Thursday, October 19, 2017

Fall is here.

The leaves have turned, and the temperatures are in the thirties at night, up into the high sixties during the day. The humidity has fallen off to the point that I am running a humidifier for the ferrets.

I only have two of the little guys now.   I had up to 8 at one period,  some from Cinncinati, and some from adjacent counties. I went to the Humane Society in each county around us, and in my own county, and gave them my address in case ferrets were dumped off.  People buy them without realizing they require a vast amount of care and attention. They also have very large medical bills. Sometimes, people moved and couldn't take their ferrets.

Right now, I have only Spike and Percy.  Spike came from Cincinnati, and Percy is from Chattanooga. They both live in the apartment over the shop, since Rufus the Pomeranian came to live with us.  Rufus is a nice old guy, but I don't trust him around the ferrets. It's ok though, because the ferrets like having the apartment to themselves, and it has everything a ferret's heart could desire.

I get these pictures from Art by Stef.  She let's me use her painting on the blog, and I really appreciate it. She has hundreds of good paintings of ferrets and other animals. Sometimes I go to her web page just to enjoy the paintings.

Here's a link to her site:  Art by Stef: The Ferrets


Fall is a great time to be in the mountains, especially after this coming weekend, when the tourists will start leaving in droves. By the end of the month, it will be so deserted here that you expect tumble weeds to blow down the street, even though we don't have any here.

The new Military Surplus  catalog from SG is out.  Since they jacked up the price on the buyers club membership, I don't purchase as much from them as I used to.  They still put out a good catalog though, and sometimes when they have free shipping I pick up some extra magazines , ammo, or whatever.

Emergency Essentials just sent me their Fall catalog. It's more like a magazine, really. I enjoyed going through it. Emergency Essentials  has been the place where I get hard to find items, for many years. Things like storage pail wrenches, number 10 can lids, lots of bits and pieces.  They are a good outfit and have always delivered the goods as promised.  This year, they are offering free downloads of their "preppers  guides", which deal with different related survival subjects.


Earlier this week, my wife and I went on a little shopping trip.  Not long ago, I bought a pistol I'd wanted for a long time.  I haven't bought a new gun in awhile, and I found a nice example in a pawn shop. My wife and I each have "disposable income" shares in a special account. When all the bills are paid, when everything else is satisfied, we put the "leftovers" in this account. Each of us can spend our half of it on whatever we want to, it's not budgeted.

But alas, this gun was expensive, and my portion of the "mad money" wasn't enough to buy it. So my wife "lent" me her share.  Now we have cycled through enough time for me to have paid her back. So, we have been going to her favorite towns to shop.

While we were in North Carolina, we stopped at the "scratch and dent" grocery store and while we didn't buy much, we did pick up some good bargains.

I like the Jimmy Dean breakfast bowls very much. Usually, at Walmart, they are just under $3.00 each. But they had my favorite, the Burrito breakfast bowl, for $1.00 each so I bought a bunch of those.

The store had these big deli sized cylinders of Land of Lakes Provolone cheese.  Last time we found them there, they were $10.00 each and we bought all they had.  This time, the price had gone up about 50%, but we bought the six they had anyway.  It's great cheese, and you can't beat the price.

They were selling these big glass bottles of Welch's Sparkling juice in case lots of 12 bottles, for $1.00 a bottle. I bought one case of the Cranberry and one case of the White Grape.

All of  these things will keep for a long time, either in the store room or  the deep freezer, and it's always nice to save money. It's fun to poke around in there and see what they have, because they never have the same things two visits in a row. All of these items were time expired, but my experience has been that it makes not a one whit's worth of difference in the quality.

Thought for the Day:


  1. It's always good to save a few bucks and stock the pantry.

    1. I always feel good when I can save a dollar. It's the Scotch Irish blood. I think after all these years of storing away vast quantities of anything I could possibly need, I'd have a terrible anxiety attack if I didn't keep the supply level up. It's nice to never need something and then have to run into town for, since it's a 32 mile round trip to town.

  2. Here in northern NH it's been in the low 30s at night and right now it's 70. Daytime highs like that are unusual for us.

    Haven't bought anything from SG in forever. Used to belong, but not worth it now.

    My lovely wife is taking a friend to the doctor's about fifty miles away. She's got the huge cooler in the car to do a grocery run. My daughter often drives 100 miles away to get quality food.

    1. I bought a lot of stuff from Sportsman's Guide, mostly ammo, over the last ten years or so. But then they really jacked up the price of a membership, and it just wasn't worth the money. I don't need much these days, and I'm not as worried about the possibility of the federal government cutting off supplies of ammo. The big advantage they used to have over places like Midway was the free shipping, but now they don't have that except occasionally. I hate paying shipping. I was about to order a can of 300 rounds of .40 S&W this morning from Midway, but when I filled out the on line order, the shipping would have made it more expensive than just buying the same ammo at Walmart, so I cancelled the order.

