Catching up on fall chores

The compost pile is beginning to heat up again after big drop off of grass clipping from one of the neighbors. The pile is getting to be a good size, about 1/2 way up the pallets (2 feet high)  and 4 feet x 4 feet length and width.  My friend Gallo says once the pile gets that big you don’t have to mix it quite as often. I’m  changing the order of my compost bins and making one of the bins for the completed compost/soil holding area for next year’s raised beds, pots and buckets. The potato bucket that had good drainage was just chock full of earthworms and I’m hoping the worms will migrate to the compost pile an assist in breaking it down.

I was very surprised  how critical water is in the composting process, so adding more rain water storage is a big to-do project.  I have the spot picked out for the large (500 gal.) rain water cistern, but I’ll need to redirect the gutter downspouts on my shop in order to feed it.  I’m taking some extra time on the cistern because wherever I set it up, it will be to heavy to move, plus saving up with the money to purchase it will also take a few months.  Then there is the choice about burying it in the ground for insulation or placing it on a platform so gravity can help with water flow.  I’m sort of leaning towards burying it for insulation value and then looking at getting a good 12 volt DC pump that could be powered via solar panels and batteries in a “Grid Down” situation.

I started moving some of the firewood to the front porch.  I’ll tell you that little garden wagon I got is super handy for that job.  I figure I can stack about 1/4 to 1/3  of a cord of wood on that wood rack I got from Big Lots.  I have four of the party buckets for the “mill ends” and a lot of kindling already saved in a rolling garbage can. I’m much better prepared for winter heating via the wood stove this year.  I have not burned elm in my stove as I used mostly apple and cherry wood from the local orchards last year along with the mill ends. I don’t think the elm will any dirtier or leave as much ash than the mill ends, but I will give a report as I burn. From what I have read elm will put out about the same BTUs as the apple and cherry wood.  That should cover all the heat and some of the cooking needs for my place if the power goes out for a few days.

Ebola is still in the news and I was correct that I have a better plan for containment and  Isolation compared the the PTBs. I can’t believe that Spain put a few sheets, some cloth “privacy partitions” and some tape with Bio hazard sign and considered that good enough for Ebola.  There is possible a new Ebola infection in Texas via one of the deputies that served the quarantine notice with no protective gear at all! Not even gloves and a mask!  I wonder how all those reporters feel right now,  that attended the “News conference” given by Judge Jenkins after he entered that apartment with no protective gear and did not even change his clothes and actually seemed proud of his actions!  Educate yourself and take at least some basic precautions to protect yourself and your loved ones.

It is not difficult or all that expensive to set up a sickroom, for $5.00 spent at your local dollar store you can get masks, Safety goggles, gloves, bleach and either a tarp or plastic sheeting to isolate the room.  Heck I spent about $100.00 in all, but I got 9 Tyvek suits 3 different types of resuscitators, lots of jello, pudding snacks and freezer pops for fevers. Plastic sheeting for tables, cups and utensils that are disposable.  As well as plenty of OTC meds to treat symptoms.  I’m still thinking about a full face type shield and I will add a couple of I.V. bags of saline and Ringer’s Lactate for hydration but overall I feel darn confident I can handle any sort of infection and have a great start for any Bio/chemical setup to deal with any NBC hazard.

For me the whole point of prepping is that you have the basics on hand to meet any threat/disaster. I have found that getting your basics of water, food, security, 1st aid and sanitation gives me a great start for any disaster. As things happen in the world and the USA I do tend to build up based on that particular disaster even if I’m not affected by it. That gives me confidence in reacting to whatever happens, at least so far… If you have the basics you  can shift gears quickly to deal with a new threat without putting yourself at risk financially.

Power outage or water is shut off for a few days to a few weeks. Not a big deal,  I know I can handle it because of my tests.  Have a plan, test it and learn from others. That has really helped me prep.

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6 Responses to Catching up on fall chores

  1. It seems to me putting stuff away in the Fall takes much more time than it did getting it all out and using it. No matter how fast I seem to get it packed up and put away there still seems like more to do…

    • Jamie says:

      PP: I have noticed the more I learn, the more stuff I need to get done 🙂

      It can be sort of tough working within a small budget to get prepared. It really torques me that the CDC and government are asking for money to re-enforce an incredible lack of planning on their part.
      I’m not sure about the PTBs response on Ebola in the USA. It’s awful but I can’t tell if it is a lack foresight, Hubris, denial or simply taking advantage of a crisis to finish up “Fundamentally transforming America”. All of the above reason scare the crap out of me.

      I’m set up well and should finish up the health preps next week.

      I don’t like the idea of dying as I have faced death a few times in my life and I did not enjoy the experience. So screw the PTBs I’ll do what is needed to protect my tribe and not follow some highly place idiot/mouthpiece that states I should remain calm!

      While I don’t advocate panic as a survival strategy. I’m not saying a person should not panic. Let us hope that Ebola will not spread and become a pandemic. But if you are prepared for a nasty disease like Ebola then the Flu, measles and Chicken pox seems relatively easy to deal with at home.

  2. James MacKenzie says:

    hey jamie!

    thanks for the water tip – i will add more to our compost towers.

    cheers!

    • Jamie says:

      James, Gallo told me that you should get a few drips of water if you squeeze the compost like a sponge. So the compost should be soaked. It’s taken about 3 days but the compost is 140 degrees F.

  3. Like me, you’ve put a lot of time and money into your home. I have no plans to bug out, and the only thing that could really drive me to do so would be a forest fire. Do you ever thing about what you would do if you had to bug out?

    • Jamie says:

      Harry: I think my biggest risk for bugging out would be a chemical spill via the rail road yard about a mile away or gas line leak/explosion. I have a couple of different set ups that should be okay for a short term bug out.
      The mini van Is setup with my GHB (Rolling backpack) and emergency/winter kit. On the shelf next to the minivan is my camping box, duel fuel campstove, sleeping bags, fishing poles/box and lighting. I should be able to load up in about 10 minutes and boogie!

      If the mini van doesn’t work I have my Trike with a large basket and I will load it up with my camping gear.

      Being disabled puts me at risk especially for bugging out so that is my last choice, but I have planed for it.

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