To be prepared for a crisis, every Prepper must establish goals and make long-term and short-term plans. Steadily, we work on meeting our prepping goals. In this column, the SurvivalBlog editors review their week’s prep activities. They also often share their planned prep activities for the coming week. These range from healthcare and gear purchases to gardening, property improvements, and food storage. This is something akin to our Retreat Owner Profiles, but written incrementally and in detail, throughout the year. We always welcome you to share your own successes and wisdom in the Comments. Let’s keep busy and be ready! This week’s emphasis is on small arms mechanical training.
Dear SurvivalBlog Readers,
It was another quiet winter week at the Rawles Ranch. In addition to homeschooling and our regular chores, we did some review of practical skills. Part of this was re-familiarizing the kids on how to field strip and clean our M4gery carbines. Unlike the U.S. Army’s standard soldier-level field procedure, we also include removing the extractor. In the second practice session, we raced against each other. That was great fun for everyone. Lily even tried it with her eyes closed. She only had to peek twice.
Note: To avoid losing any of the small “fiddly bits” parts, we had them practice while seated on an old bed sheet spread on the living room floor. Out in the field, we do so over a spread poncho. (And yes, we do carry a few spare small part in our cleaning kits! (At the minimum: A spare firing pit retaining pin, cam pin, and a full extractor assembly–with pin.)
Lily cleaned out the chicken coop yet again this week. With the outside temperatures hanging around freezing and low forties during the past two weeks the coop becomes very damp and yucky much more quickly, so it is requiring more frequent cleanings.
Temperatures have consistently been above freezing inside our garden greenhouse. The various lettuces, spinach, and kale have been growing, but quite slowly. They’re still only a half inch to two inches tall. Albeit the spinach is beginning to put forth it’s secondary leaves. Lily is also continuing to prepare the spare room greenhouse, by laying down black plastic trash bags to protect the floor from moisture and by bringing in four busing trays filled with soil. These are the trays that she filled in anticipation of the spring planting, back in October. The soil has been allowed to warm up and Lily is contemplating what to plant in them, soon.
We have been enjoying reading comments from readers about your preps. Please keep them coming. – Jim Rawles
The Latimer Homestead is turning on a dime this week. Despite what you heard from Punxsutawney Phil this week, the warm weather is starting already. I’m thinking this may be the shortest winter I’ve seen in some time.
The shop is a fill-in-the-time sort of project so with the warmer weather, our focus shifted somewhat. Cleaning up the property took front and center for the outside based work and that led to reconsidering some of the waiting projects. Primary among those is a remodel of the kitchen. The kitchen has been due for an update for some time as the cabinetry is starting to show wear and tear and the oven is trying to retire. The kitchen is the heart of the home here and bringing it off-line is no easy task. If it doesn’t happen now, it won’t happen in the summer.
This week we started removing counter and open cabinet contents, cleaning and boxing things that we don’t immediately need. Once that is finished, Hugh will start working on the ceiling, making repairs and updating the support beams, then repainting. We expect that work to take a good portion of the week since we can’t completely decommission the kitchen while we live here. The changes should brighten up the kitchen, which is currently pretty close to a dungeon right now. Once that is accomplished, we’ll start on repairs to the cabinets, though that may be a next week project.
o o o
As always, please share your own successes and hard-earned wisdom in the Comments.