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Today's Preps 07-29-09 to ........

by: Oremus

Sun Jul 26, 2009 at 09:37:32 AM EDT

So much to prep, so little time.
Oremus :: Today's Preps 07-29-09 to ........
At some point you have become convinced that having a few extra things on hand might be prudent.  This diary is to help you along that pathway.

Post, questions, bargain finds, information, advice, or anything else related to prepping.

There are a few old, out-of-date Diaries here, dating back to about 4 years ago, but let's start fresh...

What is the biggest hole in your preps?
Protective Equipment (masks etc.)
Electrical Backup
Alternative Cooking Sources


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40 year old pound cake still good

WASHINGTON - Forty years later, Henry A. Moak, Jr., still loves his pound cake.

The Army colonel popped open a military C-ration can of pound cake from 1969 at his retirement ceremony, and dug in.

Moak got the drab olive can as a Marine helicopter pilot off the Vietnamese coast in 1973. He vowed to hang on to it until the day he retired, storing it in a box with other mementos.

After a formal retirement ceremony, dozens of friends and relatives joined Moak in the Pentagon's Hall of Heroes as he opened the can to cheers. Moak joked earlier this week that he hoped the can wouldn't explode. It let off a whooshing sound as the pressure seal broke.

"It smells good," Moak said as he put a handful in his mouth. He jokingly staggered back a few feet and loudly cleared his throat, while one person yelled out, "Eeww, gross!"

Moak pronounced the cake "good."

"It's even a little moist," he said, wiping his mouth. He dared anybody "gutsy" enough to join him, and retired Lt. Gen. Paul T. Mikolashek, who was the U.S. Army Europe commander when Moak served overseas, took an even bigger piece.

"Tastes just like it always did," Mikolashek mumbled with a mouthful of cake as Moak laughed and clapped.

Moak said he wasn't worried about getting sick from any bacteria that may have gotten into the old can, because it looked sealed. But the military discourages eating from old rations.

"Given the risks ... we do everything possible to ensure that overly aged rations are not consumed," said Lawrence Levine, a spokesman for the Defense Supply Center in Philadelphia.

Levine named the threats as mold and deadly botulism if the sealing on the food has been broken, which isn't always visible.

Moak says though he warned his children over the years not to touch his pound cake, he did let them eat some other rations when they were growing up in the 1980s, including canned spaghetti and crackers.

And how did those taste? "Fine. Well ... not like from our great restaurants."

To calm the wife buy cases of chocolate, to calm the husband buy cases of booze, and to calm the children...... heck the booze and chocolate should work.

Canned Bread?
I've been looking for reasonably priced canned bread. I seen brown bread available through amazon, but has anyone else found another source? Without that, if we are without power, I will be cooking bread on the grill! :)  

Bread sources
I've bought from Maine Goodies, but there's another source listed here . . . I have several cases of it.  If you've never eaten it, it's a very heavy, dense bread that comes with or without raisins in it.  I like it and we dig out a can every once in a while just 'cause we want some - really good with a spread of some sort, or with beans or tuna, I think.  Thanks for the reminder that I might want to get another case or two!



[ Parent ]
Bread Sources

[ Parent ]
Electrical backup...
Oh, I have numerous batteries for flashlights and lamps, oil and propane lamps, backup heating (wood stove, kerosene stoves), and several means of backup cooking. But what I haven't got is something to keep the house electrical system running. No generator, no solar. To me a generator is just another make-do system, and means storing even more fuel, which will quickly run out. What I'd really like is a good solar system (I live in a climate where it makes sense), mainly for the refrigerator, the ceiling fans (I don't use air cooling), and as a long-term source of power for lighting and cooking. But thus far I've not gotten around to it, because of the expense, and because other things seemed more urgent. BTW, because of their vulnerability to power loss, I keep minimal stores in the refrigerator and freezer and plan on a marathon canning binge if things start to look dicy.

small electrical + water + meds
We're in a small first floor flat and have a couple of small solar panels for the balcony and several leisure batteries (including a couple of Weza's (there's some going cheap on eBay uk and amazon uk just now as the line has been discontinued now) http://www.freeplayenergy.com/...
These will be used to charge small electricals and rechargeable camping lanterns.
For more lighting we have plenty of wind-up lanterns and torches, as well as cyalumes and, as a last resort, candles.
For cooking we have a big supply of canned greenheat ecofuel.
Keeping warm in the event of winter power cuts might be a challenge but we're working on that!

