Editors’ Prepping Progress

To be prepared for a crisis, every Prepper must establish goals and make long-term and short-term plans. In this column, the SurvivalBlog editors review their week’s prep activities and planned prep activities for the coming week. These range from healthcare and gear purchases to gardening, ranch improvements, bug out bag fine-tuning, and food storage. This is something akin to our Retreat Owner Profiles, but written incrementally and in detail, throughout the year. Note that as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. We always welcome you to share your own successes and wisdom in the Comments. Let’s keep busy and be ready!

Jim Reports:

I only did one prepping project at the ranch this week:  Building extensions for a couple of raised beds in our greenhouse with Lily.  This raised them 6 inches, allowing them to be covered with salvaged window panes. (We’ll probably get that glass from the Habitat For Humanity salvaged building materials store.) This should provide a better “greenhouse within a greenhouse” effect than we achieved last winter. Thankfully, rough cut red cedar is very inexpensive in our region, so I generally keep a pile of it stacked in random lengths and widths, for various projects around the ranch. In this case, that lumber pile saved me a trip to town. To paraphrase: “Two is one, One is none. But a stack really comes in handy.”

So that I’ll be ready to launch my Internet-based business in 2020, I’ve been busy buying antique guns, some ammunition, and a few accessories.  I’m also doing the preliminary work of searching for a gun-friendly credit card processor, buying a domain name, and creating a web site. This has consumed a lot of my available time. Creating the new business — Elk Creek Company — is already a large undertaking.  Just finding quality pre-1899 cartridge guns that meet my standards is time-consuming and difficult. This is because less than 1% of the guns in circulation are Federally antique. In fact, most of the advertised “antique” guns on the market are better described as simply “old”, but not true pre-1899 antiques. So searching through online auction listings is often frustrating, and again, time consuming. In essence, I’m looking for a few needles in a haystack. There have been some busy days when I’ve scarcely had time to keep the wood box full, and conduct our regular weekday family Bible studies.

This weekend, I’m attending a gun show in Lewiston, Idaho. I’ll be lucky if I return to the ranch with two or three nice antiques for the Elk Creek Company inventory. Oh, by the way, if any of you readers have any antiques that you’d be willing to sell or trade, then please e-mail me. Note that with some models, I’m willing to buy restored, re-lined, or sporterized guns.

I have literally hundreds of magazines available to trade. I’m also willing to trade silver for antique guns. In particular, I’m looking for:

  • Remington-Lee .45-70 military rifles. (Not the later civilian production.)
  • Magazine Lee-Metford .303 rifles clearly dated 1898 and earlier.
  • Magazine Lee-Enfield .303 carbines marked MkI with NO STAR (Not a MkI*)
  • S&W brand Top Break revolvers. Mainly looking for .38 and .44 caliber. I will consider .32 S&Ws only if they are in truly minty condition, and reasonably priced. For S&Ws, I’m a buyer of:

.32 S&W safety hammerless with serial # below 91,400

.38 S&W safety hammerless with serial # below 119,900

.32 S&W with hammer with serial # below 209,301

.38 S&W with hammer with serial # below 382,022

.38 S&W spur trigger top break revolvers. (All are pre-1899)

.44-40 or .44 S&W Russian single action or double action top breaks (all are pre-1899)

  • Forehand & Wadsworth .38 S&W and .44 S&W Russian revolvers.
  • Forehand Arms top break .38 S&W revolvers with serial #s below 90,000.
  • Merwin-Hulburt .38 S&W and .44-40 revolvers
  • Remington 1875 and 1890 .44-40 and .45 Colt revolvers
  • Remington Model 1871 & 1891 Rolling Block Pistols in centerfire
  • Webley Mark I or Mark II top break revolvers in .455 Eley or .45 ACP
  • Colt M1891 to Model 1896 in .38 Colt or .41 Colt revolvers with serial # below 115,000
  • Colt M1873 Single Action Army in .44-40 and .45 Colt revolvers with serial # between 165,000 and 182,000
  • Colt M1878 Double Action in .44-40 and .45 Colt with serial # below 41,000
  • Marlin Model 1877 Double Action revolvers in .38 S&W (all are pre-1899)
  • Swedish Mauser M1894 or M1896, only if clearly dated 1898 or earlier on receiver ring. I also buy sporterized Swedes, if nicely done, and priced right!
  • Chilean Mauser M1895 rifles, short rifles, or carbines only if marked MANUFACTURA LOEWE BERLIN. I also buy sporterized Chileans, if nicely done, and priced right!
  • Spanish Mauser M1895 rifles, short rifles, or carbines only if clearly dated 1898 or earlier on receiver ring, or if marked MANUFACTURA LOEWE BERLIN. I also buy sporterized Spanish Mausers, if nicely done, and priced right!
  • Brazilian Mauser M1894 rifles, short rifles, or carbines marked MANUFACTURA LOEWE BERLIM.
  • Original U.S. Krag rifles or carbines with serial number below 152,670. I also buy sporterized antique Krags, if nicely done, and priced right!
  • Finnish M39 rifles. Please do not contact me offering to sell a M39 unless you have digital photos showing a date between “91” and “98” clearly marked on the tang!
  • Schmidt-Rubin Model 1896/11 rifles with serial # below 236,500
  • Winchester Model 1873 in .44-40 with serial # below 525,923
  • Winchester Model 1886 in .45-70 or .45-90 with serial # below 119,193
  • Winchester Model 1890 (.22 WRF) with serial # below 64,521
  • Winchester Model 1892 in .44-40 with serial # below 165,432
  • Winchester Model 1894 in .30-30, 38-55, or .25-35 with serial # below 147,685
  • Winchester Model 1895 with serial # below 19,872 (“slab side” M1895)
  • Winchester Model 1897 12 gauge shotguns with serial # below 63,633


