April 2020 Check-In

Home Forums Prep Every Day Check-In Threads April 2020 Check-In

This topic contains 62 replies, has 11 voices, and was last updated by  Osito Arelano 8 months, 3 weeks ago.

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  • #27192

    Crow Bar

    Here we are in April!

    Actually feels like spring out there, finally.

    Heard a “peeper,” yesterday aka tiny frog that lets out a “peep!”

    One of our projects for this year was to replace the toilet and vaniety/bathroom sink. That is what I get to do today, yay.
    This weekend we will move compost to the garden beds.

    I hope everyone is staying safe and busy!

  • #27198


    Sunshine state is going into lockdown midnight tonight. Made some last minute trips to the Walmart and Box store to get spices and solar stake lights for the back.

    Planted tomato, pepper and eggplant in containers yesterday.

    Thanks for the tip Namelus, as we have plenty of sunshine. Ended up getting regular AAs in the meantime. With the Pandemic, budget isnt allowing for a full solar system. I have enough to get me through hurricane season which is right around the corner. Not sure where batteries are manufactured, but at the first hint of a storm they will be not found anywhere.

  • #27201

    Mama cando

    Well, schools out for the year here. DH and I are doing alright for now. He and his walking buddies set up a Skype/Zoom thing this afternoon and played “keeno” with dollar bills LOL.He won $20 LOL.  The guys are getting antsy, they can’t walk or hang out having coffee, getting out of our(the wives) hair for a couple of hours HA HA HA.  Told DH he and the guys should do what I saw on FB, go to a parking lot and sit in the back end of their vehicles, 6 feet apart with their coffee LOL. DH did get to go walking today in our little park for about an hour. Said it was nice, only saw one other couple walking. Not sure if we will be able to take the cat in next week, we’ll be calling to make sure it’s still okay.    Seriously, we’re doing fine,  the guys are okay and so are the wives. Many honey do lists are getting knocked off though. Son2 and family are doing alright so far but I’m still worried about them. Son1 and family are doing good as well. They have good weather so they’ve been doing a lot of walking around the neighborhood.  Praying the psycho ex is staying healthy, she works for the VA and as far as I know has still been working in the office not at home.The older two grands are on the way back to her for the week end and will be back to dad’s Monday maybe,haven’t heard if TN has closed schools for the rest of the year.  DH and I will be tackling some projects in the house in the next couple of weeks. Trying to stretch out the things to keep busy. Today was the first day there was any sun and warmer weather. So DH cleaned the boxes but he needs some good dirt to replace what we’ve pulled out of them. We may chance it and go out tomorrow and see if we can get the things for the garden and the room project. Seeds are on the way but not sure when they’ll be here. Heard post office may be shortening hours or actually stopping delivery due to the virus. I hope not, am expecting some things for the house. Got one package this am, DH wiped it down and let it sit.

    I hope you are all okay and are staying safe and keeping busy.

  • #27205

    Crow Bar

    Corsaire, Mama CanDo,
    good to hear you are staying busy and the families are doing ok.

    I installed the toilet yesterday! No water everywhere! No leaks!
    Actually getting the old one out was the biggest pain.

    Later we had a good friend up, with her dog. They closed “doggie daycare,” so she brought up her dog to play/socialize with our dogs.
    They closed the local park! Didnt make any sense to me, as she said everyone was staying over the recommended distance by 20 or 30 yards. That is where she would go to walk her dog.
    Malls, restaurants, movie theaters, I get that.

  • #27233


    Some vendors if you need gloves or masks

    gloves, try uline. They have all sorts of grades; eg industrial, medical ect

    For masks, try Etsy. Tons of vendors, so you’ll have to do some sifting.

    I got masks, cause this aint going away anytime soon.

    Also secured paper towels and tp for family though Amazon.You pretty much have to have the tab open 24/7.

    Now a question.Vacuum sealers.Are they a good investment?.I have been on the fence, cause of food rotation ect.


  • #27242


    We have industrial one for the abotoire for packaging products it is way better than butcher paper, can leave steaks for a year no freezer burn. You have to use the thick material.


    We had a home version food saver that was heavy duty  from Costco. .. worked for a bit then died after 6 months  the bags for the product are easily punctured after sealing is done leaving leaks to spoil your items. I would not buy oNE again.


    That being said our industrial one cost 20k but can count weigh label and separate different  amounts …. the plastic feed is 36 inches wide and the rolls weigh 35lb each. It does work of 4 people easy. It allows one person to make 3000 kg of sausage in one day and have it packed and sorted .. in 8 hours.

  • #27317


    Checking in….hi all….I am fine and trying hard to stay positive which is my usual approach to life; however, this “virus” thing has me struggling with anger, frustration, and other unkind feelings. Fortunately, because I joined this group over a year ago and had been steadily preparing for whatever, I wasn’t caught having to do panic shopping….thank you Daisy for keeping this web site going! And, as I’ve checked all my stuff I was happy that many months ago ya’ll helped me identify the types of masks I might need and there they were to share with my family who have none. Apparently, wearing masks is now being encouraged.

    CABIN FEVER is my major complaint. At 81 and with some serious underlying health issues I’ve tried to limit going anywhere much for weeks. My granddaughters who live about 20 minutes away have come to visit several times and brought me a few things I wanted – fresh milk for example. But, now our governor has said stay at home except for essential travel and I want to comply, but I’m not being especially gracious about this whole thing.

    Love Daisy’s current article about how to cope with the quarantine aspect of what’s going on. What’s so strange to me is how angry I feel. I can only imagine how others not so well positioned as I am might be getting angrier and angrier. Makes me wonder when all that pent-up emotion might explode in some of the large urban areas. Well, I’m living to see some mighty interesting times. Still working hard though to demonstrate positive approach to tough times for my granddaughters.

    Oh, yes, Son #3 owns three fitness centers which have been closed down. A dozen or more employees he’s got to worry about, along with lost revenues to pay mortgages, loans on facility equipment, utilities which haven’t been cut off, etc….those of you who are small business people know the pain our small businesses are going through. Some won’t be able to come back….such a shame.

    Sorry, I’m reporting in such a downer way but I’m isolated and just needed to rant a bit….but I’m also tough and know this too shall pass!!! God bless us all and God bless America.

  • #27330

    Crow Bar

    @muffy, good to hear you are hanging in there!
    And no worries about being a “downer.”
    You are not!
    This is just what we are all going through.
    And I think it is interesting to read/hear how and what people are doing.

