What did you do to prep this week?

Before we start with this weeks “what did you do to prep this week” segment I would like to thank K.Fields, Harold D, Tim D and Sergei B for their generous donations via PayPal this week. Thank you all it is very much appreciated. I’m glad you find the blog useful enough to call for a contribution.

If you would like to show your support for what we are doing here there are several ways that you can do that, with some costing no money at all. Read this post to find out how you can help keep The Survivalist Blog running.

Okay, let’s see what did I do to prep this week ?:-)

The first part of the week was spent working on my garden plot, digging in compost and turning the soil. It has been sunny here with unseasonably warm weather contributing to my catching “gardening fever” yep, I’m as excited as Bill Clinton in a room full of White House interns.

The soil I’m starting with here at my new property is of a good consistency, but as would be expected poor in nutrients, so I’ve added compost and I’ve been working on the soil PH level Overall everything seems to be coming along nicely.

But it still may take a couple of years of working the soil and growing in the area to get it in tip-top shape for maximum production.

I also ordered a couple of book through Amazon.com including; “Backyard Homesteading: A Back-to-Basics Guide to Self-Sufficiency” and “Self Sufficiency for the 21st Century“, I also ordered a Marine Raider Bowie Knife and replaced some storage foods that had been used.

Well that is it for me what did you do to prep this week?

Comments

  1. Diver Gal (So. FL) says:

    Hi Wolfpack,

    Well, I thought I would be typing that I did absolutely nothing to prep this past week since I was in France making peace with my in-laws. Or maybe they were making peace with me. However, after reading what everyone else had done, I realized that I gained a bit of learning which is its own prep.

    My in-laws own a vineyard and family farm and are amazingly self sufficient. They have goats and a few cattle, chickens, a fairly large vegetable garden area and of course a few thousand acres of vines. Even though it was winter, there was still tons to do. They have a cellar thats full not just of wine, but all sorts of things they have canned, cheeses, root vegetables… My MIL said they pretty much go to the markets once a month if that. I really wish we had made peace sooner because I spent a lot of the week learning from her…. I even had a mini class in wine-making.

    Now that I’m home I’m gonna play around with the wine making – I have a couple of grape vines that I use for jellies but just for fun… She is also going to email me recipes and such for things she makes from the foods they have on hand.

    I came home pleasantly surprised that my mom had done some of my weekly prepping for me. She bought 26 boxes of cereal, 10 lbs of rice, and filled up 6 – 5 gallon gas cans.

    Speaking of gas, it was interesting to read about the gas prices here. They really went up while I was gone, but to put it into a bit of perspective, with the conversions and whatnot I paid a little over $7.00 a gallon in Paris and a bit less in the countryside areas. Not that it’s any consolation to us here when we are used to far lower prices but still, sometimes we take things for granted.

    Hope this finds everyone well, Happy prepping to all.

    DG

    • After you try some of those recipes, please make sure that you post them for the rest of us? It is always good to have something else added to our ideas. Glad you made peace. ‘Tis a good thing if at all possible!

    • Diver Gal, So glad that you were able to make peace with your in-laws and that you were able to spend time with the MIL learning from her. Also nice to hear that your mom picked that stuff up for you.
      I would also be interested in some of those recipes.

    • welcome back DG…just goes to show…learning is on-going – and we learn from everyone…just soak up all the knowledge.

      How did you find the mood of the people – were they worried about the Euro debt…or are they still going on with their usual routine and schedules…cheers.

      • Diver Gal (So. FL) says:

        Chloe,

        I was mostly out in the country staying at the vineyard and while the family keeps up with the news they arent really worried Euro-wise because of their self sufficiency. That said, they do have concerns about Iran and the Middle East but again they don’t seem to really change their lives or let it rule them.

        When I was in the city (Paris) it didn’t seem like people were overly concerned. We went out one night and there was talk in the club about politics and European finances but it wasn’t stopping anyone from buying 8 Euro drinks. Everything is more expensive than when I lived there part time 4 years ago. And in comparison everything is more expensive there anyways.

        DG

        • DG…yes, things are expensive over there… was shocked at how much groceries cost compared to my previous trips.

          And they earn so little – lucky if they earn 1000 euros p/month…and a trolley full of groceries was over 300 euros.

          I am sad at what I see my cousins experiencing in their country – and give thanks often that my father had the courage to leave after the war and start a new life here.

          So, when I see the prices I pay – yes, it’s expensive too, compared to you guys…it is still nowhere near what they pay over there – compared to their earnings…so I just buy the specials when I can and am grateful.

  2. Wow. I just noticed there are already 707 posts on this week’s wdydtptw and it’s only Monday night. That’s unbelievable. Also seeing lot’s of lurkers converting to pack members too! This is good, folks. Very good. You should be very proud, MD. Looks like it’s becoming more and more obvious this is the best site on the web and the place to be!

    • that, or there are more moles:)

      • cosmolined says:

        rr: NOT. Nobody yanked any chains that I saw this week, just a lot of new folks who are like minded. Cos

        • We have been on our best behavior this week.

          • I noticed the good behavior, Gayle. So boring!! Brohahahaha!

            • Encourager,

              I know . . . boring. I tried to stir the pot a bit by calling a couple of folks here “closet Obama fans”. But no one jumped on that one. I will have to try harder to stir the pot next week.

        • riverrider says:

          cos, i said moles not troles, and i have a smiley face behind it. i love that there are so many new folks getting the courage to post also. one thing though, how did membership jump from 7000 to 14000 in one week? i know another blog that i frequent did a trackback and found HLS was a big number of hits on his site. i was semi-jokingly inferring that some of those 14000 might be located in “the district”.

    • Always good to see new Pack members. Some come and go but that’s life. I am a bit amazed how many new pack members there are, wondering if the DP show brought a few to lurk, people waking up or a bit of both.

  3. my gf is just getting onboard now its very hard for me to get her and the kids to understand justn how serious this is. we li9ve in the city i have lived in the woods my whole life i spent 7yrs in the special forces i have several secure bugout locations in the woods 200mis from our house i tell her every day we are woefully under prepared she saya oh i didnt have the EXTRA money i keep tellin her its not extra its nessesity. how caqn i make her and the kids realize how serious this is ? she wants to stay nat our house i told her no it isnot fesable to try to defend an urban home. big delema any suggestions?

    • r, go on youtube and download vids of the l.a. riots .let them watch that a while, same for eqypt. and explain that once power and water goes, the upstairs neighbors crap will be running down your walls. good luck.

    • cosmolined says:

      Ditto’s with Riverrider. I lived through the L.A. Riots. My youngest son was being born in Korea-town. I was watching out the window at the Hospital. First three hills over was on fire, then two hills over……… It is possible you won’t be able to convince your family. I haven’t. Ridicule is ok when you know in your heart that you have done your best. Airborne!, Cos

      • Cosmolined……
        Which one….Airborne, that is?

        All The Way

        • Hawkeye, 19th Group. I’m second generation. Dad was 82 in WW2. I was straight leg active, 4th Inf. No combat. Cos

          • cosmolined…..
            2nd of the 501PIR, 82nd; 1st of the 504PIR, attached to the 8th Inf Div, Germany; then Hq Co, 17th SF. I’ve not been able to verify but I believe the 17th was merged into the 12th which was then merged into the 19th (or maybe the 12th and 19th was vice versa…like I say, never could verify that). I was a little early for Nam but was in Germany during both the “Berlin Crisis” and the “Cuban Missle Crisis”. Lot of hype in both those events but no bullets flying for me either.

            • Hunker-Down says:

              I found my butt in Stuttgart a couple months after the Berlin wall went up.

            • Hunker Down…..
              I was in Mainz, a little North of you. Our Division HQ was in Bad Krueznach. Got there in Jan 61…left in Jan 63. Loved Germany. Went back, on vacation, in August 73 and the Airborne Regiment was moving out and heading for Italy. It’s my understanding that our base, Lee Kaserne in Mainz Gonsenheim, is now German condos! Time marches on.

          • village idiot says:

            Cosmolined, my uncle was 82nd in WWII, and was killed at Normandy. 456 PRCHT FA BN, 82 ABN Div. is what is on his gravestone. I wasn’t born until 1953, so I never knew him, but since he wasn’t married, for some reason(mainly because I was the one most interested) I ended up with most of his personal items, including his Purple Heart and a Letter of Commendation from the President. I have them framed and on my wall in den.

          • village idiot says:

            I forgot to ask. Is your father still living, cosmolined?

            • cosmolined says:

              village idiot:
              You are totally an outstanding man for honoring your late Uncle, Sir!
              My Dad passed in ’82. I was also born in ’53 too. Cos

      • village idiot says:

        cosmolined, I’m not trying to be nosy, but why do you think your family doesn’t see what is happening? My wife is a country girl, and she has canned and put up food all her life, she is frugal, but she can’t understand what could happen if things keep going the way they are. She thinks I’m a little off. My oldest son is kinda on board, but my youngest son can only think about one thing, and it ain’t prepping. I’m trying to prep for all of us, and it’s discouraging at times.

        • cosmolined says:

          village idiot:
          My oldest son is 20, he runs on hormones. His brother is 19 and lives in an on-line video world. The wife just refuses to even consider basic earthquake preps here in Lost Angeles!
          I know how discouraged you can get. Trust your gut, friend. God gaves us brains to use. Perhaps our military time has provided a broader view of the world…. God Bless!, Cos

    • richard…welcome on board…

      just do what you can – in the direction you know you need to prep in…

      many pack members are also in your shoes…so you are not alone –

      can share your journey with us…I did not have anyone I could share my prep journey with either – until I started posting on this site…has really helped me a lot…

      when stuff happens that you are worried about…a month, a year from now…who knows…at least you will have had that time to plan.

