What I Did to Prep This Week

What I did to Prep This Week – Week 12 – Sep 9th – 15th 2018

prep week 12

Well Pack, it was a week of frugality, functionality, and flooding here on our survival homesteading retreat. I could call it a three Fs kind of week, but thanks to the flooding and some barbed wire entangling, there was another F tossed about by a few of our tribe members during work details…but I won’t chat about those outbursts here.

First, the flooding. We had weeks of no rain and beautifully hot temperatures (I really should have been born in the South) and then suddenly, the chill of fall (below 85, sometimes not even 70!) crept in and brought with it our second flood season.



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A nice healthy balance of sunshine and rain would be awesome, but southern Ohio weather never seems to function that way.

The water had been up the far part of the driveway by the gate a few hours earlier. It was shocking that it went down during the rain, even though it was a brief lull from the heavy downpours. A bank down stream must have given way or something of that sort, which allowed some of the flooding to become diverted – but only briefly. Several more hours later, the water was back up around the gate again.

Brea had to run out for an appointment and went early and rushed back because we knew flooding was on the way. I could have gotten her back over in my trusty old Dodge farm truck – but I was only going through that once and definitely without telling Bobby about it until after.

But Colt had a doctor’s appointment the next day, and Brea decided she and the grandkiddos would stay overnight with her friend Emma to avoid having to cancel and wait forever and a day to get back in because of the high water. The small town where we used to live becomes and island when it floods, so her plan was a valid one.

She needed some toiletries and changes of clothes so I double bagged them and used my lasso to get them across the creek to her – we got it accomplished first go round!

using a lasso to move a bag across a creek

The rain curtailed a lot of our outdoor work details, but being preppers, a plan B of chores that kept you mostly out of the downpours, was ready to go. The only thing wrong with our new house was a distinct lack of storage.

While we increased our land from a large corner small town lot to 56 acres when we moved, we went from a very large 2-story house down to about 1,000 or a little more square feet. No stairs from my cracking knees (thanks to my competitiveness playing sports and then coaching for years) to climb each morning and less to clean, but almost no where to put all of our stuff.

I love to move, must have something to do with my gypsy heritage, and sold or gave away all but the essentials and sentimental things I owned before we moved. My beloved Bobby on the other hand, did let me purge a little of his junk, but his junque filled the largest Uhauls they make 13 times – on top of truck and SUV loads.

The attached garage on this house will become a living room and library in the spring when he builds a detached garage. The garage is filled full of important tools and boxes of books at the moment. The pole barn is overly filled and not in a neat way, getting the myriad of junk and junque, and general stuff in their completely put away right, is nearing the top of the to do list.

So, the rain gave us time to work on our storage issues and a few other indoor homeschool classroom issues. Ok, there was no issue in the classroom – playroom – grandkiddos sleeping area, but I wanted to change the theme of the room to bring the outdoors in to make the space more exciting, imagination sparking, and to offer the chance to do some type of outdoor awareness and skills training even during the long winter months.

This is one of several cabinets we made out of junque from Bobby’s piles. It is old barn wood from the gorgeous 1800s era barn we had to partially take down due to safety issues. The facing on the doors is from scrap tin sheets that had been on the roof of my horse barn that had long since needed replaced.

wooden cabinet

I did not want to go purchase door pulls and decided to use fencing staples to continue the rustic look and make use of what we already had.

wooden cabinet close-up

I clear coated the tin on both sides, I love the rusty look but did not want it flaking off and winding up in the mouths of the grandkiddos. We are using the same tin and barn wood to frame a closet around the exposed hot water tank and well bladder in the bathroom.

Oh, did I ever mention this house has only 1 bathroom – that should have be added to the downfall list but since we lived on secluded 56 acres, you can go outside if you need to or in one of our camping compost commodes situated by campers or the barn.

As many of you will recall me noting, our home was a hunting lodge that came with bare concrete floors and exposed pour concrete walls half-way up. I looked at it as a blank slate – at least there was no dang wallpaper to remove, that is never fun. Now, we will have an eclectic farmhouse making great use of free materials that double as prepper storage spots…some with hidden compartments.

We also found time to paint the rest of the kitchen and living room area. The cabinets were handmade using wood from the property by the former owner. I am going to use some corrugated metal taken off the old hog pen as a backsplash behind the stove and sink.

My cast iron lids, pots, and skillets will be hung along the wall above the counters as a storage space saver. The counter tops were junky old laminate that had seen better days. We decided to make new countertops out of stained and maybe intentionally burnt, plywood. So far, the panels are turning out really cool and will be installed this weekend. Anytime you can save money on a necessary home improvement project, it leaves more funds in your pocket to use for valuable preps.

play and learn room

The tree in the multi-purpose learning, sleeping, playing room will be ultra cool looking and interactive when I am done with it. There will be a little bridge dangling between the front branches that the kids will use their engineering skills to help me make.

Then I am going to have the grandkiddos and some tribe kiddos help me make Waldorf style bendy dolls and peg dolls that look like gnomes and fairies to “live” in and around the tree and stump. I will turn that handicraft project into a comprehension lesson based upon a book I am going to read while the kids tasked with gathering all of the supplies and crafting tools on a list I will give them from various bins. Unlike my beloved, all of my creative and educational materials are all organized.

Each child will have to work in tandem with both a buddy and then as part of the large group to get their parts of the project completed properly – another valuable self-reliance skill. One leader always emerges when we engage in projects like this.

We are going to make replicas of leaves from trees growing on our survival retreat to place on the branches using Velcro. Why not glue them, you ponder? Because I want the children to be able to pluck the right leaf from the tree when called upon to do so during learning sessions. I have a basket of real nuts, wood fruit, and blossoms made from felt for the kiddos to use to match what the tree produces with each leaf.

So see, my enchanted forest themed makeover of the room was not just part of a creative whim, it really does have a survival purpose, as well. Once the tree is completed, I can move on to reinventing the rest of the room – and it is going to be a blast doing so on rainy and cold days!

making a tree from a tree stump and branches

To make the tree, we (meaning my beloved) drilled holes into the stump be lugged into the house. Next we placed the branches into their respective holes and drilled three holes into them.

After that, we simply screwed the branches into place and the foundation of the tree was complete and awaiting adornments by the tribe kiddos and myself.

screwing branches into a tree stump

My Buckeye chicks are thriving and will soon officially be considered pullets. We started out with 10 and lost two that just keeled over, right off the bat. A snake snuck into the chicken run and swallowed three chicks hole – made me curse snakes which is something I rarely do unless it is a copperhead or a rattlesnake. We have five left, two of which will be roosters – so baby Buckeyes coming this spring!

This week’s questions

1. How have you (or will you) address preps storage issues at your house?
2. What junque do you have laying around your place that could be repurposed – and into what
3. Is prepping for small or medium natural disasters you are prone to a focal point of your survival plan?

And…how did you prep this week?



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Tara Dodrill

About Tara Dodrill

Tara Dodrill is a homesteading and survival journalist and author. She lives on a small ranch with her family in Appalachia. She has been both a host and frequent guest on preparedness radio shows. In addition to the publication of her first book, 'Power Grid Down: How to Prepare, Survive, and Thrive after the Lights go Out', Dodrill also travels to offer prepping tips and hands-on training and survival camps and expos.
View all posts by Tara Dodrill →

73 thoughts on “What I did to Prep This Week – Week 12 – Sep 9th – 15th 2018

  1. I earned my brown belt this week. Taekwondo is getting a lot harder. The forms are getting more complex. The physical demands are getting more intense. I was invited to the black belt classes. (I am a minimum of eight months away for testing for my black belt.) I got my butt handed to me big time. But I loved every minute of it.