  • #27336

    Mama cando

    Hey Muffy Good to hear you’re doing okay. Feel free to rant away. Glad your grand daughter is able to do some things for you.Even if she has to “dump and run” LOL. We’re still doing fine. Got an Email from the courts this AM, seems since we’re still on lock down  I don’t have to call tomorrow. Courts will be closed till May 4th so I have fulfilled my civic duty per the email. Talked to my sister in VA, she’s now an office of one. Her job is 95% have to be in the office,so boss has everybody else working remotely. She works in heating and cooling company and is the supply manager. She says she’s taking big precautions when the supplies come in but it’s REALLY REALLY quiet in the office HA HA HA.Boss has the phones forwarded to a couple of the other people working from home so Sis doesn’t have to deal with that.Lots of emailing and texting though. Her Grandson(she’s raising) is off school till next year ,so he’s been “home” schooling.He’s not happy but he’s old enough to understand he can’t go out and play with his friends. Other sis is still working from home, she lives with her son and grand son she’s doing alright. Her Daughter and family are doing good but haven’t heard if she and hubs are working from home. Governor here has “suggested” places like Lowe’s shut down because it’s felt they aren’t essential. Not sure if they will comply but we’ll see. Next few days are going to be rainy and cold so DH is bummed he can’t get out in the garden to get things going. If they are shutting places like Lowe’s down, then the projects will be put on hold till we can get the things for them.  Looks like most of Michigan are doing a good job staying in as it looks like our numbers are going down but the next couple of weeks will be critical. My nephew in TX  posted his hospital won’t let people donate home made masks as they “can’t ” be sure the home made ones are sterile. He says they are using paper masks that the hospital is “sanitizing” and re using.His hubby is working from home and is having a blast, he can catch up on some of his crocheting projects and play with the dogs. Although those two will be even more spoiled by the time this is over,  LOL.Other family are still okay, SIL posted a pix of my brother snoozing in his recliner, tagged it “Dad’s social distancing” while the rest of them were playing pool, they still have kids at home. Did go over to Son2’s to drop off some supplies for them, got to see my grands thru the window. They and the grand dog were glad to see Gaga and Grandpa even if we couldn’t hug them. Son1 and family are doing okay as well, weather down there is warm and sunny so the kids got the idea to go around and put positive messages on the driveways of their neighbors. DIL1 told us the 2 older ones don’t have to go back til the 16th so they’ll get to spend Easter with Dad.I hope you all are staying safe and pray this will be over soon. God bless

  • #27340


    Lowes not essential?? The one near me is hiring. Box stores are open.

    Thanks for the feeback Namelus. I did research on food preservation and it wasnt recommended. For the price of a decent one ( vacuum sealer) you can get a canning set-

    Its only April, but hurricane season is on everyones mind.

    Agreed, Muffy you arent being a downer.Thanks for posting

    MamaCando “Dads social distancing” thats great.

  • #27352

    grannyj smith

    I finally found one gallon of bleach and spray cleaner with bleach at the dollar store and am glad for I was running low on bleach and cleaner.

    Our meat market states they don’t know how long they will have fresh meat so they are limiting how much one person can purchase, few eggs in the stores, empty shelves of toilet paper, paper towels and just about everything else is gone from the shelves.  Will it eventually come to rationing in order for people to get some of the things needed or will supplies finally catch with demand, these are a few questions our local leaders are avoiding in answering.

    I checked my Easter box in the closet and found baskets, plastic eggs, decorations for Easter, just have to add a bit of candy and some other things from the dollar store and the kids will have a happy Easter.   I  have a ham in the freezer and some fresh potatoes so it’s going to be ham, potato salad and little coconut cakes and it will be a most thankful and blessed Easter for us.  I take joy and am so thankful for every little thing I have that I once took for granted.  I wish you’ll a most blessed and Happy Easter.


  • #27391

    Mama cando

    Corsaire, that was only a Suggestion but who knows around here.  granny j glad you found the stuff and should have a good Easter. Because of Son2 , we aren’t having Easter this year so most of the stuff is still packed away here.I’ve put up a few Easter things to keep us “normal”but it’s going to be a lonely Easter this year.

    .Talked to Son2 a few minutes ago, he’s had to send one person home (was coughing) and one of his oldies(meat cutter) has come back and working a couple of hours before closing. Cutting and wrapping the meat for the next day.They no longer will cut up something from the cases if you need it sliced ,etc. but will get something from the back, if they have it, slice it up and wrap it before bringing it out to you. Company he works for has sent out to the stores, any employee(EE) who contracts or any immediate member of EE’s household contracts the virus, they are to stay home and the company will pay them their regular hours. Which has eased a lot of peoples minds. They are taking temps before the workers can come into the store for their shifts. Since he is in the meat department, cleaning has always gone on regularly but he has been extra vigilant with his department. He keeps getting compliments on how well everything is going in his department.Told his boss(store Mgr) My Mamma taught me good LOL. He did say it’s slowing down now that the crazies aren’t grabbing everything in sight. So maybe tomorrow when I head out I’ll be able to pick up a couple of things I’ve needed and couldn’t get like washing soda.Had to order washing soda from Amazon and they canceled the shipment yesterday. Hopefully they’ll return the money to me, I used a gift card. I got one thing (of 3 ordered) yesterday. Our thermometer broke and I’ve been using the pocket one I got couple months ago at the woman’s show but I’m not sure how long that will last us.Can’t get any thermometers here, all the stores are out including the fancy dancy expensive ones.I keep calling and checking but so far nary a one.So I ordered one from Amazon.Hopefully THAT order will still ship. DH said we could always use the led meat thermometer if push comes to shove LOL.Legislature will probably give Gov. the extension she’s asked for but only for 30 days instead of the 70 she’s asked for. So we maybe on stay at home thru May now. Will have to see if I can get my money back on the non refundable plane ticket(HA HA) or see if I can reschedule going to see the kids to later this year.Nothing else to report so far.

    We are still alive and kicking Stay safe and God bless.

  • #27411

    Crow Bar

    Talked to my daughter yesterday.
    They cut her hours and she will get laid off in June.
    Bummer too as she was at a point she was putting one third of her pay check into savings.
    Naturally she is stressed. Tried to re-assure her we will help her.

    This is her generations big crisis.

  • #27417

    grannyj smith

    Today I am roasting the last turkey from the freezer left from the extra ones I purchased on sale at Christmas and I have some fresh sweet potatoes, so it gong to be turkey sandwiches and sweet potato pie.  Family is beginning to complain about the food being served, but if you can’t get out to the store or the store doesn’t have what you need what is a person suppose to do.


    • #27445

      Crow Bar

      @granny J Smith,
      Well, when I was a kid and complained about what was being served for dinner, my mom would give me “That” look, and tell me if I didnt like it, I could make dinner myself, or go hungry.

    • #28163


      LOL right?  For me, it was my grandmother – she home cooked everything and lived through the depression and WW2, so she was astounded that when her grandchildren would come to visit, we’d have the temerity to turn up our nose at certain foods.  We got “the lecture”, but when I got older and reflected on it, I understood much better.

      Even more so, now!

  • #27431

    Cinnamon Grammy

    Greetings, All

    Everything is fine with us here in the country. Doing our normal stuff in our normal way, except for wearing gloves at the store if we need to shop. There is definitely an advantage to being retired, living in the country, and being preppers.

    I speak to my grandsons, one every few days, just to check in with them so they don’t get too bored. The family is a very close-knot one and they are getting along fine. At 19, 17, and 14 they seem to do more cooperating now. The 19-yr old is doing his college classes online just fine. The other two just started this week and I don’t know how it is with them yet. While they have access to home computers and internet, they do not have the “Chrome books” that many schools, do, and their school is not set-up for distance learning. There are some sleep issues. As in – day is night and sleeping until 2 PM. But, with both parents working at home, the schedule is a bit lax. That is changing this week with schools starting.

    Dear Daughter is more busy than ever. Since she has her family counseling position, she is talking to even more clients than before. She deals with many teenagers who have been arrested for a variety of reasons, and are required to have a number of counseling sessions; and they, many times, come from dysfunctional homes to begin with. There are stresses in those families that, fortunately, we do not have nor will understand. Add to that the requirement to stay at home in this environment, with an abusive parent, etc., she may need a counselor herself. I am very proud of her.

