“Wyrd biõ ful ãræd.”

Sunday, November 9, 2014

On Stand by.

  

I'm not doing a lot right now.  Friday, it never got above forty degrees up here on the mountain top. I went out to feed the animals and put out water, but for the most part I stayed inside where it was warm.


Although this is an older picture, you can see that this particular store room is hard to work in. It's filled to the gunnels with pails, boxes, and storage tubs. 

Part of today I worked in this storeroom, making sure that what was on the inventory list was in fact physically there. It doesn't do you any good to have supplies and equipment if you can't lay hands on them when you need them. My problem in this area is worsened by the fact that I "combat load" my supplies. That means I put quantities of the same item in different buildings, on the theory that if I lose a building to fire I won't lose all of one item or commodity.  I also try to store everything where I can reach it without moving a lot of other items. I learned how to do this as an embarkation officer, which was one of my secondary military occupational specialties. When my outfit was going to deploy, I'd go up to Norfolk and with embarkation officers from other units, and my Gator Navy counterparts, we'd use little ship templates and vehicle templates to load the ships. It's surprising, these many years later, how often my military time has stood me in good stead.


The mountains have cleared out now. The tourists have gone, and so have the "half way backs." These are folks who live here half the year and in Florida half the year. They miss the leaf season and cooler air, so they go half way back to where they came from, and that's just about here.  I like the mountains best when they are largely empty.


This is our Victorian era kitchen stove. It's fully functional, a wood burner based on one of the most popular kitchen stoves of the 1890's.  My wife always uses it for a Christmas display, which is fine as we rarely actually fire it up.

We have cooked on it though. If we ever lose the propane range and oven, we can do quite nicely with this one. 

My wife's mom did a lot of cooking on a wood burning stove when they were all in Nigeria and Niger , out in the bush at their missionary stations. So my mother in law was a huge help when we started working with this. I also bought the book "Wood Stove Cooking" which is worth it's weight in pre sixties silver dimes.







These are Mausers and Mosin Nagants on the wall in the living room.  The ammo in the bandoleer is obviously 7.62X54R, because I have a lot of it and I plan to grab a Mosin Nagant off the wall if I really need a rifle.



 In my quadrant of the county, there's an old Air Force guy, older than me, who has cut a landing field out in a cove. He flies his little home made aircraft in and out of it.

I always shudder if I happen to be passing by and see him taking off or landing. There are high trees at both ends of the landing strip, and trees on either side. You couldn't pay me to try to take off from it in a fixed wing aircraft. But the guy always seems to get above the trees.





Living in our house is like living on a World War II U-boat.  Every inch of usable storage space has something packed into it.

We keep things neat and orderly, but there isn't a lot of unused room, even in the main house. This is our pantry. It has two deep freezers, and one whole wall of shelves for canned goods, with more shelves higher up.

There's also a big closet just across from the pantry door, and it's full of rice, beans, spices, cooking supplies, olive oil, and the like.

Better to have it , and not need it, than to need it and not have it.




This stream is just downslope of my house.  It originates way back in the national forest, so there are no people up there to throw trash into it, or motor oil, or other things.  It's one of my alternate water sources and it is nice to sit out on the porch and listen to it running at night.



Never hurts to have a good fieldstone fireplace. The fire heats the rocks, and they radiate heat out into the room.

When I took this the center picture was a bit ajar, but I'm not picky. 

As you can tell from the rambling nature of this post, I'm just waiting to see what happens with the weather, and what comes up that I need to take care of. I think I have everything squared away, but I am sure that something will break, blow away, freeze up, or just plain not work. 

I'll deal with that when it happens.


This week could be rough weather wise, as the NBC weather forecast video below indicates:





39 comments:

  1. Nice setup, a prepper's dream. I surprised that you don't have a Enfield Rifle Musket under the picture of Generals Lee and Jackson

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    1. Tim, I think you sent me an email once, but it came as one of those little things under the "bell" symbol and there was no message. Is that part of the circle thing? Any help you can give me on how that works would be appreciated .

      I have a Hawkin plains rifle (replica) but that's the only black powder gun I own except the Army Colt in the picture. The rifle is a Turkish Model 1888 commission rifle modified in the 1930's to take 8mm Mauser, so it's close!
      :-)

      My great, great grandfather was in the 54th Georgia infantry throughout the entire war, from Sumter to Appomattox. My brother was a Confederate reenactor for many years, til he got too old.

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    2. I had two great, great grandfathers in the Civil War one in the 1st Rhode Island Light Artillery and the other was in the Marines (north). I was trying to send you and email with the "Google circle" but failed. If your game shoot me an email trmccann(at)cox.net

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  2. Mighty fine homestead. Well organized.

    Our wood cookstove is our main cooking stove, and primary heat source. Spent the money to get a modern airtight stove and it was worth it. Coffee's perking on it right now.

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    1. We have a General Electric propane powered range and I like it because I can get up in the morning and make coffee instantly, it's just convenient. But in a long "problem time" I would eventually run out of propane, though I keep a lot of it stored, and then we'd be using the kitchen stove for heat and cooking, and the downstairs stove , with the living room fireplace, for heat. Backups to backups......