Avalanche Lily Reports:

Dear Readers,

My, my, we have had a very interesting and busy week.  Besides the usual schooling of Miss Violet, animal chores (cleaned the chickies’ box twice this week. They are really growing very fast and all are completely feathered out.  They are a beautiful mix of different types of chickens or their miniature versions. Jim bought them grain and and the horses wet cob that should last us until February at least.). I did a lot household chores such as cooking, laundry, dishes, vacuuming and washing floors, bathrooms, etc. Hey, it’s the mundane stuff that keeps a home happy, clean, and functioning smoothly. : )

Miss Eloise loves writing short stories.  I spent some time reading a excerpt of one of hers, editing and critiquing it.  She has an excellent command of words.  I enjoyed reading it very much. We have been researching some possible further schooling and work opportunities with Miss Eloise, working on her resume, and counseling on how to approach potential employers. For now, she is a serious homebody who enjoys studying that of which she is interested in, and applying it to her writing.  She loves studying Ancient British/Gaelic languages, British/Irish and American history,  and culture, and seafaring/sailing. She is excellent in defending our faith/apologetics, and is very interested in defending our freedoms in this country.  So we shall see how the Lord leads her in the next year or so.

Miss Eloise caught some cabin fever at 7:30 PM one evening.  Therefore in the dark and rain, with flashlights, she and I, went mountain biking all around our property for about an hour.  Fun, cold and wet! The stuff that memories are made of!  😉

Starting Saturday evening we are going to start a two week period of intermittent snow storms which look as though we could have up to two feet of snow by December 6th, Yeah!  Therefore we did a bit more yard clean up and preparation for heavy snows, such as I gathered up the last few hoses and then went to the area where our hoses are stored. I rolled up each hose making sure that it was drained of water and ready for winter storage.  One hose had become brittle and was thrown out.  I pulled a few hoses into the greenhouse to have quick access to them anytime we might need one during the winter.  We do need them sometimes to water the animals from the house.

The girls walked through our forests collecting the last of the fallen pine cones for kindling.

I cleaned up more manure from our big beasties, from around the ranch, and added it to the Annex and Expansion gardens.

Jim and I, together, also burned most of the weeds and grass in a section of the Annex garden with our propane weed burner, fueled with a twenty pound tank of propane. I cleaned out the ash from our wood stove and spread that on the Annex garden.

I also helped Jim build the framework to add height to two of my raised beds in the greenhouse.  My job was to help square the corners while Jim power screwed in the screws. Then I helped him carry them into the greenhouse and layed them upon the beds.  I will be letting the soil in one of these beds freeze until February.  One of the beds is growing our greens for the winter until the heavy frost kills them — if it does?

I washed out all of our buckets, about eight of them, stainless steel and plastic, to be ready for filling up with water before snow storms arrive.  We often lose power for a few days at a time and therefore lose access to running water.  The water is used for drinking water for the chickens and cats, (cows and horses have two water tanks that are topped off before every storm, and they have access to a creek and river if they choose to walk out to them through the snow) and flushing and dishes, etc. Just before a storm we also, fill about six glass gallon and half gallon jars with water for drinking and cooking, hand washing, etc.

I scrubbed out our work sleds, getting them ready for work in the snow.

I made a simple Pulk sled for pulling gear while snowshoeing or cross country skiing for snow camping or whatever.  I used a child’s plastic Toboggan and I used Brooke Whipple’s simple sled design. Remember, I’m not going on any long term expedition, that I know of? ;). Therefore we don’t need the expensive version with grommets, etc.

Miss Eloise queried me, “Mom, How come you are so motivated to do this hiking and camping gear stuff when it’s winter? Why don’t we do this in the summer?”  My response was, “Well this past summer, the days were usually consumed by gardening, weeding, harvesting, preserving, guests, mosquitoes, and this summer, a health scare that turned out not to be anything, thankfully.”  The days are very long in the summer, early to rise and very late to bed. We’re usually too tired by the end of the day to think about anything else, let alone organizing for a hike.  But winters here are quiet and sedentary.  I’m more rested to want to think about doing Cross Country skiing and winter camping–though we have yet to winter camp.

When the sled was finished, I packed it with my gear, and except for food and water, it is ready to go.  We’re just waitin’ for the snow to fall, now!! 😉  Did I ever tell you that I love to play in snow?

After I knew what I was doing, I had each of the girls make their own Pulk sleds. Showing them how to use the drill and then letting them go at it. Since we lack storage space for fully assembled Pulk sleds we left them in parts so that we can use them for playing, too. We will keep the rope and carabiners nearby the Pulk sled parts for a quick assembly when we need them.

We brought our garden and lawn machines to a shop to be serviced for this next summer’s use.