    We bought a new set of shelving. The older smaller one is becoming a plant shelf for seed starting. I just finished putting the food items on the new and deeper shelves. I still need more shelves for our food and preps. But, they are a bit expensive so this one will have to do for a while since we still need to purchase grow lights for the plant shelf.

    I put some seeds in a wet paper towel to give them a head start while we moved the shelf and I filled the trays with soil. When I finally put them in the soil, the seeds only took a day to sprout. The bad thing is the two grow lamps I used before, are round spotlight types and not large enough for the shelving, and they just died. I did not want to go out of the house so soon, but if I am going to depend on these seeds, they need more light that one little window they are in front of can give. I need more soil for more seeds, too.

    That said, my lettuce seeds are doing great in the west window with one grow lamp. They are getting their second leaves. Not ready to eat for a while, but I may be able to actually have some lettuce soon. I am hoping they do well and I can have lettuce and a patio tomato inside for Fall and Winter.

    I also put some sweet potatoes into water to try for some slips for planting, but I think I should have done that four months ago.

    It is like a sudden Spring here in MN. Snow is gone and the temps in the 60s. We will be able to do a lot of winter clean-up, but must restrain our inclinations and not work in the actual gardens. New fencing perhaps if the ground has thawed.

    So, nothing really new here. Just a normal Spring except for not being able to spend time with our neighbors and family. No emotional issues. We are really lucky.

    Take care everyone, and stay safe.

  • #27432

    Cinnamon Grammy


    Mama Cando. I am concerned about the post office issue, also. If it closed, then there will be serious consequences for everyone, including lack of delivery of packages, and promised checks.

    Hey, Crow bar, since you were successful in your bathroom you can come and do ours. He toilet was installed too close to the wall, the tank is against the wall and since it sweats the wallboard is buckled and flaking away.  The toilet has terrible condensation and damaged the base of the sink cabinet, and the floor squeaks.  Plus the bathroom light needs to be replaced.  Just a couple of things.  Not going to do them though until we can afford the put new sheetrock in the bathroom and add a tile floor and new fixtures.

    I disagree with some of the stores placed on the non-essential list. It is Spring and we must put in our gardens. We need supplies and seeds. The craft stores will be a life-line for parents to keep their kids occupied, plus learning crafts and art, and other skills.

    I don’t need a hair salon since Hubby does mine and I his. Besides, if we are not going anywhere, does it really matter? There are those who will disagree with that, though.

    Sending good wishes to those who are having issues with this isolation and virus. Some have family members either in situations that are risky, or are actually sick. And others have jobs that have been furloughed, or loss of income. I hope everyone can stay well and mentally positive.


    • #27446

      Crow Bar

      @Cinnamon Granny,
      Funny, your new toilet is too close, our new one has a gap from the wall!
      Condensation? Sounds like the toilet is drawing coldness from either the water, or the floor. Maybe a thin piece of insulation between the toilet and where it meets the floor?

  • #27462

    grannyj smith

    I found some pancake mix that only requires water, a canned ham and a large can of macaroni pasta online at Walmart that I will add to the pantry.  I have lots of beans,rice and oatmeal in the pantry and if worse comes to worse maybe could be used for bartering.  I have a feeling many people stocked beans and rice for this crisis thinking as I did this was the way to go.

    If or when things ever get back to normal at the stores and online I am redoing the foods I stock for I feel I did everything wrong when it came to trying to prepare.  I now know there was much more I should have or could have done in preparing, but I can’t change the mistakes I made only learn from them.

    Waiting for Amazon to ship my canning rings so I can put up the frozen sausage from the freezer in jars and can for using to make sausage gravy.


  • #27463

    Mama cando

    Cinnamon, Glad to hear you’re doing well. Sorry about the problems with the toilet. Hope you can get it fixed soon.  Our toilets are smack up against the wall too. Toilet is not sweating so far but then it’s not summer here yet. So far P.O. is still delivering things, bills, junk ads etc LOL Other than that things are going good here.

    Went to the fresh store this morning , veggies and fruit are still coming in so we’re doing good on the fresh stuff. Store was clearancing out the Manichewits small tubes of do it your self veggie soup mix. It makes just enough soup for the two of us for a meal  so I snapped up the last 4 packages. They are slowly getting other things in. Did get a couple of packs of cod and tilapia for us. With just the two of us here, it’s getting hard to get the smaller cans and packages of stuff. Have been repackaging things but can only fit so much into the freezer. Stores don’t have enough yet for me to buy bulk and can it.

    talked to SIL in NV, they are doing good  she’s working from home but since brother is in construction he still has to go out and do the inspections and punch lists.He did FINALLY get some shampoo HA HA HA.  Told her next time let me know and I’ll send him some LOL.  She did say they can’t get LR41 batteries for the thermometer, Amazon was out when they placed their order. Told her I will look for some next time I go out  and send them to her if I can. SIL did say our other brother is working from home now and driving other SIL nuts. She manages a storage facility and they live on site. So she put together a “honey do” list for him. Baby Bro in WA is ticked off cause he can’t go to work (electrician) on the Navy Docks there. HE says this thing is overblown… well all 5 of us older sibs jumped his **$T told him to buck up baby cakes this is for real.  You may not have come into contact with someone but your co workers could have and can get you sick without you knowing it.Sent me a note this am, apologizing as he just heard one of the coworkers he doesn’t have any contact with has the virus now.  Told him to watch his 6 and to stay safe.

  • #27519


    Food Storage 101. Lots of homework. With food prices increasing I did some homework. This weeks lesson was Mylar bags, oxygen absorbers ect.

    Ordered a vac sealer after all, to seal up packages of oxygen absorbers. A couple of sites suggested that or a mason jar with a seal. I opted for the former.

    Mylar bags and oxygen absorbers are next on the list. Looking a dehydrators also

    Garden is doing well. Eggplant has taken off and I have a flower on the tomato plant.

    Wishing all a wonderful Easter.

    • This reply was modified 9 months, 2 weeks ago by  corsaire.
    • #27547

      Crow Bar

      Good to hear you got the vacuum sealer on the way.

      After two very nice spring days, we got about a half an inch of snow last night.

  • #27603

    grannyj smith

    Today I had to go out and pick up some extra milk, bread and eggs before this virus gets in the town where we shop.  DH is having hissy fit because I put the extra milk in the freezer and he is saying it will be no good, I don’t know for sure but I think I read somewhere where milk and cheese can be frozen.

    I purchased ten baby chicks while I was out in town today so in about five or six months we will be able to get fresh eggs, but they didn’t have any roosters so will have to try and get one later.

    DH got the new clothes line up so we can hang clothes out to dry hoping to save a little on propane.  Here lately I guess I have been worrying too much about everything and regretting that I did not get more prepared and thinking it may be too late to do anything.

    Maybe I need a little more sleep and rest in order to think clearer.


  • #27604


    Yes indeed.Milk and cheese can be frozen.Both are in my freezer now.

    Grocery shelves are filling up again except for flour and rice. Limits are still in place for some things though.

  • #27617

    Mama cando

    granny j, just make sure you shake the milk up after you defrost. Although its homogenized, pasteurized mom found it did separate a bit when unfrozen. Also some cheese gets a bit crumbly when de thawed. At least that’s what has happened to me. Just wish I could convince DH to put up a clothes line 🙁

    Not sure if this will help corsaire but here’s someplace for mylar bags  mylarbagsdirect.com.

