Editors’ Prepping Progress

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

Jim Reports:

I’m still traveling. So most of today’s column will come from my darling wife, Avalanche Lily.

I’ve still been exercising daily. I’ve been averaging 15 miles a day on the bike. Yesterday, I logged 27 miles. That was my longest ride since I arrived here. With all of the Christmas goodies still scattered around the kitchen, it is a good thing that I’m getting so much exercise — or else I’d be gaining weight.

I’m planning to return to the ranch in the first week of January.

By the way, we are hoping that he new Archive USB Sticks will be orderable by around January 12th. Stay tuned.

Avalanche Lily Reports:

Dear Readers,
I hope you had wonderful Christmas and Hanukkah celebrations with friends and family, this past week.

You may remember that last week I had said that I had “spent way too much time on the Internet”  Well, this week I received a flash notification on my computer from YouTube stating that I, with the help of Miss Violet, (she uses my computer to watch her stuff) we had spent an average of nine hours a day last week watching YouTube videos.  Oy va voy!  That statistic shamed my sensibilities.  So, I forced myself out of my funk and away from the stupid computer (some things I’ve watched are helpful and educational, of course) and got back on the stick and have begun to accomplish prepping activities, once again.

Early in the week, through a YouTube video, I heard of folks using clear totes as small cold frames for growing greens in the winter, outside. What a great idea!  So I used two long shallow under-the-bed type totes. I first planted lettuces and beet seeds in a raised bed in the greenhouse, and watered them. Then I put the inverted totes over them as a cover, and then covered those with the hooped bed plastic.  So now I have a greenhouse within a green house within a greenhouse–three layers of protection.  I have read that each layer brings you a climate zone warmer.  Therefore we have moved to a Zone 7 or 8, maybe…, under those shallow totes.  So, we will see if these seeds will germinate soon.  If this works, then I will be moving most of the winter growing back outside.

Also this week, I took all of the garden containers from the indoor garden and put them outside.  I put some of the soil that I had burned a few weeks ago into a bussing tray.  It smelled very strongly of burnt vegetation.  I don’t think I want that in my guest bedroom.  I will have to rethink on this indoor gardening thing a bit more.  Miss Eloise is asking to take over the guest bedroom.  She currently shares a room with Miss Violet.  I haven’t said  “Yay or Nay”  yet.  Currently, I only have the tomatoes left in the temporary Bedroom Greenhouse.

Every morning, this week, I have been taking time to clean up the manure around the ranch where the animals are loafing: the corrals, arena, parking lot, some small woods near the house, the meadow, etc., and transporting it to the Extension garden.  I have filled about 8 wheelbarrows full, so far. We now have a much cleaner ranch and are well on our way to a new well-fertilized garden area.

The girls and I went to a regional hot spring for a day, to swim and get some exercise, to get a different kind of airing out.  It was a very pleasant time.  There is just something so fun about putting on your bathing suit in the middle of winter, running outside in thirty degree temperatures, and jumping into a very warm mineral rich natural spring water pool. 🙂 It’s far better than swimming in a cooler chlorine pool inside a hotel during the winter. I’m always cold in hotel pools and feel thoroughly pickled when I get out. I think we might return to the hot springs for another visit this coming week.

I walked several times around the ranch for 45 minutes each time and also rode my bike in the parking area after some recent rains melted all of the snow, there.  Jim keeps reporting to me via Skype that he is riding his bike 15+ miles a day.  I’m very impressed, Jim!  Way to go!  I wish we could ride with you, there…

All of the rain in the past week melted nearly all of the snow. 🙁  No skiing! On Friday we received another two inches of dry, fluffy snow.

During the past few months we had received orders of nuts, peanuts, raisins and bought many other staples: sunflower seeds, beans, Jasmine rice.  We have buckets of regular rice, but, I also enjoy Jasmine, and have added it to our stores.  I spent time removing these items from their original packaging and putting them into jars and buckets and reorganizing our pantry area. Jim will be very pleased with me since we can now walk through the pantry hall without knocking down items or tripping on items.  😉

I reorganized a kitchen drawer filled with cooking utensils and a tote filled with Mason jar caps.