    As for preps, dh and I did routine dentist visits. We had our teeth cleaned—no cavities, but I did have to get a filling. I need two more fillings. I have a receding gum line. This is hereditary.

    We did go out and get a few more things just in case Florence decided to dip further south. We just picked up more “fast food” like chicken noodle soup, ramen and other canned foods. (We don’t really eat this stuff. It is quick food for emergencies. We donate all the “crap food” after hurricane season.)

    We also picked up another two cases of water. We keep six cases on hand at all times. We have a water barrel and a special hose to fill it up. And we have a Big Berkey. We also have one of those bathtub liners that holds I think 100 gallons. So we are good on food and water.

    We have a gas stove and a gas water heater, so we are good on cooking and bathing (provided we have good water). We have a camping stove and a volcano stove. We stock plenty of propane.

    We are 50 miles (roughly) from both coasts. So our county is a host county. Folks from the coasts evacuate here.

    I saw a funny but brilliant picture today—how to create an instant toilet. Take a five gallon bucket and place a pool noodle around 95 percent of the rim of the bucket (to look like a toilet seat). Then fill with cat litter. The handle can be used as a toilet paper holder.

        1. TOP, I have used a rear naked choke hold in several confrontations. It is a very effective move and ended the fight quickly while working as a bouncer in bars.

          USCCA is OK but I do have a lawyer on retainer.

          Rule number one only shoot in self defense and make the statement:

          I was in fear of my life.

      1. Thor,

        I can take krav maga for no additional money with my academy membership. (Well, except for the cost of testing and equipment.) But there is only so much I can learn at once. I do taekwondo and cardio kickboxing. Eventually I will get to krava maga. We do self-defense in taekwondo. But krav maga is self-defense on steroids. I spoke with my instructor and he said the difference between krav maga and taekwondo is that the latter is focused on tournaments and the former is focused on breaking bones.

        HaHa. My husband asked me once day after class if Senior Master was teaching me any self-defense. I said, “grab me around the neck like you are choking me.” Then I performed the technique. He was stunned. My son was so impressed he had us do it again so he could post to Facebook. LOL

        1. Bam Bam,

          I can take krav maga for no additional money with my academy membership. (Well, except for the cost of testing and equipment.)

          I’m not sure what additional equipment you would need to train in the Krav Maga Fighting system since it is a set of military self-defense techniques developed for the Israel Defense Forces. As I understand it, it is derived from a combination of techniques from boxing, wrestling, aikido, judo and karate, along with realistic fight training. I’ve taken a bit of Aikido and some Krav Maga and they are both effective systems for self defense, assuming you don’t mind really hurting the opponent. As for testing, you should eventually get to the point where learning the new techniques become more important than obtaining a new rank. I stopped @ Nikyu (2nd degree brown) years ago; but, have kept learning new things.

          I spoke with my instructor and he said the difference between krav maga and taekwondo is that the latter is focused on tournaments and the former is focused on breaking bones.

          I sort of agree with your instructor that the difference between most karate and real self defense systems is mostly survival vs. trophies (and really hurting the opponent by breaking bones or dislocating joints), LOL.
          HaHa. My husband asked me once day after class if Senior Master was teaching me any self-defense. I said, “grab me around the neck like you are choking me.” Then I performed the technique.
          There are many simple and effective; but, devastating techniques that must be used carefully, since a little effort can do much damage without practicing the finesse required.
          If you can take Aikido or Krav Maga I would highly recommend it.

    1. Bam Bam,

      I earned my brown belt this week. Taekwondo is getting a lot harder. The forms are getting more complex. The physical demands are getting more intense. I was invited to the black belt classes. I got my butt handed to me big time. But I loved every minute of it.

      Congratulations on the promotion. I assume Taekwondo has only a single brown belt level, unlike some of the Okinawan styles. As you move up the ranks the forms should get harder; but, at your young age, it should be much easier than us old guys, LOL.

      As for preps, dh and I did routine dentist visits. We had our teeth cleaned—no cavities, but I did have to get a filling. I need two more fillings.

      As you’ll see in my list, I had a root canal and will be getting a crown next month. I wish I still had the teeth I had at your age.

      We did go out and get a few more things just in case Florence decided to dip further south. We just picked up more “fast food” like chicken noodle soup, ramen and other canned foods. (We don’t really eat this stuff. It is quick food for emergencies. We donate all the “crap food” after hurricane season.)

      We use the store what you eat and eat what you store rule so nothing goes to waste; but, then again, we don’t have to put up with hurricanes here.

      We also have one of those bathtub liners that holds I think 100 gallons. So we are good on food and water.

      The water BOB (Bathtub Oblong Bladder) holds up to 100 gallons; but, it depends a lot on the size of your tub. You also have to fill it while you have water available.

      We have a gas stove and a gas water heater, so we are good on cooking and bathing (provided we have good water).

      We are also dependent on gas; but, that is our choice, since many gas appliances need no electricity to operate.

      I saw a funny but brilliant picture today—how to create an instant toilet. Take a five gallon bucket and place a pool noodle around 95 percent of the rim of the bucket (to look like a toilet seat). Then fill with cat litter. The handle can be used as a toilet paper holder.

      I’ve seen that one; but, will refrain if possible. We keep several 5-gallon buckets full of water on hand, specifically for toilet flushing. We also have one of those bedside toilets that could be used in a pinch; but, times would have to be desperate.

      1. We have two brown and two red (recommended and decided). So if I stay on schedule I can test for my black belt in eight months.

        We have one of those huge garden bathtubs. It’s so big the hot water runs out before it is full.

  2. Bam Bam,

    Congrats on the brown belt. All I have is a black belt in dirty street fighting.

    As far as the five-gallon bucket toilet, if you intend to use it for any length of time, you’ll need to line it with a couple of large trash bags and put the kitty litter in those. I have one along with lots of trash bags and kitty litter. You can also do the same thing with a regular toilet if the water is shut off and bowl empty.

  3. Did my usual shopping and added to my grocery stash.

    Continuing my chiropractor visits. They help at first, but the back flares up while dealing with granddaughter. She’s getting really active and wants grandpa in on everything. She doesn’t quite understand why grandpa has to sit and rest for a bit. Everything else works OK, just the back is causing problems. The glucosamine sulfate seems to be doing a good job on my knees. Thanks to Bam Bam for the tip.

    Granddaughter and I went out the other day and collected sticks and twigs for my rocket stove. She had a great time and learned to find the sticks I need quickly. She can also spot acorns a mile away and knows the word. She insisted on collecting some “for squirrels.” I wanted to get more sticks, but it started to rain and my back started to quit. I think we’ll do it again this coming week.

    I’m getting a bit of something in my chest. An occasional soft cough too. I’m taking elderberry syrup for it and it doesn’t seem to be getting any worse.

