What did you do to prep this week?

Before we start today, I would like to thank Brad V, Doris V, and John T for their generous donations via PayPal this week. Thank you for the help you are the best. :yes:

I would also like to thank everyone that has bought my new book “31 Days to Survival” according to my reports sales are strong with the first printing being sold out within the first two days after the books release.

Please head over to Amazon.com and post a short review of “31 Days to Survival” (a review can be as simple as “Great book – Recommended!” or something similar) and don’t forget to click on the “Like” button at the top of the page.

The winners of our latest non-fiction writing contest will be announced on April 2 2012. Please note that we still have about 30 articles that were submitted for the contest that have not been published and will automatically be reserved for our next contest.

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

  • Subscribed to “Hobby Farms” magazine.
  • Renewed my subscription to “Countryside” magazine.
  • Ordered ten more Magpul 30 round AR-15 magazines.
  • Worked in my garden and tended to the needs of my newly planted dwarf fruit trees.
  • Butchered six young rabbits from my stock.
  • Replaced consumed canned goods with new products (remember rotation).
  • Bought twenty boxes of .22LR ammo from the local Wal-Mart.

Well folks that is the highlights for my prepping this week, now it is your turn – what did you do to prep this week?

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  1. Kelekona says:

    This is not a prep, but perhaps a warning sign.

    I’ve been trying to deal with Corel for several days, Canadian company but enough international business to consider as a big fish. I had paid them good money for a product and the first time I needed tech support, they shut me down and said I needed the latest version. I complained again about both the old version and the trial version of the new product, they insisted that I needed to give them upwards of $200 to have working software. I’m waiting to see what their response is when I tell them the old software is working again but the upgrade demo ignored being hit with the “work damn you” stick.

    Of course, it was the same when Cannon insisted that the generic black cartridge was causing the yellow to be green. (It was really a saturation issue… test pages would look fine, but the yellow was old enough to make what I was working on to look like the software was adding blue. The black cartridge was put in during the middle of the problem and caused me to use up several paper towels plus a trip back to the store.)

  2. Ok Wolf Pack, I have a question. Everything I read says not to use empty milk jusgs for storing water. Is there no way to clean these things to make it possible to store water in? I’m saving every form of empty container, i.e. plastic grocery bags, all empty plastic containers such as peanut butter jars, butter tubs, any and all boxes, etc. My thinking is that when TSHTF, and manufacturing grinds to a halt, everything will be in short supply, If I need to barter with someone, and trade, say, a pound of sugar for a pound of beans, the person I’m bartering with may not have a container, or myself if I don’t save these items. So what can I do with the plastic milk jugs? It looks like a little mild bleach water in them for a few days would clean them? Any advice?

    • DJV,

      The plasic in the jugs breaks down rather quickly and after a few months they begin to fall apart… They will work short term but they are not a long tern solution.

      • Thank you for that info. It makes sense now. I just couldn’t understand why they were any different from other plastic jugs. So I’ll save them, for a temporary container for dry items, or for an emergency funnel with the bottom cut out! Still can’t let myself throw them away!

        • Bam Bam says:


          I keep empty milk jugs as hurricane preps. If it looks like we are going to get hit, I fill them up to use as non potable water.

    • Prudent says:

      Drifted into the habit of picking up at least one Aquatainer at walmart each month. They normally stock only two at a time in sporting goods and it is the best price I have found with of course no shipping and handling…….. Just rotate freash water in and out of em twice a year with a very very light bleach rinse in between. Shorter term….. we keep a number of 90 gal. heavy duty trash cans on hand… full of toilet paper…. along with a dedicated hose to fill them with should we have the time to do it. Otherwise they are our ‘rain’ barrels…. This is what we have room for.

    • DJV…I have read that the milk jugs degrade fast, hence would lose your valuable contents…so, I use lots of fruit juice bottles, vinegar bottles etc…

      And keep any bleach bottles for storing water.
      Keep all plastic screw top jars – multiple uses.

      However, keep those cleaned milk bottles…practice now…fill 3, and also fill 3 juice bottles…put them away for 12 months, with a few drops of bleach in each – where no light can get to them…see what happens.

      Also, no harm in keeping lots of empty clean milk containers – for just that purpose – fill them as required, with whatever is required, at the time – that way, if they do degrade in the storage period…at least you have not lost any valuable prep items…and if they are still viable…then fill them with whatever is required…that way, will always have a supply of empty containers for whatever purpose you want to put them to.

      Also, can use them as starter pots for plants/seedlings.
      cut bottom out, on a diagonal, and use as a scoop.
      poke some holes through the bottle – push in some small branches/twigs..make 2 openings either side near bottom – use as a bird feeder.

      I have used milk bottles to store candles and matches/lighters in…can see the contents, and they are waterproof.

      can place assorted pens/crayons etc – all waterproof – tidy and in one place till needed.

      use them as float containers when setting crab pots.

      stuff lots of socks/undies etc – one bottle for each member of the family – pack them in – can fit 3 days worth in them – when needed, pierce the bottle along the bottom.

      I have lots of glad bags. They are sturdy and don’t take up much room until they are needed.

      Remember freezer bags and garbage bags – lots of uses.

      15 litre water bottles can be used as washing up tubs – lay them on their side – and cut out the top area…

      I am also storing 20 litre metal drums that cooking oil comes in…can make these into sawdust stoves, washing tubs, vermin proof containers to hold dog food/wheat/rice etc with O2 absorbers.

      Also storing empty 20 litre sturdy plastic containers – these can be filled with water – painted black and hoisted into a tree when needed ie, – use spigot at bottom of container when you want the water to flow when showering – first remove lid.

      Or, keep on side of kitchen preparation table when cooking outdoors – easy to keep hands clean, with spigot so handy – water wastage will be minimal.
      Or cut these also, and use as a washing up container…

      once your prepper eyes see the possibilities, and they obviously have…then keep those milk jugs…store them away from direct sunlight though.

      I used to get 50kgs heavy duty plastic buckets – now, they are no longer manufactured, instead they have changed over to cardboard drums…so, save what you can now…as sometimes items are no longer made…I am also saving all my glass jars with metal lids…vermin proof/waterproof…

      hope this helped..cheers..

      • Chloe, thanks. You are so right about containers that are available now, may not be later. For example, we save all metal coffee cans, but they are increasingly being made of plastic or even cardboard in some brands! So yes, I will be saving all plastic milk jugs, even though water storage may not be what they are best suited for, there will still be plenty of uses, as you pointed out. Another thing I see them used for in gardens, is to cut the bottoms out and put them over new plants on nights when there is a chance of a frost.

        • DJV…those metal coffee/milo cans are so good – I use them to hold vac sealed assorted stuff, not just food…yes, they will eventually rust, but I store them in cardboard boxes till needed.

          It is going to be so important to have vermin proof/unbreakable/floating containers – they are reasonably small and easily hidden/cached – and a great size to hand out to people who may be in need.

          Also, when going camping, can leave the cans out on table, and heavy dew/rain won’t bother contents…and when possums knock the cans over in the middle of the night…no worries.

          also, when I am painting (touching up paint chips on door frames etc, or walls etc) I cut a hole on the opposite side of the handle – such an easy paint holder, and paintbrush doesn’t fall into the rest of the paint…

          and I just wrap the whole milk jug/paintbrush in a plastic grocery bag while stopping for lunch…so many uses for these items, yet many people just discard the milk jugs (and many other items) and don’t see the possibilities. cheers.

