Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Looks like more inflation is coming. Time to stock up more!

    I think what the Central banks have done with Quantitative Easing  on a world wide scale will result in inflation with a vengeance in 3- 6 months. You don't solve debt by taking out more debt and then hope your paycheck will go up so you can still make the higher payments. You have to suck it up and start paying down your debt. Yes it will hurt, perhaps you will lose things to being repo'ed but you have to get small and focus on necessities. The scale is different from your kitchen table to the halls of congress to the Fed, but the math is the same.    
   I'm planning to get some more flour and sugar at Paul's Market. They have a good buy on 25 pounds of flour for $6.00 and 25 pounds of sugar for $13.00. I like flour and grains as they are great multi-tasker, and while white flour only stores for 5 years compared to whole grain wheat's 25 years.  I use it fast enough to keep it rotated. I'm not up to it physically to grind grain when I want to make something so flour is a great compromise.
   Then off to Fred Meyer's to get 2 more cans of coffee at $7.00 each. I bought 12 cans about 2 years ago and drank it  hoping for a recovery of the coffee crop which has not happened and looks to be kinda iffy for the future. If I find coffee for $7.00 (new price point) I'm buying and working toward 12 cans again on hand. All coffee is imported to the lower 48 and Alaska so this will be a hard to come by item by cost at least. In Idaho they grow grains and sugar beets so it will be accessible, but there are only poor substitutes for coffee and they don't grow in Idaho.
    I've been darn pleased with Champion sport's bra I got at Fred Meyers on sale and the Fruit of the Loom sweatpants at Family Dollar. I'll get 2 more of the sweat pants this paycheck and wait a bit and see if the bras go on sale again. Cotton prices spiked last year and it will start hitting the ready to wear in 2012 as rising prices start hitting the stores. I've also noticed the socks I buy are a bit thinner fabric than I used to get with Hanes cotton socks so it looks like the manufacturer's are dropping the weight of fabric to stay at the same price. I know it's a marketing gimmick, but I much rather have the quality I expect even at a higher price, rather than getting the same price but getting a lesser quality product.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

My BBQ turkey adventure.

I wanted to do BBQ turkey and I planned it so I was not responsible for the meal on Thanksgiving. So demon Murphy and I did battle today for Turkey on the BBQ grill.
3 and 1/2 hours prepping and cooking and it looks good. Small bird at 11.5 pounds
  1.  I  try thawing the turkey in the fridge for 2 days. Even this small turkey was as hard as a rock. the 3rd day I placed in a bucket of cool water and back into the extra fridge in the garage. Plan for at least 4 days for thawing a turkey.
  2. I did more of a marinade rather than a brine consisting of 1/2 gallon each water and a Apple juice, whole peppercorns, 4 Bay leaves and dried rosemary let it set 2 days. Drain the turkey pat dry and rubbed with olive oil, white pepper, sage and a little salt.
  3. Used a charcoal chimney for the first time and it worked great. No more dependence on lighter fluid! I also use mesquite chunk charcoal instead of briquets. I like the smoke flavor and how long it lasts and I don't care for the additives in briquets. Using your chiminy make a bed of coals and then push them to the outer edges of where you are cooking the bird. Under your bird you will want a drip pan to catch the fat and juices. You can add water, wine or beer about an inch deep to prevent flare ups. I added my homemade dark ale. You'll want the temp of the grill to maintain 325-350 degrees F. 
  4. For the first hour:  Breast is down and every 15 minutes you give the turkey a quarter turn, making sure you maintain temp and you drip pan keeps about 1 inch of liquids in it.
  5. 2nd hour: flip the turkey on its back do the same as the first hour but start basting every 15 minutes. I used a rosemary infused butter. This is the hour I needed to add 1 chiminey worth of coals. Place giblets and neck  in tinfoil and put over heat to cook
  6. 30 minutes left in cooking flip the turkey again on it's breast after basting and I didn't rotate it any more. Take neck out of giblet tinfoil and let it brown, flipping it over after 15 min. Give everything 1 last basting. 
  7. Turkey is done, use a meat instant read thermometer and you should be around 160 degrees internal temp. As the turkey rests it should cruise on up to 165 degrees and be good to go. 
  8. Rest the turkey at least 20 minutes for a small one and up to 40 minutes for a 20 pounds plus. This gives the bird time to reabsorb juices. This gives you time for gravy or any last minute touches for the meal. 
  9. I had a little smoke ring 1/10 of an inch below the skin and the Mesquite and dark ale imparted a little sweetness to the meat. Very tasty but I went kind of traditional/safe spices for my first try I think I will spice it up a little for the next turkey.
All in all I am pleased how it turned out. As the grill/smoker is one my backup cooking systems I learned I can maintain 325-350 degrees F.  I added flavor, freeded up an oven to do other foods. I'm thinking I could bake my Mac&Cheese in a dutch oven in the last hour. As this is an extra turkey I've got some family that want to try the BBQ version so I'll shred and slice some of the meat for them and myself and then cook the bones for stock. I got an idea for white/green chili.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Hope you had a good Thanksgiving! Now back to work.

