This weeks preps – December 7, 2019
The big thing for me was selling our rental property this week. Before you say “that’s not prepping” – I say it’s a financial prep. We’re using some of the money to pay off our home, which will save us a really big mortgage payment every month. Also, with one less rental to manage I’ll have a lot more time for other preps. I spent the past week educating myself on the local city government, networking (i.e. building clan – kith and kin), and getting ready to try some indoor winter gardening. I also put a bug in my wife’s ear about wanting an exercise bike. For me, physical conditioning is just as important as the other preps I do.
City government, building community, etc.
Our house is near a proposed development, so the city had a public hearing on the zoning change requested by the developer. If you thought that local governments work for their citizens, you’re wrong. Not a complaint, just an observation. I would highly recommend that everyone attend a local city council meeting. If you don’t live in the city, go to a county planning commission meeting or whatever your local equivalent is. If you’re a prepper, you need to be aware that your local government will not necessarily be working for your best interests. They’ll be taking care of themselves and their friends. At best, you’ll be an after thought. Be able to rely on yourself, family, and friends.
I met with a friend this week and we talked about a couple of areas I’m looking at for land. He and his wife might set up a small geodesic dome shelter if I get it, with a wind turbine for power. That should be fun to play around with. I guess now I need to get serious about looking for land…
I talked last week about wanting to grow micro greens, so I ordered a grow light from Amazon. Glad I did when I did. It was on special for $96. Two days after I ordered the price went back to $120. I also cleared a shelf in my garage for a sprouting tray, cleaned up one of my trays, and managed to find an unopened bag of potting soil. Now all I need to do is decide whether to grow sunflower or speckled peas. For the coming week, I hope to get the seeds started and maybe play around with a clay pot candle heater. What did you do to prep this week? Until next time…
This weeks preps – September 22, 2019
I got a lot of organizing done in my garage this week, and also got my reloading bench cleaned off. Now I can actually use it for a reloading bench again. I also spent more time studying for my general class amateur radio license and did some research on first aid classes I can take. The “need” for recruiting a doctor (or at the least a nurse) seems to be a recurring theme on prepper blogs. I’m not much of a recruiter so I decided I need to learn some stuff on my own.
National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) offers a 9 day Wilderness First Responder (WFR) class I want to take. Even better, they’re holding one in my home town (about a 4 hour drive). I have my wife half talked into letting me take the class. The only holdup is 2 vacant (and trashed) rental units I have to finish first. So I’ll be busy with that for the next few weeks… What did you do to prep this week?
This weeks preps – September 15, 2019
This week I went to my prepper group’s monthly meeting. We talked about wild edible plants that grow in our area. One thing that was brought up is the fact that most books on wild edibles do a poor job of explaining what areas different plants grow, You can be reading the best book ever written on the subject, but if it doesn’t talk about plants that grow in your area it doesn’t do you much good. We also talked about the lack of wild game in our area. We have rabbits and ground squirrels and not much else. I asked about a fat source (you need fat to survive) and learned that pine nuts are a great source of dietary fat if you need it. We have pinyon pines within 20 miles of my house so I’m planning on getting some this fall. Come to think of it, it’s already harvest season for pine nuts…
Besides that, I’ve been working out, organizing my stuff (especially my prepping stuff), working on my prepping plans, and studying for my general class ham radio license. What did you do to prep this week? Until next time…
I’ve been slacking in my preps lately. How about you, have you been prepping? I’ve been going to my group’s monthly meetings, but that’s about it. The August meeting was kind of FUBAR though, and the aftermath was kind of a wake-up call for me.
How to scare people away from your group:
It started out OK. We were talking about wild edible plants that grow locally. We
have had a fairly new member that I like a lot. Her politics are different than mine but I don’t care. She’s smart and had skills she was willing to share. She also asked good questions that led to more discussion on whatever we were talking about. She doesn’t didn’t attend every month, so I was really glad to see her at the August meeting.
Unfortunately, the meeting was shorter than normal so the group was just hanging out and talking. Without getting into the gory details, some of the talk devolved into conspiracy theories and then sunk even further into what I call bat shit crazy. About 10 minutes into the “conversation,” our new member got up, quietly excused herself, and left.
There were a couple takeaways for me. For groups as a whole, stay focused on the topic. For me personally, I wish I’d tried to steer the conversation back towards Realityville as soon as I saw it starting to veer towards la-la land.
Back to prepping…
We lost two members over the fiasco. One I was sorry to see go, the other one not so much. The good thing was I think it was a wake up call to stay focused on prepping. After all, it is a prepping group…
As part of the aftermath, our group leader asked everyone for their 3, 6, and 12 month prepping goals. Not as a demand. but as an aid to our preps. I agree that’s a really good idea. As someone once said, “failing to plan is planning to fail.” So that’s what I’ve been working on for the last few weeks. My short term goals are mostly organizational and planning. Medium and long term goals are mainly related to sustainability and self reliance instead of buying more stuff. Now that I’m back to it, I’ll resume my This Week’s Preps series starting Sunday.
