Saturday, May 21, 2016

News you can use.

No walk at the lake today. It started raining last night, and it's like the Amazon jungle out there this morning.  Temperature is 72, not bad, but the humidity is 98%. Low clouds have covered the mountain tops so we are in low visibility conditions until that burns off.

We were planning on a trip to the farmers market today, but unless we start to go stir crazy I think we will just stay on the mountain top.
I have a lot of little things I've been wanting to put on the blog. This would be a good morning to catch all that up. None of them rate a post in and of themselves, but taken together someone might find something they can use.

M and I have been pretty good about walking our mile a day this week.

The little lake is only five minutes away by vehicle if you go through the mountains on the forest service roads.

It's easy to just run over there. Since it's part of a Georgia state park, I can legally carry my pistol. I use a shoulder holster and keep it concealed under a vest. More and more, I am seeing people just "open carry."  Saw a guy in a store yesterday with a monstrous fighting knife on one hip and a big black "plastic fantastic" on the other. Didn't recognize the pistol but it may have been one of the new Turkish Sig P226 knockoffs that are so popular right now.

Of course, we here in Georgia don't hold a candle to Texas in this regard!

You have to be a little careful around the lake.  We have seen some big rattlesnakes and copperheads along the trails.

At the end of the lake, near the dam, there's a log in the water. Under that log lives the biggest water moccasin I have ever seen. For years I told people there were no moccasins up here, but I was wrong.  You can't shoot snakes in the park, so when we sit on the bench down there to rest, we often see him on his log. He's at the bottom of the lake side and we are up on top, or we would never stop there at all.

Cooking with home storage

This week, on a rainy day, we made oatmeal cookies. That is, I hauled the buckets of things my wife needed from the third level store room, and she got the ingredients she needed from them.

Almost everything we used dates back to the summer of 1999, and has been in storage since then.

We have had some cornmeal and powdered milk go "bad" in the past but nothing else I can remember. And even the corn meal and powdered milk, we used to make biscuits for the dogs. They liked them.  The definition of "bad" depends on the person. And even if something does seem "off" and we don't want to eat it, some type of animal here will relish the food .

We used rolled oats, maple sugar, flour, salt, and evaporated milk for the cookies. The evaporated milk just came off the shelf and wasn't from food storage. We are using our own eggs to cook now, as well.  I never liked to because the chickens eat dead stuff they find in the meadow, but my wife pointed out they are grain fed and it's not very smart to be buying eggs when we are feeding the dogs and cats so many eggs they are sick of them.  Also, I read on someone's blog that it can be forty days between an egg being laid at a commercial farm and it being in the egg cooler at the grocery store. My wife says that if so, the company must be putting the eggs in cooler storage but the very idea put me off.

The store room on the third level is pretty well stuffed with these pails from 1999.

They contain mylar bags of food supplies, which were flushed with nitrogen to kill any little buggies in there, and then sealed in the pails.

I wish I could remember what all is in there. Basically: flour, red wheat, white wheat, powdered milk, corn meal, sugar, every kind of dried vegetable you can think of (the Mormon food storage computer chose the vegetables), dried fruit. There are a lot of spices , soup mix, stew mix, pudding mix.  Powdered cheese and butter for cooking.

The rows are two deep and three or four pails high. Each row is about 30 feet long, and there are three rows.

Then there's one wall of shelves that are  for number 10 cans.

The number ten cans contain chicken noodle soup mix, powdered eggs, maple sugar, baking soda, baking powder, more dried fruit, more stew mix, and drink mix powders, among other things.

I've picked up a lot of number ten cans of vegetables at different grocery stores. Almost every grocery store here has a section of number ten cans and what you can get changes daily.  With just the two of us, I admit a lot of the contents in the number tens we open go to the chickens and dogs when we get sick of eating peas or whatever, But they are just right for the group size we plan on hosting in the event TEOTWAWKI materializes. Emergency Essentials sells new lids for number ten cans at reasonable prices. I find the can lids don't last long if you open them frequently, they tend to split along the edges. So a few spares is a good idea.

