Got the shopping list planned out for this week

August 12, 2012

Of course the big item is getting the 9mm off layaway and at least a couple of boxes of ammo. Sportsmansguide has 4 Kerosene lamps for $18.00. These are the fully enclosed  lamps.  I love the look of the Hurricane type lamps they are a little hard to move without breaking the chimney. My local True Value store is having a great sale on several little items I’ve been wanting to pick up.

I’ve been wanting to get a hands free flashlight for some time and True Value has a LED light that clips on to the brim of a hat/baseball cap for only $2.00. I can afford to get 5 and have some  for trade or to give out to family members.  I have quite a few little flashlights already on hand for trade so I don’t think I can go wrong for only $2.00.

I’m just going to pick up four boxes of canning lids and skip the jars as I still have plenty of jars for canning still on hand. My garden is still on the small side so I’ll make it up once the harvest starts coming into the farmer’s markets and Pauls.

Last but not least is grabbing another outdoor extension cord for $7.00 at True Value. After riverrider’s adventure I want to have at least one more cord that gives me three 25 foot plus cords along with my shorter outdoor cords.  I never thought all that much about extension cord going bad and I really should have considering my Army experience.

Big Lots is having a good sale on paper goods and I really like the store brand paper towels. The sheets are perforated so you can tear off just a half sheet or a whole sheet and at eight rolls for $5.00 they are a good buy.  I will also pick up another package or two of the copy paper for $3.00 each. I know Ferfal from the Blog  “Surviving in Argentina” said having paper and being able to copy and print was a good way to barter or pick up some extra cash in a collapse,  it might be SHTF but paperwork goes on forever!  Big Lots is still selling Hunt’s canned tomatoes for 60 cents a can so I will be picking up a case of twelve for the pantry as backups for my canning.

I’ve seen a couple of different ready to eat meals and veggies in single servings that might work in the BOV or my bugout buckets that I want to test out and see if they are good tasting and can be reheated without electricity.  These meals would provide a break from cooking beans and rice or pasta and provide a simple break from all that waiting and work as well as combat food fatigue.  I’ll let you all know how they work out.

I finally got moving a bit and got the fridge cleaned out. Honestly I dropped the ball while I was feeling crappy and let some food rot and it was nasty at least for me.  I don’t like having a fridge full of food and much prefer to have it in the freezer or pantry. I also had a bad egg that I must have missed with the mineral oil.  It’s darned easy to tell a bad egg when all you want to do is get the smell as far away as quickly as possible.  My other eggs seem fine but the yolks are a little less firm so I’m going to try dehydrating scrambled eggs for storage.

Getting some fuel into the RV and another filled propane tank.  I’d like to get some additional oil as we are starting to see another rise in petroleum products.  I’d feel a lot better if I had 25 + gallons of kerosene on hand but that will have to wait for more paychecks.

I did find that Wally world has the little Zodi propane camp shower for $80.00 and I can order and have shipped for free to the store or my home.  This is a newer version and I have to supply the water bucket for the pump but I can handle that easily.  I don’t like supporting Wal-mart but this is what I can afford.  This is a want to have,  not a need to have. I think I can do okay with my five gallon Igloo water container for storing warm water if the power goes out. Same for the big Mr. Heater as I can run a 12 volt fan to circulate the heat via my little power paks.

I’m still not feeling all warm and fuzzy about the PTBs this Sept. and  them holding it all together. But they have surprised me before and I  keep hoping I’m wrong and all I will have on hand is a great camping and tailgating set up.  In a way, I feel some pity for them as power and money is all they have in life.

Lighting stuff up!

July 5, 2012

Flashlights:  A bit pricey compared to some LED flashlight is the Mini Mag flashlight. But you can still get them for about $10.00- $20.00 new and they come with a backup bulb and are very bright! . I carried one for over 13  years of heavy use in the Army just replacing 4 bulbs and batteries and I still have it though it needs a bulb replaced.   I like the mini-mag because you can adjust the beam from a wide angle for walking your dog in the dark,  down to a narrow beam if you are working on something. Needs 2 AA batteries

I have a multi- LED flashlight High Unita Gear I got from Emergency Essentials for about $5.00 and I have replaced the AAA batteries 1 time in over 3 years.  You can’t adjust the beam like the mini-mag but it has a solid metal housing and the multi LEDs are quite bright.  Small enough to keep by your bed with a long battery life.

I’ve bought several $3.00 and under LED flashlights that are okay for keeping around the house if you have a good backup flashlight or for barter or kids that tend to lose stuff.  I bought several Emergency  kits that contained a windup radio and flashlight that will power for a few minutes after 30 seconds of cranking but these flashlights tend to mediocre at best though the radios do a good job.

Solar yard lights:  Get some of these as they will work as a nite light and the solar cell will recharge batteries during the day. These are cheap Ni-cad batteries usually in AA and you can get these for as little as $1.00 each. and several big box stores sell Lithium batteries for recharging and you will get longer use from good batteries.  Clean the metal contacts of the batteries and the solar cells with a pencil eraser or a little brush and check for rust and you might be surprised on how well these little cheap lamps keep going.