  • #27658

    Loving Life

    Hi Everyone! I haven’t posted since February. I was super busy through mid-March when everything started coming to a screeching halt.
    First, on a good note, I have continued the January challenge. I have lost 16 pounds, gained muscle, upped my exercise level and had overall good results.

    Second, I want to say thank you for this website and all those that post. I have done the challenges for the last couple of years and periodically posted. Thank goodness I did as I was semi-prepared (you are never fully prepared for everything) for this pandemic.

    When everyone was rushing to the stores to buy toilet paper, I merely checked my inventory to see how many tp rolls I had. Check, enough for over a year! Yes, I did the happy dance. Shortages of rice and pasta, check I had enough for several months, possibly a year. I did a quick inventory check (Thank you @daisy for recommending a detailed written inventory).

    After reviewing the inventory, I looked at what I really needed for the next few months. While the grocery was mobbed, I did an early Sunday morning run to the hardware store to buy more seeds, planting supplies, wood stove cleaner, 2 extra propane tanks for grill, extra lighters for wood stove, and a few miscellaneous supplies. I did a quick grocery run, but I only needed fresh fruits and vegetables. The checkout gal looked at my cart strangely: 4 big bags of different potatoes, 6 bags of various onions, lots of fruits and vegetables. While I can, I want to eat fresh.

    Life has been fairly quite here in this rural area of NY. I hunkered down for the first few weeks. I am fairly self-sufficient with wood stove, solar, well, garden, and 2-3 years worth of seasoned wood. I cross-checked all my inventories, made a new budget (military retiree here), read some news, talked to friends and family on the phone, and just carried on.

    Medical friends told me immediately to wear mask and gloves. I had N95 industrial masks and disposable gloves. Before everyone else was wearing, I started wearing. I did share some of my masks with some friends (3 with compromised immune systems and/or co-morbidities). Is anyone else thinking they should have bought more masks, gloves, and such?

    My biggest worry is how this is going to effect us in the next 1-2 years. I foresee supply chain interruptions for at least 12 months. I have tried to check everything critical to my life for the next 12 months. I have some ideas on what I think will be in short supply, but I would be interested to hear what everyone else is stocking up on.

  • #27659

    Loving Life

    Oops. I forgot to ask. Has anyone had friends/families making inquiries as to if they could borrow some of your extra supplies? Or “oh you have do much put aside you should donate supplies to others”?

    I have felt a little pressure. I have practiced OPSEC with the masks, etc. In my inventory, I had some extras of things that I really don’t like, such as I don’t know why I bought tomato soup as I hate tomato soup. I have a box to donate of that type of items. Part of me feels some anxiety with even parting with these little things. Thoughts?

  • #27665


    I am stocking up on rice and flour. Dried beans and pasta also cause its easily stored and its something that for the most part I can’t grow. Also medicines, though I really should learn how to make my own.

    Yes I have had a couple of neighbors who have borrowed extra supplies. They are great and have helped me out numerous times so I dont mind.

    Nobody has mentioned anything about donations though. Most here are preppers of sorts, cause of living in hurricane country.

    Thanks for lead on Mylar bags MamaCando, I’ll look into that.

  • #27670

    Crow Bar

    @Loving Life,
    Good to see you again!
    Ya get snow over the past few days? We did! Sux!
    As for the soup, that is a hard question.
    On one hand, there are others that could use it.
    On the other, as much as I hate this over used term, OPSEC.
    It was one thing when I was in Afghanistan, something else when the Rambozwannabes use it ad nausea.
    Personally, just me, I would want to see the soup go to those in need.
    We have given away a few dozen eggs to friends.

  • #27672


    We use local pastors and food bank to distribute items never direct. None of our friends have asked but everyone here is resilient to this because of remoteNess of area big town is 3 hours each way so you go once a month max. 600 people in village more livestock than humans.


    There is a local info email done each day you can buy sell and ask for things… sometimes stuff just shows up at your place if you ask for it and if you don’t say I have one stop you can end up with multi copies.


    You know you live in hillbilly/redneck /prepper area when village has a  plan and manpower plan to  cut off community form outside using natural choke points in valley lol. You can also tell this by the moonshine/BBQ tasting and award weekend and it is taken very seriously and with great pride to win… 600 people 40 different shines lol. Show and shine with  old tractors down main street. Fall bake fair with skeet shooting competition and you have it with single shot only with load and shoot.


    2 Gun ranges one to 1 km  and other has a  fun house in it lol and the worst shots in town are the cops lol. last year  a 14 year old girl did the fun house faster and more accurate than half the town lol. She did the fun house while wearing rubber boots and a sun dress with a straw hat. She said this year she wants to compete in the adult category. .. yes there is a kid category. …


    The school to raise funds sells firewood and seeds. They have a bring a pet day at school and kids have brought calves horses piglets. ….


    There is horse tie rails water troughs at  tavern, coffee shop and farm store and you see horses tied up.


    You do give up the fine cuisine, multi cultural, fancy clothes and shopping selection of big cities. I thought it a worthy trade still the new guys after 7 years.







  • #27677

    Loving Life

    @crow bar. Yes, we had some snow here too. It’s already mostly melted. I just looked outside and saw snow flakes. April is strange here in Upstate. Enjoyed your comment about Rambowannabees! With over 25 years in the military, I actually understand and lived OPSEC. Lol!

    As to the “donations”, in the last few weeks, I have donated over 25 yards of fabric for our locals to make masks. I decided to donate the soup, other food items, and some cleaning supplies to the local family charity. I still have more than enough plus I hate that soup (why did I buy 12 cans??). Otherwise, I am keeping my supplies. I just hated that someone wanted to “guilt” me. They would probably have guilted me more if they knew all the supplies I actually have. Multiple and hidden locations! Lol!

    @namelus. I live in a rural area, but nothing like your rural. Lol! I have been here about 3 years; it took that long to even come close to be considered a “local”. I was jokingly told that I received a fast pass to local because of being retired military; still unsure whether they were really joking. Rural areas are different, but I have embraced the lifestyle.

    @corsaire. I agree on stocking up on items you can’t grow. I already stocked up on rice, pasta, and beans. I took my Grandmother’s lessons on a pantry to heart — always buys extras on sale and rotate. The pantry has about 6 months of readily available food. I also have my “emergency stores” which include rice, freeze dried foods, emergency pail foods, etc. I have several sealed containers of flour and sugar.

    This last week, I took some of my emergency money and bought extra wiper blades for the vehicles, coffee, person items, seeds, and other critical items that I thought I might need in the next 18 months (supply chain interruptions). How far is everyone else stocking up?

    I read/watch the news and see the hype plus lots of panicking people. I not ovely worried. Maybe it’s a function of being self-sufficient and living in a rural area. What’s everyone else’s level of worry?

  • #27715

    grannyj smith

    After storms hit with high winds, heavy rains and tornadoes Easter morning we still had a blessed day because we were spared any damage only power outage that we used as an excuse to nap and rest most of the day.  The kids had their egg hunt then their meal before we gave them their chocolate candy to enjoy.  I want to keep things as normal as I can for I don’t know how things will be in the coming months.

    I read where the UN is warning of food shortages coming in the next few weeks and urging people to start growing their own food,  there is already a food shortage here in our area. I know it is likely too late to start seeds, but I am doing it anyway praying they grow.