Storing large amounts of water is a problem in our small space but it's not too much of a worry at the moment. Our backup is a lifesaver bottle - good for 40,000 litres (and there's a lake nearby!) http://www.lifesaversystems.com

OTC flu meds and prescription meds OK, though whether or nor to get hold of some tamiflu/relenza in advance is a (moral) dilemma - we might not ever need it but then again, if the Queen is taking a supply to Balmoral for summer then why shouldn't we have some too (we are all equal)?


[ Parent ]
40 year old C ration pound cake!
That does bring back memories to this old timer.

In 1966 to 1967 spent about 7 months living with a group of Green Berets in Song Be,  Phuoc Long Province, a great group of guys from the 5th Special Forces Group if I recall,  and learned to love Vietnamese food, but was not crazy about the food in the small mess hall, which was edible, but not great. Like some of the other guys, learned to hoard the occasional case of C rations which came our way.  Word got around that I liked the ham and lima beans, because no one else did! Also remember the pound cake!

Have six cases of MREs in my preps, so maybe time to try one or two and see how they stack up with my remembrance of C rations!

Like many of you I am sure, have let some preps expire or get used up.   Find it hard to get myself going again.  Think the last few years have burnt me out.

Experience has taught me that there are few conspiracies, but much incompetence

Home Medicine Cabinet
- Rx - Considering how nearly impossible it was to get antibiotics for my child's ear infection on the 4th of July, I told myself I don't ever want to feel that desperate, again.  I can only imagine a loved one lying in bed without treatment, during a pandemic ... I have taken care of it.

Meds for Pneumonia
I have Tamiflu but I need to get to my Dr. to see if he will give me two scrips for anitbiotics for Pneumonia.  I do not want to have to go out to get these even if they would be available.  Hope my Dr. will let me have them now.

I could consider myself short on eletrical but I do not want a generator.  Like said above you eventually run out of gas.  I don't want to worry about another item to stock.

I have some crank hand held lights and plenty of candles. I also have holders for the candles that are pretty safe.  But if TSHTF we need to be like old farmers go to bed when the sun goes down and get up when the sun comes up.

To be honest I do not think things will get so bad that we will be out of electric or water for too long.  However, meds will be hard to come by because so many will be ill.

Electrical backup
living in an apartment makes electric backup difficult. No place to store fuel for genset and not enough sun on small deck for solar or a place to store the batteries if we did. I have a small inverter to turn the car into ac power and cigg lighter adapters to charge some things. The laptop has a battery but I lose the internet when the power goes out because I have dsl and the box needs ac power. I could always pull the battery from the car and use the inverter to run the dsl box if I had to. Jon C

Pneumonia Shot
Flumom, get a pneumonia shot.  They last 5 years.  I'm very susceptible to pneumonia and bronchitis myself.   Since I got the pneumonia shot I have had bronchitis almost every time after I had the flu, that lasted 6 months (normal for me), but no pneumonia.  That's really been a blessing.

The only thing that seems to help the bronchitis is walking around in the sun for hours for several days (Vitamin D maybe?)  Don't know why, but it works better than antibiotics for me, since I have built up such a tolerance after all the bronchitis.

Pneumonia Shot
I should have said, get the pneumonia shot at the same place you get a flu shot, such as a drugstore or Costco. They will ask why you want it.  There seem to be two reasons, one, you are a caretaker of people in a high risk group such as the elderly, especially with health problems, or very small children, or you have had pneumonia in the past or are susceptible to it in some way.

In my case, I take care of elderly relatives who both have congestive heart failure, one has chronic bronchitis and one has an immune disorder (rheumatoid arthritis), as well as my own health issues, so they just give it to me.  Don't think they just necessarily hand it out to people without health issues, but they do take your word for it. It's not like having to argue with a doctor who doesn't want to provide healthcare, which I agree is very frustrating.

Shingles vaccine
My doc gave me a prescription for this when I passed the 60 mark in March so I'd been considering it since then. Dem made some encouraging comments a ways back so I finally got it last week.

I have some expired Tamiflu & Relenza from '06 or early '07 in my stash so I think that I'll just do with that.

Many of my canned food preps are not edible: cans rusted and the pop-top ones leaked. We've had so much rain up here in the NE I haven't had the courage to go down into the crawlspace and do an inventory. It's damp down there in dry weather. (ok, rant over ;-0)

I got the pneumovax earlier in the year as I also work with elderly folks and have some health issues of my own.

