Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Haphazard Prepper's Food Storage Calculator

Probably every prepper who has been around longer than a minute knows about the LDS food storage calculator. It's where a lot of us got our foot in the pantry door. There's other prepping calculators out there, some that go so far as to estimate the number of razor blades and bottles of motor oil you need to store, but for a noob looking to get started without having a panic attack, the LDS calculator is a good place to begin.

Unless you have issues with gluten. Or don't eat processed sugar. Or don't eat soy. Or hate lima beans. Or store rice for your dogs. Like me. So, I took the LDS calculator and tweaked it to better reflect what *I* store, and added a calculator to figure up a year's worth of rabbit and chicken feed (assuming confined animals eating only bagged feed). I also added in so it'll add extra rice and canned veg for my dogs based on the total weight of all the dogs on the feed bill. My EZ Dog Food mix is 1:1:1 rice:meat:green beans.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

IBC Tote Chicken Waterer

My hens like nothing better than to fill their water buckets with dirt, straw, and anything else they can kick up off the ground. I wasted a lot of water dumping that thing out every few days, so a couple of years ago I decided it was time for a change. I built a water system that used a 5 gallon bucket feeding to a section of PVC with some water nipples on the bottom edge. It worked ok but the hens always seemed like they were dying of thirst trying to get water a drop at a time. I finally went back to the water bucket and the nuisance of constantly cleaning it out.

This time I'm trying something a little different. Using a 275 gallon IBC tote as a water tank, I'm running PVC pipe along the bottom edge that feed into water cups I picked up from Beaktime. Because this tank originally had Roundup in it (chill, I cleaned the hell out of it) I'm going to add a homemade inline filter that uses activated charcoal. Activated charcoal pulls glyphosphate out of water. Finally putting all those water treatment classes to use.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

When Clyde Strikes

So much discussion about prepping revolves around worst case scenarios. EMP. Terrorists. Martial law. Pandemic. Aliens with reusable anal probes. It's understandable, after all there's nothing exciting about getting together with buddies and beer and talking about the possibility of dumbass Clyde down at the city getting crazy with the backhoe and digging up a water main he was tasked with merely uncovering.

The reality is that we're far more likely to encounter the Clydes of the world than we are a Book of Eli landscape, a fact I've been annoyingly reminded of over the last 18 hours as Clyde and his pals try to figure out how to patch up the 10" main they destroyed last night while "fixing" a minor leak. Last time I drove past they were all standing around a Buick sized hole (1976 Buick in case you're wondering) and scratching various body parts and getting nothing done as usual. Oh I don't know for sure that's what happened, but it wouldn't surprise me a bit.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Water Barrel Tower

I've wanted to do this project for a long time, but there is no way I'm shelling out $100 for a 55 gallon water barrel so it had to wait until I found a better option. And at last, I did. I located a steady supply of 55 gallon barrels that were used for food flavoring, for $25. It's a bit of a drive to pick them up, but even factoring in diesel they're still a fraction of what I was finding anywhere else. Plus we got to eat at BJ's Brewhouse. Because, beer, yay!

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Recovering from Prepper Burnout

Anyone who has been prepping for more than a few years understands prepper burnout. Well, maybe not the noobs but trust me, the day will come.  Sometimes more than once, as you can probably tell by my occasional vanishing acts.

Whether it's the arrival of spring, the fact that my husband finally cleaned out the garage enough that I can access my 72 hour totes, or the 4 day Doomsday Prepper Netflix binge I shamefully indulged in during a recent injury, the hoarding urge has returned. Like a tsunami, I might add. And as many of you probably know, when that happens it can be completely overwhelming. I need to do this, buy those, restock that, build one of these, projects piling up on you until at last you sink to the floor, back against the wall with a bottle of vodka clutched in your shaking fingers.

Maybe that's just me.