      When it is time to activate those plans…your gf may then finally see the wisdom of your prepping activities…

      you know what to do…use all the available time now to its maximum benefit…seize the day…

      as you state you are ‘woefully unprepared’…no time like the present to just start…

      any questions – lots of like-minded people right here that understand where you are coming from…cheers.

    • Richard, you said ‘her and the kids’ – are they your kids, her kids or both? How old are they? It does make a difference in how they react to what you say. Watching the videos online is a great idea; explaining to them that when TSHTF, during Katrina, any riots, etc. that people don’t behave like they normally due. They de-evolve (if that is a word) down to the lowest common denominator – usually immoral (rapes, etc), destructive brutes. If you can get them to understand that, you can slowly bring them along.
      I hate to ask, but how devoted/committed are you and your girlfriend to each other? There has to be that underlying trust between you, in order for her to accept what you tell her. If it is not there, if she implies you are nuts, you may be better off prepping for yourself, with extra added in case they get on board. But, please, watch your OPSEC.

  4. Not very exciting but we built an automatic waterer for the chicks and got them into their coop/run for the first time. They’re out all day but we still bring them in at night as they still haven’t lost their downy feathers yet. By Friday they should be ready to be in the coop fulltime. South Fl weather is easy this time of year!

  5. Read the Ace sale paper and they have seed packets at 4 for $1 until March 8th.

  6. SIG P225/P6 owners got this updated from Cheaper Than Dirt:

    Sig P225/P6 9mm 8rnd. Factory Magazines. Old Style Mags. Limited Qty.(USED)

    Price $24.99ea….

    Order at http://www.copesdistributing.net/p225p6-blue-factoryused-p-4541.html

    Phone orders at 1-866-523-2673..

    I know a few people own this model so thought I’d post it.

  7. This week for preps:

    Food:
    12 cans of chicken
    6 cans of salmon
    6 bottles of ketchup
    30 cans of chef boyardee
    20 cans of assorted soups
    40pudding cups
    20 boxes of different crackers
    20 packs of gum (completly free) If you have a cvs mentos gum is on sale for .99 or 3 for $3.00 and there was a dollar coupon.
    4 boxes of easter candy (free with coupons)
    14 – 12 packs of toilet paper
    6 boxes of kleenex
    10 toothpaste
    20 assortment of spices (bogo)
    Big container of coffee
    2 cases of water
    8 boxes of baking soda
    6 containers of salt
    Valentine socks less then .50 cents a pair!
    A new set of see through drawers for preps at our bug out location. I love these I can see everything that is in them!

    Wondering if anybody could point me towards a good solar charger for the kids dvd player? They love to watch movies.

    My family for the first time ate the Bear creek brocolli and cheese soup and they all loved it! I am so happy and am going to get a ton of it, they are all very picky! I did what the directions said about adding, so I added the sour cream, 2 handfulls of cheese, broccoli, chicken, and I added potatos. It was so good!

  8. MtWoman (N Central Texas) says:

    I want to take a minute and Thank M.D. for hosting this blog, and dealing with the PROFOUND amount of posts, comments, sub-comments, sub-sub-comments, etc. It is really a JOB! From what I can see, You have to look at each post & comment and approve them, right M.D.? A gargantuan project with this prolific group!

    Truly I THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart. I am very grateful for the information and camaraderie here, and you’re the maestro.

    I can’t send a donation, but I can say: THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU.

    And ask: is there anything we can do to make it easy on you? Would it be easier if we didn’t post so many ‘one-liner’ comments? Just tell us…..

    • cosmolined says:

      MtWoman:
      I’ve been lacking in saying thanks too. (Thanks for reminding me.)
      M.D. THANKS! You have a wonderful site that has allowed me to refocus on keeping my family safe. I’ve also met a bunch of like minded folks who help me realize I’m not crazy for preparing for bad stuff that can happen in order to protect my sons, whether they want it or not. LOL, God Bless You M.D. ! Cos

      • Without M.D. we’d all be lone wolves trying to do it on our own, not realizing there are other like minded people who want to prep practically and on a budget.

        Thank you M.D. for the work you do keeping this site up and running.

      • I agree…thanks MD for moderating the site so diligently…the posters here are like a family to me…

        and Cos, yes – so good to be able to discuss the whole range of ‘prep’ topics – week after week…I don’t tire of it…and I have been so energetic just trying to keep up with everything.

        • riverrider says:

          oh yawl jest quit it! you’ll blow m.d.’s head up so big he won’t even recognize little ol’ us anymore, and start putting commas in his name and such, and promoting big budget gizmos and moving to timbuktu that he owns already… LOL. i try to say thanks only every other week so he don’t go getting full of himself:)

          • cosmolined says:

            riverrider: People don’t really talk like that in real life, do they?! LOL, Cos

            • Cosmo,

              Well, the further south you get, the worse we talk. If I ever had to go up north, folks would hear by accent and think I was an ignorant hick. I’d have to say, “Hey! That’s Dr. Ignorant Hick” to ya’ll folks.”

            • Nuttbush says:

              cos, come south and you can see for yourself but take my word for it, those of us who grew up here do talk like that. Sad to say, too many of the young kids talk 90 miles an hour and are losing their Southern accent. I hate it because to me, the different regional accents in the US are something to celebrate. I love hearing accents, think of Jeff Foxworthy, his is great.

              I list my language as Southern English.

            • riverrider says:

              cos, hehehe, the further up in the hills you go, the more like that it sounds. but don’t confuse local dialect with ignorance. though many up there are not so highly educated, they are sharp as a tack and have more common sense than a building full of politicians.

            • cosmolined says:

              Everybody:
              I was just joking! Nothing is sexier than a woman with a Southern accent…… Cos

            • Nuttbush says:

              cos & rr: back in my “young and purty” days I dated a guy who lived in NJ. I went up to visit him once and his friend told my date he just “loooved” my southern accent and shivered when he said it. I thought the guys wife was going to belt him right then but most of the night she wouldn’t even talk to me. Some women would be offended, I thought is was kind of funny.

  9. Candy in Nebraska says:

    Okey I can’t wait for Saturday to roll around again. DH and I got some very good news today. I was able to get a job with the road construction going on 8 miles away. I wont be working over 14 hours but the pay is full time pay. $350.00 a week for around here that is dam good money. especially for so little of hours.
    Withthis I am still able to watch my Grandson, and watch Mother and eep Dh from killing Mother.
    Now we are planning on what bills to get paid off and what to buy 1st for a major prep. Bills first because most of the companies have been working with us for 3 yrs since DHs accident. I am so grateful they have so they are first. DH says maybe go with the solor power I have been hounding him about or maybe a generator. I guess we shall see.
    I am just glad for all the comments on here it helped keep me from one heck of a depression knowing I was not the only one having problems.
    Thank You all .

    • village idiot says:

      You seem like a very nice person, and I’m happy for you. Troubles come to all of us, and it’s not the troubles that make the person, but how the person handles the troubles. It’s a nice problem to have when you have to decide which good thing you would like first. I’d go with the generator first, then the solar, but you know your situation best. From what I see, I believe you already have sound judgment.

    • That is great news, Candy. Congratulations on the new job.

    • Candy, that is just great news on the job..congratulations. I can almost feel your excitement!
      Blessings!

    • great news candy…just goes to show..things can get better on a personal level..

      even if we can’t control the bigger picture..we can still do some things on a smaller level.

    • Wonderful news, Candy! “In this world you will have many troubles; but fear not, I have overcome the world.” paraphrased! I agree that this great group helps us all cope.

      • Candy in Nebraska says:

        Ty all.With Dh getting into the accident really put us in a bind and when it first happened I was smart and stocked up. have for years but really hard at that point. Well since october of 2011 we had only been recieving $235.00 from the insurance company which we are still fighting with, But with all the great recipes and stuff from everyone here I managed to make our stores last for a very long time.
        Now that a job is coming up I feel a huge stress being lifted, and we are making plans and more plans.
        I believe it was Lint who told my daughter what to look for when she catches rabbits we were not sure so we had a neighbor look at her first catch and Neighbor said it was safe to butcher. The Neighbor even gave us a butchering lesson even though we already knew, but he is the Grandpa type so we sat back and listened and watched.
        M.D. Thank you for all your hard work with this blog to help us less educated.

  10. Digital_Angel_316 says:

    WYOMING NARROWLY DEFEATS MEASURE TO PREPARE FOR APOCALYPSE

    CODY, Wyoming (Reuters) –

    “I guess a lot of people think if you’re trying to prepare for a disaster, it makes you seem crazy,” co-sponsor Kendell Kroeker said. “I was interested in it mainly because I don’t think there’s any harm in being well-prepared.”
    The bill would have funded contingency planning to guide Wyoming through “a situation in which the federal government has no effective power or authority over the people of the United States,” as well as disruptions in food and energy supplies.

    One option the bill contemplated in the event of a rapid collapse of the U.S. dollar was “the ability to quickly provide an alternative currency.”

    http://news.yahoo.com/wyoming-narrowly-defeats-measure-prepare-apocalypse-013100302.html

    • riverrider says:

      d, virginia talked about the same thing but got a smackdown letter from the feds implying that alternate currency would be seen as counterfieting and aggressively enforced. unfortunately , my gov gave in. sic semper tyrannus.

