What I Did to Prep This Week

What I Did To Prep This Week – Week 41: Apr 21st – Apr 27th 2019

baby duckling in brooder

Hey Pack, I hope you are all having great spring weather and getting tons of gardening and other outdoor preps done too. Being spring, we have been busy with numerous livestock births, both on our own survival retreat, and helping out members of our tribe.

I hatched ducks for the very first time this year. Duck eggs are notoriously difficult to hatch when compared with chicken eggs, at least. They are typically far more sensitive to humidity changes and really need to be turned in a different motion than chicken eggs to increase your chances of a high hatching success rate.

Duck eggs, like chicken eggs, need turned at least three times per day. Putting chicken eggs in an incubator with an automatic turner rocks them back and forth as they are situated straight up, as if they were in an egg carton.

For the best chance of good results, duck eggs should be placed in an incubator like the one shown below so they can roll back and forth sideways. Chick eggs don’t mind the sideways turning at all, and can usually be incubated inside either type of automatic turner.

baby duckling hatching

We keep Pekin ducks. I do love them so. Don’t get me wrong, they will be eaten if the SHTF, but, for now, my meat and egg ducks are used solely for their eggs.

The only problem with the Pekin breed is their unwillingness to sit eggs. To put it simply, the little yellow mommas have no work ethic. They get bored with sitting and wander off to do something else, and then maybe a day or two later decide to give sitting their eggs another try. Rinse and repeat. So, natural hatching of our duck eggs has been an epic failure.

I slid some duck eggs beneath a wonderful Banty hen momma once, but the difference in the eggs left her lopsided and she really did not like that.

I placed 12 duck eggs in the large incubator with the less optimal type of automatic turner because I was out of space in the small one and figured what the heck, give it a shot. In 13 more days I will know if anymore cute little ducklings will be joining our flock.

Other preps this week involved the foraging, harvesting, and storing of wild edibles found on our survival retreat. Our four and half and three year old grandchildren were able to pick their own wild salad with only minimal assistance – I am so proud of their emerging self-reliance skills.

I also used some barnwood that to make trail signs not just for orienteering self-reliance training with our young tribe members, but also to make it far easier for anyone to let us know exactly where they are. Several trails already had names, like “Oh S**t!) trail and Mad Dog Drop, but most did not.

The curse word named trail was dubbed by me because that is what I yelled more than once when my beloved and I were creating it. It was FULL of briar bushes, ruts, thick grapevine that would smack you in the head or side through the roll cage on the side-by-side and was incredibly steep. I believe my cursing was entirely warranted, but my mother might disagree.

Radio training was also a priority this week. We practice not only usage and the channel switching routine, but the easy-to-recall code that I created after adapting a prepper code sheet we happened across online about five years ago now.

There is a no-tech communications plan on our survival retreat as well that involves using a combination of knife markings on trees and color signs created using either bandanas or little cans of spray paint that are part of everyone’s gear and cached around the property.

This Week’s Questions:

  1. What experiences have you had with incubating poultry birds? Please share your tips and what you have learned from failed hatched with various birds.
  2. What one self-reliance skill do you think children should be taught from an early age and why?
  3. What communications plan and supplies will you and tribe or loved ones use during a disaster?
  4. What did y’all do to prep this week?

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 →

138 thoughts on “What I Did To Prep This Week – Week 41: Apr 21st – Apr 27th 2019

  1. Our church put on our annual Easter Service/breakfast/family photo shoot at our Civic Center. 5 hours but well worth it.

    Sold off some ammo that is now excess to my needs (I no longer have firearms in these calibers).

    Received: 100 proof vodka for tinctures, 2 sets of handgun grips, 4 sets of AR15 springs/pins, 2-gallon Gamma Lids, AF #10 Cheese Blend

    1. This Week’s Questions:

      1. What experiences have you had with incubating poultry birds? Please share your tips and what you have learned from failed hatched with various birds. – NONE. Wish we had room for a couple of egg layers!

      2. What one self-reliance skill do you think children should be taught from an early age and why? How to handle disappointment. As I look at our 15-25 yr olds, they seem to have no clue how to process their emotions when things don’t go as they think they should.

      3. What communications plan and supplies will you and tribe or loved ones use during a disaster? We are still working on our communications plan. Right now it’s just the DW and myself. We have the equipment we want, but need to use it.

      1. JP in MT,

        Re #2: I agree with this as an early skill that should be taught. So many kids these days just freak if the world doesn’t mold itself to their desires. I’d hate to see how they would survive in a place like Marine boot camp where NOTHING you do for the first three or four weeks is done right as far as the drill instructors are concerned.

        1. We had an Easter egg hunt at the school where I work. I was criticized for not making the kids all divide the eggs equally after the hunt. I let them keep what they found. The only ones who complained and whined about it were the other teachers. The kids were fine, even the ones who only found a few eggs. (I told the biggest complaining teacher that I didn’t have a socialist classroom. We were capitalists in my room. You get what you work for. She wasn’t amused.)

          1. PG:

            Good for you!

            I have had someone get offended overhearing something I was saying to a handicapped person once. The person I was talking to was not offended, thanking me for my comment. The person who was not part of the conversation decided to be offended for her.

          2. That’s the way it was when I was in grade school, I was the one with no eggs. Two kids can work just as hard but if one is in front and vacuuming up all the eggs it looks like the second kid didn’t even try. My life turned out mostly just like that, lots of work but little to show for it.

          3. Daddio7,

            Our egg hunt wasn’t like good Friday at Wal-Mart. I discussed good manners before we began, and every student had some eggs.

          4. PG,

            I went with #1 daughter, her hubby, and granddaughter to an Easter Egg Hunt last weekend. Granddaughter made out like a bandit. Her mom and dad did not help her. She was very polite and did not try to snatch eggs away from other kids. In fact, she gave a little baby some of her eggs as the baby’s mom was carrying her and having trouble picking up eggs at the same time. We were very proud of her.

          5. Socialist thinking has gotten so bad that starting next term I am going to have my students read Harrison Bergeron by Kurt Vonnegut. This is the best short story I have ever read–a dystopian story about the government enforcing radical equality by forcing smart people to take pills that will dumb them down.

            http://www.tnellen.com/cybereng/harrison.html

          6. Prepared Grammy,

            We had an Easter egg hunt at the school where I work. I was criticized for not making the kids all divide the eggs equally after the hunt. I let them keep what they found. The only ones who complained and whined about it were the other teachers. The kids were fine, even the ones who only found a few eggs.

            When my DD was young, like 7-11 years old, she played T-Ball where no one kept score; but, if you asked ANY kids that were playing, they all knew who was winning and who was losing, and even the losers (err. non winners?) didn’t care, since most were just having fun with school mates.
            BTW, I liked your response to your colleagues.

          7. I hate that type of attitude in teacher, I had a few like that who were not amused with me when I stuck up for my kid’s. I also had principals, who were like this too you have to stand your ground with ” Adults” they are the people, messing up these kid’s…

          8. mom of three,
            We were also the ”mean” parents who demanded our daughter be treated fairly. She was a wicked smart gifted child who would despite the ”No child left behind” plans, would often be “left behind”, since the smart kids should be able to fend for themselves.
            We often call the millennial generation ”Snowflakes”; but, it is this kind of social justice means no competition or being afraid of offending someone that creates those little flakes.
            I think too many teachers are comfortable in their unions and don’t really have to compete in the “dog eat dog” world where most of these kids will end up, wondering why the world is too mean to them.
            My DD entered quite a few competitions and often did well; but, we taught her that those who did not win are not always really the losers.

        2. Zulu 3-6,

          So many kids these days just freak if the world doesn’t mold itself to their desires.

          You mean like their internet isn’t working or is working too slow?
          Our DD received an allowance from the time she was about5 years old, consisting of $1.00 per week per her age in years, so at age 5, she received $5.00 per week; but, could only spend 10% on junk like candy, with the rest going into long term savings in an old peanut butter jar. When she wanted something big, it was purchased from the jar or she had to save for it if there was not enough. We dutifully counted the money in the jar every week to see what she had and how much more (how many weeks) were needed. This gave her both a math lesson and taught her patience. As she got older we could front her the money for an item and she would pay off the amount by forgoing most or all of her weekly allowance, again putting it into the jar and counting until we had enough to pay off her bill.
          She has been out of college now for nearly 4 years and seems to be managing her money and expectations quite well.

          1. TOP,

            My daughters have done quite well managing their lives and finances. In fact, #2 daughter just closed on her very first house Friday. I wish I could post a photo. #2 and her boyfriend were sitting on their new front porch with #2 holding a 10lb ABC fire extinguisher like a baby that #1 gave her as a housewarming gift. Pretty funny I think.

            Sadly, my son is not at all like his sisters. My Ex is worred sick about him and expects me to work a miracle to change his thinking and behavior. I’ve tried, but my name is not Jesus Christ.

          2. Zulu 3-6,

            My daughters have done quite well managing their lives and finances. In fact, #2 daughter just closed on her very first house Friday. I wish I could post a photo.

            I purchase my first house @ age 25 and both of my sisters have purchased one or more houses. My late brother lived in the old house where I was raised, a duplex; but, he was also around as a caregiver for my mother, so it all worked out OK.

            #2 and her boyfriend were sitting on their new front porch with #2 holding a 10lb ABC fire extinguisher like a baby that #1 gave her as a housewarming gift. Pretty funny I think.

            It is funny; but, something that will be appreciated. We’ve purchased fire extinguishers and both smoke and C.O. detectors for housewarming and wedding gifts in the past. Amid the toasters, dinnerware, and other household items, we do get an odd response; but, later, we’ve always been thanked by the recipients, who often hat not thought of such things being as essential as that third toaster with the gift receipt.

            Sadly, my son is not at all like his sisters. My Ex is worred sick about him and expects me to work a miracle to change his thinking and behavior. I’ve tried, but my name is not Jesus Christ.

            Even JC can’t change everyone, since you first have to recognize you need to change, and then help with that change. Hopefully some nonfatal issue will wake him up some day.

          3. TOP,

            #2 daughter also texted a photo of their first Amazon delivery to their new house. A box full of smoke and CO detectors. She isn’t taking very many risks with her new place, trying to keep dangers to a minimum. Smart kid. 🙂

            Also, about the prices of gasoline in the 1970s. Those were controlled by the government under Jimmy Carter. Another Lib who has no idea how a free economy works. Those prices were fixed well under what the market would have set and thus, the long lines at gas stations were a result of refiners reducing supply until prices came up. They couldn’t afford to refine oil at the prices they were getting. Yes, our “friends” in the Middle East jacked up crude oil prices, hence the need for refiners to increase their prices, but Carter wouldn’t allow it. When price controls were lifted, presto-chango, lots of gas was available and long lines ended. Unfettered supply and demand in action.

          4. Zulu 3-6,

            #2 daughter also texted a photo of their first Amazon delivery to their new house. A box full of smoke and CO detectors. She isn’t taking very many risks with her new place, trying to keep dangers to a minimum. Smart kid.

            Smart kid indeed; but, smart doesn’t always get it, so I assume she was also taught well, probably by demonstration from her parents.

            Also, about the prices of gasoline in the 1970s. Those were controlled by the government under Jimmy Carter. Another Lib who has no idea how a free economy works. Those prices were fixed well under what the market would have set and thus, the long lines at gas stations were a result of refiners reducing supply until prices came up. They couldn’t afford to refine oil at the prices they were getting.

            You are correct; but, here we had an advantage of sorts. Marathon oil refining HQ was only 30 miles up the road from where I lived (Findlay) and Standard oil had a refinery only 35 miles from here (Lima), so we saw both low prices and no lines. Looking back I didn’t realize how lucky my location was.
            Being a rather small town (pop 3500) also probably helped with no lines.

            Yes, our “friends” in the Middle East jacked up crude oil prices, hence the need for refiners to increase their prices, but Carter wouldn’t allow it. When price controls were lifted, presto-chango, lots of gas was available and long lines ended. Unfettered supply and demand in action.

            Carter was just following the lead of all of his ilk, with the origins of our health care problems being the wage & price controls of WW II where Henry J. Kaiser, figured a way around them and still made a profit.

          5. TOP,

            I was a young Marine at the time of the 1970s gas price mess. I really didn’t understand what was going on, but an officer I worked for had a degree in economics and he explained what was going on. It made sense then, and all of my education and experience since has only reinforced that officer’s teaching.

            Price controls lead to product shortages. Current example: Venezuela.

          6. Zulu 3-6,
            Price controls lead to product shortages. Current example: Venezuela.

            My late brother had degrees in economics, histpry, and poly sci and we had similar discussions.
            My mention of our employer based health care system, comes from those same controls during WW II.
            Henry J. Kaiser built Liberty ships, and with both wage & price controls in place, figured out how to legally get around them and still make a profit.
            He had a technique that could build ships fast & profitable; but, needed lots of labor to do so. Since labor paid the same wage by law, no one would go out of their way to come to his ship yard, when others were closer, so he purchased an old house, hired some doctors and nurses, and offered health care for the workers and their families.
            To compete, other employers started offering health care.
            Kaiser’s legacy, ”Kaiser Permanente” is an integrated managed care consortium based in Oakland, California, founded in 1945 by industrialist Henry J. Kaiser and physician Sidney Garfield according to Wikipedia.
            We of course now have a much better system with PPACA, LOL.

      2. Thor’s questions:

        1. Do you or have you felt like you’re a prepper hoarder? Nope! My house has never been neat. All the “stuff” I have has a purpose and it is labled/inventoried and tracked.

        2. What is the weakest part of your prepping ? Water, food, defense, medical, physical fitness…ect. ? Comms then PT.

        3. What is the worst situation that you are prepping for? Economic reset. Not a collapse as most people think of it, just a massive restructing of our public debt. I feel that this is the most likely thing to have happen as we cannot continue with this debt load; both publically and personally. And the “middle class” will be the ones hurt the worst.

