Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Hot, Hot , Hot

After that cool front last week, this week feels unbearable. We reached 100 degrees yesterday and 104 today. For us up here this is roasting. The valley was 107 yesterday but they are hotter than us 99% of the time. We haven't seen these kind of temperatures in over four years.

We haven't been able to work on the roof since last Thursday. Just been way to busy other ways. Dave put 10 hours on the roof that day. To say he has been hurting this week is an understatement. (He won't like me telling anyone this.)

I have printed out a couple of articles from rethinksurvival.com. One is the

How to Make a Bucket Survival Kit, 34+ Items to Add to Your “Bucket List”

I added  few different things on mine but you can add or subtract the things you need to. This is a good start. I did the same with the water bottle kit.


It also has how to make a water bottle survival kit.

Even if one makes these, I still like my packback to have redundancy and be able to have more. If one can use a vehicle these buckets with extra gear and foods and other necessities would be great.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

New great grand nephew

Our niece Steph has a new little boy. A hearty welcome to the world young man.
Our granddaughter K has had the flu this week, never fun for anyone. She is feeling better this afternoon.

Here is a good recipe from a great site.
Posted: 21 Jul 2014 08:00 AM PDT
Have you ever had those Datrex or Mainstay Emergency food ration bars? If so, you may have realized that they aren’t the best of survival rations for taste but they will keep you alive. Nuff said. And hard tack? Yikes! You may as well be eating a brick. ;)
Well, I came across this article a while back on making survival bars and I thought I would give it a shot myself to see what they tasted like. Please read the original article if you like, though, I will post the ingredients and steps below, as well as my own experience making them.
Also note that according to the original article the entire batch makes approximate 2000 calories, NOT just a single bar. Depending on how you cut it, a single bar will be a few hundred calories at most. This is about the same as the Datrex or Mainstay rations.
As for taste, they’re not bad at all. In fact, I was surprised that they tasted so good.


  • 2 cups oats (I used regular oats)
  • 2 1/2 cups powdered milk (I used nonfat from LDS storage)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 tbsp honey
  • 1 3-oz. package lemon jello (the recipe says you can use orange instead)
  • 3 tbsp water


  1. Mix oats, powdered milk, sugar in a mixing bowl.
  2. Mix water, jello, honey in a saucepan. Bring to a rolling boil.
  3. Add jello mixture to oats mixture and blend well.
  4. After being thoroughly mixed, press into a lined (with parchment paper) 9″x13″ pan.
  5. Cut dough into bars and ensure they’re completely cut through.
  6. Bake bars at 200 degrees Fahrenheit for 1.5 to 2 hours. Remove from pan and allow to cool. Alternatively, you can dehydrate them at 145 degrees for 4-6 hours.
  7. After dry and cooled, separate bars and package in a foodsaver bag or mylar bag.
I choose to bake half the batch in the oven for two full hours and I would say that was just about right. The other half I choose to dehydrate for about six hours. Either way, when I was done the bars broke in half with a crispiness that tells me they were done.
I should also note that there was a noticeable difference in the color of the baked versus dehydrated bars, in that the dehydrated bars were significantly lighter in color than the oven bars. The taste seemed the same.


  • If dough is dry add water 1 tsp at a time until the dough is still crumbly but able to stick together when pressed. I ended up using about two tablespoons and that worked well for me.
  • Do NOT purchase Jello instant pudding mix. That’s what I bought the first time I tried this and it didn’t work out well. My wife laughed at for a minute or two. ;) When finished laughing, she told me I needed the actual lemon Jello packet that says “Gelatin” on it. In my defense, the box said Jello right on the front.
  • Remember, the drier the better because moisture will cause them to go bad and possibly even to develop Botulism depending on how you package them for the long term. My advice: take your time drying!!

Caloric Breakdown

I decided to do my own math and found that the entire batch made up over 3000 calories. If cut into 12 roughly equal bars that’s 260 calories per bar. Unless I did my math wrong here’s what I found:
  • Oats = 560 calories (at 140 calories per 1/2 cup)
  • Milk = 1333 calories (at 100 calories per 3 Tbsp; there are 40 Tbsp in 2.5 cups)
  • Sugar = 720 calories (at 15 calories per 1 tsp; there are 48 teaspoons in 1 cup)
  • Honey = 180 calories (at 60 calories per 1 Tbsp)
  • Jello packet = 320 calories (at 80 calories per serving, 4 servings per package)
Well, that’s about it. I packaged mine in foodsaver rolls, marked the date, and stashed them in my workshop for a while to see how they do over the long term. Compared to what you can purchase commercially made and certainly when compared to hard tack, these are winners!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Very busy weekend

The kitchen/bathroom and back porch roof is all finished with a little help from grand girl lol.
She just loves to help.

Grandson Braden was here visiting at a sons house from AZ. Hubby got to see him but I didn't :(.  Hope he had a good time with some of his cousins.

We got the meat birds all butchered and in the freezer on Saturday. We started at 5 am. Well hubby went out and got the fire going under the tub of water at 5 and I crawled out of bed at 5:30. We had gotten 98% of everything ready the night before.

All that needed to be done was to bring the knives out and cover the work table to have a clean working surface. Just 25 birds this year. Just, lol, was enough for the 2 of us to do.
We got them all butchered cleaned up and into very cold water, except one.

 I packaged up six and hubby took off to help good friends that live up here load up for their move.
We will sure miss you but hope all the best for you J and D. We know you will enjoy being by your children and grands.

Hubby came home and we finished up the birds.
The break did me good and K even got to help de-feather the last bird. She told me it was gross lol, but she wanted to help anyway.
She helped carry the packaged birds to the freezer trying to take 2 at a time but 2 were to heavy for her.

Hubby then started to take shingles off the steep roof and found the old wooden shakes underneath. They are falling apart.
 The next thing to do for the evening was to dig holes for the posts which he had already tarred the bottom of. We set the last one and got cement around it just as dark was setting in.
We will have a nice roof over the deck come fall. The deck still needs work but that will get done also.

Hubby's back told him he had worked hard come that night and Sunday and this morning. But he knows there are times he has no time to do what needs done here. So he does as much as he can.

Our sweet Lab Lizzie died Saturday also, we will miss her greatly. Lizzie and her best friend Paper. Both gone but not forgotten.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Working Vacation

Dear hubby toke a weeks worth of vacation. He is up on the roof building a new roof section onto the kitchen, bathroom and back porch part of the house. The original area was a back porch and sometime say the 50's it was turned into a kitchen and indoor bathroom and a 4x6 back porch added on out the back door. They didn't bother to put a new roof on so all that was above our heads was drywall board, porch roof plywood and then shingles. Always got the coldest in the winter and hottest in the summer. This should help immensely.

Of course this is the hottest weather we have had all spring and summer. Supposed to be 90 or more today and we never even got to the 90's the last three summers.

The rest of the roof will be re-shingled sometime later this month. There were three layers of shingles on the kitchen/bath area to take off.

Last Saturday one of our older boys was here,lol boys he is 35 :) ans his son A was here and helped reattach the deck to the house and get it jacked back up where it belonged first.
They also helped haul the gazebo frame down into the yard and hubby and I got it covered Monday night.
Large or small gardens.

I hope lots of you are trying to at least grow something in pots and buckets if you have no room for very much else. I know people who are growing things like cucumbers in pots and children's swimming pools for squash, potatoes and other things. Lettuce and spinach can be grown in almost anything.