          • Plant Lady says:

            Chloe: Great ideas…I save all containers, also. The clear 40 oz. Jif peanut butter plastic jars work great for nails, screws, bolts, etc. I use the large Coffemate plastic containers for fence staples, hinges, etc. And I stuff plastic grocery bags in them, too. You can fit a LOT in one…but don’t go overboard or you get a jack-in-the-box effect when you open one! And once i get the dehydrator, will be storing dried foods in a lot of them.
            I keep pill bottles, too, after thoroughly cleaning them. Great for seed storage.
            I keep all the containers in paper grocery sacks then when each sack if full, I put another paper grocery sack down over the top to keep dust/dirt off them until I need them – since I have to store them outside in a shed.

            • Hunker-Down says:

              Plant Lady,

              Tonight the temperature is forecasted to get down to 28 after 2-3 weeks with the lows on the mid 40’s.
              We used part of our hoard of 40 oz Jiff jars as plant covers.

            • plant lady…yes, I recycle what I can…and isn’t it great that we can now call ourselves preppers and/or survivalists – because way back in the day, I would have been called a…sssshhhhh… hoarder. hahahha…cheers.

      • Pineslayer says:

        Another use for milk jugs, cut a hole in the side and cram in all those plastic bags from shopping. Great dispenser and you can get a lot of bags in there. I put a jug with our camping gear and it comes in very handy.

        • Chloe and Pineslayer,
          Thanks for the great ideas. this really got the wheels turning. I’m saving as much plastic as I can. DW thinks it’s a little crazy but she still does it because if something does happen where manufacturing is affected those plastic containers and bags may be more valuable than we think.

          • mexneck…I agree…if something does happen…will only have my stored/saved containers available – for who knows how long.

            Water containers are most valuable…there was a program on TV ages ago…a white family (from a city, went to live with an African family..and it was the women’s job to collect the water, in plastic containers – and they had a long walk to the river each time…and back again with those filled containers….

            the more containers, the less journeys – one wonders how many calories were expanded on a weekly basis for that life-saving water…because they didn’t have that many containers.

            So, things that we have in such abundance that some discard without a second’s thought – are real lifesavers in some other person’s reality and daily life.

            So, in my opinion, the more containers, the better.

            And like plant lady, I keep old pill bottles, Berocca jars (keep a lighter in it – waterproof and floats), I also keep the dark glass bottles, in case I have to make up some tincture or salve.

  3. Sharoola says:

    Hi everyone!

    Was an insane week at work. I have 2 jobs, 1 is my ‘fun’ job and lets say neither was much fun these past few days:)

    Did I get anything prepped? I think so:

    * put up 2 soda bottles of lentils
    * auto-ordered brown rice
    * had a huge holly tree taken down, fruit trees in its place in 2 weeks
    * added 2 gallons of coffee grounds from my office to my compost heap
    * 6 cans of pork and beans
    * 6 cans of green beans
    * ordered 6 bottles of 32oz Dr. Woods Black Soap with Shea butter. Its great for skin and hair. goes a long way. I want to try their castile soap too.
    * made up about 5 years worth of powdered laundry detergent using Fels Naptha, Borax and washing soda

    I think thats it. This week I have my sights set on another 55 gallon drum for water, and 6 flats of canning jars.

  4. concrete termite says:

    I haven’t gotten much done lately. I got few knives free from a friend and put them in different places. I need to bring home some unused shelving from work for more storage. A friend and I are working out some deals on some things, hopefully our plan works out. I have been researching a few things too. If i get some time, I am going to try to go snag some spoonbill and stock up some fish.

  5. Kelekona says:

    For Colony watchers, I was a little bothered by the first or second episode. It seemed like Zombies were sent against them when they had done nothing to attract such attention except have an abandoned tent. Then they go attacked, and I’m sure they were specifically warned not to bust anyone’s eyesocket with a tire iron.

    I did get inspired to store provisions on the second floor of a building where only the support (risers?) of a staircase was left, no tread to make an easy climb.

    • concrete termite says:

      You may want to look at those stringers. if the treads have rotted off the stringers may be rotten too. You don’t want to be trying to carrying something up those and have them collapse out from under you.

      • Kelekona says:

        Ah yeah, if it were me, my first climb would be simply “can I actually get up there.” I think I’m paranoid / acrophobic enough to feel what’s under me in that sort of environment.

        I was just thinking that the nails would be the first thing to break, or someone used the treads for firewood because they were easy.

  6. charliebuck says:

    I picked up a Coleman Solar Generator set at Costco.3 panels that put out 55 watts,charge controller and inverter.Any WolfPack members have any experience with these,are they reliable?Any input is appreciated,Thanks.Be Safe and God Bless America,we need it.

  7. Well, for starters let me tell you this. We are on a budget. Like a no-income, 50 dollars to our name budget. We returned a drill press to Harbor Freight for 49 dollars in store credit, and walked out with the following:

    – 2 Survival knives (with water tight compartments in handles containing a compass, mini sewing kit, matches, and hook and line)
    – 2 magnesium fire starters
    – machete
    – 2 50 ft lengths of rope
    – 2 LED flashlights
    – 3 pack of lighters
    – hatchet (more like a small axe)
    – dust masks (mostly because they were at the checkout and we still has a couple bucks left)
    – 3 carabiners (not climbing grade, but great for water bottles hanging off backpacks)
    – 2 pairs of work gloves
    – a funnel set (not sure why hubby wants this)(to collect water easier he says)

    We also picked up 2 boxes of 250 matches for a buck at Dollar Tree. We water proofed them with candle wax. We feel alot better having this stuff now thatn we did before. Harbor Freight is great for individuals trying to live AND prep on a budget. The quality may not be that of what you might find at Dick’s Sporting Goods or someplace, but we feel that it is better than not having anything at all. We’ve also got a Dollar Tree list, which is 90% of our bug out bags. $75 dollars and our bags will be done (though I’m sure hubby will still continue to add), including 2 weeks of food for each of us. All we will have left is to buy are 2 SCYY cpx2’s and a Remington 870 HD Express (with a tactical stock, hubby says.) Then we can go play in the woods and try to figure out how to survive!

    • BamaBecca says:

      You go girl! I’m so proud for you! You did an amazing job. Just goes to show what you can do when you’re determined. I know I’ve been moaning and groaning for weeks now, cuz I got laid off of work and my preps have dropped WAY down and I’ve also been using some stuff I had stored and haven’t been able to replace it, BUT I still have most of the basics…and I need to make another trip to the dollar tree! 😉 They have a emergency candles for $1 too, but you may have to hunt for them. I got a lot of my medical preps there.

      Its easy to get discouraged when you see others do lots of prepping that you can’t afford to do….but just keep on keepin’ on. You may not have everything you WANT to have, but having plenty of basics is a LOT more than most will have when TSHTF.

      Where there is a will, there is a way!

      • Krystle says:

        Thank you so much Becca! Your reply makes me feel alot better, even though I hate that there are others like me struggling to keep their heads above water AND trying to prep at the same time, it’s really helpful to know that I’m not alone. It’s also great to have another voice besides mine telling me that I’m doing the best that I can and that it’s way better than nothing! Thanks again for the encouragement!!!