I don't haul these monsters up the stairs but once.  They stay down in the big store room until my wife wants one of them, then I haul it up to the kitchen.

After that, it stays in the pantry until it's used up.  That can take quite awhile, but it doesn't matter. Once all the food is eaten, the pails are still really handy to have around. They seal up so tight you have to use a special tool to open them again.

As I've said before, I've eaten canned vegetables that have been in my store room for more than ten years. I use dunage , usually 2X4 to keep the containers off the cement floor. The room is kept at 68 degrees F and 54 % humidity, and it's kept dark most of the time.  You can keep food stored a long, long time.

I had a co-worker who went through a bad divorce. She had four kids and her income fell by two thirds. I took her what ever she wanted out of the store room for about six months until she got back on her feet. She made good meals for her kids, healthy and tasty, using just those supplies and a very few things from the store. It can be done.

New Magazines

The new "Be Ready" finally got to the grocery store.  This issue is largely about fighting with long guns from a vehicle and resisting car jacking.  Car jacking is getting to be a  really  popular sport with the denizens of the inner city in Georgia. Unfortunately, a lot of drivers and their passengers are getting hurt or even killed during the process.

Here's a post from a fellow about being on the receiving end of a car jacking. "De Brudda" picked the wrong guy to mess with.  This particular individual has always struck me as a fairly ruthless person if placed in a situation that calls for it. He is also situationally aware, all the time.

Heads up

link to Langniappe's Lair.

"Get off dat tricycle, mo' fo!"

There's also a good article on antibiotics in this issue, but primarily it's about self defense, new self defense ammo, cyber attack issues, and martial arts.  Seems like the old Survivalist topics are just dropping off.

The best thing about this issue of Be Ready was the foreword by the editor, David Fortier.  If you know guns, you know him.  His introduction to the magazine summed up in about one page everything I have been trying to verbalize in the blog about our current situation. I wish I could copy it and post it, but I know it's copyrighted.  Even if you don't want to spend ten bucks on the magazine, it would be time well spent to just go to the grocery store, pick up the magazine, and  read that one page.

A freebie in the mail

I got his book in the mail this week. I didn't order it. In fact, I don't think I've ever heard of it. But they sent me a copy free.   It's not a bad book, with a lot of information on off grid power systems, and a lot of good political analysis as well.  I put the back of the little book on the blog, so if any of you want to get a copy the address is available.

An American Survival Guide Special

An interesting take off on military field manuals.

This one is all about field craft.  There are a lot of people in America and Europe who will need the skills described in this magazine, because if you live in a city or in suburbia and TSHTF, you will have to bug out.  Check out this old History Channel documentary for the reasons why.  It's easy to find on line, you can order the DVD for about 10 bucks or you can watch it on line for free.

After Armageddon

This dates back a bit, somewhere around 2004 as I remember. Back when the History Channel made good quality, well thought out documentaries and wasn't just reruns and reality show trash

It's worth your time to watch it and this YouTube link seems to be pretty good quality.

I knew a doctor once who lived in a suburb of Atlanta,in a  gated community.  Everyone who lived there was one of the "beautiful people." He thought he would be ok in TEOTWAWKI because they could all fort up and they had plenty of guns and  a fake lake.

After watching this show, he bought a retreat up in the mountains. It's nice to be rich.

To finish up. This song was sent to me by a friend. It's the God's Truth.


  1. I'm sure you and the Missus enjoyed some home bakes. That lake looks amazing :)

    Yeah - I'vs also read somewhere recently that the US power grid is going to take a knock in the near future. Hope it doesn't happen...

    1. We are cooking a lot more, and I am eating a much more healthy diet, now that she is home. Basically during the years she worked out of the county during the week, I ate out of cans for the most part. Now that she is home every day, it's much different.