And most importantly, I guess, I stopped smoking about 3 years ago (tho I'm still chewing that nic gum off & on). I couldn't rationalize spending so much money & time on preps (solar panels, water bobs, sun cooker, Kelly kettle, grain grinder, water barrels, MRE's, etc.- things I would never have bought w/o the panflu threat) ...and then continue to raise my vulnerability by smoking.

{I have used most of my preps (above) at least a few times and they have over the years been a comfort knowing that they're there esp for power outages BUT... on most days I've felt that I went overboard. Not a good feeling.}

I still need a new computer- old one died last winter so I use this iPhone. Definitely not easy for posting here..for me, at least. It's faster than dial-up tho! which is all I have available here.

And a part of my preps has been to continue to be available to neighbors if they want to talk about panflu issues. I got them all together a few years ago and gave the ones w/ kids Dr Woodson's & Will Stewarts books. I'm sure they thought that I was totally nuts, & only one, a nurse, has been in touch since this appeared this spring. He has been very worried. Absolutely no questions/contact from sisters or brothers re flu. (bird-dog shakes her head)

I have bought many boxes of BBRWFK & continue to rotate in 'n out. What a chore!

I need more dog, cat, n parrot food! " always"

ps. SusanC, how is your pup? Now that was an excellent security prep. I hope s/he worked out & is still with you.  

Bailing wire
Buy one box of it.  A box of bailing wire is very heavy, but you won't regret it.  Very, very useful stuff.  On par with duct tape.  I'm not joking.  The uses are almost endless when used with a bit of imagination.

Baling wire and baling twine
are both incredibly useful. I also have a lot of JB Weld, as it will repair anything from cracked engine blocks to cracked pipes to damaged cookware.

I'm making a quick "town run" today just to top off a few things. We've hit the peanut butter hard lately (kids' summer fav) and it's time to add more staples like sugar and salt.

My plan is to be totally "ready" by September 1st. We've already decided to homeschool this year again, so I have more curriculum on order. We were planning to send the kids to a private school, but decided to wait another year due to the pandemic threat.

I'm feeling okay about our prep level. The gardens are doing really well. We have lots to can, freeze and dehydrate. Our "meats on the hoof" are ready to go the the butcher and the laying hens are mature and laying well.

[ Parent ]
My Whole Family Has The Shot
My whole family had the Pneumonia shot but if you look at 1918 many died of pneumonia and I just want to make sure I have the meds if I need them.  I have a Dr that trusts me not to use a med in the wrong way.  So I will still try to get the meds I need.

I feel good about our preps
I feel good about our preps
What I worry most is we are not self sufficient enough.  We have done little things to move in that direction but we are just too depended on the outside world and if things last more than 12 months then I am worried....

If we never loose power I have a good 12 month supply, I have big freezers.  Without power I am good for about 6 months.  I have 2 generators (small & big) and fuel for them and we have worked out ways to stretch if we loose power.  To keep the freezers going we will go with out any other power source.  We have alternate for cooking; lights, radio & etc.  The small gem is a Honda and runs real quite, we already have stuff to build the box so folks will not hear it.  Here in NC it gets hot and it gets cold but lucky it is not so cold or hot we could not adjust and live with it  

Preps in a Box ....
My son, stationed on a military base here in the US, got really sick last week.  Lots of flu going around, but they aren't really testing for H1N1 any more (if they ever were).  They just confined him to quarters until his fever declined.  He told his barracks-mates that he was sick, and kept his distance.

He had some preps, but I sent him the following in a flat-rate Priority box:

Earloop (surgical) masks to protect his barracks-mates
Guaifenesin tablets (expectorant)
Ricolla cough suppressant lozenges
Digital thermometer
Gatorade powder (in lieu of ORS)
2 microwave soups
2 microwave dinners (shelf-stable)
Cereal bars
Protein bars

Obviously, I was trying to keep him fed & medicated for a few days to reduce his trips into the general population.  So given the constraints of stuffing preps into a flat-rate box, what should I have added or subtracted?

UPDATE:  by Monday  (day 4), the fever had declined, although the cough was worse. To keep him out of an office situation, they assigned him to clean-up duty outdoors.  There is logic in there somewhere.  So far, his barracks-mates seem healthy, but it's too soon to tell.

The only flu
H1N1 is the only flu currently in circulation in the US, unless something's changed recently.  If he had the flu, he had H1N1, would be my guess.

