Here are clips from this week’s comments to, hopefully, pique your interest enough to go back, read, and perhaps even join the conversation!

– Bev


  • Suni says:

December 5, 2012 at 2:16 pm

John from Iowa, I mostly agree with you but where we disagree is on the canning process. They now sell Tattler rings and lids and they are reusable. Yes the jars are fragile but so are most things that are used in the fact at some point in time it will either be used up or broken with no place to buy a replacement. I currently have over 20 dozen empty canning jars, bands and lids this doesn’t include my other types of food storage. We also garden which means we harvest our own seeds and replant them the following year. Also the pressure canner that I use is called All American Canner and it doesn’t use gaskets. So no problem there. Even back in the 1800’s they canned their own food. We also hunt and fish although I do think in TEOTWAWKI situation that fish and game will become very rare as a great many more will be doing the same thing. The need to be self renewing IE rabbits, chickens, goats, and if you have the room cattle will be very important. Also my home canned goods will last a very long time well over a year or two which will hopefully give me enough time to harvest and can more.

John from Iowa says:

December 5, 2012 at 2:23 pm

Yep! Friends of mine have said “you spend all that money on Prepping stuff, what if nothing happens? It’s wasted!”. I just ask them, “is it any different than when you buy or pay for your insurance?”. Peace of mind is the key.

  1. Bev says:

December 5, 2012 at 4:04 pm

Hey Suni,

Don’t forget your favorite family recipes! “A taste of Granny’s Cookin’”

More than a decade ago I did a “Family Cookbook” for Christmas one year for all my brothers and sisters. Favorite family recipes interspersed with inspirational quotes and Biblical Scripture (Yes, it was a testimonial.) Mom is getting up in age and we will lose that taste if the recipes aren’t shared.

It took some time on a print shop copier and I had the covers laminated. Best Christmas present I think I ever made! Loved by all and I was even asked for extra copies, which I couldn’t/wouldn’t provide, for their friends. That was a lot of work! But truly worth it! They are still cherished by family members!

The other thing that I did for my Grandmother when she was in her 90s for Christmas (Actually, her last.) was a booklet of HER children’s and grandchildren’s memories of her and some precious family pictures (Also made copies for the Aunts and Uncles who contributed). She was in the rest home by then and it meant soooo much to her. I understand that she asked someone to read it to her almost every day before she passed. It was a good thing.

Imagine if you put together a “Granny’s Old Ways” book? With pictures and memories… How much that will be cherished by your children and grandchildren, perhaps even great-great-great grandchildren you will never know, but they will know you. And, perhaps, you may even save their lives one day.

Luv Ya Suni!


  1. DougC says:

December 5, 2012 at 6:58 pm

Really good info, especially the reusable lids.

John, just tell people any food bought last year and stored is a great financial investment. 10-15% cheaper than if it is bought today and the gain is tax free! I have cans of soup that I paid $1.00 a can on sale that now regularly sell for $1.50-$1.75

Food is a great investment on many levels.

  1. Wyzyrd says:

December 6, 2012 at 7:40 pm

Goat, that’s not too old, is absolutely DELICIOUS. (Supposedly, the most commonly eaten meat on Earth). Don’t let it scare you,
more than worth a try.

The few advantages to the ‘creeping suburbanization’ in my area, are that there is now a very, very good Jamaican cafe that makes wonderful curry (and jerk) goat, and a larger Latin supermarket where I can get fresh goat meat (though I still get odd looks from the checkout folks when the old Gringo guy buys ‘cabrito’ )

A couple years ago, I had to go out of town on business for about a week, and my 17-y.o. daughter house-and-cat-sat for me.
My ex came out to visit her, and she shocked her mom by not going to a chain-restaurant, but taking her to the neighborhood Jamaican place and saying “You GOTTA try this goat!” I was proud

I don’t have any ‘granny’ family recipes, because I learned to cook purely in self-defense. I do have a collection of mine that was supposed to go into a charity cookbook to help pay for my boss’ gf’s chemo. Will see if I can export them into a web-friendly format, post them on one of my sites and send Roarke and Bev a link, if there is any interest. (I guess ‘grandpa’ recipes count too.. I found out about a month ago that I officially am one of those)

  • Suni says:

December 3, 2012 at 4:16 pm

Okay Bev, you ask for it….LOL
The easiest canning would be hot water bath canning but has limited application. Making jellies, jams marmalades etc.. It would also be the least expensive. You can use almost any thick walled jar and any pot deep enough to cover those jars by at least 1 in. I still use the bands and lids for canning though. I have yet to make my own pectin for the thickening or jelling agent. Have been studying on how to do this though. Granny Smith apples peels are suppose to make great pectin. I will try this next year if I can get some fresh Granny Smith apples (not store bought). They need to be about 1 to 5 days picked for optimum results.

