Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Internet Withdrawal and Thought for the Day

My internet went out over the weekend. Had to get a tech out here to fix it. Seems that all the electrical storms, not that any were that close, caused static in the air which affected the satellite dish. Well, I'm not a technically savvy person so that's the best I can do on the explanation. Hey, it's better than saying our severe weather blew out the receiver thingy. But needless to say, both my grandson and I have been having internet withdrawal. He hasn't IMd his friends all weekend and I had something like 148 emails today.

Here's a thought for today: At five minutes, six seconds after 4 AM on the 8th of July this year, the time and date will be 04:05:06 07/08/09. No, even though I had the time with the internet being out, I didn't think of that myself. But I do think it's pretty neat.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Giveaway - Harvest 72" Food Storage Center

Note: Giveaway is now closed - nope, I didn't win. :(

Now here's something that could get your food storage (aka stock pile) area organized. What an ingenious concept. AND they're having a giveaway. Click here to find out how to enter. I've never won anything in my life but here's hoping because this is definitely worth having.

Shuttin Detroit Down

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Food Storage

I remember my mother, as did many old-time farm folk, always had a canning closet full of food that had been prepared during the summer (a time of plenty) to be eaten during the winter (a time of scarcity). Before the convenience of a market as close as your car will take you, folks routinely canned and preserved food for winter usage. In these uncertain times a lot of us are wisely trying to keep more food, fuel and emergency supplies on hand. My DIL wrote this guest post about food storage. (If you missed her post on couponing you can read that here. And check out her blog for ongoing coupons, deals, and more ways to save.)

Food Storage.
Also called stockpiling.

Chances are you either know what that means, or you couldn't care less.

So today I want to talk about:
What it is
How to get it
And why some people don't.

Food Storage is security.

Basically by building a stock pile of foods and goods that your family uses on a regular basis-you are preparing for the future. Kind of like the Biblical principle of the Egyptians storing away 1/5th of their grain in the "FAT" years. (Genesis 47:24) Then if one of those "rainy days" comes along and you have less pay then expected or NO job at all-you'll still eat. If you need to pay an unexpected bill-you can stop buying groceries and put that $ towards the bill.

Stockpiling food actually saves $ too. If I stock up on tuna when it's .25 a can and buy enough till the next sale-I don't end up paying $1 a can. That's just an example from 1 item. I try to do this with everything;)

How to store Food:

Simply one can or box at a time. That's the secret. Just get started. Before you know you'll have a nice little stash of goods. No one is saying to go stock the garage with a silo's worth of wheat! But if you see a sale on your brand of Peanut Butter for the week-by all means grab an extra one or 2 and tuck them away.

Most of the items in a food storage will have a long shelf life such as canned veggies, tuna, dry milk etc. There are plenty of commercial food storage sites on the net available to buy #10 cans of food from. While I have some of those, most of our food in storage comes from the good ol' grocery stores where I buy things in multiples, when they go on sale -with coupons of course:)

I find there are only really a few reasons people don't build a food storage.
Maybe 3.

1. They don't want to offend God.
2. They worry where they'll put it.
3. They're barely getting by now, so afraid they can't afford it.

#1: I don't know how many times I have heard someone say that they don't need Food storage because "God will provide". This is true. All that we have comes from Him. He is our great provider. But I can tell you I have never felt He is mad at me because I have had an extra case or 2, OK 5, of Hormel chili laying around. In fact I think He has been very happy when hard times have hit people like my Brother when he lost his job, or our neighbor's daughter and I was able to give them a good load of food and toiletries because I had a stockpile.

Trust me, we do not offend Him by taking some thought to be a little prepared. I mean really if our children do a little more then expected do we get mad? Why would food, an every day basic need, anger Him? Especially if there are children at home...He doesn't want us to wait for Manna, He wants us to get prepared for some of the things He's already told us will come: famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in divers places. (Matthew 24:7)

I have a feeling those will affect the food chain...

#2: Some of my first Food storage used to be in the cardboard cases I brought them home in and then tucked them under a bed. I now keep 5 Gallon buckets under another bed filled with Oatmeal, rice, wheat, dry milk, pastas etc. that we buy in bulk. Mac n cheeses, crackers, cereals, puddings etc. go on shelving. (We don't have a basement, so if we can do it-YOU can too:) Sugar is kept in galvanized trash cans with lids that I just throw the packages in that I bought for that reason alone, with flour in another as well.

