing temps will kill them. (That goes for diseases too!)
            3. To loosen and aerate the soil. For example, you will need to loosen and aerate the soil when you pull up the plants at the end of the growing season. Un-clump (is that a word?) the roots of the old plant you just pulled up so next season the new plants have access to that soil.
            4. To mix in new compost. The compost works best when it is incorporated into the existing soil. Let me give you an example, let say you have a disease problem or a bug problem. Doesn’t matter what kind. Compost contains lots of good bacteria that helps to kill the bugs and diseases. You won’t maximize the benefit of the compost if you don’t incorporate it into all of the soil the plant uses. Some bugs hibernate in the soil 4 -6 inches down. The compost won’t get to them to do its work if its sitting on the top of the soil. It will take the worms years to move it all.

            You don’t need a lot of effort here (some, but not a lot). A few shovels worth in the heavy root area from last years plants is really all that is needed. Then the worms can do the rest. And lots of compost encourages the worms to party in your garden.

            • Kate,

              Thank you for the response. What you say makes sense. When I read the Square Foot Gardening book I assumed “no till” meant “no turning over the soil”. Thank you for correcting this misconception.

              • Cheyenne says:

                Bam Bam, That reminds me of my first canning experience. My new mother-in-law, (who never thought my little boy and I were good enough for her son because I had been married before), and sister- in- laws all talked about cold packing. I was so proud of my first dz canned green beans that I sealed and put in the refrigerator to cold pack. I felt very silly and upset when they spoiled.

          • No-till gardening works great if you do it right. I didn’t till at all when I started my beds. And I haven’t tilled in the three years since. I started with hard dirt and I now have wonderful deep, brown, rich earth with (literally) earthworms in just about every handful.

            I used Mel Bartholemew’s recepie (from his book Square-Foot Gardening) to make the initial “dirt” for my raised beds. It’s made up of compost, peat moss, and vermiculite. I mixed it and mounded it up into beds. Then, I mulched heavily and planted into it (push away the mulch to plant seeds directly). The mulch prevents most weeds from coming up, and those few that do grow are easy to pull up (because their roots are in the mulch, not soil).

            Over the years I’ve continued to add compost, mulch, and organic fertillizers (mainly from my chickens). Not overly disturbing the bed means that earthworms, fungi, and soil bacteria are free to do their work…they “till” for you and immensely benefit the plants. Their activites turned my “not good” original dirt into good, fertile earth.

            Tilling makes you feel good (who doesn’t like the look of a freshly tilled garden space) but it’s bad long-term and ends up generating more work in the end (kills/disturbs soil organisms, compacts the earth, results in poor subsoil drainage, more weeds, ect). It’s like popping a zit…you really WANT to, and it gives instant gratification, but it’s not healthy for ya. Tilling intially to start a garden might be OK (though I’d personally just be patient and use the “lasagna garden” method). But I don’t think it’s healthy to continue using it year after year.

            My no-till beds are now much deeper and healthier than they were origionally, even taking into account the amendments I’ve added over the years. Using nature’s own mechanisms to create fertile soil is really the way to go, in my opinion.

            • JS,

              I am not talking about tilling with a machine. You can actually do harm to the overall health of the soil (if you have clay soil like me) when you till with a machine. It it like gardening in a bowl. The water hits the compacted dirt below the area tilled and just sits there – the plants can drown before they ever yield a single piece of fruit.

              I mix all my new compost in by hand. However, I will agree to disagree on your interpretation of all the bad things that can happen when you mix in your new compost. If it was as bad as all that, our ancestors would have starved to death because of poor crop yields and we would not be here now.

              I am familiar Mel Bartholemew’s work and I agree with it. However, I just believe (for my soil) it is better to mix the new compost in a bit before you leave it for the winter (or plant in it in the summer).

              The idea of layering on new compost and mulch is similar to ‘lasagna’ gardening (IMHO).

