Sunday, March 25, 2012

Things People Say

This is a hilarious satirical video about the things people say to homesteaders and/or people who like to be prepared. Apparently she'd had more than she could take of her family laughing at her and did a little relief therapy for herself.  It's really so much about the difference between city people and country farming people.

The gal that did this titled it "Things Sheeple Say." To those that don't know, preppers call the mass of people who are oblivious to the need to be prepared for the unexpected "sheeple," as in people who wander around oblivious as sheep. To me, that's a unnecessary demeaning word. I was glad to watch a follow-up vid she did expressing that same sentiment. In that vid she said she wished she hadn't used that term and wouldn't again.

Okay, so here's a little of my philosophy about prepping. To me, it's only wise and prudent to be fairly well prepared for whatever disaster that might befall us. Am I a die-hard prepper preparing for the end of American Society? Nope. However, if we have another ice storm that knocks out the electricity for two weeks as we had a few short years ago, I can:  warm and light a room; cook and have decent meals; drink, bathe and flush the toilet.

Why am I not a die-hard prepper? First, I can see the possibility of our society crashing; however, it's a real crap shoot to predict such a thing. I'm not as convinced as die-hard preppers are that it's imminent. Second, I'm nearly 60, without a large family clan or neighbors I've lived with all my life, so actually, I think I'd be killed by looters.

Of the numerous other scenarios that could happen, I don't know if I'd really want to live through that. Nuclear bomb? I don't think so. Asteriod strike - maybe if it's on the other side of the planet. EMP - whoof, maybe. Again, I'd likely die rather quickly - looters, stroke, heart attack.

Why am I soft prepper? Mother Nature can give us a rash of bad events, and I'd like to be able to ride them out without having to scramble just to survive until recovery happens. In our area we have bad storms, ice storms, tornados, and being by the New Madrid fault, we've even had some bad earthquakes.

To me it's wise to have enough preparations on hand to be able to live without electricity, have first aid supplies enough to take care of minor injuries, and have enough water and food to not starve in a couple of weeks.

Now if a tornado blows my house away, none of that will help. If the New Madrid fault goes, I might or might not be in good shape.  If a sand blow comes up under my house, I'm pretty well screwed, or if the house falls down, likewise. If my house survives, but the bridges are out, I can make it - even though I'm in an area that can't be reached from any direction, north, south, east, or west, without crossing a bridge. The groceries will be empty of food within 3 days, but I have enough to hopefully survive until lifelines can be established. If we have an ice storm that takes out the electricity, I'm set. Likewise with a bad storm.

So anyway, that's my little op ed for the day.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Eagle - The Cam is on Again

The eagle cam is on again for this season.  If you want to visit their website click HERE.

Yo! Uncle Charles and Aunt Agnes!!!!

Live broadcast by Ustream

Broccoli and Pasta - Tom Colicchio of Top Chef

This is a video of a one-pot dish of broccoli and pasta by Tom Colicchio of Top Chef.

Egg Dish - Tom Colicchio on Top Chef

This is a video of a breakfast dish that is a favorite of Tom Colicchio of Top Chef. It's an oven-baked egg dish with bacon, mushrooms, leeks and eggs. Since leeks are sparse where I live, I'd likely use green onions or sweet onions.

Spicy Cole Slaw - Gail Simmons on Top Chef

This is a video of making a spicy cole slaw that I wanted to remember. It's by Gail Simmons on Top Chef. It uses peanut butter as the base. She adds enough Sriracha to blow the top of my head off, so I think I'll be skipping that. Max loves it. It's so hot it ruins anything for me to eat. Crystal sauce or Cholula is about as hot as I can go. I know; I'm a wimp. I also think I'd slice everything more finely than done here; certainly on the carrots. I'm simply not a fan of a lot of carrot in any salad.

Fish Recipe - Tom Allen on Top Chef

This is a video of a method of oven-cooking fish in parchment which I want to remember. This method cooks the fish in parchment and calls for a fish fillet, grape tomatoes, kalamata olives (or whichever olive you like), some lemon zest, and a sprig of fresh thyme if you have it.

Pork Roast - Tom Allen on Top Chef

Here is a video I'm embedding to remind me of a method of roasting a pork shoulder. Yum.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Dark Shadows - Intro for the DS Virgin

OMG. I just saw the first trailer for the May 11, 2012, release of Tim Burton's remake of "Dark Shadows." It had me doing the proverbial ROTFLMAO. Gads, I remember dashing off the school bus into the house to watch this TV show from 1969 through 1971. I remember cursing the every-other-year bus schedule that got me home a half hour too late to see it. No video recorders back then, alas.

I couldn't find a clip of the trailer, but I did find this one introducing the original cast members and their contemporary actors. So for the young and Dark Shadows virgins, here's a clip that will let you in on the skinny.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Whassup With Us

Okay. So it's been ages since I've actually made a blog post. I started the day off with posting a lot of links to things I wanted to keep at hand. Those aren't what's up with us, just things I want access to without a hunt through the bazillion and one bookmarks I have.

In my last post in February, I noted that Lola was beginning to fall. She was. She fell twice; fortunately, no bones were broken that I know of . She had a sore spot on a hip, but no bruising there. Since no bones were sticking through skin, no bruising showed,  and she could walk, I went with there's not much else to do. She doesn't move a lot anyway, so further hurt was minimal. After a couple of weeks, she said it wasn't painful anymore, and I think we're safe.

