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Prep Genrl Weekly Prep Thread: September 16 ~ 22, 2018
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  1. #1

    Weekly Prep Thread: September 16 ~ 22, 2018

    Good Morning, All! Hope this post finds you all and your family members safe with the frightening things - Hurricane Florence, gas explosions in Boston suburbs to name just a couple - happening at this time. Prayers for those in the pathways, and for our intrepid First Responders and the Volunteers who put their own lives at risk to help others; we are so blessed to have these folks among us!

    The neighbor lady and I slacked off a bit and didn't head up to the pool until around 8 am yesterday; there were a total of 4 other people there during the hour we stayed. Sure hope they got their water heating system fixed - the water temp was 78*F yesterday (it's usually 85*F) and I can just hear the elderly ladies howling on Monday when they get in for aqua aerobics class!! We should already be in and out by then, thank goodness! I'm sure going to miss my daily jaunts to the pool when I have to go back to work later this week.

    Since I had to run in town yesterday afternoon to pick up the pie I'd ordered from the foo-foo bakery, I hit a couple of stores while I was there. First, I popped in to Dollar General to finish using up my Gain ($2.95 after coupon) and Tide Simply (95 cents after coupon) coupons. I ended up with 6 packages of each after using up all my coupons but then daughter said she doesn't really like the Tide Simply, so when I go to the pool on Monday, I will stop by the American Legion afterwards and drop them off - they have an ongoing collection area for household needs for the Veterans who are getting out of the VA hospital to help them set up their households; doubt they care if their laundry doesn't smell like flowers!

    I stopped by the grocery store to snag 4 more tubs of the 'Spend $25 get $10 off' Folger's coffee; grabbed a roast chicken while I was there as it was just too darned hot at 93*F to even think about turning on the oven and I wanted real food, not sandwiches (though I won't be disappointed if Hubby turns the leftover chicken into chicken salad...) I grabbed another 3 cases of the bottled water they had on sale for $1.99; the Baptist church in a small town nearby usually takes a trailer of relief supplies when there is a disaster - last time they had their donation drop off point at a football game and filled their trailer AND a donated flat bed semi trailer as well.

    I'd picked up my pie and was putting it in the van when the grandsons video messaged me.... Decided that Papaw and I didn't really NEED to eat a whole pie by ourselves, so snagged the boys on my way out of town - which led to a stop at the store in our little home town for ice cream to go on the pie.... and popsicles and ice cream sandwiches and cheese puffs for Papaw and Doritos for the boys and lemons to make homemade lemonade.... At least everything but the lemons were on sale Dang good thing I saved all that money using coupons/sales

    Then Hubby came home from work with Italian food from our favorite restaurant in our work town as a surprise for me - with it and the chicken, there was plenty for supper for the 4 of us, plus enough leftovers for today or tomorrow. He also came in with a bag from Rural King that he was trying to be sneaky with; he finally came clean and handed me the 525 ct box of .22 LR he'd bought. Now, this is the man who grumbles at ME when I bring home .22's - I think maybe he's been sneaking on this forum while I'm not home....

    Daughter had plans last evening to make a quick run in to her local VFW where a benefit was being hosted - she thought she was just going through the drive through area to pick up a meal.... Ha! I could have told her that's not how that generally works out around here Needless to say, she ended up staying for a while to help out. Her donation to the auction ended up bringing $600 at the auction; she was pretty excited that it did so well. It makes me so proud to see her helping in her community.

    Plans for today include apple pie for breakfast (at least for me!) plus a couple of cups of foo-foo Chocolate Caramel Brownie coffee that was a gift from my co-worker buddy to go along with it. The grandsons gave me a pretty purple aster plant to put in my garden so we'll go out and plant it later this morning; we'll have to rig up a sunshade for it with some electric fence posts and cardboard and give it a water bottle (gallon milk jug with a couple of holes poked in the bottom) as it's supposed to continue hot and sunny through the next week. The asters grow well here and provide a fall food source for the pollinators, so I am very happy with my new plant - especially since all my other asters are pink; this will provide nice contrast.