The best all around food preservation I think would be pressure canning. It will even do jellies if you choose to do it that way but it just isn’t necessary. It is more expensive though in the fact you will need a good (not expensive) pressure canner, canning jars, lids, bands and to be especially sanitary to make sure the process isn’t contaminated. Most foods that are pressure canned are low acid foods. Most vegetables, all meats and fish, and some of the newer types of tomatoes do not have enough acid in them to make them safe by hot water bath method. I also pressure can beef and chicken stock. Stews or soups as long as they do not contain any thickening agent or flour. You can pressure can on a wood stove but would need to be diligent about keeping the fire built high enough to keep the pressure up and a fire diffuser for an even heat over the bottom of the canner.

I like dehydrating especially veggies and some types of fruit but there again I use an elect. Dehydrator and food storage canning jar attachment to keep the dehydrated food for long term storage. I have not tried to use a non electric dehydrator but I have thought about building one. I have read about salt curing but have not done it. Would really like to learn through from someone that has actually done it. Also wood smoking would be something I would like to learn. In Texas we have a population of over 2 million wild hogs and the people I have spoken to that hunt them say they are good eating and can be hunted all year long because they are causing so much damage. Would like to smoke the meat on a wild hog. YUMMY

Okay I don’t know if I have made any sense writing this but if you have a specific question ask and I will try…… LOL

December 3, 2012 at 6:06 pm

A note: I have only tried this with (yes… legal, kitchen ) herbs (worked great), but supposedly also good for fruits/veggies/jerky, etc. to dry food w/o excess heat (better flavor). Does require electricity, a box fan, some paper furnace filters, and bungee cords.

Quick 3 minute HOWTO’s from Alton Brown of Food Network:

Don’t forget BOTH bungee cords

  1. Harriet says:

December 3, 2012 at 11:12 pm

And from the opposite side of the world, New Zealand

In the 1950s there was a stolid firm moral base. Everyone knew where they stood. Children were to be seen and not heard. Parents supported their children’s teachers especially where discipline was concerned. Authority was right and don’t you dare challenge it. All was improving in the world. All the men who wanted jobs could have a job and frugal families could afford to buy a home. Women got much less in the way of wages of course and many, such as nurses had to give up work if they were known to be married. Babies born out of wedlock were taken from their mothers and put up for adoption as mothers couldn’t work and look after a baby. There was no state financial support for unmarried mothers. Sexual and physical abuse was rife but because authority said it didn’t happen, then it wasn’t acknowledged. Good and bad.

In the 1960s we started to question authority. Teachers and police were only mostly right. Over the years the sentiment about following the US to war changed and it was generally felt that having our troops in Vietnam was wrong. It became accepted that the government could be morally wrong on this decision. Free love was only something that happened in that weird place called California. Marijuana smoking was only for the way-out few and most of us didn’t know where we could find it. Work hard, save hard and you will be rewarded. Marriage at 18 years was considered young but not unreasonable, though it was expected that you would be pregnant. Divorce became more prevalent.

1970s was a time when stereotypes of gender and race were questioned. Women decided it was OK to enjoy sex, or so the women’s magazines suggested. We all bought those women’s magazines, even me. But in the beginning we were all at home looking after our little ones. By the end of the decade it was expected that some women would go back to work when the youngest child was at school.

In the 1980s the SHTF when the country went bankrupt in 1984 and had to restructure to meet the IMF requirements. We, along with about a third of the population were restructured out of our savings and capital when we lost our jobs and businesses. It was a difficult time. If only we had been prepared life would have been so different. It took another 20 years to even start to climb out of the financial hole this created. At the same time the country decided to go bicultural and accept the indigenous Maori as equal partners. Many New Zealanders took off across the Tasman Sea to Australia to find work.

In the 1990s we were still struggling. I went to get further education, like many out of work women. By the middle of this decade competent men with a tertiary education could get work. Competent women were still struggling. An underclass of 10-15% of the population formed. More people go to Australia to find work.