      I've been here since 1986 so I have had a long time to fine tune this place. still have a terrible time keeping it up though. As a boat aficionado I'm sure you know what it's like trying to maintain something made out of wood.

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  3. Thanks for the tour. You have a nice, well-stocked home in a beautiful area of the country.

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    1. Georges, it's nice here but I find myself wishing I lived at the beach a lot of the time. I guess there are people who are never satisfied. I've been doing this lifestyle a long time and now I just have to fine tune and maintain.

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  4. A runway of my own like that one is my ultimate dream. Granted, there's a few more trees there than I care to see but in that Zenith CH701 it really is not an issue. Its perfect for that sort of environment. That thing stalls at 30mph and cruises about 80 at full-tilt-boogie. Take-off run in that thing is usually not more that 100 ft. One of the most popular home-builts on the market.
    http://www.zenithair.com/stolch701/index1.html
    this video shows how slow and maneuverable that thing can be.
    http://youtu.be/DbBb_IuT1_o

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    1. He's got a nice setup. He has a big hanger across the road at his house, and he just taxi's across the road and down to his strip. The plane is tiny, I've pulled over and watched him take off and land, the engine sounds like a lawn mower. He's an old Air Force pilot, and I'm pretty sure, from some comments he made when he was talking to me at a gas station once, that he's one of those guys who flew the A1 Skyraider in Viet Nam. It would be ironic if he gets his by crashing into trees in a home built, but he's one of those guys who is going to do what he wants to do and the possible consequences are of no interest to him.

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  5. Hey Harry,


    (captaincrunch)

    Mosins! Mosins! and more Mosins!

    Nothin' like a good Mosin:)

    I should hang mine up on the wall also.

    I saw an old movie called Nicholas and something (forgot the czars wife's name) "Nicholas and whats her face"
    I guess it starts about 1900 and went through 1917. I only watched part of it and it also had 'Stalin, Lenin and Trotsky'
    I did see them (Russian soldiers) use 'Dragoon rifles' on civilians. I gotta check what the Dragoon's looked like again. The ones in the movie had the bayonets hanging off on the right side of the barrel when fixed (I don't know if that was correct)
    I know this sounds nuts Harry, but what about keeping one Mosin with the bayonet fixed as a "Bear Sticker" in case you actually had a worse case (up close and personal) confrontation with a Bear.

    by the way, check your e-mail in the next few days. I got some info for you.

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  6. I think it was Alexandra.

    The M44 has a permanently mounted bayonet. Putting a bayonet on the Model 1891/30 makes it so long it's unwieldy.

    I'll check the email. The standard Russian "screw driver" style bayonet is a socket bayonet that locks over the muzzle with a spring. It does sit off to one side.

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    1. hey CC and Harry - it was Alexandra. and Nicholas called her Alex. if either of you are interested, i have a gorgeous - absolutely gorgeous book of all of their love letters to each other. they wrote in their diaries every day, they wrote letters to family and friends every day and they wrote to each other every day. when you read this book you get a whole new appreciation for what they went through as a family but i have always had a love affair with them so you might not be interested. but reading those letters sure puts a different spin on the whole revolution.

      anyway, we had bayonets that fixed onto our FNC1's that sat straight off the end of the barrel...not sure i have ever seen your screw driver style. just fyi because i love talking to both of you about a pile of stuff. much love guys...much, much love! xoxox

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    2. Hey Kymber,

      (captaincrunch)

      yeah' your right as usual. It was Nick and Alex that were shacking up in a Saint Petersburg mansion and ran Russia into the ground.

      I don't get into love letters. My idea of a love letter is leaving a note with some cash for whatever girlfriend I have at the moment to get meatloaf and a six pack at Walmart and for her to get a pack of smokes and a bottle of Boones Farm wine for herself.

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    3. I always felt badly about the Russian Imperial family. They weren't bad people and it was sheer bloodymindedness to murder them. But the Bolsheviks were as murderous as they come. I would have joined the White Russians (and lost) if I'd been alive then. You are a romantic at heart Kymber, which I think is a good thing.

      CC, with such openhandedness and sauvia fare towards the ladies I am sure you will find miss right. : )

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  7. I always enjoy a tour of your place. I generally see something in the way you do things that helps with my little set-up here. I look at all you have stored and think that my efforts are inadequate. Then my landlord stops by and remarks on how well prepared I am for the storm headed our way tomorrow. He tells me about stopping at the grocery on his way here, and how crowded the store was and how bread and milk are flying off the shelves. Guess it is all relative.

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    1. I know enough about your set up to know you are in pretty good shape, Vicki. I also know you have skills in food preservation I lack completely. We all have strengths and weaknesses. I think that is why J.W. Rawles has been so successful with his redoubt concept. A community of survivalists would pool the positives of the overall community and redress individual shortcomings.

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  8. It's always nice to get a peek at someone else's preps. You've done very well for you and your family.

