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:

This week was fairly quiet. I’ve been catching up on some blog writing, and doing some last-minute Pre-Biden “Commonsense Gun Safety Executive Orders” purchasing. I also had a half-day of on-site retreat design and improvements site selection consulting with a client who lives nearby. (An explanatory note: Here in the Inland Northwest, “nearby” generally means less than a three-hour drive. Some of my neighbors have been known to drive 1.5 hours each way, just to dine at their favorite steakhouse. And a “day trip” to a gun show can mean: three hours of driving, then three or four hours at the show, and then a three-hour drive home.)

Given the prevailing mood and the understandable angst in the country, orders from my Elk Creek Company customers have been brisk. I’ve noticed that I now have a lot of repeat customers. At least three of them now have a half-dozen antique guns that they’ve bought from me. So I suppose that says a lot about the quality of the guns that I select to sell, and how conservatively I describe them. I also try to include some fun bonus items with each order. Elk Creek Company customers tell me that they are tickled to see their gun arrive in a brand new padded case or in a period holster. And one other quite frequent bonus is the inclusion of one or two 1880s – 1890s publications. (See the accompanying illustration.) These help to provide some entertaining historical context for the guns that they’ve just purchased. Things have changed a lot in America, in the past 125 years. Thanks for your loyal patronage, folks!

And now, over to my lovely, hard-working wife, Lily…

Avalanche Lily Reports:

Dear Readers,

This week has been a dry weather week with temperatures in the mid- to high-thirties. We have very little snow on the ground.

We had a power outage from that windstorm for four days.  We were able to again practice what life would be like long term without grid power.  I have to say it was very peaceful to not have the near-constant hum of the refrigerator and upright freezers all the time.  We also all went to bed at a more decent hour, between 8:30 and 9:30pm. Our usual bedtime is an hour or two later than that.

I was able to refine our drinking water purifying routine.  We collected water from the river in enclosed containers, filtered it through my milk filter funnel using paper towels as the filter medium.  Then I boiled the water, cooled it down, and sent it through the Berkey.  This routine is to ensure purity of the water and to extend the longevity of the Berkey filter. We could just send the river water through the Berkey without the other steps but that would eventually clog the filters sooner than we would want.

We also streamlined/practiced our off-grid sponge bathing technique…  Come to think of it, we do have two camping showers put away in our RV and in a Go bag, that we could have used. I had forgotten about them.  I will pull one out and put it under the sink and give it a try the next time we have a power outage. It’s been done!

We cooked a lot using our propane stove top and cast iron pans.  Unfortunately, our propane oven only starts with the electric starter. However, I also heated up food in our wood stove-top oven.  This oven tends to only get up to about 200 degrees, so is best used as a warmer.  I did keep soup heated on the woodstove top.

The items in the kitchen refrigerator were removed and placed in coolers and put on the back porch.  Our temperatures were in the thirties and high twenties all week. The items from the kitchen freezer were moved to the other freezers in the house that were periodically on our generator. (When we run it in the winter, there is no need to run it 24 hours a day. Nor is there a need to run the genset at high RPM, if we only run one chest freezer at a time.

For lighting we used a combination of candles, flashlights, a kerosene lantern, and battery lanterns. We all seemed to like the atmosphere in the evenings.  We could have used an electric floorlamp for the 8 hours per day that we were running the generator, but that sort of ruins the whole “power outage” ambiance. Our family spent more time all together in the livingroom, around the woodstove, where it was warmer than every other room in the house. We all enjoyed very much the family togetherness.  One night Miss Eloise read us a chapter out of Patrick McManus’s book, “The Night the Bear Ate Goombah”. The chapter she read to us was titled “Getting it in the Ear” that discussed the best method of extracting a fishhook from human anatomy. We all just about broke a gut from laughing so hard. 😉

This week in the Indoor bathroom greenhouse, I planted seeds of spinach, kale, beets, lettuce,  broccoli, and cabbage. Then I went outside and cleaned up the beds in the greenhouse and turned them over to get ready for planting the greens that I started in the Indoor greenhouse, in a few weeks.  I also began reorganizing and cleaning up the gravel floor from last year’s dead vegetation.

I’ve been walking outside several times this week for forty minutes to an hour.

At the end of the week, on Friday, we had the perfect weather for ice skating in our meadow.  The sky was a rare crystal blue with awesome sunshine.  The meadow has many very large dips that collect water and some brooks that make excellent skating rinks when conditions are right.  This year we have some of the largest stretches of ice we’ve ever had before. I got the girls going and we all went out and skated for almost two hours.  Jim came out a little bit later to watch us enjoy ourselves and to get a bit of sun himself, and to take photos. If my memory serves me correctly, I don’t think we ever had the right conditions to skate last winter, so if this is correct, it’s been two years since I skated last.  I just want to give a shout out to muscle memory. After five minutes on the ice, I was doing all of the stuff, I used to do as a kid.  It felt wonderful!  I love ice skating.

I will say that I did have a fall at the end of the two hours.  I stepped off the ice onto some grass that had some ice around it.  For some reason, my left skate went forward and I flipped straight down onto my back left hip and upper gluts, hard. I think that I fell on the tuft of grass or ice-mud since I felt it so strongly on my left side . As I was going down I called out to “Jesus”.  It hurt!  As I lay there, I immediately claimed healing. I waited for a minute or so praying some more and most of the pain left. I moved around a little to see if anything was broken.  The ligaments in the front of the pelvis hurt some.  My back left pelvis hurt.  And even though I hardly landed on my upper back, I held up my head, my left lower rib muscles hurt probably from being so tense, protecting my head as I landed so hard on my gluts.  Miss Eloise yelled, “Are you all right mom?”  I yelled back, “I don’t know, but I’m getting up.”  I did get up and walked carefully over the grassy tufts to another ice patch and skated over to the girls.  We took off our skates, then headed back up to the house.  So okay, as I write this, I think I’m okay.  I don’t feel much though expect to have some good muscle aches in my back, hip, and chest come morning.  Hopefully not! I’ll let you know.

I did watch the Inauguration of the new administration to listen for key words which indicate Biden’s path and his alliances.  I also spent time looking through his Executive orders. (By the way, a reader mentioned that a shorter URL to get auto-redirected to www.Whitehouse.gov is to type: “www.antifa.com“.  Try it. We found that very funny.)

It is important to follow what Biden does each day so one can be aware of how to pray and to be ready for what is coming.  He is definitely furthering the UN’s “worse than communism” One World Order and will not be a friend to Christians and Conservatives. His call for unity of our country, isn’t our call for unity.  His call is for us to compromise our faith and our morals and worse.  Nope, that ain’t happening, Mr. Biden. We will not bow down to your depravity. Your “good” is God’s evil, what the God of the Bible claims is sin. We will not partner with it. We fear God more than man.

It’s time to seriously Pray and to know God’s Word.  Keep reading and listening to it and praying.  We need to know who He is and learn to hear his voice.  For He will guide us and show us how we should walk and what we should be doing.  He will encourage and strengthen us to persevere through what is coming upon the earth and will keep us from evil.

This week I returned to listening and following along reading the “minor” prophets of the Bible: Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi, and Lamentations.  I had accidentally skipped Lamentations a few weeks ago.

I’m very much looking forward to listening and reading the New Testament again, beginning on Saturday.

Remember, we do not worship a dead God or Idol!  We worship the Father God and His Son Jesus who is the Living Savior!  He died for our sins and rose again from the grave.  He is ALIVE and sits at the right hand of God the father and He will be our advocate before the Father God on the Day of Judgment.  Hallelujah Jesus is ALIVE!

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. AL,
    You wrote that you found the redirect of http://www.antifa.com to http://www.Whitehouse.gov “very funny.” I saw a reference to it within an hour or so of the inauguration along with the comment, “Well, that didn’t take long,” and found it quite disturbing. My DH just nodded, said he had heard of it several times throughout 2020 happening when people typed in http://www.blm.com and similar addresses. So, I suppose it might be done by hackers as a joke but my initial reaction was more along the lines of “uh, oh…this is bad…this is messed up!”

    Otherwise, our week has been quiet. Monday, we taught a private lesson to an older student who has been tasked with leading his church’s security team since he has LE/Corrections experience. Tuesday, we took a trip to our county courthouse for early voting in a Special Election. Thursday, I finally got back to putting the “corn garden” to bed for the winter. I still have to move a bunch of hay into it to cover up the cardboard I added but I ran out of daylight that evening and had to quit f the night. I will get back to it today, Saturday. Friday, I made my usual weekly trip to town for groceries, a few days later than usual. Both Tractor Supply and Walmart have started receiving their gardening supplies so I picked up a few bags of soil, some grass seed, some plant food for veggies and a bunch of seeds to supplement all the seeds left over from the past two years. I will update my inventory database over the next few days. I also found a source online for a particular variety of seed potato that is supposed to do well in drought and heat conditions, and while I was at it, I added a bunch of seeds to that order. I am waiting for an order of Grow Boxes to arrive, also. I removed a few heads of lettuce that had bolted in my indoor planter boxes and replaced them with new seeds which have started to sprout. I also found two large plastic containers at Walmart Friday that look like half-whiskey barrels, for $15 each. They are about 2′ in diameter at the top so I am going to plant some veggies in them and put them on the deck of the guest house. We will see if that will keep the deer out of them.
    I ordered 10 yards of nylon netting which arrived the other day. The next day, I cut off a strip, sewed it into a long tube, then sewed across one end, dropped in half a bar of Irish Spring soap, tied off the top end close to the soap while including a 6″ long piece of vinyl wrapped wire in the overhand knot. I cut it off, then repeated with some more half-bars of soap. When I was done, I went out to the upper orchard and tied them to more of the young almond, pecan and fruit trees as a deer repellant/deterrent. I also picked up another 12-pack of the soap at Walmart. Boy! That stuff stinks! So, it should keep the deer away for a few weeks, at least. Before I received the nylon netting, I used the nylon mesh bags that some produce came in over the summer and fall. I saved them because I didn’t know what they would get used for but I figured they were going to be perfect for something down the road. Nearly all the trees have been given either a full- or a half-bar of soap now. Just have to do the same for 10 more…
    I am just itching to get plants started for the spring but I know we have barely started winter so, for now, I will stock up on supplies and go through the seed catalogs and make my plans for the spring and summer. I hope we get some more snow and cold temps so we don’t have to fight the grasshoppers so hard again. They really need to either move on or DIE!
    And on that note, I will say, “Good night,” since it is about 3:30 in the morning and I need to get some sleep. I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend and stays safe and healthy.