#3: Might be the only excusable reason for not starting a stock pile. Most times though it can be just a mismanagement of one's $ that leaves them without even a dollar or 2 to put towards Food storage each week. I myself have had to ask if my kids really needed another $20 toy that would break in 2 days or should I buy 5 cases of canned Food at Aldi for that?

I put the toy back-I'll let them splurge at the yard sales...
Or better yet wait for Grandma to visit! :)

Really, in this uncertain economical time we live in, being prepared will be a blessing to your family. Please consider getting started today it only takes an extra can or box and you're on your way!

Enjoy this wonderful video I came across:

For more articles on Food Storage visit these great sites:
Prepared LDS Family GREAT! pics. of a food storage (much neater then mine;)
Safely Gathered In Food storage ideas,recipes, and Emergency Preparedness
Everyday Food Storage-great recipes to use your food storage with.

Monday, June 22, 2009

An Open Letter to our Nation's Leadership

Here's a letter to our Nation's leadership that, although I didn't write it, states my thoughts exactly (except for the part about being a registered Democrat). And here's the link where you can sign a petition to voice your agreement as well.

"I'm a home grown American citizen, 53, registered Democrat all my life. Before the last presidential election I registered as a Republican because I no longer felt the Democratic Party represents my views or works to pursue issues important to me. Now I no longer feel the Republican Party represents my views or works to pursue issues important to me. The fact is I no longer feel any political party or representative in Washington represents my views or works to pursue the issues important to me. There must be someone. Please tell me who you are. Please stand up and tell me that you are there and that you're willing to fight for our Constitution as it was written. Please stand up now. You might ask yourself what my views and issues are that I would horribly feel so disenfranchised by both major political parties. What kind of nut job am I? Will you please tell me?
Take a breath. Listen to the people. Let's just slow down and get some input from some nonpoliticians on the subject. Stop making everything an emergency. Stop speed reading our bills into law. I am not an activist. I am not a community organizer. Nor am I a terrorist, a militant or a violent person. I am a parent and a grandparent. I work. I'm busy. I'm busy. I am busy, and I am tired. I thought we elected competent people to take care of the business of government so that we could work, raise our families, pay our bills, have a little recreation, complain about taxes, endure our hardships, pursue our personal goals, cut our lawn, wash our cars on the weekends and be responsible contributing members of society and teach our children to be the same all while living in the home of the free and land of the brave.
I entrusted you with upholding the Constitution. I believed in the checks and balances to keep from getting far off course. What happened? You are very far off course. Do you really think I find humor in the hiring of a speed reader to unintelligently ramble all through a bill that you signed into law without knowing what it contained? I do not. It is a mockery of the responsibility I have entrusted to you. It is a slap in the face. I am not laughing at your arrogance. Why is it that I feel as if you would not trust me to make a single decision about my own life and how I would live it but you should expect that I should trust you with the debt that you have laid on all of us and our children. We did not want the TARP bill. We said no. We would repeal it if we could. I am sure that we still cannot. There is such urgency and recklessness in all of the recent spending.
From my perspective, it seems that all of you have gone insane. I also know that I am far from alone in these feelings. Do you honestly feel that your current pursuits have merit to patriotic Americans? We want it to stop. We want to put the brakes on everything that is being rushed by us and forced upon us. We want our voice back. You have forced us to put our lives on hold to straighten out the mess that you are making. We will have to give up our vacations, our time spent with our children, any relaxation time we may have had and money we cannot afford to spend on you to bring our concerns to Washington. Our president often knows all the right buzzword is unsustainable. Well, no kidding. How many tens of thousands of dollars did the focus group cost to come up with that word? We don't want your overpriced words. Stop treating us like we're morons.
We want all of you to stop focusing on your reelection and do the job we want done, not the job you want done or the job your party wants done. You work for us and at this rate I guarantee you not for long because we are coming. We will be heard and we will be represented. You think we're so busy with our lives that we will never come for you? We are the formerly silent majority, all of us who quietly work , pay taxes, obey the law, vote, save money, keep our noses to the grindstone and we are now looking up at you. You have awakened us, the patriotic spirit so strong and so powerful that it had been sleeping too long. You have pushed us too far. Our numbers are great. They may surprise you. For every one of us who will be there, there will be hundreds more that could not come. Unlike you, we have their trust. We will represent them honestly, rest assured. They will be at the polls on voting day to usher you out of office. We have cancelled vacations. We will use our last few dollars saved. We will find the representation among us and a grassroots campaign will flourish. We didn't ask for this fight. But the gloves are coming off. We do not come in violence, but we are angry. You will represent us or you will be replaced with someone who will. There are candidates among us when hewill rise like a Phoenix from the ashes that you have made of our constitution.
Democrat, Republican, independent, libertarian. Understand this. We don't care. Political parties are meaningless to us. Patriotic Americans are willing to do right by us and our Constitution and that is all that matters to us now. We are going to fire all of you who abuse power and seek more. It is not your power. It is ours and we want it back. We entrusted you with it and you abused it. You are dishonorable. You are dishonest. As Americans we are ashamed of you. You have brought shame to us. If you are not representing the wants and needs of your constituency loudly and consistently, in spite of the objections of your party, you will be fired. Did you hear? We no longer care about your political parties. You need to be loyal to us, not to them. Because we will get you fired and they will not save you. If you do or can represent me, my issues, my views, please stand up. Make your identity known. You need to make some noise about it. Speak up. I need to know who you are. If you do not speak up, you will be herded out with the rest of the sheep and we will replace the whole damn congress if need be one by one. We are coming. Are we coming for you? Who do you represent? What do you represent? Listen. Because we are coming. We the people are coming."
Janet Contreras

