What I Did to Prep This Week

What I Did To Prep This Week – Week 42: Apr 28th – May 4th 2019

two newborn ducklings

Hello Pack. It has been a fun on the farm kind of week. Growing and raising food has been nearly the sole focus of our tribe. The baby animals just seem to keep on coming on a daily basis.

We helped a tribe member with his calving, ever momma and baby are doing quite well. The Buckeye chicken population in the United States has increased by at least seven this week, thanks to our fairly successful attempts at incubating.

Even though my flock still refuses to spread their wings and fly up into the nice nesting boxes I provided for them, one is now setting a clutch of eggs on the coop floor.

The ducklings keep arriving as well. We had two new one born this week with several more egg that show signs of new arrivals looming.

The first round of ducklings and the guineas my beloved surprised me with are growing quickly as well . I have never had keets with such a voracious appetite before nor such a steady growth rate. Baby guineas are such fragile things. It is not unusual for them to accidentally squish each-other when the get into a “cuddle puddle” at night.

baby guineas

Guinea #7, as I call it, is a slight bit confused – it thinks it is a duck. When the ducklings cuddle up at night, they get into a semi-circle and use each other’s rump as a pillow. Guinea #7 is always included in the bedtime gathering and offers his rear end as a pillow, as well. I have tried several times to get a cute photo of the duckling and guinea sleepover, but when I raise my phone to snap a photo they all scatter.

If you have never baked with duck eggs, you should start. They make bread, biscuit, cake, or pie taste so much richer, creamier, and delicious. Because duck eggs are larger than chicken eggs, you must make some slight adjustments in your recipe.

I have never eaten guinea eggs or meat, but people do, and often refer to them as a “poor man’s pheasant.” We keep guineas solely to protect our meat and egg birds. They are also a great no-tech surveillance system on your prepper retreat. The birds will launch into shrieking whenever some animal or human they perceive as not belonging, gets near their home base.

Our dwarf banana trees are thriving, and so is the dwarf Moringa trees. They are spindly at the moment, but are popping back up after recovering from an intense growth spurt, and a lack of light after several days of clouds and rain.

plants in containers growing indoors under a growlight

The last of our duck and chicken eggs are in the incubator on the table, awaiting their introduction into the big wild world.

We got in a little bit of target practice this week both with rifles and compound bows. Work on enlarging our pond continues. That project keeps getting stalled when equipment or vehicles need worked on – which seems neverending.

Soon it will be time to bale the first round of hay, everything comes to a halt during baling time unless it is an animal birth or emergency.

I know a lot of the Pack are animal lovers in general, so here is just a photo for fun to bring a smile to your faces this week. Sadie and my horse Ruby are lined up at the “treat window” AKA bathroom window – with the rest of the herd not far behind.

I think they have synced with my alarm clock and meet me there nearly every morning. I think Sadie must have dropped a few crumbs on her face and being an awesome horse, Ruby offered to clean them up for her.

horse and donkey

This Week’s Questions

  1. How have you increased your food stockpiles this week?
  2. What type of no, low, or high tech surveillance systems do you use or want to use on your prepper retreat?
  3. What poultry keeping tips do you have to share or questions would you like answered from our online survival community?
  4. What did you 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 →

114 thoughts on “What I Did To Prep This Week – Week 42: Apr 28th – May 4th 2019

  1. Hello Pack,

    This week, weather wise, has been a little on the warm side. Today storms supposed to happen. Still waiting for them to arrive. Hot and humid is the word for day.

    FB MP – Found some Coleman lanterns, along with a Coleman stove, so should be in good shape with those, except of course the mantles. Need some more of those. Found a down blanket that’s now in my possession. I think I have enough of those too now.

    Goodwill, found a nice hotel, cotton, VERY soft blanket, a tea strainer, Tupperware colander, de-icer spray, stove top cleaner, a mi-century Lane end table that I am going to resell.

    Dollar General – Bought 3 of those air pistols that Tara mentioned. Will use one for barter day that’s coming up in June. Need some ammo to go with it.

    Put down some cinder blocks to step up into the shed until I can get the ramp built.

    Working in the garage today, defrosting the older freezer.

    Tara’s questions:

    How have you increased your food stockpiles this week? Bought some more Knorr’s pasta. Not much else

    What type of no, low, or high tech surveillance systems do you use or want to use on your prepper retreat? Have none, solar powered would be best. There are a few neighborhood dogs roaming around that would set them off, so not sure this is practical for me.

    What poultry keeping tips do you have to share or questions would you like answered from our online survival community? I have no poultry, so have nothing to share except that unwashed eggs will last a really long time unrefrigerated. I’ve used some that were 5 months old. I’ve used some that were 8 months old as a test, that I did refrigerate, and I’m still here.

    Prayers for the pack, unspoken requests, for The President and for America.

    Heading down to TX for my nephew’s graduation on Friday. We are very proud of him for what he has overcome in life. His mom is crazy, and he has had 2 TBI’s while in Afghanistan. Doing exceptionally well.

    Have a great week everyone.

      1. AT, yep had to run him before the rain came in…..LOL

        I’ll blame him because he can’t say no yet….but he can say Mommy and Daddy….LOL

          1. Almost There to Thor1,

            Puppy has you trained well… Lol

            I had always heard that “Dogs have owners & Cats have staff.” .
            Are you sure puppy isn’t part cat? LOL

    1. Almost There,

      FB MP – Found some Coleman lanterns, along with a Coleman stove, so should be in good shape with those, except of course the mantles. Need some more of those. Found a down blanket that’s now in my possession. I think I have enough of those too now.

      The Coleman mantles are easy to find @ around $3.00 each. It’s the Aladdin mantles that were hard to find and when you do, they’re around $13-15 each.

      Dollar General – Bought 3 of those air pistols that Tara mentioned. Will use one for barter day that’s coming up in June. Need some ammo to go with it.

      I bought one of those last week and it comes with 70 rounds of ammo. The little jar of 1000 was only $5.00.

      I have no poultry, so have nothing to share except that unwashed eggs will last a really long time unrefrigerated. I’ve used some that were 5 months old. I’ve used some that were 8 months old as a test, that I did refrigerate, and I’m still here.

      We always wash ours since the girls won’t use the nest boxes and lay eggs in the scat. We refrigerate; but, a light coating of mineral oil on the wash dry egg works as well as the unwashed egg.

        1. Overwatch,

          Aladdin supplies? Go to Ready Made Resources.

          I know they have them; but, we can get them kind of locally from Lehman’s non electric north west of us in Amish country.
          I’ve been using those lamps since the 1970’s and still have mantles on hand; but, they were scarce for a while since as I understand it, the thorium oxide and cerium oxide used in the manufacture were hard to find or at least kept scarce since they are mildly radioactive compounds.
          Sometimes just the word ”radioactive” makes people run for cover.

      1. TOP,

        I didn’t know that Aladdin made lamps to camp with.

        The DG I went to didn’t even know about the pistols. We finally found them high up on the top shelf. Kids aren’t allowed to buy them, and there were no jars of ammo to be found. Will have to check another one.

        1. Almost There,

          I didn’t know that Aladdin made lamps to camp with.

          I don’t know that they are quite as rugged as Coleman for camping; but, these lamps are a very old design. Back in the early 1970’s I went out to an Amish farm near here to purchased some peaches and apples; but, when I got there it was getting dark. The guy told me to head into the barn where his girls were sorting the last batch, and when I walked in I was amazed at how brilliant the place was lit. Sitting around were 4 or 5 of these lamps that do not take special fuel, burning lamp oil (paraffin oil) or kerosene and are also not required to be pressurized for operation.

          I purchased several of them the following payday.

          Here is an example: Aluminum Lamp (Nickel Burner)
          https://www.lehmans.com/product/8554/table-lamps?utm_term=100008188&zmam=32933335&zmas=1&zmac=1&zmap=100008188&gclid=EAIaIQobChMIv9-Nv5mF4gIVgYbACh2MYgBvEAQYAyABEgKtAfD_BwE

          The DG I went to didn’t even know about the pistols. We finally found them high up on the top shelf. Kids aren’t allowed to buy them, and there were no jars of ammo to be found. Will have to check another one.

          It was similar here. We had to ask and the clerk found them on a shelf back behind the register along with the jars of ammunition. The jar (plastic bottle) have a funnel on the lid and hold 1000 6mm plastic BB’s for $5.00 (plus tax of course)

  2. (1) I increased my food stockpile by canning green beans from the garden this week and by dehydrating pineapple chunks for a sweet and healthy treat that keeps quite a long time sealed in mason jars. Last night I also canned about 50 pureed bananas from my plants for later use in smoothies and baking. It’s that time of year for me where I will be canning something every week for a couple of months at least.
    (2) We rely on our livestock guardian dogs to alert us of any unwanted guests. We also have an electric gate at our entrance and canals all around our acreage that prevents anyone from driving onto our property.
    (3) I’ve kept poultry most of my adult life so it’s not an issue for me. Yard birds are a way of life!
    (4) I ordered 3 pairs of shoes on line this week…2 pairs from OrthoFeet, one other pair of cross-trainers for my exercising. Gotta take care of my tootsies! Also reorganized my deep pantry of home-canned items this week to get a handle on how much I’ve got on hand. Hundreds of jars of everything from soups and stews to jams, pickles, meats, fruit…..very reassuring to know how to grow and preserve so much food. Finally, we are making great progress on our BOL. Hubby just got back from working up there for a few days and I’ve been working on sewing curtains for the place. We estimate 6 more weeks before it’s finished. Can’t wait as it will become our weekend retreat during good times, and a great escape location if needed. That’s it for me this week!

    1. What brand(s) of shoes do you wear? Good, comfortable shoes is an area where I don’t mind spending a little more.

      1. Prepared Grammy,

        What brand(s) of shoes do you wear? Good, comfortable shoes is an area where I don’t mind spending a little more.

        I am obviously not Goatlover; but, since I have small feet with a high instep I have always had trouble finding shoes in my size that fit. I have had numerous expensive shoes and several orthotics over the years; but, recently found an in expensive pair of shoes @ Wal-Mart that have been some of the best I’ve ever had.
        They were made by Dr. Scholls and only ran about $25.00 a pair. The only thing I had to change was to add some longer shoe strings.

