Sunday, February 26, 2017

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Computer In The Shop

My laptop had issues this week so it's in the shop. I am lucky that my Daughter has two tablets so I can at least check my email & the blog.I want to thank all of you for the almost 40,000 hits! Amazing! Hopefully I will be back on here very soon working on something bigger than an envelope.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Child Survival Skills - The Survival Mom

32 Survival Skills Your Child Should Know And Be Able To Do ASAP!

Knowledge is something that takes time to develop, so we need to start teaching the next generation now.  In case God forbid, our children are left to fend for themselves or we are injured or even just to make your family more apt to survive, every child must learn these survival skills so they can pull their own weight and contribute as much as they can.
It’s not just physical survival we need to teach them but mental, emotional, and spiritual survival as well. If your family learns now to be a well oiled machine, you will be more likely to survive any type of collapse.
  1. Grow vegetables from seeds. This isn’t the easiest skill to master and you’ll need expert advice.
  2. Have local edible and medicinal plant foraging skills. This book is a must-have for foraging beginners.
  3. Knowledge of dietary needs and how to meet them using wild plants and game
  4. Make a fire and know fire safety
  5. Cook on an open fire
  6. Open a can of food with and without can opener (rub can lid ridge on cement and then pry open with knife)
  7. Be able to tell if food is too spoiled to eat
  8. How to safely use a knife
  9. How to shoot a sling shot
  10. How to hunt small game with snares, traps and sling shot
  11. How to fish and hunt, using  a bow and gun when old enough
  12. How to clean fish and wild game
  13. Find water and identify if it’s safe to drink
  14. Filter and boil water to drink
  15. Basic first aid
  16. Basic hygiene practices
  17. Find or build a shelter in the wilderness
  18. How to stay warmcool, and dry in the elements
  19. How, why and when to stay hidden
  20. Self defense
  21. How to make a basic weapon and how to use it
  22. Be able to run and walk a good distance and be in generally good shape
  23. How to climb a tree to get away from predators, get directional bearings, and hunt
  24. How to read a map and use a compass
  25. How to read the sky for directions, time and approaching bad weather
  26. Know where family and friends live if they need to find them
  27. How to sew so they can mend clothing or any fabric and even make things such as bags or scrap quilts
  28. How to barter and trade (Kids naturally do this with their toys so teach them at garage sales.)
  29. How to be responsible for themselves and to be aware of their surroundings at all times
  30. Have a natural curiosity and good problem solving skills
  31. Be hard working and a self starter and a family helper not a complainer!
  32. Have a strong faith in God (morals, memorize Bible verses, prayers, songs, and have a hope for heaven). Ultimately, everyone reaches a point in which their physical, mental, and emotional abilities are completely taxed. Spiritual survival can make the difference between giving up and finding strength from somewhere to hang in there, just one day at a time.

How do your kids stack up? For more kid-friendly skills lists, check these out:

Baker Creek

Don't forget to join us March 5th for our first Heritage Days Festival of 2017! Lots of fun for the whole family! Including foot-stomping music, vendors, Mrs Gettle's famous cinnamon rolls, lunch at our gourmet restaurant and lots of seeds! We hope ya'll will join us!

