2018 JULY – What Did You Do To Prepare This Week/Month?

Welcome to APN! Forums Survival, Preparedness, and Sustainability Disaster Preparedness General Preparedness Discussion 2018 JULY – What Did You Do To Prepare This Week/Month?

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    Started the new thread.

    Still working on getting the sewing room in order. Everything is cleaned up, now it’s a matter of organizing some of the materials. I also plan to move my treadle inside (it’s stored in the garage right now).

    Husband is cleaning up the debris from where we had the trees elvated in the cleared area on the east side of the house. The trees are still there but the branches have now been cut off up to 20 feet. This allows the wind to pass through when things get rough, plus it allows more light on the ground so grass can grow. It also keeps weak branches from falling – especially on house, vehicles, garage or carport!

    The neighbor’s dog has decided not only her pace, but how far she’ll go on our walks. She is still enjoying walking, is as feisty and curious as ever, but she now stops about halfway, settles on the ground and waits for Husband and our dog to return to where we are. I’m glad in one way, because I don’t want to push her, but I’m not getting as much exercise. I suppose I’ll have to think of something else. πŸ™‚


    I’ve been tending the container garden and the plants are doing well. I don’t have an outside water spigot at my current place, so I ended up buying a longer water hose and sprayer (I’d left the ones I had at my old place). I already keep a hose adapter on my faucet for quick filling of water containers in an emergency, where I can just swap out the faucet water filter for a short hose when I need to fill extra containers. Before getting the new sprayer and hose, I was manually filling buckets and watering with about 15-25 gallons at a time. I didn’t mind this because it gave me a good idea of how much water I’d go through with even a modest vegetable garden.

    My flea market finds of late – 2 stocked first aid kits in soft side zippered pouches. These were from Mercedes Benz, for keeping in a car. The sterile bandages are not expired and all packed up nice. Also found pants matching the discontinued Cabelas tree bark pattern jacket I’ve had for awhile. I was at a different antique themed flea market and found volumes 1-9 of the Foxfire books, paperback in pristine condition with plastic bag sleeves, so snatched those up. I’ve also picked up two army water cans. Both need new cork gaskets, but otherwise look to be in good shape. Because I can’t guarantee their prior usage, once I’ve made new gaskets I’ll be using these for non-potable water only.

    My Lasik appointment is set for the end of the month. Getting that done will be a great relief, and for me one of the most important things I could have accomplished this summer, since it’s in the self-improvement/health category. I don’t want to be in a disaster situation and reliant on contact lenses or glasses.


    NJMike – at some point after Lasik, you’ll need reading glasses. It might take a couple years. Get a few pairs of each – 1.50., 1.75, and 2.00. Husband had Lasik 25 years ago, and now wears reading glasses as needed. Several other people we know who had the operation do, too.


    I second the reading glasses (I call them “cheaters”) in multiple strengths, since when I had mine done, although distance vision was corrected fine, they couldn’t do the “refinements” for the near vision. I only need them for reading if the light isn’t strong enough, for fine print, and for threading needles and such when I sew (and for sewing, I need a stronger lens than for reading…getting the thread through the eyes of the needles is a ….well, it’s not easy!)

    Bought a dwarf blood orange tree yesterday to add to the other citrus (lemon, lime, grapefruit, and navel orange.) Also worked on one of the inner sides for the 3-bin composter.


    Appreciate the suggestions on reading glasses. The Lasik is mainly for correcting my horrible nearsightedness. Without it, I wouldn’t be able to function having anyone over 10 feet away be a blurred face, or not being able to discern an animal from a person 100 feet away in the brush. The eye surgeon will be giving me blended vision correction, better to read with the non-dominant eye being corrected to a bit less than 20/20. He did indicate I could need readers after several years, but the blended vision puts that off further than if both eyes were corrected to 20/20.

    While out at lunch, I picked up a used book – Drug Guide for Nurses. It’s not the most current edition, but for 53 cents it’s good to have in the backups.


    I didn’t have Lasik, Husband did. However, I had better than normal vision until I hit my 40s…it went to normal. Doctors laughed when I asked for glasses. That said, I now have a very mild prescription, that I can only use to read the computer screen. The rest of the time, I use “cheaters” in various strengths.

    Threading a needle requires 1.75 strength glasses now. πŸ™‚

    Reading on my tablet requires 2.00 strength.