        1. TOP, Prepared Grammy, Goatlover,

          I generally wear inexpensive walking shoes on an everyday basis. My feet are normal in configuration, although in size 12W.

          When boots are necessary, I wear Danner brand boots. Specifically their Acadia model. I’ve worn those since the 1980s, both in the military (my Guard unit was flexible about boots we wore), police work, and Scouting. The reason I do that is my feet do have a problem, terminal athletes foot, a gift that keeps on giving from Vietnam (along with Agent Orange related issues).

          I cannot afford blisters as they will get infected with the athletes foot fungus and I will have all kinds of problems. I’d rather the lymph glands in my groin not grow to baseball size again. The Danner’s break-in very easily and the Acadia has Gortex lining that helps keep my feet dry. Yes, they are expensive, but you get what you pay for.

          I can keep the athletes foot mostly under control using Tea Tree Oil mixed in coconut oil. Best I’ve found so far. But, it never fully goes away regardless of treatment modality.

          1. Zulu 3-6,

            I generally wear inexpensive walking shoes on an everyday basis. My feet are normal in configuration, although in size 12W.

            Unfortunately mine are half of that, barely hitting a 6; but, more comfortable in a 5 ½ when I can find them. I’ve also been known to wear a women’s size 7 (unisex) or sometimes a European oddball size. I basically just try them on and if they fit and are comfortable, ignore the size.

            When boots are necessary, I wear Danner brand boots. Specifically their Acadia model.

            I’ve heard good things about these; but, in the past couldn’t find any small enough. My last good pair was from Rocky Boots, purchased from their outlet store in Nelsonville Ohio some 100 miles and 2 hours south of me; but, that once proud American company closed its Nelsonville factory and now sells foreign made boots. They are still a pretty good boot; but, no longer made here in Ohio.

            The Danner’s break-in very easily and the Acadia has Gortex lining that helps keep my feet dry. Yes, they are expensive, but you get what you pay for.

            I’ll check and see if I can find someplace locally that carries them, since I never purchase boots and shoes other than in npperson. Pretty much the same for clothing also, unless it’s a copy of something I already own and know the details.

            I can keep the athletes foot mostly under control using Tea Tree Oil mixed in coconut oil. Best I’ve found so far. But, it never fully goes away regardless of treatment modality.

            While I’ve never had that foot problem as bad as you, have you tried Absorbine or Absorbine Jr. It’s basically a horse liniment and always kicked any minor foot fungus I had. It does sting when being applied.

          2. TOP,

            I order all of my Danner’s direct from the company. I had to send the first pair back as they didn’t quite fit, but the second pair was perfect. I always ordered the exact same size afterward and never had an issue. The soles were replaceable, so I didn’t always have to buy a whole new pair, but the Gortex sock eventually gave it up. I destroyed a pair in just six months during Desert Storm. The sand gave them a beating. Normally a pair was good for about five years, with sole replacements. Remember, I wore them all of the time too.

            I’ll have to give that Absorbine a try. I’m always on the lookout for the miracle cure.

          3. When I was fifteen I got a major case of jock itch from the lake at a youth camp. For fifteen years I was miserable and tried all those remedies. Finally my wife’s stepfather gave me some pills he got from his doctor. I only wish I had kept the bottle, I took half of them at the prescribed rate and it went away for a year. When it came back I took the rest of the bottle at one time. Thirty-three years later it hasn’t come back. What I am saying there is a cure but has to be from the inside. A fungus is hard to kill.

          4. Zulu, i have a low but definite arch… Best shoes i have ever had.. Hands down REDWING, mens.. I have a very big foot for a lady, wear a 10 1/2 in mens…I added a pair of the gel insoles…do to all my shoes. Getting 2 or three of those and swapping out daily, in rotation. treat shoes each time you remove them…
            Soaking feet in weak bleach water, rinsing , drying then repeating process with epsom salts water..( follow package instructions..) but a 30 min soak… I would try oil of oregano..both internal and external . I would swap up my routine. On week one i would do as above. on week two change to baking soda for a soak. and on week two use a different antifungal…UNTIL you can get some vft-100 ( 50 drop dose daily.btw, non toxic)and some lomatium (LDM) which barlow herbals makes. is available on internet now. start slowly… both of these are used under the tongue. dose is very small so small bottle of each will be sufficient.. with LDM can get healing rash, so start it every third for 7 doses then increase to every other day. ( this is one dose a day) dose is like 50 drops/after third week try every day… ..each person is different, in amount of yeast they have in their body… this will take care of it.. will have to get the boots treated to keep from reinfecting from them….http://choosecra.com/store/supplements/vft-100.html here is the link for ldm same company. I would call and order.. so can get both… same order. http://www.choosecra.com/store/immune/ldm-100.html

          5. AA,

            The one time my groin lymph nodes really got swollen, I had blisters from wearing (the then newer versions) of GI issue jungle boots. To add to the problem, I was out stomping around in a swamp in northeastern Michigan (around Alpena for those that care). It took a couple of days, but boy things really flared up.

            After visiting the ER, I got a scrip for the infection and went to a pharmacy. The pharmacist took one look at the medication and asked if I had been to Vietnam and had athletes foot? All true. Turns out he’d been a Marine grunt in Vietnam and personally knew exactly what I was going through. He also recommended bleach water soaks, which helped a lot.

            My mom also had big feet for a woman. Also, very narrow to boot. She had nightmares trying to find shoes that fit. I remember very well walking all around downtown Detroit with her looking for shoes. That was back in the early/mid 60s so it was pretty safe to do that then. As time went on, things became a little easier for her to find shoes that fit. Still a pain in the backside, but not as bad as it was for her.

        2. I wore Dr, Scholls back in the day when they made the wooden soled sandals (don’t bother now, they are plastic). I also wore Dr. Scholls clogs throughout my nursing career. It is SO hard to find shoes with an actual instep anymore. Even the FILA slip resistant shoes I recently bought for work needed an OTC insert. I’ve not researched it, but are there more flat footed ppl these days, it seems most shoes are made that way any more.

          1. Grammyprepper,

            I wore Dr, Scholls back in the day when they made the wooden soled sandals (don’t bother now, they are plastic). I also wore Dr. Scholls clogs throughout my nursing career.

            These Dr. Scholls I’m now wearing are leather and plastic; but, are better than any of the much more expensive ($80-125) shoes I’ve tried over the years, all of which needed OTC insoles, some of which were very expensive.

            It is SO hard to find shoes with an actual instep anymore. Even the FILA slip resistant shoes I recently bought for work needed an OTC insert. I’ve not researched it, but are there more flat footed ppl these days, it seems most shoes are made that way anymore.

            I don’t know about the flat footed people; but, perhaps it’s a ”Generic” thing as a base for any foot with the correct insole. I suspect that there are a lot of obese people whose arches have flattened out to need these shoes. I mean no disrespect to these people; but, based on TV & radio commercials for various weight loss products, orthotics, and pain relief products this is evidently a real demographic and market.
            I generally run around in flip flops that start out flat, but, over time turn into a perfect fit for my feet. As we hit summer these should be available once again, since I usually get a few new pairs to have on hand.
            As I type this it looks to be a near perfect day, with no rain and a high of 75°.

        1. Bam Bam,

          I have worn Saucony trail running shoes for years. If you wait until Amazon Prime Day, you can pick up running shoes for half price.

          I’ll have to check out the brand if I can find it locally, just for fit.
          Thanks for the tip about Prime day.

          My dh wears New Balance 506. I have to order online because he is 12 4E. I can usually pick these up for under $25 on Prime Day.

          I’ve worn New Balance but the ones that fit me had that roll bar in them that hurt my feet. I think they ran about $85.00 when I was wearing them, so this needs to be something to keep in mind.

          Your links BTW list the product as Currently unavailable..

          1. My problem is my right foot is half a size larger than my left. Either my right foot gets squashed into a small boot or my left foot rattles around in a too loose boot (very bad for my large toe nail. I have considered trying on two different pairs and slipping the mismatched ones back into one box. Seriously, I do need to do something. A well made pair of good fitting boots will last me the rest of my natural working life. they would be a good prep.

          2. O.P.,

            You (and your spouse) can apply for an Amazon Prime Credit Card on Prime Day. They give you $75 in store credit per card. That’s $150 in free cash.

          3. Daddio,

            Check out Woot! You can find boots half priced. My brother wears the Bates zipper boots. They will have those on occasion.

          4. Bam Bam,

            You (and your spouse) can apply for an Amazon Prime Credit Card on Prime Day. They give you $75 in store credit per card. That’s $150 in free cash.

            I know and they make an offer every time I check out for a $70.00 discount if I apply for their card.
            So far, we really haven’t needed the money enough to balance another card or two; but, it’s always an option if we get tight and really need something big.

          5. Bam Bam,

            Check out Woot! You can find boots half priced. My brother wears the Bates zipper boots. They will have those on occasion.

            Woot & I are on a first name basis and I spend quite a lot on their discounted items from their Daily Digest email.
            Since they are now an Amazon company, Prime members can log in with their Amazon credentials and get free shipping. I think I nearly pay for the whole cost of Prime with just the shipping I save.

          6. Daddio7,

            Can you search on WOOT? All I found under men’s shoes was one sold out pair.

            You can search; but, they tend to be more like an online version of Big Lots or Ollie’s Outlet, with special deals, overstock, etc.
            Their daily digest has really great deals; but, they don’t always have everything you might want, and good deals sell out quickly.
            The discounts they have on those deals are amazing; but, it’s a catch as catch can, so best to subscribe.

      2. PG,

        I wore Saucony for years, and discovered they were making me walk on the outside of my foot instead of flat. If you put the shoe on a flat surface, and look at the angle of the molded portion of the sole where it attaches to the shoe, to see if it is flat, then you can tell what shoes are flat. My chiropractor showed me that trick… Sure enough, all my Saucony’s were like that. I’ve since switched to the thicker soled Skechers D’Lites and I really like them. Another pair I just LOVE are my Merrel’s.

        I’m like TOP, and have to try on my clothes and shoes before I buy them. Then once I know what I can wear, I may check out online.

        1. Almost There,

          That’s why I switched to Saucony–because of my pronation issue. The best advise I have is to go barefoot, dip your feet in water and then step on a paper towel. Look to see how your feet land. You need to determine if you pronate or over pronate. Then order shoes for your type. I totally suggest that folks go to a good running store just once to get tested. Once you find a good fit, you can order online.