      3. unless you live in an apartment or in a town with restrictions then you always have room. bantam chickens were popular on ships, a lot of ships in the golden age of sail had coops on deck and they kept bantams in them for the eggs. bantams are small, a lot of mine are the size of crows, they are all black so sometimes i think they are just crows pretending to be chickens to get free food. anyway they eat less than 1/3 the feed regular chickens eat, have eggs half the regular size but they lay a lot of them (and go broody a lot). you can keep half a dozen bantams in a 6×6 coop without a run (good solid wooden building with strong metal wire over the windows). they won’t make much droppings (i have about 25 in a 10×10 coop and only let them in the run on good weather days, all winter they are cooped up and the floor is never too shitty, unlike the 12 buffs i have in a similar coop who would make a pile 6 inches deep by spring).

  2. I did my low-carb grocery shopping this week. Added a little to my stash.

    Re-did my BOB. I actually had two and I eliminated one and reduced the load in the primary. All of the extra junk went into my new general preps tubs or into the medical tubs. Now I need to get cracking on finishing the medical tub reorganization and inventory.

    Part of the problem I am having is my back is acting up again. I stopped taking the statin and started on the CoQ10 supplement as directed. No real improvement yet. Granted, its not quite as bad as it was the last time I was on statins, but enough to be an impediment to working for any real length of time. Vitamin M helps a little (military speak for Motrin).

    Got all of my rechargeable batteries and radio batteries topped off. Bought a battery tester too.
    Granddaughter is such a joy in my life. She is so well behaved; except she likes to steal the forceps I have to use as small tools out of my desk drawer. She doesn’t do anything with them. Just puts them on the living room coffee table and ignores them. Whatever blows her kilt up, I guess. She has a tricycle now that her mom got off of e-Bay. It’s all in University of Michigan colors and decals. Go Blue! Baby knows what she needs to do with it, but she also needs about one more inch and to build up her strength and coordination a bit more to get decent play out of it. The lady who was selling it refused to take any money for it when she learned #1 daughter had gone to UMich and was in the military too.

    Tara’s Questions:

    #1 – Poultry bird experience? None at all except eating them. Speaking of which, I have six chicken breasts to bake today.

    #2 – An early self-reliance skill for children? I think the ability to think through and research problems to seek their own answers.

    #3 – What commo plan do I have? Well, I don’t really have a tribe, but I am a ham radio operator and have handheld radios and J-pole antennas I can hang up for somewhat longer ranges. I also have the cheapo 2-way radios that are OK for very close-range work. I’ve given a matching pair to #1 daughter in case we need to communicate when nearby. I have an extra pair in case I want to share with someone else. I do have a code that can be used on the cheapo radios to change frequencies without naming the channel. It’s a code my old Air Guard unit used on tactical radios. My Florida family does have a plan that we will use my sister who lives in the Chicago area as a prime point of contact in case we can’t verbally communicate locally but can communicate long distance. This happened in 2017 with Hurricane Irma for a couple of days, although texting still worked OK. My sister in the Detroit area is our backup.

      1. Daddio7,

        Yeah NSAIDs can screw up kidneys and liver, especially if taken too much. Some folks are just more sensitive than others. I’m not sensitive to NSAIDs, but I still keep my use to a minimum. I try to titrate the dose. If 400mg does the job, that’s all I’ll take. Sometimes, the back pain is just too much to ignore, especially when trying to sleep. Given a choice between NSAIDS and opioids, I’ll take Vitamin M every time.

        1. Zulu 3-6,

          I’m not sensitive to NSAIDs, but I still keep my use to a minimum. I try to titrate the dose. If 400mg does the job, that’s all I’ll take. Sometimes, the back pain is just too much to ignore, especially when trying to sleep. Given a choice between NSAIDS and opioids, I’ll take Vitamin M every time.

          When I was having some bleeding problems on the anticoagulants (mostly Warfarin) I was put on acetaminophen followed by Oxycodone, which was essentially home brew Percocet. I always started with a gram of acetaminophen, and if the pain persisted after 1-1.5 hours would add a 5 mg Oxycodone that always did the trick. Over the last 7 years I’ve taken a few dozen of those and have not had any cravings; but, I have a high pain tolerance and only take them in the worst case. Today was ”National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day”; but, the small supply I have will be kept, since several docs have told me they don’t expire, and getting a new script if I need one, has really gotten hard.
          They are of course in their original bottles and tucked away where you can’t just stumble on them.

          1. TOP,

            Oxycontin is pretty nasty if you take it all of the time. A dose here and there doesn’t really affect you as far as addiction is concerned. I have a friend who was severely wounded in Vietnam and is terribly hooked on opioids. He can’t get enough from the VA and suffers almost non-stop withdrawals as well as pain. He drinks scotch to kill the edge of withdrawals, so needless to say, he’s an alcoholic too. It’s a shame as he got a Navy Cross for the action he was wounded in (and probably should have gotten the Medal of Honor).

          2. Zulu 3-6,

            Oxycontin is pretty nasty if you take it all of the time. A dose here and there doesn’t really affect you as far as addiction is concerned.

            I an very careful with any medications and right now the only one I am fastidious with is my daily aspirin, since that’s the anticoagulant required for my aFib.
            25 years ago I was for some unknown reason suffering panic attacks and was given a script for Alprazolam (Xanax). That stuff worked so well that it scared me; but, in the end taught me to cope using relaxation and breathing, knowing that relief was in my pocket. I’m somewhat of a control freak in that I want control of ”me” and for that reason have never indulged hevily in any mind or body altering substances. I’ll have the occasional beer or mixed drink; but, mostly it’s just dull & boring things like ice water, milk, Gatorade and the occasional cup of tea.

            He drinks scotch to kill the edge of withdrawals, so needless to say, he’s an alcoholic too. It’s a shame as he got a Navy Cross for the action he was wounded in (and probably should have gotten the Medal of Honor).

            This is truly a shame and the reason we have ”Homes for Heroes”, ”Wounded Warriors” and other organizations to help, where the government seems to have abandoned those who served.
            Perhaps if there were more voting veterans than those on the dole, this would change.
            We perhaps also need to redefine service, since people like Schumer & Pelosi seem convinced that they are also public servants, which I find more than debatable.

      2. Daddio7,

        My doctor took me off NSAIDs, my kidney function is low and they interfere with that.

        Good old vitamin I or ibuprofen we get generic @ Wal-Mart. I can now take it sparingly; but, when I was taking anticoagulants for my aFib, they can cause a GI bleed and could not be used. Now I’m only on an aspirin a day and they can be used with some care.

    1. Zulu 3-6,

      Part of the problem I am having is my back is acting up again. I stopped taking the statin and started on the CoQ10 supplement as directed. No real improvement yet. Granted, its not quite as bad as it was the last time I was on statins, but enough to be an impediment to working for any real length of time. Vitamin M helps a little (military speak for Motrin)

      I’ve been on statins, COQ10 and Krill oil for decades and have never had a provlem; but, had a good friend who did, so I feel for you.

      Got all of my rechargeable batteries and radio batteries topped off. Bought a battery tester too.

      We are constantly recycling batteries through the chargers in a ssemingly never ending task.
      What tester did you get and how do you like it?

      my sister who lives in the Chicago area as a prime point of contact in case we can’t verbally communicate locally but can communicate long distance. This happened in 2017 with Hurricane Irma for a couple of days, although texting still worked OK.

      This is often a common problem when local circuits simply get overloaded. Back in 1977 when Johnstown PA (my home town) had its 3rd major flood in a century, locals like my sisters and parents could not call each other; but, I could call each of them and relay messages. This was before cell phones and texting and even before three way calling; but, having someone outside the local area should be part of any plan.

      1. TOP,

        The tester I got is the D-Fantix DT-168D from Amazon.

        I suspect that it is not terribly accurate and under reads the voltage. But, one gets what one pays for. It wasn’t very expensive.

          1. Zulu 3-6 & Almost There,
            I just looked at both of these testers & have some good news and some bad news.
            The one that Zulu has looks very much like an analog meter version I have that is just basically a voltmeter with an easy way to connect to the battery. These work well on older carbon zinc or alkaline batteries, since they start @ 1.5 VDC nominal and droop off to zero as they age; however, for NiMH or lithium cells they don’t work all that well, since these batteries will stay between 1.2-1.5 VDC until they are close to the end, at which point they drop precipitously to zero. Measuring the voltage when the battery is right at the edge of that cliff may show a good battery; but, then your light or radio fails within minutes of operation.

            I also wasn’t able to find much other information on that unit, except for a few videos of people who had no idea what they were talking about.

            OTOH, the link that Almost There posted looks like a winner. I found the manual and chased out the two patents and it does what a battery tester should do, by using a microprocessor to control a load and monitor the battery @ different load levels, catching that battery right at the edge of the cliff.

            In easier to understand terms, think of a vehicle battery where you turn the key and the inside lighting and radio work fine at which point the battery would probably measure around 12 VDC give or take; but, then you hit the starter, and the load pulls the battery voltage down, the lights dim, and the starter mmotor either grinds slowly or does nothing. Testing with varying loads are essential, and that tester has been added to my wish list on Amazon.

          2. TOP and AT,

            I added the tester suggested by AT to my Wish List too. Just reading the product description indicated to me that it was a better tester by far. Seeing as my electronics knowledge is only slightly better than my math abilities, I think I will accept TOP’s review as decisive.

          3. Zulu 3-6 & Almost There,

            TOP,
            Glad it meets your approval

            It does; but, just based on the specifications and the function.
            Once I found the two listed patents I was able to see exactly what it does.
            All too often the description on the sales page is rather weak, like stating that a gun holds and shoots bullets.
            I think you said your brother recommended it; but, in any case, it looks good enough to purchase next week.

  3. Finally we are having a typical dry Florida spring. After two years of almost continuous rain my yard is dry and I have been able to fill in the holes created by my major tree removal project. I had a good week and my projects are either almost finished or have a good start.

    The siding repairs on my home are done, all I have to do now is paint the replaced siding. My garden has an awesome start, having a small tractor and a rototiller worked wonders. After I got the 100×50 foot area my wife helped me put up the deer fence, at least until I ran out of poles. We got one end and the two side done so when the poles I ordered are delivered I can get the last part done.

    We got one third planted, okra, sweet corn, carrots, green onions, cantaloupes, watermelon, and almost 100 cluster tomato plants. A month age we bought some cluster tomatoes from the grocery store and one got soft before we could eat it so I mashed it up and planted the paste in two container pots. I think every seed sprouted. I was going to plant a few in the garden but my wife decided to plant them all. Guess who is going to be staking them and hoeing the weeds.

    I ran out of seeds so now I need to decide what else to plant and buy some more seeds. I will need to get my yard project finished soon because my brother will be wanting his equipment back. In November he will turn 66 and retire. Between work and church he gets little time off and is too tired to do anything if he does. He works for Northrop Grumman and they just got an order for 24 E-2D patrol aircraft. He is the only person doing cad plating and could work 7 days a week if he wanted to. We were best friends growing up and farmed together for 25 years. I am looking forward to hanging out with him again.

  4. Hi all,

    To our host’s questions:
    1- Zilch. Someday maybe.
    2- Navigation. It’s so fundamental, if you don’t
    get it, you’re screwed.
    3- Looking into radios. I’ll pick the brains of
    people who are experts.

    4- Just returned from Tennessee. Went as a family and visited my in laws. We had a New England clamboil right there in Tennessee. We brought the food down in two coolers, changing the ice in Virginia and taking two days to drive down. I had to teach them how to eat a steamer because they hadn’t ever had them. My wife gave us stuffed quahogs as an appetizer.
    Met a local doctor and was impressed with his character and genuine decency as a friend. Mrs. Overwatch finally got to visit the school I had checked out in December. She was impressed with the staff and the facility as I had been.
    Stopped by Ready Made Resources in Tellico Plains. Had a nice talk with them and picked up a few items (left Bob and staff a couple of stuffed quahogs too). They seemed busy with phone and internet orders but took time to talk with me about our eventual move. I ended up buying some Mountain House FD beef stroganoff on sale, some cosmoline spray, and several boxes of 9mm ball for my father in law.
    Good deals on all items.
    All in all, this was a good trip. It may have been too much for my little guy as evidenced by his giant smile when he woke up at home Easter morning. Next time I’ll head down alone and fill a van with antiques. Gotta make some dough.

    1. Overwatch,

      My dad was from P-town, and I grew up on seafood. My favorites are lobster, lobster rolls, and NE clam chowder.

      1. Are you Portuguese? Lol. Provincetown is an interesting place. A guy at a bank told me that town bylaws prohibit the window display of a rubber chicken. He told me that in full view of a window display of two leather-clad mannequins in bondage gear.

        When we move, I’ll have to sneak back periodically for lobstah and chowdah.

        1. Overwatch,

          As a matter of fact, I am 1/2. I could call myself a Portuguese-American, but they don’t have a category like that. Besides, I am an American, no matter my heritage… My dad’s parents came over from the Azure Islands, and landed there versus Ellis Island. They were fisherman of course. My dad was born on Standish Street. Been to a few fleet blessings, salt water taffy shop on the pier, Portuguese kale soup is one of my all time favorites. Yeah, Lobstah and chowdah…. I was born and raised in FL, so never was a Northerner. 🙂

          P-town has totally changed since we visited as kids. Not for the better either.

          1. We have Portuguese next door neighbors. Like family to us. Blessed to have them.

          2. Overwatch,

            We have Portuguese next door neighbors. Like family to us. Blessed to have them.

            Growing up in my western Pa neighborhood, we were just one piece of a large melting pot. My street was 3 short blocks long and had black & white, protestant, catholic, and orthodox Jewish, English, Irish, Polish, Italian and who knows what else. My dad worked at the USPS; but, most of the dads worked in the steel mills or mines and nearly all were WW II vets.
            We simply all got along and were a true community with many sharing garden produce with neighbors and looking out for those who had tough times or were ill or elderly.
            Sometimes I think back to that place and time, and wonder if it was really a dream, or more importantly, how we got where we are in today’s world.

