It has been an awesome week of prepping here on our survival homesteading retreat, and I barely had to lift a finger. Bobby and I spent several hours mapping out our spring, summer, and fall improvement plans – and it was an incredibly productive blast!
As I have noted before during my weekly prepping updates, we have been talking about the placement of the new chicken coop, a greenhouse, and several other things. Yesterday we sat down at the table on an incredibly peaceful and quiet afternoon, and actually drew out how we wanted it all to look while discussing the pros and cons of each placement.
We rarely, and boy do I mean rarely, ever get a quiet day without anyone else here but us and our puppies, with no other pressing chores, to thoroughly get through that type of large planning – especially all in a single setting.
I grabbed a large piece of paper that is about the same dimensions as the poster board I had used as a playdoh craft mat with the kiddos (because it was glossy on one side), and drew out four distinct sections to match the layout of out land, and then separated it into quadrants.
I was armed with both a black and a red permanent markers. Everything on the drawing you will see in the picture below that is in black ink reflects existing structures, growing areas, trails, and the like.
Everything in red in shows new structures, growing areas, etc. We drew in the temporary access road the gas company paid us to use for two months next year with red dashes, since it will not be permanent.
I am sure you cannot figure out all of the initials and their meaning on our makeshift map, but they do make sense to us. Here is a list of what we are going to be working on, cultivating, and building for the next year – kind of a prepper’s New Year’s resolution list in living color, I guess.
1. Build garage by wood shed with a second story office, so Bobby can close and sell his office in town. Existing attached garage is becoming a living room and extra SHTF sleeping space.
2. Build a parts shed off of the new garage for vehicle replacement parts etc.
3. Create new chicken coop with a massive run on the back side of the pole barn.
4. Brush hog “Oh S**t” trail to increase grazing space for the livestock.
5. Build a cow shed along the same trail for the new small herd of cattle.
6. Grub the rock formation area and the sides of “Up Top” hill road to increase livestock grazing space, also.
7. Relocate the fruit grove to where the old “kill corral” used to be. The fruit grove is too close to where the gas line work will be going on for us to be comfortable with its location and now that the corral is down, it is the better overall location.
8. Build a reloading shed where Brea’s cabin so will no longer be, because she is finally getting her dream home and putting it elsewhere on the property.
9. Move a camper to the rock formation area by the ravine as a lookout and for use as a hunting lodge
10. Expand the large ground growing plot into the smallest partial hay field to grow more sweet corn, field corn, wheat, and sorghum.
11. Grow rice in a marshy area we have been cultivating.
12. Build a six stall farm implement shed where the chicken coop will no longer be located.
13. Use one part of the “Y” dirt road from house to barn to garden smarter not harder in containers, raised beds on stilts, barrel, and vertical gardening, and to put in the new greenhouse.
I am sure I left off a couple of small things, like cutting in a few new trails, but that is the gist of our prepping improvements list for the year.
Now, on to this week’s questions:
1. What are your prepping “resolutions” for this year?
2. Do you reload your own ammo or would you like to learn?
3. If you keep cattle on your survival retreat (or would like to) what breed(s) do you keep?
4. What did you do this week?