    The Mac&Cheese was a hit at dinner and Mom asked for an extra bowl from the leftovers. I got about 1/3 of it left and since it could feed over 20 people and we had about 9 it went well. I was going to BBQ the turkey but I was wiped out from getting the leaves picked up so the timeline got pushed back on the turkey. I'm going to be puttering at cleaning up the house so it will be a good time to BBQ the turkey and see how it works out. If it turns out good I'll can it and share with Mom. If it's a bust I'll make stock and some dog and cat food.
   I got my big 5 gallon stock pots, the last 2 of that size and I planned for them to be my Beer brewers but I can see all kind of uses now that I have them on hand. While I was roaming the Family Dollar store I found some good sweatpants for $5.00 each and picked up a couple of pairs. They are Fruit of the Loom brand and the fabric is fairly heavy. Cotton looks like it may spike in cost so it's a good idea to get what you can, when you can at a low cost. I like having sweats for layering and staying warm in the winter.
    Not sure if the Lager beer experiment is working. I got it warmed up but still nothing in the bubbler. I popped the top on the bucket and if I'm understanding how lager should smell and work I may be okay.  I'll give it another week and bottle and hope for the best. The worse that can happen is it doesn't work and I'll stick with ales a while longer. I've been darn lucky that all of my brews have been good, so 1 bad batch would not be unexpected. We got another person on the block wanting to learn to brew beer. That gives us 4 housholds that could brew..

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Feeling much better today!

   I overslept and missed my walk with Mom. I must have need the extra sleep as I'm feeling much better today. One thing I have learned is not to get to stressed out when my body decides to have a mind of it's own. I spent a lazy day just reading and sitting around in pj's most of the day and had a really good nap. When I got up I felt good so checked the turkey to see if it was thawing. Nope! hard as a rock, got  one of my food safe bucket and put the turkey and some cool water for it to thaw back into my extra little fridge. Hopefully by tomorrow it will be ready to brine. I'm not providing the turkey for the family so I don't have any pressure on me so if things don't go as planned I'm okay.
   I'm still warming up the lager, 5 gallons of mostly water takes a while to warm up if you are only using ambient temperature so you don't kill the yeast. Right now my beer bucket looks as if it has a cold wrapped in a blanket with the heating pad.
     I wanted to do up some meat loaf using items you can easily have stored or if you need to cook them up quickly.  A frozen meat loaf freezes well and be reheated for sandwiches to cubed and added to soup. I am baking them in several different size pans from small tinfoil loaf  pan (8oz.), a small metal loaf pan (16 0z.) and a normal loaf pan that holds (1.5 lbs.) of meat each. Using different size pans lets you reheat a little or a lot. Still working on the spices as it tastes a little bland, but a good start. 
Meat Loaf
3 pounds of ground beef
1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes
4 eggs
1 3/4  cups panko crumbs
2 tsp. Kosher salt
1 tbsp. red pepper flake
1 tbsp. Dried onion
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp. White pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
I put the beef in my mixing bowl with the paddle start mixing. After the ground beef is broken up a bit I add tomatoes, eggs, spices . Mix about 1 minute or till thoroughly mixed and then add the panko crumbs. Mix to combine place in loaf pan and bake 45 minutes for the small pans, 1 hour for the regular loaf pan.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Not much done today, I feel as if I was beat with a large stick