  5. #1 Yes, I do have some poultry hatching experience. Several years ago, I bought one of those $100 incubators from the local feed store that included the egg rocker. We used it to hatch out North American Wood Duck eggs that we “stole” from the many duck boxes my DH had put up around our pond. They’re a much smaller duck than a Pekin, but we had good success with it. As far as chickens go, I much prefer to just give a broody hen a few eggs and let her set. Bantam hens seem to go broody a lot more often than my full-sized birds.

    #2 Teach children how to grow food. Start them young so they really get the bug…my twin grand daughters who are just 6 years old asked me for some seeds so they could grow their own vegetables. I gave them green beans, carrots, and lettuce seeds. I believe the green beans did the best for them….they even took pictures and posted it on Facebook.

    #3 Communication preps are a weak link for me. I do have some walkie talkies packed away somewhere (???) and a supply of rechargeable batteries with a charger.

    #4 Preps this week: Construction of our BOL cabin is going well. Roof should be dried in this week. Picked the first round of green beans from the garden on Thursday. Cut yet another stalk of bananas this morning. We had friends over for dinner yesterday and I used mostly home-grown food: deviled eggs, pureed sweet potatoes, green beans, and banana bread for dessert. DH made baby back ribs in the smoker, which was the only non-farm item on the menu.

    That’s it for me I think!

  6. 1. What experiences have you had with incubating poultry birds? Please share your tips and what you have learned from failed hatched with various birds.
    I’m doing this for the first time, and I can’t wait to read the responses.
    2. What one self-reliance skill do you think children should be taught from an early age and why?
    I can think of lots of skills, but I think it boils down to one thing. I believe a strong work ethic is the most important. With this, they will be able to tackle life.
    3. What communications plan and supplies will you and tribe or loved ones use during a disaster?
    We have some radios for communication, but mine haven’t been programmed yet. My son’s are up and running.
    4. What did y’all do to prep this week?

    This week:
    -One of my kindergartners, now age seventeen, was killed in a car accident. (I taught her brother for three years, and I know her family.) I went to her wake today. Folks, be ready. You never know when your time will come.

    -We celebrated Easter with the entire extended family at my house. It was a great time, with everyone contributing to the meal. Potluck really helps me.

    *Animals:
    -The kids are growing like crazy, and so are the chicks.

    *Garden:
    -I got my first retirement gift from a coworker who knows me well. She got me an apple tree!
    -Planted a lot of herbs.
    -I only managed to get one row of green beans in the ground before it started raining hard.
    -Garlic is looking good.
    -Planted flowers. I know it’s not a prep, but it makes me happy.

    *Added a little to the stockpile: canned Rotel, TP, protein bars, granola bars, granola, canned fruit, dehydrated fruit,

    *Miscellaneous:
    I finalized plans for my retirement!

    *Skills:
    – I’m learning to use the incubator to hatch chicks. I have four dozen eggs in the new incubator.

    Be prepared. Stay safe. He’s in charge.

    1. You will love retirement. I have been very content with my decision to do so. I was a little afraid to take the plunge initially, but a good decision for me. Hope it worked genually well for you!

      1. Jean,

        You will love retirement. I have been very content with my decision to do so. I was a little afraid to take the plunge initially, but a good decision for me.

        I’ve been retired now for just a bit over 2 years, and the one thing they don’t tell you about retirement is that you seemingly have less free time than when you were working. I have more projects with fewer getting done than ever. Of course since you are retired, more people will want your help, since you’re not working any more, right?
        One thing that I think helps is to plan your projects and learn to say no!!!!
        While we all still want to be helpful, save your time for people who are really in need, and make sure to take time for yourself, otherwise retirement can become just another (unpaid) job.
        For me at least, doing something that counts is a help, so the DW & I volunteer with our local county EMA. Groups like churches, Red Cross, and others can also help fill that need that often we don’t realize we have, since it may have been fulfilled at work without our knowing it.

        1. Very wise advice OP. I got myself a little over committed this past month and had to do a Barney Fife, and ‘Nip it in the bud.’

          It is a wonderful feeling for having worked 42 years to finely have time to do the projects I want to do w/o having to start one weekend,finish up the next weekend etc.

          I have also noticed that I can’t do all of what I want to do (over commitment), so I focus on doing a good job that brings me satisfaction before going to the next item. Still have to cut grass, pay bills and weed the garden however.

          1. Jean,

            Very wise advice OP. I got myself a little over committed this past month and had to do a Barney Fife, and ‘Nip it in the bud.’

            This advice comes from only about 2 years of my own experience; but, also from older friends who often complained about the same issues. I thought them perhaps a little crazy; but, then it happened to me. LOL.

            It is a wonderful feeling for having worked 42 years to finely have time to do the projects I want to do w/o having to start one weekend,finish up the next weekend etc.

            It was 43 years after college in my case with more in college and in high school; but, I do agree and will offer another caution. When we did those multi weekend projects, we would sometimes have friends or family help us out; but, since many of those are younger and still working, some projects may still need to be like they were, carried out over time if you need help from those younger folks. I’ll often think about calling a friend to get together for lunch or something, and then realize that they are at work.

            I have also noticed that I can’t do all of what I want to do (over commitment), so I focus on doing a good job that brings me satisfaction before going to the next item.

            The next item of course involves lists and I have mine planned out both time and money wise for years into the future. If I could convince mother nature, or god, or whomever, to let me live until I completed all of those tasks, I would be immortal. LOL
            I often tell people, tongue in cheek of course, that my schedule is I eat when I’m hungry and sleep when I’m tired and do work in between those things, and while that’s sort of true, having lists and some kind of order is also essential. I am a notorious night owl and since much of the TV I watch is captured on the DVR, I’ll often be watching a bit of TV, playing on the radio or working here on the computer and all of a sudden it’s 3:00 AM.
            It doesn’t bother me; but, if it would bother you, then you need to think about it now.

            Still have to cut grass, pay bills and weed the garden however.

            Yep, life continues on.

            One thing you may or may not be doing, is taking advantage of any and all senior discounts. At Wendy’s for example, the DW & I can each get an inexpensive sandwich with an order of fries to split and two >strong>free ”senior” drinks and eat lunch on the cheap. We don’t eat out often; but, these discounts can save some cash for other more important things and you should always ask about senior discounts.

            Also, here in Ohio they have a tax advantage called ”The Homestead Exemption” that you can apply for. In our case it cut our property taxes by nearly half. You should check for similar discounts in your jurisdiction.

    2. In the past six weeks we have buried two teens–one 17 and one 19. The 17-year-old died in a skydiving accident. He was one day away from his 18th birthday. The 19-year-old died of cancer. The former was our son-in-laws nephew. The latter was a young man that we “adopted”. He was brought up by ambulance from Miami which is six hours away. He had no family local. So we visited several times each week and prayed with him. Two years he was in the hospital.

      1. Bam Bam,

        He had no family local. So we visited several times each week and prayed with him. Two years he was in the hospital.

        As I age, perhaps the hardest thing in life is the passing of friends and loved ones, sometimes younger than I, and while it’s a hard thing, I hope you can take some solace in knowing that for that young man, your hospital visits probably made his last days easy, and more comfortable, with someone who cared at his side. Dieing alone has to be one of the worst things I can imagine

          1. BamBam,

            I am glad that Robert had you to pray with him and have someone sing to him. At the end, people loose their hearing last, and even though they can’t speak or move or show emotion, they can hear. The right music can be so comforting.

        1. TOP,

          More than once, both as a paramedic and police officer, I held the hand of someone who was dying as they passed. It’s the least one human can do for another I think.

          1. Prepared Grammy,

            Z36, I think it’s such an honor to hold someone’s hand as they pass away.

            I would agree. When my best friend (brother from another mother) passed in 2015, I was honored to be with my extended family at his bedside as they turned off the equipment. He was already brain dead. It was an odd feeling, to be both honored to have known him and be there at the end with the rest of his “real” family. It’s been more than 4 years now, and I’m still tearing up as I type this.
            Anytime we can help those in need, I think often helps us more tham them.

          1. Prepared Grammy & Bam Bam,
            In his book ”Illusions” Richard Bach said it as well as I’ve ever heard.
            “The bond that links your true family is not one of blood, but of respect and joy in each other’s life. Rarely do members of one family grow up under the same roof.”

  7. Puppy did something really funny……. He laid down in his dog bed…..above his dog bed is a carbon monoxide detector. He backed into it and FARTED !!! The alarm went off, first ime I ever heard it, he then took off looking over his shoulder…. LOL

    Food

    Bought 3 large growing pots. 2 for the avocado trees and one for a small palm tree.
    Bought dirt for containers
    Transplanted said trees.
    Planted green bunching onions and carrots. The garden is planted yay !!!

    Workout

    Worked out in the gym and am now down to 265
    I’m going to start wearing the BOB on the treadmill.

    Vehicle

    Bought taillight guards for the jeep.
    Bought spare tire cover to jeep.

    Tara’s questions
    1.What experiences have you had with incubating poultry birds? Please share your tips and what you have learned from failed hatched with various birds.
    2. What one self-reliance skill do you think children should be taught from an early age and why?
    3.What communications plan and supplies will you and tribe or loved ones use during a disaster?

    1. Beer can chicken……barbeque, fried…..LOL my GM raised chickens and my DM ‘s GSD got into the chickens and GF shot the dog.
    2. Self-defense/firearms. They have to be able to protect themselves and must learn respect of a firearm. Growing food would be #2.
    3. CB radios in Faraday cages and 4 FRS/GMRs. I have a CB base,mobile and 2 hand held CB’s

    Thor’s questions:

    1. Do you or have you felt like you’re a prepper hoarder?

    2. What is the weakest part of your prepping ? Water,food,defense, medical, physical fitness…ect. ?

    3. What is the worst situation that you are prepping for?

    Interesting article:

    https://www.activeresponsetraining.net/seven-things-you-dont-know-about-body-armor

    Interesting equipment:

    https://store.teamglock.com/accessories/entrenching-tool-w-pouch.html

    This is going in the jeep.

    1. Good questions, Thor1 ! (1) YES, I have often felt like a prepare hoarder. But, I am slowly culling out some of the junkier stuff I now don’t feel is so necessary. I’m getting past trying to prep for extended family! (2) The weakest part of my prepping is medical. I have typical stuff put back, OTC meds and some first aid stuff, but I’m not skilled at all to handle emergencies. UGH (3) I am prepping for total societal collapse. That is my biggest concern: having to make it with what we’ve got and the things we can do for ourselves for the long haul. Let’s face it, anything temporary like storms and such are short-term. Even personal SHTF events aren’t as scary once you’ve prepped for the ultimate potential meltdown of society. How long can you survive if you can’t leave your property? Very sobering thought…

      1. Goatlover, good question back. Hmmm how long can I survive without leaving home?

        With 1 year of stored food for 4, a water catchment and filtration systems, solar power, garden to supplement and forest creatures with in target range as well as trees to burn. 18 months….maximum maybe longer with variables.

    2. Thor1,

      Thor’s questions:

      1. Do you or have you felt like you’re a prepper hoarder? No, I don’t feel that way at all. I am somewhat limited in my storage facilities. If I didn’t have to pay my ex half of my police and military pensions, I’d be able to afford a bigger apartment with a bedroom dedicated solely to storage. Oh well, embrace the suck. 🙂

      2. What is the weakest part of your prepping ? Water,food,defense, medical, physical fitness…ect.? I would say my physical fitness is my weakest area. Not that I can do a lot about it thanks to old age and arthritis in back and knees (from playing grunt and cop too much). I’m pretty good in most other areas.

      3. What is the worst situation that you are prepping for? Short term: Hurricanes. Long term: Financial issues on a national level and the possibility of civil disorder.

      The article about body armor was spot on in my opinion. I wore enough of it in my time to know the author is right. Personally, I didn’t find the soft armor affecting my pistol shooting stance much, but the SWAT armor with strike plates did. Adjustable stocks for rifles takes care of the worst of the length of pull issues.

      Regarding the Glock e-tool. It seems like a nice piece of kit, but I own two USGI foldable e-tools that are adequate for my needs. Although I will readily admit that an e-tool with a straight handle makes an excellent melee weapon. Lots of Japanese soldiers met their end on the edge of an older model USGI e-tool in WWII according to my father. I’m sure lots of Germans, NORKS, Chinese, and NVA did too.

      I think Puppy needs to wear a HazMat sign. 🙂

      1. Z36, now you know why I have a gas mask…. LOL I got to stop feeding him eggs……but they build muscle and he is ripped for a puppy.

        Seems like most here are looking at a financial crash as the most likely disaster. Hmmm

        I would have to turn my back yard into a garden. Right now about 1/6th of the yard is a garden. Puppy wouldn’t like that cause he likes to play ball gun and Frisbee back there. I have a chicken wire fence around the garden now to keep him out.

        I have 2 foldable shovels but the Glock has a saw in the handle….nice.

        1. the puppy will get over it, more grden means more pests like woodchucks showing up, and i have met few dogs that didn’t like the taste of woodchuck

          used to give my blue heeler eggs, he flew better than the chickens since he was jet propelled. i would say half his diet was hardboiled eggs. i keep lots of chickens and have no refrigeration, farm eggs with bloom on them will last 3 months if at cellar temperatures (50s) and over a month at room temperature, would use the ones over 2 weeks old myself, sell or trade any under 2 weeks, and any over a month old got boiled and fed to dog or barn cats.

    3. 1. Do you or have you felt like you’re a prepper hoarder?
      Yes, there are times that I feel like a prepper hoarder. I sometimes look at my TP stash and wonder why I have so much. Then I calculate how long it will last, and I buy more.

      2. What is the weakest part of your prepping ? Water,food,defense, medical, physical fitness…ect. ?
      I think communication is my weakest category. I have equipment that I’ve never programmed.