In case we ever lost access to gasoline, I bought two broad fork garden tillers from Amazon.  I will use these instead of the rototiller to till our soil in a grid-down situation.  I will be using them this next summer, also.

Dear Readers, concerning my article of Winter Indoor Gardening, that was published Tuesday, thank you so much for your many encouraging comments of your successes, experiences and solutions with insect invasions. We all are benefiting from each other’s experiences.

I have treated the plants in the bedroom greenhouse with dish soap water, while still awaiting on the arrival of the Neem oil.  Sadly, though, my peppers succumbed to a frost on Tuesday night, before I could treat them with soapy water and Neem oil. I didn’t get to them with soapy water because too many other things were happening on Tuesday. So I pulled them and composted them. The celery and parsley experienced the frost, but I put those into the greenhouse, after the frost and sprayed them with the soapy water.  We’ll see how the fare during the next few days. I have sprayed them again and have crushed some more aphids that I saw.

In the bedroom greenhouse, I’d like to report that the French green beans are now producing beans and the cucumbers are already flowering!!!!  This is after just five weeks of growing in the house!  The speed of growth and flowering just doesn’t happen out in the garden or the greenhouse in the summer, here!  I am surmising that it’s because in the house the light is on a steady 12-15 hours per day, and probably most importantly, we don’t have huge temperature swings in the house at night, like we do outside!! Our house temperature ranges between 70-90 degrees, because of the wood stove. We often open windows in the winter to cool us down. In the summer, outside, we have 40-50 degree temperature swings and in the greenhouse the temperature swings are even larger since the temperatures can get up to 120+ degrees and down to 55 degrees at night. These temperature changes are an important variable to try to mitigate in greenhouses in the north, in mountainous or desert regions in particular, with coverings for night times.

I did burn/steam about five gallons of my garden soil (to sterilize it) from the soil in the pepper plants pots over a campfire this week.  I then left the soil out afterwards in freezing temperatures to cool off and freeze before putting it into a large planter.  I left it out on the porch to experience more nights of freezing temperatures.  I have yet to finish washing and sterilizing the windowsill planter trays that I want to to put the sterilized soil into and replant.  All in good time…

I am also interested in continuing the conversation concerning growing indoors and/or under cover of green houses and the like, and the Global Solar Minimum.  I, too, listen to David Dubuyne at Adapt 2030, Christian at Ice Age Farmer, sometimes Diamond at Oppenheimer Ranch project. I wish he’d keep the foul language and saying the Lord’s name out of his orations.  If he did, I would listen to him a lot more often.  He has a lot of interesting things to add to this conversation.  I enjoy listening to Suspicious Observers.  I have listened to Yanasa Ama Ranch.  He has excellent information, but is a little bit too wordy and long winded for my attention span.

This week Adapt 2030 was talking about farmers already switching to cold weather crop growing, moving from growing wheat to barley.  Ice Age Farmer is talking about a serious sugar shortage beginning this year.  Basically between Canada and the USA, 48 percent of the Sugar beet production was lost due to beets freezing in the ground before being harvested this fall.  The sugar companies are unable to meet their contracts and are calling it a force majure.  If I were you, and you like sugar, I’d stock up on it.  We have been buying some extra.  Not that we eat a lot of sugar, but, if we help people during an SHTF situation, they would like some sweet foods, especially if we’re working very hard.  Plus it’s a great preserver of fruits in jams, etc.

Suspicious Observers has an hour plus long report on periodic earth catastrophes, titled “Cosmic Disaster”  That you all should  watch. Miss Violet and I watched it, after first reading Isaiah 24, which explains what the Very Last Days will look like.

I just wish to say that I believe what God says will happen in the Last Days is true and will happen. To me all of these scientists and people who are studying these potential catastrophic scenarios all have part of the truth. They are just confirming the Word of God and are putting more meat on the bones in terms of information and what to expect and how and why what God has said will happen, will happen. I think it’s very interesting.

Even more important than this, is that many people of God are prophesying that there isn’t much  more time left to prepare and they are saying that we need to stock on food, water, warm clothes, blankets, medical, communication equipment, etc.  But all this preparation isn’t just for us and our families but is for us to share with the people that God is going to send to us. His people who could not stock up or had to flee their homes because of disasters. We need to be praying and asking God to give us discernment of hearing of his voice clearly, so we will know when he is telling us to take in someone or to send them on. We need to be in the Word so we know God’s ways, clearly.

We also need to be ready to survive without being able to buy or sell, because when they do away with cash and go digital, this will require a chip to hold all of your banking, medical, credit card, information, everything, this is the “Mark of the Beast” .  You won’t be able to buy or sell without it.  But all who receive it are damned forever, forever separated from God the Loving Father.  So then, pray about whom you should speak to about preparing. We have a friend, whose adult child has not prepped and this child was brought up prepping.  The “child” said, “Dad, God told me very clearly not to prep.  God said that we will be fleeing our home with just the clothes on our backs (hopefully with a Bugout Bag), but that he will lead us to a safe a place of refuge.  So why should I prep if it’s all going to be destroyed and I won’t be able to use it?I will be disobeying God.”