      We keep a big cooler in our Jeep, I guess that's standard equipment for country people. Like your family, we always take advantage of a trip to town. Usually, we go to the grocery store, Walmart, the Humane Society thrift shop, the park, the library and the post office every time we go to town. We try to have lunch in town too. Makes it more fun and maximizes what you accomplish in exchange for the gas you had to use.

      We like Publix and Kroeger grocery stores a lot, but the nearest are in Gainesville, Ga, which is about the same distance as your daughter drives. Also, Gainesville is a completely Mexican town now, with the store sign in Spanish, so we don't go there very often anymore.

  3. I'm so glad it finally cooled down!
    Your ferrets always sound like they are big on personality.

    I like the BBC Survivors okay but one thing that drives me nuts about is that it's been weeks since the collapse and half of them are still running around in designer clothes and look spotless with perfect hair and not a speck of dirt. Not exactly realistic.

    1. It's really nice here now. I was getting worn down by the heat and humidity after the storms. And, it's expensive to run all that air conditioning and the dehumidifiers in the house and the outbuildings. Right now, I am just running one humidifier in the apartment to keep the humidity in the low 50's. The ferrets skin will dry out and they get itchy below 50% humidity.

      The British have different attitudes about a lot of things and that was the most noticeable aspect of the series for me. Also, the fact that at the start you always heard dogs barking in town, and then they slowly died out as no one fed them or gave them water, and it got silent. That was a creepy touch. There were a lot of things about the show that weren't realistic, and it was very, very politically correct which was irksome. Still though, it was a good show and they should have done a third season and finished the story line out. Just leaving it hanging at the end of the second season was aggravating.

  4. We've been stocking the pantry with garden canned goods. We have so many tomatoes! There are tons of pickles too! I save the tomato juice in ice cubes for soups.

    The cartoon of Trump misspelling something on twitter made me giggle.

    1. Canned goods are the second most numerous items in my long term storage. I have a lot of food stored in vacuem packed mylar bags, in pails, too.

      Tomatoes are great, they can be used to make so many different things. I like dill pickles and my wife likes sweet pickles. Since we don't have a garden some years, and our garden doesn't do too well when we do have one, we buy those giant jars of pickles.

      Branco has some really good cartoons. I like the guy, never met him but he seems to have a good personality and be of the right persuasion.

  5. A Yankee and a Southern Ferret. Hope they are getting along OK. --Troy

    1. They do. Unlike us, ferrets don't fuss themselves over politics. ;-). Spike is very old, and Percy is a young ferret, so sometimes Spike gets annoyed when Percy wants to play, but they get along well.

  6. Since we gave our small freezer to a neighbor before we moved, we'll be looking to get a new "regular size" chest freezer as soon as we move in to the new (for us) house.

    There are so many "grown local" farm stands around here my wife is even talking about canning and preserving. Quite a change for a 'city gal'.

    And I drove into Fort Collins today to visit a little hole-in-the-wall electronics place because I needed an adapter and 'wall wart' power supply for my scanner.

    The aspen trees are all bright yellow now, the maples are red, and fall is definitely in the air!

    It's just sooooo peaceful and relaxing compared to the hell-hole that Southern California has become.

    We're both very happy we made the move!

    1. Dr. Jim, you worked hard to get a better situation in life, and I know it was difficult to give up your friends there in California, and have to abandon so much of your possessions. But it sure does seem like it was worthwhile. All that worry and aggravation and hard work has paid off.

      I think about making a move again sometimes, but I think it's more that I feel like if I don't do it soon, I will just be too old. Then I ask myself if I could really ever find a place I liked more. I'm sure I would like to live on the beach again, but not so much in an apartment. Don't know what I will do in the end.

      I'm glad things have worked out. When I finish up answering comments here in a minute I will go over to your place and get more details on developments.

  7. It is good to see the two of you so relaxed-just enjoying the beautiful weather, shopping and each other. I hope you have a long autumn. Jana

    1. Jana, things are going well for us right now. Nobody is sick, there are no storms coming, the weather is great. The kids are doing well and there are no big traumas with their jobs.

      I hope everything is going well for you out there. Have you given any thought to starting your own blog. I'm sure you would enjoy it and I'd like to read it. I admit to a selfish motive, I can keep in touch with friends better when they have a blog I can comment on. :-)

  8. Ok so what's the pistol don't keep us waiting. :)


    1. I was a little anxious about touting what I bought, least people think I was bragging.

      I found a nice Luger in a pawn shop, and I bought it. I don't usually plunk down that kind of money, and God knows I don't need more guns. But I have always wanted a Luger. I bought one of the Mitchell Arms stainless steel Lugers, and it is really nice, but it wasn't the same.