      3. What is the worst situation that you are prepping for?
      I’m preparing for any situation that will cut me off from supplies. I want to be as self-sufficient as possible.

      1. i keep a few old phone books in the outhouse, they send out 2 a year and i only keep 1 on hand, plenty of times i ran out and i have gone months at a time with newspaper. still should probably stockpile it, but i suppose then that is the one weakness i have, if i have one

      2. PG,

        #3 – Exactly. That’s why I buy stuff I can’t produce like sheets, towels, blankets, merino wool sweaters, t-shirts. I have them all washed up and stored in totes.

      3. Prepared Grammy,

        I sometimes look at my TP stash and wonder why I have so much. Then I calculate how long it will last, and I buy more.

        I can find, hunt, forage, fish, or grow food, can produce potable water from numerous sources, and keep warm in the winter by several means; but, any alternative to TP is just a world I cannot contemplate. LOL.
        So we buy more too!!!!!
        TP may be a bit like being paranoid. It’s not if you are paranoid; but, are you paranoid enough?

    4. Thor1,
      First of all on your puppy. I used to work on a design team for smoke & carbon monoxide detectors, and the later will trigger on just about any flammable vapor. ‘nuff said.
      1. Do you or have you felt like you’re a prepper hoarder?
      Not really. Living in one place for 35 years means a bit more clutter than we would like; but, everything we keep, has a current or future purpose.
      2. What is the weakest part of your prepping ? Water,food,defense, medical, physical fitness…ect. ?</strong
      It would be physical fitness for sure. I have mild CHF and a pacemaker; but, like Harry Callahan I know my own limits and know how to work within them.
      3.
      What is the worst situation that you are prepping for?
      No threat in particular, since we could bug in here almost indefinitely. We have a lot of savings, which of course are just numbers in numerous accounts; but, I suspect if there is some shift in the economy, it would affect all of us, so paying things like R.E. taxes would be skipped without incident, and at least for while, we could produce everything we need, except this internet connection, that might make me go cold turkey and have to plan a detox. LOL

      The body armor article is informative; but, seems to leave open a few things.
      The MSM is always amazed when someone gets hurt when wearing their bulletproof” vest, and just don’t have a clue.
      Also, while soft armor may ”stop” the bullet, the energy has to go somewhere. We did a similar thing with older armor testing on the range. It stopped the bullet (as in no hole or penetration); but, the plywood backer was dented and splintered out the back side. I suspect your chest or ribs could likewise be bruised or damaged.

      1. TOP, Thor1, and others,

        Yes, if you get shot in an armor vest, you WILL have some amount of blunt force trauma to your body under the impact point(s). How much depends on the caliber and velocity at the time of impact on the armor, angle of impact, whether you are wearing a strike plate that was struck, and what you are wearing under the armor.

        A pistol round hitting a Level III or IV strike plate will probably not cause much, if any, blunt force trauma. But if it hits a Level IIIA vest, you can bet you will have at the least a very ugly bruise to show off to your friends. Broken ribs are also a possibility. But, you will be alive to show off your bruises as they change color. That is the important part.

        A number of soldiers and Marines in Iraq and Afghanistan have had their lives saved by their helmets when struck by AK rounds. Yes, it rings their bell and usually causes a concussion, but they’re alive to receive their helmet as a keepsake (that is kind of a tradition now in the military, the Brits do it too). The very first soldier saved by a Kevlar helmet was a paratrooper on Grenada. The helmets then weren’t designed to stop rifle bullets, but the angle was just right. That helmet was in the 82d Airborne museum at Fort Bragg. I’ve seen it. I don’t know if it’s still on display.

    5. Lordy, Thor, Puppy’s antics keep me in stitches! I think you could write a successful book all about him!

      Your questions:

      1)I willingly admit to be a hoarding prepper, but I think DH is worse. I subscribe to the mindset that you need a back up to your back up. But I regularly ‘purge’ unnecessary stuff. DH, I have to poke and prod to ‘clean things up’ and get rid of stuff. Its why the garage is such a mess, and the house is not so much.

      2)It’s easier for me to list what parts of my prepping are strongest, food and medical. As well, DH is a whiz with small engine repair. And those strengths are weak, compared to a lot of the rest of the Pack. BUT, those are ‘barterable’ skills to have. So while we strive to shore up our ‘weaknesses’, we know we have something to share that could be valuable in ‘trading’ situations if need be.

      3) I feel that by focusing our efforts on the most likely type events, weather or job loss (both of which we’ve lived thru several times), it puts us at a greater advantage than 99% of the general population no matter what ‘big one’ happens. That doesn’t mean we don’t have an eye on the longer term view. I agree with others, that the current economic situation is not sustainable. I worry about a lot of other things too, the 2020 election, the illegal immigration situation, ISIS, and so on. But I choose to focus on the things I CAN prepare for, knowing that what preps I make now will be helpful regardless of the ‘event’.

      1. Grammyprepper,

        I subscribe to the mindset that you need a back up to your back up. But I regularly ‘purge’ unnecessary stuff.

        This would be me in spades. LOL
        I have more flashlights than anyone needs; but, recently purchased two more in a nice case with rechargeable batteries and a charger.
        If nothing else they can make good gifts or trading material; but, I plan to NEVER be left in the dark, and out here at night, it gets dark!!!

        As well, DH is a whiz with small engine repair. And those strengths are weak, compared to a lot of the rest of the Pack.

        Comparing almost anything we do with this group will show our weaknesses; but, knowing those weaknesses is perhaps a strength we all need. As Harry Calahan said, “A man’s got to know his limitations.” at which point we can plan accordingly.

        I choose to focus on the things I CAN prepare for, knowing that what preps I make now will be helpful regardless of the ‘event’

        This is the thought process of the mature advanced prepper, and one we should all strive to emulate. There are just some unlikely scenarios for which there is no affordable or reasonable preparation, so we do the best we can, and let the worrying to someone else.

        1. I think you raise a very valid point, TOP. We all like to ‘brag’ about what we have and what we can ‘do’. It’s human nature. But in the ‘prepper world’, acknowledging your weaknesses is seen as a weakness, mostly. I think being able to acknowledge your ‘weaknesses’ makes you even better prepared. It is an acknowledgement, and enables one to know where they may need to put more focus in pursuing skills/knowledge/’stuff’. It also gives you an idea of who may or may not be a good fit for your tribe/group/MAG. For instance, if your ‘group’ has more tech savvy folks but few medically savvy, your priority would be finding the medically savvy. For what we lack in, we have much to offer, not to mention the leadership strengths I personally have and DH is finding in himself with encouragement. I openly admit that I have weaknesses. To do otherwise would be like dnying I am human. I can be cocky when I need to, but I am willing to ask for help when I need it (grudgingly, I admit). But those folks who say ‘I can do it all I don’t need your help, I’ll survive in the woods on my own’, I just feel sorry for them. I hate that saying ‘it takes a village’ but I don’t see the ‘loner’ lasting for long. (nemoseto, you are an exception to that, and I am sure there are others)

          1. Grammyprepper,

            I think you raise a very valid point, TOP. We all like to ‘brag’ about what we have and what we can ‘do’. It’s human nature. But in the ‘prepper world’, acknowledging your weaknesses is seen as a weakness, mostly.

            I used to feel much more that way, with the can do, get out of my way attitude. My skill set in most areas was rather wide; but, I was always willing to admit when I didn’t know something, so I could learn from those who did. Then in my late 40’s I started having some shortness of breath, followed by a few angioplasties and a quadruple CABG in 1998. That CABG meant a week in the hospital and 6-8 weeks getting enough strength back to do normal things again.
            That will teach you, that you have limits
            I still have most of the knowledge; but, some of the skills are not as honed as they once were.

            I think being able to acknowledge your ‘weaknesses’ makes you even better prepared. It is an acknowledgement, and enables one to know where they may need to put more focus in pursuing skills/knowledge/’stuff’.

            To which I will add, MAG members or friends who can help with things you can no longer do.

            For instance, if your ‘group’ has more tech savvy folks but few medically savvy, your priority would be finding the medically savvy.

            Yep, and medical is probably better in the long run than tech. I have a rather complete FAK with numerous medications and technology I hope to never use; but, if me or mine is down for the count, my neighbors (a Fire Chief Paramedic and a Nurse Practitioner) will at least have extra tools and meds to help us or others.

            I am human. I can be cocky when I need to, but I am willing to ask for help when I need it (grudgingly, I admit).

            You cocky? LOL
            When I first lost enough vision to no longer be able to drive on the highways, I didn’t want to impose on other people; but, then they started calling and offering me things like rides to meetings, etc. I found out later, that often, the DW would call and prod them into calling me, since she knew I wouldn’t call them. I now accept help willingly; but, also willingly help others when & where I can.

            But those folks who say ‘I can do it all I don’t need your help, I’ll survive in the woods on my own’, I just feel sorry for them.

            I was that guy back in my 20’s, not cocky; but, having only a few prepper (survivalist) friends so it was essential for me to be able to be that guy. I spent my first 3 days in the woods “surviving” at age 14 with an adult mentor training me,, and in my 20’s spending weekends in the woods the same way, practicing for scenarios I luckily never encountered in real life.
            In my 20’s I was also a backpacker, rock climber, spelunker, SCUBA diver and jump out of a perfectly good airplane a few times; but, now some 40 years later, I would be hard pressed to do any of those things, except maybe the spelunking.

            I hate that saying ‘it takes a village’ but I don’t see the ‘loner’ lasting for long. (nemoseto, you are an exception to that, and I am sure there are others)

            Actually ”It takes a village to raise a child” is something preppers should all embrace, since this saying seems to have originated as an ancient African proverb or from a Native American Tribe.
            When Tara talks about her tribe members teaching skills to the youth, this is the essence of the phrase.
            Unfortunately, HRC and her leftist ilk have co-opted the meaning to convince people that the village elders are the socialists in government, who desperately need to brainwash the kids before they can think for themselves and tell them all where to go.
            As for nemoseto, I could probably do most of what he does at his age (40’ish); but, give him another 25+ years, and hopefully he’ll have a tribe with younger members to assist him,
            I prepared quite well for life and also very well for retirement (financially); but, I don’t think I ever really thought about preparing for old age, and that’s the one thing we cannot stop or control, so now we take it a day at a time and continue to do our best.

          2. TOP,

            I did all those crazy things too as a Marine. Never was comfortable with SCUBA as I was a weak swimmer, but everything else was OK. At least I did the SCUBA in Okinawa where it is a great place for that.

            One of my best two-weeks in the Corps was when a corporal and I (I was a sergeant then) were put way out in the woods in the Sierra Nevadas to play partisans in an escape and evasion exercise an infantry battalion was doing. I was a city boy, but my partner was a farm kid and he knew a lot of stuff about living wild. I learned a lot from him. Bonus: we got to wear civvies.

            While we had plenty of C-Rats to last us, since the day time was mostly ours, we did a lot of stream trout fishing with hand lines and frog jigging with home-made jigs. Better than plain old Cs. The area was also home to Basque sheep herders and they came through our spot a couple of times and we shared bota bags of wine with them. We bought some six-packs of beer and soda from them too and kept them cold in the nearby stream. The weather was great for all two-weeks. Good times had by all (except the grunts doing the exercise). I think if the Marine Corps knew how much fun we had, they would have put us on annual leave status instead of duty. 🙂

          3. Zulu 3-6,

            Never was comfortable with SCUBA as I was a weak swimmer, but everything else was OK. At least I did the SCUBA in Okinawa where it is a great place for that.

            I did my SCUBA here in Ohio initially, first in pools for training; but, mostly in quarries, some of which were set up for just that purpose. I did a few swift water dives in the St. Claire River in Michigan and a dive on the Forest City near Tobermory Canada in Lake Huron. What finally ruined it for me was a trip in the mid 1970’s to Florida. We dived Pennekamp Coral Reef State park @ Key Largo for several days and then hit some gulf stream diving off of West Palm Beach. This water was warm and clear; but, spoiled me for diving back in Ohio. Here, even in quarries down to perhaps 60 feet. There are thermocline layers to deal with, which means wearing a ”Farmer John” wetsuit, even in July heat. For the non-divers, think of a double set of rubber coveralls, that keep you warm in 40° water; but, are horrible in 90° heat.
            We are planning to visit my sister in Key West this fall and I’m hoping to do some diving there. She’s a diver and got to the point of taking her dive master Qual’s; but, decided not to, since there are obligations and responsibilities that come with that certification she did not need or want.

            One of my best two-weeks in the Corps was when a corporal and I (I was a sergeant then) were put way out in the woods in the Sierra Nevadas to play partisans in an escape and evasion exercise an infantry battalion was doing. I was a city boy, but my partner was a farm kid and he knew a lot of stuff about living wild. I learned a lot from him. Bonus: we got to wear civvies.

            I had to laugh at this art imitates life event.
            In the series “Gomer Pyle USMC” episode ”Survival of the Fattest” (1964)
            Gomer and Gunnery Sgt. Carter participate in survival training for the platoon. Two man teams must rough it for five days. Thinking Gomer will bring down the platoon rating, the sergeant takes him for his partner. Gomer’s small-town, backwoods upbringing turns out to be an asset. When sergeant Carter digs a hole to find muddy water and tells Gomer it just needs filtering, Gomer shows him the full canteens he’s already filled from a local spring along with some still living fish in the water in his helmet. At the end of the episode, as the two walk to the EXFIL point, Sgt. Carter is puffing on a hand rolled cigar and both have gained 5 pounds that will later require some ‘splaining

            I think if the Marine Corps knew how much fun we had, they would have put us on annual leave status instead of duty.

            You simply saw a problem and overcame it, right?

    6. Thor1,

      Good job on the workout…. I know I’m not in shape like I need to be, but I am working on my organizing…. Can’t work on 2 major changes at once…

      I agree with Z36… Puppy needs a hazmat sign. 🙂

  8. Hi everyone,

    Got some really nice weather here in TN today, and supposed to be tomorrow too. The NFL draft took over the city for the last 2 weeks, and I will be glad when they are gone. Too many people… Shuts everything down.

