Category: open thread

Thur. Nov. 23, 2023 – 112323- Happy Thanksgiving Day

Cool and damp. Chance of rain? Same as most days. Part clouds and light rain in the local forecast. We had all kinds of weather yesterday, with the exception of heavy rain.


Another year has gone by and we’re still here. Slightly worse off. Slightly more broke. Slightly fewer freedoms. But. We have much to be thankful for. Family. Friends. Time to get ourselves ready for what is coming. Robert believed that would be a slow slide into economic collapse. I believe it too, although the shape of the slope and how long it can take are up for grabs.

I’m thankful the slide is slow. That we have time to try to improve our outcomes. That we can mostly just live our lives.

I’m thankful that you all keep coming around and sharing in my life, and sharing your lives with us. It’s a pretty unique place on the web, and I like it a lot. Thank you to Rick for the help and support. Thank you to the others with the ban hammer for your help. And thank you to Barbara who lets me continue to keep the doors open and lights on.

Take some time today to count your blessings, because even the most wretched among us is still blessed compared to about 99.999% of those who have ever lived on this earth.

Take your joy where you find it. And keep stacking.

nick flandrey

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Fri. Aug. 25, 2023 – Oh, I’m busy today, buzzy bee busy…

Hopefully a bit cooler and dryer today, after yesterday’s rain, but I’m not holding my breath. Or my breadth. I’ll be doing stuff width my fellow enthusiasts… and part of that will involve unloading trucks, so I really hope for cooler and dryer.

As I mentioned, it rained on my yesterday. All day there were threatening clouds, but I didn’t believe it ’til it was smacking me in the face. I did get one pickup done of stuff I’m hoping to just flip this weekend. I also gathered in some of my hobby stuff. It was on my last stop that the rain came.

Now I’m actually behind where I should be with loading my stuff and the stuff I promised to bring.

I’ll have to scramble this morning from the minute the kids are out the door. And I won’t be checking in during the day, probably, so let’s hope today isn’t the day the hammer drops.

This weekend I’m in meatspace. We’ll see what the crowd feels like and what they’re thinking. It’s important to listen to a bit wider and more diverse group than usual. Gives a reality check. And I like to share my hobby with other enthusiasts.

Not much prepping or stacking, but maybe some simplifying and some earning.

One can always hope.

And stack. In case the hope don’t float.

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Sat. July 1, 2023 – fireworks tonight!

Well, it’s hot and humid again. 84F at midnight, slightly cooler in the morning, getting warmer all day. Peaking in the sun well over 100F. Summer, in other words. It was scorching hot in the late afternoon sun, despite a gently breeze and being next to the lake.

I spent the day getting the truck packed, and getting back up here. A stop for diesel fuel, a stop at Home Depot for wire, (and they were out of what I wanted) and some unusual traffic had me getting back up here late. And because my mind is fried, I jumped into electrical work when my time and limited daylight would have been better spend building the stairs to go under the back door, which gives access to the yard and the lake…

The electrical fought me all the way, so I’m headed to the store today, at some point. I hate it when a plan doesn’t come together.

I think I’ll sleep in an hour, I went to bed early too, and maybe that will get my brain back to at least 7 of 8 cylinders. I can’t keep up the pace forever, and I have hit a wall. Hopefully I can reset that with a bit of extra rest. C’na do anythin’ ’bout the ‘eat tho.

Our neighbors do a massive fireworks show for the 4th, and they are slated to go tonight. BIG show. Good times. I’ll have the kids decorating the dock with bunting and flags. Might fly an extra flag or 12 too. This weekend, I’m stacking up community.

Stack some yourself.

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Thur. Apr. 27, 2023 – cuz there ain’t no cure for the summer time blues…

Warmer, and wet.   Forecast has us in the rain zone for the next two days at least.   BOL got major thunderstorms yesterday and we got rain around 11pm…   It would be helpful if it wasn’t raining… but if wishes were horses, we’d all be eating steak.

Didn’t get much done yesterday.   Fell asleep.  Threw off my whole day.   Did get the kitchen cleaned up after all the frying.   Need to change the air filters in the AC to get rid of the fry smell.  Not fish, just oil.  Did some auction stuff.   Messed about.   Did some stuff for D2’s birthday celebration.

Today I need to get out of the house and do one pickup.  Then it’s off to Costco to get supplies for D2’s special dinner.   And there will be preparation and cooking later.  Then eating.   One of my siblings will be joining us too, and that will involve some coordination.

So today will be family focused…

Stacking up family time.   Just as important as buckets of rice.