        • BamaBecca says:

          You are very welcome hon…I’ve always been a penny pincher (well, MOST of the time) love to find a good bargain and lots of times I’ll put off buying something until I can find it at at better price. You did great! 😉

    • wow…amazing shopping ability…lots of bang for you bucks…can feel your excitement from here…so good to see you are having fun with your prepping…cheers.

  8. NANN!/Cruzette says:

    I headed to my local dollar store for one thing today, and ended up buying a few more items for my pantry. 8 cans of chunk white chicken, 4 of them with ‘Buffalo style sauce’…1 can shortening…couple more cans Hormel roast beef & gravy…2 more canned hams…2 more Armour beef stew…instant mashed taters…another case of cup o’ noodles…and a box of beef sticks. Also, yesterday I traded an old telescope for a treadle sewing machine.
    Best of all, received M.D.’s new book in the mail today. Read the first chapter so far. Looks like lots of good info in there! It’s nice to have survival info in print, and not have to rely on what’s stored on my computers. Thanks M.D.!

  9. mountain lady says:

    Just finished reading all the posts. Most of you have really done a great job this week. I did not buy anything this week, but did learn a few things just reading here. Thanks pack.

  10. West Texas says:

    For those parents who homeschool and for those of us that didn’t stay awake when we were in school ourselves…
    Found an outstanding educational resource – http://www.khanacademy.org/​#browse – gives tutorials that even a mentally deficient such as myself can understand. Covers everything from basic math to calculus to humanities and science (physics, biology etc.) – There are several charter schools that are assigning these to students – sponsored by Microsoft.

    Emphasis on FREE

    • Soggy Prepper says:

      We use Khan’s academy a couple times a week. Usually when youngest doesn’t want to do book work! lol She loves the biology stuff. It is a great source for anyone and has a lot to choose from.
      And free makes it even better!

    • NANN!/Cruzette says:

      Awesome! Thanks, West Texas!

  11. Mt Survivor says:

    This week I learned to can jam. So now have 8 pints strawberry and 6 pints blackberry (more to come when I can pick them fresh at my dad’s place he has them all over the place). I purchased the books “Back to Basics” and “Homesteading” by a lady last name Gehring. She has great ideas and the bread recipe in the back to basics is absolutely great. I purchased a second Springfield xd40 and sold some things that I won’t need if the shtf. So trying to decide which firearm to purchase next.

    • Krystle says:

      I checked both of those books out from the library and found them to be fairly helpful. In one of them, there is a chart to tell you which plants to keep near each other in the garden, and that was all news to me. Overall I liked them, but for me they seemed to be a bit vague in some areas and too in-depth in others. Good books though, happy reading!

  12. Hi, I assembled the first of three 6’ x 12’ greenhouses. I also planted about 1,000 seeds for spring (vegetables, corn & herbs). I plant extra for dry storage, canning and sharing. I had some help from friends clearings rocks from my new ¼ acre garden which is now awaiting 100 yards of top soil. I also went to Costco and loaded up on the usual canned goods. I also read a few more chapters of my raising chickens book and the Medicinal Herb Handbook.

  13. riverrider says:

    it looks like TDL wants to do away with the supreme court, since it looks like its not going his way. he “doesn’t understand how un-elected judges can override a law made by an elected official” ITS CALLED CHECKS AND BALANCES, its in the CONSTITUTION, READ IT SOMETIME. this is the man we elected to defend and uphold the Constitution and he has no idea what it says or why. which is why there is the supreme court to begin with. jeesh! can you believe this guy? he supposedly taught constitutional law? his students need to get their money back.

    • riverrider says:

      MD- sorry for the rant but it does apply to prepping. with a guy like this in office, there’s no telling what may come out next. we have to be ready for anything. no hard feelings if you don’t post it, just had to get it off my chest:) prep on brother.

    • cosmolined says:

      Ditto Brother. All Enemies, Foreign and Domestic, now makes more sense. (What wonderful insight our forefathers had!) Cos

      P.S. I don’t know when the military oath originated, but I think it was before this clown was elected.

      • K Fields says:

        Cos – I hate to mention it but I think you’re forgetting the line, “I will obey the orders of the President of the United States ..” that follows.
        That line was put in by the founding fathers in 1789 (first oath after the Constitution).
        Current wording of oath becoming effective in 1962.

        • village idiot says:

          I hate to mention this, K, but you left out part of it. An important part.

          “…I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice”

          No soldier or Marine is obligated to obey un unlawful order. And any order that involves a criminal act is unlawful.

          • K Fields says:

            Are you sure that I wasn’t quoting the original 1789 version that doesn’t include the “according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice” statement? Remember, the UCMJ wasn’t established until 1951.
            OK, I’m just kidding – you’re correct. I should have simply posted the complete oath, but I’m not clear on the point you’re making.
            It seems to me bloggers who are quoting the phrase, “against all enemies, foreign and domestic” are saying the military should conduct a coup d’état and throw the President out of office. Yet that would be unconstitutional and the oath clearly states, “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States.”
            That was the point I was making. The loyalty is to the Constitution and the President.
            The Constitution is clear who has the right to charge or remove a President – and it’s not the military or the militia.

            • riverrider says:

              k, i think its a matter of opinion. as a soldier i took that oath seriously, and at some point i would i feel it would be my duty to arrest or detain any ranking individual that i feel seeks to destroy the constitution and thereby the country. the joint chiefs thought so too in clinton’s last term, and let him know as much.

            • K Fields says:

              I really hate to hear that – not that you took the oath seriously, but that military personnel would ever consider a coup d’état in this country. Those words, “against all enemies, foreign and domestic” were added in July 1862 because of the Civil War!
              There was never (as far as I know) any thought of those words being used as a basis for a military takeover of a government freely elected by the people. The Constitution clearly states how the government may be changed, and no-where in that document are such rights granted to a military body.
              The whole idea of having a standing army was hotly debated by the founding fathers with many feeling having one would be a mistake. As Elbridge Gerry stated during the Congressional debates over the Second Amendment, “What, sir, is the use of a militia? It is to prevent the establishment of a standing army, the bane of liberty.”
              I have often thought those words were just a product of their time – as much of their complaint was the result of abuses from the British Military, but now I need to rethink that opinion and my explore thoughts on how I should really be seeing our current armed forces. If such an opinion of the meaning of the oath is widespread (and not just the talk of pseudo-military as I had thought), then I must question who really are the enemies, foreign and domestic, of this republic.

            • K Fields says:

              I just reread my comment and I may not have been completely clear. I was thinking about those Generals (joint chiefs) you spoke of, not rank and file military personnel.

            • Just to throw in my 2 cents, my oath was to defend the Constitution. Not to a temparay resident of the peoples house. If the orders given were unlawful I would not follow them. The sticking point is who would decide the orders were lawful or not. Thats where I would rely on the courts.
              Keep the faith.

    • Soggy Prepper says:

      You must be a looney, right-wing, racist, hater, clinging to guns and religion to believe the Constitution is a foundational document with which to run the United States of America! You probably even believe in liberty, justice and the pursuit of happiness!

      Crazy Patriot!

    • axelsteve says:

      If I remember correctly he was a guest lecturer not a professor.Kinda like a sub teacher but uncredentialed.