    • #27750

      Crow Bar

      We got the high winds last night.
      Like howling at the windows kind of howling.
      Did not lose power, but we had filled up a bunch of extra water containers.

  • #27738


    @oldmtwoman. Hope you are ok

    Ah the Mylar bag saga continues.Finished all my research and started to look for what I needed. Alas all the reputable companies are sold out of 1 gallon. So did some math and went with alternative sizes.

    Going to use a flat iron, the kind you straighten hair with to seal them. Saw it demonstrated on a few Youtube videos and its feasible.

    Garden is doing well.More flowers on the tomato and the eggplant is taking off. Except for gasoline, I am all set for hurricane season. Been telling people to take inventory and get supplies now. Sorry, Amazon 2 day shipping may not be up and running for things like batteries and tarps. And the food, with the quantity limits, its going to be tricky.

    Also kinda amazed how people are using masks as a fashion statement. Me, its gray man all the way.

    • This reply was modified 9 months, 1 week ago by  corsaire.
  • #27764

    grannyj smith

    In the old barn we are making a floor for the chicken house out of pallets that was given to us by the ag barn at school and we will cover the pallets with plywood and hopefully will keep foxes and other animals from digging under and getting to the chickens.

    Today I am taking the other two chicken breast and putting them in the crock pot with stuffing mix and cream of chicken soup and using ham left over from Easter to make beans with ham and using the last of the few bananas for banana pudding.  Oh my I feel like this is a great depression happening on my homestead.


  • #27766

    Cinnamon Grammy

    Greetings, All.

    Namelus, I’d like to visit your valley. Sounds nice.

    No one asks about borrowing out supplies because we live too far from any family to make it convenient. I’d help the young neighbors if they asked, though.  They have the guns, we have the food.

    Could mylar bags be used in the vacuum sealer the same as the plastic bags we are supposed to use?

    By the way, the toilet was improperly installed before we purchased the house. We are just dealing with it and putting off the major renovation.

    Screwy winter here. Very little sap from the maples. 60 degrees last Saturday, snowstorm on Sunday, and it is below zero and snowing again – lazy flakes.

    I have been doing piddly little things. I canned stew last week, and the jars were just labeled. Putting things away. Organizing. You know, the stuff that clutter up the counter tops and is just annoying. I still have not found my shopping list which is what started it all.

    We have not gone to the grocery for over two weeks. I intend to go tomorrow. I don’t “need” anything. Instead, I am thinking of what is in my freezer and how to can it, plus we have run out of sweets and chips/crackers. Don’t really need the sweets and crackers. I took ½ gallon of milk from the freezer and Hubby will have that for the first time tomorrow. He did not realize we could freeze it or that he had formerly-frozen milk before.

    Grandson’s college asked them to come and get their stuff from the dorms. No more on-site school for the rest of the year. Not surprised, although N. Dakota is not a very “hot” spot. MN is doing ok. We are keeping things low and people are staying home – at lest the ones that I know.

    The lettuce plants are looking good. I do not have enough lights on the tomatoes. The four-foot fixtures I wanted to order are out of stock. If the outdoor temperatures rise above freezing, again, soon, I can put them outside during the day. The goal was to set up a winter food production shelf anyway. Nothing is happening to the sweet potatoes, no roots or shoots. Oh, well. I may need to put them in a pot and let them grow over the winter in the house. At least the leaves are edible.

    I just cannot get Hubby to agree to have chickens – for eggs or meat. He does enjoy the eggs we get from our local farmers, but not enough to raise even three for ourselves. He is going out to try and fix a garden fence that is falling down.  Need to keep the deer out and we don’t want them thinking that if it ok to jump the fence now it will be ok when the crops are ripe.

    I checked with our Joann Fabric and Craft Store – they are open with reduced hours. I hope to get Hubby to let me go shopping later in the week. The fabric I have for masks is too thin and I need interfacing to make them better. Plus, I want other fabric for other projects and some special fabric to make masks for each person in my family. I have patterns for masks that have pockets for the N-95 and surgical masks. I intend to make several masks for each person, of each type, out of a signature fabric for them. That way they will know which ones are theirs, and with the pockets all of it can be reused.

    Time is going slowly today. Fortunately, Hubby and I are getting along well and feel no real pressure to go anywhere. I do miss my kids and grandkids, though.

    Take care everyone – be safe, and stay sane.

  • #27770


    @cinnamongrammy for behind the toilet you might want to try cement board they use around fire place it’s thinner and you can paint it to look like  drywall but is water resistant.  At the gap between the drywall thickness and the cement board you can use some trim to hide it and make it showy if you want with with making the cement board higher significantly and using a nice crown moulding as a shelf hiding the seam.


    Or you can use cement board and use the bathroom shower liner on top of it since water proof.

  • #27792

    Loving Life

    Wow, what a storm. The window were awful, so many trees came down. I was without power most of Monday and part of Tuesday. Thank goodness for the wood stove. I spent most of yesterday and today doing clean-up.

    @cinnamon granny. Happy to hear I am not the only one not going to the stores. I go about every two weeks for mostly fresh fruits and vegetables plus some milk. I am with your hubby on no chickens. I get my eggs from one of my neighbors. Nothing like fresh eggs, but I will leave the raising of the chickens to someone else. Sounds like your garden is really coming along. I just recently started my seeds. It will be a bit before anything can be planted outside — it just snowed today.

    Just taking it one day at a time now. Like most of the posters, I am working on my garden. I also was able to score some extra canning jars for later.

    I have decided to take it weekly in the decision on when to go back to my PA house to get it ready for the mid May listing date. If things get bad in PA while I am there, I am fairly confident on my ability to bug out and get back to my NY house. A year or two ago, I practiced a quick bug out (out of the house in about 20 minutes) and I navigated my route using maps and compass as to stay off the major highways. I even did the exercise again, but the next time I did it at night. I am really glad I did it as I know I can do it.

    I don’t think it will get bad that quick but I want to ready just in case. It should only take about 2 weeks to get the house ready to sell. As soon as I list the PA house, I am heading back North. Real estate agent thinks it will sell quickly. Keep your fingers crossed for me.

    @corsaire Thanks for reminding to check the sealer. I checked and I have plenty of bags. My dear stepmother gave me the whole setup a few years ago and included lots of extra bags. Nice to know that you can use a flatiron as a backup sealer.

    Everyone take care, stay safe, and stay sane!

    • #27811

      Crow Bar

      Yeah, we got some of that wind too.
      No power outages, but we did top off a bunch of water containers as a just in case.

  • #27793

    Mama cando

    Cinnamon, The food sealer will seal the mylar but it’s been my experience that not all the air comes out of the bag. You could try and see how your bags come out. My “sucky” machine,( friend and I call it that) has a vac+seal button on it and just a seal button on it. SO I did the vac n seal and because I’m paranoid (lol) ran it with just the seal button. Basically sealed it twice but it was the first time I had used it with the mylar bags. Glad to see some out there can still get things like material, etc.We’re not able to get things for the garden  or the small projects we wanted to do in the house (thanks Gov.) DH did go out today and was able to get the kitty litter, our grouchy ole’ Miss Chloe was happy, Chip was Meh about it, all he wants is the weather to stop being cold so he can be out in the 3 season room in the sun. We have about an inch of snow and it’s still snowing so it’s miserable and cold. I’ve got the grandbaby blues, haven’t been able to hug them BUT I get to face time and that’s helping. Both DIL’s have been real good about posting pics for us to see and calling us. I am worried with some of the bigger meat plants shutting down, Son2 will have a hard time at the store, he gets a LOT of people in his store that aren’t so nice. Most of the people are decent  who’ve fallen on hard times but a few are the gimme dat type. He’s in management so he may not be furloughed if it gets worse.So far he says they are getting things in and the company does have some local ways (farmers) of getting in supplies.