    I need to head over to the nearby corn field and cut some tassels to use in fall cemetery and house decorations; they make very good background fill (spray 'em with hairspray to keep them from shedding). The corn and soybean harvests are starting so I need to get the tassels before they disappear. I'm keeping an eye on the corn field across the way where I have permission to glean missed ears for my wild critters; gotta get in there in the small window of time between right after they harvest/before they disc down the stalks.

    If I can get the boys fed and shove 'em outside in that short window of time between the dew drying off and it getting miserably hot, I need to do more work on clearing the gardens off - looks like I'm going to have a bumper crop of zinnia and marigold seeds to harvest this year; that sure makes me smile! True, I don't eat the flowers, but they do provide food for the pollinators The boys and I are also going to take the buggy down to the persimmon grove to see how they are coming along - it looked to be a very small crop this year, so I am going to have to be quick to beat the critters to them to harvest seed. We also need to pick up walnuts in the side yard again; that'll be ongoing into the middle of next month

    Other plans for the week:

    Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday are good days to graft or take cuttings per the signs; I'm going to try to take cuttings of my pineapple sage and Eutin roses; I haven't had any luck keeping the pineapple sage alive in either dormant or growing condition over the winter but will try again. The hummingbirds really like it, and it blooms late in the season so provides a nectar source when others are slowing down. It also smells really good in potpourri! I also need to check under the oak trees to see how many acorns are dropping, ditto the hickory trees for nuts. I've peeled the husk off a few walnuts and put them in a cage to dry (to keep the blasted squirrels from hauling them off - score is now Hubby 8; squirrels 0 ) so I can see if I want to keep any or just haul them down to the gully and dump them for the fluffy tailed rats.

    Monday - pool, then a doctor's appointment in the afternoon to see if we can figure out what's going on with my blood pressure - highs of 196/121 down to a low of 87/49 that kept me home from the football game on Friday as I didn't think I should be driving in case it dropped farther - really grumpy about that one because apparently I missed a really good game Also grumpy about needing to be on a med since I've mostly managed to avoid anything daily other than vitamins. Hubby may go with me to the doc appointment so we can stop by Rural King afterwards to look at shotguns again; I keep trying, but the one he bought me is just too big for me to handle well unless I have a rest or something else to prop it on, so I want to look again for a youth model. We're also going over to the range so I can try out the different scope he put on my Mini 14; I was doing fine with the open sights but he needed the scope - on, ahem - MY rifle.

    Tuesday: no plans beyond the pool and yard/garden work.

    Wednesday: pool, and the kids get out of school at 2pm so I might need to pick them up.

    Thursday and Friday - vacation over; back to work

    Saturday - Co-worker Buddy's birthday so Hubby, the grandkids and I will take him out out to supper. Saturday, Sunday, and Monday are good days to plant grains and leafy annuals so I will get some more fall greens planted in the one bed I've managed to get cleared so far

    Dang, now I'm all worn out just thinking about that stuff

    Take care all; stay safe!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    in the bunker
    At the store I saw two cases of Ritz crackers for 99 cents a box. No brainer there, I bought them all quick. Probably saved at least 5 dollars per box on local price. I doubt I could buy them in town for that price.

    Hunting winding down. Six more outings to wrap the season.

  3. #3
    We got back about a week ago from a wonderful two week cruise to Alaska. Now I am grumpy because vacation is over and it is still in the mid-90s here and I absolutely hate hot weather. Alaska was wonderful with it's 55-60 degree weather.

    In the past couple of months and through this weekend I have purchased some new clothes (smaller size) and gotten rid of my older, bigger clothes. I should be set on clothing for quite some time. Managed to stock up on t-shirts in Alaska as well, and got a very nice, heavy/waterproof reversible fleece jacket for $20 (it's nice to cruise at the end of the season as they are trying to get rid of inventory). I also added 8 books on homesteading/living in Alaska to my library.

    This trip was paid for before we left, so we are now saving for future trips. I am just a few hundred short of hitting my max for my ROTH IRA donation for the year and should have that done by the end of October. I try to divide my money between paying down bills, saving for retirement and travel. Gotta have some balance in life. I work too many hours (my opinion) and don't want to put everything off until "someday".