Becoming More Self

84 Tutorials To Help You Become More Self Sufficient

Food & Recipes

17 Foods To Buy Once And Regrow Forever – Never buy these 17 foods again, simply buy once and regrow them from their cuttings, leaving you with an abundance of food all year round!
How To Start Canning – Canning is a wonderful way to preserve foods when they are in season so you can have them throughout the year. Make the most of your crops by turning them into delicious sauces, pickles, jams, jellies…the list keeps on going.
How To Pickle Anything – Making crisp, crunchy pickles is a quick and easy way to extend the shelf life of your harvest. With just a few ingredients you can make your own with this simple recipe!
Homemade Apple Chips – Creating delicious, natural snacks needn’t be complicated or expensive. This simple recipe will make crunchy treats from your own home grown apples.
How To Make Cheddar Cheese – Nothing beats a grilled cheese sandwich, apart from using your own cheese. With this full tutorial anyone will be able to make their own tasty make.
How To Wax Cheese – You’ve got the cheese, now you need to store it till you want to eat it. This straightforward tutorial will show you how you can wax cheese and easily prolong it’s shelf life!
How To Make Mozzarella – Bet you never realized you can make your own mozzarella? Well you can and it’ll only take you 30 mins…which is not time at all. You’ll find out everything you need to know at this great tutorial.
Make Your Own Butter From Milk – Butter is a simple item that can be made at home by anyone. Now you won’t have to head to the store and can take your self sufficiency to the next level
50+ Canning Recipes – This is one of, if not the, simplest way to store your food. It will maen you can enjoy summer foods in the middle of winter. Can everything from sauces and vegetable to jellies and pie fillings.
How To Dry Herbs Without Electricity – Dried herbs are not just a great addition to your recipes, but also a beautiful piece of decor that will add a natural fragrance to any room they’re hanging in.
How To Can Chicken – Canning’s not just for fruits and vegetables, with this tutorials you’ll see how to keep your chicken meat fresher for longer. You’ll be surprised at how easy it is
101+ Dehydrating Recipes – Dehydrating is the removal of moisture from foods to allow for better preservation and long term storage. Dried foods are so versatile… they can be incorporated into meals, packed up for emergencies or taken along on a family camping trip!
Make A Food Storage Shelf – The easiest way to keep vegetables fresh is to allow air to circulate round them. This simple DIY will provide you with much needed storage for your produce but will also help it remain garden fresh a lot longer.
How To preserve Your Eggs – With this amazing tip you’ll be able to preserve your eggs for up to 9 months worry free. So whenever you end up with a surplus of eggs keep them fresh till your ready to eat them!

Garden & Crops

Gardening 101 – Before you start you plant any crops this simple guide will make sure you can get the most out of the space you have available.
How To Maintain A Healthy Vegetable Garden – It may seem like a difficult task at times…what with the plethora of illnesses and harmful insects about. However with this great post keeping your veggies healthy has never been easier.
10 Fruits & Vegetables That Regrow Every Year – Most of the fruits and vegetables we grow are annuals which means you have to replant them every spring, whereas with this amazing list you can plant them once and enjoy them forever.
Build A 300 Square Foot Windproof Hoop House For Under $500 – This tutorial takes you on a simple step-by-step journey so you can build your own huge hoop house!
42 Flowers You Can Eat – When planting your garden you don’t just have to plant fruits and vegetables to be self sufficient, these scrumptious flowers will look pretty in the yard and on your plate too!
Know Your Growing Zone – It’s important to know what your growing zone is as that may effect your crop or even what you can grow. Knowing your zone means know what you can plant and when.
How to Build and Plant a Square Foot Garden – Square foot gardening may be a new concept to you but it’s one you’ll soon become familiar with. It’s the easiest way to maximize food growth within your growing season.
How To Extend Your Growing Season – Just because spring and summer don’t seem long enough to grow all the food you want. With this fantastic post you’ll be able to significantly extend your growing season.
DIY Cold Frame – Enjoy tasty winter harvests with these simple and easy to build cold frames which can be made from upcycled materials too.
Garden Maintenance Calendars – Know what to do and when to do it with this straightforward calendar that everyone who has a garden should be familiar with.
How To Grow 100 Lbs Of Potatoes In 4 Square Feet – Potatoes are one of the easiest foods to grow and with this amazingly simple DIY you can maximize your produce in a minimal amount of space. A few of these and you’ll grow more than enough potatoes to feed the whole family.
Top 10 Gardening Mistakes Your Need To Avoid – Gardening takes a lot of hard work and dedication and is extremely rewarding, unless you make one of these simple mistakes. Make sure you know what NOT to do for a stunning yard.
DIY Natural Pesticide – This completely natural and organic pesticide requires just two abundant and cheap natural ingredients and will help keep aphids, white flies, spider mites and other unwelcome insects away from your plants.
How To build A $50 Greenhouse – Greenhouses are ideal for starting seeds, extending growing seasons or just a suitable work space. If you really want to go self sufficient you’ll need one…but don’t spend a fortune on it.
How To Build A Hoop House – With this simple design you’ll be able to protect individual planters or plant beds. Ideal fr those plants that aren’t as hardy as the others in your garden.
3 Killer Ways To Get Rid Of Weeds Naturally – These simple ideas will make it easy for you to get rid of weeds quickly and easily. With one of these ideas you won’t have to even to go to the shops!
How To Store Root Vegetables For Winter – Keep your crops garden fresh well into the colder months with this simple solution. Straightforward and easy it’s perfect for everyone to try.
Companion Planting 101 – Learn which plants you should plant together and which to avoid to promote a natural and organic garden.

