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!
I’m again traveling out of state, to help an ailing elderly relative. While I’m gone, I’ve put Elk Creek Company on a shipping hiatus for the month of March, 2020. On that same trip, I’ll be buying some inventory, mainly at estate sales and gun shows. I won’t take any credit card payments during the month of March. But if you want any of my listed antique guns and don’t want it to get away, then you can phone in your reservation, and send payment via USPS Postal Money order. But just be advised that your order won’t be mailed to you until Monday, April 6th.
This past week I was quite busy mailing out antique guns and packing up for my trip. I also had to get some studded snow tires swapped out, bought 480 pounds of poultry layer pellets.
Avalanche Lily Reports:
This has been a very busy week. We are making last minute preparations for the collapse of the world as we know it. It breaks my heart to know the freedoms we will be losing very shortly. 🙁
Being computer-less this past week was a bit trying for me. I did go through computer withdrawal symptoms and started to get some twitches ;-). I sometimes took over Jim and Miss Eloise’s computers, alternately, from time to time, to get my news and translation fixes.
I’m an early riser. Miss Eloise is a late riser, so in the morning I’d sneak into her room and kidnap her computer for a couple of hours and return it to her when she awoke. She was very patient with me and her sister who also needed her computer to do her on-line math class and math work.
It’s just plain awful to have such big world events occurring and to not to get to listen to one’s favorite analysts when they are live. Thankfully, Jim wanted to listen to an Adapt 2030 video with me one morning. Another morning, I “beat” Jim to his computer and watched an Israeli news channel and translated the subtitles for a few minutes. Those few minutes of translating were an incredibly satisfying “fix” for my soul! 😉
Both Jim’s and Miss Eloise’s computers have the the SurvivalBlog logins on them, so I could login to our site and moderate comments. And I used Jim’s computer to write last week’s “Editors’ Preps of the Week”.
Of course, it was also good for me to get out of the computer watching rut. After a day or two, my brain focused on what needed to be done around here, and I was able to accomplish a lot. See below.
I now have a brand new computer and spent some hours reloading all of the apps and things I need to function with homeschooling, SurvivalBlog, translating, and the sites I follow to keep up with world events. And to stay in contact with Jim while he is caring for his mum.
As I said, prepping-wise it has been a very busy week. Early in the week, I dragged out my large tote bin of seed packets, sacks, and jars. I sorted through them, organized them into piles of species, on our living room floor. I made lists of the order of starting them for seedlings and when to plant them — both right now inside (see below), and who, what and when to plant them outside. It was a big job, but it allowed for me to see what I have, to sort through the organic heirloom seeds and the very few hybrids that I have. (I love the hybrid yellow zucchini and I have a few others…) But I set aside most of the the hybrids, if I already had organic heirlooms of the same species, because I want to grow and save my own seeds from each species that I am able to. I actually now have grown, harvested, and saved most of my own seeds of which I am now planting.
It is exciting to be seed self-sufficient.
Now I am following my list and checking off the seed species that I have planted. I am far more organized this year. I guess that now that I have been gardening for the past nine years, I now know what I need to do and what I want. I now have a method and plan instead of just kinda playing with it.
The times are very serious now.
Last week I mentioned that I had started filling seedling pots with soil. The girls and I finished filling the 1.5-inch and 4-inch pots with soil this week.
Jim and I, “evicted” Miss Violet from her bathroom for the next six to twelve weeks. (She can use the guest bathroom along with Miss Eloise for the time being.) We turned her bathroom into our indoor seedling green house. It actually is the best room in the house, being that it is an inner room of the house, we can close the door and the powerful light from those grow lamps will not bother anyone. The bathroom has an exhaust fan to pull out extra heat and humidity and it’s own heater, if we’d need it. We hung our two grow LED lights. I then transferred 17, 1-inch soil-filled trays to the green house bathroom and planted them. So far, I’ve planted three types of cabbage, two types of broccoli, leeks, onion seeds, garlic seeds from my last summer’s garlic plant flowers (an experiment), celery, and numerous types of tomatoes and peppers.
