preparedness

When the Power is Out

Let me introduce my sister site over at blogspot.com. I started this site years ago but abandoned it for Handy Granny at wordpress. I rediscovered it the other day and decided to revive the site for a more of prepper, survival type format, even changing the name to When the Power is Out. The most recent article has to do with sleep patterns and changes during a prolonged power outage. Other posts are about heating a greenhouses and other topics. It is a work in progress. If you like this new format let me know in the comments section.

https://peninsulapeasant.blogspot.com/

homesteading · preparedness · self-reliance · Thinking ahead

Getting your fat on during SHTF

You may remember from your high school history class the story of Lewis and Clark and their expedition into the north west. We are introduced to a young Indian girl, Sacajawea, who leads the unlikely troop of misfits into Indian territories.

Fourteen year old Sacajawea endeared herself to the men of this historic adventure, often being called “little sister”. She patched their jackets and tanned hides to make many pairs of moccasins, she cooked delicious meals and treated their wounds with herbs and earth. However, even this young Indian girl was not aware that although there was plenty of antelope and mountain sheep available to hunt and feed themselves, the expedition was slowly dying.

During one particular meet and greet at an Indian village the expedition picked up an old Indian grandfather. Grandfather Indian was curious about the mission and the men welcomed him to travel along. Several days of traveling with his new found friends, Grandfather Indian noticed many of the men becoming ill and unable to continue the nightly chores.

Grandfather Indian recognized this groups problem as a depleted nutritional condition and quickly gathered up all the troops tallow candles and melted them in a large cooking pot. Next he scooped out a cupful of the melted tallow and had the men drink it down quickly. One by one, each person drank down a their share. Not one of them gaged or choked on the greasy beverage due to the fact the body knew what it needed to survive. By morning everyone was up and ready to hit the trail.

The moral of the story is that fat is required for many bodily functions. Your body cannot make certain fatty acids and needs to get it from outside sources. If dietary fats are not supplemented the body cannot process vitamins A,D,E, and K, creating a host of health problems. Also, fat is so very important for proper brain functions and are crucial for maintaining good eye health.

Besides fat add a lot of flavor to food, fat if a ready source of energy contributing 4,000 calories per pound of fat. Fats other jobs are that it provides a blanket around vital organs thus shielding them from trauma and cold.

During SHTF

You can stockpile beans, rice, pasta and oatmeal for the really hard times, but the more important fat products are seldom thought of. And of course, fats and oils have a short shelf life because they go rancid easily at room temperature. However;

Store purchased lard and beef tallow can be frozen for up to 6 months.

Coconut oil can be frozen up to 6 months–Although, I have had some in the freezer for more than a year and it is still good if kept in a tightly sealed plastic jar.

Butter can be frozen up to a year. Some industrious folks have learned how to can butter, but that craft has escaped me.

Cold water fish are quite fatty, providing the body with many needed nutrients. Cod liver oil will keep in the refrigerator for several months and is an excellent source of vitamin D.

Learn more about collecting and using fat for your survival prep

https://www.youtube.com/watch? Rendering fat

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qeZHrcI2BNU Schmaltz chicken fat

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q75AkXgVpFo Goose fat for bush craft maintenance.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m-fN2XjC6Qc How to collect fatwood

preparedness

Water is Life and Death–

Post Apocalypse Hard Truths, Page 2

 

Three simple molecules, two hydrogen and one oxygen, bind together to form each molecule of water. According to Elson Haas M.D. Staying Healthy with Nutrition, “Pure water does not exist naturally on our planet; water is the universal solvent, and most other substances present on Earth dissolve in it to different degrees. The earth’s natural water varies in mineral content, as does water found within our bodies. Without clean water we cannot experience optimal health.”

Bacteria, viruses and protozoa are different kind of substances, however, unlike mineral which can be dissolved.  https://water.usgs.gov/edu/bacteria.html

Could this be an explanation of why bacteria and protozoa love standing, dirty water? It allows them access to growth and reproduction?

