To be prepared for a crisis, every Prepper must establish goals and make long-term and short-term plans. In this column, the SurvivalBlog editors review their week’s prep activities and planned prep activities for the coming week. These range from healthcare and gear purchases to gardening, ranch improvements, bug out bag fine-tuning, and food storage. This is something akin to our Retreat Owner Profiles, but written incrementally and in detail, throughout the year. Note that as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. We always welcome you to share your own successes and wisdom in the Comments. Let’s keep busy and be ready!
I had a couple of extra trips to the post office last week, mailing out the rush of orders that came in, from our recent sale at Elk Creek Company. Part of the heavy sales volume was attributable to the sale prices, but also the general angst among gun buyers is obvious. They want what they want, now. And since many gun stores have sold out most of their inventory and most gun shows have been canceled, our pre-1899 cartridge guns are much in demand. We’re offering folks some nice guns that are both practical to shoot and highly collectible, delivered right to their doorstep, with no stinking paperwork. I left the prices reduced on about 20 guns, for folks who might have missed out on the Independence Day weekend sale.
This past I’ve also been very busy chainsawing logs to stove length and splitting wood. The kids have handled all of the wood stacking. I’ll be happy when I have the firewood project done. Only then will feel free to move on to other projects. Haying season is just around the corner!
Avalanche Lily Reports:
The weather here has been lovely, but cool, only in the low seventies during the day with some rain showers off and on. It’s been great for my garden, but not so great for the locals who want to get their hay in. We’re praying for dry weather for the next two weeks, since we are relying on them for hay for our beasties.
We’re glad Jim is home and that we have gotten back into our very pleasant family routine.
This week time was spent in the Annex garden weeding those horrible thistles out of the squash and corn beds, and laying down mulching straw.
I mowed parts of the orchard and the paths of the Main Garden.
Horses were worked and ridden in a very controlled manner several times. Jim lightly ran our disc attachment their exercise arena, to loosen the sand.
We’ve been playing with the baby chicks and feeding them very well. They are thriving and are very strong for their young age, nearly already flying. They are hysterically funny to watch. They fight over watermelon (even though there is plenty for all) which results in much chasing and screaming at each other.
I need to get back out to the hen house to finish cleaning it, so the chicks have a safe place to go to, to grow bigger in. Currently, they are still in the house–in our living room. They will have to grow for about another six weeks before they will be big enough live in the Chicken tractor with their parents. I’ve been cleaning the Hen house in stages. A few weeks ago, I cleaned out all of the straw and manure. Last week, (I forgot to mention it), I hosed down it’s interior, the ceiling, walls, floors and nesting boxes, soaking the dried caked manure on the floor and in the nesting boxes. Once it was soaked, I was able to scrape up and remove some of the caked manure and straw.
I now need to get in there, this coming week and finish the removal of all carbon based matter and need to scrub the walls and soak the floors and nesting boxes with diluted bleach and rinse and then allow it to dry out completely, then it will be ready for chicks. It’s just not a job that I am excited about… I need to get the girls to help me then it will go much faster. 😉 Meanwhile, the Parent Chickens in the Chicken tractor are enjoying their tractor life, eating all kinds of grasses, herbs, and insects as we almost daily “drive” their tractor around the orchard in 10-foot increments.
This week, I cleaned and sterilized the incubator and am preparing it for another batch of eggs from some meat birds that I am acquiring from a friend who would like me to incubate them. If I have success, we will split the hatchlings between us to build up our meat bird flocks. If all goes well, I will be incubating several batches of eggs for our two families.
We’ve been picking boatloads of strawberries and freezing those as well as eating them. We harvested our first two Zucchinis this week. The raspberries will be ripening by the end of next week.
I peeled, blanched, and froze some store-bought carrots this week. I am not going to be freezing everything this year because of concern about a nationwide grid power failure at some point in the future. But some things such as strawberries, in my opinion, are not so nice dehydrated, and I want them for smoothies. Well, I will dehydrate a few batches, I guess, this week.
This week I have been spending a lot of time studying the Edible and Medicinal wild plants. I really feel that we need to know what is edible outside and around us, so we won’t starve, if for some reason, we lose access to our food stores. I have always dabbled in studying wild edible plants and am familiar with many but not actually eating too many of them, being somewhat of a Nervous Nelly. But I feel very strongly that it is time to learn and actually do more of it.
Jim, Miss Violet and I, went for a hike on a high mountain near us and we spent a lot of time photographing and identifying many flowers and plants.
After the hike and looking at the photos I took, I spent time reading Linda Runyon’s “Transcript and Glossary”” that accompany her Wild Food Survival Master Class DVD that we’ve owned for several years. It had been a long time since I had looked at them. The transcript gave me a taste of the wealth of information she has concerning wild edible plants, so, I asked Jim to order the full-length book that she wrote: The Essential Wild Food Survival Guide. It came very quickly in the mail. Therefore, I spent time reading it this week. It is a gem of a book. I love the way she writes. I totally understand her heart and her wonder for the great outdoors and all it has to offer.
We are literally surrounded by edible wild foods and we just need to identify them incorporate them into our diets. Many of them are even more healthy for you, have more vitamins and minerals than store-bought commercially grown vegetables… After reading up on a plant, I would dash outside to see if I had it in my garden or orchard. We do have many, many edible plants in the garden, orchard and around the ranch. Examples: Lambs Quarter, Chickweed, Shepherd’s Purse, Red Clover, Sheep Sorrel, Curly Dock, Mullein, Violets, Dandelion, Yarrow, etc. Runyon’s book, introduces 50 common edible plants. She identifies them tells which parts are edible and when in the year and includes amounts and nutritional information and uses in recipes. She preserves many of them through canning, drying, fermenting, and pickling.
I have a question for you all: If any of our readers forage and use wild plants for food on a regular basis, would you please share with us what you collect and use — and how you prepare it?
Additionally, if you were gathering plants for medicinal properties, how do you prepare it and how much quantities would you give at any one time. Maybe you all can write in what you use, how you prepare it, quantities? I am very interested in hearing more about this topic.
Keep prepping we may only have two to five months left to prepare. Keep reading the Word and repenting daily. Keep your heart right towards God and pray always.
May you all have a very blessed and safe week.
– Avalanche Lily, Rawles
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As always, please share your own successes and hard-earned wisdom in the Comments.