              To each his own, I tend to mix mine in some before I leave it. But what do I know, I’ve only been a Master Gardner for over 20 years.

              • JeffintheWest says:

                Just a little snarky there, Kate. If JS’s system works, who’s to say it’s wrong? Likewise, if what you’re doing is working for you, more power to ya! To each his own. I don’t think JS was attacking you, just that for JS, no-till gardening is really working out — and that’s awesome.

                • JeffintheWest,

                  Kate is a certified Master Gardener–that’s why I asked for her input here. It was the book Square Foot Gardening that I got the “no till” idea from. But what Kate says makes perfect sense–you do have to mix in the compost and manure. No till does not mean no mixing of the soil.

                  • JeffintheWest says:

                    Yeah, I got that from her response — and I think that’s great. But I never said anything about mixing or not mixing the soil in my response. I just didn’t think it was necessary for her to ram her chops so hard in poor JS’ face. He’s trying hard and sharing the benefit of his experience, not belittling anyone else, so IMHO doesn’t deserve to get slapped quite so hard in return. She could, for instance have gently pointed out that even in a “no-till” method, you still need to do some soil mixing, just to make sure the environment in the soil is uniform and let it go at that, right?

                    • Jeff,

                      Okay–sorry. I didn’t read that into the tone of her comment. It’s so hard to gauge the tone of someone’s comment. You never really know if someone is giving a pointed response or if someone is being terse because they are simply tired.

                    • No snarkyness intended. I haven’t slept in 3 days. That is why the posts have been at such weird hours.

                      That must have been my “Bronx’ coming through. Sometimes my husband has to remind me to put it back in my pocket.

                    • JeffintheWest says:

                      Kate — sorry to hear you haven’t been feeling well. I’ll pray you get a full night’s sleep soon.

                      v/r
                      Jeff

      • Black rosé says:

        Snails, can someone tell me a good nontoxic way to get then under control? I heard marigolds helped so I planted 6 around my newly planted eggplant. Today the marigolds and half the egg plant were gone. I also bought 2 chickens hoping they would eat the snails, they did not. I hate snails

        • Sw't Tater says:

          ….snails,Put out beer in low saucers, or put salt around outside of beds, it melts them..

          • NO salt! You will make any ground sterile.

            Diatomaceous earth will work, also. I heard that sandpaper and crumpled foil will deter snails. Yes, I have heard beer works.

        • It sounds to me that your garden is too wet. Dry it out a bit and the snails will leave. How much Sun does the garden get? How much are you watering?

          Swt Tater is correct that the snails are attracted to the beer. It really works! Although, it is a short term solution. You can use it while you are trying to dry out the garden so new ones won’t come to take their place.

        • k. fields says:

          Black rosé,
          Although I’ve never had the problem of chickens refusing to eat snails, I’ve found I do have to “train” my chickens to eat slugs by first cutting the slugs into small chunks and feeding them by hand. After a few days of the slug pieces offered getting larger and larger, the hens will start searching out live slugs for themselves.
          Maybe your 2 chickens just need a bit of that type of encouragement.

        • Black Rose,
          I used crushed eggshells around my plants, the snails will not go over them. I save my eggshells year round and when I plant in the spring I simply crush them and put them all around the plants.
          I also use the “lasagna” gardening method and love it. I also have the heavy clay soil that GA (I live in N GA) is so well known for and lots of big rocks. Raised beds are the only way to go here. I have converted several people in my area to the raised beds once they see my garden and I tell them how I do it. I just layer in new compost in every year and mulch once the plants are in. I am not a master gardener but I know what works for me. To each their own.

        • JeffintheWest says:

          Here’s a weird one (that actually works). They make this “copper tape” stuff, that you can use to set up a little barrier around the plants you need to protect. You can get it in major feed stores, or, oddly enough, in hobby stores (where apparently it is used to make certain types of jewelry). Try to get the “biggest” size you can (the ones in the feed stores that carry them come in sizes up to three inches across!). I understand it also works well for slugs. Apparently it has something to do with not feeling good to crawl across for the critters that leave slime trails.