I cleaned out our junk drawer. That was full of hand tools, pens, extra refrigerator magnets, scissors, tapes of all kinds, strings, and threads of all kinds, rubber bands, batteries, lighters for fire building, super glue and other glues, nightlights not currently needed, little paper note and sticky pads, business cards, fish hooks, ceiling hooks, candle pieces, nails, shoe laces, paper clips, band aids, pieces of paracord, synthetic rope, 10 ml syringes for animal care, metal rings used to keep index cards together, screws, needle, thermometer, razors used mainly for scraping the glass window of the wood stove, a hair scrunchy, electronic do-dads, plastic bread baggie clips, a box of waterproof matches, magnifier tweezers, a few old tooth brushes to be used on the hard to reach places one wishes to clean with a small brush, marbles, a 13-cartridge Glock .45 magazine fully loaded ;-), and other odds and ends that we didn’t know where else to put them.  It totally reminded me of my grandmother’s junk drawer, from when I was a child,  I loved to go through hers.  I loved finding those perfect miniature replica red flashlights in there, which I coveted.  I would test all of the batteries in the drawer to find the battery with the most life and then would play with the flashlight and would ask, “Grandma can I have this?” It was so cute!

Jim, I found several of your small needle-nosed pliers in the junk drawer.  The blue and green handled pairs! 😉 Jim was looking for them just before he headed south on his trip.

Seriously, if all you had was the stuff in your junk drawer, could what is in the drawer help you survive a grid down, TEOTWAWKI event? 🙂

I culled, washed, and organized the refrigerator.

And now, story time….

On Friday morning, I went out to feed the beasties. My Matriarch cow, L., didn’t show up as I was tossing out the hay to them.  This is very unusual behavior for her.  I called and called her. A little earlier, I had heard some low mooing while getting wood from the woodshed.  The other cows mooed a few times.  You know — they communicate with each other when separated.  When she didn’t come, I started to look for her.  I kinda had that dread feeling that I would find something wrong, just because of the other things that had been happening lately on Fridays… this month…  I stood and called and listened for her.  I heard the low moo again.  I walked around the hen house and saw some movement in the direction of the woods.  It was just getting light.  It was her.  I stared at her through the poor light. She appeared okay. I called her and she acted funny, like she wanted to come but couldn’t.  I looked around a bit more. Then I saw a small dark figure in front of her.  I stepped closer and saw that she had given birth to a calf!

The calf arrived a month earlier than I was expecting. We did see the “deed” done back in April, but I wasn’t sure if the calf would come in December or January.  I missed her udder bagging up. But that was because that young bull, the daddy, was still nursing her when she’d let him….because we checked her udder last week and hadn’t noticed any bagging up and I looked for the tell-tale mucus that cows sometimes discharge when birth time is nearing. Our bull is not related to the mother.  The mother adopted him when he came to us at four months of age. That was last fall, a year ago.   When he arrived he discovered that she was still lactating and kept her in lactation up to this point. He is now 19 months old.

Back to the calf:  It was on it’s feet in front of her and was wobbling around. Yahoo! The temperature was about 32 degrees and snowing lightly. The calf was mostly dry.  Mama did a great job of licking that baby and drying it. I watched for a few minutes while it searched for her teats and I saw it have success.

Later in the morning, I went back out to check on the mom and her babe.  I saw it, and I thought it was a bull calf.  At that point, I hadn’t had a real good look yet.  They were deep under some fir trees in a nice little copse area.  It was nursing vigorously.  The other cows and horses were very close by, keeping guard on the mother/calf pair.  I love watching how all of the animals, cows and horses, interact with each other, respect each other’s space, yet protect each other in the herd.  I am included and accepted in the herd, too, as long as I keep a respectful distance from the baby. I am the one that feeds them, too, most of the time, in deep winter.

I have a dilemma.  I want to get mama and the baby into the barn for several reasons: I want the baby to have a warmer place to lay down and rest.  I want the baby accessible to me in order to de-horn it, in a few days.  Snd I am a little bit worried about predators during the night, since we have had a coyote on the property recently.  I saw it’s tracks while skiing last week. S. (our super alert horse) has been on high alert a few times recently.  Miss Eloise heard a stampede, two mornings ago, around five in the morning.  So I suspect that some predator has been around. But sometimes they’ll run for fun, too.