These veggies are the ones that either need the most indoor growing time and or will be planted outside as soon as the soil can be worked and the temps are up above freezing at night. As soon as the onions, cabbage and broccoli are planted outside in April under hoops, I will be starting my squashes, melons, cucumbers, and Luffa in the indoor bathroom greenhouse.
We ordered 50 chicken meat bird chicks. Once they reach butcher-size, I plan on canning their meat in a few months.
We also ordered two packages of honey bees. I want to try working with them again. Our first round died after the second winter from mites, mold, and the ravages of yellow jackets. I have plans to mitigate these hazards this time around.
We bought a large amount of local honey which is our main sweetener. We had been down to just one gallon.
I finally cleaned out the chicken coop, this week. Eyew, it was bad! It hadn’t been cleaned out in about two months because of our colds and bronchitis. I cleaned it a second time on Friday. Jim and I, were going to butcher some more chickens before he left on his out-of-state trip, but, I gave them the chest squeeze and found that they were still too bony… We’ll just have to wait another month.
There are three very large roosters, with some hens that I would like more of, therefore, I’m thinking of separating them and breeding them for eggs to incubate. So they will not be butchered for awhile. Of that “mixed run” we bought late last fall, most of the birds turned out to be Banties. I am not too happy about that.
I froze the last ripe batch of avocados in chunks.
We had eye and dental appointments this week.
On Friday, I started deep spring cleaning the house in earnest. I will be cleaning into next week. So far, I have vacuumed and bleached the tile floors, I usually only use soap and water on them, I scrubbed our wool floor rug. I am washing sheets, blankets, comforters. And cleaning bathrooms. It feels good to have the house beginning to feel, look and smell clean and fresh.
With Jim traveling twice this winter, I have taken up the job of loading up the wood box most mornings, and rekindling the fire in the wood stove, just to have it in my routine. I also recently have been chopping kindling. When Jim noticed I was doing his job which is traditionally his, he protested a bit. But I said: I enjoy doing it. I want to do it. It is a good habit to get into and it helps build up my strength and endurance. It’s also, another excuse to be outside in the fresh air longer. 😉 I have to do it anyway, when he is not here, so I might as well already have it/keep it as part of my routine. 🙂 I really like doing the job. It feels campy, and I like that feeling. Also, while kindling the fire I use my ferro rod and striker to get in the practice of using something other than matches or a lighter to light a fire.
We have a few more things to do out in the world in the next week and then we will be hunkering down for the duration.
We are very concerned about this Wuhan virus. News reached me on Friday that a friend of ours had just returned from the South Pacific and has a very bad flu. The friend said that they were surrounded by Asian people on all of the flights. We hope the friend doesn’t have IT. The friend isn’t too concerned, in general, though… but said that muscles hurt really bad.
Miss Eloise takes care of some children that go to this person’s congregation. When Miss Eloise came in the door after caring for those children, I “pounced” on her, told her to strip down, immediately, and get in the shower. I took her clothes and threw them in the washer, put her shoes outside and bleached the floor she had just walked on and the door handles she had touched. I claim Psalm 91 over her, and washed my hands and arms that had handled her clothes.
Maybe, we’ll skip the next appointments we have in the next few weeks…..a vet visit, another dentist visit, picking up chicks and bees and a farrier visit…..Lord give us wisdom.
Concerning the farrier visit: have been exercising my hands and fingers to strengthen them to do the farrier work myself.
I am also now wiping down all boxes that we are receiving from UPS and FedEx with Chlorox wipes and mail.
There is much to be done on the ranch in the coming weeks so, if we completely isolate, it’s not a real hardship to be here 24/7, especially if we still have phone and an Internet connection to communicate with the outside world.
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.