    Just par for the course on hurting during weather changes. Once it settles down I'll be feeling much better. But a few things did get done even if I got a little help. The nieghbor came over and cleaned out my rain gutters. They were beginging to look like a very high, skinny planting bed. I'm hoping for a couple of warmer days and I can do some work on picking up the leaves. I picked up a couple of little space heaters,one for me and one for Mom at $11.00 each they are great for a little spot heat. Luckly I got them when I did as they were going really fast and the local hardware store wasn't sure if the supply truck would make it before they ran out. I got a chimney charcoal starter i had been wanting for a long time. I did not like being dependent on having starter fluid.
     I stopped by the beer lady as my Lager still hadn't started bubbling. She say not to worry it may need to be warmed up  for the yeast to get started. So she recommended I bring it up stairs and let it warm up a bit before I panic. She was also working on her new 1 gallon all grain kit, she'll be posting up the pics on her website soon.   I  need to get my Stock pots but I just wimped out, but manged to stop by the Lighthouse to give them a little cash for buying Thanksgiving supplies. I was going to pickup some food but I felt they had a better idea of their most critical needs.
At least I managed to get a few things done even if they were easy physically.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Being thankful and other stuff

   I seem to have collected a couple folks as follower to my little Blog. I've never stopped to thank you folks for stopping by and reading my little ramblings. I wish to correct that oversight now and thank you all. It's nice to know that folks get enough from my site to follow and that makes me feel that I'm making a small difference.
     You got to check out this post by Kris at  http://krissimplyliving.blogspot.com/2011/11/your-god-wont-poison-me.html
It really touched me and I feel that Kris is an old friend I just haven't met yet. We both are doing this prepping thing on the cheap and while I squeeze a penny hard enough to make Lincoln's eyes tear up. She has him screaming in agony.
   I got the turkey thawing in the fridge and batch of dark Ale is going into the bucket to ferment tonight. I got the Lager done but I'm kind of nervous. I know it's a longer and slower process but my little air lock is not bubbling. I'll check with the Beer lady and see if it's normal. I may have to re-pitch the yeast. I sure hope it's a simple fix, but if not I'll just chock it up to "Stuff Happens" and try again. I've been lucky so far as all my brews have turned out really good.
Family Dollar has 2-5 gallon stock pots on sale. I'm going to get  two of the 5 Gallon one for $15.00 each. Those pots will be great to have on hand for Beer making and I'll have a pot for making big batches of stock, soup and stew for my future canning adventures.
     I did not get the bacon canned like I hoped, but I 'm going to make a bunch of mini meat loaves and Mac&Cheese I can freeze Monday and perhaps I can combine that with keeping an eye on the pressure canner.  My sister has a friend that works at a local dairy and can get butter for about $1.00 per pound if we order $30.00 worth. So I've told her I'd be happy to get as much as possible. I can see how I could can up a years worth of butter at that price.
    I got my sister's birthday presents. She's had a  rough year but she's getting on top of all the work her daughter made for her. I wanted to get her a couple of items since she got both her deck and house cleaned up. For the deck a set of solar powered LED lights for decoration and for the house a little crystal of SpongeBob that lights up. She is on SSI so I wanted her to have something that won't impact her electric bill and these are great for this idea. I added batteries for lighting the crystal so she won't have to add batteries right away for the crystal.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