Clean up duty outdoors?  If he's still sick, he's got no business doing any work at all.  If the cough is worse, working outdoors in summer heat is not the right thing to do.

Not a bad package to send - I'd probably have sent more soup and skipped the nuts, and I'd have sent Tamiflu and some antibiotics if I had any.

I'm dismayed to learn he wasn't put into any kind of isolation area or quarrantine.  Wouldn't be surprised if they have more cases wherever he is in the next week or so
He should have been isolated, and everything he touched should still be being disinfected.  Four days isn't long enough to act as though there weren't someone around with a very infectious disease.

You probably should tell him to be very careful about any kind of recurrence or worsening of symptoms - sometimes this seems to follow a pattern of illness, some improvement, and then being sicker than to begin with - that's why I'm thinking that putting him to work outside was a really bad idea.

[ Parent ]
Working outside

I completely agree on working outside in the summer heat, but the military works in mysterious ways.  He's bringing extra water and gatorade, but obviously, he can't refuse.

I'll remind him of the problem with recurrence of this flu.  I told him once, but now that he most likely has it, I'll bet I have his full attention.

I'll also ask him to suggest they disinfected his regular work area.  Most likely ... not going to happen.

Also agree on quarantine or isolation, but I think the flu may already be endemic on his base (and many other bases).  They just sent him home and told him to go to medical only if he got worse.  Not a bad idea, since I'm sure they don't separate the sick from the well (or from the pregnant), and I don't want him to spread it to others.

[ Parent ]
I hope
The recovers quickly with no problems.

I suspect the flu has made its way onto a lot of bases, for sure.   I saw an article earlier about a school in Havelock, NC, with cases - that's the home of Cherry Point, largest Marine Air Station - and Cherry Point is less than 100 miles from Camp Lejeune, another large base.

They have year 'round schools there - we used to live about 20 miles from Cherry Point.  I think the outbreak at a school there in the middle of the summer (very hot and humid climate, if you're not familiar with the area) is an indicator of what we can expect to see this fall as soon as they open schools.

I don't think it's going to be pretty, and that might well be when we start hearing those in power say some of the things we've thought for a long time they should say.  At that point, they may not have any alternative, if we see the kinds of outbreaks in schools that many camps experienced over the summer.

[ Parent ]
Prep Box
I think I would have added Immodium (some people with this flu get the runs) and Kleenex. Maybe dried fruit, nuts or packaged peanut butter and crackers? Something less sugary than candy. Lipton used to make 1 serving packages of instant chicken soup that would be easy if he has access to hot water.  Don't know if that applies though. Maybe if he had a thermos somebody could bring him hot water. Then he could have tea bags too.

Hope he recovers soon!

Preps in a Box
Actually, he has access to a microwave and a mini-kitchen.  I did include Pepto, forgot to include that in the original list.

Tea, broth, and peanut butter would have been a good idea.  M&Ms just sounded good at the time.

Thank you for your suggestions!

[ Parent ]
For finicky appetite, applesauce in 1-serving cups,
dried apples, candied ginger?

"The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it."  Flannery O'Connor

[ Parent ]
Good idea?
Presumably vomiting and diarrhoea are the body's way of expelling the pathogen - is it a good idea to artificially prevent this?  

[ Parent ]
I don't know if it helps during the flu,
but with food poisoning it probably does.  

There's a stage in recovery when the patient is somewhat better but nothing "sounds good" when offered.  Think of a person rescued from starvation, maybe after being lost for many days.  A steak dinner isn't going to sit easy on his stomach, but noodle soup or applesauce might be a good first step in beginning to eat again.  (jmo as a layperson)

"The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it."  Flannery O'Connor

[ Parent ]
Sorry, my mistake, was talking about Peptobismol and Imodium.

[ Parent ]
good job, mom!
From the viewpoint of someone sick on the couch (thankfully, NOT the flu!), your "care box" sounds wonderful!

I think the nuts and m&m's are a great addition- perfect for when you start to feel just a little bit better and don't think you can stand one more cup of broth. ;-)

As far as anyone making future boxes- I second the addition of "cup o' soup".  It takes up very little room and if it isn't used, it will keep for a very long time.

I might also add a couple of Kleenex pocket packs and some germ-x wipes, just because those are two of my favorite things. (The wipes are perfect for being a good neighbor and wiping down communal surfaces after use.)