          1. My chiropractor plays soccer, and I would have never known why my feet were hurting until he showed me with my shoes and then he showed me his shoes and what to look for. I also have high arches, and have had both feet operated on for plantar faciitis… Personally, I don’t think I have the expertise to self diagnose what type a shoe I need by stepping on a paper towel with wet feet. I have trained my muscles to be a certain way by wearing the Saucony, that’s not natural for me and it needed to be corrected.

            Went 10 years before I got them operated on as I tried everything except the cortisone shots. My foot doctor told me he would have never given me the shot as painful as my feet were. I got immediate relief when he did the first one, waking up out of anesthesia… That was in 2004 and 2009. I think now my problem is heel spurs AND I need to stretch my calves more. My chiropractor told me to hang my heel off a step for 3 minutes on each foot, barefooted so my calf can get a good stretch. It does really help when I do that. I need to have them checked since it’s been a long time. If there are spurs, there is something I want to try that will get rid of those and it’s non-invasive called Cyroultrasound. Someone at work had Cyroultrasound done 20 years ago and the spurs never grew back. It’s worth checking into for me.

            Dr Axe has a good article on heel spurs. https://draxe.com/heel-spur/

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

    Ordered and received some USGS topographical map sheets of the Orlando area. They’re the standard 1:24,000 scale maps sold to civilians. Darned if I know why they don’t just sell 1:25,000 maps like the military has and 1:50,000 maps too. I guess they don’t expect civilians will be calling in artillery and mortar fires. Well, 1:50,000 scale maps are the primary tactical level maps anyway, but still, I’d like to have them as I am most familiar with them. I do have some 1:50,000 maps from my time in the military of various places I’ve been, both foreign and domestic. The USGS web site has historical map sheets of the same area around Orlando and were very interesting to look at and see how the area has developed since the earliest maps in 1956. No interstate freeways back then. Actual printed 1:24,000 map sheets cost $15 each, but you can download PDF copies for free (then tape all the 8×11 pages together). I bucked up and bought the printed maps.

    I also ordered and received plastic map protractors that can be used with 1:24,000 scale maps as well as the military standard scales. Makes map reading and plotting easier. A little tip there from your Sergeant Zulu 😊

    I still have a couple of my old military issue protractors, but those aren’t graduated for 1:24,000 scale, though with a little fudging on the 1:25,000 scales, you could use them. Since you (probably) won’t be calling for supporting fires, a tiny bit of inaccuracy is no big deal. Still, why fudge when you can use the right tool? Get the improved protractors by MapTools (through Amazon). Much better than the USGI. Thicker plastic and rounded corners. Plus, the additional scales. A GI protractor only has scales for the 1:25,000 and 1:50,000. But if you expect to call and control artillery fires, you might still want the USGI protractors as they also have mils in addition to degrees. 🙂

    Also ordered some waterproof map covers. They seem a bit expensive for what they are, but better to keep your maps and plots dry. You can always use alcohol pens to write on the protective plastic, but it’s better to get your map sheets laminated instead if you plan to do that, then stick them inside the map protector.
    I bought the battery tester Almost There suggested and TOP endorsed after some electronics research. Thanks to both. It seems to work much better than the cheapo I bought last week.

    I also bought and received two more NAR CAT-T tourniquets. I have a couple of counterfeit CATs that need to go bye-bye, or maybe I can use them for training. Certainly not for the real deal. Also picked up a couple of large lockable carabiners, one for my BOB and one for my tac vest. Good for attaching gloves when not in use.

    Bought an AR-15 parts kit from Cheaper Than Dirt, just-in-case. I also decided I should get an AR-15 repair guide as I haven’t taken an AR lower receiver apart in years, and then it was on military M-16s which have a couple of extra parts the AR does not (rather, should not). It was a no-no for a non-military armorer to do that, although in my Guard unit, we did it frequently. Pooh-pooh on dumb old rules. Our armorer did double check the assembly on turn-in to make certain we did it right. Knowing how to do that came in handy a couple of times during Desert Storm when sand storms clogged up the weapons.

    Granddaughter is still on vacay with dad (primarily) and mom (to a limited extent as her Air Force thing is keeping her busy). She has picked up a bit of a tan as dad takes her to the beach every day. My little Florida girl. The other day she made sand castles on her own, today she made “sand pies.” Her dad sent me a video of her playing air guitar to Rush’s “Limelight.” Alex Lifeson would be so honored. 😊 I’m ready to see her on Monday.

    Tara’s Questions:

    #1 – How have you increased your food stockpiles this week? My usual grocery store trip.

    #2 – What type of no, low, or high-tech surveillance systems do you use or want to use on your prepper retreat? I have no surveillance system of any kind except the Mark I Eyeball, Mark I Nose, and the Mark I Ears (which are defective and require electronic assistance). Other than that, what I would LIKE to have in a TEOTWAWKI/WROL situation is some explosive booby traps. Gives a fine warning and, if properly made, thins the herd of bad guys at the same time. A nicely placed Claymore mine or two set up as a mechanical ambush, is an example (semi-high tech). Punji pits are good too (so low tech as to be almost primitive). Don’t forget the excrement on the stakes.

    #3 – What poultry keeping tips do you have to share, or questions would you like answered from our online survival community? None really. I consider myself lucky to be able to identify a chicken (generic) nine out of ten times.

    #4 – Prep this week? See above.

    1. Zulu 3-6,

      Also ordered some waterproof map covers. They seem a bit expensive for what they are, but better to keep your maps and plots dry. You can always use alcohol pens to write on the protective plastic, but it’s better to get your map sheets laminated instead if you plan to do that, then stick them inside the map protector.

      The ones I have covering my county and adjacent counties are probably 35 years old and were purchased from our local Department of Natural resources already laminated for something like $7.50 each. While inflation is low, it’s still there.

      I bought the battery tester Almost There suggested and TOP endorsed after some electronics research. Thanks to both. It seems to work much better than the cheapo I bought last week.

      My CC billing cycle ends this Tuesday so I’ll be ordering one (already in my wish list) next week.

      1. AT,

        Yes, you can download the PDF versions then if you want waterproof paper, Rite-in-the-Rain sells it. Their waterproof Duracopy 8×11 white printer paper can be had for $71.95 for a 100-sheet pack. 11×17 Duracopy is $143.95 for 100 sheets. You would have to trim all the printed pages and tape them together to get a regular map sheet out of the deal. You would probably want to laser print them in color.

        Personally, I think buying the printed map sheets, having them laminated, and keeping them in a waterproof map case is better. There is a commercial laminating company not far from my crib. I’m going to call them and see how much laminating maps sheets will cost. They don’t have prices on their website since there are a bunch of variables: size, one side, both sides, glossy, matte, satin, laminate thickness, etc.

        1. Zulu 3-6,

          Rite-in-the-Rain sells it. Their waterproof Duracopy 8×11 white printer paper can be had for $71.95 for a 100-sheet pack. 11×17 Duracopy is $143.95 for 100 sheets. You would have to trim all the printed pages and tape them together to get a regular map sheet out of the deal. You would probably want to laser print them in color.

          I agree and in the past have printed, cut, and taped pages together; but, found it’s just too much work and expense for an inferior product.
          By comparison purchasing and laminating maps os easier and probably less expensive, since a large map will also use a bit of laser toner

  4. really haven’t unless you count granola bars, a block of cheese and some rolls a stockpile.

    cameras, tripwires, etc

    don’t got any to share

    cleared a small area and stacked a cord (3 face cords) of hickory and oak firewood, split, and have a buyer palling to come get it later in the week, sold my sawmill and got 90% of the money back that i had in it. walked about 30 miles regular, walked 35 miles with weights on my feet, biked about 45 miles, all these trips with a 20lb pack on or heavier. counted up the hatched chicks, got 14 buff orpingtons and 30 bantams. arranged a sale of 60 fence posts. and keeping penny pinching since i have an opportunity to add another 36 acres to my farm (hence selling the mill, i didn’t use it much anyway, usually just have the amish do it since their mill is bigger, and i can work on something else while its done). also cut and stacked 2 face cord of misc poplar and pine firewood and stacked all the slash from the cleanup of the trees i cut.

    1. nemoseto,

      I hope you can add to your homestead. Adding land is always a good investment. I would love to have some land (more than 50 acres), and build a house right in the middle of it.

  5. Hi Tara & all,

    This has been a better week; but, still about 3.5 inches of rain and most of the non gravel area is soggy.

    Even though my flock still refuses to spread their wings and fly up into the nice nesting boxes I provided for them, one is now setting a clutch of eggs on the coop floor.

    We’ve been keeping chickens for more than a decade and none of our girls have ever used the nesting boxes, preferring to share one or more corners of the coop. There is simply no pleasing some critters.

    Guinea #7, as I call it, is a slight bit confused – it thinks it is a duck. When the ducklings cuddle up at night, they get into a semi-circle and use each other’s rump as a pillow. Guinea #7 is always included in the bedtime gathering and offers his rear end as a pillow, as well. I have tried several times to get a cute photo of the duckling and guinea sleepover, but when I raise my phone to snap a photo they all scatter.

    It sounds like you need to mount a stealth video camera, watch from afar and then retrieve and stop the camera at which point you can snag one of the frames as a still image. I just got one as listed in my preps for the week below, since they are getting amazingly powerful & inexpensive.

    If you have never baked with duck eggs, you should start. They make bread, biscuit, cake, or pie taste so much richer, creamier, and delicious. Because duck eggs are larger than chicken eggs, you must make some slight adjustments in your recipe.

    I have a friend who use to keep ducks, and who’s DD is a chef and while working as a trainee at a local French restaurant was getting $12.00 per dozen for the eggs.

    Now for your Week’s Questions

    1. How have you increased your food stockpiles this week?
    Just some canned food purchases rotated into stock, mostly as replacements.
    2. What type of no, low, or high tech surveillance systems do you use or want to use on your prepper retreat?
    We use a combination of cameras, motion sensing lights, and remote motion sensors; but, nothing really all that high tech.
    3. What poultry keeping tips do you have to share or questions would you like answered from our online survival community?
    None at this point in time. We currently only keep a small flock of hens for the eggs, and they generally produce enough to pay their keep and keep us in eggs with some to spare for trade.
    4. What did you do to prep this week?