“Although the U.S. has one of the safest drinking water systems in the world, there are an estimated 4.32 million cases of acute gastrointestinal illness (AGI) per year from public drinking water systems 1,2. This estimate does not include waterborne illness from non-public drinking water systems (for example, private wells), recreational water, or water for other uses (for example, irrigation, medical uses, or building water systems.) The frequency of disease from all water exposures is likely higher, but the overall prevalence of waterborne illness in the U.S. is unknown. It is important to understand the full scope of waterborne illness in the U.S. so that researchers and public health agencies can assess the public health risk of illness due to contaminated water, advocate for resources, and develop preventive measures.”   (https://www.cdc.gov/healthywater/burden/)

 Thirst and Dehydration

  1. At just 2% dehydration, thirst is perceived.
  2. At 5% dehydration, a person becomes hot and tired.–strength and endurance becomes decreased.
  3. At 10% dehydration, delirium and blurred vision becomes a problem.
  4. At 20% dehydration, the person dies.

In one day of heavy work the body can lose between 2 to 3 gallons of water through urine, sweat and breathing. If water in the body is not replaced within a matter minutes dehydration begins.

The average adult human can only absorb about 4oz. every 30 minutes. It has been said that people should drink at least 2.75 gallons of water per day, that’s 250 gallons a year.

Water is not changed in the body, it goes in as water and comes out as water. It picks up waste and debris on it’s way out. If you have no water; DO NOT EAT.

But if icky water is all that you have, know what you may be getting into. . .

Cholera and Dysentery

These little nasties are microbes that get into the food and water supplies via fecal contamination. https://www.infoplease.com/science/health-and-body/water-borne-diseases-cholera-and-dysentery-epidemic-dysentery

Cholera and Dysentery are usually thought to be 3rd world diseases as after such disasters like the Haiti earthquake. The real truth is unsanitary conditions can become prevalent after almost any community disaster where standing water and septic overflow occurs. (See section 3, Water and the human body, and section 11, Before the toilet gets nasty, in How to Survive and Thrive When the Power is Out)

Cholera usually begins abruptly when contaminated food and water have been ingested, bringing on watery diarrhea.

Dysentery is characterized by inflammation of the rectum and large intestine with frequent loose bloody stools and mucus. Dysentery is scary due to constant watery diarrhea which causes severe dehydration and eventually death if not treated properly. The elderly and children are most susceptible to the debilitating effects of the constant water lose.

Giardia

Giardia is not a bacteria or a virus but a protozoa, a tiny animal. It has a crusty hard outer skin that lets it survive outside the body for a short while and because of it’s hard shell it won’t be killed off by putting chlorine drops in your water bottle. Transmission of these parasites comes from contaminated fecal matter in the water.  https://www.cdc.gov/parasites/giardia/

Incubation can take up to 2 weeks, but some people never develop symptoms at all. Giardia is recognized by diarrhea, gas, bloating, stomach pain and vomiting, greasy stools and dehydration. This bacteria is less severe in adults but can effect children with many permanent consequences.

Polio

Polio virus is seen in contaminated water, untreated sewage and unsanitary living conditions. According to the CDC; Most people who get infected with poliovirus (about 72 out of 100) will not have any visible symptoms.

Polio only infects humans and is very contagious spreading from person to person through personal contact. As with many diseases it is the vulnerable who are most at risk, those with a less or debilitated immune system. Keeping your environment as clean as possible after a crisis is the most important aspect of remaining healthy.

This is only the beginning

This article only covers four of the most often seen diseases after a crisis. With all respect to my audience, might I suggest that you take some time and research further. Other diseases and conditions are as follows;

Botulism- Clostridium botulism bacteria can grow in food and water. Can be deadly.

Typhoid- Salmonella typhi bacteria found in both food and water.

Cryptosporidiosis- Crytosporidium parvum protozoa contaminates many water systems and is resistant to household chlorine.

Hepatitis A- Hepatitis A virus lurks in food and water usually put their by another contaminated person.

New and emerging contaminates from industrial and farm pollutants and runoff. Also, scientists are discovered fish, frogs and other amphibious creatures are morphing into something never before seen on this planet due mostly to birth control pills and antidepressants polluting our once pristine rivers and lakes.

There is a lot to think about within this article, which is in no particular order. But please, please take your situation with the utmost seriousness. Where will you find long term, clean water after the SHTF?

 What are your thoughts and comments, please feel free comment below.

 

homesteading · preparedness · self-reliance

Post Apocalypse Hard Truths

You have beans, Band Aids and bullets stored for when the SHTF. You have put some things back for those who didn’t prepare or maybe for anonymous donations to your church congregation. You have a little silver and a box of neat stuff designated for barter. You even remembered to buy extra seed for next years garden and you even thought to put books and games into storage for quiet times. Congratulations, you are a step ahead of 85% of the rest of the country.