And, lastly, something along the lines of Vick's Vap-o-Rub, just because it is so nice to be able to take a breath when your head is full of snot.

We're taking a big step today (I hope)
We have a good prospective buyer for our seven bedroom house and farm. Meanwhile, we found our "perfect" final place: a much smaller house on 450 acres. It has everything we need for SIP including wells that run by windmill or handpump (in addition to a regular electric well for the house). We're cautiously excited.

The only hard part will be moving from such a huge house with tons of room for my preps to a much smaller place. We'll have to really get creative with storage. I guess one of the horse barns will end up being storage for non-perishable preps.

I'm excited, I have to admit. I've been waiting a long time for this.

Big Step
How exciting!  Now THAT is a prep I would like to be making! Am very envious and hope all goes well with your move.  

[ Parent ]
Preps in a Box
Today I went to Food 4 Less.  They are owned by Kroger.  Checked out the packaged dry soup mixes.  They have the Lipton dry chicken soup mix, Knorr French onion, cream of asparagus, cream of mushroom, some kind of Spanish tomato soup, and several others.  The packages suggest using them as bases for casseroles, stews and other main entrees.  A great idea to add flavor to bland preps.

FYI, they have a lot of Knorr's large jars of chicken and tomato bullion cubes now.  A lot.  As in an entire center display in the middle of one of the largest aisles full of nothing but piled up cases of large jars of Knorr's bullion cubes. The regular bullion cube area of the store seems much expanded too, with all brands and flavors.  What's that about?  Anybody know why apparently people need at least a dozen cases of chicken and tomato soup base bullion cubes in August in Las Vegas? ;) It's going to be 109 degrees today. Just wondering. Also, if anyone can think of some recipe to put them in, let me know!

Bullion in Las Vegas
Unless you can add vodka and pour it over ice ....  not a clue.  Seems odd, I agree.

[ Parent ]
Preps in a Box
There is a funny site by James Lileks, which discusses some of the weird recipes made in the 50's-70's, by food companies to promote their foods.  There was one, now that you mention it, that involved serving chicken broth with a celery stick in it as a "drink" at a late-night party for "the girls," who were presumably watching their weight.  Don't know if it had vodka in it or not, but probably couldn't hurt, especially if you were living on chicken broth.

A Cure for the Common Cold
There are recipies for cooking chicken with vodka, so drinking vodka with hot chicken broth might be what finally cures the common cold.  

ITW(Joel J)
Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear - not absence of fear.
- Mark Twain

[ Parent ]
Gallery of regretable food
He also published a book about the cookbooks (I remember the recipe you referred to!).  Love his site!

[ Parent ]
Gallery of Regrettable Food
I think we're both remembering them incorrectly; there were three drinks to the set. One was "Lemon Floats,"  chicken bullion heated and served in a cup with a lemon slice on top (sounds good actually), and "Sherry Cream," a diluted can of condensed cream of chicken soup, with 1/4 cup of sherry, served in a cup with a sprinkling of chives.  I think that's what tipped our memories.

You can see where chicken soup with vodka would fit right in there, presumably with some weird garnish.  Parsley maybe? Not weird enough. Jalepeno?  That would scare the flu right out of you.  By the the time you finished it, those H1N1's would be dead at the bottom of the glass. Maybe we could make up a "Gallery of Regrettable Preps," or, Alcoholic Flu "Cures."

The third, kind of confusing one was "Butter Cup,"  (my personal favorite), heated V8 with a pat of butter melting on top, stirred with a celery stalk in the glass. Both fattening and meant to remind you that you should be "reducing," all at once.  

[ Parent ]
My "regrettable food" is little cheese wedges in a round cardboard box.
Brie, maybe?  I don't know how long they last, but twice I've found them completely dried out.  I tossed them.  

Not regrettable food, but I just found some rice, formerly Jasmine scented but now just plain, after 3 years' storage in a forgotten corner.

"The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it."  Flannery O'Connor

[ Parent ]
Jasmine Rice
ROFL !  I know what you mean on this !  I splurged on getting the Jasmine Rice thru the Oriental Store ( cheaper btw )  and now after several years the scent seems to be dissapating when you cook it.  Contrary to most thinking; the scent is NOT an additive, it comes from the breed of rice itself and where it is grown.  Thailand grows the best Jasmine rice.
The rice is STILL much better then US rice; but I do miss the aroma...    I do have a "fresh" bag for special dinners however, since it sends such a nice smell thru-out the entire house !  ;-)


[ Parent ]
can rotation system
Now that I am feeling somewhat human again, I am going to attempt to make some more cardboard can rotation racks.