      Also, thanks to her, we are gardening and trying to raise at least some of our own food. I don't mind helping with the grunt work, it's something we can do together.

      We are really fortunate in where we live. I chose this place for security, basically. But it's very beautiful and still a fairly tranquil place to live.

      I liked your post on the fertilizer. I had no idea a person could have animal waste analyzed to see how good it would be as fertilizer. You often come up with things I have never thought about, that I should have.

  2. P.S. Bless you - but I'm not surprised at your helping your co-worker with food toll she got back on her feet. I have always thought of you as a very kind, helpful soul :)

    1. She is still a good friend to my wife and I. She took some hard knocks and it was good to be able to help. I have never really understood how a fellow can walk out on his wife and kids and not help them afterwards. I know a lot of guys get rolled by the courts and have to pay a lot of alimony and such. There's a lot of bitterness over it and it's justified. But still, what kind of man would not even care if his kids had enough to eat and a place to live?

  3. Harry-thanks for the post about using the items in your food storage. I had to laugh at my s-i-l recently. He refused to eat some candy that was two months past the expiration date. I told him that I had chocolate bars vaccum sealed from 5 years ago. I recently tried one and it was good. I am impressed by your stores. I keep adding more to storage but am running out of room. Our part of the country gets very hot and humid and we rely heavily on air conditioning. I wonder what will happen to our food storage if we have no electricity to run the a/c. I guess, at that point, we will probably be using our stored food to stay alive. Love the music video-sad, but true. Jana

    1. Jana, the loss of environmental control that would come with a major power outage of long duration would be disasterous. Like you, I live in a place where it is brutally hot and humid in the summer. My store room level is under ground on two sides ( I am built into a mountain side) and it stays pretty cool. But much of my storage above ground would be at risk without air conditioning. I have two 500 gallon tanks of diesel, and good diesel generator, so I can run the air and all for a long while, until the diesel runs out. The problem is, it's very quiet up here, and that generator running can literally be heard for miles due to the mountains echoing the noise. I sure wouldn't want to put out a big audio sign saying "here I am."

      I have been at this for 30 years plus now. Ironically, one of my worries is what happens to all the buildings, food, ammo, weapons, tools, etc if I die or get senile and my son and daughter won't keep the place up? I'm getting to that age where it becomes more than academic.

      The music video pretty much said it all. Here in North Georgia, sewing plants were everywhere. They were often just little metal buildings with 30 ladies doing piece work on production, but I ran an AS-400 computer in a big one on the other side of the mountains for a couple of years as a second job. It had 400 employees, on two shifts. Then NAFTA was signed into law and all the sewing plants were wiped out almost overnight. All of them. The big plant I worked at is now just a cement slab with pipes sticking out of it by the railroad tracks.

      Thousands of women lost their jobs there and what they brought home made a huge difference in Appalachia. When I hear the politicians talking about how wonderful all these "trade agreements" are it makes me sick.

  4. Harry - i just came from Max's blog and he had a picture up of his cabin views - soooo very different from what it looks like up here! and then i come to your blog and see more amazing pictures of country i would never had seen without blogs. i have traveled all over the world but it was mostly to military bases....and they pretty much all look the same! we love our property and views but it is such a treat to see other places....personal places owned by our friends. such a treat!

    thank you for helping out that woman with so much food for her have a very big heart Harry!

    sending much love to you, as always! your friend,

    1. Kymber, Max is out in Colorado and they have spectacular views in that part of the county. Here, the forest is so dense, that even in winter unless you can get up on a ridge line above the canopy, you don't have much of a view. I can see some other mountains around my place, but to get a really long range view I have to walk up behind the shop and go up slope for a bit. Then I can sit on some granite boulders and enjoy a long range view.

      I like to look at other people's places too. I have always felt that you and J had a good location, with your own little private place on the river and then there's the beach not far away. I guess as much as they can, everyone finds a place to live that is what they really want. You can't do that much if you have urban skills and like a lot of money, unless you like the city. My kids like the city but I am damned if I know why.