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day

I actually found this on my DIL's blog. She finds the neatest stuff, not only coupons and free stuff, but great videos as well.

My dad used to say that anyone can be a hero for a moment when called upon in a crisis. But the real heroes are people who get up every morning and go to work, come home and spend time with their families. People who do what needs to be done each and every day, no matter how hard it is, for years, to provide for and care for their families. Those are the real heroes in the world.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The Great Fisherman

Our grandson Austin, who's almost 11, visited this past weekend and, as usual, wanted to go fishing in the pond. He promised me he'd catch dinner. This prize was caught within minutes of him dropping in the line - a 3 1/2 lb. trout. It made an excellent meal. Great job Austin!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Father's Day Gift Idea

For all you ladies who don't know what to get DH for Father's Day, here's a great idea. And for all you guys, here's an idea of what to ask for. It's not too late. Bet you could get one made by Sunday.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Sitting Goat and Other Weird Animals

This is Grinch, our goat who thinks she's a dog. I've never seen a goat sit like this before. While all the others are laying down chewing their cud (sounds yummy doesn't it?) Grinch will be sitting on the hill overlooking her territory, doing her best impersonation of a dog. I'm waiting for her to bark, or with just a lift of the head, she could howl at the moon.

And if that's not strange enough, here's one of the lambs who likes to lay in the water trough. The lambs don't have names because they all look alike and I didn't get close enough to see the ear tag number, but I believe it's the same one each time I see the trough occupied.

When she knows she's been seen, she ducks down like she's playing peek-a-boo. (I know you wouldn't have believed it if you hadn't seen it.) Somewhere in the deep recesses of her minuscule sheep brain she may be thinking that if she can't see me I can't see her.

OK, so I've got weird animals here. But it just adds to the fun of farming.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Went to the Temple

Thanks to everyone for blessings sent my way. Life has its ups and downs but right now I seem to be on an upswing. Had an opportunity to visit my church's temple in Boston MA last Friday. Since it's at least a 4 hour drive from where I live it makes for a whole day's journey. And I have difficulty driving into town without needing a nap. I had called a friend at the beginning of last week to go over the music for church and she noticed I seemed down. I commented that I felt I needed to go to the temple. Without hesitation she asked "When would you like to go?" I said I wasn't doing anything Friday. She then asked "What time should I be at your house?" Everyone should have dear friends like that in their lives. I had someone take a picture of us in front of the temple just so you can get an idea of its size. The temple is not only a very spiritual and peaceful place, it's also very beautiful. It's a place to renew one's soul which makes life a lot brighter and the load a lot lighter. I'm so grateful to have been able to attend and grateful even more for a friend who was willing to take an entire day out of her busy schedule to help me get there.