  11. village idiot says:

    MD, is there a way to send you a contribution? I don’t have paypal, or a credit card. I got rid of credit cards a couple of years ago. Do you have a mailing address like a post office box?

  12. Hunker-Down says:

    A little OPSEC.

    How to remove your search history from Google.

    http://www.valuewalk.com/2012/02/how-to-stop-google-from-collecting-your-web-history/

  13. I know this is last minute but just received info on this:

    The state of Georgia has a House Bill pertaining to the right to grow and raise your own food. It is called House Bill 853. This bill is being held up in committee by groups working for cities and counties who want to CONTROL our right to grow or raise food on our own property. Please go to this website to send an email to voice your opinion on this.
    http://www.gafoodrights.org/42001.html

    You don’t have to be a Georgia resident to do this. Please help.

  14. Okay, I, too, have gotten the clean-it-out bug! It must be the weird winter weather we have been having — early spring cleaning?? I cleaned the office out, including the files in my old roll top desk. My hubby was also cleaning out…we filled about 15 plastic grocery bags with shredded paper.

    What did I do to prep this week? Ordered 9# organic brown sugar (will split some with son); 3 large cans KLIM Full Cream Dry Milk; Organic Coconut Oil; Tanglefoot Moth Traps; all from our food buying club. Been having trouble with our main supplier to the club, no orders have been processed for the past 3 months so when/if this order comes it will be huge.
    I also cleaned/sealed hardwood floors in three rooms and two hallways. That is not really prepping, but I wanted to try this new product that is applied by hand, so actually can use that WSHTF so I guess it is prepping, lol.

    Told my son I want a worm farm for my birthday in May. He got a real kick out of that. I am going to try something new (for me) to build up the soil in my sandy garden. I am going to roto-till a goodly amount of leaf mulch from last fall into the soil, then cover it with about 1/2 inch of newspaper, then a cardboard layer topped with straw. Let it decompose before planting my potatoes. Have had lousy potato crops for about three years. I am also planning on doing this where I plant my hills for winter squash. Does anyone have any more suggestions, re adding anything to the layers or adding other supplements to the soil before I begin??

    Oh, good news, I guess…son and hubby are now talking about renting a Bob Cat, not buying one. I think the $$$ finally got them to thinking straight. I told them the gate comes first, then the fencing by the gate, then the gardens including the raised bed they will make. Hated to burst their bubble….lol. If son wants to pay for an extra day to build up the shooting range, go for it!

    Just wanted to say how much I appreciate M.D. and the Wolf Pack. It is always such a stress reliever to come here and get advice from the Pack. I can ask anything and not have to worry about keeping OPSEC regarding businesses, people close to home. Thanks everyone!!!!!

    • Encourager,

      I have a compost bin. Here are a few things you might consider, coffee grounds, banana peels and eggs shells. Any fruit or veggie peelings or waste (that hasn’t been cooked and doesn’t have oils on it) can be put in your soil as well. Do a Google search for “honey hole”.

    • Encourager,
      I posted this link somewhere in this week’s wdydtptw for someone else, but here it is again: http://www.backtoedenfilm.com. May I suggest that you don’t till your garden if you’ve already done it once. It’s back breaking work, but pull or hoe the weeds with distubing the soil layers as little as possible. Once clear, layer an inch or two of compost on the top and the leaves to hold moisture in. Go to a local bait shop and pick up red wiggler and earth worms and put them right in the garden. Earth worms go deep and wigglers stay closer to the surface. But worms will need the compost and leaves or mulch to live and eat.

      Have you had your soil tested at all? If not, check out your local extension office or google for soil testing in your area. It only costs a few dollars, but so worth it. You should get a list of suggested amendments back with your results depending on your readings. From that I know I need to add lime after each planting season. I also sprinkle a little wood ash. Check your local area for compost – local farms, friends with chickens or goats, mushroom farms. The best compost I got was from our local sheriff’s office from their horse stables and I have been using that exclusively and my garden is loving it. I am brewing my own compost from chicken coop litter and kitchen scraps but won’t have enough for this season. Check out the movie link and let me know what you think. I’ve just experimented with this method on one of my 4′ x 16′ raised beds this season to see how it works.

  15. Mrs Prepper says:

    Taking MT Woman’s advice, I decided to change my username and I’m sorry if I missed responding to anyone who was so kind to welcome me to the pack and to give advice and tips in my last few comments. I responded to some and not others (my need to be nice and good manners is killing me not to respond to everyone–please forgive me). Wow, yesterday was a busy busy day for me–came home late and my email was blown up. That was alot of comments on WDYDTPTW. So I searched a little further outside my area for a thrift shope and found 6 small canning jars (25 cent each?) but no collars or lids, but it’s a start. Bought 3 wooden spoons 25 cents total–will use when I attempt my first batch of soap. And also bought 4 plastic milk crates for a $1–I hear they make good boxes for chickens and they clean up easy. Can’t use them now but when I get my next place, it will be a close race as to who moves in first…me or my chickens.
    Did my usual “cherry picking” at my 5 favorite stores–I got some great deals (20 lbs rice $8.99) and campbell soup for 35 cents a can. And Classico Spag Sauce $1 jar (I hear I can use those jars for canning) so I bought 24 jars. Chicken breast 99cent lbs. I’ve really vamped up my coupon clipping and created a nice grocery binder with a running list of “rock bottom” prices of the various products I normally purchase (with a few new prep related items added) and combined with my coupons, I saved quite a bit. Takes most of the day to split up the shopping to get all those loss leader items, but separating the meats into freezer bags has packed my freezers to max capacity. Can’t wait to get my canning equipment so that I can begin utilizing my huge storage room in the basement instead of my freezer space–I’m almost tempted to buy it new but I don’t want to rob my grain mill fund..decisions/decisions. Found a buyer for some of my useless crap that has no prep purpose; she thought it was a bargain and now I put some of the money towards my grain mill purchase and some allocated to garden container funds. All things considered, I think CG will work for me and hopefully keep the NHOA association off my back b/c other options for my yard and soil are either impractical, too costly and/or completely disallowed by my NHOA. I can’t believe the silly gadget oriented, “latest this-n-that” stuff that I purchased over the years (back when my income was doubled and still clueless about SHTF)–the prepper stuff I could have bought–smacking my forehead! Cannot wait for spring to have a yard sale to unload all this useless junk–did I really have to buy a big bulky ice making machine for the counter? Seriously? Hope everyone has a wonderful week and most importantly, be safe and healthy

    • Mrs. Prepper,

      I did forget to mention that there is one specialized thing you will need to start canning–the canning utensils. You can pick them up at Walmart for about $8.

      Here’s the amazon link.

      http://www.amazon.com/Ball-1440010720-Utensil-Set/dp/B001NNJ42I/ref=sr_1_sc_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1330550074&sr=8-1-spell

      • Texas Nana says:

        Mrs. Prepper
        Great buy on the canning jars at the thrift store, don’t worry about them not having bands or flats, has you can buy them. The jars are the most expensive, I love finding jars at thrift stores. You heard correctly about the Classico jars, my DH calls them chili jars as I love to can my chili in them. Just check the threads on the jars, you learn which ones can be reused as canning jars. Good luck!!

        • Mrs Prepper says:

          Tx Nana,
          I hoped it was a good price and thought what the heck. Glad to hear the info on the Classico jars was correct–now that I found this site, I kinda don’t really believe any info til one of my new family experts confirms it hee hee. At a $1 a jar the sauce was a great deal but being able to reuse the jar for canning, now that’s a super deal!

      • Mrs Prepper says:

        Gayle,
        I got copy of the Ball book on preserving from library and skimmed thru it (it’s been busy couple days so I’m really behind on things) and realized that the lids cant’ be re-used. Wow, that seems very expensive and counter productive but what do I know at this point. I’m guessing they cant’ be that expensive, otherwise no one would bother. I’m picking up that start kit from Walmart tomorrow cuz at that price I think it’s permittable to purchase new. I wasn’t sure if the price on that little jars was good but I thought, what the heck. I asked the cashier if they usually get any kind of canning equipment and she said it just varies and you just have to come and check things out (30 mins drive one way so not sure about just drive and see).

        • Kelekona says:

          I haven’t been canning that long so I’m still using the lids that come with the jars, but a quick web-search reveals that fifty cents per lid might be the expensive side, packs of a dozen. Try grocery stores or hardware stores.

          The rings are reusable. I’m assuming that when I put cleaned lids back on the jar just for a dust-free seal, I’m not poisoning myself.

          Check out tattler lids. They can be re-used, claiming indefinately. I think some of the other people here have actually used them.

          • Kelekona,

            When you empty a jar, throw away the lid. Keep the jar and the ring. Buy the 12-packs of new lids. When you put the jars away, put a NEW lid on the jar. You keep the inside of your jars from getting dusty and you know how many jars you have lids for when you do your next canning thing. You shouldn’t pay more than a couple of dollars for a 12-pack of lids. Go to Walmart or even look at your grocery store. If you wait until canning season is over you can pick up lids half price.

            • Kelekona says:

              Okay, what’s on a used lid that can kill me? If it’s a risk that I’ll use if for canning again, I write on it with permanent marker. I have more issue with wasting a new lid on candy than having an old lid on it.