I am the 100% American

    I worked for min. wage and some times living on tips. I did not get foodstamps or handouts from the government. I joined the Army and got a descent wage and living that I chose to accept.  I paid my taxes, medicare and Social Security without qualm and now you want to call it an entitlement? or not fair that an E-6 gets 50%of base pay after 20 years (about $1200-1400 per month) + pay for Tricare. But a congress critter is paid $174,000 per year and after 5 years get a 100% pension and all benies of being a congress critter.  Do you know that medicare insurance part B costs at least $125.00 per month and is taken out of  SS? Every COLA adjustment for the last 3 years that I know of has been ate by medicare costs. So your seniors can't win against the bookeepers. They get no extra money toward food or energy costs because the Medicare premium rises in lockstep to th COLA. It's a book keepers gimmick. If I was paid SS in a static value like gold it would be a very different thing. Prior to 1971 gold had a value of about $35.00 per ounce. The average SS check was about $70-80.00 per month or about 2 oz. of gold per month. Without inflation I should get 2 oz. of gold worth of purchasing power almost $3000.00 per month on SS.  Yet I get less than half of that and must pay Medicare as well.
   The PTB's have inflated the money. The dime in 1964 that bought a gallon of gas will still buy a gallon of gas based on the silver content of a 1964 coin. It simply costs $3.00+ FRN's today to get that 1964 dime's worth of value. The cost of gas hasn't really changed it's still just a dime a gallon. But only in real metal and not paper. If you start thinking something tangible, something with real or lasting value I know it changed my whole mindset, I hope it can change yours. Start thinking in metals not to profit but as value traded for value. Is that bag of rice worth a 1/2 ounce of silver? Is that bag of meat worth a gram of gold? Your dollars are meaningless but what you can trade them for, be it silver, gold, meat, beans or rice can be priceless.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Crisis Fatigue and coming out of it.

    I'm constantly amazed how the PTB's have been able to keep all of the economies at least sputtering along.  It seems on an almost daily basis I think something could be the "Trigger event" and some how they muddle through and keep the economy going. I think it will make things worse in the long run but I also want more time for folks to wake up and get ready.  There is a part of me that just wishes the other shoe would drop and we could get to work getting out of this hole instead of just digging deeper.
    It sometimes wears me down and I get in a poopy mood. But I am getting better on pulling out of those funks with laughter, helping others in need and starting new projects. One of the big advantages of being ready is I'm in a win/win situation no matter what happens. I can set my goals for self-reliance and I'm always a winner because of the skills I have learned and in a bizarre way I'm thankful that this is happening as it motivated me to do for myself and teach others.
    So anyway on to the new projects I'm doing;  today I'm brewing up my first batch of Lager style beer. The temps in my basement are right at 60 degrees F. and my beer lady has a lager type yeast  that works good at that temp. The Beer Lady is also setting up a new kit for 1 gallon batches of beer made from whole grains as opposed to using Malt extract. This will let me try out brewing beer from scratch but I don't have to lose a  5 gallon batch if I screw up. I love a local shopkeeper who knows who I am and has new ideas and making it simple for me to try them out. It works out for her to make more money and for me because she's trying to make it easier for me to try new things. You don't get that kind of individual attention at your local Big Box Store.
    For helping other I have my shopping list for the guys at the Lighthouse. I'm getting a turkey, about 8 pounds of frozen veggies and 20 pounds of potatoes to help with their Thanksgiving dinner. I'm trying to make this a monthly part of the budget but it's still a new habit I'm trying to get and I almost wanted to let it slide this month to get goodies of my own.  But that is not the kind of person I want to be, so darn and shucks and perhaps a few other words to myself , I will keep that commitment.
    I got all the buckets cleaned,  flour and Doggie food are in them with DE to keep it fresh and bug free.
NY Strip is cut into steaks, double wrapped in the freezer. This weekend I'm canning some bacon and hamburger to see how they work out. I'm going with a wide mouth pint jar this time because I'd prefer to make 1 meal, 1 jar and not have to refrigerate after opening if I can avoid it.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Had a good day shopping