    • K Fields says:

      I’ve debated with myself whether to post this or not, but in the end I felt I should. Please understand that I’m not disagreeing with your sentiments nor trying to be an ass. Anyway, here it is:

      I understand the “rant” and agree completely that there should be full checks and balances but (and I know this sounds crazy), but the judicial branch’s power to exercise review over the other two branches of government is not explicitly granted by the Constitution.
      It is only through earlier cases, mainly Marbury v Madison in 1803, that there is any precedent for rulings calling action by the other branches unconstitutional.
      The founding fathers really struggled with this one as many felt such a power (if specified) would make the judicial branch more powerful than the other two (thus giving ultimate power to political appointees instead of elected officials).
      Hopefully Obama won’t push this, but I think he knows enough about the Constitution to realize it’s possible.

      I’ll be quiet now. Sorry if I’ve offended anyone.

      • riverrider says:

        k, none taken. you are correct to a point and i spoke out of frustration. you are a voice of reason. however the ff’s clearly intended for there to be checks and balances on the power of the executive and legislative branches, though they couldn’t agree on the wording. i myself have thought the scotus was jacked up in some of their decisions, but its no reason to toss them out. tdl has been all too eager to embrace them when they were on his side of an arguement. the reason their decisions became so radical in the first place was the politicalization of the appointment process. if you toss scotus, what’s next? oh maybe that pesky bill of rights? lets scratch off “liberty” from that whole “life, liberty and persuit of happiness” thing. clearly its all outdated, they didn’t even have smartphones to help them spell back then. since both parties have become frightened little children quaking in their boots over terrorism(or revolution), the scotus is our last hope of maintaining or recovering freedom short of armed insurrection. i certainly hope it doesn’t come to that. thats all i’m saying:)

        • riverrider says:

          k, and watch that “debating with yourself”. some guys in white jackets might show up:)

          • K Fields says:

            riverrider, Luckily I live in an area where everyone is a bit loony – they can’t get us all. Well, I hope not – but then again, maybe they could, aw sh*t I’m doing it again…

            • riverrider says:

              k, lol, nine out of ten voices in my head like you.

            • village idiot says:

              LOL. I’m pretty sure you could win a debate with them, K. Before they left your place they would be arresting themselves.

  14. Lantana says:

    Mt Woman and other north Texas Pack members, are you okay?

    We have two tornado emergencies, one in south Dallas, one in arlington, and a wall cloud forming in Johnson Co. 18-wheeler trailers are being thrown hundreds of feet in the air, our veteran forecaster says he’s never seen that. The storms have been on the ground for over 20 minutes, est winds of 100-120 mph.

    Prayers for all in the path of these storms. Hope local pack members can check in soon. . . .

    • Lantana, you take care of yourself. I saw the news on CNN an had never seen any thing like that before. My gf thought those were sheets of plywood or debris and when I told her those were trailers she couldn’t believe it until the news posted below that’s what the were.

    • Copperhead says:

      I’m quite a few miles from the tornadoes, thank goodness. Looks like pretty bad destruction, but, so far, no fatalities reported. That is a blessing!
      Lantana and DJV, hope you are both still o.k. (oops, just notice MtWoman, that you reported below. Glad your mom is o.k.)
      All take care….

  15. Thoughts and prayers going out to the Pack members and people in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area up into the Oklahoma City area they say its heading to.

    Hunker down and stay safe people

    • Thanks jarhead 03. We are ok in my neighborhood, right on the Tarrent County/JOhnson County line. But more tornadoes are forming as we speak and we were just told to take cover (again!). Just keep praying! But we are ready, thanks to prepping, and that’s a mihty good feeling. DH is on his way home from work, just hope he doesn’t run in to it.

  16. This has been a bad prepping week for me. Life and it’s demands (plus the drain on the funds) has really thrown me off track. That said:
    1) I did get to buy some more ammo, some to sock away and some for the range
    2) I put in 2 hours of range time, with the kids, and played the “Shoot for House Chores” game – and ended up doing all the chores, again.
    3) I rotated through half the battery stock, and replaced them with newer batteries
    4) I finished packing the family’s clothing bags for storage (duffel bags with clothing requirements that are not part of the BOB), and actually put them away (more room in the family room now…)
    5) Received my order from Hoegger’s today, with medical supplies for my goats. I used the opportunity to replenish and increase our own medical equipment.
    6) I bought a(nother) gun. Due to my lady love’s rather stern look (husbands, you know the one), I also sold and traded two others to cover the cost….
    7) I revised my equipment and supplies list to reflect some changes in our circumstances (good and not so good). This is a constant activity
    8) I’m canning butter tonight. We’ve canned for years, and made butter for quite a while, but tonight while my lady love is out of town, I’m going to try to combine the two!
    9) I’m also doing the monthly budget tonight to see what’s available for prep related activities for the rest of the month. It looks grim, but that just gives me an excuse to be inventive.

    That about covers the last few days.

    • d2 prep says:

      Steve, it actually sounds like you accomplished quite a bit this week. Good job.

  17. MtWoman says:

    I’m good right now. I took pics of rotation right over the house here, but the actual tornados formed East of us. A tornado passed right by my mother’s house, but she’s ok. Waiting now to hear from my Grandson, who’s in the school storm shelter. Stuff is still happening out there. The cat won’t be coming out from under the bed for days now, ’cause of the lightning and thunder. Watching those semi trailers being tossed like toys (on TV) was sobering. Spring in the South ain’t for sissies!!!

    • cosmolined says:

      Mt Woman:
      This has all the makings of a bad year. Sure hope you have a hidey hole…. God Bless and Protect you and yours. Cos

      • Yeah…not looking good Cos..on all fronts. I’m in a pretty ok place…at least not in The Big City. This place has its issues, but then all places do, right? Gotta do the best we can. My main concern is WATER. We’re on city-run wells here. They got really low during last year’s drought. They had to start treating the water more often and with stronger treatment doses. Smelled terrible and tasted worse. One day it was so strong, it ‘burned’ an open place on my hand! Maybe it was fracking chems…we’re surrounded here (and the wells are too) by drilling ops, and this company is not strict on their drainage measures.

        I don’t know about anyone else, but I just wasn’t prepared for how quickly things went downhill in ’08, and just have to make the best of what I have and do what I can. I’m sure I’m not alone in this position. I know many people were “smart” and ‘saw the need’ way before I did. But we’re each in the place we are and as prepped as we are, and doing the best we can. I’d hae to think we’re just doomed ’cause we weren’t “smart”.

        Don’t know why I said that here…not really relative to anything here…guess I just felt the need to say it.

        Thanks for you thoughts Cos and everyone.

        • village idiot says:

          “I don’t know about anyone else, but I just wasn’t prepared for how quickly things went downhill in ’08”.

          Think about this, MtWoman, the real estate and MBS bubble of 2008 was around $6 trillion, nothing compared to the sovereign debt bubble we face today, which is something over $15.5 trillion just in the US alone, not counting Western Europe. If this thing bursts…all bets are off. The 2008 crisis was a crisis of liquidity, and we barely had enough money to stave off utter disaster. There is not enough money in existence in the entire world to provide liquidity for a sovereign debt crisis. That’s why I prep.

          • riverrider says:

            vi, the new banking law included a provision requiring mutual funds, hedge funds and corporation controlled iras to “invest” a percentage in gov bonds. that is, they required YOUR money be thrown away on bonds they have no intension of making good. they already robbed the mil and civ gov pensions. these actions will allow them to kick the can a little farther down the road. when that runs out, i don’t see anything left to rob, except savings maybe. greece made the people settle for pennies on the dollar, right after they put a limit on withdrawals. look for that soon here.