    1. Not sure what your potato source is but I’ve bought from quite a few and Wood Prairie Farm in Maine is hands down the best I have ever bought. I had russets yield around 16-18 pounds per pound planted and the same with fingerlings.
      Just my $.02.

  2. http://www.antifa.com = http://www.whitehouse.gov – – – that’s hysterical! Wonder how long that will stay up? Did the white hats do that for fun? Anyway, I got a good laugh from it. Other than that, this has been a stressful week for our family because of the complete corruption of our so-called government. The events of 20 Jan made me physically ill so I spent most of the week in prayer, Bible study and pondering specific scriptures. This has brought me back to my ole self with more determination to resist evil and fight for truth! Part of fighting for truth is discerning and seeing thru deceit and evil. Our family took the red pill many years back so we decided to watch the original Matrix movie again; it’s amazing how similar today’s society is.

    For prepping, this week I received orders of wheat, indoor and outdoor storage containers, animal meds and a small generator that can be easily carried about the property or on the ATV or tractor. Finally got a new blender after my 20 year old, $5.00 blender died. I am still waiting for another 50# bag of winter wheat, forage and meadow seeds.

    We are moving forward to expand the livestock grazing and foraging area down in the east meadow. We have collected all the T-posts, hot wire, barbed wire and accessories. But, need to get a few more bags of quikcrete and more staples. My son harvested four 35′-40′ red cedars to use in building the additional animal protection/sheds. This will be an ongoing project due to weather conditions.

    If you are interested, the Trump declassified documents are being put on telegram (app), under the group ‘The True Great Awakening’. Some of the unsealed indictments, especially those for Google, Facebook and Deepmind are terrifying on what they have been and are still trying to do. An index was posted Friday #3252 at time stamp 12:34 pm. I jumped around in the first 4 batches and found them both shocking and satisfying. The indictments are very interesting and the word treason shows up a lot. All de-clas docs are being loaded over the next week, as I’m told there are billions of pages.

    I read an article about the worlds largest solar simulator (artificial sun) under testing in Germany. Maybe it is to counter Bill Gates; not only does he want to make humans sterile, control most food production, but I have read where he wants to block the amount of sun coming thru our atmosphere. (Source: a forbes article discussed the development of sun-dimming technology that would potentially reflect sunlight out of Earth’s atmosphere, triggering a global cooling effect).

    I saw an interesting video of a phone camera, which was turned off, recording everything that comes into view of the phone while it is being carried around. Talk about Orwell’s 1984; we are being watched, recorded and monitored. I’ve always had my laptop camera and mic physically covered but now I have to put the phone in a faraday bag.

    If the followers of lucifer don’t destroy our country first, I know we are on the verge of something wonderful. But we have to pass thru many tribulations first.

    May your week be safe and productive.

  3. My Fisher wood stove is 30 years old and going strong. My current home has the chimney for the stove in a corner. I had a friend of mine who has a sheet metal business fabricate two panels approximately 36″x48″ out of thin stainless steel. He bent the edges so there are no sharp edges. I hinged them together and stood them behind the stove about 4″ from the drywall. This keeps the wall cool and amazingly the metal does not get hot either.

    1. Good idea, Wayne. Stainless-Steel, sheet metal is expensive; but, it lasts a long long time. [Stainless-Steel, sheet metal is even expensive, if you buy it from a junkyard.]

      Sufficient cooler Airflow is the key to helping keep any metal or other surface cool. The design used by Wayne permits sufficient Airflow. … We all know about airflow, from just ‘waving’ a fan in the face, when it’s hot. [Though people ‘sweat’ unlike sheet metal.]
      [+That’s why some motorcyclists, will tell the cops, “I’m just going a 100mph to keep my motor cool.” A joke of sorts; the faster a motorcycle goes, there is more heat generated inside a gas motor. But more airflow = equals more heat transfer from the metal to the air.]

      Heat can destroy the sheetrock; = after a number of years, it will deteriorate. Sufficient airflow and protection from ‘direct radiant’ heat helps persevere the sheetrock.
      The stainless steel acts like a ‘shade tree’ on a hundred degree day. It’s ~hot in the shade, but NOT as bad as standing in the ‘direct radiant’ heat from sun.

      A back metal plate for a fireplace helps protect the longevity of the firebrick, +The metal reflects the heat. (A radiant heat) … With a wood stove, the sheet metal panel will help protect the wall, if installed properly. … A thermal fan on the stove will help circulate air for comfort, and help with the ‘heat’ dispersion from the wall.

      [The set-up design for a wood stove is crucial. Some stove people are sellers (salespeople), and some sellers have a ‘mechanics’ knowledge of the Universe, and a basic understanding about the ‘common sense’ laws about heat transfer.] … A good stove salesperson will help with a basic wood stove set-up. … Wood Stoves are sold with ‘Distance from Walls & Floor’ guidelines.

    1. re:
      somebody wrote something for china joe to sign
      (the same china joe of the ‘selling his driveway’ comedy skit)

      To which version of china joe is that NewWorldOrder comedy routine attributed?
      “But but but, ‘which version!?!'” I can hear you asking.
      During appearances on televisionprogramming:
      [ warning — bullet-points ]
      * His ears raise/lower, the space between his lip and nose shrinks/lengthens, his hairline shifts.
      * The divot in his forehead magically fills… and scoops, then fills, then scoops.
      * And the kicker — ol’ china joe is occasionally not utterly completely unhinged.

      All this is enough to make this humble observer wonder:
      * If that on-screen business is clearly that bizarre, what are the haps off-screen, those hidden places our dedicated journalists on televisionprogramming and in newspaperprogramming dare not probe?

      But I admit I could be way off-base here.
      But if I was a skeptical person, I might think these are a series of impersonators.
      But I am not questioning any of these latest versions of TheOneTrueNarrative, I am merely mentioning my observations.

      But, I suppose I might carry some doubt about one or two of these latest versions of TheOneTrueNarrative… because I am not convinced ol’ china joe (and Doctor Jill [good grief!], and First Son hunter biden [extra helping of ‘good grief’!]) exist in the first place.

      (Heck, decades ago, after CIA reports from SecretAgents in china about he was deathly ill on his death-bed and soon to perish any second now and wasn’t seen in public for months because he was already embalmed and buried, LIFE magazine exposed faked photographs of a healthy but obviously Prozac’d Chairman Moe flouncing around in the Yangtze.)

      But I have to ask… could the indications be any more obvious?
      [ warning — more bullet-points ]
      * Fake ‘money’.
      * Fake voters.
      * Fake elections.
      * Fake candidates and other big-shots.
      * Fake computer-controlled elections.
      * Fake computer-generated election results.
      * Fake reasons for invading other countries so we can ‘further democracy!’ and ‘raise their LivingStandards to FirstWorld levels!’.
      * Computer-manipulated and computer-generated fake scenes in movieprogramming and televisionprogramming.
      * Movieprogramming such as WAG THE DOG about faking situations so fake voters can fake-vote in fake elections for fake candidates.


      I am fine.
      No, really.
      I just need to catch my breath.
      I think I might sit in the porch rocker for a spell.
      Each time I rock a while, that seems to re-establish my [editor note — ‘alleged’] sanity.
      While rocking, I think I ought to toss some tennis-balls to the dogs.
      Because, honestly, the last time I asked them, the dogs were pretty sure I exist.
      But I hope the dogs aren’t part of some vast canine conspiracy… but I wouldn’t put it past the rascals to mess with me.
      Just for the fun of it.

      1. There’s a current video on YouTube titled, = ~Biden Says “I don’t know what I’m signing” Kamala says “sign it anyways”~ … dated, Jan 23, 2021.
        [I doubt if the video will last. … Plus, the volume needs to be turned up, to help understand ‘senile Joe’ when he speaks.]

  4. SB Readers…
    There is much to be done, and time is short. It’s hard be on the receiving end of a gut-punch like the one so many of us experienced in the 2020 election, but it’s also critical that we do not lose even a moment in our efforts going forward. There is tremendous work to be done with regard to the restoration of election integrity.

    With regard to that matter, what in the world is going on in Maricopa County?


    Patriots of Arizona! Do not lose sight of what is going on, and be sure you contact every person in authority to press on the matter of an honest forensic audit of the ballots.

    Arizona is not alone. Every state that was contested in 2020 is vulnerable going forward in 2022 and 2024. Georgia, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Nevada. We should add New Mexico and Virginia to this list. News reports intent of the Democrats to pursue North Carolina, and there are no doubt other vulnerable states as well (whether or not anyone realizes it).

    Now is the time to be in very active contact with everyone from your local boards of elections to your state legislators, and to get involved. Find out how to become a poll watcher, participate in the development of policies and practices to protect election integrity, ask questions about the systems (hardware and software) used in your state to tabulate votes — and help to make changes as needed.