    Just got a couple of items at Cash & Carry as I swung by to pick up the short-term flyer. Bad news no flyers in stock but they did have one posted and 5 pounds of shredded cheddar cheese at $11.98 was to good to pass up. I'll break it down into smaller packages and store in the freezer. I shred my own cheese if needed but I saved almost $7.00 compared to a 5 pound block of cheese. This will work great for my mac and cheese and I want to do more end of week casseroles to use up leftovers. I also scored 50 pounds of flour for $5.00 because the bag was torn. I don't care I'll be storing it in a bucket. 
   I picked up a  12 pound  NY strip steak for $3.87 a pound. A little costly up front but I've been trying to lay in a good store of beef before rising prices really start to kick in.  I still want to get a 10 pound chub of burger for $18.90 and get it canned  Plus I found Cash & Carry has pork bellies. I get to try making my own bacon which should be fun and a good skill to have.
   I'll finish up the shopping Thursday getting some odds and ends like Ice melt, a few items at the dollar store and visit the beer lady and get the fixins for my first Lager type beer. I hope to have it ready in time for Xmas and I found a charcoal chimney for about $15.00 that's something I wanted for some time for my smoker/grill setup.
All in all a good day!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Home made Mac&Cheese

The neighbors had a get together and I had entirely to much fun. I made my first batch of Real Mac and Cheese and it turned out fantastic. I based the recipe on one I found in the Lodge cookbook "A Skillet Full" and all of the items were from the pantry.
2 pounds of cooked pasta(al dente)
1/2 cup of butter
1/2 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flake
1/2 teaspoon of dried garlic
32 oz. of UHT Whole milk
20 oz.  cheddar cheese shredded
10 oz Monterrey jack cheese shredded
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter over med. high heat  gradually add flour stir until smooth cook 2 min. constantly stirring, stir in salt, pepper, garlic and red pepper flake. Whisk in milk stir constantly while it cooks for 10 min. Slowly add 1/2 of the cheese until smooth. Remove from heat stir in pasta and top with remaining cheese and bake for 30 min.

This was a huge breakthrough for me cause I suck at sauces and gravies. I tend to get a little impatient and don't let the flour cook long enough to get rid of the doughy taste. This was a great recipe to practice getting down the sauce and you could easily add bacon, ham, tuna or even sausage and make almost a whole meal in 1 pan. I wanted to do something new with just my stored items and that could be vegetarian or expand for us carnivores.

   I want to get more practice at cooking new ways and trying new recipes as one of my goals. I get lazy and a little bit fearful to try new cooking ideas as I'm afraid it will turn out badly and I'll end up just tossing food away. But I have been gathering cookbooks and I do a good job following the basics of the recipes. This mac & cheese was just the confidence booster I needed to try new things.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Added a few to my blog list.

     I added ferfel's surviving in Argentina a very good site for what's happening in Argentina and a economic collapse. Plus, how government react in these situations.  SHTF school is written by someone that survived in Bosnia and a very fast collapse/war/siege 1992-1995.  They are writing in a second language so some of the words are a bit off or at least have some creative spellings but I think most of the info comes through and is understandable. 
    I think both of these sites will give you some ideas of what you need to prepare for, what they have done. It's not nice or pleasant, but they have been there and done it. It's not the made for TV survival we often get for info. I have Grandpappy's site up and his description of gangs/marauders seems to be accurate from what ferfal and selvo say happened to them. In a very broad sense.
    I know it sure gave me some new ideas to explore. Remember survival is a simple pass/fail process. you fail you die, a B+ is not good enough.  You can do everything right and die, you can do everything wrong and live. I am doing my best to stack the deck and loading the dice.. That's prepping and it's cheating, it's stacking the deck, it's thinking long term. It does not guarantee you live, just the odds are a bit more in your favor.  
  