    Well enough of my pity party, Stay safe and have a good day.


    • This reply was modified 9 months, 1 week ago by  Mama cando.
  • #27812


    @mama cando

    Tell son to place add for the farmers market people.they have  tons of stuff to sell no venue… a match possibly. They need income store needs food.


    There is going to be a break in transport soon talked to part supplier they are empty  now trucks sitting dead because you can’t find a part.  Consumables like tires batteries and head lights all made in China and zero stick left same thing for passenger vehicles.


    If not getting from local source  it might as well be the moon.


    If you are not self sufficient start looking to make those connections to local food. A local farmers market group here now has a delivery and a pick up option. Right now we have zero pigs available for 6 months all presold with deposit of 50% today’s price with allowance for cost increase by finishing time.


    For us we traded lb per lb pork for buffalo. One of the contractors we need for new buildings has agreed to be paid for labor in pork and cash for the materials. Pork part is in tens of thousand of dollars in labor.


    The gun shop we use has asked to be paid in pork products instead of cash….  the bartering is starting.


    Our fuel guy also asking for meat to trade for fuel…. we normally sell to all of these people but usually each transaction is cash at time of sale not give us product instead of cash even if in future….. things getting bad.

    • #28167

      Mama cando

      namelus, Sorry I didn’t get back to you. Son2 said they have things in place locally. Things may not be in great abundance but we should get things as time goes on. Although he did say a lot of stuff “we’re” used to getting won’t be available. Not sure what he meant by that but I suspect he was talking about the gimme dat, baby mama crowd.  DIL2 has a couple of friends that she can get eggs and veggies from. She believes the friends farms are not connected to any large aggro company, so they CAN sell at the farmers market in town. We have a few different farms like that around here. I just hope they don’t get too inundated this summer. It will be pricier than usual but as I usually buy locally, it won’t be too big of hit on the budget.

  • #27931

    OldMt Woman

    Greetings all!  Yes, Corsaire, thanks.  DH and I are doing fine.  This all is not so much different for us.  It’s getting late so I’ll have to return [tomorrow?] and catch up on this LONG thread.  Seems like I’ve been busier than ever…but I’m used to nearly always being home.  DH and I have comorbidity factors….and our elderlies.  So far; so good.

    OldMtWoman ….more later.  Stay safe!!

  • #27947

    OldMt Woman

    Glad to read that all of your prepping has now paid off.  We were quite sick back at the beginning of this year and depleted some OTC products.  I was still not up-to-speed when DH noted that we’d better replenish all that NOW.  It was several weeks before the main RUSH hit the stores.  We also got more paper products, disinfecting products, and a bunch of Quick/Easy to fix food.  We’d wiped that out during illness too.

    Then DH caught the prepping bug and began to order things for delivery.  Set us up to regularly receive vitamins, particularly Vit C concentrated, Vit D, zinc, etc.  Began taking those immediately.  Devouring fresh veggies to restore our immune system!!  Gatorade for fluid/electrolyte replacement if we’re sick.  He ordered other things for SIP.   With all the snow that kept up this season, the delivery folks had to drop some of that at the bottom of our hill.  Not a nice winter!

    Then we caught word that garden seeds were getting hit.  Got that stocked back up.  All our previous seeds are old but might have some germination when I get to start the seedling table.  Due to really adverse conditions for gardens, we haven’t had one in years.  Usually we are avid gardeners but this place will eat you alive!  Between extremely short growing season and all the marauding critters..floods/drought… Hmph!

    So…..I’ve concocted a plan for a greenhouse protected by fencing.  From stuff I acquired at garage sales thru the years.  As of yet, we aren’t warm enough at all.  And I’ve spotted ‘wascally wabbits living under the pallet platform where the greenhouse for container garden will be.  They will get an eviction notice eventually.  Or an invitation for stew!  Chicken wire will need to be installed.  Doing research on better ways to container garden in arid climate.  Hate to use new systems when we might REALLY need the veggies but the old systems will not work.  Have been dehydrating any produce we can buy in minor quantities at store.

    We’ve also been keeping the elderlies supplied with milk/eggs/a bit of meat.  They don’t go out much in normal times so the only thing they miss is seeing us.  DH drops off food bags for them, filling their wish lists for groceries.  But keeps distance since he’s just been in store.  They sanitize everything too.  We take a lot of precautions with any exposure.  It’s weeks between shopping trips.  I’d warned our elderlies.  They shopped well before it all became apparent and things became scarce.  They’re doing fine.

    OldMtWoman….itching to begin my seed table!  🙂  Snow in forecast.  🙁

    • This reply was modified 9 months ago by  OldMt Woman.
  • #27963


    Glad to hear that you are well OldMtWoman and thanks for the updates

    I ordered seeds for fall and later planting. Its a bit tricky cause of the climate. We usually dont have frosts and cool weather veggies are tricky if not impossible here. Ordered from a company that specializes in seeds for FL. Really should pick up that book by David Wolf which focuses on FL.

    Plants are still doing well. Car not so much as I left the keys in the ignition and in the “on” position. The battery also has the crusties on both terminals. Auto parts stores are open and the battery that I need is in stock.

    Now a bit of a vent/rant…

    Kinda getting tired of all the media hate of the sunshine state. Jacksonville decides to open their beaches and rampage begins….again.

    Just getting old and annoying.

  • #28046

    Mama cando

    Hey all Hope you’re all doing well. Went to the store today and got a lot of veggies and some meat. DH went to get our scripts and was able to pick up the few things I couldn’t get at that grocery store. Last Friday, DH brought the mail in(wiped it down) and said look a letter from the court. opened it and whee, my Takada settlement came in. Joking told DH here’s my 50cents, but surprise, got almost $75 back.That will come in handy. It’s snowing AGAIN here, getting a little tired of it. Anyone having problems getting things from Amazon? Don’t know if it’s their 3rd party people or not but ordered a thermometer 3 weeks ago (none around here) and it still isn’t here. Contacted A and got an email from the seller. It’s supposedly still on it’s way here BUT if I don’t see it by the 24th, they’ll refund me. Fat lot of good that will do. Oh well,guess we’ll be using the meat thermometer from now on. LOL.Not sure if you all heard but the Spam plant closed due to the virus, called my sister (we’re the only two that will eat it) SO she’s going to add that to her list when they go shopping on their day to shop.She said people around her won’t eat it (lots on the shelves) so she should be able to stock up on that.  Things are still coming into the stores and the limits are still in place. One of DH’s meds were not there so either he or I will have to go back tomorrow and get that one.Did go to Costco Tuesday, their shelves are looking much better but they also have limits on a lot of things. But I got a few things I’ve not been able to get at the regular stores. Got the stuff to make my own laundry detergent, so we’re good to go now.Was worried I’d have to use the Lava soap on the clothes HA HA.Township is holding their meeting via Zoom, DH says that should be interesting, he also got word Census will also do a video meeting to finish up the training that was shut down. Me I’ve been crocheting Christmas gifts, hot pads for the DIL’s. Need to find out the grand kids most favoritest colors and make them scarves and hats for Christmas. Other than that we’ve been doing okay. Can’t plant yet but I hope the weather gets better soon and we can get out in the dirt. Stay safe everybody.