This week I went to my second CERT meeting. This is a different group then the one I went to last week. Younger crowd, more people, and closer to work. I know which group I’ll be joining.
I got my fig trees and blackberry bushes planted. Also got an aloe vera plant for inside the house. I did notice a problem with the garlic I planted a couple weeks ago – one bed is already sprouting. Not supposed to happen until spring. Hopefully the garlic crop will still turn out OK.
I also pulled down the bean towers. My wife planted some goji in the former bean bed. I got some 2 foot rebar to replace the 3 foot sections I bought last week, so hopefully I’ll be able to finish the hoops in the coming week. Our Agribon got here yesterday so I need to get on it. Oh, and I ordered some North Pole lettuce seed.
Stanley FatMax demolition tool
I’ll have more to say on this later, but for now I’ll just say don’t waste your money. I bought the expensive version only because of the “gas shutoff wrench” that is really just the slot on the prying end. Guess what? It doesn’t fit my gas valve. What a load of crap. Otherwise it’s well built but $100 extra for a wider slot on one end is a total rip-off, especially since it doesn’t even fit a g*dd**n gas valve. If you want this tool, save $100 and get the 55-120, not the grossly over priced 55-122.
I got two new books, More Forgotten Skills of Self-Sufficiency by Caleb Warnock and The Pantry Primer: A Prepper’s Guide to Whole Food on a Half-Price Budget by Daisy Luther. I haven’t had time to read them yet but they look OK. Hope to do reviews on both really soon.
What did you do to prep this week?
I finished my CERT training and got my certificate. Also filled out the request to join the county CERT organization. Assuming I pass my background check, I’ll get fingerprinted and get my “official” CERT card from the sheriff’s office. Once I have the card I’ll join one of the local CRT teams. Other than that, not too much. We’re finishing up a rental property (new tenants moving in in a week) and starting renovations on another rental my wife bought in August. I guess that counts as prepping since I “get” to be the handyman. Never thought I’d learn things like basic plumbing and carpentry, but here I am… We also bought a compressor this week, maybe that counts as a prep too? Oh, and I got my wife to go to church with the rest of the family today.
I have a few things planned for the coming week. Finishing my garlic beds is the most important thing. Next Saturday I’m going to a work bee on winter gardening techniques. Finally, since Friday is a holiday I hope to make homemade bread with my mom.
What did you do to prep this week?
My general class amateur radio license test is in 2 weeks, so I spent most of my free time studying. I use the ARRL Study Guide and free practice exams from hamexam.org.
The soil in our backyard sucks, so we have about 9 raised beds that we use for some of our vegetables. It costs a lot of money to fill them with good bagged dirt though, so we’re getting into composting. We bought a composting bin from one of the online gardening supply companies. It came this week so I put it together and we’ve started our first batch on compost.
The biggest prep I made this week was ordering a Berkey water purification system. This was difficult because I had to talk my wife into it. Also kind of expensive (a little over $300) Actually, my kid helped with this one. His school starts next week and he’s been bugging us to buy bottled water for him to take to school. We keep forgetting, so in exasperation he asked if we could at least get a water filter since our tap water doesn’t taste that great. It was a light bulb moment for me. I said “That’s a great idea”. I told my wife I had a friend who owns a Berkey system and he raves about how good the water tastes after he filters it.
My plan was to just buy filters and a couple of 5 gallon buckets and put together my own system. My wife didn’t like that idea. She’s afraid I’ll screw something up, and she doesn’t think 5 gallon plastic buckets will look good in the kitchen. I tried to talk her into the 6 gallon system. She wanted the 3 gallon system, and we ended up compromising with the 3 gallon system (they also make a 4.5 gallon system). She also let me spend extra money to get the optional chlorine/arsenic filters. OK. So I don’t get to say I made it myself, but at least we have a water purification system coming. I can’t wait to get it set up and see if improves the taste of our tap water.
What did YOU do to prep this week?
Our garden is about half done for the year and we’re already seeing what we need to do better for next year. Our back yard soil sucks, so we ordered a composter and started putting our veggie scraps in it. We also started some more bean plants and put in a couple bean towers. Might be too late in the year but my wife wanted to try, so it’s worth a try…
I started reading through a couple of Cody Lundin books – both are very good, and I hope to start working on my survival (i.e. stay found or get found) kit very soon – just depends on how the budget goes over the next few weeks.
I also did a lot of reading on backpacks and ended up ordering a Kelty Trekker 65. This will be my bugout bag some day, in the mean time it will be my camping and backpacking bag. I started out wanting a Kifaru Mountain Warrior or something similar, but I can’t afford it right now. Besides, I’ve been reading a lot about keeping a low profile, and the Trekker is definitely lower profile than the Kifaru. John Mosby also likes Kelty packs, and that’s good enough for me.
What did YOU do to prep this week?