This past couple of weeks we geared up for a trial run “just in case”…and found some areas we needed to shore up.
After my first husband passed, a friend who quilts, took all of his dress shirts and made me a beautiful biscuit quilt and then two small throw quilts. When MrWE2 and I took our 11 day Thanksgiving trip to the Texas coast and back, we seldom used the furnace in the travel trailer, just wore our insulated underwear and climbed under a thermal blanket with the quilt on top and was warm as toast!
My sis also made us a beautiful “wedding” quilt with pillow shams…no stuffing, just stitched in various patterns. Thin but very heavy :-) You can also crochet/knit blankets and place them between a fleece blanket etc., and they are extremely warming.
Finished getting blankets and fleece throws washed up last night & folded. Wanted to have them ready if we need them to keep warmer than what we are. May need to turn down the temp if heating bills get too high with a colder winter being forecast :-)
Also noticed we could use more vinegar so I need to pick up more (I buy the small bottles because once it’s opened it may lose some of its strength.
Also noticed with all this gearing up, that we could use more liquid bleach. I have some of the bleach tablets stored but want more of the liquid. For the liquid I also buy the smaller jugs of the concentrated strength Clorox for storage. The liquid has a shorter shelf life and perhaps the smaller jugs of the concentrated strength will prevent me from losing a gallon if one should go bad. I buy the gallon jugs for daily use now.
Gearing up for “trial runs” is good…lets me test the soundness of not only the pantry but other areas also. Also want to pick up a few more rolls of the silver insulated bubble wrap and some of the 4×8 sheets of foam board. MrWE2 wants to be able to build a “warm room” inside our bedroom and the pantry room at the Roost if we needed to have a warm place. The 4×8 sheets would allow him to quickly put it together with tape etc., and still be easily taken down and not damaged too much.
You’ve probably read it here or somewhere, and I’m sure we’re not the only ones to make use of them, but at your local Dollar Tree stores you can buy the tall religious (?) candles that burn for many hours for $1. We stocked up on them big time. Not long ago our power went out and we were able to give a couple to our neighbors who had a small boy who was afraid because of all the darkness.
We also bought lots and lots of T-lights and votive candles (and still do) every time we catch them on sale. You can put one in the bottom of a canning jar and they give off a pretty good light, and not nearly as hazardous for dripping wax. On the votive type candles, when they burn down I just pull out the wick, set the jar aside to cool, and then place the next candle right on top. Why? Never know when I might need some wax to seal something :-)
We also stocked up on a lot of LED lights including the solar stick-in lights.
We have a small amount of meats from Honeyville that I used some to make up my meals in a bag. We don’t store MRE type foods from other manufacturers. Last year I canned up quit a bit of my own meats when I caught them on sale. They taste soooo much better!
As for the bacon, Yoder’s is WAY too expensive for us. I follow the method of just sticking my raw bacon into my canning jars and canning it according to altitude etc., and when I need it, open the jar, put it in a skillet and fry it myself :-) I can buy lots of bacon for what I’d pay for one small tin of Yoder’s :-)
The one thing I do always keep an eye open for is shelf stable milk when it’s on sale. I also store canned evaporated milk. May not tase like “store bought gallons” but if in a crisis, you’ll be mighty glad to have not only lots of Nido powdered milk, Sanalac powdered milk, but some shelf stable that’s already got the water added.
Anything I can store that I DO NOT have to add water to is a good deal for us. Water is a life saver as is our fuel sources, and I don’t want to have to use it up trying to cook (especially rice & beans) … not to mention the length of time I have to use my fuel source.
Even though we do have a lot of bulk rice, oats, corn, wheat stored, we also stock a lot of instant rice. Perhaps not nutritious by itself but quick to cook. Stick it in a canning jar add some dehydrated veggies, some boiling water, put the lid on and set it aside for a later meal. Same with oats, corn mush, ground wheat etc. I have a solar oven and it’s wonderful too, but you’d be surprised how quickly the sun can heat up a canning jar with food inside it :-)
Just wanted to share some of the things we found we wanted to shore up on, when gearing up :)
Originally posted by the WE2’s
Thanks for the link to the video on canning bacon. I have a few cans of Yoder’s that I got for $9 each once, but it’s too expensive for us as well. I’ve found bacon in the bulk boxes for as little as $1.50/pound, but always stock up when it drops to $3.00 or less a pound.
I find myself preparing for winter, too, but we don’t even get our first hard freeze until the week of Thanksgiving, usually. We began insulating the water lines at the new water tanks this week and made good progress. And I only wore long underwear one week last year. I’m a sissy when it comes to cold.
Thanks for your thoughts and ideas.
Looks like a good buy on the sealer bag roll! I ordered one to try. Thanks for the info Rourke!
Thanks for the ideas and motivation. Today I went to see where my oldest grandchild is living in an apartment on the campus of a college in Mpls. She will turn 19 next month. I brought her a bug out bag. 2 years ago I made she and her brother and my son sit down and watch John Paul Jackson you tube update on preparing for the perfect storm. An hour and 31 minutes. I fed them treats the whole time. :) Although her life now is so very far from Godly living and any sense of preparedness she was awed I would think of her. Even the liberal youth know things are bad. It was only a cheap backpack with minimal inside: 3 sport bottle water bottles, 5 power bars, a jar of peanuts, small Led flashlight with 2 extra sets of batterirs, some tea lights and a hanging holder. Told her there was space to add things that she could think of if she had to take off to get to her dad’s on a crisis but this would be the essentials. She took it without hesitation and set it in the middle of her closet shelf in the front. We do what we can where we can for those we love.
Way To Go, GrammaMary :) Every little bit of teaching helps. Kudos :)
Those small lessons teach better than trying to drop a whole “library” on them all at once. To misquote the late, great Levon Helm, they’ll “take what they need and leave the rest”. Just having your granddaughter realize that the bag could save her butt in an emergency is a Victory to be celebrated.
My kids don’t “sit on the same aisle in church” as me, but they’re adults. Their choices, not mine. We had an ‘unfortunate advantage’ back in 2001. I lost my job and house after the ‘dotcom crash’ and lived in a van and 2 tents in a remote campground. They spent every other weekend and about half the summer with me for 7 months. They learned not to call 911 if they saw a knife or a hatchet or a gun, and how to use them safely. They learned that if you can’t start a fire, dinner ain’t coming.
I don’t recommend this, but they do have survival gear in their vehicles. Start small :)
Very informative . I will try this. I love this site because it’s usually has something I can relate to,
Guess what three things we also found lacking … manual can openers, bottle cap removers and matches! Believe it or not … we had put all our matches in 5-gallon buckets sealed tight :-) And the rule of 1 is none, 2 is one and 3 is two? We couldn’t find the openers! But, we now have the three rule thanks to $Tree :-)