  18. 2:36pm They are telling us to take shelter (again!). We are right on the line of JOhnson and Tarrent Counties. So far, our neighborhood has not had a tornado on the ground, but the cells keep forming. Weather sirens just sounded again so we’ll see how it goes. Thanks for any and all prayers. Feels great knowing we have folks praying. And that we have been prepping and barring being completely blown away, we can take care of ourselves. But there is lots of damage in the area due to tornadoes being on the ground for so long, and more forming. Could be a rough night

    • djv…hope you are okay…nature is so unpredictable. Let us know how you are when you can…prayers for you and others in the path of tornadoes.

  19. davidsdesire says:

    um, yeah….those tornadoes are NOT what I miss about being in Dallas. Tornado Alley ain’t my favorite address.

    Today I waxed cheese for the first time, procured some extra supplies. Bought some vitamins for the kids and for us. And I talked to ds about prepping and, surprisingly, he is on board! Yea!!

    Canning up some more ham and bean soup and some more chili today. 🙂

  20. Soggy Prepper says:

    Where’s BC Truck? Not another Pack member disappeared?!

    • axelsteve says:

      I hope not I like him.

    • Soggy, he has a youtube account. You can follow him there and leave comments.

    • soggy, he hasn’t posted for ages….great sense of humour too…remember the ‘trying to dehydrate water’ post. I’m laughing all over again remembering that one.


      there are others too, but won’t mention their names in case they are trying to stay under the radar…

      sending a big hello out to you all..you know who you are…take care.

  21. Candy in Nebraska says:

    I hope all is well with the Pack who are affected with these Tornados. Our prayers go out to all

  22. JP in MT says:

    FYI – Sales Alert!
    Albertson’s has 1 pound boxes of pasta at 10 for $7.50; .75 per lb.!

  23. Well, folks, another reason to be grateful to be a prepper. What is that admonition I read here? I think it’s MD that says “Never become a refugee”. I just finished reading some of the local news articles regarding the heavy damage caused by yesterday’s tornadoes in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. One city is not letting residents back into their damaged neighborhoods at all, and one city is only letting people back into their homes with a permit. One of those cities is “requesting” that even people whose homes are not severely damaged to leave their homes as well, since they “might” not be safe either. (I have to assume this means some damage of some kind, just not necessarily really badly damaged). The article states that if these people leave their homes (the slightly damaged ones) that they also will not be allowed to return until the PTB decide it’s ok. Hmmmmm………

    • cosmolined says:

      As a Public Works Inspector, I’d guess with debris and power lines down across the streets, possibly no electricity or running water and most folks ability to do the most incredibly stupid stuff you thought only occured on tv, they are doing it for the overall public good. Cos

    • MtWoman says:

      DJV…good observation. I live here in N Texas (but safe, tg), and I’ve been watching intently how yesterday’s emergencies have been/are being handled. I, too, noticed the “curfew” restriction and the “authorities” not letting residents who fled their homes or were evacuated back in….AND that anyone still in there could be “evacuated” “for their own safety” (all in Lancaster). This is a bit more extreme than usual. We can thank HS training for all that.

      When I was on the West coast in 2008, there was a big wildfire where I used to live. I still had many friends there, and followed the progression of the fire intently, as many of their homes were threatened (many were lost). The fire was in a Wilderness area, around which many (including my friends) lived. I lived there 30+ years, and went through 3 major fires while there. In all those fires, the Forest Service, local volunteer firefighters, local residents, etc, all worked together to battle the fires.

      Something very different happened in this one: the local authorities (as in LE) put a mandatory evacuation in place, demanding that ALL residents leave, even if their homes were not threatened. Many people resisted, and many said flat out “No”. Those that stayed were put on “house arrest”, and not allowed to leave their immediate premises, even if their business, livestock, relatives or another part of their property was just across the street, or a neighbor was in sight and within a short walk to visit and check on. Mind you, the fire was no where NEAR many of these folks. Somehow there were enough LE brought in to park at all the driveways along the highway that runs through the community, and to police the HA.

      There ended up being much “night vision” meanderings to take care of personal business…like see if the fire was on their property, or to water and feed animals (yes…you couldn’t even do that). This “house arrest” lasted several days. After that, there was even a restriction put on fighting fire on your own property…you weren’t allowed. Several people watched while their houses burned….and the FIREFIGHTERS stood around their trucks off to the side, watching too, having been told that it WAS TOO DANGEROUS for them to fight the fire. One fellow (who was a volunteer firefighter in the community for 20+ years) just went ahead and saved his own house. He was arrested.

      There were other “outlaw” acts, as many folks there have heavy road-working and farm equipment, and they just went ahead and made fire-breaks and cleared and did what they had to do…. while firefighters watched.

      After the fire was contained, there was an “investigation” into how the whole thing was handled, and it was revealed that the “new criteria” was straight from new HS (Homeland security) trainings for all LE & all emergency orgs. I did some research, and found some interesting info about that….enough to make me shudder.

      And for the preppers on here that will jump to the conclusion that all the folks there were pot-growers or into some other criminal activity, you are wrong. These were all solid, hard-working, regular folks. Several of the places that burned were old homesteads, where several generations of folks had lived. Some were even from pioneer times, and the families that lived there were hardened Wilderness folks. There was no need for what LE did.

      We’d best pay attention, and give thought to how we’ll handle martial law.

      • Yes, Mt Woman, I am sure what you are saying is true. I was discussing this with DH and I said “But we have everything we need to take care of ourselves if there is no water or electricity. We even have tarps to cover roof issues, etc., in the event there is storm damage. If we only had some damage, why would we be forced to leave? Can they do that?” He thought they couldn’t, but it sounds like they can. And will. Yes, I noticed that most of these issues were in Lancaster, and I realize that a lot of the folks lived in multi-story apartments. And its possible that the apartment owners have some say in that issue for liability reasons. But we have three large tents. I would rather pitch a tent and stay with my “stuff” since we are the only ones who will take care of it and defend it from looters if necessary. It has gotten pretty scary how quick the authorities are telling people to get out of their homes and stay out.
        Cos: yes I agree about the stupidity factor and I realize some folks will step on live wires and then sue the city for not having it cleaned up faster. Not sure what you do about those folks. But I saw some homes that I really don’t think would have to be evacuated if this folks chose to stay. But I could be wrong. Thanks though, for your input.

        • DJV…it’s shocking and unbelievable that there are such “gestapo” tactics right here in “free” America, but there are, and they are increasing.

          And Cos: I understand the need to protect against looters, etc, but I have a serious issue with the whole “protecting us from ourselves” mentality. For what? I don’t adhere to life being necessary to maintain at all costs. Sometimes people are stupid, and they die. That’s how it’s supposed to work. All of nature functions that way.

          I’ve always hated the ‘protection’ being in response to the lowest problem…like the TSA response to the shoe & underwear bombers. Like in school: everyone gets punished for the stupidity of the few. Bleech. 😛

        • And here’s another thing I don’t understand about all of that. It looks like the people who are setting up shelters for evacuees, and authorities responsible for overseeing everything (city, county, etc) would be grateful for as many folks as possible to be prepared and able to stay at home. There’s a limit to how many people a city can shelter, and there would never be enough places for more than a small percentage of the population in any given city. It seems as if the mindset is to automatically “round everybody up and put them in one place”. Scary.