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    1. But only at the cost of allocating most of my time, energy, and disposable income to the project. I am getting old now and will be considerably annoyed if it turns out I'm"all dresses up and no place to go." :

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  9. Harry,

    Nice well stocked homestead there my friend.
    I love it when people leave and you have the area to yourself. Peace and quiet......no tourists :-)

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    1. I always wonder what I forgot to stash away,though.

      My wife was saying tonight that there are still a lot of the tourists in the mountains, and she gets out more than I do, but still it's more peaceful with the majority of visitors to the mountains gone.

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  10. G'day Harry,

    I have been wondering about the popularity of the Mosins in the US, is it because they are so common and relatively cheap to buy ( both rifle & Ammo)?

    They are reasonably scarce in Australia, I had a Mosin many years ago which was made in the US in 1917 for the Imperial Russian Army, alongside the original markings were what I presumed were Bolshivik stamps made after the revolution. It was a very sturdy rifle but compared to a Lee Enfield of the same vintage it was like shooting a Brown Bess Musket! I suppose I am just spoilt having learnt to shoot with the slick action of a SMLE .303.

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    1. Sgt, Enfields were once common here on the surplus market, as were Mausers of all varieties. But today the wholesale dealers have little to offer. The one big exception is the Mosin Nagant, primarily the model 1891/30, but sometimes a few model 1938 or model 1944 variants show up. The long rifle is still being imported into the U.S. in vast numbers, they are even offered to the consumer by the crate with all the ancillary equipment included at good prices. Ammo is still available by the case, in spam cans, at rock bottom prices. The rifle has become the Every Man choice for all these reasons. It's not as nice a weapon as an Enfield or a Mauser, but it's robust, reliable and available.

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  11. I am in Hot Springs At visiting with mom who has just returned home from the hospital after an extended illness. It is going to get really cold here too, having their first freeze.

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    1. I wish we had a hot springs near here. I could make good use of their restorative powers. Especially with this cold blast drawing ever nearer. I'm glad your mother is doing better.

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  12. Harry - i love it when people who are like-minded to me and jam share their ideas about preps and storage...but i especially love your sharing of your storage and ideas because you have been doing it so long. you used to be a teacher, eh? teehee. i think you are a still a teacher.

    much love to you and yours always, my friend! your friend,
    kymber

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    1. I have to guard against being a pompous old bore, though. There is always the temptation to think that because I have been doing something a specific way for many years that it must epso facto be the best way. One reason I read so many magazines oriented towards tyros is to avoid being that way.

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  13. You seem very organized, and you have an amazing stockpile. I don't have that sort of inventory, but I have a list I'm keeping that tells me what I have in each box/bucket. I write it in pencil, so that if I need to make adjustments I can. I also keep expiration dates on there too, so if something starts to get old, I can see and pull it and replace it.
    I got a new book that I really like called The Prepper's Cookbook (Pennington). It has a lot of tips for what to store, but it also has all sorts of recipes to make from pantry goods. If something did happen, it would be nice to have some different ideas of dishes to cook. Some of them I plan to give a test run - there are some that sound pretty good!
    I love your old stove. We can cook on our woodstove, but the way it is designed it only has one eye. Still - better than nothing. There's also always the grill (which has two eyes), if it's too hot to cook inside.

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    1. I am spreadsheet oriented so I use those for my records. Your system is probably more practical as it doesn't rely on technology and is an immediate update system.

      I have some cook books specifically oriented towards bulk food cooking and woodstove cooking. We used to experiment with that more often some years back but we keep in practice with it even now.

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  14. I like the pictures of Gen.s Lee and Jackson. Deo Vindice

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  15. Those were gifts from many years ago. They have the place of honor over the hearth and are among my favorite paintings. Further to the left and not in the picture are some of my wife's favorite abstract paintings. ( prints, of course)

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  16. Great tour Harry! Inspiring too. I've thought about spreading out our storage and agree that it's an excellent idea. Do stay warm.

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    1. That's something the Marine Corps invented in the 1920's and 1930's. It makes sense. I'm all ready for the cold, at least, as ready as I can be. Hope you and your animals are warm when it gets here.

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  17. I love that stove!!! We have an old wood burning stove in our house. It would be nice if it were downstairs. I thought about getting it removed when we got a new roof. My husband wanted it to stay A) For emergency purposes. B) It looks cool. C) We'd have a gap in our flooring if it were to be gone. Their is a faux brick wall in that spot of the room to. It would be odd trying to remove that.

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    1. Alissa, I'm glad you kept the stove. It can be a real asset in an emergency. If you have wood on the porch, and a wood stove, you will never be cold and you can always cook. I swear by mine.

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  18. Nope the boys didn't watch the probe landing on the comet yesterday. We should have. Mica's been really into space, and weather lately.

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    1. Science channel is running a whole new series of shows on the universe. I don't know if you get that channel, but I watched the one on Asteroids and it was good.

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  19. You sound very well prepared Harry :)

    I loved seeing inside your house, looks nice and cosy.

    xTania

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    1. It's pretty cozy, my wife sees to that. We keep everything we think we might need in some unforeseen eventuality here at the place. When we first moved here and had a big blizzard it was tough because we were not prepared. Now I think I can handle about anything except a forest fire.

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