    Received the 5 rolls of the Sam Splint type bandage. Had forgotten about them. Bought a SS restaurant pan with steamer from someone on FB. Also an antique glass butter mold.

    Woke up today with a sinus infection… There’s too much to do around here to be sick, but my cheeks and teeth really hurt. Nose running like a sieve. Need to go ahead and get the salt water rinses going. Maybe I can head off a full blown infection.

    Tara’s questions:

    What experiences have you had with incubating poultry birds? Please share your tips and what you have learned from failed hatched with various birds. None.

    What one self-reliance skill do you think children should be taught from an early age and why? Guns. I never was taught, and at my age, it’s not good to not be comfortable with guns.

    What communications plan and supplies will you and tribe or loved ones use during a disaster? I have HAM radios, and have my license, but haven’t practiced.. Too much going on with the organizing… I can only do one thing at a time…

    Thor’s questions:

    1. Do you or have you felt like you’re a prepper hoarder? All the time… Non-prep friends agree.

    2. What is the weakest part of your prepping ? Water,food,defense, medical, physical fitness…ect. ? Having LMI/MAG close by to hook up with.

    3. What is the worst situation that you are prepping for? economy crashing and war on the home front

    Prayers for healing, unspoken requests, for The President and for America.

    Have a great week everyone.

    1. Almost There,
      Woke up today with a sinus infection… There’s too much to do around here to be sick, but my cheeks and teeth really hurt. Nose running like a sieve. Need to go ahead and get the salt water rinses going. Maybe I can head off a full blown infection.
      That seems to be going around. I had the runny nose & a little fatigue; but, hydration and rest seems to have kicked it. The DW seemed to have what you have, with aches and sinus pain, especially as the weather fronts move around. At our NVIS get together today, a few of the gang complained about something similar.

    1. Thor1,

      A 12-hour unannounced lights out drill is no big deal. Happens all the time in the real world, usually thanks to Mother Nature.

      People at Bragg should be reasonably prepared for a hurricane, thus a power outage of some hours, or days, duration.

      In 2017, Hurricane Irma put me in the dark for 21-hours. Not a big deal. In fact, I was more surprised when the power came back on when it did than when it went out. Other people (including #1 daughter) were out for a week or more.

  9. Good afternoon everyone,

    Weather here has been nice as well with the exception of a rain day before yesterday that dropped the temps down into 40’s again. I believe this will be the last of the cool, cool nights until fall. I had some friends drop in the last few days (on their way to N. Carolina) from AZ. They wanted to see Helen, Ga (quaint Alpine town), and Stone Mtn. This took me away from building a new raised garden structure, but it was all good. Enjoyed the visit.
    Today’s Questions:
    1. No experience with chickens. Would love to have the experience.
    2. I think children should be taught how to grow their own food.
    3. Communications plans – still working on this one. We have designated a meet up location for all if/when SHTF. More needs to be done – i.e. Trial run would be good, with use of different ways to get there. You never know. May have car,but road washed out – then what.

    Now to Thor’s questions:
    1. Yes, I have felt like a hoarder, but like someone else said, I’ve now sorted items and have much better organization, and have culled out some items for sale or harder.
    2. I would say physical endurance. Staying active and keeping yourself fit is a very important prep, so even on the days I don’t really want to exercise I remind myself of the Nike motto: ‘Just Do It.”
    3. Economic collapse is always a concern as well as a discard to our Constitution whereby some bonehead political power does try to make me turn in my weapons. However, my biggest concern to-date is the next presidential election and who will be running the country.

    Have a great week and don’t forget to take some time for yourself and your family.

  10. i have never used an artificial incubator, i am off grid and can’t power one reliably, i let the chickens do it the old fashion way. my bantams will hatch out 2 or 3 clutches a year each and the buff orpingtons are pretty good at brooding too. i waited till early april to let them hatch chicks (use a broody breaker before that) this way the weather isn’t too cold and the chicks will survive, any hatched after august 1st also have a high mortality rate from cool mornings (the hens start foraging and the babies are cold huddling together with mama ignoring their being cold, up to 95% mortlity with late season chicks), and have 4 clutches hatched already and and 4 more due in the next few days. got 5 more broodies starting too. they will hatch any eggs i give them (from other breeds, or duck or turkey eggs) and the bantams will usually take fostered chicks (if i get new ones from a hatchery i order them to arive with a clutch htching here nd mix the chicks in t night, the hens will take all they can get and i have got some bantms to take up to 20 chicks).

    the difference between food and pets, too many kids think every animal is a pet, and it eventually becomes so (i knew people keeping inbred herds of “pet” cattle they had started as a beef calf, then had it bred, it had bull that impregnated it and then there was a herd after a while, and they kept hemoraging money on feed for the pet cattle since their daughters cried at the idea of butchering the cattle, to the point they were broke and their kids went hungry). too many people think chickens are pets, or hogs, or cattle. kids need to learn the difference between pets and food, and need to know where their food comes from.

    none, i deal in person and never rely on a cell or internet, thats an occassional luxury.

    well from the first question i guess its obvious i been dealing with new chicks born on the farm, got my bike back from the repair shop (the old one, not the new one i got when i dropped the old one off for repairs) did a lot of biking and walking, and a little yard work but too muddy otherwise, sold a few odds and ends. and went to a farm auction today, was outbid on a lot of stuff but i did pick up a 3pt hitch cyclebar mower for $75 and a big H&S shit spreader wagon (uses tractor pto, looks big enough to hold 5 cords of wood and is strong enough too) figure i can move wood locally behind my tractor with it, use it to muck out the barn and spread it on the garden. and i have a neighbor that wants to use it for the same. i got it for $275, and i could probably resell for a profit later on. was outbid on a couple 2 bottom plows, and a few disks, and 2 tractors. thought about bidding on some motor boats with trailers and everything, bids were low around $50, figured i could buy them and wait till summer when people are fishing and boating on the seaway or lake champlain, and resell them for a profit when demand is up but i decided to pass on that. making plans to expand or improve my farm, i have an oportunity to double or tripple the size of my land, if that falls through i have made some more local contacts who could stump grind my pasture and put in tile, then i can use that scyclebar mower to make hay on it (potential hay area 16 acres, the rest would stay as pasture since its too rocky to bother with). had a little snow today but otherwise mostly rain. also opened a facebutt account under an alias to sell stuff (baby chickens, fence posts, lumber, and firewood mostly)

    Thor1’s questions

    not really, i have a rapid rotational mentality where i sell off stuff i no longer use or need and use it to fund purchasing better stuff (like when i moved from my old cabin into a bigger one, the old one was portable so i sold it and bought a tractor with the money). i also use what i stock, i have a year supply of chicken feed in barrels, when one is empty i move to the next and refill the empty, rotating and refilling, so i always have a long supply and if i can’t resupply by purchasing it within a yer i have a year to replenish it by other means. i don’t put much stock into having a bunker full of stuff i might need one day, i value knowledge far more and basic tools. even if i have to leave the area i have the skills to use only what i can carry and build a new farm elsewhere, or can live off the land, and my skills make me farm more valuable in a group than most. supplies run out, but the man who can make supplies is always in demand. if i horde anything its stuff i just have too much of (like the 30 gallons of canned applesauce in quarts, i got free apples and a wood stove for saucing and water bath canning, if i got nothing else to do i can can up apples, then if a crop fails i can wait a year or 2 till the next. though my cabin is overfilled with cans that way, or my firewood stockpiles, though i tend to trade or sell it off in the fall, i had so many libtards yell at me accusing me of hording firewood and telling me i should give it away to the needy since i had more than i could use in 20 years, i replied the needy are welcome to it, as long as they pay me for it, and if they aint got cash i am always willing to make trades for stuff i need).

    i don’t think i have a particular weakness, i am highly skilled and adaptable, i think the only thing i can’t handle would be a massive asteroid strike, but then everyone else would be just as screwed and it wouldn’t matter. used to be water, but then i had a well drilled and its artesian and i have better water than most of my neighbors now, also have a pond and collect rain still, and i have several means of filtering if i have any question as to quality.

    the most likely would be perminant oil shortage (peak oil), but then i am not as dependant on it as most, and have the means and willingness to get an ox or 2 or a mule. use solar already, and grow my own food, and make an income selling surpluses, maybe pandemic, or a serious economic collapse. in all those situations i am fairly well off, and if there is a zombie uprising i will probably be named king of the north through my owning zombie proof ringmail and being skilled with a sword.

    1. nemoseto,

      the most likely would be perminant oil shortage (peak oil), but then i am not as dependant on it as most

      Now there’s a phrase I haven’t heard in a long time, <strong”<Peak Oil” that has proven to be a myth like the Loch Ness Monster.
      With the fracking going on around the country, places like the Permian Basin, that contains the Mid-Continent Oil Field located in western Texas and southeastern New Mexico are producing tons of product.
      The Bakken Formation occupies about 200,000 square miles of the subsurface of the Williston Basin, and lies under parts of Montana, North Dakota, Saskatchewan and Manitoba.
      As of May 1, 2017, Pennsylvania had 129,587 active oil and gas wells.
      The US now produces more oil than any other country with production being in this order: USA, Saudi Arabia, Russia, China and Canada
      We are now producing more than we can use and are about to become a net exporter, especially LNG to Europe.
      The biggest problem in oil production is the lack of transport; but, on Apr 11, 2019, President Trump issued two executive orders that could make it harder for states to block companies from building oil and gas pipeline projects. As I understand it the unions are now on his side, since these pipeline projects that were scuttled by Obama, will bring a lot of high paying construction jobs and eventually more oil products to market, potentially dropping gas prices.

      1. fracking is fairly new technology, and has not stopped the end of oil it has just delayed it again. when peak oil theory came out in the 40s it was projected that the major oil resources known at the time would be depleted by the 70s at the rate of consumption of the time and projected for the future. in the 70s there was an oil shortage until huge reserves were found in the middle east, the numbers were recalculated and peak oil was re-estimated for around 2010. again that was based on oil harvesting tech of the time, shale oil and tar sands, etc was known about but there wasn’t a good way to make use of it (its still debatable based on the impact to comunities around fracking opperations if there is a good way to do it). since then the technology to use that less than ideal oil source has been developed and pushed back the oil depletion a few more years, most likely when they run out again i will be too old to give a damn anyway (figure another 30 to 40 years, i’ll be around 70 or 80 then). the bp oil spill is an example of running out of good oil sources, used to be they could get it on shore in the gulf, then when it ran out they went into shallow water to drill, then when that was used up they went out into deeper water where the risks were much higher to get to much harder to reach sources since the better ones were depleted, that spill happened because they were in places where it took extreme conditions to reach oil and had coresponding higher risks. a number of places with fracking are suffering from toxic ground water as a result of extreme measures to reach hard to access fuel, having to go after less than ideal sources taking greater effort and higher risks. we will never really run out of oil, but there will come a time when its going to be really hard to access the few sources left. peak oil is just when it gets more expensive to produce than it brings back and becomes prohibitivly expensive. when the fracking becomes ineffective and used up maybe we will have another technology buy more time again, but it will happen eventually.

        1. Nemoseto,

          fracking is fairly new technology, and has not stopped the end of oil it has just delayed it again. when peak oil theory came out in the 40s it was projected that the major oil resources known at the time would be depleted by the 70s at the rate of consumption of the time and projected for the future. in the 70s there was an oil shortage until huge reserves were found in the middle east, the numbers were recalculated and peak oil was re-estimated for around 2010

          fracking is fairly new technology?

          Modern day hydraulic fracturing began in the 1940’s. In 1947 (4 years before I was on the scene), Floyd Farris of Stanolind Oil and Gas began a study on the relationship between oil and gas production output, and the amount of pressurized treatment being used on each well. It seems modern to us, since it’s rather controversial and in the news; but, it’s been around for a long time, with the only real improvements, being materials, computer control & sensor technology that allow better control and management of the process.
          I was just out of college in the 1970’s and that shortage was mostly contrived by our enemies in the Middle East. There were gas lines due to shortages; but, no real price increase. Luckily I only lived about 6 blocks from my place of employment at the time and would often walk to work.

          its still debatable based on the impact to comunities around fracking operations.
          While sensational pseudo documentaries like ”Gasland” are out there, the more scientifically based versions like ”FrackNation” are systematically kept secret by activists and their ignorant lapdog media. Properly performed, Fracking has proven to be safe. In Gasland they demonstrated how gas was coming up from the water well; but, further investigations showed that their demonstration of burning off the flaring from a pipe was not the water well. The end justifies the means (and the lies) seem to be prevalent in some places.

          since then the technology to use that less than ideal oil source has been developed and pushed back the oil depletion a few more years, most likely when they run out again i will be too old to give a damn anyway

          We still have deep water and the ANWR (Arctic National Wildlife Refuge) with lots of proven reserves and alternative energy and storage sources are being developed. Keep in mind that oil first provided kerosene for lighting when we first reached peak oil. John D. Rockefeller became wealthy by developing kerosene to replace that upcoming shortage of whale oil.

          The first oil in the US was found ”oozing” from the ground near Titusville, Pennsylvania; but, that small quantity was increased by use of the new technology for drilling and hit oil on August 27, 1859. That site was only about 100 miles from where I grew up, and we visited it several times when I was a kid. New technology for finding new oil resources goes back more than a century so stating that we only have new oil because of new technology has always been true.

          We once had no airplanes and now regularly fly around the world without being rich to do it. When the first personal computer was introduced, some thought it was impossibility. We humans, faced with challenges have always risen to the task, and I see no reason that will stop using of course, new technology.

          figure another 30 to 40 years, i’ll be around 70 or 80 then).