          • MtWoman says:

            DJV…it would seem reasonable, yes…but it seems we are not in any kind of reasonable times. I was watching on TV when they tried to interview a Red Cross worker at a shelter. She behaved as though any info about the shelter and how it operated was a state secret. Really, really weird times we live in. Never thought I’d see all this. :/

        • cosmolined says:

          After re-reading the other folks thoughts. Lawyers SUCK, but that’s my life. If I’m in my home and am requested to leave, it’s bad words time. (Not Gonna’ Happen.) I’m a Wyoming Native, we tend to be stubborn. Cos

      • K Fields says:

        Wow – that’s really shocking to hear.
        I think that was the same year (2008) we had a lot of fires up here, and the reaction was as you described. Local CDF was pulling in everyone they could find for help – I mean, if you owned and could run a decent sized chainsaw you were almost drafted into helping. Well, not really, but they certainly weren’t turning anyone away and this area IS mostly pot growers.

        • KF…yeah…same year…different part of the state…if you’re in Cal. It was really weird. All the other big fires, locals had been ‘drafted’, and even loaned tools to fight fires around their homes. That seems to be done now. Just another way, it seems, that we are being treated like children instead of free adults. Bleech. 😛

      • Kelekona says:

        What is going on here? Is it some layer of authority waving its dick around to prove a point, or to root out the non-compliant? Were the last levels of authority afraid of being labelled non-compliant if they used their own judgement?

        Was allowing the homes to burn part of some economic stimulus?

        Were they afraid that the ones who didn’t evacuate would loot the homes of the ones who did? Did the MiB want free reign to search the homes before they burned?

        Were they just afraid that the ones who didn’t bolt at the first smell of smoke would not even leave at the last opportunity, or that those would wait until the last minute and get in each others’ way? Are they afraid that someone will scream a satanic curse at them while burning alive because the fire surrounded them?

        On another note, I did some lite reading about the Katrina Superdome and one article pointed to how whoever was in charge purposefully did not order enough supplies because he wanted to make the experience uncomfortable enough that people will stop relying on the city to take care of them during a crisis. …So if you don’t take care of yourself you are lazy and deserve what you get, but if you do take care of yourself you are labeled a terrorist.

        A decent government would offer help and then leave anyone who doesn’t want it alone.

        • MtWoman says:

          Kele….exactly. I remember watching the military arrive at the dome in New Orleans…with guns…but no water. Disturbed me even then.

          As far as the fire in Cal that I described, it was clearly and simply a power-play on the part of LE, based on new attitudes gotten during HS training. There were none of the incentives you described in place.

          And, yes, “So if you don’t take care of yourself you are lazy and deserve what you get, but if you do take care of yourself you are labeled a terrorist” seems to be the fact of these days. ‘Creeping martial law’ is how I think about it.

  24. Kelekona says:

    I had a eureka moment. We have a soda stream, so we’re not going through soda bottles. I thought that buying old frosting buckets was our only hope. Then I realized that my rum comes in thinner food-grade plastic and DH’s rum comes in glass, both adequate containers for if I want water-tight storage.

    • Pineslayer says:

      Kelekona, start slamming, or stock plenty of rum 🙂

      • Kelekona says:

        Actually, it’s stop being such an alcoholic. We already use some bottles in the beer-brewing process, but we generate a lot more than we use, and there is a reason that my husband and I have different brands. (He likes mid-grade, I tolerate low-grade.)

        Just think, if we do get armed before Teotwawki, the area is going to have an arachnophobic bitch who is stressed from having to consciously hold on to the belief that every single spider crawling on her arms is a hallucination.

  25. Pineslayer says:

    Costco has 10lb bags of Lentils now, $7
    Giving my dehydrator a workout, spinach, sweet potatoes, strawberries
    The crowning jewel for the week, SRK Carbon V, grinning ear to ear
    Found a dangerous site,

    and a great one for those who haven’t seen it,


    I have some stuff on the way from LA Police Gear, pack, paracord
    Plan on learning how braid paracord for fun items
    Oh yeah, Red Dot Scope for…don’t know yet, but it was a good price.
    I have a 550gal cistern that I want get prepped, but can’t decide on putting it up high for pressure or hiding it down low. I have a 12 volt pump that could fill it up high, but tactically it seems like a bad idea. I suppose if things get bad enough for people to want to shoot it, then I will be having other problems to deal with.

    • riverrider says:

      fk, had the same dilema on the water tank. finally decided that water is life and set the tank where it is protected. can use hand or 12v pump to get it where needed. when full it has a lot of pressure anyway. if laying seige, i would take your water out first, knowing you can’t go long w/out it.

    • K Fields says:

      I agree with riverrider, bury the tank and use a submersible low-voltage pump with a hand pump for backup.
      As each foot of height provides only 0.43 PSI of pressure, you’d need a good sized tower to match the pressure of your current domestic system and that wouldn’t be cheap due to all the weight involved.

      • riverrider says:

        careful about burying them, they must be rated for it or it may collapse. i put mine on a concrete pad under my deck. it is protected by dirt behind retaining walls. post shtf i will sandbag the only open side. good luck.

  26. Free today on Kindle—

    Surviving the Rapture and Other Apocalypse Scenarios

    –Interesting, this one you can email the author who will send a free PDF copy that you can print and place with your survival supplies! I haven’t read it and can’t vouch for anything.


    The Blast of War: A Narrative History of the Third World War
    (an alternative history in “popular history book” style, though according to one review has a bias to the right)


    H10N1 (A deadly influenza virus rages out of control.)


    Frayers starts out with world heading into ice age, civilizations disintegrating, develops into science fiction (space travel) so depends if you like that sort of thing.


    NEXT BEST HOPE (I”m not really into the military overthrow type disaster genre but you might be) http://www.amazon.com/NEXT-BEST-Revelation-Trilogy-ebook/dp/B007PSYCRM/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1333580083&sr=1-1

  27. FarmerKin says:

    Hello everyone.

    Thoughts and prayers for all those in N. Texas. Panicked when I got home and saw the news. Quickly made a call to make sure my brother was okay, and thankfully he is. Apparently all the activity was around 50 miles from him. Nerve wracking knowing what was surrounding him.

    My preps for the week were focused around dehydrating. Watched some You Tube videos by the lady from dehydrate2store.com. I had bought a cheap dehydrator about 10 years ago and never used it, so decided to get it out and quickly remembered why I had never used it. There were no directions provided in the box. After watching the videos I started experimenting. It really is not sufficient for preparing food for long-term storage, it only does a so-so job. This prompted research of dehydrators. I have heard that the Excalibur is the best, but some of the reviews revealed problems with the fan and some unsatisfactory customer service. Nothing else out there seemed to be as good, so I bit the bullet and ordered one. Hoping the problems I read about have been resolved.

    Received my Honeyville order … a case of fruit and a case of veggies. Also … and I’m so excited by my luck on this one … was able to pick up what looks to be a brand new Food Saver for $20. Doesn’t look like the cord was ever unraveled. Can hardly believe it. No box and no manual, but it does work. I’m interested in getting the vacuum seal jar lids, but it looks like they do not come with the hose. Does anyone know, was the hose supposed to come with the unit? Or maybe these are purchased separately?

    Thank you all, and have a safe week!