    Tara’s Questions:
    1. Storage issues: As I live in an apartment, I am a little tight for storage. I have a lot of stuff in plastic boxes stored under my beds, and some in my bedroom closet. My spare room closet holds other supplies, such as the five gallon bucket potty, trash bags, kitty litter, etc. My living room has large plastics totes holding medical supplies and equipment. My office closet is mainly the weapons/ammo storage room.

    2. Junque: Not too much laying adrift that could be repurposed. I suppose I could locate some around the area, if necessary. I live in a pretty nice town and complex and they keep it well cleaned up.

    3. Prepping for small/medium disasters: I prep primarily for hurricanes since I’m in Florida. Although I feel I am prepared for some other issues, such as civil disturbances and the like.

      1. Bam Bam,

        I take Motrin, but icing is difficult. I can’t reach around well enough to do it myself. Granddaughter isn’t much help yet.

          1. Bam Bam,

            That seems like a clever solution. I doubt if I’ll be able to ice more than once or twice a day on granddaughter days, but that is better than nothing.

            Thanks for the tip. No sense seeing a doctor. I’ll just ask Bam Bam. 🙂

          2. Zulu,

            Get one of these cooling pads. While it is room temperature, duct tape the pad to an old oversized belt or bungie cord. On days that you have your granddaughter, you can tie the belt around your waste and keep moving. LOL Problem solved!

  4. Puppy is growing more…..along with his appetite. He is so active and pouts on rainy days when we don’t go out and play…LOL

    I was finally able to cut the grass and trim. When the Mrs. was in the hospital I pretty much neglected the yard. Puppy was happy, he could run faster….he made-up a game of hiding the tennis balls in the grass. He has an evil smile….LOL

    I installed the new battery in the tractor, put air in a low tire using the power source, its a portable 12 volt battery with a built-in charging system and outlets. Plugged in a car portable air compressor and wa-la….

    The power source also has other plug designs that fit the base camp LED lights from the Kodiak solar generator that I have so I tested it out. The plugs are rated at 3,6 and 9 volts so I tried the 9 volt first. Almost as bright as the 12 volts it was designed to run on. This is really cool as it has a regular light built-in but this only uses 6 watts.

    Charged ALL rechargeable AA and AAA batteries before Florence hit the coast. Thought it could get bad but it turned to the North.

    Thoughts on Solar observatories being shutdown ??? I think it 6 or 7 now. Hmmm hiding something……

    Are they here….LOL

    1. 1.How have you (or will you) address preps storage issues at your house?
      2. What junque do you have laying around your place that could be repurposed – and into what
      3. Is prepping for small or medium natural disasters you are prone to a focal point of your survival plan?

      1. Improvise, adapt and overcome.

      2. Wood,metal fencing material,concrete pads , tarps, wires, tape,plastic sheets and old dog food bags. …Repairs, sandbags.

      3. Most definitely,

      Power outages…backup power supplies, generators ,gas and solar 6 ways to cook food. Big berkey

      Floods… 4×4 truck, sandbags, kayak,( lifejackets)….LOL ( luckily I am on a high ground)

      Downed trees…chainsaws, axe, tow chain to remove trees from roads.

      Snow, shovels, sled, 4×4, firewood, Parka’s. Ect.

      Food,water,first aid kits, fire extinguishers, means of self-defense……

    2. Thor1,

      I installed the new battery in the tractor, put air in a low tire using the power source, its a portable 12 volt battery with a built-in charging system and outlets. Plugged in a car portable air compressor and wa-la….

      I’ve been doing the same thing with my Ryobi ONE+ system. Lots of tools; but, the inflator/deflator is really nifty. I’d never used a lot of battery tools until I was gifted some of these, and now I’m hooked.

      Charged ALL rechargeable AA and AAA batteries before Florence hit the coast. Thought it could get bad but it turned to the North.

      Good to see it missed you. Over the years we’ve purchased enough chargers to pretty much keep all of our unused batteries on constant charge, and for those not charging, we constantly circulate them to maintain them at full charge.

      Thoughts on Solar observatories being shutdown ??? I think it 6 or 7 now. Hmmm hiding something

      Most of what they do can be accomplished by SOHO so it may also be just an expensed cutting process; but, from the data I’ve seen, there are indications that much of our climate variability is from solar variability, and if that gets out, the global climate change crowd will lose their minds and their attempts to tax all of us will lose another excuse.

      1. Bam Bam,

        The aliens are coming to get their spaceship back from Roswell and the feds don’t want anyone to see them

        That’s not possible, since everyone knows they move those spacecraft and occupants to Wright field (now Wright Patterson AFB) in Ohio back in the 1950’s.

          1. Bam, the whole town is a ghost town now….ooow

            The transport is working or is this the start of the rapture…

        1. I was stationed at Roswell in the early 1960s. Looked for those darned Martians everywhere and couldn’t find any sign of them! We did manage to burn up a KC-135, a B-52 and 7 Atlas ICBMs in a 3 year span. We had a total of 12 Atlases initially. Those things were fueled with RP-1 (kerosene) and liquid oxygen. They lived in silos. Every time we tried to raise one, fuel and defuel it, it exploded. Happened 7 times ! I think the Russians were laughing their okoles off.

          1. BTW, stopped there three years ago. It is thriving now. Walker AFB is now used by various commercial aircraft enterprises. Still has those great long runways.

  5. I have been purging our house again it is amazing how much we don’t need anymore lots of knick knacks, a few kitchen items. I have our house, all wrapped up the rains have come back I have chopped all my bushes back, and my raspberry plants, ready for winter. I’ve been picking cherry tomatoes, and my hot peppers, I will be dehydrating the hot peppers. I bought a box of peaches last weekend and finally got them all canned up got 14 quarts out of that box. I did do a rotation in my pantry and moved all cans food 18 into my Lazy Susan, and made room in my pantry and resupplied my pantry.

    Hubby, and I went down to retrive our travel trailer, the new manager of the service department was GREAT, they recaulked, and added two drains on the slide out so the rain shoots out those drains instead of puddling on the silde out topper. They also fixed our floor it was soft and rotted wood from our couch to the middle of the bedroom at least 10 feet was replaced everything was done correct and for free my insurance gave them $7800.00 to put on a new slide topper and fix the damage that happened in a freak snow storm Feb of 2017, after we picked it up we started having troubles when we had rain and we took it down last summer, they said they fixed it they did not so we had to wrap it up and made them deal with it this year and got it done right, and without cost. Now we just have to wait until we get sun this week to wipe it down and wrap it up and then get it winterize for the season.. It feels like a new coach, and now we can stay on top of all the maintence it’s only 5 years old and between insurance and us we have put $ 5600. 00 so a total of $13400.00. This trailer, cost us more to fix then it was worth it but now we should be good for a long, long, time and the correct cover for our trailer, will ensure us that it will over winter, we will also check on it weekly and I need more Irish Spring to put on the tires to keep the critters away.

    1 question When our water heater, went out 7 years ago we choose to get a On Demand Hot water unit, so the water heater closet, became my pantry, I have never had this much storage ever. I have three shelves, and the floor we had a new tile floor put in at the same time so I can store large cans or large juice bottles.

    2 questions No junk, we did a house add on 14 years ago all junk was disposed off then we saved a couple of windows, that I use to keep plants warm during the winter.

    3 question I just prepare for everything job loss, weather, earthquakes, floods, Snow if we get it.