            • Kelekona,

              If you reuse a lid, the jar may not seal properly. Or even worse, it may seal well enough so it passes the pick up by the lid test, but it may not hold a seal. For the money, using a new lid each time is worth it.

            • Kelekona says:

              Ms. Prepper, try a propane-powered burner? Wait, I think there is a specific warning about using outdoor burners with canning equipment.

              As far as used lids, I don’t use them for sealing uses. It’s more of an alternative to tupperware.

          • cosmolined says:

            Ditto to Keklona: Lids here at Smart and Final are $2 for a dozen. There is also a reusable lid called a Tattler Lid that you can find on the internet. (Because you are just starting out, I’d suggest going with the one time use to reduce the variables.) Cos

          • I found some lids at the dollar general or family dollar (cant remember which) 12 lids for $1. I am still looking for my jars *sigh* everywhere (even ace) is out of them right now. But I figured I had the money and will eventually need them so went ahead and grabbed about 6 of the boxes of lids.

            • Mrs. Prepper says:

              TG,
              I will def check out my DStore. I figured those lids couldn’t be that much considering most wouldn’t bother with all the hassle if the cost was high. Having never bothered with canning before, I was completely clueless about pricing. First time this week I priced at Gstore and it’s was ridiculous price for those jars but I did add the info to my RBP (Rock Bottom Pricing) Index sheet in my coupon binder so that I can track costs of these items on my weekly shopping hunt. Although I’m still researching about using press cooker on my flat top elec stove. I am determined to find a way (safely of course) to start this canning for my goal of canning meats b/c freezer space is maxed out. My DH is a meat/potato guy so 6 days we have chick/pork/beef and 1 day fish…would love to make fish 2 days week, but salmon and haddock is $$$. As last resort I may ask my mom if I can use her gas stove but then I wouldn’t be able to do the quantity as much as I’d like to but at least it would get me some experience at it and who knows, maybe I could convince her of the merits on canning?

        • Texas Nana says:

          Mrs Prepper
          Here’s the deal on jars from thrift stores, reusable Classico jars, jars your mom/grandmom/aunt or whoever gives you jars, if a canning band/ring with a NEW canning flat/or tattler reusable flat will screw on and tighten up you can reuse the jar.
          I have inherited jars, mom/grandmom/MIL/aunt, you name them I get the family jars
          I have thrift store/craigslist ball/mason/golden harvest/longlife/ altas/ if the jar is “embossed” most likely it can be used to can in,
          I have classico pasta sauce jars, when DIL has a BOGO coupon for Publix, she buys classico, I don’t buy that brand because, I’m not paying $3.00 for a jar of pasta sauce. No Publix where I live, and no one here ever runs it on sale. It’s cheaper for me to buy new canning jars than it is to buy Classico sauce. I bought 2 new cases of regular mouth quarts today. I’m running low on jars, and gardening season is here, so I’m buying a couple of cases every week or so. My local Wally world was extremely low on canning jars, had to take DH to the doctor on the far side of town, stopped at a different WW, and bought the jars. I do know that the DIL had 2 different sizes of Classico, one jar was reusable, one not, I’m sure my jars are 24oz size. My other thought, is that you made whale of a buy on the sauce, even if the jars are not reusable. If you grow your own tomatoes, count the following cost, your water, a regular size canning flat cost me 14 cents each, your spices, onions, mushrooms, garlic, you are just about at a $1.00, don’t forget your fuel to cook the sauce, and the fuel to can the sauce. This is how I look at my canning verses what is on sale locally. I hope this hasn’t confused you, remember the first year of canning is your most expensive, as you have to buy jars, pressure canner, or water bath canner, your hardware so to speak. I’ve been lucky I have 4 pressure canners, 1 water bath canner, I only purchased one of these and it came from a thrift store. I’ve had to replace a couple of gaskets, and the one that I got at the thrift store I had to replace the pressure gauge. This year I’m replacing the gauge on my DH’s grandmother’s pressure canner, why you ask, it’s old, and it hung up on me, I think, one time last year, better safe than sorry. I look at this as normal maintenance. I would love an All American Canner, but that’s not in the budget. My DH is in charge of watching the gauges when we are canning, and yes I’ve had 4 pressure canners going at once. Not bragging just stating fact, whether it’s gardening season, or deer season, you only have so much time to get things done.

          • Texas Nana says:

            Oh!! I forgot I want to give the Wolf pack info on buying canning flats in bulk. I purchase flats by the pound, from:
            Dutchman’s Store
            Cantril, Iowa
            319-397-2322
            I found out about the Dutchman store, on a gardening chat site, I was told they don’t have internet, just phone service as they serve the Amish, and/or Mennonites.
            I called them found out their current price, gave them my credit card number, they shipped the next day. I’ve ordered a few times now and never had any trouble. The price including shipping, for the last time I ordered works out to about 14 cents each for regular, an d 23 cents each for wide mouth. A sleeve of regular flats are 4.5 pounds about 348 flats, and wide flats are 6.1 pounds about 288 flats. I order my last flats in Jan 2012, they were $41.00 for regular, I didn’t need wide mouth so didn’t check price. I ordered 2 sleeves of regular, the shipping was $13.15.
            I don’t work nor am I affiliated with the Dutchman’s store, but I did get great service, and a good value for my dollar. Hope this helps the Wolf pack canners!

            • Mrs. Prepper says:

              Tx Nana,
              Oh my gosh, thanks for the info on Dutchman’s–that sounds like RBP to me..if I understand the pricing. Little confusing about price by the pound though. When you state 4.5 pounds about 348 flats–that does mean 348 jars? 14 and 23 cents a piece, including shipping? That’s incredible. I would think shippng would be expensive, given the weight of the jars. I think my hunt is over–I can’t imagine finding a better price than that. Is that reg pricing or special promo? Now I gotta figure way to convince my mom to use her stove without having my extended family thinking I’m still prepper-crazed. I’ll have to come from the savings angle–she thinks I’m obsessed with the cherry-picking I do at my store with my extra Club card shopping hunts. Not sure if that term is local or not–but that’s what they call it here–when you only purchase the lead loss items in a store sale. My dad is gonna be the hard one to convince–he’s an energy miser (which is a good thing–I learned alot from his energy-frugality over the years) so he won’t be too happy about my using the stove and heating the house during the summer–oh that def won’t be allowed–winter will be easier to convince him…I just gotta figure out a fair trade-off for the use of his gas…hmmmm….he sure does love my crockpot BBQ chicken. I am kicking myself for making DH switch my gas stove to that elec flat top–darn! I never realized that I would be limited by the type of stove top I had when canning.

            • Mrs. Prepper,

              Ask your parents what kinds of things they would like to try home canned? Do they like salsa or bread & butter pickles. You could say that you are getting into canning because you read about all these genetically modified foods–like strawberries with frog DNA and things like that. You could give them some of what you can in exchange for using their stove. Your mom might like the stuff so much she springs for some of the produce.

            • Mrs. P.,

              Another idea would be that since you already have the gas line, buy a used gas stove and put it on the porch. Call it a summer kitchen.

            • Lantana says:

              Mrs. Prepper, in my neck of the woods, a ‘flat’ in canning is just the flat part of the lid (as opposed to the ring), not the jar.

          • Texas Nana,

            Ugg. Last week Classico was BOGO and you could use two $1 off coupons. So I paid $1 and a few cents for two jars of sauce. I picked up eight jars. (I already have some in storage.) I will use the cheap sauce to make lasagna but when it comes to Spaghetti, I love red pepper Classico. Yum.

            • Mrs. Prepper says:

              Gayle, great deal too–sounds like your store’s reg price for Classico is a pretty darn good EDP (everyday price). My reg sale (not RBP but better than EDP) that pops up every couple weeks is 2/$4 so your BOGO sounds like reg price is hovern around $2 a jar? Wow, that’s a great EDP. Most stores only do BOGO based on EDP. I LOVE the Spicy Red Pepper and the 4 Cheese…yum. Our store brand is good too but if I can get Classico at RBP I load up. I also like the cheese blend Ragu–it goes on sale alot but not many coupons and not really a RBP without a coupon so I don’t get it as often.

            • Texas Nana says:

              Mrs Prepper!!
              I not sure what RBP is.
              I’m not sure you understand or if I misunderstand you….. I order FLATS ONLY, from the Dutchman store. Flats only cost 14 cents for regular mouth, and 23 cents for wide mouth. I hope I have cleared this up for you.

          • Lantana says:

            It ain’t braggin’ if it’s true, Texas Nana!