***

Today was a dreary, grey, Sunday morning for April. The temperature was 26 degrees and as I poured my first bitter brew of the day, I witnessed large white snow flakes flying past the window carried on a 20 mile an hour icy wind. I snatched up my warm cup of coffee and headed over to the woodstove, picked up the fire poker and stabbed the fire making sparks float up the chimney. It needed another chunk of tree to keep it burning and warming the house. I put on two medium sized logs. The house was quiet, so I curled up in the easy chair closet to the woodstove with my coffee and allowed my mind to bring me memories of my first year out here in the backwoods. 25 years living out here, how far I have come and I’m amazed at all that I have learned!

If God had chosen a place on earth to live, I serious believe he would have loved it here. His handy work is ever present with thick pine and hardwood forests and abundant animal population of all descriptions, rushing rivers and gushing waterfalls in all the right places. The first time you stand on the edge of a bluff and witness a summer sunset over lake Superior with an intoxicating warm pine scented breeze caressing your check, you will have been permanently embedded on your primal physic consciousness blessings of our ancient ancestors. I fell in love with this very hypnotic reality and have been addicted even sense.

On the flip side there is ‘Mother Nature’ who is less agreeable. She expects you to know your environment and will spank you hard if you don’t take your situation seriously. People have walked off the edge of a cliff by misjudging the beauty of this place and their own ability. A few years ago two sisters left their southern state homes and took a drive to the U.P. to see the sights in April. They drove out into the woods with nothing more than the coats on their backs and a bag of junk food. Confident in their driving skills, the pair drove to the northern most part of the forest on a wilderness back road ending up close to lake Superior in about 3 inches of snow. They stopped to take in the sights and promptly became stuck. Alone and no cell phone service they ended up out there for twenty-one days. The first night stranded in Michigan’s wilderness, it snowed hard and the car was pretty much buried. Long story shortened, they lived and managed to make it out but they were almost done for when they were finally discovered. They had no idea what to expect driving to a different climate, even in what they thought was spring. By the grace of God, their wind shield had reflected a momentary spot of sunshine and a rescue helicopter spotted something shiny. Most people aren’t so lucky. Authorities found a frozen man near a major river just yesterday. He too had wandered off to see the sights.

My first winter alone in my little tar paper cabin out here in the big woods, the jet stream took a right turn to the south. (I was a young 43 years old and fairly fit at the time. Tough as nails I thought.) Artic air dove down from Canada, blew across lake Superior and landed over Michigan’s U.P. at minus 50 degrees. Hell, that is mid winter Alaska temperatures! I went to bed at about 10:00 last night, put a few logs in the woodstove as usual but I didn’t wake up during the night to feed the wood burning beast. That fateful morning I woke up to 26 degrees in my one room cabin. It was so cold, the dogs’ water was frozen, I surmised that the woodstove must have gone out soon after I had gone to bed.

I put on a jacket and boots and went out to the outhouse. On my way back I stopped at the side porch to grab an arm load of wood. WHAT??!!! There was only 4 pieces of wood left. I had run out of heating wood, with no back up heating as I had no electricity and no indoor plumbing. Back inside the house I put on some warmer clothes, grabbed the hand saw and headed for the woods to find some wood to get me through the rest of the day and night.

I began trudging through three feet of snow feeling around in the snow for anything burnable. By now my heart is racing from the stress of the deep snow and cold. I couldn’t find enough wood to do much good, I was about to go into a full blown panic. I gave up and headed back to the house. I wanted to cry but I knew better at minus 50 degrees air temperature.

I struggled to get back to the house with a meager arm load of twigs, hardly enough to get me through the day. I fired up the camp stove to heat some water for another cup of warm coffee and to help clear the cold so I could contemplate my next move. How long could I stay out here in the wilderness without heat? Will they find my cold, dead body in the spring?

Mother nature spanked me good that day! I managed to get through that crisis thanks to a dear neighbor (we call people neighbors out here even when they are miles away instead of blocks away) who was able to get his snow machine up and running. He came to check on me and helped me to secure a load of split wood to get me by until I could find someone to sell me their extras. You can’t thank good neighbors enough.