  6. Preps this week include taking advantage of a canned good sale at the local grocery store and buying ten pounds of onions at the farm stand. Few of our onions made it passed the green onion stage thanks to DH wanting a green onion at every meal. Non-purchase preps included replacing a hose clamp on the dishwasher, canning more salsa, pickles and beets, curing winter squash and hiking double digit mileage. I am wondering if there will be very many people able to walk more than a few miles if something really goes topsy turvy.

    I have a question for those with sweet potato expertise. Is there a way to determine if they are ready to dig without pulling them from the ground? The calendar says they need two more weeks, but one of the plants appears to be growing out of a tuber.

    Answers to Tara’s questions:
    1) We are pretty good on storage although I would like some more cabinets for my jars. We have re-purposed space in the kids rooms since they have all moved out.
    2) We recycle what we can and give away or toss the rest. For example, I used old metal soffit as part of the fencing around the garden to hide it from the rabbits.
    3) Our primary natural threats are blizzards, flash floods and wildfires. We are on the highest ground in town but can get cut off occasionally from a creek. We saved for a whole house generator tied into the natural gas line which has almost paid for itself because power tends to be iffy around here.

    Prayers to all in the Carolinas and the Philippines. Stay safe everyone.

    1. Sweet potatoes grow pointing down near the main stalk. Just start scratching away the soil there, when you find a potato work your fingers around it to see how large it is, be careful not to sever the thin root connecting it to the vine. If big enough you can simply pull that one out and eat. If you do that to several plants and they all have large ones the you can dig them.

      By any chance do you know the variety? I planted Dianes, Georgia Jets, Nancy Hall, and Yellow Jewel. Only the Jets made any big ones, the Nancy Hall and Yellow Jewel made nothing.

      1. Daddio7:
        Thank you. I planted Georgia Jets. Two slips in a lasagna bed and the rest in tiered boxes. Those surviving the transplant are thriving and trailing all over the place.

      2. The only thing I am sure of is they must be harvested before frost Kills the vines. Most varieties require a minimum of 120- 150 days/ info from research…..re: my trial this year, . more in my post.That said, I have grabbled a few. and will wait as late as possible before digging mine.

    2. Whole house generators are great. We live too far out to hook onto the nat gas line – even though it runs through the edge of our upper pasture, no one out of town can get gas. Our whole house generator is the multi-fuel kind – gas, kerosene, or diesel. We have nat gas wall mount heaters and stove and soon the hot water tank will be gas too. When the one that came with the house died it was on a late Saturday afternoon while Bobby was in the middle of another big must finish project and didn’t have time to go through the complete conversion he had planned and simply ran out and got a replacement one and hooked it up. We have a large natural gas holding tank that gets filled twice a year and have never run out – although I was getting a little concerned we might need to schedule a third fill since last winter was so bad. We can cook on our wood stove and have never once turned on the electric furnace that was installed right before we moved in, so we could have survived fine without it.

  7. I always forget to answer the questions.

    1.How have you (or will you) address preps storage issues at your house?

    I have plenty of storage. The stuff that can go in the garage lives in the garage. Food and temperature sensitive items get stashed in closets.

    2. What junque do you have laying around your place that could be repurposed – and into what

    We don’t collect a lot of junque. If we don’t need it, we donate it to the Salvation Army for the tax write-off.

    3. Is prepping for small or medium natural disasters you are prone to a focal point of your survival plan?

    We prep for hurricanes. My home was built post-Andrew. (After Hurricane Andrew, the state of Florida upped building codes.) When I had the house built, I went with gas stove and gas water heater. When we lose power, I can still have hot water and I can still cook as usual. One of the smartest hurricane preps I’ve learned is to take gallon sized ziplock bags, fill them with water and stick them in the freezers. That keeps the food frozen longer so we don’t have to run the generator as much. When the ice melts, we have potable water.

  8. Very little prep purchases this week. I did pick up some 308 SP hunting ammo; with hunting season around the corner it is on sale (regular about $20, got it for $12).

    I was busy getting a men’s Bible Study Fellowship satellite group started here and the DW was at a 4-day conference in Las Vegas.

    For this being Preparedness Month, I have not seen too many really great sales. Our local grocery had better pricing than I see on-line.

    My blood sugar has been up too high for the last week or so. Finally figured out what I was doing wrong, numbers are better now.

    Winterized the camper this weekend. Not looking as if we are going to get to use it again until Spring.

    Prays for those affected by the hurricane. Looks like it will be quite a wet mess.

    Questions:

    1. We are currently building a better storage “facility”. We have moved over 1/2 of our current inventory to a temporary space and rebuilding shelves and flooring for what we have. Construction got delayed a month due to work considerations.
    2. “Jungue” is already being reworked or disposed of due to space constraints.
    3. My hope is that my long-term preps will also cover short/medium natural disasters. This is where we started.

  9. I was out of state at a conference most of the week, and decided to take a “crash day” yesterday to just sit around and rest, so not much in the way of preps. Need to process some of my farm share stuff. The weather here can’t decide what to do – we had the heat on last weekend, but now it’s back to the low 80s. The worker bees finished the new stamped-concrete front walkways and porch, they just need to come back and caulk the seam along the house. Looks so much better than the mishmash of brick and fieldstone.

    Questions:
    1. We have a fairly good sized house with a fully finished cellar, so storage isn’t an issue. It will become one when we downsize, I’m sure.
    2. In Maine the word for junque is “culch,” that pile o’ stuff in the yard. We don’t have one. We did a major clean-out when we had the cellar redone, but still have more to go. If I haven’t used that electric waffle iron in 5 years, why am I holding on to it?
    3. We can lose power in thunderstorms or snowstorms, or when somebody down the road hits a utility pole – in other words, year-round. The memory is still with me of 8 days without power after the Ice Storm of ’98.

  10. Hi Tara & all,

    First, the flooding. We had weeks of no rain and beautifully hot temperatures (I really should have been born in the South) and then suddenly, the chill of fall (below 85, sometimes not even 70!) crept in and brought with it our second flood season.

    We’re in good shape here from any water, and even though the creek on our property ofteen overflows, it does so to the west where there is only a field and no buildings. It seems the pioneers who picked this place 100 years ago knew not to build on a flood plane, like many of the new developments seem to do. We do have a few communities in the area that are flood prone; but, we are not. The flood free location and the old barns were one of the things that made us fall in love with this place, even though it was a fix’er upper.
    Below 85 ° is freezing?
    Well today here it is now 85° and hit a high if almost 88°; but, the evenings in the 60’s are perfect for me.

    A nice healthy balance of sunshine and rain would be awesome, but southern Ohio weather never seems to function that way.

    Nor does most of the rest of Ohio, LOL.

    While we increased our land from a large corner small town lot to 56 acres when we moved, we went from a very large 2-story house down to about 1,000 or a little more square feet. No stairs from my cracking knees (thanks to my competitiveness playing sports and then coaching for years) to climb each morning and less to clean, but almost no where to put all of our stuff.