    Steve Bannon makes a great suggestion — that we focus on the signal and not the noise. Do not be distracted by noise. Focus on the important objectives at hand — and those should all be dedicated to restoring election integrity, and holding accountable those who participated in voter or election fraud in 2020.

    1. Much outrage. Perhaps there are some folks demonstrating their anger. They certainly are in Russia, even in the face of the police state:

      Protesters took to the streets Saturday in nearly 70 cities and towns across Russia calling for the release of jailed opposition leader Alexei Navalny — a massive show of defiance against President Vladimir Putin and his widening crackdowns against challenges to his power. More than 1,900 people were detained, including Navalny’s wife, Yulia.

      The rallies — from Russia’s Far East to central Moscow — came less than a week after Navalny returned from Germany, where he recovered from a nerve agent poisoning in August during a trip to Siberia. Navalny was arrested shortly after stepping off the plane. Some 40,000 people participated in the Moscow protest, Reuters reported, while police said 4,000 people took part. Tens of thousands of others joined protests across the country — sending a powerful message to the Kremlin on the reach and resolve of Navalny’s network. It also underscored the pressure facing Russian authorities who must decide whether to keep Navalny behind bars.”

      Many folks call the USA a police state. That is common from left and right people in my life. In the meantime, Russians can tell us what a real police state looks like.

      Carry on

      1. You are right, we are no where near Russia as far as being a police state. I’m concerned that if some of the democrat proposals get passed we could be heading closer to them.

  5. I finally bought myself a Berkey. I had previously purchased one for each family (my adult children), but then didn’t purchase one for myself. We have great water here, but you never know when you might have to get water from a lake or stream. Thank you Lily for your description of how you pre-filtered water.

    I wanted to thank today’s author, but don’t see a comments link. Thank you for the description of wood fire maintenance. Since I switched to a wood burning stove from propane, I’m very happy that I can get the house as warm as I want without worrying about the cost. I’ve calculated that I’m saving $50/month, but I expected more. I do try to “bank” a fire before bed and sometimes I have coals in the morning and sometimes not.

    I’ve been so angry over the political change towards Communism, that I’ve had to pray about managing my anger and make sure it’s directed properly. Our troops have rolled into Syria, so I guess we’re back to endless wars. The Keystone pipeline being cancelled not only put a lot of people out of work plus our quest for energy independence dashed. Rejoining the Paris Climate Accord means ridiculously high energy costs with not enough energy, not to mention population control methods. The Administration is making it clear that they will pursue and arrest Trump supporters, even labeling us “domestic terrorists”. Seriously???? I could go on but we all know these things. I’ve even thought about cancelling my Internet service just to keep myself from seeing, hearing, reading about our present demise – but we do need to know what’s coming our way.

    My German Shepherd “puppies” should be called “dogs” now since they are huge at almost 6 & 7 months old!! For the most part, well trained, sweet, responsive. Some days I just don’t want to be a Dog Mom! So far there are no holes in the furniture, but some of the carpet was being ripped up in a certain spot and some gnawing on wood furniture legs. Soon, I’m hoping to have the carpet replaced with a “life proof” flooring. That will save me endless hours of work.

    I’m working my way through the book Resistance to Tyranny by Joseph P. Martino. Worth reading because the “why” (to armed resistance against the government) is answered in the first part of the book.

    Godspeed all.

    1. The Administration is making it clear that they will pursue and arrest Trump supporters, even labeling us “domestic terrorists”.

      Hey SaraSue, you hit that nail on the head. One of the best tools for propaganda is to change the meaning of words to manipulate people easier. Almost nobody uses the word “terrorist/terrorism” using the proper definition but since 9/11, it’s a very effective way to reprogram people.

      Protesters, insurrectionists, traitors, treasonists, rioters, and even BLM/Antifa demonstrators don’t fit the definition of terrorists. But the people controlling the media in this country lump them all together as terrorists.

        1. I agree with you both, StF and BWL (almost entered BLM ;0, whoops).

          Those who want to control us use the words they want.

          My pet peeve since March has been calling the quarantine a “lockdown”. Before March that word was used mostly in regards to prison security. And then, sheeple mindlessly repeat it. SIgh.

          Carry on

      1. SF, the way I’ve generally seen terrorism defined is the use of violence or threat of violence against non-governmental entities in order to bring about societal, cultural, or political change. Under that definition, organizations like the KKK (in its heyday, they have pretty much no influence these days), BLM, and Antifa would all be classified as terrorists.

        How would you define terrorism? Please note, I’m not trying to start a fight, I’m genuinely curious. As BWL said, he who who controls the vocabulary controls the people. Or to quote the great Maha Rushdi, “words mean things”. Therefore, I think that those of us standing for freedom need to have a common understanding of the language we use.

  6. I would recommend getting a propane cook stove that you are able to use the oven with even without electricity. They sell them at Lowe’s. Might have to special order it. But if you need to live off your storage and stretch food, being able to bake would be very important. Praying you won’t have any long lasting effects from your fall .

    1. Two years ago the electricity went out around 0730 on Thanksgiving Day! I hauled out the propane stove/oven to cook breakfast, went on to make most of the Thanksgiving feast before the electricity came back on at 2:30! SOOOOOOO glad to have that!

    2. Here’s a very good off-grid propane stove, made in America. Lowes use to keep these in stock but I think now they are special order.


      It took me a year to locate the prefect stove when I was building my house and this is it. Runs off 8 AA batteries and has sealed burners. For some reason the sealed burners are missing from most off-grid stoves. Pilot lights were outlawed in the US so most stoves plug into the wall and use a glow bar in the oven, which eats up the electricity all during the three hours you have that turkey cooking. This stove also lacks a pilot light but takes the flame down to barely on as the oven cycles on and off during cooking. The 8 batteries ignite the stove-top burners and I got 5 years out of the first set I installed.

      This company also has many other options so check out their website. I’ve had no problems with mine whatsoever.


  7. Lily, sorry to hear about your fall. You might want to get some x-rays at the hospital if the pain continues.

    As far as using wet wood, I am still searching for answers as to getting it dry in a reasonable amount of time. Putting it up against the fire area doesn’t work well for me.

      1. Avalanche Lily!
        This is GREAT news of healing. I read about your fall, and was very concerned… So hoping you are fully recovered, and quickly. Everyone among us who has ever suffered a fall knows the perils — potential, near misses, and those realized — of such an event. Prayers for you! Stay safe!

        1. I’m with Telesilla. Walking these days on icy roads, I wear NEOS Stabilicer boots. A gift from my sweet spouse who know how fearful of falling I am after going down on a patch of ice near our homestead. She hustled home while I lay there on the cold, cold ground in pain and worry. Did I mention the wind? She then drove the car off the road to where I lay and took me to the ER. She’s a keeper.

          Well, I made that all about me didn’t I? Where I was going was gratitude that you are up and well, Lily. Keep gently moving those injured tissues and they will heal faster.

          Massage them, too.

          Carry on in grace

          1. Yeah,

            I’m starting to feel more sore on the right side of my back opposite side of where I landed. Jim will have his work cut out for him this evening! ;-0

          2. The soreness on your right is likely muscle strain. They tried to hold you stable as you hit. You’re going to be back up playing ice hockey in no time.

            Carry on

          3. I’m carrying on. 😉 We’re going to visit grandsons tomorrow and I wish to leave a clean house. I’ve been running around doing laundry, dishes, one of the bathrooms, and vacuuming, since sunset. I don’t take pain meds at all. So… I guess I’m on the mend, maybe… I suppose they will hurt worse tomorrow or the next day… I’m a person’s whose muscles hurt the worse on the fourth and fifth day after doing something strenuous. This often causes me to have to stop and remember what I did three or four days ago. 🙂 LOL, I hope to skate again on Monday. The next week to two weeks looks like we are going to have proper cold weather for ice skating and possibly ice fishing, which I want to do more of. Fingers are crossed for continued conducive weather.

          4. Once a Marine, What a startling story you told about your fall. I’m so thankful you could contact your wife! She must have been worried sick on the drive to find you. How did you endure the car ride to the ER? Did you fracture anything? How is your back, or I should say, what got hurt the most, and how has your recovery been?
            Continuing prayer for a complete recovery, and of course, that this would be a one time event, Krissy

          5. Krissy, you are one of the dear-hearts I tell my friends about when I describe SB to them. I so appreciate your concern.

            When I went down, I was walking with Sweet Spouse. I thought I had really wrecked my already ailing knee and was afraid to attempt the walk home. Ironically, me who is usually the “calm one” in the face of calamity, was moaning and groaning big time. More anxiety than reality.

            Tests found only a minor injury that was treated with a stabilizer sleeve for the leg and crutches for a week. With some physical therapy and gentle exercise, I recovered quickly.

            Carry on in grace, friend.

          6. Once A Marine, What a happy ending to something that could have been much worse. Thank you, Lord! Gotta love those physical therapists. Note to SBlog readers: recruit physical therapists into the fold, smile.

            Thanks for sharing, “the rest of the story.” Blessings to you and sweet spouse this coming week, Krissy

      2. Avalanche Lily, Wonderful news that you have been up and about after your fall. Thank you, Lord! Am very happy for you that you were able to make special memories ice skating with your girls. Blessings to you all, Krissy

    1. Red Baron,

      The only solution I’ve found for truly wet wood is to position it on top of your fire to dry out before it is needed next on the fire. Don’t angle it at 90 degrees, more like 45-60 degrees. Took me some time to get a good drying position. The drying piece needs air flow under it to dry. You may have to turn it over if drenched. Unless you happen have a kiln to dry it. 😉

      Wet wood = extra time and attention to the fire.

