As I have said in a previous post, I am a bit of a coffee snob, so when I heard the tail end of an interview on the radio with Black Rifle Coffee Company, I perked up (no pun intended. Only in a SHTF situation would I ever consider perking my coffee!). The interview wasn’t just about the coffee, but the company as well. Black Rifle Coffee has two elements that make them unique. One is they are veteran owned and run and the second is how fresh your coffee arrives. You order your coffee on day one, they roast it on day two andRead More →

Most everyone has seen the old black cast iron cookware lying around. Maybe in your Grandmother’s kitchen, in a thrift store or at a yard sale. Or more recently, maybe you have seen it at Macy’s or William Sonoma. It’s not surprising. Lodge Cast Iron Cookware has been around for 121 years. With all the new fangle cookware out today, you’d think cast iron cookware would be passé. Not so. Not only is Lodge cookware still widely in use today, they are building a new foundry to keep up with the demand, but I’m getting a little ahead of my self. In 1896, Joseph LodgeRead More →

Throughout my many past vocational endeavors, I have been to many expos, conferences and seminars. These have been in the educational industry, coffee industry, ones for tea room owners, health care for the elderly, as well as the EMS industry. Every industry seems to have their own, providing a wealth of information on new trends and developments. So when I started to search for local emergency preparedness expo’s, I was surprised to find zilch. It seemed most of them were in the Midwest or southern states. When I found the NW Preparedness Expo in Prosser Washington, I was ecstatic. Since it was only 300 milesRead More →

2017 Has been a hard year for dogs in my family. Putting your pet down is a agonizing decision to make, when you know deep down inside, it is your pet’s time to meet their maker. For me, it started in October 2016 when we learned our beloved 14 year old Australian Shepard, Cocoa, was suffering from a brain tumor. Already deaf with most of her eye sight gone, we weren’t too surprised when other health issues started to appear. We see-sawed back and forth about the “right” time to put her down, then second guessed every decision. Do we wait till we see signsRead More →

When I first started out on my emergency preparedness journey, I divided up what “prepared” meant to me, into 6 categories. I had put a lot of time into some of my categories, and none into others. One that I had neglected was the area of Safety and Protection. Getting comfortable with a firearm would be my next goal. I started out on the internet to just get an idea of what was out there and came across The Well Armed Woman website. This has been a gold mine of information! The website was started by Carrie Lightfoot, a published author, national speaker, NRA certifiedRead More →

My kids have fond memories of the fruit leather I made for them when they were young. Pumpkin pie, peach, apple and apricot were the fruit leathers they enjoyed the most. Son Tender Heart has been challenging me since the beginning of summer to try watermelon fruit leather on my Ivation Food Dehydrator. I immediately dismissed the idea as unworkable due to watermelon’s high water content. I finally relented when I made my watermelon rind pickles (see previous post). I used the fruit from one whole watermelon and ran it through my food processor. Since I only have a small processor, I did many smallRead More →

I was always indifferent about watermelon pickles. Never tasted them. They sounded kind of weird. But this is summer and we (mostly I) consume watermelon by the ton, not by the pound. After listening to my sister-in-law talk about how yummy hers were, I asked to see the recipe. The recipe was old, penciled on a faded piece of thick yellow paper. The first thing that jumped out at me was the amount of sugar…..3 1/2 POUNDS! Did I read that right? They must have meant 3 1/2 CUPS. Nope. I got my magnifying glass out and sure enough, it was pounds. Okkaaaay. Next, IRead More →

After my successful Lasagna garden of 2 years ago, I took a year off. This year, I caught the garden bug again after visiting my niece in Wisconsin. She introduced me to companion gardening, inspired by the book Carrots Love Tomatoes. The basic premise is planting certain vegetables and herbs next to each other to repel insects and diseases. After examining my nieces’s carefully laid out plot plan on graph paper, I decided to do the same and spent my plane ride home laying out my garden. It was flawed from the beginning but I’ll get to that. I wanted raised beds so using theRead More →

The emergency preparation team at our church put our heads together, to figure out how to develop awareness among our own congregation. We came up with the idea of a huge display table. One that not only displayed stuff, but was a source of information as well. Possibly including a “call to action”. We wanted the table display up for at least 2 Sundays. Once we ran the idea by our pastor, then the church board, we made up our lists and the following is what we ended up displaying. Water       We brought out all sizes of storage containers; 5 gallons, 2 gallons, one gallonRead More →

CERT stands for Community Emergency Response Team. I vaguely remember when son Giver Man went through the CERT program 2 years ago. I heard about it again when I went to a seminar my church denomination put on. CERT training is a 20 hour course that was initially put together in 1985 by the Los Angeles Fire Department. It’s purpose was to train civilians to respond in emergencies when our established EMS system would be overloaded. Good thing too, as 2 years latter in 1987, the Whittier Narrows earthquake hit Southern California, confirming the need for civilians to be trained in emergency response. In 1993,Read More →