Monday, June 1, 2009

I Need A Hug!!!!

Yup, I've had one of those days. Actually it was one of those weeks. Unlike my DIL I didn't take pictures of the catastrophes so you'll just have to use your imagination.

I suppose it started a weekend ago when someone didn't close the house door tight enough and Pippin, the goat, got into the house. I was in the barn and heard Indy, our 11 year old weimaraner, clawing at the door. Thinking he must really need to go out I ran to the house, opened the door, and saw, to my great surprise, a large white goat. (Now this is where I didn't stop to take pictures.) Indy hightailed it out of there but Pippin didn't think she was quite ready to leave and had to be convinced that goats do not belong in the house. After removing said goat I decided it was best to survey the damage. Guess she hadn't been inside very long because everything was still intact. But... she had pooped and peed on the oriental carpet in the living room. OK, so I guess the carpet needed cleaning anyway, I just hadn't planned on doing it right then.

My week wasn't much better. There wasn't any specific catastrophes but just lots of little annoyances. When little annoyances accumulate they build to big annoyances. Plus the weather was cold and rainy, and cold and rainy, and cold and rainy.... Very depressing indeed.

DH and I had plans on Saturday which got waylaid when I found a sheep limping on Saturday morning. Upon further investigation I found she had mastitis on one side. Had to have been an injury as she had successfully been nursing twins for the past 2 months. So DH had an unplanned butchering to do. (Again, didn't stop to take pictures.) He's getting faster at it and in a few hours he was done. But it was just long enough to put a crimp in our travel plans for the day. So we went to plan B.

Did get to see my daughter and grandkids in southern NH for an all too brief visit. Hadn't seen them in months so the visit wasn't nearly long enough. And we saw the new Star Trek movie - very good. So those were the positives of the weekend. But the negatives were that DH and I were both tired, disappointed that our plans had changed, and the stress showed in the argument we got in to.

I was hoping this week would be better. Awoke this morning to an unusual sound - a chicken in the driveway. Now that doesn't seem like an unusual sound when you live on a farm but, since the chickens are supposed to be penned up at night, a chicken shouldn't have been in the driveway at that early hour. I looked out my bedroom window and, not only did I see the chickens running around, I saw that the barn gate was wide open. I hurriedly threw on my clothes and raced out to the barn. Fortunately the goats hadn't wandered far and were quite willing to follow me back into the barn. I was worried that our 2 Great Pyrenees had escaped but I found that they hadn't been let out of the other section of the barn last night. On one hand that was a good thing, on the other they had decided to have a wrestling match and knocked over a 25 lb. bag of white clover seeds (that cost $150) that were now scattered all over the floor. (Nope, no pictures.) Also found that the small door to the chicken coop had been left open and the goat kids were obviously small enough to squeeze through. Yummy chicken feed in their tummies and a few broken eggs on the floor as they had tried to eat the hay in the nest boxes, pulling the eggs out with it! (Again, no pictures.)

So the first part of my morning was spent scooping up clover seeds, making sure everyone was back where they belonged and generally straightening up all the mess. I had an appointment to get my summer tires on (ok, I know it's June but, hey, up here we could still have a blizzard you know). Had asked my grandson to take the truck to the garage for me but apparently he forgot because he was still sleeping when it was time to leave. So off I went to the Chevy garage. By this time I felt like if any more stress was added I was going to blow. Got out of the truck at the garage and saw DH drive in. Apparently the grandson damaged yet another tire and rim on his car. Yup, that was just the kind of added stress I was talking about. I just couldn't deal with anything more so I just shrugged my shoulders, gave a big sigh and turned to go get my tires changed. I guess that wasn't exactly the response DH was looking for so he got really upset. Well, that's great, I thought. He's gone for the week and that's not a good note to leave on. My mother used to say that couples should never go to bed angry. How about going to work angry and being gone all week? And I found out it's going to cost $340 to fix a problem I've been having with the fan in the truck. Later on in the afternoon I was getting some lumber down from where we store it in the rafters and fell off the step stool, landing in some other lumber. Turned my ankle, bruised my backside and hit the back of my head. (Definitely didn't take pictures!)

So yeah, I need a hug - make it a big one!!! Thanks for letting me rant.