          • Mrs. Prepper says:

            Tx Nanna,
            Thanks for all the info on the jars/lids. I read the Ball book and it described the shapes of the jars (rounded shoulder etc?). That immediately got confusing but then I only skimmed thru it. I hope to sit down and give it thorough read this weekend as it’s just been tremendously hectic week and my shopping hunt was extremely time consumed this week b/c of all my newly added items to my Coupon Binder and it was exceptional good bargain week for me with almost all 5 of my reg stores had fantastic leader loss items that I also had mfg coupons and/or store matching coupons–this only happens couple times a year so making multiple trips to use up all 3 sets of my Club cards at each location takes sooo much time and then putting it all away–sigh–that’s the tough part, but knowing that I got almost all the items near free or at RBP is worth the time and effort. Wow, that’s a shame your Classico is so high–my stores reg run sale of $2/4 which I will get sometimes, but mostly I buy the store brands as I need them (I have no brand loyalty) since their reg price is a good price, but when I see a brand that is at my RBP in my binder, then I load up. I got lucky with the Classico this week b/c of a loss leader prcing and combined with store doubler s for any item but 8 limit–that’s when my 3 club cards pay off great–I have one in my name, DH and my mom–takes 3 different trips but I only do this when the items is super great deal (free or below my RBP). Combining that I can also use the jars for canning, that was my Whoo-Hoot! moment. I will be on the hunt for another Classico deal like that again–arrrgh! We don’t think we have a Wally World close by but gonna do a search just to see. I thought the prices in Walmart were kinda high here so I didn’t buy. 4 pressure cookers? Oh my, I sooo have PC envy right now. We don’t really do alot of jellies but I know it’s baby steps and I gotta start there to begin my canning journey, but it just seems like a waste of time/product since we don’t use jelly all that much and my RBP for jelly at store is extremely low, but if I gotta, I gotta. So the All American Canner is what you recommend? Is there a preferred size if one’s budget allows? And other than volume, is there advantage to getting various sizes or just largest you can afford?
            Thanks for all your wonderful advice and help

            • Copperhead says:

              Mrs. P,
              I don’t have time right now to read if you got an answer about the AA canner. My stove hood is too low to use the big canner…so be sure about that if you have a hood to your stove. I would sure like to bigger one to get more canned at a time, but no go for it in my kitchen.

        • Mrs. P.,

          Go to walmart.com and select a particular Walmart location. Then see if the store has it in stock. My local Publix has jars and lids in stock regularly. Walmart does tend to be hit and miss. For the cost of gas, I would consider ordering the utensil set from amazon, unless you have other business in town.

          A 12-pack of lids is like $2. Everyone gets them for me for Christmas. So I have boxes of the stuff.

          • Mrs. Prepper says:

            Gayle,
            We are like Walmart central…we have several so I’m always passing one it seems wherever I’m traveling and usually they are very cheap but I thought the jar prices were high–I mean glass jars at almost a dollar a piece…that just seemed high to me and now it’s fired my spark for a challeng…lol. I did go yesterday and get the utensil set just because I was passing anyway and was under $9. And I found a happy surprise in my cooking drawer–I have been using a red canning funnel and didn’t even realize it. It was on closeout for like 20cents and I needed a funnel at the time and I thought, wow this thing has a huge neck on it–would be perfect for pouring the Splenda (I use the store brand but I still all it that) in my brewed tea as it’s so fine it hangs up in the neck of my “normal” funnel. Funny how I was so completely clueless about canning and equipment…I love that funnel and have used for lots of things so when I bought my starter kit at Walmart, I got a good chuckle at my own expense…duh me! So now I have 2 canning funnels. Oh, and the Christmas gift idea–that’s is awesome….I never know what to say when relatives ask b/c you never know what’s in someone else’s budget range and the lower cost items are usually taken care of–this would be ideal as I would surely acquire quite a few as everyone can afford $2. Yay

    • Candy in Nebraska says:

      Here at thrift stores the canning jars are $.50 each and to be honest you want to start out with new rings and lids then just watch your rings for rust dings and stuff the ring are reuasable .
      That was a very good buy on the jars wish i could find them like that..lol

      • Mrs Prepper says:

        Candy,
        Thanks for confirming prices were good deal–learning by seat of my pants here. I’m a serious coupon clipper (not like the extreme show–Hate that show–not the people, but the show–that show has killed couponing for us reg folk). Now you have to buy 3,4, and sometimes 5 items to get that same 50 cent or $1 off anymore and the exp dates on coupons are shorter now too–I know it’s cuz of that darn show. I do “cherry pick” every week. Its an all day ordeal but since I really vamped it up, I’ve noticed a huge savings on my grocery bill–zaps my time for 1 day to 1 1/2 days but I think it’s worth it and I like the challeng. A while back I began noticing food prices soaring (think that’s what opened my eyes and woke me up to SHTF) so I started a pricing category for my coupon binder and began noting prices of regular items I purchased. That began my RBP (Rock Bottom Price) Front Sheet for my binder. I check these prices at every store I frequent now–that allows me to know when one of my regular items is at it’s absolutely lowest price and that’s when I try to stock up–if it’s not at my RBP, I don’t buy it, unless I really have to..if it’s a crucial item and I’m out but I try not to let that happen. I have 5 stores (1 Rite Aid/CVS type pharm/drug) and 4 grocery stores that all have “bonus cards”–1 has a great deal on gas savings for every dollar you spend so sometimes it takes alot of math for me to calculate which is the better deal and at each of my grocery stores I applied for (3) separate bonus cards in my name, DH name and DM name so that I can maximize bonus buy savings (they limit those cuz they’re super good deals) and then I cross check all 4 stores to see who has what on sale and I always go for the loss leader items (so low the store looses money and the store does this to draw you into the store and then they count on you usually buying all the other no-sale items). I then combine my best coupons and store coupons on those loss leader items–I ususally get those free or almost free. I use a notebook binder with numerous sections with baseball card sleeves to hold the category related coupons so I have coupons at a glance just in case I find something unexpectedly on sale at RBP (rock bottom price) and those are usually free or every once in awhile if I get really lucky, those items are a negative on my bill–can’t get money back but it comes off my total bill. That’s really cool when that happens. I do all my lists at home with my coupons in an evelope attached to each store flyer so that I’m not fumbling with coupons and comparing prices at the store, but occassionally the store will have no-advertised close out or discontinued items and that’s why I ALWAYS bring my coupon binder in each store that way I never miss a RBP opportunity to maximize use of my coupns. Unfortunately those darn exp dates on the coupons are at least 30-45 days shorter now compared to last year so I also have to factor that into NRBP (near RBP) as well as I have a smaller section devoted to coupons ready to expire. Wow, that was a super long post–geesh I’m so sorry….can you tell I’m passionate about coupons? Don’t even get me started on TP comparison shopping with the SFPW (sq ft per wipe) calculations, My SIL still teases me about it and it’s been 25+ yrs since I first shopped with her to set up her first apartment “staples”. I just realized that maybe I had a teeny bit of prepping DNA and hadn’t noticed it…does coupon attack training count? LoL

        • Mrs. P.,

          It sounds like you and I have a similar coupon strategy. Here’s the link to a little article I write a few months back.

          http://www.thesurvivalistblog.net/tactical-strategic-shopping/

          Like you, it was the increase in food prices that really opened my eyes.

          • Mrs. Prepper says:

            Gayle! I knew I had a connection with you! I read your blog—Oh my gosh, our shopping logic is nearly identical. I do however, go to 5 different stores instead of just the one main store that has the best prices on the 30 various items (my mom shops on the 30 item theory–kinda…she’s extremely store loyal I think mostly b/c even after I’ve told her about a competing store having something basically free, she won’t bother, she says it’s not worth it (gas) and she likes dealing with the same store). To each their own. I guess it was my love of numbers, but when I discovered this way of shopping after I attended a seminar years ago called PrimeAmerica something another–can’t recall the name, but my Gmom asked me to take her as she was always interested in saving in every aspect of her life–being young I thought it was ridiculous at the time–so young and stupid was I–but, a couple gems I left with was how to save big at the grocery store–and saving interest on mortgage etc…I did use that info on a big scale to save huge on some properties we later bought, but sadly I didn’t take any of the other great ideas into action through my own stupidity–one of many “duh” moments I’ve been having in my last couple years–but the grocery savings stuck with me and I was hooked, at least for the first 5 years and then the next few years, our various businesses took off and it seemed like money flowed from the sky–careless and wreckless stewards of our bountiful blessings and foolishly thinking the ride would last forever, we spent like crazy and basically got wiped out in 2008-2009 when our own SHTF began. I quickly went back to grocery shopping as we were eating out 7DW every meal at the time and that was by far, our highest monthly expense, topping even our mortgage payment. Reality hit and it hit HARD. Combined with a 1-2 punch of DH spinal cord surgery and my world had been set upside down. Saving on my groceries and cutting nearly every single non-crucial expense was vital and so I guess I obsess more than the average bear on the cherry pick items and couponing. Is cherry picking a local term? That’s what they call it here…any who, I know it was b/c of my obsessive RBP that I noticed the prices of food going up alot (combined with watching food documentaries on Netflix) and that started my awakening to a bigger SHTF scenario that wasn’t just within my own little world, but on a greater scale that would make my situation pale in comparison. That first year after everything went to crap was tough and it’s gotten better but it’s been a long hard struggle and I’ve held my coupon binder tightly ever since and NEVER leave home without it and try not to beat myself up too much for the sinful squander we plowed and definitely paying the price now but the hardest lessons are learned and learned well. Gmom always said, “If you don’t listen, ya gotta feel”. At the time, I just related that to getting my butt whooped when/if I misbehaved….now I know the real meaning of those words. At least I didn’t wake up when I was 99 I suppose I am grateful for that. Wow, that just poured out–sorry about that negative draw for the day. Geesh! Back to positive side of the bridge…yay for Friday! Hope everyone has a great weekend and most importantly, stay safe.

            • Mrs. P.,

              I cherry pick the sales too, especially at Publix. When they have BOGO sales, I have no problem buying a cart full of stuff, if it is a good price and it’s something I need.

              Don’t worry about lapsing into negativity once in a while. Sometimes we need to rant. Let it out and let it go. The main thing is that you are awake now and you are prepping now.

              Stock up now because this summer and up through the election, things could get messy.