Sometimes when we hear the animals running, they are running towards the house and we assume that something scared them. One summer moonlit night, older son was out by the river with his fiance (now his wife) and they saw all of the cows run across the meadow and head up towards the house. A large low to the ground animal with a long tail was chasing them.  It was probably a very young Mountain Lion. When the cows headed up towards the house the animal didn’t follow but kept going straight ahead to the woods, and leapt over the fence and left our ranch.  Therefore we are assuming that when we hear them run up to the house, habitation, if they are being chased, the predator will leave, not continue it’s pursuit, because it doesn’t want to get near the house.  Or, the other alternative of which we have also witnessed, is that all of our animals will ban together as one body, and will chase a predator off the property. We have seen them do this with a black bear two summers ago, and with a distant neighbor’s dog who was wandering far from home and ended up on our ranch and thought it was fun to chase the big animals.  When these events occur at night and we are not outside it’s hard to say exactly which of these two scenarios is happening.  We have not lost any large animals to predators up to this point.  We pray we never will.

All of this to say, that as of dark Friday night, I have tried twice to get mama and baby into the corrals and barn and have not succeeded.   Mama is having none of it and the baby is too heavy for me to carry with mama chasing me.  She could kill me if she hit me hard enough.  So, in one of my tries, I was able to find out that we have a little heifer.  We have not named her yet.  And unfortunately for OPSEC reasons we cannot let you, our readers, name her, either.  I’m sorry. Well — you could suggest names down in the Comments and we could let you know if we picked one of them, but not tell you the exact name chosen. (I’m sorry, but OPSEC dictates…)

It seems that the calf and its mother will be staying outside on Friday night.  I have prayed over the area for angels to protect them and our fence lines.  I have brought mama hay, wet cob and water. I also brought the baby some straw to make a nest in a tight little area between some fir saplings.  It’s great protected spot.  Animals are very intelligent, even the babies instinctively know where the safest spots are to rest.

I am also planning on spending some time out there tonight with a sleeping bag, a ground pad, a flashlight, and Mr. Gaston Glock, for company.  I hope that all of the horses and other cows will also be staying very close by us for the added protection– that I can safely assume they will give. That has been our experience in the past.  Our hoses and cattle are creatures of habit–much like humans.

The temperatures are supposed to get down to about 24 tonight, but it’s only supposed to be brief snow flurries through the night. So really the conditions will be “dry”.  I hope the clouds clear off for awhile to see the stars…I will update you all in the comments on Saturday morning.  I am so happy for the joy that the birth of this calf brings to us. Ch. (our recently deceased horse)  would have stood guard over mama and baby if she were still with us.  🙁  Such is life on a ranch.

Just a little news update: China, Russia and Iran are having joint naval exercises on Friday until Monday in the Gulf of Oman which is just before the Straits of Hormuz. Of course 20% of the world’s oil traverses through there, on its way to market.  This alliance of these nations is found in the Book of Ezekiel chapter 38-39 which talks about the Gog-Magog war.  How close are we to the coming of our Lord?

We need to be very diligent with keeping our vessels filled with the Holy spirit and not be slack in our prepping as the LORD GOD so leads each one of us.

May you all have a very blessed and safe week and a blessed New Year!

– Avalanche Lily, Rawles

o o o

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




47 Comments

  1. Well, congrats on your new baby calf! I hope she does well, and it sounds like she will if you have relatively dry weather and she is already nursing. I understand how challenging it can be to get a new momma cow to cooperate when you want them to move to a more predator-proof location. We ultimately decided that leaving horns on our cows helps them all protect themselves, but every operation is different of course.

    As for names, may I humbly submit my suggestion for some feminine version of John, since she was born on 12/27, which is the feast of St John the Apostle, the patron saint of writers!). ;). What fun! I hope you end up with a fabulous name for her!

  2. It’s been a quiet week. Have you ever sold a firearm and later regretted it? I did. It took some hunting but this week I found an identical one NIB and bought it. Ah….

