What are you preparing for?

Emerald

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rhoda_bruce said:
I totally understand. Feel the same. About a year ago, I determined that we really didn't need a tv room, but we did need a pantry room....not a pantry cupboard. So out went the tv, along with all its attachments and in came a bunch of metal shelving units, my grandmother's old table, all my wine making and canning supplies and I began buying in bulk.
Okay, now it costed a lot to buy all that food, but what I wanted to do was slowly fill all the masons until I no longer had room for the store bought stuff and when I was out of it, it would be Okay because they would have been replaced with our own home canned food.
Then my grandparents both died and not only did I have my 26 years worth of masons, but I inherited all of her's, which easily doubled my jars. You can bet I began filling them.
Sometimes I work my tail off and putting food up takes me a good while. There are those who might wander why I bother. I sometimes ask myself that too, esp when the amount of time, work and fatigue, don't seem to cancel out the $ value. But those jars take up just as much room, weather they are filled or empty, so they might as well have food in them. My freezer is full, but if the power is shut off, I have only so long before I have to eat all of its contents, can it or run by generator....but again, how long will I use the generator??? IDK.
Slaughtering.......I've have seen people get chickens straight run, plan on killing their extra roos and not. Makes no sense to me. There goes all your profits. All your hens are being over harassed. The roos are getting mean and your coop isn't a safe place to just walk into. I refuse to have set all this up and not turn a profit. I need 1 roo in each of my projects.....thats it. I need one gander with my goose. I need one drake with my 6 ducks....no more. I do need meat on my table sometimes. It only makes sense that I slaughter my unwanted male birds and eat them. I know I'm eating healthy animals. I know they were killed as kindly as possible and properly bled. I know no one washed them down in bleach. I know they weren't pumped full of antibiotics or steroids. Its not my favorite chore, but once I tend to the chore, I can sit back and watch, while my females get first pick on the grain, which somehow lasts much longer and you can bet my grocery bill will be decreased too.
I have 5 children of my own and I somehow have extra children on the place at all times, which just seem to want to watch my every move. They all know something about where our food comes from. My children must help me with the chores. They are learning how to take care of themselves. You never know....they might have to take care of themselves one day. For all I know, maybe I'll have to take care of myself. Have to, not choose to. I'm glad to come from people who had these skills.
I bought a small plug in thingy that you can put in your car and use it to plug in your freezer(dc to ac adapter) silly me I got one too small for my freezer so had to buy a big one. (the small one runs my laptop tho and I can charge my kindle with it if needed) it direct ties to the battery in my durango and it will run the freezer. I don't plan on keeping my food frozen for ever in case of "the big one" but just long enuf for me to get all the foods in there either canned or eaten or even sent thru the dehydrator which will also run on it. The dehydrator is not the best thing to use during power outage but I do wanna make a solar one..
 

Denim Deb

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Sounds like that would be an inverter. If you can get an spare battery for in your vehicle, you can have it rigged so it charges when your vehicle is running, then plug in when you need it. That way, it doesn't drain your car battery if you leave it plugged in for too long. Hubby was supposed to do that for my truck so I use my electric chainsaw in the woods, then got a small generator instead. I'm kind of glad now that we have the generator. I can get more places than I could w/the inverter.
 

Emerald

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Denim Deb said:
Sounds like that would be an inverter. If you can get an spare battery for in your vehicle, you can have it rigged so it charges when your vehicle is running, then plug in when you need it. That way, it doesn't drain your car battery if you leave it plugged in for too long. Hubby was supposed to do that for my truck so I use my electric chainsaw in the woods, then got a small generator instead. I'm kind of glad now that we have the generator. I can get more places than I could w/the inverter.
Thanks!! I was having a senior moment last night and just could not remember what it was called. and the extra battery is a great idea. I want a small battery run motor for my canoe(with this bad back I can't paddle all day any more)(trolling motor I mean) and maybe I can just buy that battery and we would have it for extra!
 