I have a few that I made with my husband, but this will be my first attempt to make one alone. Oh, well, if I mess it up I can tear it apart and start over!

This really helps me to keep my preps neat and stored in a small space.

I help keep track of what is left by placing a sticky dot on one of the cans, about 2/3 of the way in.  When I reach the can with the dot, I know it is time to add it back to the list.

kristikaylene, there's a good 72-hr. kit video, too.
Thanks for the link!  She uses a gallon milk jug, cuts it open (leaving a hinge) and fills it with 3 days' worth of foods.  My food choices might be different (is beef jerky thirst-inducing?) but the jug is a great idea, free and light-weight.  She puts in a little stove and fuel tabs, too.

"The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it."  Flannery O'Connor

[ Parent ]

For those who like Honeyville (note: I have no financial interest but have been a customer) here is their latest discount:

For a limited time we're offering 10% off of your ENTIRE ORDER.  From Thursday, August 6th, 2009 thru Tuesday, August 11th, 2009 you'll get 10% off of everything in your cart (except for our already low flat-rate shipping cost of $4.49).  Just order as usual and enter the coupon code HONEY58 during checkout.  The coupon code field is on the second page of the checkout process.  Enter the HONEY58 code, click the APPLY button to the right, and the savings will automatically be calculated for you.

To calm the wife buy cases of chocolate, to calm the husband buy cases of booze, and to calm the children...... heck the booze and chocolate should work.

Dehydrating for the first time
I finally got my dehydrator out of the box (bought 2+ years ago).  I have now dehydrated green beans, peas, carrots, tomatoes, and broccoli.  

They rehydrate well.  Rehydrating time was longer than I expected.  The tomatoes I like to eat dehydrated; very tasty lo-cal snack.

I'm going to do celery and fruits next.  I hope the celery is at least a little bit crunchy when rehydrated.  It goes into my tuna salad.

To calm the wife buy cases of chocolate, to calm the husband buy cases of booze, and to calm the children...... heck the booze and chocolate should work.

Bug Out Bags
Everyone who has a BOB might like this:

To calm the wife buy cases of chocolate, to calm the husband buy cases of booze, and to calm the children...... heck the booze and chocolate should work.

Food Dehydrator
Oremus, what kind of food dehydrator did you get, if you don't mind?  

I am looking for one myself.  I am going back and forth over the size.  I was looking at a nine-tray Excalibur, then didn't know if that was too large. Is five tray too small for 3 family members? Also, how loud is it?  If you have some other brand you like, let me know.  Thanks in advance.

It's a cheapo
Nesco American Harvest Snackmaster Express

I think I paid 25 or 30 dollars for it.  It has 4 trays and is very quiet.  I didn't want to get a high end model without doing some dehydrating first, to see if I would want to do more of it.

5 trays should work for 3 people unless you are planning on dehydrating a lot of stuff quickly, like a crop harvest.  I think I will eventually move to a bigger model. On my model you can buy additional trays.  15 bucks for two trays.  I would be better off buying another dehydrator, get the 4 trays and have a backup blower.

The lady I saw on a youtube vid was using an excalibur 9 tray model.  She made it look so easy, it was what got me to take mine out of the box.  I checked out the excalibur website and they had a collection of dehydrating vids collected on the web from people that use their product. Worth watching.

I looked at a 9 tray excalibur at auction on Ebay.  It sold for 149.

I'm presently dehydrating celery, green peppers, cantaloupe, pineapple, and peaches.

To calm the wife buy cases of chocolate, to calm the husband buy cases of booze, and to calm the children...... heck the booze and chocolate should work.

[ Parent ]
Thanks Oremus!  I had heard some people say Excalibur is very loud, at least in the larger version, and takes up a lot of room, which I don't have. If Nesco is that much cheaper, I might just start there.  Excalibur is a big investment, and I would have to re-arrange the whole kitchen because I really don't have a place for it.  Will check out Nesco this weekend.

American Harvester 15 Years and Still Going!
I have an American Harvester for 15 years and have put lots of tomatoes, peas, beans, apples and herbs through it.  It is still going strong and and working well.  I store it in the basement when not in use during the fall.  

I dry and use my vacuum packer then freeze the packages.  The vacuum packing, drying and then freezing makes everything last a very long time.