          I’ll likely be dead and gone by then; but, even life extending technology has improved much in my lifetime, so who really knows?

          the bp oil spill is an example of running out of good oil sources, used to be they could get it on shore in the gulf, then when it ran out they went into shallow water to drill, then when that was used up they went out into deeper water where the risks were much higher to get to much harder to reach sources since the better ones were depleted

          If you mean the “Deepwater Horizon” event, that was not a spill as much as a leak from a blowout preventer, a technology that has since been fixed. Over the years technology failures have seen plane crash and building collapse; but, each event allows us to continue forward.
          Also recall that the leak was coming from a self pressurized hole and that small leaks like that are all over the ocean floor, continuously oozing pressurized oil into the water. An earthquake at the proper place and time can cause something similar to occur, and some have; but, don’t make the news, since it fits no ones agenda.

          By ”good oil sources” , I suspect you mean easy to reach, and not the quality of the crude; but, keep in mind that this progression started as an oozing puddle on the ground (really easy to reach), and getting to other oil always took more technology.

          that spill happened because they were in places where it took extreme conditions to reach oil and had coresponding higher risks.

          Yep; but, no higher than making a new aircraft fly, sending a man to the moon, or doing the first organ transplant, all of which are now relatively common.

          a number of places with fracking are suffering from toxic ground water as a result of extreme measures to reach hard to access fuel

          I still find this debatable. Reference my “Gasland” and “Fracknation” above.

          we will never really run out of oil, but there will come a time when its going to be really hard to access the few sources left.

          True, and probably something they thought back in the 1800’s, standing around that puddle of ooze in western PA as they scooped up the last bits of it. Dang, we gotta drill a well.

          peak oil is just when it gets more expensive to produce than it brings back and becomes prohibitivly expensive. when the fracking becomes ineffective and used up maybe we will have another technology buy more time again, but it will happen eventually.

          I agree; but, all too often, those predicting it either do not foresee future technology, or have their own agenda to control the people, like ”The Green New Deal”

          And for Grammyprepper, I worked on this reply off and on for several hours, all in a word document. This allowed me to reread (actually re-listen) to sections to craft just the right words and phrases and to check on details of the response.
          Of course, this does often support rather long (hopefully no too boring) responses. LOL

          1. you make some good points, i think i made a few as well, anyway i don’t think much on peak oil being the cause of a collapse of society or anything, i listed it among waht i think would be most probable (as in possible, i have seen some really fr out scenarios online people are woried about). lack of fuel is one of the most likely, though still far unlikely. i also mentioned economic collapse (great depression level) or pandemic, i threw in zombies just because they are all over the media.

          2. nemoseto says:

            you make some good points, i think i made a few as well, anyway i don’t think much on peak oil being the cause of a collapse of society or anything, i listed it among waht i think would be most probable (as in possible,

            Roght now we are swimming in oil; but, problems in places like Venezuela can be concerning. The president has signed some paperwork to allow pipeline construction to begin, since transport has been one of the biggest hurdles in getting crude to the refineries and finished / refined products to the end user.

            i have seen some really fr out scenarios online people are woried about). lack of fuel is one of the most likely, though still far unlikely. i also mentioned economic collapse (great depression level) or pandemic, i threw in zombies just because they are all over the media.

            I think the economy is in pretty good shape, although the left and their media lapdogs can’t admit that, since ”resisting” the HRC killer seems to be their only focus.
            Pandemic is unlikely and there are serious plans in place should it occur, although epidemic in some areas is possible as the measles outbreaks shows us; but, this is mostly due to ignorance and superstition about vaccinations, hyper focused by “fake” social media reports where anyone can say anything and others are ignorant enough to believe without vetting.

            As for the zombies, I have my own long term perspective on that. Early social media involved the Usenet newsgroups with groups like ”rec.guns” & ”misc.survivalism” and topics about defending your homestead were a bit touchy back in the late 1980’s and 1990’s, so came the invention of the ”MZB” or Mutant Zombie Bikers. Survivalists were already considered the “Kooks” who lived in bunkers & caves with their cache of food & firearms, so defending yourself against city folk only looking to move in and ”share” your stuff, would be just one more black eye; but, defending against the MZB’s was justified by everyone involved.

  11. all,

    The curse word named trail was dubbed by me because that is what I yelled more than once when my beloved and I were creating it. It was FULL of briar bushes, ruts, thick grapevine that would smack you in the head or side through the roll cage on the side-by-side and was incredibly steep. I believe my cursing was entirely warranted, but my mother might disagree.

    There’s nothing wrong with cursing as long as it’s not a common and chronic form of speech. I remember a phrase I was told or read many years ago about its effectiveness. ”I only curse for emphasis, Dam it!!!”

    Radio training was also a priority this week. We practice not only usage and the channel switching routine, but the easy-to-recall code that I created after adapting a prepper code sheet we happened across online about five years ago now.

    This is interesting since we had more than a dozen ham operators at my location today to practice local emergency communications using HF radio and special antenna configurations. This statewide event was called Ohio NVIS (Near Vertical Incident Skywave) day and the group contacted about ¼ of the counties including the state EOC (Emergency Operation Center). The test and training ran from 10:00 until 16:00 and it was a bright sunny if a little bit cool day, right up until about 15:30 when we were getting ready to tear down anyway.

    There is a no-tech communications plan on our survival retreat as well that involves using a combination of knife markings on trees and color signs created using either bandanas or little cans of spray paint that are part of everyone’s gear and cached around the property.

    So you are going back to the old days of <strong””Marking” or ”Blazing” a trail. Good technique to know.

    Tara’s Questions:
    1. What experiences have you had with incubating poultry birds? Please share your tips and what you have learned from failed hatched with various birds.
    My DD hatched the first birds (chickens) as a 7th grade science fair project. The incubator only had a temperature and humidity control and she had to turn the eggs manually. Part of the way into the incubation, the eggs were removed one at a time, the end of the shell was cleaned with alcohol and a small hole was cut into the eggshell using a bur and Dremel tool to exposed the inner layer, at which point food coloring was injected into the egg. The hole was cleaned again with alcohol and covered with a piece of medical tape. 17 of the 18 eggs hatched (94%) and the birds were multicolored as one would expect; but, none worse the wear. When those initial pin feather started to grow out, the new growth were the normal yellow one would expect.
    2.
    What one self-reliance skill do you think children should be taught from an early age and why?
    To keep calm in adversity, since more people are harmed by panic than situations they encounter. We teach a technique in hunter education with the acronym
    STOP!! forSit, Think, Observe, Plan. Sit and try to be calm, think about your situation and then make a plan. Clown car drills will only get you hurt or in worse shape than you started.
    3. What communications plan and supplies will you and tribe or loved ones use during a disaster?
    This is the easy one I’ve been training for, for 40+ years. Both the DW and I are licensed amateur radio operators (hams). Me for 43 years and her for 38 years. Getting her license was a prerequisite for our marriage, LOL. I have more ways to communicate than I can count; but, if I try I get at least 12 radios and 4 of the unlicensed FRS.GMRS radios that could be used by anyone. My VHF system can communicate
    directly with all of my surrounding counties and my digital and HF equipment can communicate nationwide or worldwide.
    In addition we always participate in the yearly field day.

    Field Day is ham radio’s open house. Every June, more than 40,000 hams throughout North America set up temporary transmitting stations in public places to demonstrate ham radio’s science, skill and service to our communities and our nation. It combines public service, emergency preparedness, community outreach, and technical skills all in a single event. Field Day has been an annual event since 1933, and remains the most popular event in ham radio.

    See more @ http://www.arrl.org/field-day

    4. What did y’all do to prep this week?

    This past week we acquired and did the following.
    1. Received quantity 10: Neodymium rare earth super magnets from my Hong Kong supplier
    2. Received quantity 2: Kitchen timers from my Hong Kong supplier
    3. Received quantity 2: Durable Tactical One-handed Tourniquet Medical Compression Stanch Belt from my Hong Kong supplier for the FAK
    4. Received a 10 meter RP-SMA Male to Female Wi-Fi Antenna Connector Extension Cable – Black from my Hong Kong supplier
    5. From our local country market, butcher shop, and deli.
    • 6 pounds of thick cut smoked bacon
    • 2 pounds of ham salad
    • 2 pounds of potato salad
    6. An Airsoft pistol and a pack of 1000, 6 mm pellets from Dollar General, per Tara’s mention last week.
    7. 20 rolls of toilet paper
    8. Received 2 Interactive Cat Laser Pointer Toys from woot.com
    9. Watched several episodes of the weather channel’s
    ”So you think you’d survive” & others of “SOS How to Survive”. These are good refreshers, placing you in both imagined and real disaster scenarios, and quizzing you on how to survive, with descriptions of the correct responses. For instance, you can make any water potable by adding 2 drops of household bleach per liter of water, so that 2-liter bottle takes 4 drops to make it safe. If you don’t have a dropper, pour some bleach into the cap, dip in a paper towel or coffee filter, and squeeze those drops from it. Most of these are scenarios I understand and I do well in answering; but, a simple refresher never hurts. If you are in a flood area and may need to shelter in your highest floor or attic, make sure you have a way out, like an axe.
    10. Reread (actually listened to) “The Screwtape Letters” By C. S. Lewis (dedicated to J. R. R. Tolkien). While originally published in 1942 it could be discussing the people of today, with the following start of chapter one:

    Note what you say about guiding our patient’s reading and taking care that he sees a good deal of his materialist friends. But are you not being a trifle naive? It sounds as if you supposed that argument was the way to keep him out of the Enemy’s clutches. That might have been so if he had lived a few centuries earlier. At that time the humans still knew pretty well when a thing was proved and when it was not; and if it was proved they really believed it. They still connected thinking with doing and were prepared to alter their way of life as the result of a chain of reasoning. But what with the weekly press and other such weapons we have largely altered that. Your man has been accustomed, ever since he was a boy, to have a dozen incompatible philosophies dancing about together inside his head. He doesn’t think of doctrines as primarily “true” or “false ” , but as “academic ” or “practical ”, “outworn ” or “contemporary ”, “conventional ” or “ruthless ”. Jargon, not argument, is your best ally in keeping him from the Church. Don’t waste time trying to make him think that materialism is true! Make him think it is strong, or stark, or courageous. That it is the philosophy of the future. That’s the sort of thing he cares about

    This is the discussion of uncle Screwtape, one of the executives in hell, coaching his underling, who is on earth, trying to recruit souls. Keep in mind that this was in 1942, long before the internet & social media. This book is simply a good reminder of the human condition and thought processes that too many people fall into.
    Regardless of your type of faith or lack of it, this story is an incite full look into the human psyche.
    For those who have not read this excellent story, you can find it here: http://www.preachershelp.net/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/lewis-screwtape-letters.pdf

    11. The DW & I attended our weekly EMA meeting and participated in a training session on deploying and operating one of the many generators we have available along with some of the area lighting systems we can deploy on a scene. For me this was a refresher, and for her, a new experience; but, one that makes us all more prepared.
    12. We received a call from Citi Bank fraud about a charge of $1.00 in Flint Michigan that was declined. We were not in Flint so they canceled the cards and sent us new ones via Fed Ex. This has happened twice before in the distant past and for those who have seen such a thing, is a real PITA. This time however, we only have to change our card listed with PayPal, since the bank told us they will make the appropriate changes with both Amazon & Netflix. We can also log onto our card account and retrieved the new numbers. Personally, I think those who purposely and fraudulently use another’s account or stolen identity should be given a long tropical vacation in Guantanamo or taught to skydive without a chute; but, that’s just crazy old me. PS note, they did not change the Amazon or Netflix accounts, so we should all trust; but, verify.
    13. Ordered a 4-Pack of 8-Outlet Surge Protectors from woot.com. This old house is really short of available outlets and these will allow our charging locations to be more manageable.
    14. We held this year’s NVIS (Near Vertical Incident Skywave) operation at our property this year. The operation consists of setting up numerous field expedient antennas oriented for NVIS operation, and then contacting as many Ohio county operations as possible using HF (High Frequency AKA Shortwave) communications. Usually local and small regional communications involves VHF (Very High Frequency) & UHF (Ultra High Frequency) frequencies and often uses repeaters, while HF is used for long distance (DX) communication both nationally and internationally. This operation trains us to configure & use HF for the local communications in case of a failure of some of the local or statewide infrastructure.
    15. Watched President Trump’s keynote speech @ the NRA National Convention in Indianapolis. Two points of note, were the elimination of ”Operation Chokepoint” and withdrawal of the signature and pulling the paperwork back from the senate for the as yet incomplete ratification of the ”U.N. Small Arms Treaty”
    16. Received 10 LED grow lamps from my Hong Kong supplier
    17. Purchased a MAC-200 Master Antenna Controller from a local Silent Key’s family. This allows selection and tuning of up to 5 antennas.
    18. Purchased a Hantek 365B Isolated USB Data Logger for the shop from o

  12. Community consignment sale next weekend, so I’ve been cleaning out closets and cabinets. I have ten boxes of stuff for the sale, and another half dozen boxes and bags for Goodwill. I’m hearing/reading that the thrift stores are being overwhelmed by the Marie Kondo “get rid of it” craze. Aside from toilet paper 😉 , yes, we have too much stuff. Why did we buy two slider pans? We haven’t eaten sliders since they were a “thing” ten years ago.

    Self-reliance for children: Critical thinking skills. The old cartoon — “No one on the internet knows you’re a dog.” Don’t believe everything you see and hear. Seek out reliable sources of information, and several of them. Focus on “reliable” — journalists who practice the tenets of journalism — facts, fairness, objectivity — as opposed to the yackety-yack opinion BS that is all too prevalent. Also, the ability to think clearly in a crisis. It helps to take even a few seconds to breathe, re-center, and focus. There’s a tale of a Russian cosmonaut whose spaceship was facing some problem. He disconnected, took a nap for 15 minutes, and was then clear-minded enough to tackle the problem.

    I attended our state emergency management agency’s annual conference this week. Pick your disaster — economic collapse, pandemic, insurrection — but the Russians AND the Chinese have been inside our power grid for TEN YEARS. The power companies don’t want to spend the $ to mitigate the problem. It was pretty eye-opening. A grid-down right before the 2020 election would not surprise me.