    Careful shopping has allowed me to stock the grandkids ( 3 1/2 year old twin girls) up on clothes for the fall and winter (it doesn't get too cold here in Florida) in the next size. They are growing up too fast for me, but they keep me young.

    I continue to rotate the preps as I can. The sales here stink and the coupons are even worse. We were running low on kitty litter and just ordered 5 buckets of litter from Chewy with a code they sent because we had not ordered in a while. Worked out to $10 for a 35 lb bucket. Had some gift cards to Petsmart (cashback from Discover) and spent about $70 on canned food for the kitties. Still have that much more on gift cards, but will wait a bit and hope for some coupons. I did get some online.

    Did a run to Sams for everyday kind of stuff. Didn't buy any prepping stuff except a box of salt. The only thing I need on the shelf is deodorant and I finally went through my 3 year supply. Found out the gel kind doesn't do well past 2 years, so I will work on keeping about an 18 month supply. I do have an ECB from CVS this week that I will use with their sale to pick up a couple of more. My toilet paper stash and laundry detergent stash are both getting below the two year mark, so it is time to start looking for deals a little more closely. There just hasn't been anything out there lately.

    Still have cleaning out to do (the neverending task), but getting there bit by bit. Just gathered all of my old underwear (from years back-100% cotton) that I had kept stacked in the garage and stuffed them all into a plastic kitchen trash bag and put them on a shelving unit to be used for rags if needed. I mean, we are talking ten or more years worth and three larger sizes worth of old underwear--there was a lot. If not needed for rags, it will be easy to just dump the whole bag in the trash.

    Oh, and we found that our stash of AA and AAA batteries, which admittedly are getting older, are not working very well, so we are going to dispose of those (properly) and make sure to get new ones. We really don't use many, but we are in hurricane territory and they were backups for a lot of things, so cheap insurance. Time for new insurance.

    I also read a bunch of other prep forums that I look at a few times a year; everyone has a "what did you do today" thread. I skimmed them all (caught up since May) and made a list of things I needed to do or research. Thankfully, that list is not too long after 20 years of doing this, but you can still find a nugget or two in doing that exercise.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    SE Georgia
    I got my new grill. A Blackstone Tailgator version. It has a flat grill and a regular grill and both are removable to allow for large pots, (thing canning) to cook on the flames. A nice overall grill that allows for plentiful amount of tasks and is light enough to move quickly and through on the truck as it has folding legs.

    That and stocking up on ammo is all I did last week.

  5. #5
    What will you be hunting in the upcoming outings, Ivan? We have about a week and a half before bow season for deer starts. Great deal on the crackers!

    Prudentwatcher, our CVS has Duracell batteries on sale buy one/get one 50% off this week; I need to pick up some 12 volt (did you see the video on how to charge your cell phone with a 12 volt battery?), but the store by the pool was out, so I'll need to check the that's on my drive home from work.

    Sounds like a great grill, 20Gauge! And I don't think you can ever have enough ammo

    Made it to the pool for exercise Sunday evening after the boys went home, again Monday early morning and Tuesday evening after the neighbor got off work; neighbor didn't feel good this morning so I took a 2.5 mile walk instead - picked up some hickory nuts , made note of the location of a Jewelweed bush (poison ivy treatment), and pulled a few Chicory seed heads from a plant along side the road to plant along the south side of my machine shed. I may see if the neighbor thinks she'll feel like going to the pool this evening after work; or may go by myself.

    Other plans for today include washing and hanging up inside to dry 2 loads of laundry - they started cutting beans kitty-corner across the section (a mile away) about 10 minutes ago and the wind is out of the southeast and is strong enough that my van is already coated with a light layer of bean dust. Just glad I made it home from my walk before they started; I'll likely be hitting the Zyrtec shortly if I have to spend any amount of time outside. Don't know what it is about the bean dust, but it gives me fits where corn does not. While I'm stuck inside and doing laundry, I'll be moving my stash of laundry detergent around a bit - quite a bit of it will be going to daughter's house when she moves next month - everything with any sort of scent. I'll then need to add a dozen or so jugs of unscented to what I stock for here at home.