    I moved from a three story nearly 3000 ft2 house to one that’s a bit under 2400; but, we have major storage in some 100 year old barns, and plan to add another small building yet this fall to replace an old brooder house that finally came apart. For my age I’m pretty lucky on the old joints, since I did martial arts and lots of running, backpacking, and hiking in my youth and so far, so good. In the end we traded that old large city house on a corner lot for this one with 8 acres and no mortgage. This one does have stairs I traverse many times daily. I think that keeps my joints loose. With 4 bedrooms all chock full of both junk & junque we are constantly thinning out the herd so to speak.

    Oh, did I ever mention this house has only 1 bathroom – that should have be added to the downfall list but since we lived on secluded 56 acres, you can go outside if you need to or in one of our camping compost commodes situated by campers or the barn.

    We also have only a single bathroom which is great with just the two of us empty nesters; but, there was a time, LOL. The problem with adding another bathroom as I had been asked to do for years is that they require complex plumbing, something the DW and DD didn’t seem to understand completely.

    My cast iron lids, pots, and skillets will be hung along the wall above the counters as a storage space saver.

    We’re doing that along a wall in our new summer kitchen, that will hopefully be completed and ready to use by spring.

    1. How have you (or will you) address preps storage issues at your house?

    Mostly by decluttering the rooms that have filled with too much stuff over the years, although it is a bit overwhelming. We still have pageant and prom gowns from my DD who has been gone since 2009; but, don’t even get me started here.

    2. What junque do you have laying around your place that could be repurposed – and into what

    The top floor of our granary has a shop and enough electrical supplies to last us and a few others for years. We also have tons of lumber and other wood as well as fencing, and quite honestly who knows what and how much. When a project comes up, we simply look around for “stuff” before purchasing anything.

    3. Is prepping for small or medium natural disasters you are prone to a focal point of your survival plan?

    No specific focal point. Just being prepared for anything and everything, since you rarely ever really know what’s coming at you until it arrives. Weather radios, alternate communications, multiple ways for water and heat / cooking as well as alternate power sources are just insurance premiums we pay, and hope to never really need.

    This past week we did or acquired the following:
    1. Attended the Findlay (Ohio) Hamfest, one of the better ones in our area and acquired:
    • A new soldering station at a good price
    • An NOS Realistic (Radio Shack) DSP-40 audio Digital Signal Processor with speaker. When added to my HF transceiver this will automatically clear up noisy environments and eliminate some annoying heterodyne tones.
    • A 6 inch threaded UHF barrel connector (SO-239) to run coax through my wall to the outside.
    • Four protective end caps for the connector above that will also fit and protect some of my antennas while in storage or transport.
    • Two 12 inch pieces (one each red & black) of shrink wrap for power connections to radios
    2. A friend helped me program my DMR radio and the openSPOT network interface to allow access to the state, national, and international talk groups. Ohio ARES (Amateur Radio Emergency Services) is standardizing on this as a primary communications mode.
    3. As part of getting my teeth in better shape, I had a root canal on 9/11. That date somehow seems appropriate. Next month we’ll fit a crown onto that now repaired tooth. Lest we ever forget that date, I think this is appropriate: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p6yLQRF-cEU and then of course another fotting video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5s9KLWnIjeQ
    4. Received a second Midland WR120B weather Radio from Amazon for my office / lab / radio shack since the first one works so well.
    5. Received another Globe Electric 32″ Multi-Joint Desk Lamp with Metal Clamp from Amazon. I use a lot of these with LED bulbs. Since they can provide versatile area lighting with little power consumption.
    6. Lit the pilot lights on our ventless propane heaters. The first time this is done after being off all summer takes as much as 5 minutes to get the gas flowing the 150-200 feet from the tanks, prime the line and burn off the accumulated summer dust.
    7. Received 3 Res-Q-Me knockoffs from Ebay. While I suspect they will work OK, I’ll not deal with this vendor again
    8. Started watching USA networks “The Purge”. There is even an episode called “The Purge Shopping Channel” where they will be advertising things one might need to be ready for Purge day.
    9. Mixed Veggie, Herb, & Flower Seeds Bundle (30+) From woot.com. Shipped by Wine Country Connect, LLC
    10. These are all non GMO Heirloom seeds by Mountain Valley Seeds
    • Basil
    • Beet (Detroit Dark Red)
    • Cantaloupe (Hales Best Jumbo)
    • Carrot (Scarlet Nantes)
    • Cilantro
    • Corn Poppy (annual)
    • Cosmos (Sensation mix annual)
    • Cucumber
    • Cucumber Marketmore
    • Hot Pepper Jalapeno
    • Kale
    • Lettuce (Gourmet Mix)
    • Marigold mixture (annual)
    • Morning Glory (annual)
    • Okra
    • Onion Utah Yellow Sweet
    • Pumpkin (Jack Be Little)
    • Radish (French Breakfast)
    • Snap Pea (Sugar Snap)
    • Snapdragon mixture (annual)
    • Spinach Giant Noble
    • Summer Squash (2)
    • Sweet Pepper (Big Red)
    • Swiss chard
    • Thyme
    • Tomato
    • Tomato (Hanson)
    • Tomato Red Cherry
    • Watermelon Crimson Sweet
    • Winter Squash
    • Yarrow
    And that’s all folks!!!

    1. TOP;
      Your list of seeds is impressive. Now you just need to have weather that will cooperate. Not too wet, not too hot……
      This year my garden was a success. I have saved seed and ordered more for next year. But I am always at the mercy of Mother Nature.

      1. Moe,

        Your list of seeds is impressive. Now you just need to have weather that will cooperate. Not too wet, not too hot……

        True. That list of seeds is an inventory of an offering from woot.com. They didn’t list the seeds, other than 30+ heirloom varieties of herbs and vegetables for $30.00. I pretty much like everything except maybe the Jalapenos; but, the price was decent and will let me play with some things I haven’t normally planted.

        This year my garden was a success. I have saved seed and ordered more for next year. But I am always at the mercy of Mother Nature.

        Mother nature killed us this winter and spring with constant rain. We’re still hoping to get some garlic in the ground and are preparing to start seeds in the greenhouse. We may be running the tiller in the winter if that’s what it takes to get things done. We have a lot of packaged and saved seeds, including a seed vault package, so we are hopefull for next spring.

    2. Great list of seeds! We stockpile garden and medicinal seeds. I am still trying to get Holy Basil seeds. Anyone know where to find any or grow it?

  11. I came up with a new recipe: cajun chili. I made a large pot. (I used my water bath canner for the pot.) I started by browning the ground beef. I added cumin, paprika, cayenne pepper, oregano, basil, dehydrated onion and garlic. (This is my homemade chili powder.) I cooked that up in dumped in the big pot. Then I diced onion, bell pepper and celery, and cooked that up with andouille sausage. (I added more homemade chili powder. I like the homemade stuff because I like to add more cumin and cayene pepper.) Then I dumped that in the pot. Then I added half a dozen cans of rotel, diced tomatoes, chili beans in sauce, great northern beans and red beans. I added four jars of pasta sauce and a carton of beef broth. Then I added even more of the homemade chili powder. Yum! The key to this recipe is the andouille sausage.

    We ate hearty servings for dinner, put two quarts in the frig for dinner this week and ten quarts in the freezer. Yum. Now we have quick and healthy meals.

    I am getting low on gumbo. So I will have to make another big pot of that. I love having these dinners ready to go. I like being able to pull a soup out of the freezer, make a salad and viola dinner is ready.