rhoda_bruce

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Ya know, food in a freezer stays frozen a good while and even when its thawing, its still plenty cold enough to keep a couple of weeks, while you are putting them up. My grandmother saved almost all her food after Betsy. She claimed she lost some shrimp and squash, but canned everything else. There is no way I would have lost that shrimp. I'd have eaten nothing but shrimp for a while, if I had to, but I'm not one who would have liked to throw away shrimp.
And this was before the average Cajun home had generators....back in 1965. They went 3 weeks without power or water.
The only reason my freezer is so full is because I"m decreasing expenses in the yard.....doing away with unneeded male birds. Its getting too undependable to obtain grain, so writting was on the wall. Also, neighbor is trigger happy and killed his limit on duck and prairie hen, but only wanted the breasts of the hens. Gave me 5 ducks, whole. I have about 7 meals ahead with what he didn't see about. So I won't be needed so much meat in the weeks to come. The freezer will start to empty very soon. If the big one comes, I don't mind canning, but my guess is that I will have my work cut out to do all my chores, so I don't wanna be spending all my time saving frozen food. Still....if I have alternative energy, just so I can bail out the freezer, say in a month, then I can go on living 'old' from there on. One can run a generator for about 4 hours, while running the freezer/fridge and then it should stay frozen. No need to use all your fuel, which you might need for something else. The trick is not to open a freezer if you don't need to and to keep all your quilts covering it.
To tell you the truth, I'm seriously thinking my next fridge and freezer will be run by gas, with connections to convert to propane, in a pinch. I almost wouldn't need a generator if I had that.....well, except that it get super hot here, but we've survived in the past.
 

Emerald

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During power outages now my neighbor across the street is my cousin and he is a private contractor and has a genny on wheels and will bring it over every other day and run it for about two hours to cool the fridge and big chest freezer down for us. We don't worry in the winter we can just pack it all into the back of one of the SUVs. But it gets hot here too in the summer(not as hot as Cajun country I'm sure! ;) ) I drape all of our big winter quilts over the freezer in power outages in the summer. Also as I empty it I will fill clean soda 2liters and add them in there as a full freezer doesn't work as hard to keep stuff cold. And the frozen 2liters go in the coolers and work great for getting groceries home or for quick jaunts to the beach!
 

rhoda_bruce

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Well, then you got a good situation going. I also live in very close proximity to family and the neighbor that is closest to us, may as well be family because thats how they treat us. Then my other neighbor got married to his long time girlfriend.......guess what. She is fairly closely related to my mother. Go figure. My point is, that in an emergency situation or even if TSHTF, your neighbors and you have to stick together and work thru your problems. You won't be able to fix all your problems with a phone call or by ordering something. I thinks its best that those of us who want to be prepared for whatever nature, the government or whatever hands us, starts bending over to help our neighbors.....at the very least, offer certain kindnesses that won't hurt you to offer and engage in happy conversations.
 

Emerald

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rhoda_bruce said:
Well, then you got a good situation going. I also live in very close proximity to family and the neighbor that is closest to us, may as well be family because thats how they treat us. Then my other neighbor got married to his long time girlfriend.......guess what. She is fairly closely related to my mother. Go figure. My point is, that in an emergency situation or even if TSHTF, your neighbors and you have to stick together and work thru your problems. You won't be able to fix all your problems with a phone call or by ordering something. I thinks its best that those of us who want to be prepared for whatever nature, the government or whatever hands us, starts bending over to help our neighbors.....at the very least, offer certain kindnesses that won't hurt you to offer and engage in happy conversations.
You sure said it there! I am the town weirdo haha.. I grow quite a bit of my own veggies each year(well but this one that is..knee surgery so I scaled back by about 75%) but since I grow only(or as close to it as I can) heirlooms and open pollinated veggies the seed that I have and keep growing out to keep it fresh will put me in good standing for trading.. and the fact that cousin is a very good contractor and has helped out before with small repairs on my house for just eggs or house sitting while they are on vacation really helps.
I have a feeling that while the whole world may not go completely to Heck in a hand basket- things may get really hairy for a bit.. small small 4 way town may be safer as I have grown up here and moved back here and we are surrounded by farmers. Pig/cow/dairy/emu/ostrich and last but not least.. Alpaca.. I have chickens. And for some reason a huge amount of wild bunnies seem to love me.. could be the wild black raspberrys that are taking over part of the yard.. lol
 