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Observing #OWS part 2

    There seems to have been a shift in who is pushing OWS. The violent element seems tobe moving to the fore front. Several things I find strange is:
  1.   "mob" type violence is happening is cities other than Manhattan.  I mean the name is Occupy Wall Street but Oakland and Denver erupt? Plus several of the OWS folks were trying to stop the violence and were simply ignored if not openly mocked.
  2. I do feel a a bit sorry for some of these kids. They were told they were perfect and if they just did what they were told they would have a perfect life. Then reality smacked them upside the head and like a spoiled child they scream "It's not fair!"  I don't blame a spoiled 5 year old I blame the parents. But if your are still using that argument at 20+ years old I blame you.
  3. I also feel contempt for these people as well for not at least educating themselves on who/what  or simply define what the problem is, Banks don't own your student debt. The Government does, The colleges and univercities set the cost of education, not Wall street. Inflation is a function of the Federal Reserve, not Wall street. 
  4. The spread of disease is getting worse. Poor sanitation is a big culprit, but poor planning for shelter, heat and 1st aid have all played a part.
Enough ragging on the OWS folks and some things I see some knee jerk reactions from the tea party types.
  1. I agree with the Bank transfer day. But I saw quite a few sites that are more conservative that would not even consuder getting money out of a TBTF bank because OWS recommended. Heck even a broken clock is correct twice a day.
  2. I agree that student loans are basically debt slavery and has been for quite some time. Don't take out student loans, go to a local community college for the basic courses or get into the trades. Starve the Beast!
  3. I can no longer recommend the military as they are having all that they have worked for slowly taken away.
 Let's face it I'm fringe as a prepper, a small government and anti-crony capitalist. I don't have to agree with all the survival/preppers out there as I'm sure many don't agree with me. I am trying to get out of the knee jerk reaction when I read something I disagree with as to why I disagree or do I just disagree because the person is one of "them".  I go all over the internet to get info on alternate energy, gardening, finace, cooking and I can assure you that liberal and conservative are both representive. The one common theme tends to be self reliance for the sites that individuals actually do something for themselves.

    Wednesday, November 9, 2011

    SHTF practice how it's going so far.....

       I got some of it done, mostly lighter items and things not so physically challenging. I'm still in recovery mode from my flare so it is taking me longer than I would have wanted getting stuff done. For me the trick is to focus on what I did accomplish and not what I didn't get finished. I'll keep working on the things I wanted to get done for the next few days so I'll have them in place for my next test.
       A few of the things I did get done; cleaning the house with items that require electricity, i.e vacuuming, laundry, dishwasher ran and baking up 5 loaves of bread. I withdrew most of my cash and got a little cash buffer topped off the gas tank, bought up about 6 pounds of bacon to can this weekend, started a batch of amber ale(it'll be ready to bottle tomorrow). I picked up my Ice melt and 100 pounds of sand for any snow storms and I want to add a little weight to the back-end of my mini van and see how that works for winter driving.
        A few things I planned that didn't get done; moving the back up generator and giving it a good test run, I need to fill a couple of lamps and test out the kerosene heater. The Propane stove/oven still needs a good test, I have a potluck to go to this weekend and I think I'll do a homemade Mac & cheese and my propane oven will get a real test from boiling the water for pasta, making the cheese sauce to baking it off in the oven. All of the ingredients will come straight from the pantry!
        A brain cramp occurred while baking the bread as I somehow added twice the salt that the recipe called for and had all the dry ingredients mixing away when I realized what I had done. OOPS. So I divided the mix into 2 batches and added enough flour, sugar and shortening and hope for the best.  I saved the bread even if it was a bit of a stick save. Thankfully I realized what I had done before adding the yeast or water which made it a lot easier to fix. Actually the bread turned out really good,  I think I've been a little stingy using the Kosher salt and seems this batch tastes a bit better than most I have done in the past.
         Things I got done though I didn't plan them;  I bought several yards of fabric, a broadcloth and a flannel for the future. Joann's had a great sale on fabric and I got an additional 20% discount this week for being a veteran. So Mom and I went kind of crazy getting some fabric for the future. Friday I think I'll pick up some thread with my discount. I'm not sure what I'm going to do with what I have bought, but I have a couple of ideas. I  picked up some big foam pillows that were dropped in my alley.  They looked like something out of an RV and I let them set for a couple of days in case someone just lost them moving or dumped them. I picked them up and Mom wants to make a incline pillow/prop for her bed and these are perfect for that idea. If you have priced foam lately you can imagine the savings of getting (2) 3 ft. squares of 5 inch thick foam pieces for free.
         Did you do a test?  How did it go? I hope better than EAS test lol.  If you found out your strengths and weaknesses it was a good test no matter what how you did on it. I'd give myself a C- if it had been a real test I'd have been bad on the heavy lifting portion.  I would have survived though playing catchup for backups tested and ready to be used.
       