    This past week we acquired and did the following.
    1. Received 2 USB External Audio Sound Card Adapters from my Hong Kong supplier. These will be used for additional ham radio communications modes.
    2. Received 5 USB Mini External Audio Sound Card Adapters from my Hong Kong supplier. These will also be used for additional ham radio communications modes & experiments.
    3. Changed the oil & filter in the ZT mower and started mowing. First time this year; but, not the last. The hard work here was picking up all of the sticks in the yard and removing the oil filter.
    4. Three Better Homes & Gardens hand towels from Wal-Mart. These were on sale and are very thick and absorbent. When I picked one up, the weight felt like our old ones when they were already wet
    5. Received 60 count Lindt LINDOR Milk Chocolate Truffles from woot.com
    6. 4 cans peas from Aldi’s
    7. Jar of Feta Stuffed olives from Aldi’s
    8. Two Additional Turbo Torches from Rural King
    9. 6 insulated plastic T-posts from rural king for antenna deployment
    10. 12 blueberry muffins from Aldi’s
    11. Large strawberry pot from Rural King
    12. The DW & I attended ”Stop the Bleed” & Traffic Management training from our local county EMA.
    13. Received a USB Hub multi card reader from my Hong Kong supplier
    14. Received 20 CPR masks from my Hong Kong supplier
    15. On May 1, 2019 @ 06:40 our power went out due to an injury crash 1/3 of a mile up the road from us. The incident required Life Flight to transport the injured and the power company had to take down and install a new pole.. The generator came on faithfully and ran without a problem; but, once again, the UPS units kept computers, satellite receivers, TV’s and some lighting running, during the generator startup and switchover. Power was restored @ 10:30
    16. Received a 4-Pack: of 8-Outlet Surge Protectors from Woot to extend the poor wiring in thos old house.
    17. Began looking @ new replacement outbuildings since the gravel is all now spread in place for the base.
    18. Received 2 3-axis accelerometer modules from my Hong Kong supplier
    19. Received a Mini HD 1.3MP Sports Camera from my Hong Kong supplier. I will use these for indoor surveillance, a dash cam and as a body camera, since they come with attachments for all of these things.
    20. Ordered an Off Grid Tools Survival Axe from woot.com with the following features
    Hatchet blade
    Hammer head, nail claw and pry bar
    Replaceable 6 inch thin kerf reciprocal saw blade
    Hex sockets 3/8, 7/16, 1/2, 9/16, 10mm, 11mm, 13mm, 15mm
    Hardened steel glass breaker
    Seat belt cutter
    Gas valve shut off wrench
    21. Ordered a Cree LED module for a C & D cell Maglite® to try. If this works out, we’ll get a few more for the other lights.

  6. 1. How have you increased your food stockpiles this week?
    See below.
    2. What type of no, low, or high tech surveillance systems do you use or want to use on your prepper retreat?
    We have a driveway alarm and a camera that sends alerts to my phone. Our low tech is our two dogs and the goats. The dogs bark, and our goats always look in the direction of whatever is outside.
    3. What poultry keeping tips do you have to share or questions would you like answered from our online survival community?
    Give chickens a try. Start small to see if you like it. If so, you can increase the numbers and size of your coop. The little coop can always be a ‘nursery coop’ for chicks. I would also recommend researching breeds that will work in your area. Buy different ones and see which you like best.
    4. What did you do to prep this week?

    This week:

    *Animals:
    -Trimmed goats’ hooves. I always dread that job.
    -Cleaned out the barnyard and stalls.
    -Buckling and wether were picked up by little 4-Her.

    *Garden:
    -It’s rained and rained and rained. I think I need to forget the garden and plant rice.

    *Added a little to the stockpile: vitamins, protein bars, candies,

    *Miscellaneous:
    -Sold a bush hog.
    -I’m still trying to sell some furniture and a couple of goats. I’ve decided that every nutjob and scam artist in five states have contacted me. I’m about to give up.

    *Skills:
    -I’m learning more about how to run the tractor.

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

  7. Our granddaughter was born Tuesday. We were very concerned because her long bones were not developing normally. Ten days before birth she weighed only 4 lbs. She almost doubled her weight the week before birth. She was born 7 lbs. 2 oz. She has an extra finger on each hand and an extra toe on one foot–all cosmetic fixes, the doctors say. Other than that, she is perfectly healthy.

    That’s all I have to report this week. Prays out for the Pack and for our President. Muller seems to forget that folks are innocent until PROVEN guilty.

      1. Thank you, Prepared Grammy. Mother and baby were released from the hospital Wednesday. They are home and doing well.

    1. Bam Bam,

      YAY!! Congrats grandma. I hope you have as much fun with your granddaughter as I have with mine.

      1. Thank you, Zulu. We are so excited. The kids send photos several times a day. I purchased a “Baby’s First Year” scrap book. We are going to make her the scrap book and send it to Mama next Mother’s Day. Baby Olive will be one year old then.

    2. Congratulations on the granddaughter, I have one and she is most wonderful child ever. I basically let their mothers raise my two daughters but I am paying attention and enjoying this one.

    3. Bam Bam,

      Our granddaughter was born Tuesday. We were very concerned because her long bones were not developing normally. Ten days before birth she weighed only 4 lbs. She almost doubled her weight the week before birth. She was born 7 lbs. 2 oz.

      Our DD was technically born premature, 3 weeks early. She was 5 lbs 14 oz and 20 inches long. She now stands about 5’ 9’ and towers over me. Not sure where she got those genes. LOL It sounds like your GD will be fine and will no doubt be showered in love from all directions.

      That’s all I have to report this week. Prays out for the Pack and for our President. Muller seems to forget that folks are innocent until PROVEN guilty.

      I think Mueller & Barr are doing fine, it’s just the Dems who are freaking out, since I think they realize that Barr will do his job and the facts of the matter will lead back to the FBI & the Obama White House. The Dems are in whiplash mode, looking to destroy the messenger before he delivers a serious blow to them and theirs, just in time for 2020.

      1. Thank you, Mari. The kids have not sent a photo today and it is Sunday–family day. I texted a mini-nasty gram. The kids should know to send pappy and nanna a photo each day! LOL

        1. Bam Bam,

          Since I babysit granddaughter so much, two-way photo exchanges are expected. However, now that she is over 2-1/2 years old now, daily photos from either party are not expected. When she is looking or doing something especially cute, yes. Videos too, like the one of her doing air guitar to “Limelight.” I took and shared vids of her dancing to her favorite dancing song, “Can’t Touch This” by MC Hammer when she was about 1-1/2 or so, but no big deal now.

          No one can get her to pose pretty like her daddy can though. And when she doesn’t want to be photographed, she is fast as a snake hiding her face.

          I have no clue how many photos I have of granddaughter in files on my laptop. I’d have to go add them up, easily in the hundreds. I have four separate folders just for granddaughter photos. Never mind the ones still on my phone.

          It gets better (or worse, depending on how maniacal you are at collecting baby pics). 🙂 Don’t forget the kind you can use as blackmail later when she’s a teenager.

    4. Congrats Grandma! I am glad that Mom and Baby Olive are healthy, that is all that we can ask for, right? Enjoy the new little one!

    5. BamBam
      That is wonderful news she is gaining weight, with all you to love her she will thrive to a happy healthy child.

  8. Not much prepping, maintaining takes most of my energy. My yard is bigger than it needs to be so I have a 20 hp lawn tractor. It is almost 20 years old but it was so dry after the turn of the century I only mowed my grass three or four times a year. I had, yes had, a lot of large oak trees so much of the yard was shaded. Anyway it runs great but the needle valve keeps sticking. The carburetor is not easy to get to so it takes me an hour to pull the hood and throttle connectors, remove the float bowl, clean it out and resemble everything. What ever I did this time really did the trick, it ran stronger then it ever has. No so with my Kubota, I knew the motor had a problem even though the dealer said it was something else. I was able to get my 100×75 ft garden rototilled but when I tried to use the box blade it started blowing smoke out of the crankcase vent and lugging down. My summer project, push it into the garage and tear down the motor. Rebuild kit is about $700, I will still have a good machine and a bunch of equipment for less then $3000.

    Being I am using it I have to fix up my brothers John Deere 3020. Our dad bought it in 1971 and put a dozier blade on the front. He first used it to clear off a house spot for me as I was getting married. The first wife is gone but I still live there. Anyway, I had to replace the alternator, it was the original and the repair shop owner said he never wanted to see that thing again. Yes, the same guy has been fixing it the whole time, he worked in his dad’s shop and is still there. I had to do some rewiring, an original external regulator equipped alternator was over $300, a generic Chinese one with an internal regulator was $79. A little Googling found some wiring diagrams. Turned out one wire had to come from the alternator light and after I traced it down I found that the socket had rusted away, no wonder it wasn’t charging. I had already installed the new alternator and clipped the wiring connector from the old one so I couldn’t use it any way. So now it charges the two new batteries I had to spend $300 for. Running heavy equipment isn’t cheap.

    Now I just have to replace the oil pressure sensor (it started leaking oil) and the four plastic injector boots. Why John Deere used plastic boots (they connect the injectors to a low pressure fuel return line) that split ever 5 or six years instead of rubber fuel hose like everyone else I do not know. Parts are here, I just have to install them.

    Today was more homestead maintaining, woke up before daylight this morning and no water pressure. Grabbed a flashlight and went out to the pump house to see what the problem was. Usually it is fire ants getting into the pressure switch contacts, seems they are attracted to ozone. Nope, no ants so I decided to wait until morning. Used my Keurig to make coffee and once fortified I got my volt meter (actually my spare volt meter, I fried my main one testing the electric fence I had to put around my strawberries to keep the raccoons out). The pump motor had power and I could turn it with a screwdriver, windings burnt out I guess. It’s over five years old so time for a new one. I went all out and got an American made 3/4 hp pump this time instead of a Chinese 1/2 hp. I use quick change fittings so swapping pumps is not difficult. I use a union on the suction side and use a hose barb on the discharge. The only trouble is the open side of my small pump shed is on the west side, hot, hot, hot. After mopping what seemed like quarts of sweat I got it installed and primed with the hose off. Whoa, lots of water! Put the hose to the tank back on and it pumped up in record time.