  • #28048

    Crow Bar

    @Mama Cando,
    I ordered some tools from Amazon.
    They took a little longer, but they got here.

  • #28051


    Amazon is running about a month for deliveries.If you order food however it will get here quicker. Some Walmart sellers arent any better. Ordered something from Ikea and that also will take a month.

    The grocery stores and pharmacies are getting thermometers in.You just have to catch it at the right time, or make some calls and see if-when deliveries are expected.

  • #28060


    Lol with thermometer. …. we have one for the pigs and spares…. it looks like a human one but short and stubby alcohol filled and in Celsius.  Since you take pig temp the butt we use a plastic sheath which is disposable and has a tie point for string in case it goes up further than required.  One person here saw it and thought to take their own temp with it… in the mouth…. it is always in a glass jar with isopropyl soaking it ….  was funny to see look on face when I told.them why they uses the pig ass thermometer in their mouth to take temp when doc has a digital one.


    I think they still can taste pig ass even though it’s just a mental thing and is perfectly safe to use… the look on their face made me laugh so hard as they ran to the hose and washed out their mouth.  Last time they will stick anything into their mouth without checking it use first



    • This reply was modified 9 months ago by  namelus.
  • #28062

    Mama cando

    namelus,  ROFL Read that to DH he’s still laughing…  That’s funny.  Not to be mean but it served them right. Well I got one more day but I suspect (maybe wrongly) If it doesn’t show up tomorrow I bet someone in the distribution center took it. I found another thermometer in the half bath down in the basement Saturday when I was cleaning out one of the drawers (have no idea how it got down there, though) but we need a battery for it, keeps saying low battery. Supposedly the batteries for it will be here Sunday or Monday along with the other stuff I ordered. Got a few books coming that are being shipped rather quickly. So I should be good to go on reading material for awhile. Still crabby , it’s raining and I wanna go out and play in the dirt. Can’t do plants in the house because the Chipster cat keeps eating them.  He’s even tried to eat the silk flowers. Thought we had figured a way to keep him off the kitchen counter but that bugger figured out if he got on top of the cabinet by the fridge (they are about a foot from the ceiling, I put my Santas up there at Christmas ) and jump to the one over the counter he can get to the window sill and chomp my greens. Had to move my 3yr old poinsettia because of him. Unfortunately Fred (yeah i named him) didn’t take to his new location and died last year. But Chip’s learning and hasn’t gotten in the window for awhile. So I’m hoping next year I’ll be able to get my stuff going and Chip won’t bother them. He’s such a nut, Miss Chloe is still trying to “mother” him but he’s 3 now and doesn’t want her to be “mom” anymore.

  • #28063

    grannyj smith

    Such a funny story, thank you for posting it.

    I am in need of canning help.  CDC says prepare for another wave of this virus to hit during flu season this year, so I have decided to start canning a little each week.  Daisy posted some canning recipes that I am going to do and was wondering if you’ll have some favorite meals you’ll put up in canning jars.


  • #28064

    Mama cando

    grannyj, Thank you didn’t mean to be funny but I’m glad if you and others got a kick out of it. I’ve not done any pressure canning (didn’t get the canner til late last year), only water bath canning and dehydrating things. I have put meals in jars using dehydrated things like carrots, beans, Lipton soup mixes, bouillon cubes or powder bouillon, etc for soup.  I’ve had to help our son and DIL down south with the children over the last couple of years (work and health problems) so I’m afraid I am so behind on a few things. I’d be glad to contact my cousin, she’s been canning for 9-10 years now and see what she can suggest if you’d like.

  • #28087

    grannyj smith

    Another round of severe weather came Wednesday with tornadoes that took three lives and destroyed many homes,  then last evening a major hail storm hit. The noise on this tin roof was so loud I was afraid it was going to knock holes in it, thankfully about twenty minutes it was gone, no damage as far as we can tell.

    I am going out today and get some battery powered lights because it’s tax free weekend here in Texas for upcoming hurricane season.

    I got tired of trying to hand pull weeds out of my raised garden bed so I purchased this tool called Grandpa’s Weed Puller, so more hand pulling weeds and it works great.  My seeds have started to come up now was worried they were old and would not grow, but they are coming up and the only other vegetable seeds I could find was at the feed store and they want over twenty dollars a pound for seeds.

    Today the new motor for the garden tiller comes in and that will help a lot in gardening by getting the tiller fixed.  Just have to take one day at a time and do the best I can do with everything that’s going on.


  • #28090

    Crow Bar

    @granny J Smith,
    Yaozah! Hail like that! We have had some small stuff but nothing like that!

  • #28091

    Crow Bar

    Today was a beautiful day!
    Sunny! High in the 60s!
    I cleaned out all my raised bed gardens of up coming weeds and left over detritus from last year. Planted some green onions, chard, leeks, regular yellow Spanish onions and potatoes.
    In my larger pond, I am seeing minnows.
    I NEED to get bluegill or large mouth bass to stock the pond with.
    Maybe more crayfish.

  • #28099



    All my plants are doing ok. Have fruits on the tomato and pepper plant and the eggplant is beginning to flower

    Looks like rainy season has begun here. Technically it starts in May.

    If anyone needs yeast, Amazon 3rd party sellers has SAF red instant, mostly in a set of 2 of the one pound packages. I think there was 1 vendor who was selling the gold, and another the premium.

    Last day for the Mother earth mini-course. Found the one on fermenting very helpful. There are PDF downloads if you dont have the time to watch them all.

    • This reply was modified 8 months, 4 weeks ago by  corsaire.
    • This reply was modified 8 months, 4 weeks ago by  corsaire.
  • #28102

    Cinnamon Grammy

    Greetings, All.  Much to do here in the Spring.

    I hope all of you are well. We are experiencing Spring here in SE Minnesota, a little later this year than last. We are zone 4 and cannot plant anything yet because last freeze is around Mother’s Day. But, we can get out into the garden and do maintenance. Days in the 60s with nights around freezing make great working weather.

    I covered the new strawberry bed with compost, dug it in slightly, then transplanted 38 plants into the wood-framed bed we created last fall. I then covered the bed with netting to make sure no critter can get in. The little mice and voles will though. I don’t think the freezes that will come will be hard enough to kill the transplants. I took them from the walkway around the bed we have had for the last few years. We were chased in by a rain squall today, so perhaps I can de-grass that original strawberry bed tomorrow since it has been dry here lately. Then, on to taking out the old raspberry canes from the patches in the woods to make getting to this year’s crop easier. Need to get a lot more compost for the vegetable beds that were not prepared last fall. We are getting slower on working the gardens because we do not have the muscle strength and stamina we did when we moved here ten years ago. Shorter work days.

    The currants came back! We though we had lost them to the neighbors herbicide spray. I was concerned about them turning black last fall and losing all of their leaves but they have good leaf buds. So I will do some trimming on them to open them up.

    No asparagus yet. Nor any flowering fruit trees. The trees will bloom next month.