So then in light of this word, some us who know we are to be prepping, need to be asking God if He will be having us to be offering shelter for those of His children who must flee cities, and then prepare accordingly.  If we stock up, it may not be just for you.  But this takes a wise and discerning heart, a prayerful heart.  Ask God to show you and prepare you for the work that He will have for you to do in the days to come.  Remember it is He who gives you the wisdom, understanding to know what is coming in the future. It is He who gives you the resources and finances to stock up.  Stock up on Bibles to give to anyone, who needs one.  I believe that there will be mass movements of displaced people in the coming days.

I like to listen to Mary at God’s Handmaiden.  I don’t necessarily agree with some of what she says, but she encourages me and spurs me on in the Word and preparing and has given me a few more thoughts and ideas to consider and pray about.

If you have any thoughts, ideas, insights or suggestions on any of these subjects, please share them with us.

May you all have a very blessed and safe week.

– Avalanche Lily, Rawles

o o o

As always, please share your own successes and hard-earned wisdom in the Comments.


  1. Weather returned to normal winter temps this week and makes it much easier to work outside with the animals. I respect you northern homesteaders for braving the bitter cold, snow and spring flooding; did it when I was young, but now I prefer milder temperatures.

    Busy week of putting up food; canned beef broth, vegetable beef soup, kale, jalapeno peppers and some turkey drippings. FD lemons, oranges, zukes and sweet peppers, celery and mixed veges. Cooked a 16 pd turkey but only got 9 pds of meat to FD, so I got another one at $0.59/pd. That will be next week’s work.

    Ordered a bag of mixed spouting seeds and broccoli sprouting seeds which I read have the highest nutrient value in sprouts. Because of the broccoli seed size I have to use jars instead of my sprouting trays, so I got a few more drain lids to use more bottles at one time.

    May you have a safe and productive week.

    1. Lily and Animal House,

      This statement, “We all are benefiting from each other’s experiences.” Lovely. one of the reasons I recommend SB to friends. We have an online village where we share many things. I am grateful.

      I’ll offer you a quote I found today:
      “I’m trying to embody that phrase attributed to St. Francis: ‘Preach the gospel at all times; if necessary, use words.'”

      Carry on

  2. Lily’s comments brought a question to mind.

    Does anyone know of a seed company/catalogue that specializes in cool weather, short growing season varieties of standard vegetables?

    1. https://www.johnnyseeds.com/ is based in Maine which has the far northern climate with long summer days and cool, growth-slowing nights similar to the American Redoubt. All their seed is non-GMO, some hybrid, some straight organic. I’ve had great success with their seed. They do a lot of research and development of new strains. They were recommended to me by my local northern Idaho Master Gardeners.

      Another favorite is https://irisheyesgardenseeds.com/ . Highly recommend for top quality.

  3. It was a pretty decent week here. A local store had a great sale on shelving so I bought and assembled a few shelving units to help organize all our stuff. Our storage looks so much better now. I also finished writing up my first article for Survialblog. Its being proof read now and I hope to submit it next week. Its looking like the weather is supposed to stay nice the first part of next week, so I’m hoping to finish a couple of projects before spending Thanksgiving with the family.

  4. As the weather turns, so do the projects! With winter we switch to indoor work and this year that means more remodeling of the house. But there is always the preparation work going on as well.
    This week we started moving things into our new storage containers of choice, the Plano Sportman’s Trunks. They come in three sizes, including a footlocker size, are stackable, lockable, have tie-down points, and are pretty weather tight – we’ve left one in the rain for several days and not a drop of moisture made it inside. So 90-day medical supplies were packed this week, emergency evacuation boxes for the vehicles were packed, stacked and labeled in the garage and the filled boxes were stenciled for identification.
    I also replaced the skid shoes on the snow plow this week. They have been back-ordered for 3 months (!) but finally came in so they are installed and adjusted and the plow is ready to go. I ordered three sets of shoes but only has come in – so we still have none in back-up supply.
    We watched a pretty good video about the Mexican drug cartels and the LeBaron’s (the LDS family ambushed) and their long-standing feud. This was made before the attack and shows how long the family, and others like them, have been targeted by the cartels. Remember these folks are still missing _12_ family members from the ambush! If you are interested in the video it is at https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/7bedeb/the-mexican-mormon-war-part-1
    Also this week, I added a small fireman’s ax to our vehicle kit, purchased some “lifeboat rations” in lemon and cinnamon flavors to taste test, and today we are going over the load plans on our roll-out boxes.
    And there is always the reading and studying of course. I started the Hillsdale College online class about the US Constitution this week and wrapped up a study focused on “What is my Purpose?”, first six chapters of Genesis was just the beginning (no pun intended).
    We also painted the living room, dining room and half the kitchen this week!
    Tip of the week: you can wrap about 40 inches of duct tape around a mini-Bic lighter in about 10 minutes while talking or watching TV or sitting with a hot drink at the end of the day.

  5. Most of our time is being spent working (a real blessing!) and preparing the house for the holidays and company. We actually have company coming and our grown children around this year. Enjoying every minute of these blessings. I wonder how many Christmases we will have with the luxuries we have now. I plan to enjoy every moment and the joy of a lit tree at its finest. These memories may have to last us through some interesting times that might be coming. Enjoy and appreciate the present while preparing for the future is my thought.