  8. Re: heating with wood.
    -Paper and Kindling. Surface area and dryness is key. Usually more is better.Try your local lumber supplier for the scrap or dunnage that they have to throw out.
    -main wood. Dry is key.
    -amount to store. We were told 8-10 face cords a year when we started. That worked out for us. We tried getting 3 years worth once but by the third year alot of the wood was starting to go soft. We have to store it outside covered with tarps. If you had a woodshed that was perfectly dry it would last longer. We usually get ours in the spring so it has the summer to get really dry. We are able to supplement with wood we scrounge. If you hear a chainsaw-check it out and ask if you can have the wood. We are seeing hundreds of ash trees being cut down every year because of the ash borer. It splits easily and burns well.
    -insurance…we have to pay extra insurance to heat with wood. They inspected the insallation . They made sure everything was to code. The wood burner had to have a UL tag on it. It had to be installed by a WHET certified installer. We are not allowed to keep more than 1 days worth of wood inside.
    -controlling the fire…If your pipes glow red, if you “smell heat”, if your fire is roaring-you are probably over firing (too much wood, and too much draft).
    -It can be the cheapest form of heat (or the most expensive). Check prices of other fuel.
    -nice heat
    -can be allot of work-esp when you get older. As you age you can try to get smaller pieces, get it delivered as close to where you stack it as possible. You may have to stop cutting, splitting and hauling due to age/health reasons. Ask your supplier if they will stack for an extra charge if it gets really bad for you. A wheel barrow or wagon really helps.
    -be nice to your wood supplier as “the word” will get around if you are a difficult customer.

    1. “be nice to your wood supplier as the word will get around if you are a difficult customer”. LOL. The wood suppliers around these parts only do it part time, on their schedule, at their convenience, so you better be really nice and accommodating or they will blow you off forever. They like to dump and run. I still think for anyone looking to start a small business, investing in a good splitter would be a real money maker.

      Around here it’s very difficult to get wood delivered. And if you’re older, like I am, you can’t split it (I can stack it… slowly… lol). Some will only deliver large rounds and dump it on your property. This is something I didn’t expect, living in this part of Idaho. So, that is something to think about. I was able to hire a neighbor boy to split and stack for me, but I was not able to get enough wood delivered last spring. I ended up supplementing with “Idaho energy logs” – compressed sawdust basically, 8 lbs each, long burn time. I ordered two pallets from the local lumber yard and they delivered it right into my garage. A pallet of energy logs, equivalent of 1.5 cords, costs about $289 (on sale). A cord of red fir runs anywhere from $225 to $325 here. Heating with wood is “cheap” if you can do everything yourself. I have found that using a combination of the energy logs and red fir makes a great, hot, fire that lasts. So, say I “invest” 289×2+325=$903 to heat the home from October/November through April/May (8 months), plus the cost for someone to split and stack it, am I saving money? Not really. The cost is a little less than when I was using electricity + propane. If I save $75/month using wood vs propane for 8 months, that’s a $600 savings, but I spent over $900. Hmmm… so, cost savings is not realized. What is realized is a warmer home and the ability to heat and cook when the power is out. I’ll go strictly with energy logs next year due to the difficulty in getting split wood delivered. They are less expensive than the red fir for the output. I’ve heard that the local wood suppliers are taking advantage of the newbies to Idaho and that the prices are “outrageous”, but can’t find anyone else. I may try again in the spring. There are lower prices out there, but it’s a “come and get it” with your truck. And I can’t physically do that. I’m not sorry I switched to a wood burning stove, just disappointed that I couldn’t get enough good wood delivered at a reasonable price to realize any cost savings.

  9. Well AL, it’s more difficult to fall [than?] when we were children, isn’t it? Glad you are OK! I’ve put up solar powered lights that shine down around walk areas to ensure I don’t fall.

    I am, unfortunately, home for a couple weeks to give my body time to produce enough stem cells to collect for the stem cell transplant. I must be the longest running patient between this and testing positive (no symptoms) for Covid for 2 months. Made this week with the new administration’s attempts to further destroy our country a long one of relying on my faith! We are fine, but my heart breaks for so many who have lost their security and are struggling. If I can mention it, I started an Instagram last spring of food helps and recipes for my daughter that anyone is welcome to tag along on. Nothing fancy, just hoping to help keep food on the table. I don’t make anything on it. Savingfoodforeating is the name.

    Ordered a generator this week from a local store. I’m no longer ordering from Amazon. It’s a a shame the abuse of power these large companies are exercising. Can we say monopoly?

    Other than that, I’ve been organizing the latest orders, making cloth gift bags and resting. The neighbor, dogs and I walk everyday for exercise, company and to clear the mind.

    Keep the faith and your powder dry. Remember that we are in this together and don’t get discouraged. Have courage for we know where our help comes from.

    1. Thank you for the health update! I have been praying for you regarding the stem cell transplant. I’m glad you are able to rest at home. I will continue to pray.

  10. I wanna stick my head in the sand and pretend none of this is happening. Maybe I need yoga pants, Uggs, a bedazzled iPhone 27 (or whatever they’re up to) to watch my selfies get likes on Farcebook, and a latte in my hand as I wander the aisles of Target self-medicating with ‘retail therapy’ of plastic crap made in China, before I toss little Johnny and little Susie in the minivan, gotta keep em busy with cheer practice or something so I don’t have to actually parent or anything ’cause there isn’t enough wine to make it til their return to the indoctrination center on Monday.

    Or so they say.

    Instead I am giving my ‘List of Lists’ a thorough overhaul, continuing to reorganize the kitchen to accommodate the new freezer, and feeding and teaching my children well.

    Can’t even give brain space to ‘current events’ right now without totally losing my $#!+. It’s hard enough how INDIGNANT the children are, and I can’t figure out why because their father and I have tried hard to be very measured about things and focus on the Constitution and the Bible with them more than any specific wrong doings. My preps will be the same right now no matter the specific details of the misdeeds in the District of Criminals.

    Oh, and I found an actually competent realtor and we made an offer on a retreat property.

    Got a new song parody rattling around forming in my brain, so I hope to come back later.

    Peace be with everyone here!

  11. Hey Lily, here’s another interesting Whitehouse.gov link. Biden had Trump’s 1776 report taken down within 24 hours. Now you get a “404 error not found” ,message.


    Well, I’ve made it eight days without any foaming-at-the-mouth soapbox tirades so the medication must be working. Doc O’Brien says in another week or so they’re going to loosen the restraints, which will be great. It harder than you’d think to work a keyboard with your tongue and the tip of you nose. I never would have guessed lingual cramps were possible. Who’da thunk? I’m supposed to listen to Willie Nelson’s “There’s Nothing I Can Do About It Now” after each morning dose of medication and Simon and Garfunkle’s “Times They Are a Changin’ ” after the nightly dose. Something about reprogramming my brain. I’m under strict orders to avoid songs like Queen’s “We Will Rock You”, “We Are the Champions,” and “I Want to Break Free.” No Toby Keith, “A Little Less Talk and a Lot More Action.” The list was quite lengthy but all these songs are just fantasies and Doc O’Brien said I gotta get more realistic.

    I didn’t even make it two weeks with my 2021 motto, “Give people hope, even if it’s false hope,” so I’ve been contemplating how to get back on the wagon with that. First, it’s too lengthy and won’t fit on a t-shirt or a 3 x 5 card taped to my computer monitor so I borrowed Woodsplitter’s term and shortened it to “Dispense Hopium.” If I can keep the dyslectic DEA agents off my back, it should work.

    The propane blast last week was apparently a side effect of the psychotropic drugs they have me on and didn’t actually occur so disregard what I said about Lee Harvey Oswald. The friend taking care of my cat says the heater project turned out “totally awesome” and none of the four connectors leaked. The very small wall heater really pumps out the calefaction and raised the room temperature 10°F in ten minutes so I guess if they ever let me outta here I’m ready for the next big grid-down ice storm we’re overdue for. To get the copper tubing with an attached flared fitting through 9″ of wall including 6″ of insulation was a challenge. The drill bit wants to grab the insulation and make a huge mess before binding up. I accomplished the task by running a 16″ long ½” drill bit backwards, then using a piece of ½” sharpened rebar to finish punching through the other side. A 1¼” spade bit drill enlarged the hole in the chipboard on each side. The insulation was still preventing the tubing from going through so I made a giant wooden stake (1¼” x 30″) sharpened to a point and after hammering it through to the other side, a perfect 1¼” hole opened up allowing me to easily push the copper tubing through. The stake itself was a work of art and I sold it to a couple of vampire slayers who were passing through. The proceeds nearly paid for the entire propane project. Had they been heading for the D.C. blood suckers I would have given it to them for free and wished them godspeed.

    I got my seed order from Seed Savers Exchange and Baker Creek last week so I should be good to go for the year. Everything I bought is new stuff to try and so far, I’ve never had to re-buy any seed I’ve bought in the past and have been able to harvest my own each year. Ya gotta love those heirloom seeds.

    I made a bunch more blackberry vinegar this week. Since I discovered it’s a great addition to stir fry a quart doesn’t last long.

    I crossed over into full-blown stage 4 LOMR (late onset mental retardation) this week. The story is way too embarrassing to give you any details but if someone were to pull me aside at the SB reunion and offer me a dozen homemade peppermint patties (minimum weight 2 oz per unit) I could probably be coerced into divulging the specifics. Someone found out locally here and a reliable source tells me I’m in the lead for the idiot of the month award. By a long shot.