      She is a good friend. She would have done the same for me. Everybody hits rough spots when they need some support of one kind or other.

  5. Harry, since we are planning to move soon, we have been dipping into our food storage a bit more (one less thing to carry out). But I was wondering why you put your plastic containers onto 2+4's?

    That song is a sad one. I was looking online for some car parts today for something not made in China. It took a long time to find it, and I paid more for it but i'm happy to support my fellow American worker. --Troy

    1. Troy, I keep everything off cement floors. I noticed in the Marines that the supply officers always kept everything from jerry cans to bales of clothing on boards laid out on the warehouse floor. When I had embarkation officer as a collateral duty, I had to do the loading plans for units going aboard ship. Same thing, they always kept the crates or mount out boxes stacked and tied down with steel tape on "dunnage." I am not sure why, but I know these guys were following procedure and it must have had a good reason. I do a lot of things in my normal routine that I could not really give a scientific reason for, I just picked up the habits in the Marine Corps and trust they have some basis in reality.

      I try to buy American when I can but sometimes I get conflicted. For instance, some of the things the auto workers unions do make me mad, because it makes our products less able to compete with Asian cars. Yet I always buy Jeeps. Like the song says though, it's hard to find a good shirt made in the US anymore, NAFTA pretty well killed that. Obama's new wonderful trade bill is another nail in the coffin of the working class, and he lied his ass off to get it buffed up and put a good shine on it. It's still poison though.

      I've known some people , who were good hard working individuals, who fell on hard times. The fact that they had to get some government money to survive never had any impact on how I felt about them. Then you get the 3rd and 4th generation blood suckers who have never worked and wouldn't if they could, and it infuriates me.

      It's damned confusing.

  6. I don't have near the food storage you do, but I believe I am at the place where my family will be able to eat for a year, should the need arise. I use from it constantly, so it is a matter of keeping track and replacing what I use and adding more every month. It is amazing how much food a person can store even in a small apartment.

    That song is spot on. Here in Minnesota there used to be all sorts of manufacturing jobs. Now - not so much. Used to be lots of building going on but that too has slowed way down. I wonder if there is any chance whatsoever in getting back to the way we were, when jobs were plentiful and folks didn't need to hold down two or three to be able to live. I really miss the 50's.

    1. Vicki, I plan for a fairly large group, although how many will actually make it here if TSHTF in some abrupt manner I don't know. I worry about the kids being able to bug out and get here, but I have provided them with a good Jeep Commander, emergency cash, food, weapons, maps, alternative routes and I'll go get them if I have to. You are lucky your family lives around you.

      I think a person could write a book on how we got where we are today. Computers wiped out a lot of jobs. Shipping jobs overseas is rampant. I hate companies where you call for technical support and you get people living in another country. Somebody made that decision because it was cheaper to use them, so more money in the annual report, more profits for the investors distributions, and that's all that matters. It just keeps getting worse, as both major parties sign off on new "trade agreements" that enrich the class of people who run the government and the nation, but impoverish the working folks.

      I don't think there's any going back. I think we will just keep going down the drain. Fewer and fewer jobs in America, while we let in hundreds of thousands of more people who will work for pennies and exacerbate the problem ten times over.

  7. Hi Harry, I haven't been hee for a while so I see a lot of new stuff. Not much for the Google+, but as long as I can locate your blog, it's OK. FYI, I do have a gorgeous old rifle and I do know how to handle a gun, except that they are all getting too heavy for me. My first husband lived in communist Hungary, as soon as he became a US citizen, he bought a collection of guns and taught me how to use them. I was a pretty good shot, actually, back in the day. I am totally unafraid living here without a gun. Everyone has a gun around here, I mean everyone. I was worried too when that guy was on the loose. However, the dentist that he killed had a lot of guns at his cabin. Which didn't do him any good. The killer had two of the dentist's guns on him when he was shot by the deputies. So it can work either way, I think. Main thing for me is that I am not afraid, however, I would not want to live here without a couple of fiercly protective and watchful dogs. Good to see you again, my friend. And don't worry. OK.