      • Mrs. Prepper says:

        Candy,
        thanks for the info. I haven’t really found a great thrift store…yet. I did manage to get a few teeny jars at a good price but it’s kinda far away but I will still search for used. I began freecyle this week too–tons of stuff people give away. I got a whole bag of spearmint roots–the lady said super easy to grow but grow in a pot cuz they take over everything–hence why she was giving away so many sets of roots but wow the things people are giving away and I’m hoping I get lucky on the jars and I even put a request for food grade buckets too–what the heck, I just might get lucky. I saw a free ad for 6 hockey stix and I paused and laughed a moment and thought, wow that’s alot of stix…thing bam! I thought, hmmmm..wonder if those would be good for security–I could have one at various points throughout the house not have to worry about my youngest DS like with a more lethal/dangerous protection item…but within 5 mins of posting, someone else already snatched them up–hmmm…another prepper in my immediate area thought same thing or just another mom with alot of kids that play hockey? Hmmmm.

      • Encourager says:

        I have found the white hard plastic rings on sale at the end of the canning season (yeah, I know, with prepping there is no end to the canning season!) They last forever, or so it seems. And they don’t rust!

  16. The tomato plant I planted a few weeks ago is blooming. It looks like I am going to have tomatoes before too long. Yeah!

  17. Diver Gal (So. FL) says:

    For people who shop at Publix, you can get some free or close to free stuff w coupons this week….

    Kraft Fresh Takes regular price 2.99
    Sale Price 2.00
    Use 2 Manufact Coupon 1.00 off
    Use 1 Publix coupon (yellow flyer 2.00 off 2
    Buy 4 and they are free

    Philadelphia Cooking Creams regular price 2.99
    Sale price 2.00
    Use Manufact. Coupon 1.50/2
    Use Publix Coupon (yellow flyer) 2.00/2
    Makes them .25 each

    I got 4 boxes of cereal, 6 fresh takes, 4 cooking creams, 2 philadelphia chocolate cream cheese fondue things (same deal as the cooking creams) all for $5.18. Not exactly prepping foods but I figure I may as well enjoy the stuff while we can still get it and enjoy.

    Plus, I have to save all the money I can on food since Im going to be spending serious money on fuel for the boats. Am already considering only running 2 instead of all of them. Since Im short divers for this season anyways I wont have to let anyone go at least. Anyways…

    Happy Prepping,

    DG

    • DG,

      Thanks for the heads up. I love cream cheese on home baked bread. Yum.

    • Mrs Prepper says:

      DG,
      I don’t have publix here…wish I did…you are sooo lucky. Great job on your savings…you had me at $1.50/2 AND a store coupon. LOL While on vaca couple years ago, stopped in at a Publix to grab supplies and because I ALWAYS carry my coupn binder, couldn’t help myself with all the great deals, poor DH got worried and came looking for me in the store cuz I was taking so long and only went in for couple items. LoL. As space is at a premium in a RV, it took every ounce of discipline not to sneak out for a midnight raid on the Publix…actually, if I’m honest, the discipline came from not being able to stealthfully drive the RV back to Publix during the night whilst everyone slept–oooh how I wished we had brought the tow-behind…that I could have managed LOL

  18. Just a note:
    As I read this blog it has become clear to me that the most valuable commodity I can obtain for my prepping is not a list of things that I might not be able to afford at this time. It is KNOWLEDGE! I have read things that I never thought of before and surely would not have. The knowledge about so broad a spectrum of topics is awsome! The tid-bits of info I store away in my “brain-vault” are going to come in very handy some day. As I cruise garage sales, flea markets, and estate sales, I am looking at everything with a new eye toward future uses. My wife and I have a new topic to discuss that is bringing us closer, and there is a tremenous amount of satisfaction that comes from a new purpose. Can’t wait for the new “spring season” to get out and hunt usable items. Thanks again for everyones contribution!

    • PSSUPT,

      Yes, the most important thing about prepping is the know-how. At some point we will run out of #10 cans, water filters and bullets. But the know how in terms of basic survival skills will last as long as we do. And skills are something that no one can take from you. And they skills can be bartered for things you need.

    • Encourager says:

      PSSUPT, I agree totally with you. Sometimes my brain hurts, I have read and learned so much. Sometimes I need to go research something on the internet more thoroughly to learn even more. I sure wish there was a place to go to learn hands-on. I learn best by doing.

  19. Gayle, couldnt reply but just wanted to let you know.Del-ton complete rifles have a lifetime warranty. I know some people dont like them and i havent had any personal experience with them but for a more affordable rifle you may want to look into them.

  20. Wow, I finally caught up on this weeks posts…..I have been reading since around 5 PM….lol…..and it’s now 9:30!

    Until next time 😉

  21. Running late for this week, but: I’ve spent the past three weeks trying to get a rifle from one state to another. It’s here, but now waiting on the gun registration to transfer to my name. I should have my hands on it tomorrow (Friday).
    Things are getting tighter here in Oz, and now they’re writing down licence numbers and addresses for every purchase, including ammo and powder.
    I got a .223 bolt action with a 3-9×50 IR scope.
    I’ll pick up 200 rounds with it tomorrow.
    I’ve started assembling my reloading gear as well, powder, 250 projectiles, primers and a LEE Classic loader.
    BTW, the powder is made here in Oz, up near Sydney, but it’s cheaper over there. Go figure.
    Next is a cleaning kit, and I’m looking at an OTIS Tactical kit.
    Too dear here, so if any of the Wolf Pack are inclined to post an Amazon purchase to Oz, contact me and we’ll talk PayPal figures.
    ([email protected])
    I’m looking foward to getting back into some serious shooting and reloading.
    Mike
    in Oz

    • village idiot says:

      I enjoy shooting and reloading myself, in that order. What make is your .223? I have a Mini-14 in .223 cal. myself, and really enjoy it. I hope you like yours as well. Why are things getting tighter there in Oz as far as getting firearms? Do you have some new laws or regulations?

    • crrrock…good to hear from you again…hear you and wellrounded have lots of flooding there now..about the size of France covered in floodwater…

      yes, I have noticed the changes too…till next time.

  22. bernie in texas says:

    CHLOE i put the paint can on here as a stove i have 5 of them you go to lows get a emty paint can put a roll of toilet paper in it and put alcol in it light it works greati have used this one scince dec 10 still used the same one with the same paper

    • bernie in texas, chloe…..
      I don’t remember where, but I read a lengthy article on how to make the Alcohol/Paint Can Stove. Sounded interesting but did mention that in an encolsed space, the burning alcohol gives one a terrible headache. Did you notice any problems, like that, with your stoves?

      • hawkeye..just google ‘plumber’s stove’ will come up immediately. all instructions/pictures etc..not difficult at all.

        I always use it outdoors.

        And easy to use when don’t want to gather twigs – or if it has been raining or too much dew on ground and everything is wet, so one always got a back-up stove to cook on…light, compact and fast boiling. hope this helped…

  23. Hunker-Down says:

    Official List Of Words Feds Monitor On Social Networking Sites

    http://www.activistpost.com/2012/02/official-list-of-words-feds-monitor-on.html

    Watch the video. What government group monitored a Michigan event? What are they referring to?

    Don’t forget to change your google history preferences.

    http://www.valuewalk.com/2012/02/how-to-stop-google-from-collecting-your-web-history/

  24. MsFedUp says:

    Hello Everyone!
    It has taken me almost two days to read all of the posts.
    Wow! a lot of new people are posting, that’s great.
    This past week I traveled to Chattanooga, TN. for a week to see my parents and other relatives. Something that caught my eye was an article in the paper about how the west side of the city in Chatt Town was running out of money in their budget for lower income housing. What happens when these people haven’t any money for housing? What happens when cities don’t have any budgets anymore for these things?
    Gayle, I thought of you when I was going north and coming back to Orlando, I honked the horn and waved at ya! Did you hear?
    What I did to prep-
    Cuz I am a gun nut, I bought more 22 lr ammo, 40 cal, 12ga. I won’t mention how much lest they take me away!
    -Read and reread labels on canned beans, because my Crohn’s cannot handle certain spices and esp. MSG. Have done a lot of reading around the internet and printing for my binders.
    -Read an article about starting with 100 cans of food and other items and then progressing to 1000, then 10,000.
    -Am trying to learn to can, I have one of those darn glass ceramic stoves which i hate!
    it is a slow process and I really appreciate when people talk about canning and their recipes on here.
    And I really really hate palmetto bugs, i think they can tell when you are thinking about trying to kill them, esp when you have a broom in your hands.

    • Mrs Prepper says:

      Ooooh, I hadn’t thought of that…does the type of stove top make a difference in canning? I have one of those smooth top electric stoves too–mack my forehead, again! I liked the ease of clean up and the house had gas when we moved in and I had DH remove it and put in a smooth top–now I can’t use my camping cookware and now it’s gonna effect my canning too? Say it ain’t so…..:-(

      • Mrs. Prepper,

        You might double check on this but I don’t think you can use a pressure canner on a glass top stove because it’s too heavy.

        • Mrs. Prepper says:

          That would be just my luck. Shoulda been happy with what came with the house and I could be using both my cast iron AND a pressure cooker. Long sigh….

      • MsFedUp says:

        You can call an ask about your stove from the maker, but when my pressure cooker is full it is too heavy for the stove and also too heavy for me.