Kerosene lamps:  12 gallons of kerosene will run 1 lamp four hours per day for a year. That’s an incredible bang for your buck on stored fuel.  Depending on how much natural light your windows provide you will need less hours lighting in the summer and more in the winter and five gallons of kerossne will cost about $36.00 at my local farm store, about $10.00 or less per gallon at the big box stores,  add a mirror behind the lamp and you can light an entire room.  I see these lamps a lot at yard/garage sales and you can pick some up for under $10.00 in the camping supply sections or farm stores.  Kerosene is fairly safe to store long term it does not go bad as quickly as gasoline. Crack a window and have a carbon monixide alarm just in case and don’t leave one burning over night/unsupervised because anything that burns will eat oxygen and getting dead because you are afraid of the dark is a darn stupid reason to die!  Trim your wicks and buy extras. The internet will probably be your best source for cheap wicks! The new LDS prepping manual tells you how and why to trim wicks.

Coleman type camping lanterns: These run on all kinds of fuel from “White Gas” to propane and or duel fuel models, but figure using up one mantel every 3 months and buy extras for your pantry. Buy a couple of  extra glass globes that cost under $10.00 each just in case one gets broken. Yes you will need them especially if you have kids or you are klutzy like me.

Lighters and matches:  A big box of “strike anywhere” matches can be had cheap at your local dollar store.  I have bought as many as 3 boxes for a dollar. The smaller boxes of  32 wooden matches can be had for 10 boxes for a dollar.  Dip in a little paraffin wax, they are water proof.  Trick birthday candles can be bought at your local dollar store and they stay lit in the wind and are great for camping. It’s a lot easier to use a match or lighter  light a little birthday candle than it is a fire.  Bic lighters if you get them for around a dollar or less each are not only great to have on hand but seem to be a great barter item.  I’ve bought everything from Zippos to cheap 3 for a dollar lighters and the bic lighter seem to hit the sweet spot for costs if you get them for around a dollar each in cost.

I’m not knocking candles but the light tends to be some what iffy. It’s usually not good to read by, and you have a fire hazard if they are knocked over.  They are an okay back up but for good and safe lighting I’m going with rechargeable batteries and kerosene lamps as the best compromise on safety, ease of use and cost.




Big Storm rolling in

February 20, 2012

Got a bit of snow today it didn’t stick as it has been in the 40-50s most days.  On Wed. though the front is supposed to hit hard with winds 40-60 mph.  So I’ve been puttering around making sure nothing can blow around and become a hazard.  My house is somewhat sheltered so wind isn’t usually a big problem. I figure on giving the house a good cleaning  Tuesday in case the power goes out.  I did the dishes and laundry today and I’ll do dusting and vacuuming tomorrow. Get a little gas in the generator and run a quick test and make sure my extension cords are where they are supposed to be and untangled.

I need to grab a propane hose adapter for my little oven and Mr. Heater. Going from the 1 pound tanks to a standard tank. I can get the hose for under $20.00 at the hardware store. I’d like to get 1 more full tank but, I have 3 and that should see me through any minor power outages.  Lights, lamps, flashlights and matches are all positioned for easy reach and batteries are tested. I think I’ll do a test of the kerosene lamps and another of the Kerosene heater. They have not been lit up this year.

As you know I got my SKS on layaway and I should pay it off next week.  I can tell you I’m darned excited to get her home and give her a good going over and getting to know her.  I still need to pick up some ammo and a bore brush for her but that looks doable. I think I’ll call her Sasha.  I saw an article on yahoo on  how layaway was a bad idea/mistake for a poor person. Some how it was worse than using credit. I can’t get my mind around that concept.  I don’t pay interest or a fee, and have laid away many items that are on sale. I got my propane oven that way and if I waited to pay cash it would have cost me $30-$50.00 more than I paid.

I’ll be drawing down my cash reserves a bit more than I like or feel comfortable with normally. It’s kind of funny as I used to have the worse time on keeping cash on hand as little as 9 months ago. Trust me,  I could always find something to spend it on that I needed and I never seemed to be able to put a few dollars in a stash and forget about it. Now I start feeling odd by not having a cash reserve.  I think I changed my mindset when I started thinking in silver.  I have a little junk silver and some rounds and I started asking myself would I sell my silver to get …….?  If the answer was no, I wouldn’t get it.  There is not a lot I’d get if I had to sell my silver to pay for it.  It’s what works for me.

This is the greatest part of prepping for me. Any kind of storm that comes I can simply take a look at what may happen and tweak a few items and be ready.  I don’t have to rush to the store and get food,  fill my gas tank or buy fuel, a stove and new batteries as I have everything all ready to go.  I won’t run out of clean clothes to wear for at least 2 weeks, and I have plenty of books and games to keep myself entertained.

I’m ready! So let it blow, let it blow