This is one of the many near misses I experienced while living out here in the backwoods alone without modern stuff back in the early days. I am still here because I learned my lessons and have developed a great respect for what dearest mother nature has to dish out.

In all reality, for those who feel that bugging out to the woods when the SHTF, I’d like to warn you; life in the woods, without electricity and skills will not be easy and could kill you. Many won’t have the stomach for it, I don’t care how much you protest that you could do it. It is not the time to learn as you go. Most TV shows like those reality survival programs are scripted or pretested. Case-in-point–The history channel put on a series where they took a group of young healthy men and put them alone in the wilderness in the Pacific Northwest. Did you see it? They contacted me to audition, but given my age they declined may application. I figured, this little old lady would show up those little boys so they didn’t want to ruin their ratings. You know drama and pain sells. There were several episodes where I couldn’t believe these guys had to tap out. One kid decided to go home and give up the $50,000 prize money because he lost his fire starter and another young guy became sick and went home after drinking stream water, without filtering or boiling it first. But I digress. . .

There has been an influx of people to this area lately, people looking to get out of the city and maybe just a more peaceful existence. Whatever their reason, they are bringing with them huge outdoor mercury lights and paved roads and driveways. In other words, they are bringing modern stuff with them and not learning how to survive as our ancestors did. When the SHTF they will be just as dead as everyone else because they didn’t learn their lessons.

Moral of this story? You have prepared with food, water and other stuff and feel you can survive what a failed society will hand you. But I’m here to tell you, you are not! You need the wherewithal and skills to make it through to the other side. And just because you got stuff, it still may not be enough and will eventually run out, remember this; whatever you got, someone else wants and will take it! You need to fill your head with know-how, and teach your children. Hell, learn together and start them young, you will have past them survival skills as their legacy from you. Much more important than anything you could ever, ever give them. Start now!
Melting Time

Your very first step is to secure a hard copy library. How to books you can pass down to the next generations because who knows if their future will have electricity for their stuff.

Go out into the woods and do it! Or take a survival class. There are classes everywhere for urban and wilderness survival. I took a class set up by 4-H leaders. It was very intense to say the least. One of the things they did to us was blindfold each student, spin you around and lead you out into the forest. One at a time they took us out into the wilderness and left us their to stay the night and find our own way back the next morning. Hey, I love it. I would have liked to stay another night or two but, you know, duty calls.

Practice, practice, practice and then teach others. You learn as you teach. Repetition pays off.

What are your thoughts? Comment below.

preparedness

Are You Ready?

       Or How to Take a Bath When the Power is Out

                )))) First of it’s Kind ((((

https://handygranny.com/look-inside-the-book/

Iron Mountain Michigan– This book has seen phenomenal sales since it’s release in 2015. A handy guide/ personal journal that you will want to keep coming back to when the unexpected occurs. This one would make a terrific gift for your sister or neighbor who just can’t seem to boil water or start a camp fire.

Between it’s pages J.L.Noakes has delightfully captured the know-how from real people who lived before the widespread use of electricity. From their stories of basic daily living without electricity we learn how to keep food cold, meat preservation and recipes, about ladies and babies needs during a power outage, and many herbal remedies, to a heart wrenching interview with a Polish woman in her 90’s about her life in Nazi occupied Poland during WWII. “This woman’s story broke my heart and kept me from sleeping several nights while writing it”, Noakes explains. All these and more are held in this unique, one of a kind book of know-how, preserved now for future generations. How to Survive and Thrive. . .

How to Survive and Thrive When the Power is Out offers the best secrets from our ancient sisters to early 1900’s domestic divas. Our great grandmothers kept her family comfortable and healthy without electricity. How did she do it? Every woman with a child will want this one close at hand.

It is a time that has come. Many families today are preparing for an unknown future and others are simply looking for a little more self reliance and peace of mind. This is one of those books that you will toss into your go bag and refer back to many, many times. Also, within each section you will find perfect pages to catalog your own stories and triumphs.

Power outages seem to be a way of life for many of us now, with unpredictable weather, and sabre rattling by out of control groups and governments, one never knows what might be just over the horizon. Be prepared with How to Survive and Thrive When the Power is Out. You can find it on Amazon, also from this site.

Get this one today!

https://handygranny.com/look-inside-the-book/