      • Worrisome says:

        Using either a waterbath canner or a pressure canner on a glass top stove will eventually cause some damage to the stove top. Take this from me who has a damaged glass top stove! My answer was to go to Costco and buy myself a Camp Chef 2 burner outdoor propane range. ( This is not the little camp stove that resembles a childs toy stove) Works good! The range wasn’t too expensive and candidly, running the heat outdoors is an advantage, as it seems that when you are canning, it is usually in a warm time of the year and that means your a/c is cranking hard and adding to your bill as well.

  25. I am so mad right now. The big black snake is back in my garden. My dh took a look and said it was a cotton mouth. I wanted him to shoot it but he took a shovel and went to chop its head off. Needless to say the snake got away. I hope its not thinking my garden is a good place to have babies. So now there’s a double barrel shotgun sitting by the back door. He said the 410 would work. But I insisted he pull out the double barrel shotgun just in case he misses, he can take a second shot. I told him if that thing comes back and he doesn’t shoot it, I am going to shoot it myself. The only good snake is a dead snake. When he went to chop its head off and missed the snake came right at me. I screamed like a little girl.

    • MtWoman (N Central Texas) says:

      Cottonmouths can be very aggressive. Whereas most snakes will beat a retreat when a human comes, the Water Moccasin (another name for Cottonmouth) will just as easily chase you. And you are right to think about babies…this snake gives birth to live young…and will protect them….and it may be the right weather/time of year where you are for that to happen.

      Here’s a good article to read about it.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agkistrodon_piscivorus#Reproduction

      • MTW,
        You are indeed right about the agressivness of the cottonmouth. I lived for awhile below a hill that was full of em. One time my wife called scared to death because a CM was guarding the door into our house. It had a glass screen door and was trying to bite her through it. I came and approched the door with a broom (Iknow..) I whacked it a couple of times and the darn thing not only struck back but chased me down the walk. I’ve never had any other kind of snake exhibit that kind of behavior.

    • If my dh misses with the shotgun (LOL, I don’t know that that’s possible), I am going to demand an assault rifle so I can kill snakes myself. This was the second day in a row I’ve seen that same snake right in that spot.

      • Gayle,
        Last cottonmouth I saw was up at Lake Lanier. I shot it once in the head with a .22 pistol from about 8 feet away and killed it dead. Saw a big bulge in the body and thought it had swallowed a fish or something so I shot to that area and it opened right up and I’ve never seen so many baby snakes, each in it’s only little bag (that’s what it looked like) that litter would have produced at least 20 or more nasty snakes. If DH shots her and kills her, toss her some where else if she has the bulge so the babies can die too.

        • Cliff,

          Thanks for the heads up on that one. We’ve had a lot of rain the past week and the creek behind my house is full. The strangest thing I have ever seen–we were cycling out in the country years back when we had a very wet spring–flood conditions. We turned down one road where the gullies were completely full of water. There were hundreds of snakes sunning themselves. That was the only dry land around. We turned our bicycles around and went home. That was the summer we almost hit a 10 food alligator with the truck.

      • Hawkeye says:

        Was he wearing a nametag Gayle?

    • Mrs. Prepper says:

      Oh no Gayle, that’s awful. I agree, the only good snake is a dead one. Ewww! I know God gave every living thing a purpose, but those snakes….eeek! I can’t bare to look at one on TV, let alone face-to-face in person? No way. I would be sitting watch til that thing came back and he’d be a dead snake….and I just thought of another reason for me to learn to shoot. No snakes for me please…two legged or otherwise. Good luck Gayle…

      • JP in MT says:

        Gayle:
        If there is a snake problem then I’d recommend you look for a good, lightweight 38 Special short barreled revolver and load it with shot shells. This is what I carried in AZ when out wandering. Deadly at 15 feet!

      • Mrs. Prepper,

        Perhaps God created the snake to teach us shot selection and target practice with moving targets.

    • Worrisome says:

      I can’t blame you for screaming! I hate snakes! Why men resist using a gun in order to “play” with the snake using a shovel is beyond me. I think it is in their dna. I could relate many instances of such……..but this blog is entirely too long as it is!

      • cosmolined says:

        In defense of snakes… They are wonderful things to have around the house IF you don’t have little kids in the same area. They eat the rodents that eat your preps! I’ve caught, collected and owned snakes for 40 years. Knowledge and experience with them will help. Cos

        • MtWoman (N Central Texas) says:

          COS…agreed…snakes have their place. But a Cottonmouth/Water Moccasin is an aggressive, dangerous snake that I wouldn’t want around my home, kids & pets, or not, along with Rattlesnakes & Copperheads. But especially the Cottonmouth because it is so aggressive.

        • Didn’t say all were bad. I regularly catch Bull snakes and throw em under the house to thin out the mice on the farm. Every summer one gets cornered by the dogs and I’ll “rescue” it and put out in the pasture to continue its work.

      • Worrisome,

        Thank you. It is beyond my understanding as well. If that snake had gotten any closer to my feet, I would have started crying. And if you are going to use a shovel, use a long handled shovel–not the short little D-handled girl shovel. Duh!

    • Lantana says:

      Thinking good thoughts for y’all, Gayle. Stay safe.

    • Gayle, you are braver then me. I would have been inside the house yelling at my DH thru the window. Then again, with the way he reacted to a lizard in the house one time, he may very well be sitting in the house next to me as we both wish the snake gone.

    • Gayle, if you don’t have one get an air rifle in .177 or .22 caliber with a nice scope. It will help his aim and its good training. I’ve killed a few snakes this way and if he can hit that, the rabbits, squirrels etc will be easy work.

  26. Mrs. Prepper says:

    Sorry to already add to this really long string going here (btw what is the ettiquette for posting comments? is it ok to post on the same string or is there another area to start a new question?)…I need some help with this one. OK I’ve known DH hates beans and rice (you know what he says the rice looks like right?)….for 32 years I’ve know this but whatever, I eat them…God hasn’t managed to make a food item that I don’t so maybe that will be to my advantage when SHTF? Any who, I have still be putting up beans and rice in hopes that well if it’s all there is, he WILL eat it right? I mean it’s not toxic waste for goodness sakes. Well, confirmed DH gags at both….this is NOT good. OK, so maybe in a real SHTF scenario maybe it would be different…but…do I really want to live thru SHTF with DH gagging at every meal? I don’t think so. He does PBJ nearly every other day for lunch–how he hasn’t gotten sick of or gagged after that nearly everyday (his choice, please don’t think I’m an awful wifey). So I know PB is great for protein but that’s just not gonna cut it. Anybody have any recipe ideas for other items that would make for complete protein combo? Not including meat items of course–I don’t count on meat being a regular item on the table after SHTF–will be very occassional event, not like our 6DW currently so I don’t have alot of experience with non-meat related recipes (DH is a meat/potato guy and after 32 yrs he finally does most veggies, but not R&B). I know there are dehydrated this and that but eventually that runs out. Apologizing in advance as I’m trying to spread out my numerous questions so as not to immediately wear out my wonderful welcome so far. My next question involves food storage for dogs what can dogs eat after the stored items are gone–wow that stuff takes up a ton of room but I can’t bare the thought of SHTF without dogs in our unit. Appreciate any ideas

    • Lantana says:

      Mrs. P, if you have a mortar & pestle, you can grind the rice and cook it with the beans as a thickener.

      • Lantana says:

        Of course, that’s assuming his aversion is psycological, not physiological. . . .

    • Kelekona says:

      Darnit, I guess I neglected to bookmark that TVP hot-dog recipe. (It’s slightly more on-diet for me than kosher wieners, though I’d rather them than commercial veggie-dogs.)

      I imagine that most of the techniques in “How to eat fried worms” bear some research, though I doubt that he’d go insectivore if he can’t handle rice. (I’m thinking that the only way I could handle bugs or mammal eyeballs is if they were pureed and mixed into something.)

      About the most “normal” thing I can think of is to grind the rice and beans into flour. Red Mill is one of the companies that could sell you about a pound of each. Cream of Rice is an infant cereal that’s usually with the oatmeal and grits.

      http://ellacinderseats.blogspot.com/2010/01/fawaffle.html
      http://www.cupcakeproject.com/2008/08/baked-bean-and-tomato-cupcakes.html

      Try vegan and gluten-free boards for ideas. I’m not sure of the nutrition profiles of any other vegetables, some of them might be miracle foods.

    • Mrs. Prepper,

      Have you tried making Cajun red beans and rice? I’ve never met anyone who didn’t like red beans and rice. I have a dog and I store 100 lbs. of dog food. What that runs out I plan on feeding him rice supplemented with veggies from the garden. He loves rice. He thinks rice water (the left over bits of rice in the pan with water added) poured over his dog food is a treat. (He also thinks ice cubes are another kind of dog cookie. My dog begs for watermelon and marmite–Chloe, are you reading this?)

      • Gayle…yes…was hunched over, and when I read your last words…sat up straight right away – and got busy typing, while laughing still…

        Your dog has great taste…I love watermelon and marmite…but don’t partake of both at the same time…

        my DD’s 2 dogs love all the little bits of leftover food I freeze for them until they come over again…

        and they love toast and marmite/vegemite too..when I make toast in the morning – the 3 of us have 2 pieces each. yum.

    • Mrs. P.,

      I think you are fine in terms of etiquette. You don’t strike me as the type of person prone to the use of excessive profanity or taking pot shots at people instead of what they have to say. So I think you are okay.