    A few purchases, 32 Variety Pack of heirloom seeds from Open Seed Vault, 13 heirloom seed packs from Patriot Supply Store.

    I have been eating down my food stash so I can restock with fresh items.

    My only security feature is a wireless driveway alarm but I share a driveway with the farm field next to my home and the farmer drives around it at all hours of the night chasing out hogs. Also deer troop up and down it all night so I turned it off. I need to put the sensor where the drive turns toward my home. That way the UPS woman can’t sneak up on me. She always has a big smile on her face and we talk a bit whenever she brings me something.

    No chickens yet, probably next year when TSC gets more chicks.

    Well, it is 5:30 and I finally cooled off from putting in that pump. Got the house to myself again tonight because my wife got held over at her overnight home nursing job and being it is an hours drive home and she has to be there tonight she is just stayed there. Think I will plant the rest of my garden. Watermelons, cucumbers, sweet corn (four varieties, two short and two long season) and crook neck squash. And some sweet potatoes. Yes, I am two months behind this being Florida but for sure I will get my fall crop of greens in on time this year.

    1. Daddio7,

      WOW, reading your post makes me want to go take a nap… Lol. Unfortunately, I need to get out in the garage. Slow moving today…

    2. If you have time/place to put them tsc has another chick sale in the fall. I think it ended early sept…. if you get on their mailing list will send out notice and chicks will be sent thru mail..we ordered 10 Americana last fall and they were laying by last week of feb…( oh they said they have a 1/10 chance of being wrong on the sexing of them.) they sent us 12. all were hens. all survived. I also got some Columbian wyandots… got 6/ they only come straigh run and 4 were roos. I really like the Columbian’s.So we will be having landraced chickens….

  9. Puppy is so cute watching me cut the forest back…mow the grass…LOL He would go to the front door, the back door and the rear bay windows. I went to the store and got him a new chew bone that has beef and pork flavors and he just laid there and demolished it.

    Food for storage,
    Bought canned green beans.
    Bought canned corn.
    Bought 6 lbs of hamburger. For freeze drying
    Bought 2 London broiles for jerky making.
    Bought2 lbs of Mexican shredded cheese for freeze drying.
    Bought 3 new York strips bone in so pupy gets a treat tomorrow. Beef is going up in price……
    Bought more puppy dry food and canned.

    Canned
    6 QTS of chicken breasts

    Freeze dried

    6 lbs of hamburger.
    2 lbs of shredded cheese.

    Dehydrated

    3lbs of jerky

    Power
    Charged some AA batteries
    Charged the power source 12v system.

    Security
    Practiced with the compound bow at 25 yards. (Funny Tara did the same thing)

    1. How have you increased your food stockpiles this week?
    2. What type of no, low, or high tech surveillance systems do you use or want to use on your prepper retreat?
    3.What poultry keeping tips do you have to share or questions would you like answered from our online survival community?

    1.See above, beef is going up in price.
    2.Alarm system, security lights, motion detectors, wireless cameras with live feed and hard wired cameras.
    Fences, security film on windows.
    3. Beer can chicken is good and so is chicken wings…..LOL

    Thor’s Questions:

    1. Do you think the USA will put troops on the ground in Venezuela? We are sending 2 aircraft carrier battle groups down there. One from the east coast and one from the west coast.

    2. Do you think America is under weather attacks or is it just a pole shift?

    3. Are you worried with all the talk about a possible asteroid striking Earth?

    4. Would you comply with an unconstitutional law to turn in your guns so we could be a socialist country like Venezuela?

    1. 1. Do you think the USA will put troops on the ground in Venezuela? We are sending 2 aircraft carrier battle groups down there. One from the east coast and one from the west coast.

      I’ve given up trying to figure out what politicians are going to do.

      2. Do you think America is under weather attacks or is it just a pole shift?

      With all of the rain we’ve gotten, I think God’s telling me to start growing rice.

      3. Are you worried with all the talk about a possible asteroid striking Earth?

      Not at all.

      4. Would you comply with an unconstitutional law to turn in your guns so we could be a socialist country like Venezuela?

      Absolutely not.

      1. Prepared Grammy,

        With all of the rain we’ve gotten, I think God’s telling me to start growing rice.

        I’ve thought the same thing; but, it’s too cold here for rice.
        We could of course start building a big boat. LOL.

    2. Thor1,
      Thor’s Questions:

      1. Do you think the USA will put troops on the ground in Venezuela? We are sending 2 aircraft carrier battle groups down there. One from the east coast and one from the west coast.
      No. I think we will provide support for the other central and south American countries like Columbia if the Carrier groups don’t deter the Russians and Cuban influence.
      2. Do you think America is under weather attacks or is it just a pole shift?
      Neither. It’s just weather that over the long term shifts around, in part due to solar activity. As for the flooding in the Midwest, the same thing happened in the mid 1990’s in part because people settle and build on flood plains and then don’t maintain the levies they build for protection.
      3. Are you worried with all the talk about a possible asteroid striking Earth?
      No, NASA and ESA are watching and calculating and there appears to be no problem, at least in my life time.
      4. Would you comply with an unconstitutional law to turn in your guns so we could be a socialist country like Venezuela?
      No. They would have to come and take them; but, they would no longer be of use to anyone, since they would be hot, dirty, and empty, with little ammo left around my place, assuming they could find everything and that half of the people otherwise complied.

      1. I totally agree with O.P.’s assessment.

        “1. Do you think the USA will put troops on the ground in Venezuela? We are sending 2 aircraft carrier battle groups down there. One from the east coast and one from the west coast.
        No. I think we will provide support for the other central and south American countries like Columbia if the Carrier groups don’t deter the Russians and Cuban influence.”

      1. JP, I’m using that new common core math….9th is the new 1st….LOL

        Don’t worry you’ll get a participation trophy…. LOL

    3. Thor’s Questions:

      1. Do you think the USA will put troops on the ground in Venezuela? We are sending 2 aircraft carrier battle groups down there. One from the east coast and one from the west coast. I sure hope not.

      2. Do you think America is under weather attacks or is it just a pole shift? See this article: https://thefederalist.com/2019/05/03/we-only-have-three-and-a-half-days-to-stop-climate-change/

      3. Are you worried with all the talk about a possible asteroid striking Earth? Alfred (E. Newman) said it best…

      4. Would you comply with an unconstitutional law to turn in your guns so we could be a socialist country like Venezuela?
      a. Right after Kamalla Harris.
      b. If we were a Socialist country like Venezuela, we would have to get rid of the Constitution; so it would no longer be unconstitional.
      c. No.

      1. I guess I could count my guard cat…. He lets me know when someone is at the back door… Ha…

    4. Thor1,

      Thor’s Questions:

      1. Do you think the USA will put troops on the ground in Venezuela? We are sending 2 aircraft carrier battle groups down there. One from the east coast and one from the west coast. I don’t see boots on the ground in the immediate future. If the US reoccupies the embassy, I can see a Marine FAST platoon going in with the normal Marine embassy guards. A FAST is a Fleet Anti-terrrorist Security Team. Essentially a big SWAT team to protect embassies and other US facilities overseas. A FAST platoon was on standby in Spain to go to Libya when Hillary didn’t wake up for the 3am phone call. The FAST would only stay long enough for the situation to normalize and they would stick to the embassy until then. As far as sending regular grunts, Marine or Army? I don’t see it if the new government can get a handle on things quickly. Carrier strike forces are nasty to mess with and troops may not be needed. If an amphibious ready group is sent too, that will involve an MEU (Marine Expeditionary Unit, that includes a reinforced infantry battalion, with artillery, tanks, helos, Ospreys, F-35 or Harrier jump jets). If troops are sent in, that MEU will likely be the first, and hopefully only, boots on the ground. An MEU can do some serious butt kicking if they have to, especially in conjunction with two carrier strike groups. The Cubans have first hand experience of an MEU from Grenada and they didn’t land the whole MEU either.

      2. Do you think America is under weather attacks or is it just a pole shift? I think we’re just in normal climactic fluctuations.

      3. Are you worried with all the talk about a possible asteroid striking Earth? No. Nothing seems to be close and even if we were about to get nailed, what could we do about it right now? No sense worrying about something that isn’t likely to happen soon. Normalcy bias? Maybe, but realistically, how to you prep for what would likely be an extinction event?

      4. Would you comply with an unconstitutional law o turn in your guns so we could be a socialist country like Venezuela? Absolutely not. Not only no, but f**k no.

    5. I have also noted the increase in meat prices overall, not just beef.
      To answer your questions:
      1) It would be a mistake for the US to put boots down in Venezuela, IMHO. We don’t need to get involved in another ‘regime building’ situation.
      2)I wish ppl would realize that the ‘facts’ supporting ‘global warming’ and ‘climate change’ have been manipulated to support those points of view. Weather patterns change, there are lots of influences on them. Am I happy about the changes in the weather, sometimes yes sometimes no, but it is what it is. Now if you want to talk about geoengineering, and how that could potentially be influencing our weather patterns, that is another story. Oh, that and the ‘push’ to ‘sequester’ and decrease carbon dioxide levels, that is just idiocy.
      3)I kinda keep an eye on the asteroid stuff, but honestly, if it’s gonna happen, it will wipe everything out anyhow. So it’s not a scenario I prep for. If it happens it happens, and ain’t much we can do about it.
      4)HELL NO

      1. Grammyprepper,

        2)I wish ppl would realize that the ‘facts’ supporting ‘global warming’ and ‘climate change’ have been manipulated to support those points of view. Weather patterns change, there are lots of influences on them. Am I happy about the changes in the weather, sometimes yes sometimes no, but it is what it is. Now if you want to talk about geoengineering, and how that could potentially be influencing our weather patterns, that is another story. Oh, that and the ‘push’ to ‘sequester’ and decrease carbon dioxide levels, that is just idiocy.