    • mountain lady says:

      Mine came with the hose only. I ordered the jar sealers from the Food Saver website. I use them a lot, well worth having.

      • FarmerKin says:

        Thanks Mountain Lady, that is what I suspected. I’ll have to find a replacement … maybe their website.

    • AnnetteL says:

      Hi FarmerKin,
      I was given a recommendation in regards to vacuum sealing with hose attachment. Keeping in mind if you are sealing with an electric sealer you will only be able to do canning jars and some models you have to buy regular & wide mouth attachments. I have a Pump & Seal. Non electric vacuum sealer. Comes with adhesive/rubberized “gaskets” that go on top of ANY jar lid. This gadget looks like an old school bike pump. So far works well.

    • FArmerkin: mine came with a hose. I bet you could get one from their website maybe? I use my foodsaver constantly! Almost never gets moved off of the counter and into it’s properly assigned living space (cabinet above the refrigerator!)

    • Oh yes, and one more thing, I bought the Excalibur dehydrator and love it. So far no problems. We have made jerky and have done vegetables. Then used the Foodsaver to vacuum pack them!

      • FarmerKin says:

        That’s where mine is, and I have no idea where else I would put it because my kitchen is so small. I wasn’t actually planning on getting one until after the dehydrator and then a meat slicer, but can’t pass up deals that good. I’m glad to hear you have not had any problems with your Excalibur. I ordered mine by phone and asked the customer service person about the problems I had read about. She told me the problems were in the past and that they had made some improvements to correct the issue. How long have you had yours?

        • We have only had the Excalibur a few months, but have used it alot. When I was reading customer reviews, I read some that had an issue with the fans, but they were immediate, as in the first time they used it. One purchaser actually had a fan problem with the replacement fan. So I’m hoping maybe it was a temporary thing and has been resolved. But I have noticed that it seems with all customer reviews, on any item, there seems to be a high rate of negative ones. So I’m wondering, maybe most people, (me included) get items, and if everything goes fine, they go about their merry way, and don’t take time to go back and write a good review, and it’s maybe the people who have a bad experiance that bother to write a review, thus the higher rate. I’m just guessing at that. And I guess I should do my part better and write reviews on everything I purchase.

          • FarmerKin says:

            I think you may be right about that. I need to go write a few reviews as well. Thanks for the info. Can’t wait for it to arrive … scheduled for Tuesday delivery.

    • farmer…yes, the hose does come with the unit…however, for $20 – you certainly got a bargain. Amazon sells the jar attachment – will see the hose there as well…

      If only using bags, no need to wait for the hose before you can start vac sealing…happy prepping…I stayed up till 1am for a few nights in a row, just loved sealing everything I could get my hands on. cheers.

      • FarmerKin says:

        Chloe, LOL. A picture of the dog and cat racing to hide under the couch popped in my mind as I read that. Too funny. I can’t wait to get started! Take care.

  28. Soggy Prepper says:

    I stumbled across this site that has matches for sale. I remember some saying they were having a hard time getting them.
    So thought I’d share.


  29. Pineslayer says:

    Thanks for the input on the water tank. Living here in the Rockies makes digging a blast (literally, had to dynamite my site for our foundation, solid rock), so thinking about dedicating a corner of the garage to keep it from prying eyes. Where I would put it outside, on a platform, would give us enough pressure to get it to our garden areas and into the house. The only real pressure that I would like to have is the shower, so I have another 12V pump I got out of a wrecked RV for that. A platform could act as a lookout also, shielded by RR ties it would be an epic water tower. Like I said, if people are looking to “smoke” me out by sending lead this way, whoa unto them. I can patch up a tank better than they patch up a sucking chest wound. I have a lot of smaller barrels for storage in the house for that WCS.

  30. Krystle says:

    With regards to food dehydrators, I found one at my favorite discount tool store for 25$.


    I really want one, but I absolutely can’t afford to buy a really fancy one. Does anyone know if this would be worth trying?

    • krystle…opened the link…couldn’t see if it had a temperature control…you need to be able to set the different temps.

      however, saw it was circa $25 – have a go if you can spare it…

      do some research on the different dehydrators available.

      do any of your neighbours/friends/family have a dehydrator etc. Can you get to see it when it is working etc.

      Before I committed to spending the money, I helped a friend peel/slice and stack her dehydrator trays…was so impressed with the results, bought my own with no regrets.

      Mine is an ezidri snackmaker with 15 trays, can dry a lot of stuff in one go.

      And, am constantly amazed at how cheap the prices are for you guys on these new items. Hope that helped…cheers.

      • Hey Chloe,

        After checking out the dehydrator you and others mentioned, I’ve decided to skip this one and try to save up for something more like what you have. Thanks for the advice and enthusiasm! We have to try to find things free or very cheap. We are always scouring freecycle and free craigslist. Our current plan is to hopefully be able to find some work this summer to save up for a bit of land in NH, then build our own tiny little log cabin. Totally DIY style! Anyway, thanks for the info, and encouragement!

    • FarmerKin says:


      I looked at your link and in addition to not having temp control, it also looks like it doesn’t have a fan. The one I was trying to use was similar in nature, and it took a long time to dehydrate things, but that could also be due to my location … So. Florida (humid). Another observation, the holes in the trays look pretty large. That was another problem I was having … my food was dropping down through the holes all the way down to the bottom of the unit. Depending on what you intend to dehydrate, that may or may not be an issue for you.

      For just a little bit more ($48 if you use one of their 20% off coupons), Bed Bath and Beyond has this Nesco American Harvest Snackmaster. (I’ve never tried putting a link here before, so hopefully this works.)


      It has both temp control and a fan, and the reviews I have read on it are quite good (both on their site and elsewhere). Check it out. Hope this helps.

      • Thank you so much for taking the time to check this out for me. I bookmarked your link and after some thought decided that I will wait until I can afford something silmilar to that. I inted to dehydrate anything and everything possible!

        • FarmerKin says:

          That’s great, I think you will be happier in the end that you waited for a better unit. Below is a link to the YouTube video that got me so interested in dehydrating. Her name is Tammy and her website is http://www.dehydrate2store.com. Her first two videos go over how to prepare a lot of different items for dehydrating. Subsequent videos go through how to store and cook with the dehydrated foods.


          At the end of each video it will prompt you to click to go to the next video in the series. Very informative. I think you will enjoy them. Good luck!

    • BamaBecca says:

      Krystle, you can also check yard sales and thrift stores. i got my dehydrator, still in the box and it looked brand new for only $5 at a yard sale. Its a good model and has a temp control . It only has 4 trays, but the extra trays are available for 10 bucks each.

      • BamaBecca says:

        and by the way, mine is the Nesco American Harvest Snackmaster mentioned above. 😉 good luck. I LOVE mine!

  31. Summer B says:

    Anyone have advice on storing hard candy or chocolate long term? With kids it would be nice to have some special treats:)

    • Well, I’m not an expert but I think the hard candy would last just about forever if kept very dry (eg vacuum packed perhaps) but chocolate can go rancid bc of the fat in it. I don’t have suggestions for preserving it without freezing. I just read yesterday that vacuum packed walnuts, another high-fat food, stayed good for a long time when vacuum-packed, but I don’t know if chocolate would. Or perhaps it’s possible to buy already canned chocolate, eg in syrup form? Barring that, at a last resort, perhaps keep cocoa and some kind of fat or maybe evaporated milk, and sugar, and approximate your own.