    I spent much of the week skipping Biden’s inauguration speech, ignoring the news and reading Patriot Porn. It’s fun to fantasize about the good guys winning for once instead of the politicians. Major thanks to Tom in Oregon for recommending The Terminal List and Old Retailer for Term Limits, both were excellent reads which I highly recommend. Navy Seals + Evil Politicians = Happy Ending. I can’t wait for someone to turn both books into movies. I finished up re-reading the interesting portions of the Anti-Federalist Papers and re-read War Is a Racket. I had everything under control up to that point but in the first paragraph of War Is A Racket I lost it and started screaming obscenities and throwing things so they tightened up my restraints, took away all reading privileges and added a week to my sentence, or rather my “treatment time.” If you don’t hear from me next week, count your blessings and it means they took away my internet priv…………

    Everyone have a great week!

      1. Mrs. Rawles, Thought I would mention in response to your bit about your propane stove needing electric, my wife and I bought a new stove for the house we built on our farm. It is a Unique brand stove, and uses a D cell battery for ignition, no electrical power used. If we ever move again, this stove is going with us. Best stove we have ever had. I find the flame adjustment and pattern to be similar to much more expensive units, such as commercial variants or Wolf stoves. Ours cost just under $900.00, which is thousands less than any comparable stove I have seen. It simmers well, the lack of which is a fault of many newer stoves. And there is little that compares with baking cinnamon rolls or fresh bread while burning the wood stove and kerosene lamps during a snowstorm and power outage. I sometimes wish the power wouldn’t come back on.

    1. St Funogas; Your posts always brighten up Saturday for us. But, stage 4 LOMR?! Oh, please, p-l-e-a-s-e tell the story. It will lighten up the whole week for us!

    2. Of its not on your restricted list, you could try “Hold On” by Kansas. As for hope I like Psalm 39:7. You shouldn’t tease a stage 4 LOMR story like that, it’s just not right. I certainly hope to hear from you in here over the next week, laughter is the best medicine.

    3. Hey, Saint, Wish you could have seen me reading your comments. Seems like every few sentences my eyes would close, and my head would tilt backwards into hilarious and delightful roaring laughter.

      The current events filled with hatred and evil have had me subdued with sadness this past week. Your gift of humor is good medicine for me. Praying you’ll be able to post next week! lol. Krissy

    4. StF, someone should have told you before this: “I had everything under control up to that point but in the first paragraph of War Is A Racket I lost it and started screaming obscenities.” That book is NOT about tennis. I can see, though, why you were so upset.

      Remember to spit out any meds they force on you. Except the ones for memory, of course.

      Carry on

    5. So, A Clockwork Funogas, if THAT Toby Keith song isn’t even allowed, then I am guessing ‘Courtesy of the Red White & Blue’ and ‘Beer for My Horses’ are definitely on the restricted list? Pity. There are a few cesspools, I MEAN cities, that could definitely use properly applied boots and hard lines drawn these days.

      I am really glad to hear that the propane explosion was just a bad trip and that you’re still with us. Just please be careful – now that BWL has blown the lid off the feline conspiracy, I hope your cat doesn’t have it in for you, what with your history of, err, ratting out such things also…

      Thank you for the names of the seed companies, which I had misplaced before, and for your humor. Glad you liked Term Limits, and that stir fry sounds delicious!

      P.S. I can’t find the peppermint patty recipe now, but I could offer some hand-dipped truffles made with strawberry liqueur and extra dark chocolate in trade for that story at the reunion. We’re all dying to hear it!

    6. Your posts always make me laugh! As for myself, I’m making a concerted effort to not walk around the house, shouting at imaginary liberals, because I’m so angry.

  12. This week has been somewhat busy. Our main focus has been selecting Ham radio equipment and studying for the test. My wife has mentioned the idea of sitting for the technician and general tests on the same day. Not so sure about that. I like to understand the theory and mechanics of these things so it will probably just be the one test for me. An acquaintance has been very helpful on choosing equipment options that meet our desired capabilities. My father in law gave us a 1970s radio set that we will also bring online. The antenna set is going to be challenging because we can’t install a 40’ pole at our current home. By the way, did you know that Btech offers 25W amplifiers for handheld radios? They have a UHF and VHF version for about $125 each on Amazon. Might be a great option for those of you looking to set up a comms system with a little more reach, and it can be included in a man portable setup.

    Also spent some time mapping out my road trip to TN and KY to see small rural towns we are interested in. We are collecting as much detail as possible so that we use our time efficiently. I think I mentioned before that some scouting will occur on my business trips, too.

    We’ve been studying Acts as a family. We do a chapter each night. Found a prepper verse: Acts 11:28-30. The prophecy of a worldwide famine in the times of Claudius was presented by Agabus about a year before the famine began. You have to jump outside the Bible to read writings on the famine by several historians of that era. The famine engulfed Israel, Egypt and the Roman Empire along with the price of grain and produce exploding. Root causes were a perfect storm of the Nile overflowing to levels not seen in over a century, rebellion and war interrupting trade routes and drought in Judea and the surrounding region. We found it interesting that the disciples decided in advance to send aid to the brothers in Judea when the time came. The famine lasted 7-8 years. It also brings to light that the events described in the book of Acts took place over a period of many years.

    Makes me want to order some more rice, beans and grains in bucket quantities.

    Persecution will probably be somewhat regional as things begin to unfold. I would think there will be areas considered free zones for at least a while, before enactment of policies invade conservative strongholds. I wonder if we should be preparing to send aid to those in need in another city as they did in Acts? If a modern day Agabus visited, would churches or home groups be willing to stock up small warehouse in advance with the goal of helping others? Who knew a simple Bible study could provide such an example?

    Until next week!

    1. Glad you’re getting your HAM licenses. We need to keep active to fight against the current push to make HAM communication either too expensive to use (fees to use the towers) or illegal. Glad to have you and your wife!

      If one wanted to disarm a nation, it would be easier in sections. Which would only work if communications were down. Has worked before. Look at history.

    2. Chris in Arkansas… “ There is nothing new under the sun “ … the Scriptures are filled with very practical, useful knowledge and wisdom as we well know … will be praying for your scouting trip in KY / TN

      1. RCB5474TN – thank you. It’s a lot of road time. Before we go anywhere, we will also be asking for God’s direction and intervention. Our best laid plans are nothing compared to His plans for us. It’s been fun researching towns, crime, politics, etc – then looking on Zillow to see what might be available.

    3. Chris in Arkansas; Yes, do order more rice, beans and grains but they are cheaper if you buy them in bags and then transfer them to your own buckets. Prices are up by about 10% already but grains are at least available now.

      For your property search, stay away from Louisville, KY and Knoxville, Nashville and Memphis TN. The mountain properties are very expensive now so you might want to look in central to west counties; cheaper and flatter. Make sure you know the property zoning.

      1. That was helpful. I have a family member looking in Tennessee. My dad was born in Memphis – it’s not a safe place to live any more.

        It would be great if people here could mention what parts of their states are good for homesteading and prepping. I’m particularly interested in any Texans with an opinion.

        1. SaraSue… I have lived in TN all my life ( 66 years young ) … feel free to get my email from JWR / AL and contact me… will be happy to provide details…look forward to hearing from you

          1. Sara Sue – we don’t have a specific region of TN in mind yet. We are starting at the Cumberland Plateau in the east (McMinnville and Spencer) and working our way west. We have no desire to live in Knoxville, Nashville or Memphis but there are stretches of I40 that go through rural areas between those cities, and we’re looking North of I40 since anything near that highway is probably a no-go for us and it’s a short trip into KY from there. If JWR and A. Lily are up to it my email is free to share with you and RCB5472TN.

          2. I’m 20 minutes from the TN state line in KY. We’d love to have more like-minded folks!

            AL, I’m so glad you’re not suffering long lasting injury!

            We’re making our garden lists and plans for getting our tiny homestead going. God was so good to give it to us just in time for these strange days.

          3. SaraSue,
            I am in TX. I would suggest the north east part of the State. We are located approx 90 miles from Dallas and 90 miles from Texarkana.
            If needed we are able to get to Dallas for the best medical care but still a very rural area. One of my neighbors recently passed away and his 5 acres and a 4/3 barndominium will be up for sale soon. Would be a great place and the price will be affordable. Our county is all red and very conservative.
            Feel free to email me.

        2. SaraSue – re: Texas…We are in the southeast corner of the Panhandle. This area depends upon cotton and cattle for its economy. There are more cows than people in our county. If the SHTF starts, I don’t expect to see many intruders on our little piece of Paradise because they will need to work pretty hard to find us.

          The weather here is fairly dry most years, quite windy all the time, pretty hot in the summer and winters are fairly mild with temps going down to the teens at night but they might climb up to the 50s the next day, or maybe only the 20s, you never can tell. We get some snow, we had an ice storm the last week of October this past fall, with a regional power outage for 4 or 5 days. We lose power on a regular basis when we get a thunder storm or an over-abundance of wind, so we keep oil lamps handy year-round. We have propane at the main house for cooking, heating and hot water. I recommend having a kitchen stove that uses propane and does not have the new-fangled safety cut-outs that prevent you from lighting burners with a match. We have several water wells but for potable water, we depend on “Rural Water.” One of the houses on the ranch only has a well so we fill bottles of water at the main house and take them over there for drinking.

          Politically, this area seems to be overwhelmingly Conservative/Republican, at least in our county and most of the people we deal with in the neighboring counties. There might be some Democrats/Liberals in the nearest city but I have only met one so far.