    I also keep a pair of 1.75 strength in my purse. Husband, my neighbor, and my Dad can all share the same cheaters – we pass them around to read menus and fine print when we’re all together!

    Currently working on a small table runner/wall hanging for myself. Not sure what I want it to be yet.

    No preps today other than keeping the deck garden watered. Still not sure the squash will make it.


    Well for starters this is my first post in the new forum design. Struggling some with it but this is a familiar thread I have enjoyed in the past.

    I have continued gathering food but am behind on inventorying. We recently became empty nesters so I have reclaimed a bedroom closet to store my prep buckets.

    I have added some medical preps from a new resource. Stuff I never thought of. Only folks with advanced wound mgmt would know about.

    Started back on a comm plan for a group then decided first order of business was identifying the repeaters we all need to have configured. We are spread out across the DFW complex so it was difficult to figure out which ones people were monitoring if any. Then did the same for the counties folks have BOLs. This really addressed everyday comms. Next will be urgent/emergent comm plans and alternate freq for simplex comms off repeaters. Then will be SHTF comms which is a ton more complicated.

    Implementing will be a challenge since the group’s comm skills are none to intermediate. I am hoping to get a comm field day practice setup sort of like the recent ARRL national event. Most folks don’t know how to configure their radios. We need practice.

    Definitely stepped out of my comfort zone but saw a gap to be filled.


    Got a bunch of “pinwheels” to put throughout the garden…hoping the vibrations as they spin will drive out the subterranean varmint that’s already taken out my zucchini plants and is moving on toward other plants. Hopefully it makes him/it leave.

    Since I had Chore Monkey available today, had him help me with the 3-bin composter. Had him lift the top back beam up so that I could get it on top of the one upright and get it nailed into place, then pull in the end upright so that I could nail the back beam into place with it. After that, had him hold the lower back beam while I screwed it into the 4 back uprights, then had him take the u-shaped fencing nails and nail the top of the back wire onto the lower back beam. (I’ve been wanting to get this done for WEEKS, but needed a second person to help.)

    Since it was “old farts discount day” at the grocery store, went and cleaned them out of turmeric tea (I drink a cup every morning, to help with the arthritis in my hands); cherries and grapes were on special (.99/lb on the grapes, 1.99/lb on the cherries). Also got 18 bottles of wine (on sale, of course) for the “Viking” wedding next month.

    Other than that, worked on a new 1880’s-era skirt for the new outfit I’m making for an event in Tombstone in August. I’m down to stitching on the waistband, then stitching the “poufs” for the back, then hemming. After that, I can start on the new bodice and overskirt.


    Got the remainder of the concrete piers for the chicken coop dug in EXCEPT for the one that has a mesquite stump right in the middle of where the concrete pier needs to go. Dug all around it, and will try to take it out with a chainsaw.

    Got a new peach tree to replace the one that died, pulled the dead tree, and planted the new one.

    Got the waistband on the skirt I’m working on, the “poufs” in the back, and am currently working on the hem.


    When you mention chicken and mesquite in the same sentence, I was expecting a smoked chicken recipe. Don’t let that stump go to waste. πŸ™‚


    Today was grocery shopping and yard sales day.

    No yard sales were advertised – too hot outside, I guess, plus the late 4th of July weekend.


    Restocked what we used

    Canned ham
    Vegetable oil
    Dog Food

    First Aid kit:
    PeptoBismol tablets

    New trailer hitch for the new truck

    I ordered an adjustable, large-strap, waterproof cross-body bag (because it was cheaper than I could make it). I am very happy with it – lots of zippered pockets, small enough I don’t look as if I’m lugging a suitcase and it fits everything I need conveniently. It even fits my purse organizer, in which I carry things I don’t want people to see when I open my purse. I like it so much I am ordering a smaller bag from the same company for when I just do quick trips. Here’s a link if the ladies are interested:


    Actually, the darker ones could pass for an EDC bag or a man bag, too. If any of our guys carry a man-bag…:)

    Also ordered some Betadine Ointment – they’re finally making it again! I’ve been making my own with petroleum jelly and calendula, but I’m not sure I ever got the ratios right, although the stuff seemed good enough.

    I mentioned in previous posts that I went through the first aid kit and got rid of some of the older meds (especially liquids) and we are now restocking a few things each grocery trip.



    When you mention chicken and mesquite in the same sentence, I was expecting a smoked chicken recipe. Don’t let that stump go to waste.