  12. Question #1: I have 1500 sq ft three bedroom mobile home, being empty nesters the two small bed rooms are both used for food storage. I have a 16×24 detached building that was my son’s bedroom when I had three kids at home. It is not heated or cooled so no food items can be stored there and I have a 12×12 storage shed. It is half full of junk. Also a 24×32 garage full of tools and lawn mowers. With proper stacking 75% of the floor space could be utilized for something else.

    #2: My wife made me git rid of most of my junque, I have some plywood and lumber and 50 4×4 sheets of 1/2 inch Styrofoam insulation.

    #3: Normal stuff for Florida, a generator, extra food, flash lights, and I have a hand pump on my shallow well.

    My prepping was getting a tree cutting crew in to get all the low oak limbs in my yard and next to my home trimmed. I also had them cut up the two huge oaks I toppled in my side yard that my backhoe couldn’t move whole. If it ever stops raining I might my landscaping done.

    1. Daddio 7,

      I was going to suggest using that big surplus of Styrofoam to make an ice house – until I read that you live in Florida. My in-laws have a house in Venice that they spend the winter in and family and friends use for vacations year round, I love the Gulf Coast. Enjoyed the heck out of Daytona Beach during college spring breaks and St. Augustine on several family trips, unlike my brothers I always loved going to historical sites and attractions with Dad.

  13. We are constantly reorganizing storage. Fully utilizing the root cellar, under beds, garage cabinets, attics, etc.
    Junque is necessary for anyone who likes to build things. This years project is a wood gasifier. Acquiring necessary items now, although we have much.
    We are prepping for any long term disaster. Multiple solar systems, significantly sized generator, xtra propane, lots of fire wood, stored food, including freeze dried coffee, weapons and ammo, duplicate water supply – without our catchment.

    Preps this week – cleared all the tall grass and surplus bushes around the cabin. Also acquired a better propane torch and increased our supply of MAPP gas.

      1. Hi Tara. Still in planning stage. My two big items this year have been construction of a forge and enlarging the capacity of our main solar system. I don’t operate very fast any more. I am 78 years old and had a double lung transplant last October. Consequently, I have tons of medical appointments, more now since I am coming up on the anniversary. The year mark is a milestone. Most rejection occurs during the first year. The statistics aren’t wonderful, although the doctors and procedures are improving. I am so blessed to have been approved and have had such great results. Overall since they started to do these, 50% of those considered are approved. 50% of those done survive one year or more. Those stats include all transplants since they began and are not applicable to present operations.

        There are some excellent tutorials on the internet.

      2. Tara,

        Please share with us your progress on the wood gassifier. My husband has making one on his to do list as well!

        I built one of those about 25 years ago as an experiment using some steel drums / barrels. Getting the fire under the barrel set to the correct level is the hardest part; but, the wood gas is useable although perhaps a little acidic and hard on the little Briggs & Stratton engine I was using; however, some additional treatment usually with a water bubbler and drying section can make it less damaging to the engine. If you have the equipment to compress the gas, you can save it for later use; but, generally the gas is consumed as it is produced which is where the tricky part starts. The best fuel I found was seasoned hardwood chunks or cubes, which BTW end up being usable later as charcoal.
        If you’ve ever made charcloth for starting fires with flint & steel or a fire piston, and burned off the smoke / vapors, you were burning wood gas.
        Billy T, & I have communicated via email for some time and I was thrilled when he had his transplant. My late best friend Chuck from Athens had the same malady and didn’t survive long enough to get his transplant.

  14. Hi Pack,
    I am late to the party again.
    . I had a slow start on the week, Just felt really bad for until wed. then stabilized.. Part of issues is crashing blood sugars. So have doubled down on the dit to get it stable once again and began the biter melon again for 3 month cycles.. (on 15 days off 15 days x 3) I planted 22 sweet potato slips just after Mother’s Day. Then 3 weeks later planted 9 more.for a total of 31. They are in a 4x 12 raised bed… some have peeked their head up and been gathered. I am awaiting for closer to frost date and watching the weather… will pull vine and taters just before frost is due. i tried sweet potato greens, small leaves…was not impressed.. but tried the alrger leaves as cooked greens and liked them . so when i clear the vines will collect the leaves for greens and cook like turnip greens til tender/ without seasoning, chop small with spatula,dehydrate store dry w/oxy absorber… for me to have thru winter rehydrated and prepd with eggs. DH tried them, tho he is not permitted to eat over 3 servings a week of Vitamin K1 foods. he said they were acceptable, taste like sweet potato..
    I also saved the tips of the vines and have skinned them down to just a few leaves for cuttings… some people are able to save them for spring planting this way… will see if I can. i saw a video on you tube. have 17 starts so far. there are 4 in a jar that were really short. They have already put off nice looking roots. the ones in the potting soil are puting on new leaves.. I have no checked root system… think i will need to find a cooler spot for them than in the house.
    Replaced some of the long term meats we have used recently.
    Made bone broth and made up some chicken/veggie mixes to try over pasta…for entre’.. Had a 100% canning rate on this canner. set jars on top of stove and began cleaning them., before even touched rims… two popped open…will use these… have another set of bones in for more bone broth.

    I did try 2 new recipes out this week…all from scratch/storage. They were edible, but did not seem to be exactly what I was trying for.
    Working on gathering materials for garden imporvements and compost / soil building. hauled another load of sawdust, hand loaded and unloaded…and two partial loads of pallets and 2nd load of cardboard boxes.. Have began cleaning out drainage ditch,, will be deepening and preparing for closed drainage… so can mow /plant over that area without crossing a bridge…
    Building outside storage is on our list of must do projects.. The things I am gathering are with this end in mind. This coming month we will be buying screws and nails for the nail gun…moving concrete blocks for foundations…. We also have other projects in the works. Since heart surgery last year DH has not regained his strength…So many of the difficult things fall on me to initiate … and he assists where and when he can…
    Most of my preps are for lights out, grid down…events. we have these for some days every few years. One of our no electricity events we had no power for 15 days…another it was 9. ..both were ice storms. We have some preps for tornado in place, and alternate location to go…if severe storm warnings.
    The last of these, an Ice storm, I was caught at work and had to be there for 8 straight days. No one could not get in to relieve, for several days…and people had to have care. Even then I kept at least one change of clohes in the car and a blanket. The first day someone was able to go out and get a few things for us…on 3rd day a couple of supervisors made it in to work… Day 8 i was leaving to go home @8am and super said,” you know you are on schedule to be here a 3pm”. I looked her straight in the eye. Told her to “get one of the ones who had been off for 8 days to cover next 2 shifts”.
    Prayers for the sick, recovering and grieving..Prayers for our orig republic and The Prez. Prayers for courage for those in leadership, Prayers for the safety of troops, peace for them and their families. New puppies are growing.. one to go to DD soon. Border collie/Blue Heeler mix.
    Take care and keep on keeping on.