       

    Monday, November 7, 2011

    Practice SHTF

       I don't know if the EU  and MF global is the black swan event. It will take a bit or time for this to shake out. Most folks are reacting on fear and that's never a good thing at the TBTF level.The EAS emergency brodcast is happening the 9th of Nov. at 2 PM EST. An asteroid is passing inside tohe orbit of the moon and a Erthquakes in Oklahoma.
       I know that quite a few folks have been preparing because of and for "Natural Disasters" We have certainly seen quite a few of those in the last few years.  It is also a great reason to be ready because we have seen how quickly the Government slouches in to action. But I'm very concerned about a world wide economic collapse.
         I think you are aware that we have not been given accurate info from the PTBs or the Main Stream Media. I think they are full of stuff and nonsense! But they may also be trying to keep a lid on panic. If you don't have at least some basics of preparedness done you should feel slightly panicked as the world wide finical system is on the brink. I think panic is a rational reaction. It's just not a very helpful one for you. You need to make a cool, calm assesment of where you are in your preps and what more you need to get in a short time and with limited funds. Don't freak out! you just need to assess your biggest needs and prioritize.
      I am real good on the basics. Oh sure I've yet to meet a survialist/prepper who made 3 weeks think about 3 months to a a year. We are never quite satisfied but in a different way from being greedy but simply planing for our selves.  Like any hobby it builds on itself. I'm a bit stunned that folks think we prep we want the apocalypse and nothing could be further from the truth. I so want to be wrong on everything I've planned for. My preps will be just fine and dandy and ready to use at any time.
       The idea is you have about 24-48 hours notice and make sure you are ready.  Live off your preps, clean the house, wash the laundry, bake some bread, Make some meals that are easy to heat or reheat, test that generator. Fire up your lamps, top off your car, do you need anything from the store and have some cash on hand. Games, books. batterie ready to go and checked. You get the idea.... The government is testing you should do a test as well.

    Saturday, November 5, 2011

    I'm almost feeling human again so once more into the breach my friends

         I was totally wiped out on the 1st. I've been kind of a pussy not shopping on paydays and now I know why I avoid those days like the plague. I still want to get a little icemelt, sand, but I got the fixings for the next couple of batches of beer  so I started a batch of amber ale. My Beer Lady got a recipe for Lager/pilsner that will work down in my basement rather than having to ues the fridge. I'm excited to try it and see how it turns out.
        I'm just doing a little puttering around the house as I'm still feeling a bit worn out. I have to avoid days like the 1st so I don't get knocked down for days to follow. Sucks, but that's the nature of my disease for me.  I'm proud that I just stop and didn't try to do any more when I was so down. It's hard to think when your that wiped out and it is usually the time you need to think at your best. Sometimes the best answer is "Don't do something, just stand there".
      No shopping needed for the next month and half so I'm going to start cleaning up the leaves and add to the "Lasagna garden" I started last spring,  and get all the walnuts picked up and get more of the indoor garden started. My indoor citrus trees are growing well and need to be transfered to bigger pots. Oh I'll keep working the internet and see if I can get a great buy on something I need for the future and I will need to buy for the boys at the "Lighthouse" but I'm good for the rest of the year for shopping on basics.
       I think I'll sit down and sharpen all the knives in the house. I've been getting by just using a chef's steel. But I need to put a real edge back on the blades. Great job to do while having my brain rotted out by mindless TV. A very good puttering job. A little bit of bread baked and start on the Xmas baskets. After the yardwork is finished up it looks like all those little projects I've planned might get a little time dedicated to them.
        Have you planed to learn a new skill this winter? Or are you still catching up and trying to get ready for the Holidays?
      