    I also watched a great movie that was recommend by Mr. Rawles. It is ‘E.M.P. 333 Days’ available to rent on Amazon for $2.99. An 11 year old girl must fend and fight for herself while trying to find her father. As one reviewer described it, “A wonderful little movie with tons of teaching moments”

  3. Congrats on the calf; some good things happening at last! Even sweet feed wouldn’t entice mamma to follow you? They can be stubborn but if sounds like she’d fight off anything that tried to attack. For a name, how about “Sheleg”(snow)? 😉

    1. שלום אני,

      אולי ״שלג״ 🙂 בואו נראה

      Yes, I tried the sweet feed method. Both trying to get her to follow the bucket and putting little piles a bit apart from each other. Nope, no go. I will write about my night with them if a few minutes. 🙂

      לֹלי

      1. Curiosity got to me – saw the video and I appreciate the Hebrew lyrics. Presently I am taking a few courses with Charis Bible college and find the language fascinating. Consider naming the little one ” emet “. Wonderful to see the Hebrew script use the alpha and omega to represent truth.

  4. I have been off all week and have been doing a lot of little chores. Finished spreading the tri-axle load of bank gravel (did this all by hand and wheel barrel. Will be getting more in the spring but hope to have a tractor by then. Our well is back in action with the new a submersible pump. I am thinking about having it baled out since the well is over 50 years old and I don’t know if it has been done before. We got new neighbors but we haven’t met them yet since they are busy getting moved in. Neighbor butchered two cows so we have another quarter side of beef coming. Inventoried all my gasoline, propane, kerosene and lamp oil and placed it on my white board in barn workshop. I had 14 gallons of ethanol free gas that was purchased in June of 2017. I was a little perplexed by this since I buy may gas in September when the formula changes. Perhaps that is when things were tense with Iran. Anyway the weather here has been warmer than normal so I put some in the truck and generator to use up while it’s warm (I run the barn right now on a generator). My favorite project had to be the repurposing of two Stainless steel IKEA wine bottle holders that I picked up at Salvation Army. I screwed them on the wall in the barn and that is were I store my aerosol cans of Fluid Film, penetrating oil, White lithium grease, etc. still re-organizing stuff in the barn and workshop. Awhile back I pick up 2 wood shipping crates from work that were about 8’ long by 4’ high by 2’ wide. I have been busy filling those up with items that I don’t use or don’t use a lot. I am also trying to organize my peg boards. Noticed that I had extra spark plugs for my chainsaw and some other devices but I don’t think I have any for my generators so I put those on my list to buy. I have to get our main snow blower into town to have it repaired. I can’t figure it out. It is getting way too much fuel, choke isn’t stuck.

    1. Does your snow blower have a diaphragm carb or float carb or…?

      If it has a diaphragm carb, the diaphragms will get stiff and need replacement. Usually that starves it for gas but you never know. Sometimes you find yourself running partial choke to compensate.

      If it has a float carb the float needle will frequently gum up and can stick or may not seal allowing the float level to rise to high and provide too much gas. From a distance I would give this good odds of being your problem as something the size of a snow blower could have a float carb. Might be able to fix it with no parts but just some cleaner and compressed air but a kit is always good to keep you going a few touble free years.

      Small engine carb kits usually run in the neighborhood of $10 in my experience. Cheap whole replacement carbs are all over Amazon and work fine by most reviews. If the carb has not been adjusted a lot to compensate for something wrong, any adjustment screws can be screwed all the way in carefully counting and recording turns and partial turns and then removing them. After blowing everything apart and cleaning it just put the screws in all the way and then back them out the same as before and you should be in pretty good shape.

      If you already know all this please excuse my advice. Some people are intimidated by carbs for some reason but if you are not I hope I have not insulted your intelligence.

      1. I am fine with small engines. Everything seems fine. I hadn’t run it very much since we didn’t live here full time so it only go run a few times a year for the past 3 years. I only use ethanol free gas. Now that I’m writing this I didn’t check to see if there was spark. Hmmmmm.

    1. Hi Larry,

      So I have been thinking about those miniature flashlights. They were made of a silver colored metal body with a red plastic cone. I believe they were “Ever Ready” Flashlights??? They took one AA battery. Does that ring a bell? 😉 I thought they were just sooo cute when I was a kid!

      Blessings,

      Lily

  5. Sorting and organizing has been my ongoing project. I just feel inclined to know what we have where. Prayers for the calf, mama and you out there tonight.