    Today I’ll be putting up a pumpkin and making pumpkin soup. Since we only have one this year, I’ll freeze the meat. Pumpkin meat is easy to dry, but my family doesn’t like it so I’ll just make pumpkin soup to freeze which I love. They do like the roasted seeds.

    I ordered blackout curtains and will be able to have two rooms at the back of the house secured.

    Since I couldn’t garden this year, I’ve been on the lookout for extra veggies to dehydrate. Today I’ll start a tray of peas. So easy to use rehydrated or just tossed into soup. Frozen veggies are still reasonably priced at times.

  6. Spent a good amount of time canning spuds.The yams are next and then cabbage.We rolled up put away all of the hoses that are laid from the well head out into the woods.
    Granny finished knitting the last pair of wool mittens for our friends and is working on patching up my slippers.
    The twenty year old ATV got a new starter and wouldn’t you know it the same day the newer
    ATV starter took a dump.Its always something.
    We made a Costco run to pick up a bag of dry pinto beans to put up in one pound meal saver bags, also 40 pounds of sugar.
    Granny was looking for some new books for her winter reading stash. We need a new toaster but Costco has ones that are made in China so that’s not an option.
    Speaking of Costco.The other day I saw a list of companies that are anti second amendment
    and Costco was on it. There was no ampliefieing information.Just a list.
    If anyone has any details on that please responed

    1. From Costco’s own website:

      “Costco policy prohibits firearms to be brought into the warehouse, except in the case of authorized law enforcement officers.”

      “Costco does not believe that it is necessary for firearms to be brought into its warehouse stores, except in the case of authorized law enforcement officers. For the protection of all our members and employees, we feel this is a reasonable and prudent precaution to ensure a pleasant shopping experience and safe workplace. Our policy is meant to protect our members and employees in all warehouses around the world. This is not a new policy and we do not customize the policy for each individual city/county/state/country where we doing business.

      Our primary goal at Costco Wholesale is to keep our members happy. If you believe that our policy restricting members from bringing firearms into our warehouse stores is either unfair or excessively burdensome, or you cannot agree to abide by this policy, or you are dissatisfied for any other reason, Costco will promptly refund your annual membership fee in full.”

      For what it’s worth I shop at Costco and conceal carry there every time. My only other choice is Sam’s Club which has a crappier position on the 2nd.

      1. I guess that its an ugly sign of the times that we live in.Large corporations must not be able to understand that a maniac with a gun will enter their stores and open fire with no regard for the rules or regulations,just because they want to.
        I’m pretty sure that we can buy anything that Costco sells at other stores.Maybe not in as large quantities but everything should be available,
        Citi Bank with the Costco Anywhere VISA Card is also on the anti second amendment list.
        Losing the business of one customer will mean nothing to Costco or Citi Bank.
        To me it’s a matter of principle and be for others.

    2. NormlChuck,

      For many years, Costco has been anti-Second Amendment. Since they are a membership club, they do not need to post their policy at the store/club entrance doors in any state. Instead, buried way down deep, in small fine print on their website, is their policy of no firearms allowed in their stores/clubs except by uniformed, on-duty law enforcement officers. When you join and pay your dues, you are agreeing to their terms and conditions. If is your responsibility to read and abide by said rules.

      Word went out about that many years ago, after a gentleman, who was carrying concealed but got careless while reaching for something, was spotted by another member who saw the offending inanimate object, freaked but was in control enough to find an employee and tell them, who passed on the information to the service desk, who called the local constabulary, who showed up and evacuated the store. The poor guy who was the subject of all this excitement, exited the store with everyone else. As he did so, the police yelled at him, said to halt, put his hands on his head – the usual. Of course, he had no idea they were yelling at him, didn’t know why, didn’t react fast enough to make them happy or feel safe, and got shot – dead.

      We had been members of many years at that point, since they were called Price Club. When we got the information, my DH started doing his due diligence by calling the store, calling corporate, being told to check their website, and reading the ENTIRE site until he finally found the clause in question, buried really deep into the website. We cancelled our membership that day and joined Sam’s Club the next time we were in town and driving by one. Have not stepped foot inside a Costco since.

      I will say that, when we were working with volunteer law enforcement, I went into Costco stores, in uniform, openly armed, several times and was greeted and treated politely, even more so than as a regular citizen. Never had a problem. But principles being what they are, and discretion being the better part of valor, since we both carry concealed all the time, we left Costco. I am hoping that Sam’s and Walmart don’t decide to jump on the bandwagon and ban firearms in their stores. Of course, here in Texas, that might not be a very wise business move, but Bentonville will do what they want, now that Sam Walton has passed on and, apparently, his kids aren’t quite as savvy about the local political climates around the country as he was.

      I hope that answers your question.

  7. I think you might be onto something Lily, with your observations about the “house garden” growing so much faster as it’s warm both day and night inside the house. When I was growing a garden at a school in Israel last year I was astounded by how fast some of our veggies grew. I think that it was likely due, as you suspect, to higher night time temps than we would usually experience in the “North Country”. So if it was an 80 degree day there, between the urban island “heat sink”, the nearby Mediterranean and just an overall lower difference in day to night temps, the growing process was enhanced. Here in the far north, even if the day is warm and sunny we usually need to wear a sweater at night as it’s quite cool; not the case there.