          • JeffintheWest says:

            Oh, I should probably point out that Kate is right — at best the copper tape is a short term solution while you get your garden to the right amount of wetness so you don’t have to worry about it any more.

    • ladyhawthorne says:

      I had skinny orange bugs one year and I used the vacuum cleaner to suck them up!

      • Tactical G-Ma says:

        Lol! Ladyhawthorne, I hate vacuuming my house so sure in heck am not going to vacuum my garden. Besides, if DH was to catch me doing that he’d have me committed for sure!

      • ladyhawthorne,

        Now that is a new one to me!

      • Ladyhawthorne,
        I love that idea. I had squash bugs really bad one year and that would have been a great solution. I would then take the bugs to feed my chickens with. Haha take that bugs!!! lol

    • Sw't Tater says:

      Brown rice…I don’t store because the shelf life is much shorter than white rice. make sure you store it in a very cool space… but I would think dry canning, after freezing for 5 days, allowing to come to room temp. I put white rice in freezer, freeze for five days, remove allow to come to rm temp.To put in buckets I place in food safe bags and put oxygen absorbers in. You can also use dry ice in bucket ..instead of o2 absorbers. Put lid on tightly, label.( place label inside, with basic rice recipe).Put two wraps of duck tape around the top of the lid to assure the seal. A five gallon bucket should hold about 30- 35 lbs.
      If you are going to sprout the quiona, to use, I am not sure, but freezing it should mimic winter freeze. If you are going to use it for grain, bread, cereal etc, do it like the rice. for 20lbs, one of those small bakery buckets should do well, they hold about 15 lbs sugar or flour..a recycled gallon wine bottle would do fantastically for a decanter.(so should hold about that much grain.)and it holds 7 lbs of rice. They have lids with plastic liner, so seal well…and a small o2 absorber will go in neck of bottle.When I use these I place moisture absorbers in them from my medications…just give them a quick 10 seconds to nix the moisture.they are samf for meds, so safe for foodstorage, just make sure they are not leaking, and strain them out as you pour out your food.

      • Divergal (S Fla) says:

        Thanks for all the comments, especially about the gardening :) – im trying the dawn detergent method with my mysterious yellow bugs today. Hoping for the best.

        Im also just going to pack up the quinoa the same way I do rice, mylar and O2 absorbers. I didn’t get it for sprouting, Its all part of my new food storage plan since my mom had her heart attacks a few months ago and Ive had to do some revamping.

        Happy Prepping All!
        DG

  77. Prepping got a boost from Costco this week. We have been focusing some on the short term food storage.

    Preps:
    40 pack of AA batteries
    360 ct. disposable forks, knives, spoons
    Two pack of toothpaste
    Two large containers of hand sanitizer
    Multiple cans of black beans in different sizes
    Bunch of jars and bottles of sofrito and Goya mojo
    External holsters for the Glock and Taurus

  78. I know that this is off topic, but the upper Midwest will being going through a blizzard the next couple of days. (MN,SD,ND,WS).

    For those who live down south, think of a Tropical Storm (winds 35-50 mph) with snow blowing so bad you can’t see 10 feet in front of you.
    Wind chill factors -30 to -40’s ?

    Prayers would be great!

  79. FarmerKin says:

    Hello all,

    Spring is in the air. I’ve been busy sprouting seeds and have gotten a few things out in the garden now. Also bought 3 Papaya trees to try my hand at. I read up on them and they are supposed to give fruit the same year you plant, so thought that was a pretty good deal. Bought a fire pit on sale at Lowe’s for $69. I figure this could be useful if the need to cook outside arises. Also got a nice pair of two-way radios at Target that were marked down from $71 to $49. I’ve been wanting to get a pair for some time now so the mark-down was all I needed to make the move.