    Final company left this morning and the remainder of the family is working, so I’m here to hold down the fort. I’ve a ton of celery to process in the dehydrator. I also have all of the meat scraps that I’ve put in the crockpot to cook down and add to the dogs’ food.

    Two of the sleds are not working well, so we will be having them looked at. Older machines are frustrating, but a whole lot cheaper than new ones! Besides, we don’t need the racing power of a new snowmobile. Though my son might be saving up for one that will go anywhere anytime.

    We are so thankful for a peaceful and bountiful Christmas this year. It is definitely a temptation not to eat all the goodies we have been blessed with! The practical gifts were welcomed and appreciated. There was no whining; just joy. Looks like we have socks aplenty.

    Blessed

  6. Yes, congrats on the baby calf and holding the fort down while Jim is away. Skype is a great way to communicate. We did it with our family while moving to our retreat. We had Thanksgiving on skype during our first year. Not quite the same but probably the next best alternative.
    We spent most of the week with family and friends. Other than that most of the pantry and medical/first aid/toiletry area has been straightened out and reorganized. Just one more section to do under the stairs. Doing a little PSK31. Looking forward to finishing the basement wall so we can put our radio cabinet up the way it was back home. This will begin right after New Years…the whole family has been put on notice! That’s the NEXT project!
    We are also guilty of spending way too much time on the computer. Mostly YouTube and mostly for learning.
    Thank you for the “heads up on the China/Russia joint exercises.
    Hoping everyone has a safe and blessed New Years day and for the return of our Lord.

  7. Murdoch’s had a sale on .556 at $249.00 per thousand.Who could resist? Made in the USA.
    Somehow a Ruger AR-.556 Pistol fell into the cart. Granny loves it and now she wants a
    SIG Romeo-5. The length and light weight make it a good choice for an older lady.
    The never ending fire wood splitting took up some time this week but that’s good.

    We are working hard to top off our preps as much as possible.The kids and grand kids all live 1100 miles away.They think we are delusional when it comes to prepping but I cling to my fantasy that when things go bad maybe they can make it to our place and we can save them.

    1. NormlChuck,

      I was just at the gun shop a week ago and was looking at an AR pistol with brace. I just about put it on layaway but I don’t need another gun. But then again that has never stopped me before. My friend has one and loves it.

      1. The Ruger was evaluated on this site back in June with high marks except for trigger pull.Thats an easy fix.It appears that production has caught up with demand so prices are down somewhat.
        The security detail at our place will be just the two of us so we needed a shooter that she is comfortable with.

  8. JWR and Lily,

    My work has always taken me away from home for periods of time. I am in the Marine industry. Although it is less frequent than in the past I have to go offshore periodically without adequate communication and I frequently end up in some distant hotel prepping a boat for a remote job. I recently left for a job on my wife’s birthday and was gone for our anniversary.

    Whenever you leave, things always happen. Cars break. Animals die. Plumbing malfunctions. Kids get sick. ….

    The tough part though is being separated from you spouse. It can really suck all of your motivation out of you to be separated from probably your biggest source of motivation. It’s tough when you are “one flesh” and half of you is not there.

    Just wanted you to know someone understands how difficult this period has probably been. And although I am very careful to never claim I speak for God or know for sure what He would say, my guess is He will reward you for your faithfulness to your relative.

    Hang in there. Sounds like it is almost over.

  9. Based on some reading I have done in “A New Little Ice Age Has Started” I am considering putting down rock phosphate and green sand in my garden.

    Does anyone have experience with this stuff? Does it work? Any pitfalls?

    1. I use both on my garden, but use equal parts high calcium lime with the soft rock phosphate. Mix them together well just before application. I recommend the book “Nourishment Home Grown” by Dr. Beddoe.

      1. Thank you for the links.

        I have tested my soil in the past but the testers I have used covered only nitrogen and pH. Both have usually been good because I amend with manure and grass clippings and other things.

        This last year my garden production was poor but so was the production of many gardens and farms in my area. Ice Age Farmer has a link with a measure called GDD (growing degree days) which is basically how much useful heat for growth was present in a year. I was down 15% from the previous year so that may account for it. However I also know my natural soil is garbage where I live. Glacial till. I have been amending it and making it passable for 20 years. When I read “A New Little Ice Age Has Started” the authors experiences sounded familiar and made me start thinking of other amendments for a broader range of substances.

