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.  We always welcome you to share your own successes and wisdom in your e-mailed letters. We post many of those –or excerpts thereof — in this column, in the Odds ‘n Sods Column, and in the Snippets column. Let’s keep busy and be ready!

Jim Reports:

I am anxiously counting down the days until my turn to The Rawles Ranch.

Meanwhile, I’m nearly done with revamping the Elk Creek Company web site with pre-1965 silver coin pricing. The initial multiplier that I’ll be using is 23 times silver face value to determine pricing for those opting to pay in Federal Reserve Note (FRN), cash, checks, or USPS PMOs. As you can see from my revised pricing in pre-1965 silver, we have been robbed by our own government through currency debasement and inflation, since 1964.  (My gun prices now range from $19.50 to $250  – in silver.  That may look absurd, but it illustrates how much spending power the Dollar has lost since the U.S. Treasury robbed us of sound, specie-backed currency.)

My new consulting rate is $5 per hour in pre-1965 silver coinage, or 23 times that = $115 per hour, if paying in FRNs.

The revised web pages and shopping cart should go live on or before July 1st. That will coincide with our week-long Independence Day sale. Thanks for your patience.

Now, over to my lovely and hard-working wife, Lily…

Avalanche Lily Reports:

Dear Readers,

It’s been a hot week and it’s getting hotter.  The northwest is supposed to be experiencing temperatures in the triple digits from Sunday until at least Thursday with it seeming that the high temperatures may last longer than that.  (I have looked at the long-range forecast, we’ll be in the high nineties and triple digits in the afternoons for at least the next two and a half weeks.) We are expecting temperatures from about twenty degrees to forty degrees higher than the average.  Woo Hee, with me now experiencing a mature women’s “personal heat waves”…  I am already very hot with the temperatures in the eighties, I cannot imagine high nineties and in the hundreds…  I have been doing all that I can ahead of time to minimize our stress and our animals’ heat stress. Also, to prep our property for possible upcoming fire season.  I mowed a portion of our meadow and an area where our driveway is near the county road, just to add an extra fire break to what the road provides.  I need to start rotating sprinklers around the house and outside of the corrals to keep the forest duff very damp.

We do not have air conditioning, therefore we open the house all up at night when the temperatures are considerably cooler in the fifties and sixties and then shut up the house in the morning before the sun comes up.  That entails closing all windows and bringing down their shades. This tends to keep the house cooler than outside most of the day, but we find by late afternoon, the indoor temperatures are within a few degrees of the outdoor temps until sundown. Next week the nighttime temperatures will be in the seventies.  We won’t be cooling down too much during the nights.  Additionally, I have scrubbed, bleached, and refilled a water trough just for us people to dip into to cool off while doing heavy garden work.  😉 But, I haven’t used it yet.  Maybe next week? We are also getting outside early in the mornings to get the heavy gardening work done.  By noon, we are usually forced inside until around seven or later.

We have quite the population of chickens. Therefore, I have taken the birds that were mine and have put them into the garden in the Chicken Tractor that Jim and I made last summer.  Miss Eloise and I are building her a chicken tractor just like mine, for her birds to be in, in the near-house meadow.  We bought some large tent stakes to stake down the Tractor so that it will be more difficult for predators to lift it up and take a chicken, like they did at the end of the summer last year, when I had some of my birds in a tracor in the orchard.

This week we had our first calf born for the year, our first bull calf in quite a few years.  He is a vigorous little fella. Friday evening, after the sun went down and the air had cooled considerably, I went out to check on all the cows and to give them their evening rations.  I stuck around to watch them eat and to assess the status of the other two soon to be mothers. (We are expecting two more calves in the weeks to come.) I watched the calf gamboling around the corral.  At one point, he was doing “sixty”‘ back and forth non-stop.  He was a blur going by he was so fast.  This coming week we have to de-horn him and steer-ize him.  Two jobs that, I find to be very unpleasant for both us and the poor calf.

In the greenhouse in the last bed, I planted the Honeydew melon and sweet potatoes. These are plants that usually don’t do very well in our region, but, if the summer continues to be hot, then we might do well, after all.

I cleaned out some spent greens bussing trays and added the well-composted kitchen compost, I also filled three additional bussing trays with soil and compost in preparation for planting for the fall. and winter gardens.

I weeded around the plants of the onions, Delicata squash, and Zucchinis.  I planted new broccoli seedlings that I had started about two or three weeks ago. I need to weed around the plants of the seven rows of potatoes.

I harvested garlic scapes from three of my four garlic beds. Two of the beds are volunteer garlic beds from not completely harvested garlic in the past. The other two are located in the greenhouse and the herb garden.  The herb garden garlic is a few weeks behind in maturity than the others.  I chopped the scapes and froze them.

Miss Violet and I continued to prepare her Edible Flower Garden’s bed in between fighting the heat and mosquitoes.  We turned up all of the soil and picked out many grass roots and flower roots of the columbine-type flower that was occupying that space.  I have laid down three wheelbarrow loads of the composted kitchen compost.  As of right now, it needs to be mixed in and I want a few loads of cow manure compost added to it, then we can plant seeds.

The girls again helped me with the mowing of the Main garden paths this week.

I have been turning over my kitchen compost pile and watering it to speed up it’s decomposition.  This upcoming heat with watering it and turning it over will really cause it to decompose fast.  I have plans for it.

A complaining rant: I want to talk about the Annex garden for a moment. It has been neglected, badly.  It’s quite far from the house, it’s inundated with stupid bull thistles, the mosquitoes are even worse down there as it’s much closer to the open meadows and the river. I can’t seem to keep up with it and the house garden and greenhouse. So I have neglected it.  I have a large amount of kale there that I need to harvest.  I have more potatoes there, that are doing well. And if I get down there next week, I can weed those and stay on top of them.  I have carrots there, onions, beets, oats, wheat,  and some other veggies.  I gotta get down there and weed it!

I realize now that if I am going to grow more produce in the Annex garden, then I have to have it all planted by the end of May, because June gets too hot, too many mosquitos and sometimes lots of rain showers. This year, I also caught a cold that put me out of commission for two weeks for heavy work.  It is getting late in the season. I was planning on planting more squashes down there, but now I have to weed whack the right Annex garden and rototill it, a lot.  The Thistles are already two feet high in it, though it is well fertilized and ready to go, if I would weed whack and rototill it.  But now because of the heat, I only have a few hours to work in the day.

Anyway, I am not planting corn this year, we don’t eat it and it really doesn’t grow that well. And I’m not planting too many beans, we don’t really eat much of them, either.

I rode my bike numerous times around the ranch early in the day.

In Biblical Hebrew, I studied more Biblical grammar this week and worked on Psalm 58 and then jumped forward to Psalm 91, 92, 93, and 120, 121, 122, 148, 149, 150.

Let me remind you that the YHWH is God.  He is sitting on His throne and is watching all of us to see whom we will choose in this late hour.  Will we choose Him and His son Jesus and His narrow way?  Or will we choose Satan and His broad path to destruction? Will we choose man’s Satan’s vaccination Mark — the mRNA genetic code, for the convenience of working at our jobs, having an income, being able to travel to visit relatives overseas? The “getting back to normal?” Or will we see that this is what Jesus warned us about in the book of Revelation?   Narrow is the road to eternal life and very few there be that find it.  Count the cost and choose this day whom you will serve.

May you all have a very blessed and safe week.

– Avalanche Lily, Rawles

o o o

As always,  please share and send e-mails of your own successes and hard-earned wisdom and we will post them in the “Snippets” column this coming week.  We want to hear from you.