She has proven quite amenable to using the walker, and goes nowhere anymore without it. Before she was using a cane. Of all of my relatives which have driven family nuts by not utilizing aids, my mother has been absolutely wonderful about accepting aids when the time comes to use them. Thank you, Mama.

A few weeks ago when Max was here, we carried her rocker out of the living room and replaced it with the lift chair I'd gotten for Dad. He steadfastly refused to utilize it properly, and for him it was a total waste of nearly $700 dollars. For mother, it's been wonderful. We needed to remove the rocker she had been using and replace it with something that was steady and wouldn't throw her while using it to stand up.

She uses it to help her get up and to sit down. For the first few days she sat in it rather stiffly. Then something clicked, and she realized how nice it was. She uses it to raise her feet up to help with both comfort and swelling. She relaxes back into it when she knows she's nodding off, and I don't worry about her falling out of her chair during a nap. She curls up and gets comfortable while watching TV. So the $700 waste for one person has turned into a boon for another person. Sigh. What a result.

On the other hand, part of what I think has kept me from blogging for so long has been the decline in Lola. She has become almost incapable of getting herself up in the morning. What a change from the time when I finally took control of the TV remote because she was blasting me awake after 5 hours of sleep. She might get herself up one day out of five nowadays.

The rest of the days I have to roust her out of bed. Always she is spacey and looney. If I don't get her up by 1:00 p.m., she has been incontinent. I have to force her to get up, have to direct her to the bathroom, have to instruct her to take off her pajamas, clean herself, and put on the new pajamas. I have to strip the bed and wash the sheets, pee pads,  and pajamas. The good in this is that she is still mostly capable of doing these things herself. If there's been a problem with a BM, I have to clean that up, and frankly, have to make sure urine is cleaned from all areas the diaper/incontinence pads touch. However, she can manage a lot without me doing every single thing. She finally manages to get to the chair in the living room during the time it takes me to strip the bed and get the wash started. Then I have to comb her hair and get her presentable for the day. If I didn't, she wouldn't care.

After all the madness with Joe, his personality and his dementia, I think the saddest and most hard thing for me to cope with has been my mother's demise of capacity. She has declined to the point that it's perfectly acceptable for her to pee in her bed and to lay there for hours in that pee unless I intervene. She hasn't fallen into dementia. She's just fallen into nothingness.  Frankly, the last month of dealing with and accepting that has almost done me in.

I could rant and rave about Joe, but I still knew it was dementia accentuated by personality. Accepting that was part of the course. Accepting that my mother has stopped caring about laying in piss has almost done me in.

Who knows what's going to get us until we have to deal with it. This latest has almost stopped me in my tracks.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Onion Soup Mix

This is a video by BexarPrepper from on how she makes onion soup mix.

Beef Wellington by Gordon Ramsay

This recipe for Beef Wellington makes me drool. So I'm putting it in my blog to keep for easy access. It's a 2-part video.

While Max was in this weekend (3/11/12) we explored a new-to-us meat market, Hughes, outside of Paducah and got the beef and bacon for the recipe. We went to Kroger for groceries for the mushrooms, etc., and about a mile from home I realized I forgot the puff pastry. Grrrrrr.

Oh, well! I froze the beef, and during the next week I'll track down puff pastry, hopefully in Bardwell, and pick up another package of mushrooms and do it next weekend for Saturday supper.

Laundry Soap

This is a video on how to make laundry soap. There are various links on the internet one can find. This one is from BexarPrepper on, and is very concise. I also like the fact that this recipe only uses 1/2 cup of Borax as Max is fairly sensitive to Borax. I'm hoping that the ratio of Borax to other ingredients will dilute it enough he won't break out in a rash from it.

Right now I'm having trouble getting to a place that sells washing soda and either Fels Naptha or the Zotie soap used. I know there's a store in Martin, TN, that sells it, and if I can get down there, I'll give it a try. You end up getting 10 gallons of laundry detergent from a half bar of soap, 1/2 cup of Borax and 1 cup of washing soda. Can't beat that price.

Egg Storage - For Jill

My cousin was wondering about saving eggs without refrigeration the other day. She lives in a very rural area, and if there was an ice storm or damaging wind storm, there's every possibility that she might be without power for some time.

Imstillworkin, on has been conducting an experiment comparing different ways of storing eggs. She's trying refrigeration, non-refrigeration, coating with mineral oil and vacuum sealing. She posted a two-month update the other day, and I've embedded it here for Jill.

If I had more half-gallon jars, vacuum sealing might be a good option.  Personally, I'd opt for coating in mineral oil. I've also seen posts about people coating with butter, but I'm leery of the small amount of butter going rancid. Years ago many people used sodium silicate for storing eggs; this was called waterglass. They'd mix a solution in a big crock and immerse the eggs in there. If one googles "water glassing eggs," enough results show up to satisfy curiosity.

Since mineral oil is easily obtainable, and water glass is something: 1. I don't really know where to buy and 2. don't seem to have many uses for, mineral oil would be my medium of choice. We've enough junk around the house without adding something else that is one-use specific.


Imstillworkin recently posted this recipe on her youtube channel, and it piqued my interest enough to want to save it. I've been craving a meat pie or pastie-type thing lately, but am so horrible with making crusts that craving is all I've done. This recipe looked delicious and easy enough there seems hope that even I can make it.

From her vid, she says it's a dish called Runza and is eaten in Nebraska. It's a meat filling wrapped in a yeast dough and baked in the oven.