Livestock & Bee Keeping 

Raising Cattle – Find out the risks and benefits of raising cattle on a limited amount of land. With an in-depth look at what you really need to consider you’ll find out whether cattle are right for you or not.
Build A Chicken Coop – Keeping chickens is a great source of meat or alternatively you can just keep them for the fresh eggs. With this simple DIY you’ll have a reliable and sturdy coop to house them.
How To Care For Chickens – Looking after chickens is easy if you know what to do, so make sure you read this fantastic post if you’re considering getting any. A happy chicken means more eggs for you!
Become A Beekeeper – If you want to enjoy your own home grown honey then this simple post will teach you everything you need to know to become a beekeeper. You won’t regret it for a second.
How To Set Up A Beehive – Bees are important to the ecosystem of any garden and will help fertilize your plants whilst making you delicious and tasty Honey…I’d say that’s a win win!
How To Increase Egg Production – There’s no need to have loads of chickens if a few will just do. With these amazing tips you’ll be able to
maximize egg production whilst keeping your chickens happy and comfortable!
Fish For Food – Fish can be raised on a small scale to meet your needs or even on a larger scale to sell. Not only will the fish be a pleasant addition to your food stocks they’ll also supplement your income.
10 Tips For Raising Goats – Whether you’re raising them for meat or milk these top tips will make it easier to care for and understand your goats.
How To Grow Your Own Animal Feed – Feeding your animals can be an expensive endeavor however you can grow your own delicious feed for them and make the most of all your crops.
How To Trim Goats Hooves – With full step by step photography you’ll be able to learn exactly what you have to do when it comes to trimming your goats hooves.
How To Build A Simple Goat Feeder – The straightforward design of this feeder means that it’s easy to make and can be done from reclaimed materials!

Herbal Remedies

Headache Healing Balm – These days we’re all a little too quick to grab the pharmaceuticals, but do we really know whats in them? This simple recipe uses completely natural ingredients to help cure your headache and keep unnecessary toxins from your body.
Raspberry Antioxidant Cordial – This tasty drink will make a welcomed addition to any home and takes no time at all to make. Packed full of vitamins and minerals it will give you the boost you need.
5 Healing DIY Soap Recipes – These soaps will help ease morning sickness, relieve stress and anxiety or even clean cuts and wounds in a flash. No need for hundreds of products when just a few will do!
27 Medicinal Plants – With these 27 plants growing in your yard you’ll be surprised at how many ailments you can heal in no time at all. All you have to do is plant them.
Food Cures You Can Grow At Home – Grow your own medicines and salves with this list of plants that can be used fr any number of cures. Plant it, grow it, use it…it’s that simple!
How To Naturally Remove Warts – Not only are warts hideous but they can also be quite contagious. Whenever you get a wart get rid of it as soon as possible with this simple natural trick!
Getting Started With Essential Oils – Take care of all sorts of illness’ with essential oils for a more natural way to keep you as fit as a fiddle.
24 Natural Ways To Get Rid Of Canker Sores – Canker sores are painful for anyone when they appear but with these simple, natural ideas you’ll be able to get rid of them in no time at all!
19 Bizarre Home Cures That Work – You’ll  be amazed at how many ailments you can cure at home, you’ll be even more amazed at what you can use to cure them.
Medical Benefits Of Beeswax – Helps resolve diarrhea, hiccups, it’s anti-inflammatory and can also help lower cholesterol, making this an all round must have for any medicine cabinet.
3 First Aid Skills Everyone Should Learn – With full tutorials you’ll be able to learn these three life saving tips that could come in handy one day.