    When I have a garden again here I’m planning on experimenting by using row cover at night on one section of crops that I normally don’t keep covered, and not on the adjacent section of the same crop. Then I’ll look to see if there’s a difference in growth between the two. Perhaps I’ll even try using a double thickness of row cover at night. I like the idea of being able to speed up the plant growth(and harvest) while using no extra supplemental heat.

    I’d like to know more about what Ice Farmer is saying but I really really hate podcasts(and videos); so far I’ve just not gotten into it. I prefer to take in my info by reading. May have to try to do it anyway.

    Not much prepping going on here as I’m still a nomad. Did pick up extra batteries, some food such as pasta, oatmeal, coffee and sugar and my order of N-95 dusk masks(useful for house renovation, barn clean-up and the occasional mega disaster). I also went to the sock sale which is a local 2 weekend a year mega sale here at the company which makes Darn Tough socks. I wear nothing but their socks. Bought some more for me(merino blend hikers) and some for a holiday present for my son. The savings on these is incredible; met people who have come to it from New Jersey today. Heard about a woman who came from Virginia. If I gotta go through the apocalypse, I want to do it wearing their socks! 😉

    1. Dear Ani,

      I don’t know what to say concerning Darn Tough socks. We buy them, love them, wear them. But they last only a year on our bony feet. The balls of our bony feet wear through them lickety split. I have sent many back with holes in the balls of the foot of which they have gladly replaced. But my question is, ethically speaking, how long should I do that for?? We are about to send back, maybe, the third set of replaced socks from the originally bought socks. Every year I send back 4-6 pairs, honestly worn through. Their policy is great for us, but not great for their business, with our feet. This is my honest dilemma with them.

      1. I have no idea how you manage to wear those out! 😉 I kinda sorta wore through the heel on my absolute favorite pair after wearing it for years! And it didn’t even have a hole- just a little thin at the back of the heels. I buy mine as “irregulars” at the factory sale at deep discount so the lifetime warranty doesn’t apply but they’re still awesome. You must have some unusual feet! Maybe the factory should use you to come up with an even better type of construction!

        Have you tried the hiker type with the padded sole and heel?

    2. Lucky woman, Ani. Living near the Darn Tough socks factory. That might be worth a long road trip someday. Ever since James recommended Darn Tough on this site, I ask my sweet spouse to buy me a couple pair for Christmas. I have so many now and they seem to last forever so I’ll have to ask for something else. BTW, when she get me a couple pair, she gets herself some. We love ’em.

      Carry on

  8. To the fellow who said God said not to prep because he would have to flee and leave it all behind, I would recommend he establishes several places away from where he is living, to store his stuff. He should get to know several other preppers where he can store the basics. Put a nice storage shed on their property and fill it up. If he does not arrive there, and if forced to go to another place has he supplies, then that friend can use that stuff. He may also get an old moving van, a 1 ton flatbed, or 20 foot van with a trailer, and old motor home, and store stuff in there as well. He might use that to get to his friend’s place where he has more supplies. It is an alternate plan, that even those with establish homesteads should also have. We could have it all, yet loose it all to an unexpected event.

    Where there is a will, there is a way. Where there is no will, there is no way. And for those who believe they cannot afford to prep, it could be that priorities need to be changed. Although I am dirt poor, with emphasis on ‘dirt’, the Lord as been faithful in amazing ways, and out of the blue, like a bolt of lightening, He provides. And I am thankful. Although my income is certainly less than 5K and often less than 3k, I am far better prepared than most. It does require sacrifice and discipline. Yet mostly faith. I am not bragging, but being honest, and by example, hope to demonstrate that what appears to be impossible is possible. Focus on it like a laser beam and get it done. Stick with the basics. Cut out of your life that which is not essential. Get tough with yourself. Pray and ask for Him for the necessary provisions, and that He would choose your friends, and find a safe place for you.

    Mindset is key. It is developed though action. I would be more generous to those who have striven hard to prep, and made sacrifices, than to those who had better things to do and decided to enjoy the comforts and illusions of this world, rather than take His Word seriously. Why? Because they have the correct mindset and will be an asset, and not waste precious supplies, or be an encumbrance. Someone with out the right mindset, might actually be dangerous to those around them. Unintentionally of course, and only in certain instances. The Lord is looking for warriors, not wimps. It is not a salvation issue. Yet one must live by faith now. And as a warning, the irrational, and the all consuming type of fear is Satan’s fiery darts, and is destructive to your life. Fear is a useful emotion that should not be ignored. It can motivate, but it should not consume you. Eventually fear is not apart of your daily life, but a temporary and fleeting thing. We need not fear. And should not do so continuously.

    I also believe that even with the mark in place, I will be able to trade with a few I can trust, who have taken the mark. For example, if they have work to be done, I would accept gasoline, a chainsaw, or other such in lieu of cash, or money. For example if we agree that the chainsaw is worth $100, I will work at an hourly rate until I’ve earned it. I already to do this with some people, and more frequently. They often prefer to trade stuff than use cash. Often I get a bargain, and trade that item off for something else. I could also ask them to pick up particular item I need as a part of the trade. Instead of paying myself, they pay. Get to know them now, and practice this now to build trading partners, or a customer base. It works.