Women can now work and be paid, at least in theory, the same as men, can hold bank accounts and go into business for themselves. Sexual and physical abuse is now considered to be a crime regardless of where it happened or when it happened. The internet and phone technology has made information freely available and has chained people to their gadgets. Big business has come to dominate our lives even more by making it seem cheaper for us to pay other people to make our clothes and grow our own food. We are becoming deskilled in a big way. Government (national, state and city) are imposing their standards on all in a way which stops us from doing so much for ourselves. All in the name of safety we may not fix our own plumbing, or do any electrical work in our homes, or allow our children to put up a swing in the tree outside the boundary of our own place. Nor is it considered wise to let them play in the park after school, nor walk unescorted anywhere if they are under the age of 13. A proportion of our population has a strong sense of entitlement that is not helpful for them or the rest of us. However I do quite a lot of volunteer work and the biggest group of volunteers are Gen Ys – those in their late teens to early 30s.

I’ve been through a financial SHTF scenario and it wasn’t pleasant though we were fortunate not to have riots in the streets and gun crime was almost unknown. We lost everything, including the health of three family members. But we could start again and did so. I too am positive. I think we will come out of the coming problems. Our issues will be to manage the various strictures and coming changes with flexibility and grace.

So yes, I think it is really important to become even more prepared than we are already. Yes to the canning (here we call it bottling). Yes to learning how to make bacon and preserve meats. Yes to learning how to manage with less and intermittent power. Yes to increasing our skill sets – for work, for employment, for business, for building, for homemaking, for health and first aid.

December 2, 2012 at 5:17 pm

Wyzyrd –

I love polyester fleece and your right – you can buy several of them for not too much money. I like the idea of sewing them together – often the ones I have bought will not cover my big, muscular body very well.

Good one.


  • MsKYprepper says:

December 5, 2012 at 3:01 pm

Bev, You are so sweet. Thanks. You made me smile.

YouTube is a virtual training playground. If you search YouTube for “prep” or something similiar you won’t turn on TV for 6 months, watching videos instead. After a while you begin to notice the people who post videos that you trust and respect. SUBSCRIBE to their channel then bask in their wisdom. Get about 30 or so channels that you have subscribed to and you’ll never have to watch another Oprah-rerun in your life. For anyone just starting out, I suggest searching for Southernprepper1 for many thought provoking ideas. I aim to set up my backyard to be just like LDSprepper. I made my BugOut Bag after watching TheUrbanPrepper. and I’ve included a few home security aspects thanks to Survive2Day. I’ve never posted videos, I’m still learning from everyone else. But I have more confidence trying something new after I’ve watched someone else do it. Go check them out …and don’t forget the popcorn!

  1. Wyzyrd says:

December 5, 2012 at 5:05 pm

Well, I haven’t got a solar setup yet, but this YouTube entry led me back to good ol’ Harbor Freight. (

Video Link:
Setting up 3 of the HF 45Watt solar kits together.

Checking the “related Videos” on the right sidebar can also lead to interesting new finds.

Harbor Freight will send you a sales brochure every week or so, but then again every couple months or so they have a “60% Off Weekend” and a solar kit comes down well below $150. They also sell deep-cycle marine batteries. As with most places, some junk, some good quality, but a lot of ‘unique’ items. I found a pike-back “fireman’s” axe there for (I think) $15, that sits behind my bedroom door in case I need to exit quickly in an ‘unconventional manner”. Every 6 months or so, they seem to get in a shipment of (unseasoned) 6qt tripod leg cast-iron Dutch Ovens with lids for about 30 bucks, as opposed to 60-70. (BTW, I don’t work for them, or make any money from them, just a 20+ year customer)

As to comments, probably the simplest thing to do would be to just cut and paste them into a weekly “Favorites” post. There is probably a WordPress plugin to let you just flag them and auto-extract weekly, but I know next-to-nothing about the Blogger platform. Sorry I’m not more geeky help there

OOOOPPS.. noticed that SP is a WordPress blog – I’ll check this evening …


Bev–I’m sure I didn’t get everything in here, but the fun is in going back and reading the dialogue. I hope this intrigues you enough to look back into the comments (Check out anything that goes over 10 comments!) and brings you a smile at the sharing of it all!



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