    Question for the pack. I have a feral cat in my neighborhood that has decided that my raised bed garden makes a nice litter box. I bought some foot tall fencing to put around it but that didn’t discourage him. Also tried sprinkling Cheyenne pepper around the perimeter, but that only worked for one night. Anyone got any other ideas? I may have to call Animal Control to see if they will come trap him. Didn’t really want to have to do this, because cats are good for keeping other critters away, but I just can’t have him digging up my garden. There’s a whole acre here that he can do his business on, but no he chooses my garden.

    Thank you, and stay safe.

    • FamerKin,
      Had same problem 2 years ago. Only the cats were doing their business right outside the front entrance. All we wanted the cats away from the front yard, An acre is a lot of territory to protect.
      Figured out that those darned cats wouldn’t go where there was pine straw or a thick covering of dead leaves but were digging into the bare spots on the lawn. We tried everything and the cayenne pepper did work, Bought 5 poiunds of pepper and then mixed up as needed 1 part pepper to 2 parts flour and spread it with a fine wire sieve. Through trial and error discovered that if the pepper mixture was applied in a 3 or 4 foot wide barrier I had success. Took about a month. Now the offending cats come up to our fence line and detour around. If I see evidence of cat digging I put out another application. I still have 2 pounds of pepper left. Cats do not like cayenne pepper. The only other alternative was to remove the cats and I did not want to do that to someones pet.

      • FarmerKin says:

        Eagle, thanks for the reply. I only made a very narrow sprinkling, maybe 4 or 5 inches wide. I’ll try the 3 or 4 foot wide barrier and see if that does it. Thank you!

      • I use a motion-detecting sprinkler to deter deer, and they work every bit as good on cats and dogs. Harmless, but it really sends ‘em running.

        • JeffintheWest says:

          THAT’s freaking clever. I never thought of that. Any advice on how to rig one up (where to put the motion detector for the best effect, for example)? Depending on the sensitivity of the motion detector, it might work pretty well on birds and squirrels going after your vegetables too (at least in a small plot) — then, if you can train your cat/dog to work with the sprinkler and catch them unawares when they are running…. ;-)

    • tommy2rs says:

      We feed a small herd of feral cats here to keep varmints down and they love fresh turned earth for their version of litter boxes. I use citrus peels and orange oil to keep them out of potted plants and away from the garden. For added incentive, the garden is far enough away from the house I can plink ‘em from the deck with the bb gun without hurting them while providing negative feedback for their ill mannered behavior….lol.

      Last spring I tried turning a small plot and left it bare but for a planting of catnip in the center. The cats seemed to use it instead of trekking out to the garden so I’ll be doing it again in the next week or so

      • FarmerKin says:

        T2Rs, LOL. Very clever idea with the catnip. Hopefully the wider path of Cheyenne pepper will work, if not I may give your idea a try. Thank you.

        • Every winter, I keep a 40 bag of play sand in a 5 gal bucket on the porch to use for the very rare ice we have here. Every spring, I use the sand to fill in little divots in the St Augustine grass. The cats thought I had randomly placed litter boxes for them. So, I sprinkle the sand with red pepper. It has worked for several years. I put red pepper in flower beds or anyplace I do not want cats digging! I didn’t want to kill the neighbor’s cats, so this is cheap and works.

          • I'm A Pret Kat says:

            I had cats using my raised beds, too. I put chicken wire down and let the plants grow up thru it. Cats didn’t seem to like the feel of the chicken wire on their feet as they tried to dig in the soil.

  80. Rabid Conservative says:

    Big week. Received the Sulfa Allergy Antibiotic Survival Pack I ordered from Northwest Medical Preparedness (https://www.antibioticsforsurvival.com/) and the TA-312/PT Telephone I bought off EBay. Now I have two of these phones, so I also bought 1/2 Kilometer of WD-1 phone wire on E-Bay to connect them up when I need to (I’m a former Army Signal Officer, so I know a bit about these). I also received the 26″ barrel for my Remington 887 tactical shotgun, so I can change it into a hunting weapon if I need to. Bought a Powerpot thermoelectric generator and 50+ packs of heirloom vegetable, fruit, and herb seeds. So, added to preps in pretty much every category (food, medical, communications, weapons, and power).