  9. BTW, I would be interested in any 6.5×55 antique rifle in any condition, including only a barreled action in rough condition. Don’t care if it is pitied with rust, I’ve got a new barrel for it, but the action must be serviceable.

  10. Lily, we also find that this time of year often brings more opportunities to get outdoors. We did a large family camping trip over veterans day weekend on the far northern tip of the Oregon coast. The campground was incredibly full of folks who had similar ideas. It rained for most of our time but with good rain gear, we all had a great time exploring the area.

    We are also still trying to finish fall chores. We defrosted two of our chest freezers, cleaned them and took inventory to ensure we know what we have. Similarly, we have been organizing our short and long term food storage, weeding out any jars that have gone bad and taking a new inventory so that we can resupply what is needed.

    Outdoor chores continue as well. We did not get to all of our growing beds yet so we are working one bed at a time weeding and preparing them for winter. This is always a multi-step process that finds us weeding, raking leaves, building and turning our compost pile, spreading wood ash and covering the beds with either a cover crop or mulch.

    I have been following Ice Age Farmer on a regular basis, and the severe loss of pigs from swine flu, beef from drought, too much rain or lack of feed, and multiple crop failures not only here in the US but across the world has put an exclamation point on the urgency of both growing your own food and putting food away. We are taking advantage of the seasonal sales to add to our stores. I’m also reading about high tunnels and 4 season growing and it has me thinking about how to incorporate one on our property. There is always more reading to do and supplies to acquire!

  11. A quick heads up , was noitfied our order of seed potatoes could not be filled completely for coming year ,(40,000 lbs ,) but maybe 10,000lbs due to crop loss ,
    Looks like we are in for a ruff ride ,
    More later if time permits

    Tea and chocolate

  12. A couple years ago, our area experienced a cooler than usual summer with average temperatures — off just a couple of degrees. The cascading results were really quite dramatic: the trees were late in producing flowers, and our honey bees absconded. All of them. We were already aware of the coming GSM, but before us was the extraordinary example of just one consequence resulting from a relatively minor change. Quite suddenly we lost a substantial population of pollinator helpers. This gave us pause, and we share the experience with others. Long before the earth ices over once more, we are at great risk for food and other shortages. A couple of degrees can have a tremendous adverse impact. The posts of other readers confirm that some shortages are already here. Others are very probably on the way, and may be just around the corner. Combine these concerns with some other form of upheaval (economic, political, sociological), and conditions could become very difficult, quickly, and with little or no warning. Continue to prepare. Encourage others to do the same.

  13. Dear Lily, Thank you so much for all that you share. It is a ministry to us readers. You asked for comments and feedback, so here are a few. I am likeminded with you on end times and preparedness, even though I have not moved to the Redoubt yet. I feel encouraged every time you write and share. I love your heart and “can do” spirit. I, too, love to play in the snow and enjoy hearing about your adventures outdoors. Most importantly, I love that you love Jesus and willingly share how He is leading you.
    I agree with all your comments about prepping to share. That is what I am doing. I plan to prepare a retreat for 25, not knowing who the Lord wants to be there. With most of my family south of Seattle and a couple in Los Angeles, it is not likely they would make it. I tell them all the time I love them forever.
    I feel the Lord has called me to do this. I try to be wise about opsec, and yet do not lose sleep worrying about supplies being stolen. That is too much for me; they are God’s supplies and He will do whatever He pleases with them. Frankly, I would just as soon go up to heaven in the flash of a nuke and skip the whole,”being tortured and persecuted by the Beast, time period.” But I must obey my Heavenly Father, just as you are.
    One way I have been prepping is by collecting -20 degree sleeping bags. As with all other preps, by the time people figure out they need one, it will be too late. Last year I picked out a beautiful vintage looking style, but they were discontinued after I had only purchased three. Obviously, with so many to buy, I have to wait for sales. These are not, “climb the highest mountain,” sleeping bags. They are the heavy canvas with flannel type. I have 11 so far and am working my way up to 25. What if the GSM causes extreme winter storm worse than thought? Staying extra warm while sleeping reduces the need of calorie usage to keep you warm. What if you don’t want thermal heat coming out of the chimney because of a nearby enemy? Also, one thing I learned is that sleeping bags have fire retardant on them. I plan on washing it out next summer when I can hang them out to dry. I also plan on making cotton liners for inside and outside, for ease of laundering after shtf.
    I didn’t mean to be so long winded.
    Keep up the good work, Lily. You encourage us all.

  14. This week I used our mower to bag up a heaping pickup truck load of wet chopped leaves and grass, ready to layer on top of another garden bed.

    I hosted another CERT monthly meeting, reviewing comparisons survival of Hurricane Maria, to our looming Cascadia Earthquake with our 26 team members.

    We studied propane safety and received several videos of devastation from small and large propane tanks blowing up.

    I quizzed everyone on readiness for power outage for cooking, warmth, power generation, sanitation. We also did an in-depth area review of bridges to fall down and alternate routes our very proactive county emergency management people have developed.

    Bottom line is, “No one is coming. It’s up to us.”

    With so many older, transplanted, non-locally-raised people here, they don’t understand how country, rural people grow up and have the equipment for subsisting when the world crashes.