Last year I shredded my zucchini, put it in the dryer for a very long time until dry as I could get it.  Then I vacuum packed it and put it in the freezer.  It makes great zucchini bread after reconstituted.  

Can't remember what I paid for my American Harvester but it has paid for itself over the years.  Good luck with your Dryer.

[ Parent ]
My celery would not rehydrate.  Have you had any success with celery?

To calm the wife buy cases of chocolate, to calm the husband buy cases of booze, and to calm the children...... heck the booze and chocolate should work.

[ Parent ]
Sorry No Celery
I have never dried celery.  Did you try hot water to rehydrate?  Sometimes that helps.  

[ Parent ]
yes, but it didn't n/t

To calm the wife buy cases of chocolate, to calm the husband buy cases of booze, and to calm the children...... heck the booze and chocolate should work.

[ Parent ]
Checked Book
I checked my Deanna DeLong Book on Drying and she said that the cellery is good in soups and stews.  So that means long cooking to get it soft.  She also suggested to flake the cellery or powder it and add salt to make cellery salt.

Hope this helps you.

[ Parent ]
long term storage. 3,000-year-old butter found in Irish bog:

An oak barrel, full of butter, estimated to be roughly 3,000 years old has been found in Gilltown bog, between Timahoe and Staplestown (Kildare, Ireland).

What they found was an oak barrel, cut out of a trunk, full of butter. It was largely intact, except for a gash towards the bottom of it caused by the harrow. It was head down, and had a lid; something that has excited the archaeologists.

    The barrel is also split along the middle, which is common with utensils filled with butter found in the bogs. A conservator at the National Museum, Carol Smith, said that the butter expands over time, causing the split. The barrel is about three feet long and almost a foot wide, and weighs almost 35kgs, (77lbs). The butter has changed to white and is now adipocere, which is essentially animal fat, the same sort of substance that is found on well-preserved bodies of people or animals found in the bog.


To calm the wife buy cases of chocolate, to calm the husband buy cases of booze, and to calm the children...... heck the booze and chocolate should work.

I've read that farmers used bog-preserved butter as axle grease.
I guess they didn't used to turn it in to archeologists or museums.

"The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it."  Flannery O'Connor

[ Parent ]
Oremus, Stone Pages is such a cool site, thanks for linking it!

You can select a site photo and cruise around the whole place and get a panoramic view, and/or zoom.  :-D
Avebury in England

"The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it."  Flannery O'Connor

[ Parent ]
Small batch strawberry jam video

Very funny (but not exactly encouraging) account of canning.  :-D

"The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it."  Flannery O'Connor

I love Chile's blog
She's a great prepper! I know her through the dietary angle but she has great ideas and experiences on all aspects of sustainable living.

[ Parent ]
Make a solar cooker from Papa-san chair
This is a very thorough explanation of DIY project from mostly salvaged materials.   Author's cost was $15.40!  He estimated $50+ if you have to buy the chair and sheet metal (both used not new).  Lots of photos and about 8 pages of text.  
Sample paragraph:
Fabricate the aiming device by inserting the chopstick into the ratchet head on the end where the ratcheter usually goes. Plug this onto the nut in the center of your facets. This creates a sundial. Now you will be able to tell when the cooker is facing the sun because the chopstick will cast no shadow.
Note the shadow cast by the chopstick. This means the cooker is not aimed properly.
Now it is centered on the sun, and the stick casts no shadow.
(Note- If your chopstick catches on fire, it is probably well aimed.)

I think Eccles would enjoy the bolded note.  lol.


"The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it."  Flannery O'Connor

New prep item for Medical Kits

Wasn't exactly sure which blog to put this in so here it is...

A friend gave me several samples of the various formulas and the gauze is great for nosebleeds, etc. Apparently, this works on many different kinds of wounds even if you're on blood thinners. Am ordering granules and gauze for my medical kit. A handy thing to have whether you're SIPing or not.


"History never looks like history when you are living through it." ~John W. Gardner

Looks like a good idea -
But it sure is expensive.

Of course, cost is relative - if you really need it, it might seem cheap at any price.

[ Parent ]
Quikclot is a similar product
(at least it looks similar; there's a 4-page pdf describing it, but I didn't even try to understand it after shopping all afternoon. [yawn] )  Some versions are $10.

Quikclot Home  

Quikclot Travel


"The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it."  Flannery O'Connor

[ Parent ]

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