    1. Tamarind,

      I attended our state emergency management agency’s annual conference this week. Pick your disaster — economic collapse, pandemic, insurrection — but the Russians AND the Chinese have been inside our power grid for TEN YEARS. The power companies don’t want to spend the $ to mitigate the problem. It was pretty eye-opening. A grid-down right before the 2020 election would not surprise me.

      Who presented this information to you?
      This is my 20th year working with our local county EMA (Emergency Management Agency) and there have been no specific actionable threats that I know of. There are however, two specific items that clash with your assertions about the grid and the company’s unwillingness.
      First, while HEMP could bring down the entire power & communications grids, it’s nearly impossible to bring down the entire power grid via a cyber attack, since there are three large unconnected grids in the east, west, and Texas, plus power management can and has disconnected segments to keep one bad segment from dragging down the others.
      As for the power companies not wanting to spend the monies to mitigate the problem, at some level they cannot, since as regulated monopoly utilities, there are certain capital and other requirements they have to follow by law.
      It is still however a good idea to have personal contingencies for such events, since large scale outages don’t need a conspiracy or EMP to occur, as history has often shown us. That is the reason we have invested in equipment to handle such potential issues.

      1. Who presented this information? A reliable source who is plugged in to the security community. I wouldn’t have asserted it if I thought he was an unreliable source. This guy: https://michaelmabee.info. Yes, the grid is *somewhat* disconnected, but it takes a quick trigger finger on the controls to prevent things from cascading. And the point is, the Russians and Chinese are inside ALL of our grid. And yes, the power companies have to follow certain capital requirements, but that does not mean they can’t spend money on cyber security. They just don’t want to, and they lobby heavily in Congress against any mandates. Our electric grid is enourmously vulnerable, folks. Prep accordingly.

        1. And on the same topic, the book “Lights Out” by Ted Koppel. A straight up, no “fake news” journalist if ever there was one. I fully expect a grid blackout, engineered by the Russians, just ahead of the 2010 election.

          1. Tamarind,

            Who presented this information? A reliable source who is plugged in to the security community. I wouldn’t have asserted it if I thought he was an unreliable source. This guy: Michael Mabee

            I looked at his site and the only information we have available on him is his own site, where every description starts with ”I”. HE may be a great author and the information on the link you posted seemed to be accurate; but, very generic, and nothing I haven’t known about for decades.

            From the article:

            Here’s an example of how time-consuming the regulatory process is. The “Great Northeast Blackout” of August 14, 2003 was caused by inadequate vegetation management (i.e., a tree branch in Ohio).

            This started a cascading failure which resulted in 55 million people out of power – almost the entire northeastern U.S. and part of Canada. This blackout was the direct impetus to come up with a standard for vegetation management. It took the industry and FERC until March 21, 2013 – nearly a decade – to establish and approve a final rule for “Transmission Vegetation Management”

            I remember this event, since my monitoring equipment here at the house saw it coming about 3-5 minutes before the event, and we had our power out for only about 4 hours.

            The included video (”Black Sky”) is also well done; but, seems to be the standard “Hair on Fire” kind of treatment, even mentioning “The Carrington Event” as a bogy man. A Carrington Event is very unlikely in the modern age, since NASA runs SOHO and Space Weather is now a full time job, that gives utility and satellite operators plenty of warning time, since the fastest recorded CME to date was around 3000 km/s which would have taken between 13 and 15 minutes to reach the earth, while a “nominal” CME will take 12-48 hrs to reach earth, so plenty of time to react and predictions are also getting better.
            Then they talk about terrorists creating an EMP, something that is highly unlikely for any non-state actor, and the non nuclear EMP carried in a suitcase is IMHO more “hair on fire” myth, since the maximum energy density of current battery technology and the inverse square law would seriously limit the effectiveness and range of any such device.

            Perhaps the most disturbing thing about this whole scheme is that there is no federal law that says that the grid has to protect itself from hazards and threats. In fact, as previously noted, “itself” is thousands of separate companies that regulate themselves through NERC.

            Would a Federal law even help this? The estimates I’ve heard for a combination of Cyber and EMP mitigation is somewhere between $2-3B; but, our congresscritters can’t even break loose that measly 0.07% of the budget to fund this mitigation, so that indicates its overall perceived importance.

            Our very survival is dependent on the industry’s willingness to do the right thing. They are not required to do the right thing. The industry will occasionally do the minimum that they feel they have to do to avoid the government getting off its slow and lumbering buttocks and doing something drastic to protect the grid – and the United States – from catastrophe.

            I have worked designing SCADA systems for power utilities, and they cannot spend money they don’t have. They also cannot raise their rates since the tariffs in place by the state Public Utility or Public Service commissions are generally multiyear with little wiggle room. Government has already closed some generation facilities in Ohio, because after spending millions on particulate and SO2 scrubbers, they cannot meet the new rules being placed on them, after the fact

            Yes, the grid is *somewhat* disconnected, but it takes a quick trigger finger on the controls to prevent things from cascading. And the point is, the Russians and Chinese are inside ALL of our grid.

            I’m sorry; but, I have friends who spent careers in that industry and while some things may be compromised, stating that ALL are compromised is IMHO in error, especially since the SCADA and other control systems are written in a variety of languages on diverse hardware platforms, so a single virus or Malware is highly unlikely to infect all systems at once; but, the allegation does sell books and keep people’s attention.

            One thing that has no doubt happened is allowing access to some control functions via remote login that has allowed some illegitimate access. Once again convenience vs. security bites us.
            And yes, the power companies have to follow certain capital requirements, but that does not mean they can’t spend money on cyber security. They just don’t want to, and they lobby heavily in Congress against any mandates. Our electric grid is enourmously vulnerable, folks. Prep accordingly.
            They do lobby against ”mandates”;but, so do we as individuals. Are you ready to disarm and turn in all your firearms? Are you willing to switch to only wind and solar and toss that wood burner, since it creates CO2 and particulates?
            It’s simply not that simple or black & white as to blame the companies who are highly regulated utility monopolies.
            As for prepping accordingly, we have done that for decades, with most electronics able to run for hours with no power until we got the generators hooked up; but, now running from the whole house auto start genset we can run for months or longer with current fuel and consumable supplies on hand. When everything is full after the summer propane fill, we could easily run for 6 months or more at mostly full power. Our only long term change would be clothes lines instead of the electric clothes dryer and using more wood for supplemental heat to save the propane for the genset.
            This plan will allow us to be mostly unaffected for a year or more; but, has taken 35 years and a bit of cash to get to this point.

            And on the same topic, the book “Lights Out” by Ted Koppel. A straight up, no “fake news” journalist if ever there was one. I fully expect a grid blackout, engineered by the Russians, just ahead of the 2010 election.

            While he may be better than some, I don’t see Ted as that unbiased, since growing up in London during WW II no doubt gives him both bias and perspective although his treatment of the LDS church self reliance seems to be well done and unbiased.

  13. Woot! Woot! I received by black belt Friday after two years of hard work. This is the black belt recommended. I will test for first degree in December. I am so excited.

    I attended a fire arms class at my local academy. I was surprised that I was the only one in the class who had ever fired a gun. One funny question. The instructor handed out magazines for everyone to handle. One of the students asked how a magazine worked. Another student said, “Oh, it’s like a pez dispenser. I thought that was a good analogy.

    I received my medical supplies that I ordered last week. Do I feel like a hoarder? No, put when my husband saw that I ordered 200 roles of gauze and other medical supplies he asked if I was overbuying. I gave him that look.

    Best news of the week: Granddaughter gained 14 ounces since her last doctor’s visit. She was underweight and her long bones were not developing normally. (She was just below the average mark.) Doctors will induce Monday. We have had our entire church and all of our relatives praying for her. She is now 5 lbs. 14 ounces–within the normal range.

      1. Thor,

        Thank you. Now that I have the black belt (recommended) in taekwondo I am going to attend Krav Maga classes. My academy has taekwondo, cardio kick boxing and Krav Maga–all for one price. Senior Master showed us some Krav Maga moves when someone points a gun at you. I was shocked. The firearms instructor (of 20 years), also an advanced Krav Maga student, showed that close up, Krav Maga trumps a gun–both revolver and semi-automatic. These were two very well trained men, one in firearms and the other in Krav Maga, showing the benefits and limitations of their crafts.

        Today I learned that training and practice is all important. There is a kind of gut-reaction (maybe muscle memory) that one needs to develop in order to be successful. The key that both men hit on was “I have made a decision. I am going home tonight. Have you made a decision?” There is a commitment to use of force that has been decided ahead of time–I will kill, if necessary to save my own life and the lives of others.

        I have also decided that I am going to get a laser on my primary self defense weapon. I just haven’t decided whether that is going to be my Glock 19 or my Springfield xd. I need more range time (with instruction) to make that decision.

        1. Bam, I Crave Maga too. Make America Great Again…… LOL

          Lasers have their advantages and disadvantages as well…..

        2. Bam Bam,
          Taking Krav Maga as an adjunct to any martial traing is a benefit, since it gives you options. I have been teaching firearms for about 28 years and learned handgun snatches years before that. Personally I would rather face a gun than a knife at close quarters, since if you can control the muzzle and point it safely, the most damage you can get is a minor burn or cut. A blade however, can be painful or lethal in many more ways than a firearm.

          Today I learned that training and practice is all important. There is a kind of gut-reaction (maybe muscle memory) that one needs to develop in order to be successful.

          Yes and that requires not only commitment; but, practice. The maxim ”Practice makes perfect” is incomplete since only Perfect practice makes perfect” so take the training and practice seriously.
          It’s more than just muscle memory. Its training / tuning your OODA loop. In a sudden crisis, everyone freezes followed by either fight or flight. The choice you make and the time to make it, is defined by that loop, and the kind of practice you have made to train / tune the loop.

          The key that both men hit on was “I have made a decision. I am going home tonight. Have you made a decision?” There is a commitment to use of force that has been decided ahead of time–I will kill, ”if necessary” to save my own life and the lives of others.

          I made that commitment some 40 years ago when deciding to transform from Sheep to Sheepdog; but, for those on the edge, a great resource to bolster your choice is Dave Grossmans Bulletproof your mind seminar. A friend took me to one 25 years ago, and I have since taken two other groups to one. If you can’t get to a live seminar, here’s one that was recorded and is nearly as good.
          Dave Grossman: “Bulletproof Mind”
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8RDCtMEHFLM

          Sheepdog Seminars: Bulletproof Mind & Counter Ambush!
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HkCArVaCvZw

          Here’s a good introductory piece to read first.
          On Sheep, Wolves and Sheepdogs
          https://www.killology.com/sheep-wolves-and-sheepdogs

          I have also decided that I am going to get a laser on my primary self defense weapon. I just haven’t decided whether that is going to be my Glock 19 or my Springfield xd. I need more range time (with instruction) to make that decision.

          I have lasers on both handgun and rifles and while they can be fun, they make you no more accurate than your training and skill allow, and in a clutch situation, with or without a battery failure, they can slow you down.
          It would be better IMHO to learn to use point shoulder (natural point of aim) shooting without engaging the sights, since at most defensive distances (1-7 yards) it’s a quicker way to engage.
          I suspect there are others here that can chime in; but, that is my opinion for the $0.05 it’s worth.

          1. TOP,

            I agree with your opinion on lasers mounted on firearms. I carried rifles, revolvers, pistols, shotguns (and machine and sub-machine guns at times) as part of my occupations from 1971 until 1998. I still carry a handgun all the time, and own a couple of military style rifles (HK-91 and AR-15). I was a police firearms instructor for about ten-years, both in-service and police academy. I was also on a SWAT team for several years. In all those years toting a firearm, I never used a laser except at some firearms instructors conferences, which reinforced my belief that they slowed you down when in close.

            I do have EOTech holographic sights on my two main rifles. But those are primarily longer distance weapons, although I can shoot them quite well at close range without using sights at all. During Marine infantry training, we were taught a technique called “quick kill” which was developed for rapid and accurate return rifle fire in a close ambush situation in Vietnam. I still practice that technique which works either below or above the horizontal plane. Whether it’s up or down, depends on where you concentrate your vision. If above the horizontal, you focus your vision on the top of the target, below the horizontal, you focus on the bottom of the target. Both eyes open. We were taught using BB rifles with no sights and shot at thrown metal disks of varying diameter. Started big and worked down. I think the smallest was about the size of a quarter. The instructors shot and hit even smaller disks to prove it could be done. Quick kill can be learned with some practice, and less than you think too. When we could do it regularly with BB rifles, we went on to using M-16s on pop-up targets at ground level where most close ambushes would come from. Our sights were taped over to prevent us from relying on them. Quick kill was good out to about 10-meters or so.

            Why learn how to shoot above the horizontal when most close ambushes were from ground level? Because some idiots think its a cool idea to hide in trees when they shoot at you. Not so cool when rifles and machine guns tear the trees and idiot apart. Of course, in urban combat, being shot at from upper story windows or roofs is common.

            If you have a rifle and the bad guy is “really” close, nothing like a vertical butt-stroke to distract him. 🙂 My first commander of my old Air Guard unit was the police chief of a small town, so he was a “working chief.” He was armed with an 870 wooden stocked shotgun when he was surprised at very close range by an armed criminal he was looking for. Since he had the shotgun at port arms, John’s first instinct was to butt-stroke the guy. Broke the guy’s neck and the stock of the shotgun. John was a pretty stocky and strong fellow too. John was a combat vet of Vietnam, so he had bayonet training. He was our hero, but the other non-cop Air Guard officers were scared to death of him.

        1. Bam Bam,

          I have walked around for two days saying, “I am a black belt.” It just hasn’t sunk in.

          Are you actually walking on the floor, or floating 6 inches above it? LOL
          From our email correspondences I know you have several degrees and if you are at all like me, you were floating and acting in a similar way for each of those. I’ve done the same when you work hard for something, that during the journey seems an impossibility and when you finally arrive seems like a dream.
          For me the next thing was always planning the next thing. For you it appears to be Krav Maga.