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Fri. Apr. 21, 2023 – ‘nother week gone, still not Mad Max

Wet and cold.   Probably still raining.   Rain started late last night, and continued.  Thur. was overcast and humid most of the day.   Better than raining though.

Did some things.  Mostly domestic bliss.   Then made leftovers for dinner.   Wife and kids are cleaning out closets.   They are eliminating some redundancy but also weeding out the outgrown.   I’ll be stealthily putting some redundancy back in the next month or two.

The plan was to head to the BOL for the weekend, but the kids have a school function that will run late.   Dunno what will happen.  Might leave tonight, maybe tomorrow.   Have to take the Expedition, so no haul of stuff this weekend.  Change and flexibility, right?


Short shrift today as I fell asleep in the chair and woke just long enough to write this.

Stack something!


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Sun. Apr. 16, 2023 – [insert pithy comment] [or something funny]

Cool but nice.   Clear.   Mid 70s to low 80s.  Nice.  But then again, I’m not in Houston.   It was certainly nice up here yesterday.  74F and clear, a bit humid, but not drippy like Houston was when I left.

Once I finally made it up here, I spent a couple hours cutting grass.   Then I got ready for my relaxing evening.

Fisherman neighbor dropped by while I was having my fire and we talked for a couple hours.   Local.   Meatspace.

Got to bed late, so late start today.   Late start on plumbing.  I’ve got to figure out if the tub valves I bought will work, and if not, what I’m going to do about it.   I did get a replacement for the whole assembly, but don’t want to go that far if I can avoid it.

I’ve got some hose bibs to connect and some walls to close too.  No leaks from the last visit’s work… so I can finish closing that.

Other ‘targets of opportunity’ are on the list.

Just gotta keep moving.

And stacking.


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Sun. Apr. 9, 2023 – Happy Feast of the Resurrection

Cool and damp today, but hopefully clearing.  It’s always nice to have good weather for Easter.

I spent yesterday morning with my fellow enthusiasts for my non-prepping hobby, and spent the afternoon sleeping and getting ready for today.

The kids still like to get Easter baskets, and color eggs.   We spent a while last night making little gnome egg characters, and some more traditional egg decorations.

Today, after the back yard egg hunt, we’ll gorge on chocolate and Peeps ™, with dinner hours away.  Plan for dinner is a big lamb roast, and some tasty sides.   I always lean toward ‘savory’ with lamb.  Might use the robot to make a fresh loaf of bread.   If it doesn’t work out, I will pop a shelf stable loaf into the oven.

After dinner there might be some napping.

Whatever else you do, enjoy the fellowship and promise of the day.


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Fri. Mar. 31, 2023 – where to draw the line?

Another day that starts out cool, but gets warmer, and might have rain.   Like yesterday.   But with maybe more rain.   Because despite forecasts, there was very little rain for me yesterday.  I drove all over town too.

Made most of my pickups.   A late start caused by my bank kept me from doing everything I planned, but I can make it up today.    I spent over an hour trying to get a cashier’s check at the local B of A branch.   IDK if it was incompetence, or if the young lady is afflicted with an unfortunate malady that sabotages her interactions with computers, but after failing to get me a check for 45 minutes, they finally took me to a teller window where I spent another 15-20 minutes doing the dance of the doomed waiting for the stars to align and printers to print…

As part of the service she asked me what my short and long term goals were.   And she really did make the extra effort to be certain I gave her an answer.   So I told her I just wanted to make it through the coming financial collapse with some assets left.   She asked how I intended to do that.  Gold, piles of gold, and rental properties.   She was a bit taken aback, so I pointed out Ferfal’s aphorism that you can sell a gold chain an inch at a time, and that as long as the tenants can pay, if inflation wipes out the value of money, you can keep raising the rent.   It was a bit more than she could easily absorb.

Unrelated but interesting, I found out that an acquaintance had a windfall and without any warning or even an inkling of what was going to happen, inherited “life changing amounts of money.”  “F YOU!” amounts.   “Never work again” amounts.   It would suck really hard for them if an economic collapse took that away from them.   If anyone should have something like that happen, it was this person.

What would you need to be in that category?  What would you do after you got it?  What would you do to keep it?

I would probably keep doing what I’m doing.   I’d have people to do stuff for me, and I’d like to have a ‘mad scientist’s lab’ but IDK if I’d change much.   I would certainly stack some things….

How ’bout you?



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Sun. Jan. 22, 2023 – 01222023 – meaningless fun with numbers!

Cold and damp again.   Never really got any warmer yesterday, and stayed overcast.   Got a bit cooler when night fell, and was 50F when I went to bed.  Clear would be nice even if it was chilly today.

Spent the day with the wife and kids watching tv.   Had fun.