      Mine is not one of the rare ones, I'm pretty sure it's one of those former East German police guns that Southern Ohio Guns brought into the country about 15 years ago. But it's a nice gun and it's mine.

  9. I'm sure I can't be the only one wondering what the new pistol is. Given your collection of military 'surplus' handguns, Im guessing whatever you got was a non-military gun like a revolver or something. It's cool if you'd rather not say, but maybe at least a little tease with the caliber?

    1. Zero, I was afraid it would sound like I was bragging. I bought a nice Luger. I could never bring myself to pay the price they command, but I am getting on and I knew if I didn't get one soon, I never would. Now I just have to get the MP-40, and I have decided that the 9mm new production semi-auto version will be close enough for me.

    2. Hey, congrats! Its my understanding that the luger prefers ammo hotter than what the US factories usually load, so plan accordingly. Can you tell more about it? Is it commercial? military? .30 or 9mm?

      I remember a time when outfits like SOG and J&G Sales had Lugers for reasonable prices. Nowadays...everything is spendy. But, it'll be even more expensive later.

      Nothing wrong with sharing your latest acquisition with your readership, in my opinion. If we've stuck around this long it's pretty likely we're gonna be happy for you that you got something you always wanted rather than interpret the news as bragging.

      ANd, heck, nothing wrong with bragging, either.

      Again, congrats..I hope you have a good time with it!!

    3. It has been suggested that I have a tendency to "prattle on" about guns. I'm told the people who like guns already know anything I might say about them, and the one's who don't just skip over that part. I've also been accused of hubris, and lack of sensitivity to those who have not been as fortunate in retirement as I have. So I am trying to be low key. Also, it's not a great idea to say too much about guns you buy in pawnshops, as they lack provenance.

      This gun is a 9mm, non-matching parts pistol, in NRA very good condition, the standard WW2 version. I really hadn't meant to buy any more guns, as my wife pointed out, I can't remember the one's I have. But, I didn't have a real luger. The Stainless Mitchell is a perfect reproduction, but part of the allure of old guns for me is the connection to the past. I did pay a premium for this pistol, but the price was based on a standard reference and sometimes you just have to pay top dollar if you want something.

      I remember well when SOG brought some Lugers in, and I should have bought one then, a good East German refurbished gun ran about $500.00

      My Mitchell Luger fires everything but UMC fine. I'll have to see what the real deal likes.

      At long last, I have one. Now if I get my MP-40 clone, I will feel like I've got everything I want.

    4. I got to handle the ATI semi-auto MP40 "pistol" today. ( ) I think it might be just what youre looking for. One of those guns that you buy simply because you want it.

    5. That's the one. I have all sorts of videos from the Shot Show on it. The only thing that I don't like is that they didn't put the folding stock on the gun. I wouldn't have minded if they put it on there but in a manner that it couldn't be extended. There is a gun coming out soon with the folding stock, but that's the one where you have to have the ATF tax stamp and paperwork for the short barrel. Some days, I say I am just going to get the gun without the stock, other days I think that's a half way measure and I hate those. You are sure right though, nobody mortal can afford an original MP40. The nice German gun in .22LR is spoiled by a fake suppressor to make ATF happy. The ATI gun is the closest you can come. I am so desperate to own one, I even thought about buying the air gun version that shoots bb's, but looks like the real thing. Seemed kind of pointless to spend so much for so little though.

  10. Life IS good Harry! :) I love Stef's artwork, very beautiful! I didn't know that ferrets had high medical bills. It's like all other types of "exotic" type of animals...for lack of a better all of the little chicks and rabbits who are abandoned a few months after Easter. People are so shallow, it's good to know you help out the ferrets. I personally don't think I could. When I was much younger, my first bf had a ferret but he didn't take care of him at all. His apartment smelled like urine and that ferret did its best to bite my ankles every time I went over there.

    1. Rain, ferrets are prone to a number of different diseases, the worst is adrenal disease. They have to have "exotic pet specialists" because regular vets don't know anything about them.

      Ferrets have tremendous personalities, are joyful creatures, and they establish a very strong link with the people who keep them. They are entirely helpless in the wild, and anyone who dumps one off by the road is dooming it to a bad death. A few years back, in Chicago, some people saw a pair of ferrets loose near a picnic grounds. When they got home, they told a friend who was a ferret person, and she knew they had been abandoned.