    Canning season is about done other than apples, pears, concord and Niagra grapes; plus any meat sales that happen along. Older grandson has requested 'red applesauce' again this year - it's regular applesauce (use apple peeler/corer/slicer to prep; throw in pot with a little water, cook until softened, mash with mixer until chunky) made with some 'Red Hots' candy pieces added as it cooks. Since older brother asked for red applesauce, little brother wanted orange (his favorite color) applesauce - I'm going to make a teeny batch with a bit of orange extract and food coloring and let him try it before I actually can any; I'm betting he won't care for it.

    Dang, looks like I might be going out in the bean dust after all; the neighbor just pulled a grain truck up beside the field across the road and is walking toward the house; bet he needs a ride to his combine!

    Take care all; stay safe, stay as happy as you can!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2018
    Renee, you must have an awful lot of storage space for preps, LOL! I only have enough room for 12 large jugs of laundry detergent. I do have several bars of Zote laundry soap, though, stashed away. Also, I was mildly surprised to see that you also hang your laundry indoors to dry. Not many women do that. Do you have a special set up, or do you use those wooden folding laundry racks? I use them, and hang the larger pieces on clothes hangers during the winter months or when it's raining.

    I wish I had as much energy as you. You wear me out just reading what you get done every day!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Where hiking boots go to die
    I am slowly working on decluttering the place. I don't know how but it seems to sneak back in while I'm not looking and multiplies.
    Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it. - Mark Twain

  8. #8
    OGM, If you happen to find my Fit-Bit while you're decluttering...... I've spent a good two hours this morning trying to find the blasted thing - I only use it 4 weeks a year to earn points in our Wellness program, so it tends to get lost from November of one year to October of the next. I'm thinking you're correct on the multiplying part - I've found 2 Fit-Bit bands and 2 chargers from my old Fit-Bit; thought I only had one of each

    Southern Breeze, I've turned closets into pantries and stuffed things everywhere I can think of - under stairs, in totes under beds, added extra shelves in closets besides the one over the hanging rod etc... We built our house in stages, and lived in the basement while we finished the upstairs, so I have about 6' of upper and lower cabinets along one wall in the utility room - the left side of the 42" 'kitchen' sink cabinet currently holds 38 of the 50 oz jugs of detergent - 3 rows of 7 on the bottom, a very heavy piece of cardboard on top of those, then 2 rows of 7 on the top, and 3 more jugs turned sideways in between the two top rows. With judicious positioning and a heavy piece of cardboard in between the layers, I have two rows of gallon jugs of bleach double stacked the same way on the other side, plus 4 more jugs of laundry detergent wedged in. In my utility closet (where the furnace, water heater, sump pump, etc.. live), I was able to find room for a small 14"x22", 4 shelf unit from WM; it holds an additional 10 of the 50 oz jugs of laundry detergent per shelf on 3 of the shelves, plus approximately 30 of the smaller packs of detergent pods - not that those stay on the shelves very long with daughter around!

    As for hanging laundry inside, pants and jeans are hung on plastic hangers that I have added 2 to 3 clips to - you can buy clips made to fit on plastic hangers at Dollar Tree, Dollar General, or WM. Those hangers are hung on the top pull up bar of the Bow Flex to dry Socks, underclothes, washcloths and dishtowels are hung on my hanging circular clothespin drying rack or the plastic hangers that I have added clips to - a normal size plastic hanger will hold 10-12 clips. I also have closet rod holders screwed into 3 different open doorways a few inches down from the top, and painted to match the doorways to make them not as noticeable; I can slip the rods that are cut to fit those spaces in the holders and hang things on hangers there to dry - I have also used the springe/tension type shower or curtain rods in doorways, but they do not bear very heavy weights. We aren't fond of thick, heavy bath towels so ours are the normal size/thickness ones; they go on those clip hangers on the doorway rods or Bow-Flex to dry. I try not to wash sheets unless I can dry them outside, but have flung them over shower curtain rods to dry if I have to. I also have some lengths of clothes line with turnbuckles on the ends that I can hook in eye bolts that are screwed in the 4x4 posts inside the machine shed if needs be, but sometimes mice (and, recently, a groundhog!) get in the shed, so I don't like to do that.