        So that would make you a climate change ”denier”? LOL
        The very fact that the opposition uses terms like ”believer” & ”denier” says it all.
        I am a scientist and have used the scientific method to solve problemts since I was a teen, and the terms ”belief”, ”denial” &, “consensus” are not in the scientific lexicon; but, are terms of faith. You can believe in god or not, or believe that there is a Yeti or a Loch Ness monster or not; but, believing or denying a measureable thing with many changing variables is just an absurd distraction.
        When Nixon created the EPA in 1970 with the follow on Clean Air & Clean Water acts, we really did have a problem with air and water pollution, since many large cities simply dumped their sewage into the local rivers or oceans; however, in the intervening years, most of that problem has been mitigated (at great expense) and we now have some of the cleanest air and waterways in the world.
        The climate change pushers however, continue to obfuscate the matter by calling Carbon Dioxide emissions, ”pollution”
        As for sequestering CO2 and decreasing carbon dioxide levels, I don’t think it is idiocy, and is in fact something we all do all of the time when we plant gardens or trees. Even grass uses some of that “evil polluting gas”, so composting it not only makes a good soil amendment, it captures and fixes some of that stuff to help us feed ourselves.
        As for geoengineering, other than cloud seeding and trying to change the Albedo I don’t think much is going on, or even possible. Making more of the “black” in the cities “white” or a lighter color would I think help a bti, to eliminate the heat island effects of those cities; but, I suspect the change in local climates might upset those residents who don’t often see the extremes of temperature we often see here in the rural “green” areas.

    6. Thor 1, indeed, drunk chicken is delicious! I had to shoot a rooster this weekend and if I had not been on the way to a 1st birthday party of a nephew’s son, he would have found his way into the smoker to make just that dish!

  10. This Week’s Questions

    1. How have you increased your food stockpiles this week? See below.

    2. What type of no, low, or high tech surveillance systems do you use or want to use on your prepper retreat? Starlight scope…

    3. What poultry keeping tips do you have to share or questions would you like answered from our online survival community? None; no chickens yet.

    4. What did you do to prep this week? ….

    I hear a lot of talk about people “leaving” the “prepper movement”. We continue to expand our prep “stash”. Diversity (back-ups), financial standing (debt reduction), spare parts, and replacement of used items are our focus. Adding freeze dried foods to the storage – not a lot but a can or 3 per month of meats and cheese; mostly when it’s on sale.

    Ammo and accessories are now prevalent and low in cost (relatively). I’m finding that if you are not in a panic, you can still expand your “stash” and keep costs down. And then there is the coming political season. Politicians don’t control natural disasters and can really not help make our finances better. FEMA has admitted that they are “overrated”. Taxes are just out of control and IMO will just go up. Letting them control your “prepper” focus, IMO is a serious mistake; you’ll spend too much and buy the wrong stuff.

    We lost another major grocery here (after a smaller “up-town” grocery closed). 20% off starting the 1st (no new deliveries since 4/22), bought some things we usually get at regular price that are shelf stable, DW stocked up on her groceries too.

    For Bible scholars, students, teachers, or just those who love maps: we received Rose Book of Bible Charts, Maps & Time Lines, 10th anniversary edition. Excellent spiral bound reference book!

    When we stopped at Front Sight, we were also looking at what equipment we needed to get. I have one set of Walker Ear Buds (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01GUB2T1K/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o01_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1), they went on sale this week on Amazon for $76.00, so I ordered a set for the DW. My pair has not been used for 3 years and still had a considerable charge left. They work great if you have glasses and a hat on.

    Received: Mag-Pul mags, silicone cloths, Walker electronic ear buds, Rose Book of Bible Charts, Maps & Time Lines, Creamy Wheat, Morning Moo’s, Colby Cheese FD AF #10, Extended Lock Lever for Glock Gen 5, Thrift shop sweat shirt,

    1. JP in MT,

      I note you bought silicone cloths. Nothing wrong with them, but I have a product to suggest that I’ve used since the 1980s and so have the Navy SEALS (I asked one about the company’s claim and he verified that SEALS do, in fact, use and like this product).

      Sentry Solutions Tuf-Cloth. I actually use their Marine Tuf-Cloth as it is a little better in wet environments and puts a slightly heavier coating on your weapons and magazines (not Magpuls though :-))

      You can use it on knives, tools, and all sorts of other metal items that could rust. Sentry Solutions also has other products that I have found to be very good (lubes, etc).

      When you use a Tuf-Cloth, the coating goes on wet, but dries pretty quickly. You can also buy the Tuf-Cloth solutions in bottles to renew the cloths themselves. It does not attract dust or dirt once dry on the weapon.

      1. Zulu 3-6:

        Thanks for the recommendation. These are for the gun shows, where they occasionally go missing. At less than $3 each, I can live with loosing these.

    2. “no tech alarm” – I forgot the Chawinnie. What she lacks in size, she more than makes up in volume and enthusiasm.

    3. JP,

      I hear a lot of talk about people “leaving” the “prepper movement”.

      I don’t doubt that; but, that seems to eventually happen to all”movements”m which is why a lifestyle is required.

      We continue to expand our prep “stash” Diversity (back-ups), financial standing (debt reduction), spare parts, and replacement of used items are our focus. Adding freeze dried foods to the storage – not a lot but a can or 3 per month of meats and cheese; mostly when it’s on sale.

      Sounds like a lifestyle to me.
      For Freeze Dried food, I purchased 2 of these a few weeks ago from woot and they are still available. Amazon Prime members get free shipping.
      Patriot Pantry 1-Week Food Supply Ammo Can (1,500+ Calories/Day)
      https://sport.woot.com/offers/patriot-pantry-1-week-food-supply-ammo-can-7

    4. JP, I find your comment about ppl ‘leaving the prepper movement’ rather interesting. I would be interested in hearing you expand upon that comment. Because I ‘left’ the prepper ‘arena’ several years ago myself, with the exception of following The Pack and one or two other websites. It had nothing to do with the political climate, but rather the ‘climate’ of a lot of prepper groups/sites/etc. While I continue to ‘prep’, I have adopted more of a ‘homesteading’ style and tend to follow more homesteading focused blogs/groups. Present company excepted, I found prepper groups to be very judgemental. Homesteading folks, on the other hand, who do many of the same things but from a different perspective, tend to be more welcoming, more willing to offer advice as opposed to criticizing/villifying. I would be interested to hear comments from everyone on this topic.

      1. Grammyprepper,

        I agree with your view that some other “prepper” sites are not very friendly, especially if you don’t share their worldview on how prepping should be done.

        The group here is very eclectic, running from urban to pretty much off-the-grid. Everyone has different backgrounds, and quite extensive training and experience in many areas. Not to mention funny (chickens are a gateway drug to maintaining livestock). 🙂 That tickles me.

        We like to share our lives with each other too.

        I learn a lot of things from this mob 🙂

        1. Zulu 3-6 to Grammyprepper,

          I agree with your view that some other “prepper” sites are not very friendly, especially if you don’t share their worldview on how prepping should be done.

          There are some of those “my way or the highway” places; but, I think it’s not the site as much as the community haunting those spaces.
          I don’t want to cast aspersions; but, this site under former management is where most of us first met, and then most followed to the new site, until the owner became one of those who seemed to need validation and would not even accept constructive criticism. We’ve come full circle, with many of us back here, although I still often wonder about Penrod, and if he was ever able to escape Hawaii. As I type ” escape Hawaii” I have to laugh, since many see it as a tropical paradise; but, my 10 days there with my sister who was stationed there for 9 years, has given me a different perspective. Everything is way too expensive, their laws are almost dictatorial, and while it’s a nice cultural experience to visit, I would not live there, with no ways to leave other than ships or planes. Bug out is near impossible.

          The group here is very eclectic, running from urban to pretty much off-the-grid. Everyone has different backgrounds, and quite extensive training and experience in many areas. Not to mention funny (chickens are a gateway drug to maintaining livestock). 🙂 That tickles me.

          There also seems to be a lack of ego, in that suggestions or descriptions of how we individually do things are taken as just another option for others to consider, as we all try to find our way with a variety of skill sets, locations, and budgets.

          We like to share our lives with each other too.

          True, and I apologize for not replying to that email & photo of #2 and her fire extinguisher; but, things have been way too busy here, trying to get things done between the raindrops. I will address it sometime this week.

          I learn a lot of things from this mob 🙂

          Who you callin’ ”MOB”. I however sometimes resemble that remark. LOL

      2. Grammyprepper,

        I find your comment about ppl ‘leaving the prepper movement’ rather interesting. I would be interested in hearing you expand upon that comment. Because I ‘left’ the prepper ‘arena’ several years ago myself, with the exception of following The Pack and one or two other websites.

        I have ”lived” this lifestyle for most of my life; but, continuously watched the labels change with the times. In the 1970’s it was the ”hippie back to the land commune movement; but, as those folks found out that it was actually hard work, we saw the label change to the ”survivalist” movement, culminating IMHO in the great Y2K non-event. The label then eventually changed to “prepper”; but, even then those who do not prep vilify us with shows like ”Doomsday Preppers”. I was contacted by those people as were others on this forum, back when it was run by another, and all of us promptly deleted the email, since OPSEC is seriously gone for those who were on the show, and most of us do this for ourselves and not for the lime light.

        I found prepper groups to be very judgemental. Homesteading folks, on the other hand, who do many of the same things but from a different perspective, tend to be more welcoming, more willing to offer advice as opposed to criticizing/villifying. I would be interested to hear comments from everyone on this topic.

        I think many who come to this community do so as a way to justify to themselves or a spouse, that they ”need” to spend money for the toys they want, under the guise of being prepared.
        If you are one of those who actually takes this on as a lifestyle (like many new homesteaders), and dares to challenge them on the need for their toys, they get upset, since you are pointing out the folly of all the money they spent without being able to purchased the promised security.
        If you beat someone in a shooting match using your stock hunting rifle against their custom built high end expensive target rifle, you might see the same response.

      3. Grammyprepper:

        The “comments” I’m hearing is mostly from blog owners who are saying “readership” is down. They are also complaining that their commissions are also down, incidcating to them that people are not buying as much.

        My buying is down, although not from a change of conviction, but a change of focus. We have a pretty good “back stock” of groceries, ammo, firearms, and equipment that we would need at our current location. I still buy ammo, as we are now doing more training. I buy a few freezed dried items a month to replace the conventional canned (home and commercial) items we are using up. Instead of buying a new gun, I now buy parts; and when I do get a new one it is to replace an old one. Although I am looking at another generator ($500 down from $1000) as a back up, most of what I’m getting are again, spare parts.