Survival & Prep

10 Ways To Cook Your Food When The Powers Out – Whether you’re still hooked to the grid or your producing your own power it’s not always reliable…but you still have to eat. Find out how to cook your food when the powers out.
A ‘Just In Case’ Three Day Emergency Meal Plan – Snowed in, hurricanes, tornadoes, earth quakes…. you just don’t know what’s around the corner. Make sure you’re ready with this simple emergency meal plan which anyone can put together.
Emergency Preparedness For Storms, Tornadoes & Hurricanes – Plan for the worst hope for the best…there’s no harm having a plan and if you live in an area which often has problems with any of these three reading this may just save your life.
11 Emergency Food Items That Can Last a Lifetime – Whatever you’re storing food for these 11 items will last a life time if stored properly. So don’t waste money on items that go off, spend you money of these emergency foods that will last.
Simple DIY Button Lamp – With just a few easy to find items you can make a source of heat and light. It’s one of the simplest lamps anyone can make…anyone can make on of these in just a few seconds.
One Log Rocket Stove – With juts a small log you can create your own stove, which you can use to cook a delicious hot meal on or else you can enjoy the warmth and light it provides. This top tip is great for those that love to camp too.
Prepping On A Budget – Preparing for every eventuality can be an expensive undertaking…but if you make sure you’re prepping properly it won’t cost anywhere near as much as you’d think!
Olive Oil Lamp – With just a few items that you’ll already have, you can put together a lamp in no time at all. All you’ll need to do is top up the oil to make it work as long as you need it!
Food Storage Without Electricity – You don’t need electricity to keep your food fresh, people did it for hundreds of years before fridges and freezers were invented…so why can’t you?
80 Emergency Supplies To Stock Up On – If you have supplies ready and waiting, you won’t need to rely on anyone when disaster strikes. These are the 80 items you should be stock piling!
11 Ways To Cook Off Grid Without Power – Whether you’re in an emergency or if you don’t want to rely on electricity for a tasty meal then these fantastic ideas are perfect!
Winter Preparedness – These amazing tips will tell you exactly how to prepare your homestead for the colder months. With everything from money saving ideas to getting your livestock ready this post has it all!

Green Home

How To Build A Solar Thermal Heater – Build this super efficient water heating system to produce hot water and help reduce your bills. With full step by step instructions this simple DIY will make a noticeable difference in anyone’s home.
DIY Bio Fuel Briquettes – Building your own bio fuel is easier than you’d think. With just a few items you can create briquettes that will fuel your fire longer than most store bought alternatives. A must try!
How to Build a Totally Self-Sustaining Home – This no-nonsense guide gives you the basics on how to build a completely self-sustaining home and how anyone can live self sufficiently!
How To Build Your Own Solar Power System – Learn everything you need to know with this comprehensive guide to be able to create your own solar power system!
Amazing Secret Way To Get Free Solar Panels – With this amazing tip you could end up with hundreds of dollars worth of free panels which you can then use to create your own electricity!
How To Make A Solar Heater – With just a few easy to find materials and some upcycled cans you can create a heater which will keep any room warm for free. Works entirely off of the sun so it doesn’t need to be hooked up to electricity.
7 Must Have Products For A Green Home – Going green doesn’t just mean solar power and less waste, it’s also important to make sure you avoid toxic chemicals in your home. But with just these 7 products you can replace a ton of toxic store bought alternatives!
Off Grid Refrigeration – Don’t want to be hooked into the grid? Then these simple ideas will help you keep food and drinks cold without running up a ridiculously large electricity bill.
Off Grid Alternatives To Kitchen Tools – You’re off the grid but you’ve still got to eat. These simple and easy to make alternatives will help you make food just as delicious as always.
Homemade Laundry Soap – Laundry is not the funnest of chores but it’s a necessity, with this amazing tutorial you’ll be able to make your own natural soap which will clean your clothes as well as any store bought alternatives!
DIY Solar Panel From Solar Yard Lights – With this amazingly impressive DIY you’ll be able to transform everyday solar lights from your garden into a source of energy for your home.
41 Eco-Friendly Ways To Save Money – With these simple and straightforward money saving tips you’ll be able to reduce your outgoings making your life easier.
10 Tips For Using Less Water – Not only will you save on your bills but using less water means you can rely less on the grid… perfect for everyone who wants to go self sufficient!
Portable Solar Generator – This simple DIY will allow you to have a portable generator that will always work. No need to connect up to the grid at all with this ingenious build that anyone can do.
DIY Grow Lamps – Perfect for your seedlings and promoting growth in your plants under a light bulb, this easy DIY can be recreated quite simply!
Homesteading Supplies You Can Get At The Dollar Store – Homesteading can seem like an expensive and daunting task but with these budget friendly purchases it’ll become significantly more affordable!
Why It Pays To Spend – Sometimes parting with a little more cash is worth it in the long run. Whether it’s for a much needed tool or a better quality of livestock feed you’ll find that you could be more successful if you spend just a little more cash.
Natural Stove Top Cleaner – Using just a few ingredients you can make your own stove top cleaner which is completely natural and doesn’t rely on toxic chemicals.