  81. Ms K in Mo says:

    All I managed to get done this week (prepper wise) is get the 2 liter bottle of pop that we drank filled with water and put with the rest. Been kind of slacking for the last couple weeks since I bought a S&W Bodyguard and a few boxes of ammo for it last week. That put quite a dent in my prepper allowance for a while. My next major purchase will be a food saver. I cant wait! I did learn how to make sourdough bread. I made the starter last week and made 4 loaves of bread today. It is delicious especially with my butter that I canned a few months ago.

  82. Buuurr in Ohio says:

    SAR training over here again. Good people. Good dogs. Good woods. Good times.

  83. Orwellian States says:

    1. Purchased 4 apple trees to put out this week.
    2. Ordered some parts for my “new” Ford 8N tractor.
    3. Found and purchased 80 rounds of .223.
    4. Purchased some lumber and in the process of making some small raised beds next to the garden (for asparagus, rhubarb, etc.),
    5.Added more items to food storage.
    After a nasty, wet winter in East TN we will be re-rocking our drive. I figure about 5 large loads for a half mile – the drive really washed and turned to mud this year.

    • Buuurr in Ohio says:

      Hi, Orwellian. Sorry to hear about the drive. If I could some advice in how to prevent this in future would be this. Weeping tile from Lowes or Home Depot. You can get it pre-done now. They have the pipe with the stone in a bag all around the thing and they are about 8-16 feet long from what I saw Saturday. If I were you I would note the areas that washed and had major furrows and channels caused by the water and put the weeping tile there to allow for the easy drainage of water. If it is a muddy type of area I always find it best to allow the water a quick escape before it can do any damage rather then fight the issue. If it is all muddy and a shifting type of dirt you will never beat it short of digging down four feet and putting in thousands of dollars worth of stone.

      Anyways… I would do the weeping tile or even shale stacking if those type of rocks are available to you for quick water evacuation. I would then cover it all with the heavier grade of gravel ( 2 inch should be good and won’t move easily under water pressure) and then I would go with a lighter gravel on stop of that with maybe a road gravel later on in the year depending on how the project turned out.

      I hope I was of help to you. Washouts on ones property are a pain in the rear for sure, I know.

      • Buuurr in Ohio says:

        Wow… sorry about the grammar… Internet Explorer 10 has an auto correct feature and clearly it needs to stay out of my business ;)

      • Orwellian States says:

        My brother-in-law has a backhoe and lives o the next ridge. We are in the mountains and the drive is a winding hill-side. We’ve added several culverts and some ditching. It has simply been a wet winter with a LOT of rain. The work never stops, but spring is almost here. Thanks for the advice.

        • Buuurr in Ohio says:

          Ah… nothing you can really do about that except fix it. My grandfather has a cabin in Northern Canada. We used to put a huge culvert under the bridge where this small stream used to cut through the property. It would ice up or send a log ramming into the works of it every spring melt… all we could do was watch and fix later. Oh well. Good luck.

  84. As M.D. says, I don’t want to have to bug out if i don’t have to. I do have several bug out spots, one is easier to get to than the other.

    I’ve never had a decent go bag but camping survival.com I got one and put together a ready to go, go/bug out bag, pictures here if anyone wants to see and most of all provide constructive criticism: http://www.rednecksurvivalist.com/index.php/entry/campingsurvival-com-bug-out-bag-review

  85. Considering taking a CCR course this weekend

    • Hi Michele,
      Hoping that you would post again. Thanks for the info on the rose hedge.
      You mentioned that you had fenced in your 70 x 100 garden. What did you use? Is it deer proof? We have lots of deer and I do not want to do all this hard work to feed the deer.