        No one I personally know is prepping less or has quit. The reasons we started are still there, we’ve just been granted more time than we originally thought. But I do think some of the “shine” has worn off for those who are looking to be “in” or part of a movement. And for many the bill has come do, so, like us, we are focusing on our financial position, vs. buying more stuff.

        1. JP,

          The “comments” I’m hearing is mostly from blog owners who are saying “readership” is down. They are also complaining that their commissions are also down, incidcating to them that people are not buying as much.

          This could be the same thing that’s happening to Apple, since everyone has one or more models of the iPhone and don’t need to spend money on another with minimal additional functionality.

          My buying is down, although not from a change of conviction, but a change of focus. We have a pretty good “back stock” of groceries, ammo, firearms, and equipment that we would need at our current location.

          It’s the same here, and a few weeks back I looked at my list for this post and realized it kept getting shorter & shorter; but, then again we don’t need to many normal things, and only purchase the occasional bargain. If you do this long enough, theoretically, you could stop purchasing everything except for things like gasoline for the vehicles.

          No one I personally know is prepping less or has quit. The reasons we started are still there, we’ve just been granted more time than we originally thought. But I do think some of the “shine” has worn off for those who are looking to be “in” or part of a movement. And for many the bill has come do, so, like us, we are focusing on our financial position, vs. buying more stuff.

          We are old enough to have little debt along with plenty of stuff, so other than normal shopping to replace canned goods, milk, and Aldi’s blueberry muffins, as they are used we don’t spend much, and are frugal with what we do spend.
          BTW, the milk & muffins are used nearly every morning for breakfast.

  11. I forgot to add that I attended a gun class at my martial arts academy. There were only six of us. I am surprised that besides the instructor, I was the only person in the class who had ever handled a gun.

    1. Bam Bam,

      I attended a gun class at my martial arts academy. There were only six of us. I am surprised that besides the instructor, I was the only person in the class who had ever handled a gun.

      That doesn’t surprise me, since a lot of city folks have never had the chance, like the country folks who shoot in the back yard or field. In my nearly 3 decades of instruction, I sometimes prefer the newbie’s (especially compared to guys with egos), since you can teach them the proper way to handle and shoot, without first working on breaking their bad habits.

  12. Hi everyone, I’m late to the party again lol. We’ve been working on our property, doing weeding around the fence, raking up the cedar leaves getting them into piles to dump in our food recycling garbage cans, hubby washed our Suburban, and mowed the yard. We are finally getting some good spring Weather out West. I’m planning on borrowing my dad’s pickup truck, to do a dump run this coming week. We stopped and bought a quart of Black berry honey, I can’t wait to try it out. I did my rotation out and brought my extra can food out to our camper to use for lunches and dinner. I did buy some new herbs, and a tomato plant to get started in my garden, all my Blueberries and Raspberries, and Elderberry, are doing great. my Grape is coming back hoping I get some grapes this year, if not they sure are a nice addition to my arbor. I cleaned out my garden shed I moved my shelves around and spray painted my bakers rack, and moved in to the other side and put a plastic rack in its place, it’s nice to have my shed cleaned up and ready for planting. I haven’t bought much food we’ve been pretty well stocked up so eating out of the freezer and refrigerator that’s it for this past week.

    1. Blackberry honey sounds delicious! We are getting ready to plant more elderberry. Get some pygmy and/or Nigeria dwarf goats and you will never have to weed eat again 🙂

  13. Mom of three,
    You just thought YOU were late here I am dragging in again.
    My preps this week included more in way of rotating out and will be replacing some things different than what we have stored…canned veg all will got o the chickens., along with most of cornmeal….and some fo things i found improperly stored….( from storage unit off property…too much heat, …and. little in way of purchase, but aquired some things anyway, thru freestore and sources. I picked up 6 various kinds/loaves of sprouted grain and speciality breads…I got 2 gallons of baby carrots, a gallon of broccoli( after cut up).. about a half stalk of celery several tomatoes 6 onions. enough new potatoes for 2 good “messes” …the carrots made a little more than a quart after dehydrated. Broccoli made a 26 oz jar full,/dehydrated.. celery is dried, but not in final form will be ground. for celery powder to add to soups….tomatoes will use for sandwiches onions ? will prob eat with potatoes .. for breakfast.

    . I hauled , loaded w/ shovel, and unloaded ditto. 2 loads of sawdust. one rotted and one fresh pine shavings… rotted will go in garden raised beds, and pine sawdust will go in coop .. have done the hen house, after placing old litter n compost bin… and re supplied the nesting boxes. with fresh sage grass and pulled grass from the hillside. I dd spend about 2 hours raking and securing the beginning of the hay and grasses the flock will require for the winter..
    have worked with reorganizing in several areas, and have worked on first aide kit for car and travel..got in feed , working on travel routes and packing lists.still a bit out but have begun with minimal lists…will see how that goes. When i drop off line do not be worried. where we are going has no internet at present.Do not anticipate having wi fi..( no dumb phone does not have this service.)
    . I have continued to gather materials needed for setting up wicking beds/bins. and the raised beds… still have 2 more to get installed and filled ….set out another 2 dozen sweet potatoes and pulled 36 more slips for rooting in water… will transplant in next few days to soil and protect until established.with soil roots…then final planting…white/blue and red Potatoes are up…. onions doing ok. Grape vines ok.
    still working on cleaning out this upright freezer. have planned burial for it soon.. will replace in July if all according to plan. was able to find some pork loin on sale and put up a small amount ground beef.today spent less than 30$… Penny pinching mode intact. LOL

    Now for questions with comments.
    #1 Food preps… as above.dehydrated foods in glass containers and packed with hot hands as oxygen absorbers. I allow these to heat PER instructions ON them, then put in jar. and seal.
    #2 security measures.. we have some. but do not include guineas or ducks. Others can deal with those. we don’t have enough space to get them far enough from the house….( maybe a mile would be about right) DH does not like he eggs.
    #3 Chickens ARE the Gateway DRUG for homesteading ! Beware.!
    best tips i have to pass on .A. keep the girls happy. B.give them clean nesting areas, well ventilated roost, with clean floor.C..Put apple cider Vinegar in their water and DE in their layer feed…Poopy eggs are a sign of worms. these two things take care of them.. some chicken guru’s recommend a mix of herbals for chicken treats… including oregano, mint family… ? If you choose to give the hens back egg shells be sure to cook them and grind them… these are also good to put around nighshade family plants…tomaotes, potatoes ,peppers.
    I have begun storing all my clean eggs. as in “come out of the chicken clean” , unwashed…in lime water. takes about 8.5 qts water and 8.5 oz oz hydrated lime/ or pickling lime to put away a 5 gallon bucket…i got 220 eggs in first bucket… Country Vet has stored some 18 months with zero bad.She is in hotter climate. .so if works where she is should work for me as well. stable storage for when it gets too hot and they go thru molt. no refrigerator required.
    Thors Q’s/I hope not, think it is support for other nations.and their actions. #2 attack. rice crop sounds like a good crop to be raising…in some areas with the flooding.. Oh i heard a report this week that 2 caravans are going to help the farmers in distress. have/ being organized in OHIO.. taking all that needed to plant and assist other farmers. enough to restore faith in humanity…
    #3 No, Not worried, can’t do anything about it. a single asteroid will not set the earth to burning and final analysis says” earth will be burned up”…its in the book many of us read… you know the black copy or the red copy… #4. After all the people in the OUTHOUSE give up their privae and public security guards and remove their gates from the hinges… then will consider it very briefly… really don’t even know anyone that utterly STUPID.

  14. Well, the rain keeps coming down…a nice day here or there (usually when I have to work, of course)…I’ve only visited my peas once, they seem to be coming along nicely. The Sugar Snaps are doing well, the new ones seem slower growing (another breed of snap pea, Oregon something). The seedlings are doing well under the grow lights, only another week or so til I can transplant the beans, tomatos, basil, parsley.

    DH bought me a three wheeled bicycle that he will be putting an electric motor on. His latest hobby has been building bicycles and putting gas engines on them (he’s done 3). He wanted to build me one so we could ride around together. I just wasn’t comfortable with the idea of a two-wheeler anymore. And now that we’ve gotten the bike, I am excited! It’s sharp! I also count it as a prep, since it’s an alternative way to get around, and since I requested an electric motor, it can also potentially be solar rechargeable! It won’t fit on a ‘traditional’ bike carrier, so I’m thinking we need to find a way to mount it on top of the popup for our camping trips. Top speed is around 15 mph, so it can’t be used for quick getaways, but it suits me.

    Tara’s questions:
    1) Basically just replaced stuff we’ve used the past week food wise. Noticing the rising meat prices in the grocery store, it is time to hit the local butcher again. We usually stock up for summer around this time anyhow.
    2)If we lived more rural, I would definitely have guineas. Used to get eggs from an Amish farmer who had them, and I can attest to what good ‘guard dogs’ they are! That and dogs!
    3)No poultry yet, so can’t offer advice, but will certainly partake of the wisdom here when I finally succumb to the ‘gateway drug’ of chickens!
    4)see above

    And if anyone’s late to the party, it’s me, LOL! Work has been absolutely crazy…

    1. Grammyprepper,

      Well, the rain keeps coming down…a nice day here or there (usually when I have to work, of course)

      I don’t know if you’re working today; but, sunny & 75° is the forecast, so we hope to finally get the tiller out and prepare for some planting.

      DH bought me a three wheeled bicycle that he will be putting an electric motor on. His latest hobby has been building bicycles and putting gas engines on them (he’s done 3).

      We need to talk. I’ve wanted an ATV; but, with the cost of the new vehicle, the new building, and now considering a new tractor, this might work out for both of us.

      He wanted to build me one so we could ride around together. I just wasn’t comfortable with the idea of a two-wheeler anymore. And now that we’ve gotten the bike, I am excited!

      I don’t have a problem with a 2 wheeler; but, you’ve been here and seen the layout, and I need something to ride off-road, since the local roads (even the back roads) are often thick with traffic, always in a hurry.

    2. Grammy Prepper,

      Guineas are so fun to watch. I was at a local Amish farm this weekend to pick up feed. The owner has a Gypsy Vanner stud that I like to pet and marvel at. The $25K price tags ensures I will never be an owner, but I can still enjoy seeing that majestic animal and will eventually talk the Amish friend into letting me saddle him up just once for a spin around the pasture!