Chicken Breeds

Manna Pro Chicken Breeds PosterOne of the many reasons chicken keepers like you and I begin to keep chickens in our backyards is for the eggs. Fresh eggs cannot be beat. Not only do they taste better, but they are much more nutritious and fresher than their grocery store counterparts.
As your flock continues to grow during the first few months of their life, you will notice that around four to five months of age they will begin to look like actual mature chickens. Until female chickens are one year of age they are called pullets. Pullets typically begin to lay eggs as early as twenty weeks of age. However, you might happen to notice that the larger breeds tend to begin laying eggs closer to six months of age.
When a pullet begins to lay her first eggs they will be small. You will notice that with each progressive egg laid, they gradually increase in size. Finally, after a few months of regular egg laying, the pullet's eggs will reach their full size. If you watch closely, your pullets will give you clues when they are close to laying their very first eggs.
First, you might notice that their wattles and combs begin to turn from pink to dark red. You might also notice them testing out the nesting boxes. Sometimes you will catch a pullet sitting in the nesting box as if she is waiting for something to arrive. You might even hear her sing the egg song, which is a continued cackle.  If there is still no egg, don’t worry!  All of these behaviors are completely normal and is the pullet's way of practicing for the big day!
At around eighteen weeks of age, the nutritional needs for egg laying pullets change. At this time, the flock should be transitioned from a grower feed to a layer feed. Pullets around this age should also be introduced to calcium. There are few forms of calcium. Simply place the oyster shells in a small hanging metal dish in the run. This way the chickens can take in a little extra calcium when they need it. Calcium is very important and helps to keep the eggshells strong and thick. Even though hens will lay most of their eggs during their first two years of life, you can expect eggs from older hens as well. Their egg laying just becomes a bit more sporadic.
Eggs are rich in protein and require a great deal of energy from the hen to make approximately every 26 hours. Eggs also contain minerals and vitamins essential to our diets. One of the most wonderful things about caring for our backyard chickens is that we can fortify our flock's diet for their optimal health, nutrition, and plumage. But that is not all. Did you know that what we feed our flock can end up directly in their eggs? Talk about you are what you eat!
Over the years there has been much research into the benefits of a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Researchers have determined that consuming omega-3 fatty acids a few times per week can decrease triglyceride levels as well as help with arthritis symptoms such as stiffness and joint pain. Preliminary research into omega-3 fatty acids may also show promise in helping other diseases such as depression, asthma, Alzheimer's disease, and attention deficit disorder.
There are many ways to introduce omega-3 fatty acids as well as beneficial vitamins and minerals to your flock's diet. In fact, just by having access to green grass and other chicken-safe plantings you're helping to provide those dietary requirements. But sometimes, all day free-ranging is not realistic or possible. Such times might include: your chicken keeping environment, threat of predators, when you go on vacation, or even during the winter time when snow blankets the ground. This is when specially formulated supplements are perfect. This feed supplement is sprinkled on top of the chickens' regular feed. It’s a great way to boost their overall nutrition as well as their gastrointestinal health through the use of direct feed microbials. Plus, it’s an easy way to ensure that those omega-3 fatty acids are readily available for hens to include in their eggs.
Chickens that are fed a complete and balanced diet will provide you with a regular supply of eggs during the early years of their lifetime. Egg laying peaks during the Spring and Summer months and often will slow down during the Fall molt and the Winter months. By providing your flock with at least 14 hours of daylight, keeping them free from stress, and providing them with proper nutrition, they will thank you in the best way they know how, by providing you with fresh eggs ready for harvest each and every morning.