    • Kelekona says:

      I haven’t seen chocolate go inedible. Powdered chocolate seems to do fine, I haven’t tested jarred or canned ice cream toppings. Unsweetened baker’s squares seem to hold up well enough for a few years. Chocolate chips and candy bars will bloom and degrade in quality, but I made a really good fudge with a year-old opened chocolate bar.

      Hard candy seems to go all squidgy even in the freezer. I think I have a bowlful in the fridge that is working on its second year, and can be still separated from its wrapping. Try storing dry sugar and just make small amounts of rock candy. That, or rock candy sealed without humidity may last longer than candies that aren’t pure sugar.

      Look up how to make dulche de leche in the crock pot.

      Horlicks is a non-alcoholic drink made from malt extract powder. An acquired taste, but it is sweet and nutritious.

      • Soggy Prepper says:

        I was cleaning out some home school stuff out of a file cabinet and lo and behold I found a chocolate candy bar my friend had brought back from Germany. I had hidden my loot there away from the family and this one had escaped me.

        It was dated Jan. 09.
        Did I mention it was good German chocolate?

        So I ate it.

        That was a couple days ago and I’m fine. It was good and no funky taste or color and it hadn’t been wrapped special at all.

        So I can say that chocolate candy bar is good at least 3 years after it’s date.

        Once I hid Easter chocolates in the garage in a cooler and when I went out to get it to play the “bunny” it had all melted. We had a warm spell that had nuked it all. I don’t think that chocolate is quality chocolate cause it had turned kinda whitish and didn’t really taste great. And that was all within a week.

        So store the good stuff! Or cocoa powder which stores a long time and has lots of uses.

        • Well, I had a huge high quality chocolate bar that went stale fairly quickly (few months). But yes, some very old baking chocolate lasted longer. It may be more than quality here, perhaps it’s percentage of fat or milk ingredients or nuts or?

          • Soggy Prepper says:

            Natalia, you blew my theory! lol

            My 3 year old chocolate bar was from Germany, (creamy goodness of love!) not german baking chocolate. Wasn’t sure I made that clear. As hard up for chocolate as I can get I’ve never ate baking chocolate! ~grin

            I had some white chocolate almond bark go bad in about a year. Yes, I tasted it. Yes, washed my mouth out.

            • haha! I wonder whether there’s some research online anywhere that can say just what the important factors are, and what would help the best kind to last even longer.

  32. MamaBetsy says:

    Wow, it’s been a long time since I posted! DD #2 is now home from rehab and is doing great–going to her meetings, meeting new clean and sober friends, back in church and wanting to serve the Lord. I’m one happy mama. So now we have 4 adults in our happy household, and it’s a little cramped. We are building a new master bedroom, including a 2nd bathroom and a LARGE storage closet. Should be done in about a month or 6 weeks.

    DH has been busy in his “therapy center,” the garden. We are planting the regular things–green beans, squash, zucchini, cucumbers, tomatoes, etc. But this year we have also added strawberries, a few potatoes, and broccoli. We will also plant sweet potatoes when the slips are available. Our granddaughter wanted her corn-on-the-cob, so she helped Poppy plant 3 rows of it over the weekend. I am asking for some blueberry bushes for Mother’s Day!

    Not much in the way of grocery store preps. Feeding two additional adults doesn’t leave a lot of extra money for extra groceries. They will both have jobs soon, though, so hopefully things will loosen up a bit financially. I did see that Homeland has a great 10 for $10 sale this weekend so I will try to make it out there to pick up some things.

    I was disapointed to discover that both Hunts and Del Monte have reduced the size of their “tall” cans of spaghetti sauce to 24 ounces, down from 29 oz and, not TOO long ago, 32 oz. I really miss those few ounces, as I am now feeding more people and it makes a difference. I may have to start using 2 cans instead of 1. Every time I try to stretch it with a little plain tomato sauce, everyone notices it and complains!

    Hope all is well with the Wolf Pack. I will try to check in more often, but my life is usually not really my own! Two recovering addicts under one roof sometimes makes things a little chaotic! Please pray that God give me wisdom to deal with the issues that arise,”one minute at a time.”

    • I keep a large container of Italian Seasoning and if I run out of spaghetti sauce I use regular tomato sauce with lots of Italian Seasoning and garlic added…garlic powder in a pinch but fresh-grated makes it pop–super easy and, I think, better than prepared sauce, as you can add more of the seasonings and make it stronger flavoured. Perhaps you could try adding those two items next time you have to stretch the sauce? Sorry if this is old hat to you.

    • mamabetsy…will pray for you, and your family.

      Strength and courage – cheers.

    • Ready2Go says:

      Add a bit of sugar or honey and some Italian seasoning along with the tomato sauce…they will love it.

  33. To the Wolf Pack and especially those in Texas, a friend Officer Jaime Padron of Austin Police Department was killed in the line of duty today. We served in the Marines together, he was a father of and a loving wife. Please keep them in your prayers.

    • Hunker-Down says:

      Will do.

    • Copperhead says:

      Have heard that on my news today. So sorry for him and his family…quite senseless. His two little girls and wife and rest of his family are in my prayers. My sympathy to you, too, Jarhead o3.

    • I read how it happened. Very Sad. Many prayers out to his family.

      • Mexneck, if I could be given 5 minutes with the guy (like every other officer in the area wants) I know he will be give head of the line service for an execution. I saw the guys picture, he better not plead insanity.

    • cosmolined says:

      Crap. Prayers sent.

    • Jarhead…sincerest condolences on the passing of your friend….will pray for his family to get through this tough time, and for strength for the widow to carry on raising the children. Lord hear our prayers.

      • jarhead- i am sorry to hear about the policeman- my son is a cop too and i an sensitive to those that serve us

    • worrisome says:

      So sorry Jarhead. Prayers for all of you!

    • BamaBecca says:

      prayers for the family and for you Jarhead. This is so sad.

    • Encourager says:

      Jarhead, so sorry to hear about your friend. Am praying for his family – and for you. Blessings.

  34. Jarhead: will do. So sorry to hear. I have a son who is a cop and it’s a constant worry in the back of my mind.

  35. Lantana says:

    Officer Padron’s family has been in our prayers since the news first broke here; you will be too, as you mourn the loss of your friend and fellow Marine.

    Texas has suffered a tremendous blow, to lose such a fine man.

    • Lantana, thanks. Its such a smaller world when someone you know is over 1,000 miles away and it has been good to hear the employees tackled him. One thing I know about Texas is justice will be served.

  36. charliebuck says:

    Jarhead,sorry that you lost your buddy,and that his family lost a husband and father.My wife is in law enforcement and it worries me to no end.There are too many criminals out there,and the sad part is they seem to have more rights than those who don’t break the law.We need to start hanging them like they did not so long ago.Your friend and his family,and you also,are in my prayers,brother.Be Safe.

  37. grannyj says:

    Prayers have gone up to our Heavenly father for Officer Padron and his family. Today is Easter, and the Resurrection of Christ! We know he is in Heaven with Jesus!

    Happy Easter to all, and on a note of concern – did I miss something? today is Sunday, and I see no WDYDTPTW posted for yesterday. Is MD ok? or is my computer wonky?

  38. Jarhead
    So very sorry for your lost and the lost to the family. May God Bless this family with happiness and courage to follow on.