    Wednesday, November 2, 2011

    I hate shopping on the first of the month! But I got most of it done

         In my local area Tuesdays are a Senior Discount day and as my Mom is 65 she will often take me shopping so I can get the discount of 10% on average. I know it's not a lot but every little bit helps, but everyone else is doing it and on the 1st of the month the stores are already busy with shoppers. I know a lot of folks have to shop when they get their checks as they are running low or are out of stuff, but I'm not one of those folks. I usually try to go shopping on Thursdays as they seem to be about the slowest shopping day. Needless to say I was absolutly wiped out by 1 PM but I did get 6 cans of tuna for under $3.00 and a really good buy on coffee 2 cans at $6.99 each. I had not planned on the coffee but I always keep a little flexabilty in the budget just for such items.
        Anyway I got home and was in no condition to make my shopping loop and get the rest of the shopping done. I got some rest and finished up getting my items in the evening. I got 20 cans of catfood for $5.00, 3 pounds of bacon at $2.19 that is labled ends and pieces but is mostly regular bacon strips and 5 more food grade buckets for $2.50 each. I still have a couple of items to get before the first snow but those items can be bought today.
    I did get my Yahtzee game though I bought in peices. 1 set of replacement score cards and a set of ten dice.
    Shopping takes a lot of energy so I try never to do mine when I'm so tired and worn out. Money is to valuable to waste simply because you are tired or don't feel well.
        Holding back on the major purchases for a little while until some of the stuff happening in the markets play out a little bit longer and hopefully settle down. If you have been using the economic sites on the blogroll you have a good idea just how screwed up the financials are through out the world. When some one like Paul Krugman starts getting antsy about bank runs it's probably a good idea to keep some extra cash on hand and in your pocket. I'm not predicting a bank run, I'm just saying it would not surprise me if it happened.

    Tuesday, November 1, 2011

    Snow in the forecast this weekend for SW Idaho

        I still need to get some additional salt for the walk to lay down before the snow hits. It helps a lot and works better to lay down the salt before the snow hits instead of after it is on your walk. I'm adding some sand to prep as it is better than kitty litter for traction for the car and much denser so having some extra weight in the vehicle, a good thing for winter driving.  Sand is also a great multi-tasker for future projects.
      While I have all electric heat and cooking,  I'm have a propane stove/oven,  a Mr. Buddy heater, extra propane tanks and a kerosene heater/ lamps and plenty of kerosene. 2 generators and plenty of gas to run for a couple of weeks. I'm still looking for a little battery powered fan I can add to my Buddy heater. Now that hunting season is starting to wind down I hope to pick up a fan on sale.I have emergency csandles But I lean towards flashlights for safety and kerosene lamps for quality of light given off. My solar power is not quite ready for Prime time but it's getting there slowly
        Flashlights have all been checked and extra batteries are on hand. Beverages made and popcorn ready to pop. Life is pretty darn good when you know! not just think you are ready. 
    Got a ton of books, need to check the charge of the laptop to play movies and games. I still need a yahtzee game.  I've covered painting with water colors, all types of card cames from pinocle to spade and poker. I should get on the internet and download and print out all the rules for card games I've played in the past. It's been awhile and I may be a bit shaky on some of the rules. Download some pictures for the kids that they can color, if electricity could be down for awhile. Crossword books are ready along with mechanical pencils. 
         Last but not least clean your home before the storm hits and take care of all chores that require power. Maybe it's vacuming , doing the dishes, laundry or baking extra bread. Git'er done before you have to ration power use.