    Oh, don’t worry about it, Mike…I’ve got 19 acres of the stuff, and several piles of it from when we cleared areas for the house, septic field, corral, and goat/cow pen already “aged.” Have PLENTY more that still needs to be cut…eventually I plan to build a smokehouse. Guess what I’ll be using in it?

    Took the chainsaw to that mesquite stump, and got it out of the way, then set the FINAL concrete deck pier and started putting on the 2×6 support joists for the base of the new chicken coops. Ran out of 3 1/2# screws, (had been using them on the composter project) so made a run to get the screws as well as the plywood for the coop floors, and the 2x4s for framing the coop walls. The coop project is now in full swing!

    Lowe’s had a propane tank exchange deal going on…$14.97 per tank. With military discount, I paid $13.47 per tank, and exchanged 5 tanks that were too old to be re-filled (the previous occupants of our property had been running the water heater off of them instead of re-filling the big tank, and left them when they vacated the property.) That now gives us 8 GOOD propane tanks.

    Apparently, the lady who’s granddaughters I’m teaching to sew has been telling people about me teaching them, (and that I’m a good teacher) and has 3 potential students for me! I just need to come up with a price per person per class. Any suggestions?


    I just finished preparing corn for the freezer. Today was my last batch, I have 71 containers of corn and I’m done for this year. Hubs helped shuck and I prepped, took a couple of hitches to get it done. Have up 23 pints of relish, a lot of work but we use a lot of it. I’m thinking of putting up at least 7 more. I put it in potato and macaroni salad, also in deviled eggs. And I like to just eat it on hamburgers and hot dogs. I’m pretty sure that isn’t enough. Ran out of plastic containers for fruits. Strawberries here were no good this year. My peaches are doing nothing and hubs said the market told him theirs were no good and they are having to buy them. I saw 25 pounds for $40, man fruits are expensive. Well all fresh fruits and veggies are. It has been so hot my tomatoes are loaded with blooms but not much setting on, we have a few cool days so here is hoping. Green beans are loaded with blooms should be setting on soon. Want to can lots of goodies.

    If these tariffs are let run everything is going to go up in price, going to eat us alive. I’m going to put up everything I can this year. Hog farmers are worrying, they said if they can’t sell them to china for a time pork will be cheap then some farmers will lose it all while others will pull back. Then, of course, we will have shortages of pork which will drive prices up again. Again I hope these tariffs do not stay in place.
    We are showing a rent house tomorrow and when done I’m checking on an industrial sewing machine. They want $250 and I think its a fair price of course its not new and probably quite old. New ones are very expensive.
    I can upholster, make drapes, and bedspreads but had no machine that is really heavy enough. Just making a few items will pay for it.


    Started setting in the floor joists for the chicken coops this morning, and was hoping to get them finished and get the flooring on….NOPE! about 9 am, son came out to have me take a look at a wound on daughter’s dog’s shoulder…butthead had apparently gotten it caught under the fence(she was trying to dig under it) and ripped a 2 1/2 to3 inch 3-corner tear. So, emergency run to the vet that ate up the rest of the morning, and a good part of the afternoon.

    Finally got back out to get another 2 joists in place and screwed in, and the rest of them cut to size when the rain started. A little rain I can handle, but when the lightning started, I packed it in. Power tools plus lightning–NOT a good combination.


    Husband spent the last two days pulling out stumps. We’d cut the trees some years ago, so the stumps were ready to go. The land is flat there now. This was in preparation. He finally, after 12 years, bought a new lawn tractor.

    I spent the morning playing/sewing with some terrycloth. Here’s the deal. I have really sensitive gums…great teeth, strong, healthy, etc. But my gums have become so sensitive that even the soft-bristle brushes make them turn bright red for hours (no bleeding). The dentist has looked at them extensively and says there is no sign of gum disease, just thin skin there. I’m also now allergic to mint toothpastes, mouthwash, and gum. I switched to cinnamon toothpaste/mouthwash and it’s helping some. But it’s painful to brush and I needed an alternative.

    So I made a toothbrush cover out of terrycloth. A little sack that fits right over the toothbrush. I brushed my teeth with it and it worked great! My gums weren’t agitated, my teeth feel super clean, and it all worked. So, I plan to make many more, buy or make a mesh bag to throw them in the wash after use, and go from there. We’ll see how it goes.

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