    1. I'm not sure what Google plus is. I may have enabled it when I was fiddling around with my profile since I got an email from a buddy telling me I had google plus.

      What kind of rifle do you have? If it's a world war II era service rifle, I'm sure it's pretty hefty.

      Guns are just tools. They won't ward off evil, but they will make it more likely you can handle it when something evil this way comes. The dentist either didn't have an early warning system (i.e. he didn't know the killer was in his house), couldn't reach a gun in time, (some people lock them up, not much good when the ax murderer comes through the window in the dead of night.) A gun needs to be part of an overall system and the subject of a lot of prior planning and preparation.

      I'm a fan of good dogs as an alert system, but I wouldn't want my two dogs to have to fight somebody armed with an ax or a machete, or shovel, or whatever. If the dogs alert me I'll handle the rest. Glad you are feeling confident, that's half the battle.

      It's good to talk to you again, I know we've both had some health issues lately that dragged us down. Ever onward!

  8. Forgot to mention that I loved reading about all the cooking and all the old stuff you have on your shelves that's still good. I remember when you posted about your storage and all that was in there. What do your ferrets eat?

    1. The ferrets should eat high protein ferret food from the vet . But "kits" as ferret babies are called, imprint on what they eat as youngsters and it's almost impossible to wean an adult ferret off whatever that is. Both my ferrets came to me as adults, as rescues. I feed them high protein kitten chow, the only food they will take. I've tried everything else under the sun. To make up for the fact that they don't get enough protein from the food, they get two kinds of supplement pastes, which they love. They also get "ferret treats" like chicken and bacon flavored treats, which are high protein and they like them. However, I constantly worry that they don't put on weight like they should.

  9. Hey Harry,

    I made a big run to Houston to help a friend out with moving two trucks that were hers to another part of South Texas. This friend had a nasty divorice and got a truck out of the divorce (a rust bucket at that) Myself and another friend drove to Houston and help that lady out and I followed both tracks. I cant write anymore. I am about to fall asleep. I will finish the story tomorrow. One final thing. I saw satellite tv dishes on the balconies of Section 8 housing? I did not have cable when I was poor nor did I have internet and I was not about to demand' that internet or cable is a right:(
    I gotta get some sleep. lots of stories for tomorrow.

    1. Glad you got back ok. Sounds pretty exhausting.

  10. My lovely wife and I are eating our stores so we can rotate them. Most of that stuff takes longer to cook, but it's good healthy eating -especially when we add things like fresh garden food and fresh caught fish.

    I've mixed feelings about open carry. Sure, I want it to be legal everywhere, but I prefer concealed carry for myself. Let the bad guess who's armed and who isn't.

    Rain on the way later today.

    1. I tend to favor concealed carry as I don't want to draw attention to myself. I also don't want to answer questions from out of staters about open carry when I am walking in the park or in a store. I'm more comfortable with concealed carry, perhaps because I've been doing it for 30 years.

      We have more time for cooking now, so we are using the long term food storage more. It does take longer to prepare everything, but it's good practice.

  11. Hey Harry,

    Taking long walks through the forest/park is so relaxing, and a great form of meditation or even a stress reliever. I think I would carry a golf club or a pole with me while walking to help protect yourself from the snake.

    I've canned some of the left over foods from the #10 cans once opened. This way I'm no wasting food, and the food actually comes out good and can be put back into your pantry. I started doing this after reading a post by Patrice at Rural Revolution.

    Have you seen this movie trailer? Amerigeddon by Mike Norris (Chuck Norris' son) I'm hoping to see it, don't know if it will be any good.

    I like the song your friend forwarded to you, it's to the point.