          An interesting tidbit about buying land in Texas is that the more acres you buy, the lower the cost per acre. I am not sure if that holds true throughout the rural areas of the country, but I noticed it when I moved to Texas back in the 70’s and we noticed it when we were looking for land here about 8 years ago. So…if you look for a parcel of 10 acres, the asking price might be around $250K. If you bump that up to 25 acres, the price might be $275K, if you increase it to 50 acres, you might be seeing an asking price of $325K and if you start looking at 100 acres or more, the price might be $350. Back in 2013, we got lucky and found a place that surveyed out to approximately 750 acres and paid less than $1000 per acre for it. If we had been able to find that much acreage in Colorado, the price would have probably been more than $1 Million. And then there are the property taxes. The taxes we pay on 7 acres in Colorado are about the same as the taxes we pay on nearly 1500 acres in Texas with Ag Exemptions. Plus, no State income taxes in Texas. Granted, we are pretty remote from most urban conveniences, but these days, that is exactly what we were looking for. We drive half an hour to get to the nearest gas station and our cell phones only work if we hook into the wifi near one of the houses on the ranch, but we have found that the walkie talkies reach most places on the property if we need to communicate with each other. All in all, it was a wise move on our part.

          And if you know of anyone who is looking for some property in Colorado, in the Front Range mountains, about half an hour from Denver, let me know. We still need to clean out the houses there and move all our “stuff” down to Texas but a year of quarantines and lockdowns has messed with our scheduling and plans, just like most other folks in the country.

          1. Thank you for that info! The property taxes in general are high compared to say, Idaho. But, I noticed on some properties the taxes were lower. Is that the Ag exemption? As a kid growing up, the family would take a long car trip through the southern states to see relatives (a drive from California to Florida with relatives in most of the southern states). When we drove through Texas it was endless miles of mostly flat dry land. I remember thinking Texas was bigger than the rest of the country. I’ve been back a few times on business to Dallas, Houston, and Austin – all quite different.

            How do you feel moving from mountainous Colorado to flat and dry Texas? Was it a huge adjustment?

          2. SaraSue – I have lived in several different states over the years, all with different terrain. I prefer mountains to beaches, and am definitely not a fan of hurricanes. I trust snowy roads more than flooded streets. But this part of Texas actually has lots of interesting terrain including flat fields, hilly areas, erosion “draws” that look like small canyons and lots of wildlife. So, we didn’t go through total withdrawal symptoms. And we both lived on the east coast for many years until moving to Colorado. It is pretty dry but I think Colorado is even dryer. And the weather changes on a dime, just like Colorado, so no boredom there.

            The biggest difference is the attitudes of the people here. When I lived near NYC, I noticed that the people there are rude and always in a hurry to stand in a waiting line but they are actually quite friendly and, if you “connect” with somebody, they are inviting you to stop by for dinner. In contrast, the people in Colorado are exceedingly polite but not very friendly. I knew people there for nearly 20 years and was never invited to their houses. I was only inside 4 of my neighbors’ houses in a neighborhood with about 15 houses. Everybody waves and smiles as they pass but nobody wants to get to know you.

            Here in Texas, with the nearest house being 3 miles away, for our first year here, as part-tomers, just about everyone in a 10 mile radius stopped in when they saw a car on the property, just to say, “Hi!” and introduce themselves. Granted, that was probably due in great measure to being nosey and wanting to see who voluntarily was moving here, but they put forth the effort. And they have come through for us when we have needed someone to look after the critters for a few days or needed help with equipment or an extra hand. Good, old fashioned, Southern hospitality and pulling together for your neighbors.

            So, yes, the weather and scenery are big changes but the locals’ attitudes are a more striking difference, for the better. Most of the folks around here are 2nd, 3rd and 4th generation on their land. We are newcomers but, once they saw that we weren’t bringing along urban/Liberal/Progressive ideas and demands, they have treated us as friends and neighbors. We feel right at home around here.

  13. No grid power? Need a shower” Use a plastic garden waterer, about 1 gallon, fill with warm water. Enough there for a quick shower. Be sure to us plastic waterer, a metal one, if dropped, could be hazardous.

    1. re:
      mobile shower

      We full-time live-aboard, and boondock exclusively.

      For warm weather:
      Early in our ExpeditionVehicle travels, we used a new (not used) two-gallon stainless-steel garden sprayer.
      Painted flat black, it warms nicely in the sun.
      Although we also carried a new (not used) roto-mold sprayer for a two-at-once-is-funner couple’s shower, the SS warmed quicker.

      For cooler weather:
      We acquired a three-gallon ‘mini’ version of the five-gallon retired Pepsi© kegs we use for fresh water.
      I fabricated a holder for its mouth so I can suspend a sous-vide cooker in it.
      Dialed to 104°, the circulation-heater warms the water to a comfy 104° in about ten minutes.
      A quick pressurizing with the air-pump, and it gives a nice five-minute shower!

  14. Amen AL! Pray and read God’s word and try to memorize scripture as well. The day may come when the persecution kicks in that we may not have ready access to a Bible. I have written many verses into a wire bound 3×5 cards and keep them with me wherever I go. I have verses for salvation as well as others that I might find useful. I am working to memorize all of them. Verses such as Joshua 1:9, Proverbs 3:5-6, Isaiah 26:3-4, Philippians 4:6-7, John 16:33. Be attentive as you read the bible and write down verses that strike you as being important.
    Grace to you from the God of all grace!

    1. Your comment reminded me of the very end of Fahrenheit 451, where he met up with the community of outsiders and some of them had whole books of the Bible committed to memory…

      1. I wish it were possible to memorize full books but I’m afraid my brain just isn’t capable of of that anymore. I do, however, a full re a through every 6-9 months so it is very familiar. I could probably tell most of the important stories in a paraphrased fashion. John 14:26 and Luke 12:12

        1. In my world, remembering the spirit of the story is more soul-nourishing than remembering word-for-word. And, you say you could probably tell the story, paraphrased. Oh, telling the story keeps it alive within us.

          Carry on

  15. Spent the last half of this week finding and building a safe storage location. I thought there was a dead space in the house, and I was right! I hacked through the basement ceiling after some measuring 4 times and cutting once. Used a small Japanese pull saw and cut at a 45 degree angle at the joint between the joists and sub-floor. The plywood of the sub floor has 2 two foot sections of veneer per sheet, with a putty line between the two. The putty line makes it look like it’s two distinct sheets. So I cut the line with a fine razor saw. Saw lines were covered with Vaseline to camouflage the cut. I also ran a black Sharpie down the seams on either side of the cut to mask the cut line. From the floor, the cut out panel doesn’t stand out at all.

    The next problem was the construction trash that seemed purposely dumped in the space. 2X4’s, hardwood floor scraps, plaster, cigarette packs, ect. The dust would clog the shop vac HEPA filter prematurely, causing me to run through filters quickly.

    What I found up there appalled me! If I had built those stringers for stage, I’d be fired on the spot! 1/2″ shimmed gaps between the treads and the stringer. Also found some illegal wiring. Luckily, the scrap wood I pulled out was long enough to do the rebuilding I needed. Will have to splice and reroute the wiring and add a switched outlet for a LED rope light. Also carpeted the floor with trade show carpet scraps I had left over from doing the laundry room. Will panel the walls with pegboard. Overall, I have a hidey hole I could pack 5 Jews (3 adults and 2 kids), or all of the most hated peace makers, dirty magazines, and seeds into to stop the gestapo from finding it.

    WHOHOO! Won at Powerball! Only $4 but I still won! Lord gets $1.

      1. Krissy, take a look at your house, there’s bound to be a few dead spaces near stairwells, ect, that can be exploited. I lucked out with a large space that was easy to camouflage. I know of 2 other spaces, one a bathroom, and a closet that would give access, but require punching through drywall which can’t be as easily concealed. Plaster is a pain, but paneling is easy!

        The only way to find them is, get out the measuring tape!

  16. Talk about a bored redneck with cabin fever. Can not go outside because of the snow storm. Wife gives me one of those do not try it looks. Things are indeed bleak!
    I know, heard if you put your cell phone in the microwave the various alphabet agencies can not track your cell phone. – Wrong. Well if you put it in a heavy cast iron fry pan and lid, wrong again. What about tin foil. No way I am giving up my hat to find out.
    Several more funny looks from the wife unit and I find out that if you float the cell phone in a stainless steel pot with lid in the sink and cover it with the SS mixing bowl, said phone will not ring. Ah, now we are getting someplace. Same cast iron fry pan and lid placed in microwave and it does not ring through when you call your self. Great now I have several ways that CIA/NSA can not track me through my cell phone. Now all I have to do is figure a way to scale down the sink or the microwave so I can carry it in my pocket.
    Just wondering if one of those portable Faraday cages will work to stop the signal and the phone from ringing, If anybody has tried it please get back and give this group your outcome.
    Dang that tin foil hat keeps slipping…

        1. Thumb tacks are more secure than wig tape for keeping the hat on. We are all pretty tough here, right? Keep that clotting stuff handy, just in case.

          Carry on

    1. LOL!!!

      Well CM Dutch, I think I see your problem. It’s the pot. If you float the phone in the sink WITHOUT the pot, then cover it with the mixing bowl, it should be untrackable. But first you have to make sure you remove the Otterbox or other waterproof covering. Those actually amplify the nefarious signals. 😀

  17. The redirect (http://www.antifa.com to http://www.Whitehouse.gov) I’m sure was a hack job, and very fitting and funny, as I saw that same White House pic w/ bejing on another posted article elsewhere the same day it came out.
    JWR: I pray that your #2 grandson is able to grow up celebrating birthdays in a free and open country the same as Mr browning did. I promise to do my part in keeping it that way. I’ll go to my grave keeping it so.

    When the governed become ungovernable – Let Them Herd Cats…….
    Long Live Our Republic

  18. Avalanche Lily: In your report you stated, “Nor is there a need to run the genset at high RPM, if we only run one chest freezer at a time.” During my 32 year career in construction equipment rental, portable single-cylinder generators were (and are) set to operate at 3600 RPM in order to provide the 60 Hz AC frequency necessary to operate electrical equipment in the USA (3600 being a derivative of 60). Larger, multi-cylinder gensets were/are set at 1800 RPM to produce the same 60 Hz frequency (again, 1800 being a derivative of 60). Improper RPM produces improper AC frequency, and may result in damage to electrical equipment and appliances.