      1. Bam Bam,
        I was trying for high protein entre’ . something with quinoa because I do not have many recipes to use for it.
        .. I used Red Quinoa- about 1 cup cooked…, 3/4 lb cooked chicken breast diced., bone broth( to cook quinoa ), sweet peas( I used frozen- have few canned but not a fan of canned), a yellow onion, meat tenderizer(no msg brand).,2 tablespoons of butter( have ghee for LT). Can NOT use any Hot seasonings or Pepper, bell peppers, Cumin or Cheese.. bec. of dietary intolerances. Made 4 generous servings..guessed protein per [email protected] grams.depending on final serving size..I try for 5-6 oz, to eat over 45 min..Pretty close to what I require (x2.)
        I cooked the quinoa, to almost done added sweet peas, butter,onion/small diced,meat tenderizer/(digestive aid) after all that done added diced fully cooked chicken,and heated thru.
        DH. added hot sauce, to his serving….( I can not use) I ended up adding a little terraiki..to my serving. I thought bell pepper would help but don’t keep bec he can’t eat at all. ideas? … alternate meat? Canned pork?( have both commercial and home canned.)

        1. Sounds like a good mix but needs spices? Oregano and basil for Italian, cumin and a little chili powder for Mexican. Quinoa is a protein powerhouse but pretty bland on its own. I’m not even sure I’d add chicken to it, since it’s a complete protein on its own – maybe some chicken broth. Save the chicken meat for a soup or other entree. I have a good recipe for a quinoa salad with celery, peppers, cucumber, avocado and some lime juice. I realize these fresh items may not be available in a grid-down.

          1. Maine brain,
            I was trying to make something to fill specific needs. and our familys intolerances must be considered. They are not “do not like” but , ” intolerances =make illness/health conditions worse”.
            I must have 30-40 grams of protein in every meal.and no more than 10 grams of carbs. That is why I was using both quinoa and chicken. With both quinoa and chicken is possible get that much protein in my 5 oz serving limit. I Used Bone broth for mineral boost… it did help flavor. Still have 2 servings left to rework. may try each serving differently… If I mess it up too bad either dogs or chickens will eat it.

            NO hot, no cheese/few beans.. for me. NO CUMIN or bell pepper for him. Something in skin makes him sick. Being sick for 3 days after you eat any food is not pleasant so these are not options.
            Will try the oregano and Basil/ had not thought to go Italian..can not use Thyme…possibly little olive oil?
            May try with roasted green chili’s DH can eat those.He can eat spicy and keeps hot sauce to add, but can not be cooked IN it, I can not eat./stomach says no.
            Can not buy avacado’ here,.. in stores either green or rotten. Rural po-dunk hometown. .
            Celery and cucumbers CAN be dehydrated. Cukes need to be peeled, sliced uniformly. Have done both rehydrate well in recipes when very small dices or powdered..for salad would need to be powdered. and have celery chips/powder and celery seed on hand at all times.
            DH likes lime/lemon..(not my cuppa). have dehydrated some in the past. they must be stored in glass jars with good oxy absorbers and silica packs.

          2. Report on recipe re work…
            I added 2 teaspoons of coconutt oil to dry skillet. 8 oz chopped fire roasted red pepper, about 3 oz of sweet banana pepper/roasted./chopped healthy teaspoon of garlic powder, about 2 good pinches of basil, another teaspoon of onion powder and 1/2tsp. of celery seed. and a tablespoon of mushroom powder…after all was cooked thru and water cooked out, added old recipe to it and blended heated thru.. DH says he could eat this dish one time a month. ( This is how we rate recipes.. How many times a week or month, )He did add hot sauce and black pepper to his serving. served tonight with string beans seasoned with butter.

        2. AA,

          This recipe looks good and could be made in a grid down situation. You would have to stock mung bean seeds (which is a really good idea). (I also stock alfalfa seeds to make alfalfa sprouts–use only 2 Tbs of seeds.) You just put about 1/3 cup in a quart mason jar and fill with cool water. Let sit overnight. Drain and rinse in the morning. Drain and rinse for three or four days. Then you will have bean sprouts. Rehydrate veggies–peas, carrots, broccoli (whatever you have on hand). Then combine cooked quinoa, rehydrated veggies and add soy sauce. Scramble an egg for more protein.

          This actually sounds pretty good.

          https://www.pinterest.com/pin/79587118394782787/

    1. Anonamo Also,

      Building outside storage is on our list of must do projects.. The things I am gathering are with this end in mind.

      It’s the same here. We lost one of our buildings due to weather and age and still hope to replace it yet this year. We have tons of space in the barns; but, we have to keep fighting off the birds and raccoons from those buildings.

      Since heart surgery last year DH has not regained his strength…So many of the difficult things fall on me to initiate … and he assists where and when he can…

      When I had my heart surgery in 1998 it was 6-8 months until I felt good enough to do anything; but, within a year or so I was doing better than I had done in years. Is he doing any rehab, as in walking, or repetitive lifting of small weights, like dumbbells? I still do this and it helps immensely. Sometimes you just have to keep putting one foot in front of the other until one day it no longer seems difficult, although often those first few steps are tough. Not eating salads when on Warfarin (Coumadin) is a pain; but, hopefully they’ll be able to get the meds stable enough to occasionally have a salad. I’ve been off of all anticoagulants except aspirin since april and it’s wonderful.

      I did try 2 new recipes out this week…all from scratch/storage. They were edible, but did not seem to be exactly what I was trying for.

      I have a bunch of recipes here as pdfs, and a little searching found some of the better lists:
      This list is not all pdfs; but, can be printed or daved as pdf.
      9 PRINTABLE Food Storage Cookbooks PDF
      http://www.prepperssurvive.com/food-storage-cookbooks-pdf/
      10 Easy & Delicious Food Storage Meals
      http://www.ldsliving.com/10-Easy-Delicious-Food-Storage-Meals/s/75053
      Powdered Milk Recipes
      http://www.prepperssurvive.com/powdered-milk-recipes-printable/
      9 PRINTABLE Food Storage Cookbooks PDF
      http://www.prepperssurvive.com/food-storage-cookbooks-pdf/
      Hope these help. For me, any free resource can be useful at some point in time.

    2. Anonamo, I was just noodling some flavor combinations, assuming access to a fully stocked grocery store. It sounds like you and your DH have some significant food challenges. The last thing you’d want in a crisis situation is gastric distress from eating the wrong thing.* I’m an omnivore (okay, no blood sausage or pickled pig’s feet if I have a choice). DH is a meat-and-potatoes guy, though he will eat tuna salad. I imagine we’ll have a battle royal if quinoa is the protein source for the meal. “It’s what’s for dinner, eat it or go hungry,” say I.

      *I was in the Washington DC area last week at a conference and ate dinner at a high-end restaurant. The next day, I was out of the room about every ten minutes. It may have been what I had for lunch at the conference hotel, can’t say for sure. I had to literally tell my intestines to quiet down for the plane ride home.

      1. MaineBrain,

        I’m an omnivore (okay, no blood sausage or pickled pig’s feet if I have a choice). DH is a meat-and-potatoes guy, though he will eat tuna salad. I imagine we’ll have a battle royal if quinoa is the protein source for the meal. “It’s what’s for dinner, eat it or go hungry,” say I.

        I too am an omnivore including blood sausage, pickled pig’s feet, liver & onions, kidney, tongue, and heart. I won‘t mention the worst thing I’ve eaten; but, on a survival training course you sometimes have to take risks (and I was a teen). When we purchased our beef last year we got extra goodies since the others who had a share wanted no bones, or sweetbreads. The only thing I don’t / won’t eat, are the brains, since it can be a lottery and CJD is both fatal &incurable.
        I personally can’t tell the difference between quinoa and couscous, so with the right sauce, I can also eat that in a pinch.

