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my ad for some extra HK 91 and HK93 parts, magazines

To be prepared for a crisis, every Prepper must establish goals and make long-term and short-term plans. Steadily, we work on meeting our prepping goals. In this column, the SurvivalBlog editors review their week’s prep activities. They also often share their planned prep activities for the coming week. These range from healthcare and gear purchases to gardening, property improvements, and food storage. This is something akin to our Retreat Owner Profiles, but written incrementally and in detail, throughout the year. We always welcome you to share your own successes and wisdom in the Comments. Let’s keep busy and be ready!

Jim Reports:

Between my writing, helping Lily in the greenhouse, ranch chores, patching a pond liner, and some mail-order biz, I’ve had a very busy week!

I’ve been overwhelmed by the response to my ad for some extra HK 91 and HK93 parts, magazines, and accessories, at The FALFiles Marketplace. The large number of orders has meant making a few extra trips to mail out packages, at the local post office. Thank goodness for Priority Mail Flat Rate boxes. Mailing heavy items like steel HK magazines (as many as 23 magazines per box) has been a bargain, with flat rate pricing.  still have about 30 more pre-packaged lots to sell and mail out, so this project will continue for another couple of weeks. Note that I keep adding items to my “want to sell” list.  For example, I just added two rare original German-made HK91/93 bipods: One light and one heavy!

One of my other projects this week was re-attaching a couple of cedar plank shelves, in our greenhouse.  Lily had found that they were a bit too high for her liking. I lowered them both about 10 inches, and now they are in easy reach for her. I’ve also been hauling rocks, soil, and manure. One fairly fun project this week was using our pickup and a heavy tow chain to drag an excavated stump out to a burn pile that is not close to any trees. (It was too heavy for an ATV to move.) Every serious prepper needs to own at least one tow chain. (But there is more versatility if you own two. And, of course, remember: “Two is one and one is none.”)

Avalanche Lily Reports:

Dear Readers,

Where has this week gone?  The weather was cool and rainy for the beginning of the week and only warmed up on Thursday.  And now we are back to rain showers.

This week I harvested a gallon’s worth of Rhubarb, chopped and froze it.

In the Main garden, I roto-tilled for the seventh time the chicken-manured bed and planted all of my tomato seedlings: reds, yellows, purples, orange cherry, etc.  I planted three more rows of potatoes.  This brings my total, so far of 11 rows (each 30-feet long) of potatoes planted. I planted five rows of broccoli, both seedlings and seeds.  I spread more straw between the new beds and around some of the larger seedlings.

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I roto-tilled the section for a third time, where I planted the potatoes and broccoli.  I had the girls out there picking rocks from this bed, yet again.  The reason why there are so many rocks in this particular bed is that… we grow them!!  Seriously, every winter the cold frost and melting action brings them to the surface.  Also, about three or four years ago, Jim had to excavate a section of this part of the garden to run electrical lines and water pipes to our guest cabin and to add additional spigots that we placed in key spots around the ranch for easier watering of tree saplings, and to keep the area around our home damp during fire season.  This action brought many rocks to the surface that we just haven’t gotten rid of many of them. Since we live on an ancient glacial river valley, they are just everywhere.

I mowed the paths around the garden, again, and started to mow the orchard, yet, again.

I pulled weeds like crazy to stay ahead of them.  They are growing around the straw, and in between the small plants.  Once some of the plants are larger, I will be putting a lot more straw mulch around them.

I went and looked at the kitchen compost pile which has been in the building process for three years.  I put my shovel into it and turned it over.  Oh my goodness, the soil is so rich and broken down!  It’s lovely!  I am spreading it on three beds that still need to be planted and will be putting some of it aside in a large planter pot to be used for potting soil for next spring’s seedlings.

I spread some of this compost in another area of the main garden, roto-tilled it in. It is the fourth time this section has been roto-tilled. I planted it with Mandan flour corn, and mulched it with straw.  This will be the first time I have planted corn specifically for flour.  We’ll see how this grows, here.

The Annex garden has been put off yet again, this week.  Next week, for certain, I will get into it.

In the greenhouse, I filled three large planters with the kitchen compost and some surface soil from an unplanted bed and transplanted some of my butternut squash, Honeydew melon and Spaghetti squash seedlings into them and put them up on one of the plank shelves that Jim just lowered for me.

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I cleaned the chicken coop and brushed the horses.  Our hairy monster horse is still shedding copious amounts of hair, whiles the other horses are completely transitioned into their summer short-haired summer coats.

Along the Unnamed River that flows through the ranch, I have observed a small flock of about 20 Canada Geese that have taken up residence here.  Among the 20 or so birds are three pairs raising about 9 goslings between them.  I am able to observe them through one of our windows with binoculars.  One day this week as I was heading outside to do some work, I heard a loud commotion occurring down by the river. I saw a Bald Eagle trying to take one of the goslings and the parents fighting back at it.  I know that that is the natural way of things but I didn’t want that eagle to succeed. “Go eat fish, eagle. Leave those baby goslings alone.” So, I shouted  “Hey, Hey, POW, pow, pow!” as I ran down towards the river through the meadows.  The meadows are still flooded from snow melt and river overflow. I had to pass through seven-inch deep water, mud, and muck to get to the river’s edge.  I got soaked.

The eagle didn’t even fly off until I was only about 50 feet away, and then it just flew across the river, landed on a low tree, and looked at me.  It wasn’t even concerned with me.  So I skirted the poor geese who were now worried about me, and shouted, again, and waved my arms and “jumped” at the eagle numerous times.  Finally, it flew off up the river, but only a little ways, and landed high up in a tree.  Meanwhile, one of the parents was trying to get me to chase it up the river, while the other parent and the other two sets of parents/five adult geese and the nine goslings were heading down river.  I gave one final shout,  “Hey, hey, pow pow”, a few more jumps, while waving my arms at the eagle, who just looked at me with what was probably mild amusement, and then headed back down the river, but away from the bank so as not to scare the geese anymore than necessary.  I went back to my work and would occasionally look down toward the river to see if there was any more drama, but there wasn’t.  I think I gave a baby gosling another day of life.

May you all have a very blessed and safe week.

– Avalanche Lily, Rawles

o o o

As always, please share your own successes and hard-earned wisdom in the Comments.

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