    Unless your chest freezers operate on 12 volt DC (which is not frequency dependent) from optional/extra connections on your generator, and require 120 VAC, I’m confused about running your genset at less than high RPM.

    If I have missed something new in gensets, please forgive me. (Those jokes about old age and memory – turns out they aren’t jokes after all.)

  19. I’ve been keeping life low-key for the past couple weeks. The world seems to still be crazy. Staying away from people as much as possible. Testing out not grocery shopping for about a month. Fruits and veggies are the only items I need to stock more of in the deep freezer. Purchased a 20 gauge and stocked up on some shells. With more snow likely I will need to stock up on more firewood. Several years ago we had a power outage that lasted 10 days!

    Even though I bought this house in the fall I’m already looking to move again. The countryside is a calling me. The night of the 20th, heard what was either gunfire or fireworks. Asked a friend the next day and he said it was likely gunfire. That and our corrupt mayor make this city less desirable; even with the affordable cost of living.

    Only other preparations have been making of list of what I don’t have yet and reading the Bible.

  20. Solar Direct Pump System from Pond Garden Irrigation

    This is only video out there that uses the Dankoff Slow Pump like my own set up, but this is a better is several important ways, so I’ll share it over at survivalblog.com.

    Until I can afford to rig up a drip system and a fertilizer collection and delivery system, I can only gravity feed from 55 gallon drums. The advantage of using water tanks does have it’s advantage as it stores water for cloudy days, and can feed the cabin. We use very clean, yet cold creek water, and the drums in the sun do heat up the water as well. Warmer water would improve soil biology.
    Personally I would go with 10 micron intake filter. According to Dankoff technicians, there is less chance of cavitation and loss of lubricating water, behind the impeller, especially in a higher output pump like yours, and the filter needs to be changed less. Another method is to run two 5, or 10 micron filters in parallel, or side by side, thereby avoiding a filter change mid season.

    Mine is a 1308 that produces on average about 300 gallons per day, that should have been a 1303 that would produce twice that, or better yet a 2503. I can fortunately, that is if I can afford it, swap out the the 1308 head for a more productive 1303 set of impellers.

    Because of the high replacement cost of the LCB (liner current booster), and the now low cost of PV panels, I’ve added 200 watts to mine. If my LCB fails, these additional panels will replace the function of the LCB and maintain output. A method of water storage also reduces the need for an LCB.

    I can also add the additional panels to my system for the house during the winter, if needed. The additional panels can also be faced to the SE and SW to better capture the sun as it travels from east to west.

    1. OOPs, the mysterious poster call Anonymous is myself. I wonder what happened.
      As most know, I am a fan of Dankoff Slow Pumps. It can also be a good portable pump for a ‘guerrilla garden’, or other contingency….

  21. I read someplace that a number of hospitals are running out of covid vaccines and can’t find enough to take care of everyone that needs it. something about the transportation not working. Hmm, is this another one of the left’s way to screw things up with the people and blame that onto Trump too?

  22. This past week, I have been on a mission to acquire more canning jars at normal prices, and have had tremendous success. I feel like it is finding treasure that the Lord put there for me to find.
    Searching and finding produces an adrenaline rush for me, as well as this deep sense of awe at the Lord providing for His children, i.e., my children and grandchildren, for the coming famine, not too mention food control and inflation.

    It would be marvelous, if this spring and summer, the stores were overflowing with canning jars again as in years past. I just have my doubts and suspicions. I feel I should get them while I can. (lol). I am purchasing to give to my daughter-in-laws/loves.

    I had an order of two hundred pounds of green split peas arrive, 26 pounds of canned stew, some baby products, first aid supplies, laundry and hand soap. (I would really like to not have to make soap in the future, smile)

    I tried Stevia yesterday for the first time. Yikes. My taste buds do not like it at all. If anyone plans to visit me after shift, bring your own Stevia and coffee, because I won’t have any!

    My happy purchase that arrived this week was many extra large metal rolling racks. Woohoo! I need these obviously for storage organization but more importantly, so I can move them myself into and out of a moving truck, easy peasy.

    I had some dental work done right before New Years, so I could claim it as a tax deduction this year because next year I won’t be able too. Had the follow up appointment last Tuesday. As the assistant touched my tooth with her tool, I elevated out of the chair. She said she was sorry, and did I want any numbing? I said,
    “Is that a trick question? Hmm… Pain or no pain. I’ll go with the no pain option.”
    We both laughed, and then the needles came. Egads, did that needle hurt my nerve. None the less, I was extremely thankful to get the injections.

    From JWR’s recommendation, I have a copy of Murray Dickson’s,
    “Where There Is No Dentist.” Hope you all have a copy as well.

    In the Bible, it says we should go into our closet and pray to the Lord in private and not before men. I just want to reiterate that I pray for you all because I care for you.

    You think like me. You love freedom like me. And, most importantly, many of you love the Lord like me. I want the Lord to help you and encourage you wherever you are in life. I know I certainly need it. Since you encourage me here on the blog, I want to return the favor. Since I can’t share expertise on weapons or homesteading to enrich your lives, I pray for you. Blessings to you this week, Krissy

    1. Miss Krissy,

      We’re seeing more and more canning supplies in our area, but I doubt it will last. My Lady and I plan to hit some estate sales next weekend, and canning supplies are high on the list. I surprised her when I used up all the pint jars this past year.

      Stevia is a bit of an acquired taste, but I prefer it, since I try to maintain a low sugar diet for weight control (which probably won’t be an issue in TEOTWAWKI), and it’s less processed than aspartame (which gives me a splitting headache, anyway), sucralose, or saccharine.

      In the end, your prayers will mean more than any of our alleged expertise in weapons or homesteading. So thank you, ma’am.

  23. Anyone who has spent any time with young children, particularly groups of them, will remember their tendencies to latch onto a word or phrase and repeat it over…and over… and over… and OOOOOVER AGAIN until your last brain cell screams for mercy. That’s been my week! 😛

    Y’all can blame Batteau the comment for two days ago, starting me on the Don Henley kick.

    I’m pickin’ up pencils and puttin’ ’em in the bin
    And all they want to do is chant, chant
    Lego been scattered since I don’t know when
    And all they want to do is chant
    Whining and more whine – the local drink
    And all they want to do is chant, chant
    Dishes piled high, in the kitchen sink
    And all they want to do is chant……

    Crazy parents walkin’ ’round with sleep in their eyes
    And all they want to do is chant, chant
    Tired-eyed diaper wearers who ain’t afraid to cry
    And all they want to do is
    All they want to do is chant
    And wet their pants

    Can’t feel the screech comin’ out their teeth
    They want to tantrum (woooo!)
    They want to get down (woooo!)
    All they want to do is
    All they want to do is chant

    Well, the toddler plugged the men’s room with a bathroom sponge
    And all they want to do is chant, chant
    To keep mama busy with all the toilets she can plunge
    And all they want to do is chant
    But that don’t keep the boys from makin’ a ruckus too
    And all they want to do is chant, chant
    The girls still give the drywall all the artwork they can do
    And all they want to do is
    All they want to do is chant
    And pick the plants

    [kazoo and toy drum set solo]

    We barely made our car seats for the therapy route
    As Dad backed it down the driveway, we could hear Mama shout
    She said, “Just come back here quickly,
    You forgot your coat!”
    I’ll get more coffee
    ‘Cause all they want to do is chant
    And eat the crayons

    Never mind the screech comin’ out my teeth
    They want to tantrum (woooo!)
    They want to get down (woooo!)
    All they want to do is
    All they want to do is chant
    All they want to do is chant and bang some pans
    All they want to do is chant

    1. Oh, delight, Bear.

      Were you composing poetry before StF posted his bit? Or, is this inspired by him? Or, am I just spouting off?

      Save those words. The little ones, when they become big ones, will likely enjoy what you wrote.

      Carry on in grace

      1. St. Funogas is definitely an inspiration in more ways than one! 🙂 I consider him the bard of SB.

        I write poems every once in a blue moon when the mood strikes. But I’ve been a musician for thirty years and an incorrigible smartass for always, so, song parodies are a natural medium. Glad you enjoyed it. 🙂 I will show my kids someday and in the meantime I will continue teaching them about good music, so someday they will ‘get’ what I’m parodying. I was so proud of the 5yo the other day when she asked to put on a specific song and I didn’t understand which one at first, but then I realized she was requesting some Dionne Warwick!

        1. That was a good one Bear! It’s all in the brain wiring, neither of us can sing a song without creating parodies of it and rhyming words are just a part of the wiring too. We can’t help it. Blessing…or curse?? 🙂

          1. “Blessing…or curse?? ”

            YES! 🙂

            (I’ve long used the number of songs which are *simultaneously* stuck in my brain as a gauge of my level of tiredness at that moment…)

            BTW I had a thought get stuck in my head today, about our potential retreat property, and it collided with the inspiration from your epic New Years poem, so a new parody will be coming soon. After more chocolate and coffee.

      1. Ohhhh yes, I feel ya. Repeated for months!! Until something new takes its place.
        We had a daughter on the spectrum and one of her things was not only repeating the words, but demanding incessantly that other people say them too. Her therapists were able to sometimes use that as an incentive to complete a task…

    2. Bear,
      That’s a wonderful rendition! Kinda makes a person happy doesn’t it?
      Not only is the tune stuck in your mind, but our granddaughter and now my wife…at the same time, harmonizing?!
      I even watched a recorded 3.5 hours of the Eagles Farewell Tour in Australia today.
      I don’t drink, but if I did…..

      God Bless you and your grandchildren.