  15. Tara, you have my admiration and not a little envy! I wish I had the energy you do.

    We have a combination of several warning devices. Driveway type alarms from Harbor Freight, the old GI standby of two cans, each containing a few rocks, connected together by monofilament, explosive shotgun caps fired when a monofilament line is tripped and other “things” which I can put in place quickly to ruin someone’s day completely.

    We reduced the loan on our BOL by more than 10% this month. And have the ability to pay it off completely tomorrow if necessary.

    Acquired at no cost, a microwave oven to mount over the kitchen range, replacing the counter top one currently in use.

    We prepped the raised beds for this growing season. Planting over the next couple weeks.

    I’m not worried in the least about an asteroid strike.

    In my opinion, we should make it clear to the Cubans and Russians, that we are prepared to annihilate any of their troops in Venezuela if it becomes necessary to send in military force. And to Cuba that Havana would not be spared either. Cuba has been a wart on the world’s azz for too long and Russia has no business propping Maduro up either. He would not survive without his Cuban muscle. This is a completely different kind of problem than is Iraq or Afghanistan. If Maduro and his goons are gone, the Venezuelan people will be quite OK without any additional assistance, except humanitarian supplies of food, water and medicines. The Monroe Doctrine should mean something and the agreement the US made, that we would abstain from attacking Cuba was with the Soviet Union, which no longer exists.

    I absolutely will not give my guns up under any circumstances.

    1. Billy T,

      Tara, you have my admiration and not a little envy! I wish I had the energy you do.

      I agree with you; but, to be fair, Tara is 20 years my junior and 30 years your junior, so for old guys I think we’re doing OK. LOL

      We have a combination of several warning devices. Driveway type alarms from Harbor Freight

      Those HF alarms work great and @ only $10.00 each with a coupon are quite a deal. They actually have several models that look & work the same; but, are incompatible with each other. I use this to my advantage, using some for the driveway and others fir our equipment shed and perimeter, so I actually have different alarms depending on where the motion was detected.

      In my opinion, we should make it clear to the Cubans and Russians, that we are prepared to annihilate any of their troops in Venezuela if it becomes necessary to send in military force. And to Cuba that Havana would not be spared either. Cuba has been a wart on the world’s azz for too long and Russia has no business propping Maduro up either. He would not survive without his Cuban muscle. This is a completely different kind of problem than is Iraq or Afghanistan. If Maduro and his goons are gone, the Venezuelan people will be quite OK without any additional assistance, except humanitarian supplies of food, water and medicines.

      While we don’t ”need” to do battle with anyone, I agree that sometimes it is necessary, and should always be an option. As for the Venezuelan population, once they are up and running as a free economy, their oil reserves could easily make them another rich nation in short order, once the kleptocrats are gone and banished.

      The Monroe Doctrine should mean something and the agreement the US made, that we would abstain from attacking Cuba was with the Soviet Union, which no longer exists.

      I think even that agreement was in response to a threat from soviet nuclear tipped IRBM’s placed there in 1962, and I could see another “Venezuelan missile crisis” on the horizon if we don’t act ASAP.
      As for the late USSR, I suspect Putin (the old KGB agent) is trying desperately to rebuild that empire.

      1. OP, I love you man, but we disagree on this point. First, the Monroe doctrine was imposed by president James Monroe in 1823, to prevent countries from establishing colonies in the Americas. He recognized that it is inherently more dangerous to have those not favorably disposed toward the US nearer than absolutely necessary.

        It is apparent that China and Russia, through their ally Cuba are trying to dominate Venezuela, thereby creating the opportunity to more easily spread their influence throughout South and Central America. Already, China is lending money to any of those economically disadvantaged nations, which they know full well the countries will not be able to repay. The price to forego collection of those loans is evermore concessions. The whole situation is a hot mess.

        Without the muscle of the Cuban and Russian troops, Maduro would be toast long since. I do not see them letting Maduro go. BTW, this is another lesson in the evil of gun control. All guns were seized from the Venezuelan people several years ago, ostensibly to make the nation a safer place. Those same guns have been distributed to Maduro’s goons now and have been turned against ordinary citizens.

        1. Billy T,

          OP, I love you man, but we disagree on this point. First, the Monroe doctrine was imposed by president James Monroe in 1823, to prevent countries from establishing colonies in the Americas. He recognized that it is inherently more dangerous to have those not favorably disposed toward the US nearer than absolutely necessary.

          I understand and agree so I don’t know what the point of disagreement is. My point about Cuba, was that we agreed not to invade as an extortion payment in 1962 as the Soviets removed their IRBM’s; but, at the same time in November 1963, we quietly removed our Jupiter missiles from Turkey.

          It is apparent that China and Russia, through their ally Cuba are trying to dominate Venezuela, thereby creating the opportunity to more easily spread their influence throughout South and Central America. Already, China is lending money to any of those economically disadvantaged nations, which they know full well the countries will not be able to repay. The price to forego collection of those loans is ever more concessions.

          You mean of course, something like foreclosure.

          Without the muscle of the Cuban and Russian troops, Maduro would be toast long since. I do not see them letting Maduro go.

          I agree as they did with Chavez before him.

          BTW, this is another lesson in the evil of gun control. All guns were seized from the Venezuelan people several years ago, ostensibly to make the nation a safer place. Those same guns have been distributed to Maduro’s goons now and have been turned against ordinary citizens.

          You are singing to the choir brother. It’s just that goons like Sen. Charley Schlimer tell us that couldn’t happen here.

          Also, while we’re talking about infiltration around us, has everybody seen this? Shocking video of children in Philadelphia Muslim Society: ‘We will chop off their heads’ for Allah
          https://www.foxnews.com/us/video-philadelphia-muslim-society-children

          I’m all for freedom of speech AND religion; but, ???
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rJqmEpTN-RI
          Say what?

          1. OP, I simply meant that we cannot allow Russia or Cuba to establish a colony in the Americas and we need to make sure they both realize the cost to them if it becomes necessary to use force to get rid of Maduro. IMO, we should not be bound by a deal made with a non-existent country. I lived the Cuban missile crisis. I was stationed on a SAC base and spent every day of that period going up and down the flight line ensuring all the B52s and KC135s were ready to take off at a moments notice. The bombers were loaded with nukes and the tankers were full of fuel, ready to go. It was a little edgy! Anyway, I know the deal that was made between Kennedy and Khrushchev. It embarrassed the Soviet general council so much that it was the end of Khrushchev.

    2. Awe thank you Billy T. It took us years to get and develop our dream land, every day is a grand adventure that is a mixture of hard work, love, lots of mud and manure.

      1. Tara, it reminds me so much of my early years. We lived a homesteader existence, growing our own food, butchering almost all of our meat, preserving our food, foraging wild foods, etc. Mother even made most of our clothes. We had a shoemaker’s last and even repaired our shoes! You are right though, lots of work for everyone and no one dared ask someone else to do something unless it was totally beyond our capabilities. Mother’s favorite saying was, “can’t can never do anything”.

        1. Billy T,

          Mother’s favorite saying was, “can’t can never do anything”.

          Are you sure we didn’t have the same mother? LOL
          It seems that certain traditions are nationwide or perhaps even worldwide.
          For instance when mom called me by my full name including an emphasis on the middle name, I knew I was in trouble.

          1. I have to LOL on that one…my dad is the oldest of 8, and my oldest aunt is 3 months younger than me so I grew up with them all. Grandma would start yelling from the oldest to the youngest til she hit the ‘ right’ one but admonish us all!

          2. Grammyprepper,

            my dad is the oldest of 8, and my oldest aunt is 3 months younger than me so I grew up with them all. Grandma would start yelling from the oldest to the youngest til she hit the ‘right’ one but admonish us all!

            I was the oldest of 3, and while that kind of thing didn’t happen often to us, that’s also an old trick. You know someone did the deed; but, no one will fess up, so you make sure you got the right one, and generally those who were innocent just blew things off.
            I could nearly always talk my mom into things and it was dad who was the occasional hard case; but, often, when I did something I knew I shouldn’t have, mom would tell me ”Just wait ‘til your dad gets home”.
            He would come home and we would be all sitting at the kitchen table eating dinner (supper?) while I was being quiet and waiting for the boom to drop on me, only to find out later that she hadn’t told him anything. I guess the torture of the anticipation was enough punishment.
            I can laugh at that now; but, at the time it was sheer torture.

          3. TOP,

            I’m the oldest of seven. The problem we had was that both of our parents had been Detroit police officers, plus my dad had been a Marine. They were really hard to BS. Plus all of us had no problem ratting on the others. Mom had no qualms about laying the leather on, but if she said, “Wait until your dad gets home” we were really screwed, blued, and tattooed. Mom never forgot to tell dad and the bomb always dropped before supper because, at least for the boys, having to do supper dishes was usually part of the punishment (a lot of dishes, pots, and pans for nine people).

            My mom actually liked it when the boys had to do dishes. We did them faster, minimal whining, and did them right the first time. My sisters turned dishes into a long term, knock down, drag out affair.

          4. OP, there is no doubt we had the same kind of Mothers! Young adults in the depression all came out with the same no-nonsense attitudes.

          5. Billy T,

            there is no doubt we had the same kind of Mothers! Young adults in the depression all came out with the same no-nonsense attitudes.

            True, and most of the father’s I knew, including my own, were WW II veterans, and had a clear vision of right & wrong, and the meaning of education and hard work. Many had seen the true face of evil and understood what inaction can breed.
            Those lessons from my dad may be why I tend to get involved and not just be a bystander.

  16. HAPPY MOTHERS DAY to all Mothers and prayers to all who have lost their Mothers.

    I hung a Texas flag outside yesterday in memory of my Mom, she was born in Texas and that was her flag that she bought after finally getting her birth certificate from Texas after a court house burnt down. I’d like to think she was looking down at it smiling.

    1. Yes, Happy Mother’s Day to all mothers.

      I was in Texas since last Wednesday, getting back to TN last night. There were many wild flowers all over the place. My sister said she wished “mom could see all of these”. I said “she does”. Thinking about her again today as I go out and plant the garden. When I was a teenager, I wish I had paid more attention when she was growing things in the garden.

      We miss our mom every day. It’s been 11 years now.

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