      You also mentioned that you had fenced in an acre around your house with barbed wire fence? and then roses on the inside of the fence?

      We are trying to make our location more secure against all
      types.too. Where were you going to put the blackberry bushes?
      Thanks,
      Hannah

  86. Grumpy Vermonter says:

    Wow, so many comments this week – that’s wonderful! Thanks so much to everyone for freely sharing all this valuable information. For prepping this past week, hubby got some 9mm ammo for me, some snap caps for me to practice with, some .22 LR for my upcoming practice at the range and got himself a new item with which he is very happy, but has yet to try out. I’ve been watching Patriot Nurse’s youtube videos and am learning a lot about the medical end of all this. We have some things already on hand,but now have a list of things to tick off for rounding it all out. I’ve got 12 gallon jugs planted with garden veggies sitting out there with about 3″ of snow frozen over and around them, with much more to come tonight thru Wednesday. We live in a 780 sq trailer in a state owned park, so have to really think about how to prep without a lot of weight. I will be dehydrating a LOT come harvest time. The park manager, who isn’t onsite (too good for that, bless her), isn’t keen on people having gardens, but am adding some boxes similar to what M.D. has going in on our front patch of scrubby grass and weeds. Will be a decided improvement, and if she squawks, I can tell her it’s no different than a kiddie pool, except prettier. I can always move them with us, reseed the areas and there you go.
    Have been really studying Kentucky and Tenn. and am a bit concerned about the possible location of a big FEMA camp right smack in the middle of Kentucky. Anyone in the area heard about this? Wrote/called Texas and Kentucky senators again to ask them to keep fighting for those of us who have hopeless cases as our “representatives”. I am SO ashamed of Leahy – what a dirtbag, career politician he is. Am considering starting a local group to fight the creep of Agenda 21 policies here in my area in the form of “wilderness reclamation”, “school excellence” and “water protection”. Yeah, riiiiight. I am not at all politically correct when mad, so am not sure I’m a good person to do this, but don’t see anyone else doing it so maybe…. Am asking God’s direction for this one! Speaking of God, as part of my preps I also began attending a Skype’d prayer meeting through the Tea Party command center online with a lady in Wisconsin. We were the only two who showed up this past Tuesday, but we prayed for America and our family members who aren’t yet aware of what’s really going on in our country. Felt good to do something – and when you’re feeling helpless, who else can help more than the Father?
    Shopped my favorite thrift store and found some great pots to use for gardening and some big, clear “ice buckets” that I’m going to repurpose into coverings over plants that might need frost protection this fall. I ordered more seeds and researched growing information and seed saving information as well. That took a chunk of time… and I have to admit to purchasing some flower seeds, as I do love flowers as well. For really inexpensive seeds, I love The Sample Seed shop in upstate New York. She’s on Facebook and online web store. She always includes extra seeds as well. Don’t know her personally, but do love her seed prices!
    Am getting ready to set up Ebay shop for also clearing out extras to fund purchase of that little woodstove I posted about way back. Our dependence on kero/propane worries me, not to mention how expensive it all is getting. Bought extra canned tomato sauce on sale, pasta and some mixes as well to stash away. I have been mentally re-designing our trailer and we could make our “master” bedroom into a storage room if we move our bed into our living area. I spent a good deal of time this past week coming up with the idea of building a platform of sorts on which we’d have our computer table, a bench and something to hold our printer and computer-related items. Underneath the platform would be our bed, on rollers. The idea is to roll our bed out at night and back in in the am. This would free up our biggest bedroom to be a storage room for food and medical/household supplies. I can begin building the platform as soon as we can buy the supplies needed. Then after the bed is out of our bedroom, we need to figure out some way to shore up our frame underneath. We have the lenghtwise-running joists and the trailer frame is bowing down a bit on either side, lengthwise. I would love to sell this one and start over, but finances won’t allow. So we have to block it up and replace that awful pressboard passing for floor with plywood and then I can do the storage in here. (NOTE: If anyone here in the pack knows how to effectively shore up trailer frames that have the lengthwise joists instead of the better widthwise ones, I’d love to hear from you!!! )
    If we were to sell in the future, it would still be able to be a bedroom, since I’ll be using freestanding shelving. If I were to tie anything to these walls and we had a quake, the shelves would likely take these flimsy walls right down with them!
    Also spent this past week trying to gently get my sister to awake. She’s all involved with a few of the family dramas going on and doesn’t think she has time to deal with anything else. I’m trying to get her to stock up on things “just in case”. It’s frightening to think how little I have when I think of trying to feed all four of us! Gotta prep more. Have a safe week everyone, thank God for all of you.