    Going back to work Thursday and Friday wore me plumb out, but I think it was the noise level, people rushing around type chaos, and having to talk to people that made me tired rather than the actual work And then I allowed myself to get conned into working a partial shift on Monday - hoping it's only the 6 hours I signed up for!

    I ran in to town this morning to hit Dollar General - got 1 package each of Tide and Gain pods plus a 150 oz jug of Extra brand liquid detergent for $7 and change; then had to turn around and go back in the store to get what I'd came in to purchase in the first place - needed a new hamper to go on the stairs, but they all looked too flimsy so I went with a trash can instead. Now I'm trying to convince myself to run up to the pool at 4pm today (when kid/open swim is finished) but I'm not getting very far with the idea... The neighbor lady's rheumatoid arthritis meds were changed and she's feeling pretty rough so she doesn't want to go, plus we had a quick switch in the weather - went from 90*+ days/70*+ nights to low 70* days and 50* nights in one day - which is giving MY joints fits. Hmmm, that might be a good reason to stay home; I bet they haven't adjusted the water temp at the pool yet, by Golly!! Or maybe I could just admit that I'd stay home and figure out something yummy to cook in the oven for supper - thinking baked steak with brown gravy, baked potatoes instead of mashed, biscuits.... then a batch of orange cranberry muffins for tomorrow; then cook some glazed carrots or green beans on the stove top to go with...

    Guess I'd better up and get to doing something before I talk myself into taking a nap

    Take care all; stay safe and have a great weekend!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2018
    Thanks for your reply, Renee. You apparently have more storage space than I do. Our cabin is only 1000 sq. ft. With only 2 bedrooms, our children have left the nest, so I took the extra bedroom for a pantry room. All 4 walls are lined with floor to ceiling shelving about 2 ft. deep. In my laundry room, I have cabinets, but the space is very limited. The 12 jugs of laundry detergent fill those, along with the same amount of jugs of dishwash, bath soap, and other odds and ends such as matches, extra cleaning rags, old sheets and towels.

    As for hanging my laundry indoors, I have three folding, wooden drying racks, but also use the door openings for hanging clothes hangers, like you. I also had DH to put hooks in the ceiling in the laundry room. I then took chains, and hung from them. The chains are used for hanging clothes hangers on, too. I have a clothes dryer, but seldom use it.

    I did take time out to clean out my kitchen drawers. There were things in those that I haven't used in years. Some of the stuff I had forgot about having. The trash can was full by the time I got it all done. I did the cabinets a while back, so they are already cleaned out. I plan on cleaning out closets when the weather turns cooler. At the change of each season, I've made a habit of doing closet cleaning.
    Last edited by SouthernBreeze; 09-23-2018 at 12:47 PM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Where fog and sun meet.
    I spent the week deep cleaning out the kitchen cupboards and found a gtreat Apple peeler corer that you clamp onto the counter. This is after I bought a hand Apple cider at Rosses two weeks ago! I finally was able to use the Excalibur dehydrates I bought in 2007.

    My husband is curmudgeonly and refused to let me use it due to his not liking dehydrated foods. Now eleven years later he is fine with it. So, I can use it when we stay at our tiny house on the coast that has on the grid power. It took too many amps here at our cabin. We use a small solar panel or generator for electric power. We can have lights and sparse use of the toaster.

    I canned stewed tomatoes, tomato sauce and harvested the last of the apples this week. I will be dehydrating the hot peppers and squash this week. I sorted out very expired canned goods and started labeling cupboards for myself and hubby.

    I will be starting my inventory this week as well. I am enjoying being retired!

  11. #11
    Congrats on your retirement, Siskiyoumom!!

  12. #12
    I've had problems with stored liquid laundry detergent leaking out over time. Since our current house is less than 700 square feet, I'm switching to soapnuts for laundry: they take little space, store forever, and have no icky ingredients.

    I'm trying to move away from using my dryer; nothing outside yet, I have a drying rack and several over-the-door clothes hangers, but I *love* your idea, Renee, about the closet rods in doorways! My husband is tall so I couldn't use them in any door he would need to go through but they would work in the spare room closet door. I do have an extra shower curtain rod to put behind the regular one over the tub if needed.


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