    1. Sandy, you're not allowed to kill the snakes in the park, you have to just back off and let them go about their business. I am all for that with nonpoisonous ones, but I think it's stupid to let rattlers and copperheads hang around the walking trials where somebody might get bitten. And having a water moccasin in the lake is the last thing anybody wants, but there he is and there's nothing to be done about it. I don't think the park service would kill the snakes even if someone did get bit.

      I saw that trailer on someone's blog, can't remember whose, but I didn't know Chuck Norris's son had produced it. I will have to wait to see it on line since our theaters never carry anything contentious.

      I thought that was a good song too. I didn't go alone with every single thing the guy said, but I did most of it and it pretty well summed up how things are for normal people here today.

  12. Last night i had a big snake near my door and had to call some profetional to catch it, He came all the way from Jerusalem (35 minuts) and took about350 dollars...he cought it.

    1. $350 to get rid of a snake!!!! I'm on my way to Israel to open Harry's Snake Wranglers. I could get rich over there.

      Was it poisonous? Then I would hire somebody to work for me and send him to catch it! ;-)

  13. Would love a picture of that moccasin if you ever get a chance, don't think I've seen one up on your blog before.
    I always worry about carjacking. So much so that when I have the windows down and I roll to a light or stop sign I put them up. The gym I workout in sits in a shady part of time but with 501 horsepower, I can move just about anything that gets in the way. My dad told me if something ever happens just give it gas, smash the shit out of whatever is in front of you, who wants a smashed up car.

    1. I just don't go into cities anymore. After my experience in Chattanooga, I can't think of anything I need bad enough to go into a place where the morlocks are looking for Eloi to prey on.

      Carjacking is getting ridiculous in Atlanta. I usually get up early, and watch the local news down there. The early show always starts out with about 4 stories on gun battles in apartment parking lots, then they go into home invasions, then they tell who got killed in convenience store robberies (the blacks rob Paki stores, the young Moslem guys return the favor and rob black run stores.) The last part of the opening segment is who got jacked where. Almost always some well off person who drove a nice car in the wrong place at the wrong time. If you get a chance read the post about the attempted jacking over at Langniaeppes Lair. I spelled it wrong but it's on the side board here. The would be new car owners picked the wrong man on that deal.

      I want to try to get a picture of that moccasin. He's living around a big log by the dam. We usually sit on the bench on top of the dam as it's halfway around the lake. The first time I saw him I nearly croaked. There's nothing more unnerving than a big, black water mocassin in a place where you think they can't possibly be. We saw the other guy up close on the other side of the lake, and he was not a copperhead. It's an exact replica though, except for the head. I would have sworn it was a copperhead, but that's probably the water snakes "plan." I'll see if I can get a picture of him.

  14. Your wife is right,and the home laid eggs are more healthy than the ones you buy and have no idea what they are putting in the feed. They will last several weeks too. We are getting plenty right now. In the next couple weeks we will start butchering the meal birds too. We'll freeze half birds at a time. Have you seen the new home freeze driers? They are expensive and it takes some time to freeze dry. Maybe someday if the price goes down I'll take a look.

    1. I haven't seen a home freeze drier that would do something as big as chickens. Sounds like it would be a very handy item to have at your disposal though.

      I never gave much thought to what was in the feed. For that matter, I don't really know what is in the laying mash I am feeding them now. I hope nothing like antibiotics!

  15. I have seen that documentary. It's a good one. I think you're better off eating your eggs than grocery eggs. No antibiotics or preservatives from what you raise, and it is true about the eggs from the store taking a while to get to the shelf.
    Looks like we have got weather coming.

  16. I saw where it's supposed to get pretty warm. I will fort up inside and run the air conditioner!

    I will just have to eat the eggs and not think about the chickens devouring dead snakes and things like that. Mind over matter.

    I thought that was a good documentary. They produced some really excellent stuff before they just became another generic "realty show" channel.