      She turned out her local ferret community, and over 400 people searched the park. On the third day, a teenage girl with a squeaky toy found the ferrets, and they were rescued. When they were taken to the vet, it turned out they were both ill, needed long term medical treatment, and that was why they had been abandoned in all probability. They were adopted and got the treatment they needed. But it does highlight the bad side of people who solve their animal responsibilities by dumping off animals or letting them die of neglect. On the other hand, it shows the good side of people in that so many would search the woods for so long to help the ferrets.

      Believe it or not, "nipping" is a ferret behavior associated with playing. If that guy wasn't giving his ferret the proper care, he probably wasn't playing with it either and they need that interaction very much. Ferrets are colony animals and when one lives alone he is often lonely unless the people play with the ferret a good bit.

      You'd be good with ferrets, Rain. They can tell good people when they see them. But I think right now you are about maxed out on animal friends! ;-)

    2. That story of the people searching for the ferrets made my heart happy. :) I do like ferrets, their faces remind me of little bears. They're adorable. You know, I always thought my life's work would involve animals and helping them. I guess I'm off to a good start!!

      We suspect that's why our Jack was abandoned. Not medical but he had fear aggression, which is usually a cause of treatment I can't bear to imagine happening to an innocent animal. He was 52 pounds when we got him and in very bad health. He was also terrified of men. It took us a year to get him to half his weight, get him healthy again and now he can't stand it when Alex isn't cuddling him. People take in pets, usually with good intentions, but they have no clue what kind of responsibility it takes.

      Maxed out? Well....if there was a little cute dog that needed me...oh gosh, I should be careful what I wish for lol!!! :)

    3. Ferrets are related to raccoons, someone once told me. They do look like little bears , now that you mention it. There's a person who has a pet weasel called Ozzy, and puts videos of Ozzy doing funny things on youtube. I have never seen weasels for sale, so I don't know where he or she got Ozzy. The owner says weasels are a lot harder to take care of though, than ferrets, so I guess I will stick to ferrets!

      We have troubles here with dog fighting. It's illegal, but the responsibility for suppressing it rests with the local Sheriffs. Some of them do keep the lid on that disgusting sport, but others take payoffs to look the other way.

      You have a lot in common with my daughter. E always comes to the rescue, no matter what. Then many of the animals she rescues wind up coming here to the mountain. We have lots of room though, so it works out.

      One of my ferrets got out one day, and I searched all the woods around the house. Nothing. After dark, I went out again and just as I was about to give up, I caught his eyes shining in the dark from under a log. That's the only time one of mine have gotten away. When I was younger, I used to let them out into the meadow, one or two at a time, and if they tried to run into the woods, I could catch them. But now, being older and less spry, if I let them out it's one at a time and I make them wear their harness with a leash.

  11. Harry,

    Sounds to me like it's time to break out the winter coats!
    Beautiful pictures!!! Always snatch up items when they're a deal when it comes to food prep, guns, ammo, first aid....ect... Those were some good deals!!!

    1. Sandy, you are so right about "he who hesitates is lost." I wish I had a nickel for every time I didn't buy something, then went back to buy it after pondering it, but it was gone.

      We buy a lot of things at that scratch and dint grocery store. Even if I get something I don't like, the dogs will eat it so it's not wasted.

      It's a beautiful day here today. Wind blowing, leaves coming down. I spent all morning working outside but now I am going to just relax the rest of the day.

  12. Looking good Harry :-)
    2 things to note:
    - Watch the sparkling juice long term; I've had bottles stored in climate control for 2 or 3 years turn nasty. I was surprised by it, but it is a warning that not everything lasts even in glass.
    - I'm glad to hear that you have had good experiences with Emergency Essentials. I have always found their communication lacking. My last order from them came damaged and they danced all around claiming it would still be fine and ended up refusing to do anything about it, so I'm not buying from them anymore. I've found that SafeCastle is very competitive and is better at answering their phone to, so I've moved to using them for what I need.

    1. Jonathan, well, that's not good. I bought 24 bottles of the stuff. I haven't opened any of it, but I will put a bottle of each flavor in the refrigerator to get cold and test it out. I'm going to be aggravated if it's gone off. Or, I will just drink it anyway! I can't stand to waste stuff, and the dogs usually eat anything we don't want but I don't think they will drink sparkling apple juice. ;-)

      I'm really surprised to hear that emergency essentials didn't do you right. I've always done well with them. I know one time I recommended a company to a friend, and she placed an order with them but they didn't do her right. I called them and they said they would fix it, but she was so outdone she said she wasn't going to buy anything from them again. I wrote the owner and told them that they had lost a good customer and made me look bad, and I never bought anything from them again.

      You want me to touch base with Emergency Essentials? I'll be glad to see if I can help. Just give me the particulars.


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