      Semper Fi

  24. We had a fairly eventful week here. For starters, we finally culled some of our excess roosters, a first for us which resulted in several lessons. A few are: 1), the YouTube and Rumble videos make it look a lot easier than it really is. 2), you get a lot less meat than you would expect, especially if the birds are from laying stock, as opposed to meat birds. 3), it’s really not that hard. It’s tedious and messy, but it’s certainly within the ability of most people.

    Our dryer heating element conked out on us, so we had to order a new one, but my Lady was able to repair it in about 30 minutes once the part arrived, for about $30. Certainly beats a repair bill, or even worse, buying a new one. She’d had to repair it before when I was on the road, so she had experience on this that I didn’t. So I swallowed my male pride and went back to the kitchen. Of course this happened while there was a load in both the washer and dryer, but fortunately we had several drying racks. During warmer weather, we could have used the wind/solar powered clothes drying system I installed a few years ago, but that wasn’t a good option this week.

    I mad a couple batches of soups this week…vegetable beef and lentil and sausage…most of which was frozen for later use. Anytime I do soups, I usually make a big batch, then freeze about half of it in smaller containers for easy quick meals. I also opened the garden to our chickens to let them do some fertilizing and aerating for us for the next few weeks, as well as sharpening some chain saws in preparation for some cutting next week, weather permitting.

    Weather has for the most part been fairly mild, so we haven’t been running the wood stove. We have noticed a significant drop in our electric bill since we replaced the doors and windows last year, and installed the stove, but as others have noted, YMMV.

    Regarding the political landscape, I think we’re going to see some significant turbulence over the next several months, I think some “soft secessions”, essentially state and local governments ignoring or refusing to enforce various federal edicts, may occur. Cities are going to continue to get ugly. And some forms of persecution for conservatives, particularly conservative Christians, are certainly going to increase. Times like this make me glad that “I live back in the woods you see, just the woman and the kids and the dogs and me…”…and, well, you know the rest.

  25. Arizona Patriots!
    You’re being called to action re: the election audit, and concerns that selection of the auditors could result in skewed findings. This is a critically important opportunity to demonstrate evidence of the greatest political train robbery in history. Please call on the politicians listed below per the article which is also linked.


    From the article: “We believe data specialist Jovan Pulitzer is an expert who should perform an independent audit of the county’s results”

    Senator Karen Fann – 602-926-5874

    Senator Warren Peterson – 602-926-4136

    Senator Michelle Ugenti-Rita – 602-926-4480

  26. Hey you guys,,,,,spent the week packing for the MOVE ,,,back to the Idaho ranch ,found a buyer for all the dirt bikes and three wheelers ,5 of them ,i know I know , but age has snuck up on me ,
    Can not get in to the place till winters over,so I pack and sort ,it’s amazing the amount of STUFF that grows and grows that I might need some day ? I have a team of oxen that are dog gentle ,,and can out work any team of horses,just slower,,, I should sell them but I’m getting soft in my old age , or just soft in the head? Was ready to load them up and just couldn’t do it , one of them I had to pull when he was born,had to blow that first breath of life in to him to get him to breathe ,,,ever kiss a calf? Wet and sloppy ,
    Two more tractors to sell and all the grain equipment,some of the cattle equipment , all the milking and dairy equipment including the cheese vat ,,, bee keeping equipment and supplies(haven’t had bees for a while) might keep one milk pot just to remind me of the good old days (6AM–6PM 24-7) ha ha ,,,going to keep the round corral , I have been in the past a real sucker for a good horse ,might be the death of me yet. ,,,
    The high country is calling , have you ever seen the first flower of spring popping up through the snow,,,(there yellow )
    You know out there it’s so dark at night you can see the milky way, and some times the northern lights ,when a jet flys over its like you have been violated , or the time when you get up in the morning and find that a big cat has spent the night on the hay pile ,,,just one print in the dust,
    And a bed in the hay ,,,,yes that world is still there ,
    Was going to talk about wood heat and such ,DW and I have burned wood since 1978 ,,,,,i got her a 25ton wood splitter for Christmas this year ,,,funny thing she hasn’t used it yet ,i did show her how ,, we had blow down last week from the storm ,she still hasn’t used it ,oh well it works great back to point ,,next to a good power saw ,get a power splitter
    ,,last year I got her a new chainsaw for Christmas ,, she hasn’t run it yet ,hum,maybe I better rethink things
    Tea and chocolate
    And ofcorse who is John Galt??

    1. Oldhomesteader, “yes that world is still there;”… Sigh. Yes, the gloriousness of the wilderness. That is why some of us love camping! For a short time, we are able to experience those joys .

      When I explain to my family that I would love property where I can’t see any neighbors, they look at me as if I’m weird. Good thing they love me anyway.

      Best wishes on packing and the move this spring. Please do accept help and save your back. Same thing I say to my dad. I try to help him as much as he will let me. “We need you for the long haul!,” I tell him.

      Btw, if your OPSEC isn’t compromised, can you reference where the dairy equipment, et cetera will be sold and when?

      Lastly, my condolences on your dear mother. May she rest in peace. Krissy

  27. The National Pulse is reporting a reveal…


    I have wondered about the work of Frank Luntz for a long time now, having watched him for many years. Check out the reference to communications with Hunter.

    If true, I have the feeling we’re going to learn a lot about betrayal from those who appeared to have come from within our own conservative political ranks. This is probably just the beginning. Revelations about some of these folks will come as little or no surprise, but others will likely shock us.

    There is a lot of room for difference of opinion, civil discourse, and vigorous debate, but betrayal is another matter entirely.

  28. Mrs. Rawles,
    Patrick McManus’s book, “A Fine and Pleasant Misery” is a favorite of our family. I used to read it out loud to the entire family in the evenings when we were camping while the children were growing up. My favorite story/chapter is Grogan’s War Surplus. I recall Jim mentioning that story in the blog previously. I still have some of the items purchased 50 years ago from my local equivalent of Grogan’s – Miller’s Surplus in Ontario, California. (Is that a bullet hole in the pair of pants I purchased?)

  29. I scored 3 6-pack cases of wide-mouth 2 quart Ball canning jars complete with lids and rings for $10.99 a case last week at a local grocery store. I saw them, went home and checked the price on Amazon which was $36+ for 6-jar case or $25+ for 2 jars and returned to the store and bought all they had. There were NO canning lids, regular or wide-mouth, on the shelves. I am reading up on vacuum sealing dry foods and assembling the necessary tools. Rain Country on You tube has a wealth of prepping information. Her tag line is — “God is Good All the Time”, to which I add a hearty AMEN!

    1. I’m finding jars in smaller hardware stores. Forget the big box stores or online. Got 36 wide mouth quarts jars last week, and will try to repeat every pay check.

      You are correct, they won’t be available for long.

  30. I spent several days making up a spreadsheet, starting with the “Strategic Relocation” guide, of all 50 states, and then (since my husband isn’t a prepper), tracked down all the hard data from each state about their income tax rates, property tax/thousand rate, average home price, average cost of living, whether or not they tax social security, 401k plans or inheritances, sales tax, and then stuck in crime statistics, weather statistics, average rainfall, USDA growing zones, and gun freedom.

    As much as I’d love to buy 100 acres in the American Redoubt, my husband wants to move someplace warmer, so we’ll likely follow James Howard Kuntsler’s advice to find agricultural property within the hub of a small “city” (we call them towns) that has been decimated by globalization (i.e., property is cheap), but still has the infrastructure in place to be self-sustaining as a community if SHTF.

    Using these criteria, I reduced the 50 prospects down to the Ozark Plateau (Missouri, Arkansas, Oklahoma). My 17-year-old has already taken the initiative to see what it would take to transfer her hairdressing license to those states. MY professional license will be a lot more tricky if I want to continue working instead of retiring, so that will be this week’s project.

    My husband wants to “stay put” in our deep blue liberal state until the youngest graduates high school in 3.5 years, but my gut tells me our economy doesn’t have that long until it tanks. There’s a lot of things we’d have to do to sell our existing house, so most of my “preps” for the foreseeable future (now that I’ve got beans and bandages stocked up … our state has draconian gun laws) will involve tackling a lot of deferred maintenance so that, if we have to sell in a hurry, we can dump this place and relocate to the target area.

    1. Anna, we are in similar situations, though our kids are a little older. I’m with you on getting out now if you can. (My hubby had to move in high school, and he was just fine.) We, too, are moving out of a major blue state — been planning for awhile — since hubby is retiring (at 60) from his job near the city this year, so we are off to the greater KC region. It isn’t a perfect “retreat” area, but it has politics closer to ours, and jobs for our kids. (Our oldest just got hired for an in-demand job in the SW suburbs for next fall and she is doing the licensing paperwork now.) It’s also similar travel distance to our elderly parents and closer to my siblings. So we are soon traveling there hoping to find a house (the market is tight), in a more rural area within decent driving distance to our daughter. We are fortunate all three of our kids are going with us — in fact, our oldest has never even been there! I am packing, going to miss my garden this year (and our acreage we’ve been on for almost 18 years), but ready for the next adventure. Good luck to you!

  31. We had a productive week.

    We received the last of the garden seeds. We also picked up some seed starter trays. We are trying to start most of our own plants this year since we put up a greenhouse this summer.

    We also made some progress in ways to store the food. I bought some pint freezer bags that we use to freeze corn. They are typically hard to find around here. My wife found some Walmart brand canning lids and bought 8 boxes. We also got a new gasket for the canner.

    I put together an AR from a stripped lower that I have had sitting around for a few years and picked up some spare batteries for some of my red dot sights.

    We also worked on cleaning out the detached garage and cut some firewood. Hopefully we can keep up the momentum into next week.

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