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rhoda_bruce said:
Ya know, food in a freezer stays frozen a good while and even when its thawing, its still plenty cold enough to keep a couple of weeks, while you are putting them up. My grandmother saved almost all her food after Betsy. She claimed she lost some shrimp and squash, but canned everything else. There is no way I would have lost that shrimp. I'd have eaten nothing but shrimp for a while, if I had to, but I'm not one who would have liked to throw away shrimp.
And this was before the average Cajun home had generators....back in 1965. They went 3 weeks without power or water.
The only reason my freezer is so full is because I"m decreasing expenses in the yard.....doing away with unneeded male birds. Its getting too undependable to obtain grain, so writting was on the wall. Also, neighbor is trigger happy and killed his limit on duck and prairie hen, but only wanted the breasts of the hens. Gave me 5 ducks, whole. I have about 7 meals ahead with what he didn't see about. So I won't be needed so much meat in the weeks to come. The freezer will start to empty very soon. If the big one comes, I don't mind canning, but my guess is that I will have my work cut out to do all my chores, so I don't wanna be spending all my time saving frozen food. Still....if I have alternative energy, just so I can bail out the freezer, say in a month, then I can go on living 'old' from there on. One can run a generator for about 4 hours, while running the freezer/fridge and then it should stay frozen. No need to use all your fuel, which you might need for something else. The trick is not to open a freezer if you don't need to and to keep all your quilts covering it.
To tell you the truth, I'm seriously thinking my next fridge and freezer will be run by gas, with connections to convert to propane, in a pinch. I almost wouldn't need a generator if I had that.....well, except that it get super hot here, but we've survived in the past.
Have you ever explored the idea of a "wood burning refrigerator?" There actually IS such a thing. The principle is based on heating ammonia gas in a confined space...it causes it to cool which then is circulated through a coil and refrigerates your food.
Just as an aside, as long as you still have ice crystals in the food, most of it CAN be re-frozen. Like you said, eat a lot of shrimp that week...
You can also protect things in a freezer by insulating it. Buy some 2" styrofoam insulation and build it around your freezer. If you seal the freezer with good tape and put that insulation around it, you can extend it's active life (in the power loss situation) for quite some time as well as reduce your power bill when you have the power.
Your generator does NOT need to run constantly to save your frozen stuff. You need to find the circuit that allows the generator to power the freezer for one cycle and then turn the generator off...which saves fuel and keeps your food safe, longer.
Just some thoughts to help each other.
 

Icu4dzs

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When one reviews the title of this thread, one is forced to answer a very difficult question. I have been thinking about this before I answered it because it demands great thought.
I have decided that "What I am preparing for" is my waning years when I can no longer work and my health is weaker. I believe that my garden will provide not only sustenance, but solace where I can contemplate the years I have spent on this earth and prepare my mind and body to make the transition from this life to the next.
I will admit I have grown up during the "atomic age" when the threat of nuclear destruction of not only my home but that of my country and my planet are to be considered. I have never had one day without that fear/dread/concern. As a child, we drilled by hiding under the desk in the classroom to avoid falling debris in the event of a nuclear explosion. We would be marched into the cellar of the school and lean against the wall or each other with our hands covering our necks to avoid injury. I particularly remember liking to lean against one of the girls in my class named Kathy. We sat in the room in a specific order so when we were marched to the cellar, she was always the one against the wall and I had to lean against her. Another girl had to lean against me so as to make the grouping 3 deep. There were days when I couldn't decide who was more fun...the leaner or the leanee!
The truth of the matter is that despite the concern for nuclear destruction (which at the age of 10 I could NOT truly understand) I have more deeply feared the return of the "great depression". My theory is and will be that "it happened once and it will probably happen again". Having a place to live now makes that fear somewhat less. Having chickens who make eggs, having a milk cow, having beef cattle and having a garden are all forms of insurance that can NOT be "devalued" by Wall Street in the event of another of their criminal behaviors. My farm can not be worth less to ME than what it can do to help me eat and be sheltered every day for the rest of my natural life.
So to answer the question, "I am preparing for old age or another depression, whichever comes first" and my deepest, darkest impression is that both will come but I am not certain as to what order they will come.
YMMV
Saepe Expertus, Semper Fidelis, Fratres Aeterni
Trim sends
//BT//
 

rhoda_bruce

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I had heard about woodburning generators, but never refrigerators, but if you can do one, should be able to do another. It would be great if I could have a woodburning generator, cuz we have some really wild storms sometimes and lots of trees come down. I never have to cut a tree down for my potbelly, unless its in the way of something. I'll check into woodburning refrigeration. My current fridge is 18 years old, so not sure how long it has.
Icu....I can relate; except for the cellar thing.....we don't have that. I've lined up close to my classmates for drills and under desks.
I have for a long time, been getting ready for a major depression....worse than the last, cuz we don't know anything now, so people gonna fall on all fours. And like Icu...I won't enter it in my prime. My feet are currently killing, me. But if my body isn't ready for the work, at least my brain knows a lot of these valueable skills. Still, there is always room to learn more.
 
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