      But I should probably mention that etiquette is not my strong suit. LOL

    • Nuttbush says:

      Mrs. Prepper, Your dog would love the rice that your DH won’t eat. My little doggie loves rice, sometimes I swear she gets an upset tummy every so often just to be able to eat rice.

    • Mrs Prepper, from personal experience, dont count on your DH to willingly choke down rice and beans if he cant stand them now. I was forced to eat a whole tomato as a child and still can not manage to swallow even the smallest piece burried in a ton of food. Now I can eat them cooked in stuff, but not raw. So that brings me to this question, is it just strait rice and beans that he will not eat, or have you tried different things like dirty rice, fried rice, brown rice, ect. You said it is the way the rice looks that turns him off, so maybe if the look and texture were to change he might manage it. Is it one type of beans he doesnt like or all of them? Maybe if they were mixed with other foods, such as in chili or on tacos (I mix beans right in with my taco meat and my kids dont even notice they are eating them)?

    • Mrs. P.,

      There is a book I think it is called How to Live on Wheat and it gives hundreds of recipes for dinners using wheat–like meatballs made from wheat. So if rice and beans are out for your dh, add other things that he does like to eat. I wrote an article a while back on meal planning and food storage and will include the link below. You can do food storage and work around an aversion to rice and beans. If your dh is a meat and potatoes man, you can design your food storage around that. And it doesn’t have to be horribly expensive. You can get a can of textured veggie protein TVP for something like $11 at EE.

      Here’s the link.

      http://www.thesurvivalistblog.net/meal-planning-and-food-storage/

    • Digital_Angel_316 says:
  27. We had another home invasion robbery last night. This time 15 college students were having a Bible study group when four armed men broke in and store their wallets, lap tops and other stuff. The police actually caught the people (three men and a woman) when someone from the apartment complex they live in called police and reported a group of people still wearing bandanas covering their faces were carrying guns and lap tops.

    I think we are only going to see more and more home invasions. My dh and I really need to take the tactical home defense class. The thing that stood out to me when I read the paper is that the entire home invasion lasted 90 seconds. No one was hurt. No shots were fired. The paper also said the thugs were going around the apartment complex looking for easy targets.

    • Worrisome says:

      Our area is undergoing this as well. Here it is looking for money, drugs and guns. Scary! I am going to have the front door’s security improved.

      • Worrisome,

        Do you have a dog? Few criminals will break into a house where there is a dog, even a little yap-yap dog. Criminals are cowards. They look for easy targets.

        • Worrisome says:

          Yes maam I have a dog. And she is pretty aware most of the time. And has bitten people 3 times so far for pushing their limits with her. She is very pretty and so they reach out to comfort her when she is barking at them and she nails them. She gives mucho warning, but some people think they can “talk” to her. But she is only 50# so beyond a watch dog, noisemaker and touchy, she isn’t going to do serious damage. So the security upgrade to the door is important. We have some crazy people living behind us in the national forest I worry about. It is winter, they have been there for a long while and were growing pot all last summer. After a meeting with the Sheriff recently however, they are soon to be rousted. You can hear them shooting guns at all times of the year and times of the day and night, neighbors dog came home shot up a month or so ago. We are putting in some electric fencing and security cameras and such along the back side of our homes. And beginning to pull together as neighbors, which is nice.

    • MtWoman (N Central Texas) says:

      Good heavens! These criminals sound like candidates for the TV show about stupid criminals. Still wearing their bandanas? Duh.

      • Mt.Woman,

        One of my students this morning said the one of the robbers is his neighbor. They walked into the apartment complex with bandanas and guns showing carrying a bunch of loot. The student said, why work a job for $7 or $8 an hour when you can sling rock and tree and make $5,000 a month. (To sling rock is to sell crack; “tree” is the current term for pot.)

        • MtWoman (N Central Texas) says:

          That boldness says something about what they think about LE. This does not bode well at all.

    • Gayle,
      Our state is one in which we have a “make my day law” in effect. If they come inside the house it is a free and clear invasion and you can (and should) shoot to kill. This has even been expanded to your automobile. If someone tries to carjack your auto you can give them a magnum for their trouble. Good to live in the land of the free!
      P.S if they’re in the yard, just make sure you drag inside before calling the authorities. 😉

      • PSSUPT,

        “Make My Day Law”–that’s a better name than the Castle Law. When Florida adopted the Castle Law (which applies to your car as well), folks started calling it the Gun-shine State instead of the Sunshine State. I think if every household had a big dog and a shotgun, there would be fewer home invasions.

      • MtWoman (N Central Texas) says:

        PS…what state? Hope it’s mine: Texas.

      • cosmolined says:

        PSSUPT:
        I’ve fired a .357 in a pick-up cab ONCE….. Thought my ears were bleeding. Cos

    • Gayle…sounds like your instinct to get your Glock etc when you did was right on target…stay safe…cheers.

  28. ozhillbilly says:

    Greetings to the Wolf Pack folks! As usual I’m a day late and a dollar short. At least I have finally found some time to catch up on my reading this week. Speaking of reading, the entries to the writing contest are great and thank you to the people that have taken the time to send them in. It’s also nice to see the subscriber numbers increasing as they do. To me it means that more and more people are waking up and becoming aware of the fragile world we live in today.

    My prepping this week has been a no-show. Being retired and getting my annuity check at the beginning of every month requires discipline and a little planning. I’m sure I’m not the only one in this situation so I’m preaching to the choir.

    One thing my wife and I have noticed recently and I believe it’s been mentioned in posts here is merchandise not being stocked on the store shelves. There were a couple of things we tried to buy this week that we could not find. When we asked about it, the reply was/is that it’s out of stock at the warehouse! I’m talking about common food stuff that is regularly consumed by everyone. Large food store chains work 24/7 and so does the reordering process. It’s perpetual and there are employees that it is their job to make sure this sort of thing doesn’t happen. So what is the problem here? Is it someone goofing off on the job? Is it a manufacturing glitch or just a snag in transportation? Might it be something more serious than that, like demand being greater than manufacturing can keep up or even having the resources to make the product? It could be all of the above. To me it shows how fragile things can be today. One might even argue that it reinforces our prepping philosophy.

    With the nice weather we’ve had in southwest Missouri this past week I’ve tried to get my garden in order for the upcoming season. Yesterday I planted an assortment of onion and garlic bulbs and sets. Earlier in the week I removed a tree stump from the spot where I want to build a chicken coop. I have come to realize that tree stumps are like icebergs. There is much more below the ground than there is above. I know there are machines that can do this stuff but lack of access to this spot would not allow the use of one.

    I thank you Wolf Pack for my weekly therapy session. I sincerely appreciate our friendship and your patience with me. I continuously pray for our mutual wisdom and faith in our Lord, Jesus Christ.

  29. M.D.,

    Did you make it though all those storms okay? I read that some parts of Tennessee got hit hard.

    • Gayle,

      I’m still in good shape – where I am we have had lots of rain, some wind and storms but nothing like some other areas…

      • M.D.,

        Good to hear you and yours are okay. Isn’t it a bit early in the year to be seeing tornadoes?

        • Gayle,

          Yes it is – according to the news there is a major system that is going to hit where I am in about ten min.

          • MtWoman (N Central Texas) says:

            Good luck MD!!!! Hang on!! We need you!!!

          • M.D.,

            Log on when the coast is clear and let us know you are okay.

            • Gayle,

              It passed by about a mile from where I am thank God for that as far as I know no one in my county has been hurt.

            • riverrider says:

              glad to hear it m.d….you might want to work on a continuity of blogging plan like uncle sugar does:) maybe give a trusted friend access in case something happens. a number of blogs i used to frequent quit posting never to return, with no explanation. the homestead report, a view from the porch ,to name a couple. take care.

            • M.D.,

              That’s really close. You may want to sleep with one eye open tonight. The storms are not over.

            • My little brother lives north of Atlanta. We called him a bit ago and he had a report of a tornado seven miles from his house. They are under a tornado watch until 2 a.m. These storms stretch from east Texas to N.J. I fear the morning light will reveal massive damage, both in human life and in destruction of property.

  30. riverrider says:

    all, i went by my local gun shop. the owner said that bushmaster(maker of fine ar15’s) sent him a notice not to order any more until further notice, as they are too far behind in filling orders. dsarms, my primary supplier told me that they are out of ar parts and have no idea when they will have any, as did psa my alternate. my dealer said anything ruger is out, as are anything 870, glock, pretty much anything prepper. he said it will be worse after this wednesday when doomsday bunkers airs. glad i got most of what i need…prayers to all in tornado alley.

    • I have been having a hard time finding Winchester 12-guage 2 3/4 shells in either 00 or 06. And I have been making the rounds at four different Walmart stores for the past six weeks. At one of the stores the guy said he can’t keep the ammo stocked. And what they did have on the shelf they had because he special ordered it. I might find a box if I am lucky.

  31. Flat Earth says:

    This is a test. This is only a test.

  32. MtWoman (N Central Texas) says:

    Hey…are all our East Coast Wolfpack members ok? I’m watching the news this morning, and wow….really bad over there. Tornado warnings still in effect.

    Watching the videos of the damage, and listening to the stories of survival…lots of things to think about for prepping. The most outstanding one for me was the elder couple who had an underground bunker, made it to it, and survived. ..while everything around them was completely destroyed. Safe rooms in a school were torn apart, but everyone survived…lying on the floor. One tornado path was 10 miles long. That’s powerful.

    The storms seem to be much stronger lately. And this is WAY early for all this.Time to tighten up and hunker-down.