        1. TOP,

          Many years in the military and trips to foreign countries taught me I can eat a lot of “weird” stuff if I have to. Hunger does funny things to your food preferences. Even going through boot camp got me eating things I wouldn’t when I was a kid. We would have eaten the chairs and tables if they’d let us. We never had enough to eat in boot camp, even though, in reality, they gave us decent servings, and my DIs gave us fair opportunity to eat it. Some DIs didn’t. No, we didn’t have jelly donuts available for the fat bodies to steal and bring back to the barracks. 🙂

          My dad would just about eat anything. Besides being a child of the Depression (where anything on four legs or with gills was fair game), in combat with the Japanese, they would eat captured Japanese rations or other foods for variety or because they were out of American rations. That is where he developed a taste for octopus and other Asian stuff. My Ex-wife is much the same from her childhood in Communist Cuba. Didn’t like tripe? You went hungry and there was more for everyone else.

      2. Maine Brain,
        That is why I am trying to work out some high protein meals now, while I have options and time to add additional choices for new recipes.I keep dehydrated veggies in a pretty good supply that I have dehdrated. Luckily most people around us do not like them., so More for us.!
        I will definitely add the fire roasted red peppers. They, the basil, celery seed/powder /garlic/onion powder made a world of difference in that recipe. I normally keep all of these ingredients .. I am low on the roasted pepper but by the first of the month I will have another stash.
        Gastritis is no fun, no matter when it occurs or what caused it. More frequently of late legumes is my offender. Have had to cut almost all beans. That put a crimp in the storage. Had not had a problem with quinoa…so will be trying out more recipes for it as an addition to a lower meat entre’. Trying to work around both our intolerances is definitely a challenge. Most recipes must be modified by leaving something out, or adding an alternate ingredient.

        1. Anonamo Also,

          That is why I am trying to work out some high protein meals now, while I have options and time to add additional choices for new recipes. I keep dehydrated veggies in a pretty good supply that I have dehdrated. Luckily most people around us do not like them., so More for us.!

          Dehydrated and freeze dried vegetables in a soup or stew can be made rather tasty. We’re still dehydrating; but, won’t start freeze drying again until it gets and stays cold, since that machine throws out a lot of heat, which in the winter actually helps heat the room it’s in, so running it sort of saves us a bit on the propane

          I will definitely add the fire roasted red peppers. They, the basil, celery seed/powder /garlic/onion powder made a world of difference in that recipe. I normally keep all of these ingredients .

          We’re not much into peppers; but, celery seed is something I’ve used in salads (like egg. Chicken, and tuna) since I was a kid and garlic powder can add flavor to almost anything of that sort. We keep onion powder and minced onion on hand for the same reasons. Not a lot of bulk or nutrition; but, they can make healthy bland things more palatable and fend off food fatigue.

          More frequently of late legumes is my offender. Have had to cut almost all beans. That put a crimp in the storage. Had not had a problem with quinoa…so will be trying out more recipes for it as an addition to a lower meat entre’.

          Meatless high protein without beans is a challenge and while we’ve tried quinoa it’s not our favorite except maybe as a recipe addition. Another addition brought up by this group perhaps a year ago, was Chia. I had always thought of these as the seeds one used for the Chia pets and hadn’t thought of them as food. As it turns out they are rather nutritious and available at our local Aldi’s.
          Chia seeds are a concentrated food containing healthy omega-3 fatty acids, carbohydrates, protein, fiber, antioxidants, and calcium. One ounce (about 2 tablespoons) contains:
          139 calories
          4 grams protein
          9 grams fat
          12 grams carbohydrate
          11 grams fiber
          plus vitamins and minerals.

          That same amount sprouted contains:
          137 calories.
          12.3 grams carbohydrates.
          4.4 grams protein.
          8.6 grams fat.
          10.6 grams fiber.
          0.6 milligram manganese
          265 milligrams phosphorus
          177 milligrams calcium

          Trying to work around both our intolerances is definitely a challenge. Most recipes must be modified by leaving something out, or adding an alternate ingredient.

          The DW is Lactose intolerant and really can’t handle hot (spicy) foods; but, we are otherwise thankfully in rather good shape.

          1. TOP,
            I have some chia, but they set unopened…thought they might could be ground to add protein…
            I am lactose intolerant to the extreme( borders on milk allergy- only lactose free milk in limited amount,..no sour cream ,cottage cheese, cheese, not even sharpest of cheddars,..nothing with whey, or by products of milk….unless I want to smell like the feed lot…and be very miserable for 3 days. ( I Had a twisted intestine 2 times and do not want a repeat- especially in grid down). I have a lot of enzyme deficienies, little tolerance for spicy..no hot sauce, no black pepper, no cayenne, can tolerate white pepper… very mild salsa only.
            The problem with peppers is common in certain blood types, enzyme in the peeling causes acute gastric distress. It is mitigated via roasting, so can use the roasted peppers and they have really good flavor… No commercial nor most individuals routinely roast peppers when adding them for seasoning, so unless we make from scratch …which we do, must avoid.
            Cumin is added to a lot of recipes, when we make those we leave it out.Nothing is worth the distress it causes. DH’s first wife was of Hispanic origins and her DGM did NOT use cumin. it may have been a regional thing…I know some do, but all don’t.
            We know if a can says “Mexican” or “Texican” or “southwestern recipe” we must scour the ingred list for cumin… those sensitive can smell it when can is opened.
            These diet challenges are just an irritation now, but should we become dependent on preps and need to feed others, NO one we have had close contact with, will eat what we eat regularly…NOW.. Finally told some of them a few weeks ago. “When things get dicey, if you do not want rice and beans, better get some extra cans socked away.”

      3. I will and can eat the pigs feet, chitlins, lites, heart, liver, kidney, tongue , tail,souse meat – and can make souse.. Don’t prefer the OINK, lol…Coon,squirrell, rabbit…. venison requires beef stew seasoning for best digestion… would try many other things… not a matter of being picky eater. My capacity is extremely small, so all proteins must be dense to get prescribed diet in… can cut the amount some, and have @ times, but energy and blood sugar issues arise.

  15. Bam Bam,

    I know there is a new article on making elderberry syrup, but I prefer your recipe. I seem to have misplaced it and I’m ready to make a new (bigger) batch. If you could post it here, that will be fine. But if you prefer to email it, contact TOP for my email address. I keep OPSEC as well as he does.

    Thanks.

    1. Zulu,

      I make elderberry tincture in half gallon mason jars. I get a pound of dried elderberries and evenly divide the entire bag in three half gallon jars. Then I top with 100 proof vodka. Let sit in a dark area of the kitchen for two weeks. Shake every day (or as you remember).

      I put the finished product in pint jars and give as gifts to family for Christmas.

        1. I put the elderberries in 2 1/2 cups water and simmer on the stove for about 10 minutes. You can add licorice root, star anise and lemon peel. Strain the spent materials and keep the liquid. Add 1 cup of honey. Mix well. This has to be stored in the refrigerator. It will keep for a week.

  16. Here’s an interesting website — emergencykitcookoff -dot- org. They enlist chefs to come up with recipes using a standard 72-hour preparedness food kit. Lots of good recipes and suggestions.

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