    So I tell our oldsters that they don’t really have to have chainsaws but really should plan to store at least 5 gallons of stabilized fuel to provide barter with chainsaw owners, and so forth for networking with neighbors.

    If 28 lower income families each have 5 gallons of long term fuel stored, that does a lot to help restore community after a major earthquake.

    I went to Montana to buy another .22 from a big box store. I was told Washington State sued Montana to prevent anyone from WA exercising their 2A rights to buy modern sporting rifles (MSRs) so the staff would not show me MSRs.
    I did get my grandkids 10/22. Dang the WA AG and Gov.

    The WA anti 2A groups are working to build more success with another round of new restrictions.

  15. Hello Krissy,

    Thank you for your sweet words. I have mixed feelings about surviving through all that is coming upon the world. I too, don’t really care to deal with the Mark and the Persecution, but there appears to be promises that we will shine like lights and will do great exploits for the LORD greater than those of the Apostles. Meaning that if we are willing vessels, He will use us to preach the Word and to heal his people, etc. But HE must get all of the glory. If we get prideful,of what He is doing through us, He will no longer protect us. Yeshua using us will be only occur because of our continually repentant heart and surrender and obedience to HIM and NOT being Fearful (God Help Us, please) that He will use us. Also, I really want to hear the two witnesses preach the gospel in Jerusalem. (I’m sure it will be broadcasted through all of the media, maybe?? Maybe not in this climate of censorship???) How incredibly awesome that will be!!!!!! How much will our hearts burn within us in those days for the salvation of the Jewish people and all who have rejected Yeshua even up to that point?

    You know, I am thinking that the rapture may occur on the same day and time that the witnesses are resurrected from the dead. You know that the unsaved people will be rejoicing at their deaths. Can you imagine their surprise and horror at seeing their resurrected bodies go up in the clouds like Jesus’ did? And then, as we are being raptured, God sending down HIS angels to dispense His WRATH on unrepentant mankind, all of those who take the Mark who have rejected Him? Whenever the opportunity arises, I am warning people of what is coming both here in the blog and when I am out and about. He is at the door! WOE WOE WOE to the inhabitants of the earth!

    Krissy, may you be so blessed and encouraged in Jesus/Yeshua, and thank you for also being an encouragement to me!!! 😉


    1. Yes, the Lord gets all the glory!!! Forgive me if anything sounded prideful, as that was certainly not my intention. After 30 years of abuse, I feel broken. All I have and am is because the Lord has heard my groanings from the depth of my being and rescued me. His kindness knows no bounds. I am not pretentious. This is me. I struggle with PTSD, anxiety and depression. The Lord sees me and cares for my wounds. I am humbled to have mental health issues. This has provided a whole new realm of understanding and compassion for those who suffer the same. If it were up to me to choose my affliction, hmm…, brain tumor! One gets loads of compassion. Tell others you have mental health problems, and they instantly distance themselves. While that can be painful, I trust the Lord gave me these afflictions to glorify himself moving forward. I so want to be like Mary and say in my heart, “May it be as you said.” Yes, I agree with regularly confessing our sins and asking for forgiveness…
      About watching the two witnesses, you’ve just got me asking the Lord for box seats… in heaven looking down!!! Blessings on your week, Krissy

      1. Dear Krissy,

        No, no, don’t you worry. I didn’t think that at all. I worry about my thoughts of pride and being used of the Lord. It was a warning to all of us. I am writing to you, but so many others are also reading, that I am also writing to them too. 🙂

        Concerning anxiety and stuff, make sure you are not eating any artificial sugars (Aspartame, especially) and chemicals. Try not to eat any packaged foods at all since they are full of chemicals that trigger the flight or fight response/adrenalin which is the source of much anxiety. Eat lots of good fats, like avocado, fruits, and veggies. They all help. Mental/hormonal issues are often related and are often diet based.

        May you be super blessed and at peace in this coming week!


  16. I watched Oppenheimer Ranch daily for the last year+. About 2-3 weeks ago he posted a video where he went on an epic rant which showed his true marxist roots. He raged about how he hates America, celebrates wounded veterans, and has utter disgust for the viewers that dont think like him. Its was an appalling and vulgar display that seemed to genuinely show his shameful beliefs. The subscriber comments were overwhelmingly critical and disgusted of Diamond. He ended up deleting the video but the damage was done. I’ll never watch him again. A real shame because there is a ton of good info on the channel. I refuse to support someone that hates everything I stand for.

  17. A few thoughts to add to the conversation… The bioavailability of nutrients to your garden plants is based significantly on a combination pH and temperature. This includes the temperature of both the environmental surround and the medium via which the nutrients are delivered. Whether you’re growing in-ground or using a hydroponics system, understanding these factors will help improve the likelihood of success!

  18. An idea to share… We have shipped care packages for unprepared (or unconvinced) family members, including basic evacuation supplies specific to the need for rapid evacuation. Specifically, we are concerned for family in the PNW who are too physically distant from us for direct rescue should there be a catastrophe. The boxes are limited to critical supply items (they’re modest in size), and have included a personal letter detailing some of the risks about which we’re concerned, and sharing a starter list of items we hope will be added to emergency stash. Some are more receptive than others. With certainty, this has been a helpful conversation starter. …and like Krissy, we tell them often that we will love them forever.

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