    Hubby has been installing new fence posts. Some were rotting, and others had the fencing falling down. We need to keep the larger critter out – deer. I don’t know how to get rid of the pocket gopher that is in one of the gardens. We were not successful with trapping last year and it is still here this spring. We’ll try again. I do not know if that is what ate the cabbage or not.

    The 2-ft long garden planter box that I put the lettuce in is doing well in a west window with an additional lamp. We have enjoyed a few leaves from it. In the south window, in the new “seedling shelving”, I just do not have enough lights. The light order I made is still out of stock. The seedlings for the cole crops are not getting enough light and are really straggly. On the other hand, the tomatoes in the same spot are doing ok. At least the stems of the tomatoes can be planted deeper and create more roots. I don’t think that broccoli or cabbage like to be planted so deeply. They are going outside every day to take advantage of the sunlight and warmth.

    We are enjoying slices of warm homemade bread with butter and homemade jelly. Hubby has made our bread for the last several years. However, it does not do well as a “bun” because it will not hold together. There is more work to do on his recipe.

    Beef shanks are simmering in the pot to can beef and barley soup later today. I had been trying to empty the freezer of odds and ends. I found some chicken wings that were five years old; they had been cooked and kept in a vacuum-sealed package. Tasted just fine with barbecue sauce. A couple other things, such as some pork, had not fared as well. Little by little I am emptying the freezer, through meals and canning, so I can put more in after the garden is harvested.

    I had to get my prescription meds the other day so we took the opportunity to do some shopping. Got some fresh vegetables and fruits, then went to the fabric store. Our Joann Fabric, and Walmart, are 20 miles away so we think twice or three times before running to that town. The staff of both stores were all wearing masks; Walmart was spraying its carts and put plexiglass up at the pharmacy.   The fabric store was limiting customers.

    I told my daughter and her family that I wanted to make masks for each of them. Each person have their own special fabric color/pattern so they knew who was wearing what. She ordered over $300 dollars worth of fabric to be sent to me, in two-yard minimum cuts. I have no idea how many pieces she ordered. Choosing the appropriate fabric and getting it ordered was a chore in itself. It will arrive in the next few days. We should have gotten it two months ago when there was snow on the ground and I had the time to sew and not worry about preparing garden beds. $300+ means dozens of yards of fabric = how many masks? She said she wanted to contribute somehow to help others and decided that SHE could purchase the fabric and I could do the sewing and then WE can donate the masks. Nice of her to volunteer me; but, I offered. Sorta.

    It is getting more difficult to handle my husband. I need to be more patient. Besides needing hearing aids, he is just not paying attention. He wanted to change something on his email and I told him where to go to do it, the upper right corner of his email inbox screen. He confused his desktop with the internet page then complained that I was wrong. I tell him about A, and B, and C, and he thinks I have said AC and cannot hear the differences. This is a man with a PhD who has been very sharp and insight-full. His recent lack of understanding has to do with short-term memory skills and listening, thinking instead of hearing to understand, and I think a couple TIAs. The problem is, when I tell him he has not heard me correctly, and ask him to stop talking so he can understand, he tells ME to stop that he understands just fine. I know “better and worse.” Patience is something I need to work on. I have never suffered fools lightly and unfortunately my husband is not able to input new materials. His old memories are fine – too fine; I am getting stories more frequently now. And he talks to the television when we are watching a news program that we need to be LISTENING to. I am very grateful for TIVO instant replay. He is also verbalizing all of the steps he is taking for whatever project he is undertaking. As if I need to know what to enter where, or know where he just placed his screwdriver. Ah, yes. 81 years old. He has threatened to live for another 30 years. I won’t be able to handle it. I just won’t get my hearing aids then I won’t hear his mistakes. As long as he is not misinterpreting things that could be dangerous, things are fine.

    I am trying to talk my daughter into purchasing a freezer. With four teenage boys in the house they need more than their refrigerator. The convincing is not going well. Plus, the supply of freezers is – nearly non-existent. All from China I suppose. She would need to create a place for it, too, in a small house or in her garage. If she orders one now, she would get it when they can pay for it and when they should be stocking up for the fall surge of Covid cases. Still, I just cannot reason with her. She thinks that I am “prepper-scared” because I “see” more than is actually there. She should know by now that I am not “scared” because I do “see” ahead, am able to plan, and am usually correct.


    Seeing clearly ahead is a benefit of the hive-mind of this club. For that, thanks to all of you and to Daisy for starting the Prep Club.

    Best wishes and stay safe.

  • #28137

    grannyj smith

    Are things ever going to be restocked again, I am so tired of needing things only to find it out of stock when ordering online and in the grocery store.

    The school has been bringing the kids lunch on Tuesday and Friday and they put little bags of baby carrots in their lunch and the kids will not eat all them,  so today I added those carrots with some potatoes and made pot roast. Had a half bag of butterbeans and a roll of cream corn so made that also for supper and that was the last of those vegetables and made the last box of brownies.

    Friday I am going out to Sam’s and a couple grocery stores to try and get some extra things that may not be available next month.  Don’t think life will go back to normal for us because we still think that virus will be around for a long time and have to get ready and prepared the best we can if or when a second round hits.

    Hope and pray all is well with you’ll.


  • #28169

    Mama cando

    Well, guess what FINALLY arrived?? yup the thermometer, so I had to email the seller and tell them NOT to refund the money. I hope they don’t send the money back to amazon. NO I’m not going to return it. Although I may have to send them some money directly IF they weren’t able to stop processing the refund. Did go out this morning to the store for DH’s scripts. was able to get some more meat fairly reasonably but still bill was higher than usual, things are getting expensive. When I got home DH informed me the sump pump is going out. Great!!!. He’s staying downstairs tonight to keep an eye on it as he thinks only the back up pump is running. Gotta call tomorrow and have the guys from the basement company come and either fix it or replace it IF they can come out this week as we are starting a rainy “season”. now. Oh the joys of home ownership LOL.

    • #28176

      Crow Bar

      Well, at least you have a thermometer now!

      Bummer about the sump pump.

  • #28180

    Mama cando

    Yup Contacted the 3rd party seller, they had not processed the return yet, they called me and said thank you for being honest.Told the young man if they had set the refund , was going to put check in the mail. He told me they have been getting a few of the shipments delayed by USPS and a few (scumbags) get refunds and then when the goods do actually show up, just keep them. Told him in MY book, that is stealing and I do NOT steal, he said they put names on do not take orders from list. I mean what can they do, they are a business after all. As for the sump, the guys will be here next Wednesday as it hasn’t completely stopped. DH thinks it’s the switch on the top of the unit that’s gone bad (they do have a tendency to go out) and as long as the back up pump still works we should last til then and we need the back up battery replaced, DH found out should have done that couple of years ago OOPS!!

    Went to my natural store this morning and they are getting really low on meat and seafood but my buddy said they are talking to a couple of local farmers to see if they can get some cows,pigs and possibly chickens from them rather than the farmers destroying them like we’ve been hearing. They can dress out the meat fairly easily in the in store butcher shop.  SO it goes on. Stay safe and God help us all.

  • #28194

    Osito Arelano

    Learned how to can beef this month.  One of the gaps I discovered in my preps. It went better than expected. Now to find beef on sale to process before it vanishes off shelves.

    Garden early plants are up, that’s encouraging.  Got lumber coming to redo two raised beds. Going to be a busy spring.

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