        I also have to provide quite a bit of minerals supplements to my goats because of the poor mineral content of much of my land.

        My next step will be to contact my County Co-op and find out how to get my soil tested professionally to zero in on the solutions.

        The comments in the first article you linked were quite interesting. Appears to be quite a divergence of opinion on this subject.

  10. Hey Everybody,

    I just spent an hour writing my comment about last night and hit something and it all deleted. Grr. It was just getting to the good part. I was telling about the clothes I wore, the animals behavior the beauty of the night, etc. I will have to write it again later. I have a few other things to do just now.

    Okay, I will try again to write about it. It’s a nice story. Maybe, I will have it for comments later today or tomorrow or it can be an article for this week.

    Lily

  11. Congrats on the calf, that must be an amazing thing to experience.

    Spent the week here cussing modern technology while trying to get one of my vehicles running. I wish they would have left the coil where it belongs instead of now there’s six of ’em, one on top of each spark plug. And a “crankshaft position sensor”? No wonder why I couldn’t find the distributor! I thought it was the cataracts. I’m gittin’ too old fer this stuff.

    On the bright side, this will be year three in my beekeeping adventures and a neighbor just taught me how to split hives. So I took inventory this week of my lumber on hand so I can start getting some more hives and frames put together to be ready come April. My DIY swarm traps this year worked so I’m hoping to catch more in 2020 and see if I can sell a few beehives to people who are just starting out.

    A wren, my favorite bird, got into the house on Christmas day and in all the frenzy crashed into a window and knocked herself silly. It took about 30 minutes to come back to her senses so I got to hold her and look at her up close while she recovered. They are fun little birds and it was a rare treat to hold her and feel her heart beating. There’s a small box of plumbing fittings in my garden shed, just below eye level, where they nest each spring and I can get within 18″ before she takes off. They eat insects so we have a good working relationship. 🙂

    2020 is going to be an interesting year in the world, I wish the best to everyone!

    1. Dear St. Funogaas,

      Thank you for writing in and sharing your wren story. It is a wonderful experience to hold God’s beautiful little critters, while helping them to recover from their bumps! 🙂 This gave me another smile. 🙂

      Blessings,

      Lily

  12. SVM… yes, the comments are SO encouraging and informative. They are my favorite part also so asked a few days back if they are included on the USB sticks to be available soon…YES was the answer and i look forward to them being one of the first items my gift $ is spent on. (Now i will need a Tablet that will read it!)

    A.L….looking forward to the story coming! (Having done this often when the computer times you out, grrr is right.) Word smithing doesn’t come easy so when you are tickled with your results, starting over is frustrating!

    Moving your winter crops out of the house is an accomplishment as well as feels very freeing. Just wintering over the few cold sensitive plants i do is frustrating and challenging. Have been trying to eliminate purchasing/starting from seed things that won’t be easily available in the future to see what is possible and the best way to do so WITHOUT growlights. The clear tote idea sounds like a season extender for us since no greenhouse is present.

    3AD Scout… kudos to your impressive effort in relocating such a large amount of gravel! Bit by bit is how it’s done. (It’s a slower pace for me than years gone by but one keeps going.)

    JBH… in my conversations locally, azomite rock dust has come up as a soil amendment that has done much to improve the health of plants. Gardens in the same area with much the same moisture, soil and sun show marked improvement with over those without.
    Will check into the phosphate and green sand also…Thanks for pointing them out!

    The beginning of the new year does have one looking to organize and eliminate that which is unnecessary. THANK YOU for being so humble as to share your abundantly stocked junk drawer with us so we are also motivated to tackle our own unmentionables. It ALWAYS seems a monumental task…bit by bit again, is the mode of operation!

    Far be it for me to suggest a name for your unexpected December blessing. Having waited for the appropriate name to be apparent for our puppy these past seven weeks, and not finding it yet, it might end up being voted on by the grands. Sometimes one makes it harder than it has to be 🙂

    Blessings as the New Year is celebrated together with those you love…

  13. Had a wake-up call last week when I ended up in the hospital with a bad case of pneumonia and realized my Will needs some work. My question is; What do I need to do to transfer my firearms?