    1. Black Belt Bam Bam,

      Woot! Woot! I received by black belt Friday after two years of hard work. This is the black belt recommended. I will test for first degree in December. I am so excited.

      In my style black belt in 2 years was unheard of; but, good luck on your test in any case.

      I attended a fire arms class at my local academy. I was surprised that I was the only one in the class who had ever fired a gun. One funny question. The instructor handed out magazines for everyone to handle. One of the students asked how a magazine worked. Another student said, “Oh, it’s like a pez dispenser. I thought that was a good analogy.

      That is a great analogy and one I have been using for most of 30 years in my classes. I of course have an original ”Yosemite Sam” PEZ dispenser for the class, since nothing else will do. LOL.

        1. Bam Bam,

          The black belt is only the beginning of training. There are 9 degrees of black belt.

          It’s the same in my style also; but, I like your attitude. I suspect eventually you’ll reach the point that the new degree isn’t as important as the incredible things you will be able to do, often without thinking.
          That is when you realize that you have ”Arrived!!

    2. Bam, congrats on the Black Belt, as well as the the great news on the grand! Keeping y’all in our prayers!

    3. BamBam
      You did awesome on getting your black belt. Congratulations on this achievement, know you worked hard to get there.

      Sending our blesssing on the granddaughter.

  14. Oh, no. I posted as “Black Belt Bam Bam” and got stuck in moderation.

    Woot! Woot! I received by black belt Friday after two years of hard work. This is the black belt recommended. I will test for first degree in December. I am so excited.

    I attended a fire arms class at my local academy. I was surprised that I was the only one in the class who had ever fired a gun. One funny question. The instructor handed out magazines for everyone to handle. One of the students asked how a magazine worked. Another student said, “Oh, it’s like a pez dispenser. I thought that was a good analogy.

    I received my medical supplies that I ordered last week. Do I feel like a hoarder? No, put when my husband saw that I ordered 200 roles of gauze and other medical supplies he asked if I was overbuying. I gave him that look.

    Best news of the week: Granddaughter gained 14 ounces since her last doctor’s visit. She was underweight and her long bones were not developing normally. (She was just below the average mark.) Doctors will induce Monday. We have had our entire church and all of our relatives praying for her. She is now 5 lbs. 14 ounces–within the normal range.

      1. I am kind of feeling like a bad ass–but a new-bee bad ass who can get her butt kicked by so many black belts. LOL In my academy, they say that the training only now gets started.

        1. Bam Bam,

          I am kind of feeling like a bad ass–but a new-bee bad ass who can get her butt kicked by so many black belts. LOL In my academy, they say that the training only now gets started.

          I’ve been there and they are right; but, then again, isn’t life just one long training session?
          Also, be aware that not only can your other black belts kick your butt, there are many street fighters who can probably do the same, especially with dirty tricks, weapons, and no referees.
          Your best defense is still situational awareness and avoiding trouble whenever possible. Fighting, whether hand to hand or with a weapon of some type, should always be your last & least favorable option.

    1. BBBB,

      Congrats on the Black Belt. Promise not to beat me up if we ever meet 🙂

      I’m so happy to hear your granddaughter to be is doing well. I hope everything comes out OK (sort of a joke, but also a serious desire). I’m so happy with my granddaughter and I also hope you can enjoy yours as much, or even more if possible.

  15. Hi all, I have been commenting on comments as I read along, so here are my answers to Tara’s questions:

    1) No poultry here yet, but boy they look so cute at TSC! As I’ve been there several times in the past few weeks, I’ve noticed that some are not looking so well lately. Even tho I’ve never raised poultry, I have learned enough to know not to buy the ones who aren’t doing so well. Don’t know what it is, but I am assuming that it’s the environment they are living in. It was one tub in particular, don’t recall the breed, but the other tubs were much more full of ‘life’. If I worked at TSC, I’d remove those birds from the area in case they had Applicable to wilderness type situations as well as ‘city’ life. Second would be water awareness/safety. Babies can be taught to swim. Third would be awareness of weapons/ comfort level. I am a cop’s daughter, guns were always in the house, I knew where they were, even knew where the keys to the locks were. NEVER had the desire to try them out. Yes I looked at them. To me, they were a tool to do a job, one that I had no need for at the time (our family did not hunt). And when I got older, I did ask my Dad to teach me to shoot, but he never did. I did that on my own as an adult. I wish my Dad HAD been the one to introduce me to guns. It could have been a bonding experience for us (not that Daddy’s princess needed another bonding experienc LOL) (Instead, we bonded with my helping him catalog photos and stuff during different investigations he was involved with when I was older…things no preteen/teen should have seen, LOL, Mafia bombings (Danny Greene anyone?) Reminds me of a funny story, Dad put away a couple of high level Hells Angels, and I went to work at a reputable place where a coworker was a known member of the Angels. I knew it before Dad did. It kinda scared me. He seemed a nice enough guy, but I was worried he might make the connction. We never had any issues, Dad assured me I would be fine. Dude ended up in prison for murder several years later. Wow, talk about a walk down memory lane (this was when I was in my twenties) not to mention going way off topic…

    4) WDIDTPTW:
    Not a whole lot. I got more potting soil to transplant my tomatoes and such. I started seeds this year in Burpees organic potting soil, and they are not doing as well as last year when I used MiracleGrow. So I got a bag of Miracle Grow to transplant them into. Hopefully that will help strengthen them before hardening off. I did plant the sugar snaps I started. I planted a couple of seed alongside the starts to try to get a couple harvests. Scattered some marigold seeds along the perimeter of the garden as well. I also scattered some in a planter on the patio, those actually are showing some growth that I didn’t expect. *hanging my head* I have not yet made it back to the garden to check on the peas. It’s supposed to get cold tonight, but peas should be able to handle it. I bought a couple tomato cages, my goal is to buy a couple each week, to see what works best. The ones I bought this week are square. I’m not buying the cheap ‘regular’ ones. Their are thicker coated wire ‘cone’ shaped ones that are next weeks purchase. I am not waiting until the last minute this year. Last year, all I could get were ‘rods’ to tie the maters to. But I am reusing them to train the peas up so not a total loss.

    While I have been relegated back to ‘closing shift’ at work, I completed my ‘successor planning’ and it looks good that I will be getting the promotion I was looking for….bad news is, it won’t be happening anytime soon…so in the meantime I will continue to bitch about being stuck on closing shift, fight to get back on my old shift, and probably get nowhere…

    I do have a question for y’all. We use the Seresto collar for the beagle (the fleas are THAT bad in our area and resistant to so many things). But ear mites…I have been cleaning the beagle’s ears with ACV on a regular basis, he comes running when I pull the ACV out, believe it or not! But he has a raw spot in one ear. I’m wondering what I could use to treat the raw spot that would not encourage mite growth? Coconut oil maybe? I’m also wondering if I am not pushing ear wax further down his ear canals. Perhaps I should be flushing his ears with ACV instead? He has selective hearing, as most males do LOL, but as an old man, his hearing isn’t what it used to be. Just tonight he started licking the cotton balls, so that tells me I need to go back to adding ACV to his water…

    1. Wow, it looks like a whole chunk of my comment got gobbled up somehow. As much as I hate the extra work, guess I need to do like TOP and have a word doc to copy and paste…
      What got messed up was my reply to what would you teach kids early on..first and foremost is knowing where you are/situaltional awareness as well as opsec.

      1. Grammyprepper,

        Wow, it looks like a whole chunk of my comment got gobbled up somehow. As much as I hate the extra work, guess I need to do like TOP and have a word doc to copy and paste

        I’ve been posting on these kinds of forums for more than 20 years and have had pieces of my work disappear more than a few times. Select the wrong text and accidently hit the Del or Enter, and then say some bad word. LOL.
        Using a word processor, even an accidental screw up can usually be recovered with Ctrl-Z.
        I don’t work with a tablet or phone; but, on a computer, you can have multiple things running and easily switch between them, so it’s not really any extra work. You type into the word processor, check for errors, then hit Ctrl-A to select everything and then Ctrl-C to copy. Select the text box for the comment and hit Ctrl-V and you’re done and ready to sibmit.
        Often on my long responses I need to think things through or do some research for details, or simply need a break and allowing the text to comfortably sit in the word processor works well.
        For my WIDTPTW I have a separate document that I pull up and edit during the week as things progress. Before I post I read Tara’s preps and comment accordingly, then copy paste and go on. I also keep backup versions so I can currently go back 106 weeks if I need to ”remember” something.

        What got messed up was my reply to what would you teach kids early on..first and foremost is knowing where you are/situaltional awareness as well as opsec.

        I think this is another good starting point for kids and had you used the word processor, it would have caught ”situaltional awareness” as <strong<”situational awareness” if that matters to you. LOL.

    1. Thor1,

      Up date about food prices and

      Nothing new here, which is why we have food purchased ahead of time, and increase our food budget each year. We’re still sitting on nearly 300 pounds of beef and we can do without avocados and oranges if the get too pricy.

      The second video about planning for an asteroid strike doesn’t surprise me at all, since it’s just a tabletop skull session like ones we have all of the time.
      Recently we had one on pandemic and bio weapon attack as well as an active shooter drill for the county office building, with live fire (blanks). We hold these tabletop sessions all of the time for different potential events, bringing in different stakeholders, all of whom have their own perspective. Each time we usually tweak the plan being discussed.

      Has anyone also noticed uel prices going up?

      I assume you meant ”fuel” and that’s not a mystery, with crude now sitting @ $63.30 up from the low 50’s not long ago. Add that to the lack of transport from the Obama era pipeline collusion (LOL) and this is what we get. It’s painful; but, not mysterious.

  16. WOW, late again lol it’s Sunday morning finally the sun is out over the PNW. I did my rotation from pantry to my Lazy Susan, I have a small list of foods I need to pick up I’m doing a good job on our needs and wants. Bought some paint and am redoing our side of the fence white it of course matches what my neighbor painted a few year’s ago I feel like Huck Fin 🙂 . I’m still trying to find a good food for the picky pussycat, she is just awful finding a soft food she won’t stick her nose up to bad kitty :(. We spent yesterday later afternoon working on our property, I need to get another gas can to keep extra gas for the lawn mower, put out the recycling yard waste can. Hubby really likes his new rechargeable lighter, glad I found it for him I don’t want it getting lost so I made him put it back in the box… Safeway, is having a sale on water, so I need to get a few more cases, I want to have it in travel trailer, plus in hubby’s van, he’s been working on the Islands, so it’s good to have extras in case the ferry’s are late, or don’t run. Both He and I with heavy hearts released ourselves as Power of Attorney, over his mother, as she nor do we have the money to put her in a lock down facility, I can’t wrap my head around how expensive they are. The state will take her bank accounts over and get her SS check, each month. Some friends, are still upset with us for not dragging her to Washington State, it would have never worked out and plus she’s California born and raised that’s why she went back it’s just to cold and rainy for her. We’ll, I know today I’m getting out in the yard and getting plants planted and I can enjoy the rest of April… Have a great week.
    Questions 1. No bird experience
    Question 2 Kid’s know how to cook, and pick Berry’s, plant herbs,
    Question 3 The kid’s are close to home, and have a key, if phones don’t go down we can communicate, but they know to go home and lock the door and be quite. Hubby, can go just about anywhere, he know people. Me I can walk just about anywhere, if vehicles don’t run and have several ways to get home on foot and by car…Great questions this week makes you think!!!

    1. I know it won’t change the way you feel, but try not to worry about what others think about you. Your decision with your MIL was yours to make, and it sounds like you made the right one. Praying for you and your family.

    2. mom of three,

      I did my rotation from pantry to my Lazy Susan

      We still use a Lazy Susan for the spices in the cupboard; but, purchased some Cansolidators from a Thrive Life sale and think these are one of the best things going for can storage & management.

      Bought some paint and am redoing our side of the fence white it of course matches what my neighbor painted a few year’s ago I feel like Huck Fin.

      So your neighbor I assume is Tom Sawyer? LOL

      We spent yesterday later afternoon working on our property, I need to get another gas can to keep extra gas for the lawn mower

      We have 2, 5-gallon jerry cans that we fill and transfer to the 2 gallon cans for distribution. We also have a 125 gallon elevated tank with a hose and nozzle; but, with the current price of gas, and the rate we use it in equipment other than the vehicles, we haven’t filled it in years. If we end up with a new Kubota tractor, we may use if for diesel if it will work for that fuel.

      Hubby really likes his new rechargeable lighter, glad I found it for him I don’t want it getting lost so I made him put it back in the box

      I have four of these and really like them. Two look like long (9 inch) kitchen matches that we use for lighting pilot lights on the water heater, oven, etc.
      One is a cylinder with a safety interlock and the plasma arc on one end, and the other looks like an oversized Zippo lighter. Our new vehicle has built in USB charging ports and the old one has the cigarette lighter to USB ports, so along with phones & GPS, we can keep these charged when on the go; however, since I keep them plugged into one of the chargers when home and not in use, they have never failed to operate. Instead of keeping it in the box, we keep ours plugged into one of the multiport USB chargers along with other USB devices, batteries, and radios.

      Safeway, is having a sale on water, so I need to get a few more cases, I want to have it in travel trailer, plus in hubby’s van, he’s been working on the Islands, so it’s good to have extras in case the ferry’s are late, or don’t run

      We get the 24 bottle , 20 oz at Aldi’s for $2.79 regular price. What is your sale price?

      Unfortunately for his mother, that’s the state of things if you haven’t planned for it. My MIL paid a fortune ($2000.00) per year) for nursing home insurance she ended up never using. Eldercare isn’t cheap, and now that I’m an elder, I often wonder about it.

      We’ll, I know today I’m getting out in the yard and getting plants planted and I can enjoy the rest of April

      Our last frost date is May 15 so we still have a little time; but, April (or the rest of it) is gone in 2 more days.

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