Saturday, 31 December 2016

09:19 – Happy New Year’s Eve

2016 in Prepping

We closed on our new house in Sparta in December 2015. In the year since, we’ve gotten moved in and gotten things more or less the way we want them. Among the many things we checked off our to-do lists were many prepping-related purchases and activities. Here are some of those:

o We got moved into the house, got our house in Winston cleared out, and sold it. We’ve gone from living in a metro area with a population over 1,000,000 to living in a rural mountain county with a population about 1% of that.

o We installed a wood stove and laid in a supply of firewood sufficient to keep the house livable for at least a couple of months. We intend to double or triple our firewood supply in the near future.

o We’ve expanded our LTS food supply significantly. We’re now at the point that we could feed ourselves, Colin, Frances and Al for more than one year without any outside resupply.

o Rather than eating mostly fresh and frozen foods, we’ve started cooking and baking from scratch for a lot of our meals, using mostly LTS foods. We also greatly expanded our selection of cast-iron cookware.

o Although we haven’t yet started canning, we do have everything we need to can, including a pressure canner, several dozen new canning jars, re-usable Tattler lids, and so on. Early in the New Year, I’d like to get started canning meats, initially probably ground beef and dark-meat chicken.

o We greatly expanded our inventory of medical supplies, notably the most important SHTF antibiotics (doxycycline, SMZ/TMP, metronidazole, levofloxacin, and amoxiclav) from maybe a dozen courses total to more than 150 courses. All of those sit in the freezer, where they’ll remain usable for literally decades.

o We purchased the essentials for a small off-grid solar power setup: four 100W solar panels and a charge controller. I ordered a 2.5KW/5KW modified sine-wave inverter yesterday, which will suffice to drive the well pump. I still need to buy some deep-cycle batteries, although if TSHTF later today I could get a functioning solar power system going using car batteries.

o We installed a 330-gallon propane tank and a gas cooktop. That will suffice to allow us to cook and bake completely off-grid for literally years. There’s enough propane that we could also use it to heat water for bathing and laundry.

o We made a lot of new friends and acquaintances locally, including our immediate neighbors. Most of that is down to Barbara, who volunteers with the Friends of the Library and the local historical society, but I’m doing my bit as well. We’re both doing what we can to become part of the community.

So, what did you do to prep this year?