  87. This last weekend I built a wood frame for a square foot garden, this will be the first year I try this type of gardening. I bought a 50 gal water barrel with spout and filled it up. I also made a $20 brick rocket stove to experiment with but the winds got to crazy to bother with testing it this weekend, maybe later this week we will see how it works.

  88. worrisome says:

    I am a fan of an author named CJ Box. He just released a book called Breaking Point. These books are called “Jo Pickett Novels” and follow a fish and game dude in Wyoming. He has many misadventures back in the woods and he is usually wrestling with his conscience as regards right, wrong, and what his government job expects of him. This latest book however is taking a somewhat political turn as regards Federal Over Reach and specifically regarding the EPA and their abuses. This story is based upon the true story of a family by the name of Sackett in Idaho. There has recently been another couple affected by the disease of EPA abuse/misuse of the law in New Mexico………..sued the the EPA using the Clean Water Act, never mind the fact that they are 25 miles from any running water……..but I digress.

    In the back of the book is an interesting statistical chart which I am going to put in compliments of Mr. Box and the National Wilderness Institute.

    Federal Landownership (Top 12 States)

    State Total Sq. Miles % Owned by Fed Gov
    Nevada 61,548 87.6
    Utah 35723 68
    Alaska 244627 67
    Idaho 34520 65.2
    Oregon 34084 55.5
    California 49842 49.9
    Wyoming 30902 49.7
    Ariz 32228 44.3
    Colorado 25851 38.9
    New Mex 28143 36.25
    Wash 13984 32.8
    Montana 29718 31.8

    Is there any wonder in your mind now why it is so hard to find a good bug out location that you can afford in the west?????

  89. I finally got my garden rebuilt and expanded. I used a decking plastic wood for the beds. It’s quite heavy and should last a long time. I also evpanded,it from 234 square feet to 360 square feet. I have better access noe with a better layout and spacing. You can see it on my blog, gardenforyourlife.blogspot.com

  90. Will have to seriously review my preps after the severe storm that hit us last night. Of course being right in the middle of a kitchen reno does not help! Been without power since 6pm Monday and as of right now still no power 10:30am Tues. We did not have enough gas for the generator to last the night. Thank goodness it was not terribly cold.

  91. I went ahead and added 10 cans of tuna, 3 24-pack cases of water, 4 pounds of beans and 5 pounds of rice, another 6 cans of veggies, 2 12 pack cases of ramen noodles, 5 more boxes of cereal, 2 pounds of oatmeal, 3L of olive oil and 4 more pounds of sugar. I tossed out all expired can goods and getting ready to give away things close to expiring that I’m not likely to use.

    I officially have my pantry stuffed and 5 cabinets stuffed with food. As well as the refrigerator and freezer stuffed. We likely have 2 months of food on hand and 9 days of water on hand. I need to reorganize and find more room for food storage.

    Starting college come Summer, fully enrolled, about to retest and pass the algebra section. Debating on a Costco or Sam’s membership to buy bulk already properly stored beans and rice long term storage since beans is a foreign food here. Also debating on donating extra blankets or storing them in case I need to barter.