Nesting Box Ideas

My coop (the Coop-de-Villa) is in need of repair so I have been looking around at cheap ways to completely start over to rebuild.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Dad/Daughter Dinner Date

   Last night our school district had it's annual Father/Daughter dance. My crew went last year, but when the flyer came home a few weeks ago neither one of them seemed too interested in going stating there was too much noise & it was terribly crowded. Dad wanted her to still feel like they had gone out so the plan was made. They would go out to dinner together & I would do their picture before they left just like I did last year. She wanted to wear a skirt since she wore a floor length dress before.
   I took their picture & off they went. As they were going down the drive I thought what a good Dad Jim is & how she has turned in to a really cool kid. She won't be a kid for too many more years so that is what makes these kind of events so special. I have an hour of quiet & I do not have to cook dinner tonight.....

Apple VS Cookie

We must be doing something right.  Our Daughter just walked by a tray of freshly baked oatmeal choc.chip cookies & reached for an apple. Not too bad for a 7 yr. old.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Sometimes Having A Hoarder Husband Comes In Handy

  Sometimes, as I have said before living with two pack rats is enough to drive me crazy on a daily basis. My main plan for this spring is to have a garage sale, even tho I said I'd never have another one.I feel the need to clear out things that we just don't need. That being said, I have had two projects this week that I asked my Husband for help in coming up with shelving & bolts. True to his hoarding style he had just what I needed in his treasure trove of STUFF. So I guess I have to eat crow & admit that SOMETIMES it's good to have someone who seems to save everything. Now, if I just felt the same way about all of the toy pieces my Daughter refuses to throw out....

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Is This Real Medicine?

   I guess I do live in the past, especially when it comes to something as important as health care. I was very lucky to meet a Man in 1972 who would not only be our family Dr.,but became a friend & mentor.
   A.S. was a very caring Man who always followed up on every case to make sure that everything was alright. I could call him day or night if one of us was sick. One of my children  always got very high fever's that sometimes lasted for days & after so many emergency room visits he made sure I knew what to do & had everything I needed. He'd say "you can do this Denise" no matter what the situation was & it gave me the confidence to take care of my families medical needs more & not rely on having to get somewhere if there was an issue. More times than not if one of us came down sick I would call him, tell him what was going on & he'd call in meds. or give directions on what to do. No waiting for days to get into the office. He made sure I had supplies on hand at all times
  When he retired in the mid 1980's we were still friends who would run into each other at the book store sometimes & he was always make sure to ask how the kids were & ask if we needed anything.That was long ago & things have sure changed.
   Now there seems to be no more personal interaction with any of the Dr's we go to. There was a medical test this week that was a very big deal. Instead of the Dr. who preformed it calling or at least someone from his office it was left to the primary's office to call & instead of details the conversation was more like "your test results are good, but let us know if you still have problems." OK, something must be causing the ongoing issues. Don't you think we ought to dig further & see what might be causing them? It's almost like we are suppose to not only diagnose  but also heal ourselves.
   As my Husband & I age we are going to have more & more things go wrong. We do our very best to take care of ourselves, but if & when we do need a Dr. it would be nice to feel like they are at least concerned & not rushing us thru. Is this what medicine has become?

Thursday, February 2, 2017

The Flu Is A Nasty Thing

   For the first time in my life I got a flu shot this last fall. Being the Mom to a 7 year old who daily brings home God only knows what school germs made me really think about how serious the flu can be to old folks like her Dad & myself. Even tho we always got her one Jim & I kept finding excuses not to. So, after much thought & hearing how bad it can be when you get to be OUR AGE we went & got flu & pneumonia shots.
   So, I guess you can understand why I'm a bit upset that this week guess what I have been got it THE FLU. Chills, high fever, runny nose, barking cough, upset stomach, yes I had it all. I was completely down for a couple of days & am still not feeling well.
   I know, there are strains the shot doesn't cover, but you'd at least think that it would have mercy on me since I just got mt first one. Now I really worry about a pandemic, as if I wasn't worried enough before. If the vaccines aren't effective how are we suppose to survive a major flu  or any other outbreak? No shoes in the house, tons of hand washing & sanitizer didn't seem to help around here. There has got to be a better way to stay well.