    1. It depends on your state laws. Assuming you want to transfer to a son or daughter or other close relative I know of no federal restrictions and even some states that have background check requirements have exceptions for close family.

    2. Transfer of _ownership_ may be different than transfer of _possession_ depending on the state you are in and the age of your children. Firearms are just property and there are no special requirements for transferring ownership of that property. However, if your children are minors, or live in a different state, or are otherwise restricted from firearm ownership, they may not be able to legally take possession of the property.

      An example, if I die in Idaho and my will transfers all property to a child living in New York City, they would not be able to take possession of the firearms in NYC until applying for needed permits and waivers – including transfer tax.

  14. I’m not too concerned with Russia, China, and Iran doing war-games. As long as our Navy keeps it’s distance there should be no problems. If Saudi Arabia or Israel attempt to stick their noses (or warships) where they do not belong, screw them. No need to poke the bear, not yet anyway. The big question is, who are they war-gaming against? There is always a proposed target for war-game exercises no matter who is running the games.

    We war-game all the time with our allies. I keep hoping the next time we war game with S.Korea and Japan, that we would invite the N.Koreans to join in the fun. Instead of war gaming against N.Korea, we could war game against Indonesia or Australia, or maybe even India. It’s just supposed to be training after all. We could also try it with Iran against Saudi Arabia. Wouldn’t that be a hoot? Frankly I would trust Iran a heck of a lot more than I trust the Saudi Kingdom. That government is really not our friend, and never has been.

    Our government has picked some really lousy allies over the years. That is part and parcel to a lot of the global tensions at present. That failure on DC’s part is exactly why, almost to a man, our founders said “no entangling alliances”. Or as Thomas Jefferson put it: “Peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations, entangling alliances with none.” I think that is sage advice that our “ruling class” should be forced to heed.

    1. NorthKorea…The news was full of reports on Dec 23 and 24 that NK has a Christmas surprise!!!

      Um, where’d it go???

      Who is less trustworthy, N Korea or mainstream media?

      Carry on

  15. Am resuming “Swedish death cleaning” after a very busy Christmas week. I was given a book called Swedish Death Cleaning last Christmas, thinking it was a Millennial take on house cleaning. Wrong! It was written by a 70+ Swedish woman who wanted to speak frankly about the need for all of us to pare down our possessions as we age and near death. She is both straightforward and understanding, a nice combination. I have found you don’t need to be elderly to use her methods — we spend WAY too much time tending our stuff. And getting rid of unnecessary things leaves more room and time to manage preps. I also use Marie Kondo’s questions — do I love it? is it necessary? — to help with the paring down. I’ve successfully gone through several areas of the house this past year with much satisfaction!

  16. This may help. Take a clothes hanger and hang a shirt on it that has been worn for at least a day and has a good human scent. A lighter color would help. Then hang it on a limb near your cow/calf pair. Predators will smell human and if the wind blows they will see something moving and likely keep their distance. I do this in the fall of the year when the bucks enjoy rubbing my young pine trees to death. It’s not 100% but I’ve noticed that it keeps the deer away until they finally get wise to the trick.

  17. Several comments today.

    I am pleased to see more women posting to this blogsite. You bring great perspective and wisdom. Perhaps someday my sweet spouse will see fit to add her two cents.

    As I sit here listening to the Nutcracker Suite (so lovely), I imagine myself getting all my vast food stores organized so I can put my hands on what I want when I want it and prevent needless expenditure of time and money.

    Now, I am off to deliver two copies of the book on infant massage by Vimala Schneider to some neighbors who might have use for them soon.

    Carry on

  18. We finally got cleaned up from the Christmas season. We got the brush pile burned down, as that’s where we’re going to put our garden in the spring. It’s going to be double the size it was last year, since we also got a new food dehydrator and we’ll be putting it to good use. My new job as a process server is taking a lot of time away from home, but it’s also bringing in a better income than we’ve had in a while.

    Since it’s the end of the year, we’re going over all of our preps to see what we’re short on, or what needs to be swapped out. It’s a never ending process, that’s for sure!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.