Didn’t do anything else.   Had fun.

I’ll probably pay for it later, but had fun.

We’ll see what happens today, but I’m betting on NOT a full day and night of TV viewing, at least not for me.  Too much stuff to do.  Still, had fun.

Sometimes that what needs stacking.


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Sun. Jan. 1, 2023 – Happy New Year!

Cool and damp to start the new year.  It stayed pretty nice yesterday, and was 59F near midnight.  Not super cold, and certainly not ‘warm’.


So.   Happy New Year!  I am sincerely grateful to everyone who comes by,whether you just read or comment and participate in the discussion; whether you come by every day or just once in a while.  Thank you to Barbara for her continued support, and to Rick for his.   It’s been an interesting and challenging year, personally, generally, and here at the Daynotes Journal.

I’m not much for navel gazing, but I do think it’s important to reflect on what you’ve done and what’s been done to you.   It’s important to learn lessons from that, change what needs to be changed, do more of what needs doing, and to keep making progress toward your goals.   I think it’s important to have goals, and this time of year is a traditional time to set goals, evaluate progress toward them, and to focus on changes.

This past year, I finally started making progress toward one of my major prepping goals- getting somewhere to GO when it’s time to go.  Call it a BOL, a retreat, a ‘country place’, or a lakehouse… it’s somewhere to go when the time comes.  It’s also a lot of work  and a new dimension to my prepping journey.  It has eaten a lot of my ‘excess’ energy and time, which has resulted in much shorter daily posts that previously.   There should be some good blog fodder coming up though.  I’ve got big ideas and goals.

To wit, I want to look hard at water treatment, starting with storing more at the BOL, and getting set up to treat more.  I want some off grid back up energy generation.  Start with a fueled generator, add solar and possibly wind, and include battery storage.  I want to get some wood burning heating set up.  I’ve got two wood burning stoves, I’d like to get at least one of them installed.  THEN I’ll need lots more stored wood… I want to get my radio shack and antennas set up for backup comms.  I want to make more progress learning about harvesting food from the environment, to include fish and other creatures from the lake, deer and pig hunting and processing, and getting a productive garden set up.  I want to get a workshop set up and a full set of tools up there so I can be productive and make or repair what needs to be made or fixed.

On a more day to day level, I need to continue making progress on the repair and remodel of the BOL and all  the grounds and outbuildings.   I also need to get some of the neglected projects here at home finished.  I need to focus on selling stuff and having my business make money this year to pay for all the other stuff that needs doing. I also need to be involved in my kids’ lives and education.   That might mean a lot of volunteering at school, which takes more time.   My other volunteering for the Constables and HPD needs to be increased too.  I made those contacts and started building relationships, but let it go for too long.   Time to re-engage in that community.   Time to start meeting with my fellow hams again too.

Oh, and a little physical fitness, maybe some martial arts or other self defense classes, particularly with the kids, and more shooting are all “wants” for the new year.   Yep.   Lots to do.  Much of it is just expansion of what I am doing or resumption of what I was doing, but some of it is new, and all of it will be taking place in the context of work and time spent at the BOL.

Nothing like setting some goals 🙂

My outlook for the coming year is the same as it was.   Dumpster fires to continue and worsen.   I expect more economic woes, more political shenanigans as the existing order falls apart.   I am more convinced than ever that we’re already sliding down the slope into what Bob called the long slow economic collapse.   I’m also convinced we’re currently entering one of those times in world history where everything changes.   The world will look very different in a few years.  I can’t even begin to pick a likely scenario, but I’m going to do my best to get through it, and come out the other side.  If bare survival is all I can manage, I’ll take that as a win, but I’m shooting for positioning myself and my family to thrive in whatever comes next.

Part of that positioning is having somewhere to go if we have to leave here.   Part is increasing the stacks NOW while the stuff is available.   IDK what the next ‘toilet paper’ or ‘N95 mask’ will be, but something that is common and cheap now will certainly be in short supply or even unobtainable later this year, and in the coming years.  Part is getting out and networking, meeting and making myself useful to other people.  Who you know is always important, but when things go really pear shaped, who you know and who knows you can make the difference between working or not, getting help or not, being safe or not… Part of it is building skills.   A vague plan to ‘live off the land’ won’t help if you don’t know how to do it, and haven’t the stuff needed to make it possible.  Fishing is turning out to be harder than gardening, and I’ve positively sucked at gardening…

Prepping is a journey.   It’s also fractal in nature, so there is always more to do, learn, or stack.  I’d love it if you all keep hanging around, sharing my journey and taking one of your own.

Here’s to a safe, healthy, and prosperous New Year for us all!



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