Intolerance

Hello Everybody, Frank here.

This is the weekly installment of a previous article. It deals with a terrorist act that occurred in France a few years back, not the current events going on with the Yellow Vests.

Why the title Intolerance? Some of us believe it’s time to quit turning the other cheek and quit accepting that boot in the face. So, intolerance will be a new theme around ‘Frank & Fern’. If you agree or disagree, please let us know, because I am tired of turning the other cheek.

So, we’ll see where this goes. It’s time to take a stand. Hope you enjoy the article.

We’ll talk more later, Frank Feral

Originally published November 14, 2015

One More Wake Up Call

In the wake of the latest acts of terrorism, our prayers are with the people of France, and people the world over. One of the frequent comments we’ve read since last night is, where is this going to happen next? When will it happen here? Unfortunately, we live in a day and time where the expectation of a terror attack, an economic collapse, or a government take over of the country is common around the globe. No wonder there are so many people that continue to deny the possibility of these things happening, they are unbelievable. How can our world have come to this place and time? How could we have let this happen?

Giving in or appeasing has never been equated with safety or respect of power. Once civilization reached the point of meeting the demands of people because if they didn’t it was racist or a hate crime, all was lost. If someone shows up at your door demanding entrance and accommodations, can you deny them? Maybe on an individual level, but apparently it is no longer allowed on a national level. Why is that? Who decided to change the rules? Bleeding heart liberals, that’s who. People that never worked a day in their lives. People that think it’s okay to take something you have just because they want it. That is a generalization and may include some folks that don’t actually deserve to belong in that group, but if they don’t, they know who they are, and can exclude themselves.

We watched a video by Ann Barnhardt not long ago and the the statement that stuck with me the most is that she is no longer a nice person. Nice is weak, nice gives in to the demand of others whether they are valid demands or not. Nice gets people killed. Frank and I are no longer nice people either. Sometimes we offend people with the things we say and write. That’s okay. Sometimes things need to be said that others don’t want to hear.

Recently Frank had a conversation with an intelligent, professional woman. She has a gun, but won’t shoot it because she is afraid of it. Her husband now travels a lot and she is home alone with their three young daughters, all beautiful girls, and so is this woman. When Frank asked her what she would do if men broke in and had their way with her oldest 10 year old daughter, what would she do, she almost looked sick at her stomach. What would you do? Watch? Scream? What good would that do? There are things in this world that are not nice and getting less nice by the minute. Unfortunately, there is nothing we can do about it but watch it unfold, and unfold it will whether we like it or not.

If you are someone that is preparing for an uncertain future, because you have no doubt it is coming, I’m sure the events in Paris have caused your heart to skip a beat or two. It has also caused you to review your preparations, and begin another list of things you would like to have, or need to have, before that time arrives. I can only hope that Christmas trees will find many, many useful instead of frivolous, items underneath them this year. Things like buckets of wheat and a grinder, extra socks that the kids will grow into, garden seeds and tools, anything that is needed for a serious survival lifestyle.

 
As Frank and I read the news about Paris last night, we began to discuss what we needed to get, before we can’t any more. That is something we have given much thought today. We are making serious plans to accomplish or acquire some needed things. Soon. Very soon.

One thing we need to keep in mind is the curfew or martial law that occurred in France as these coordinated attacks unfolded. It’s something to seriously think about. What would martial law do to your life? Your routine? Access to family or friends? There are areas of the country that are having difficulty dealing with law enforcement because of heavy handed, militaristic tactics. There are other areas that work hand in hand with their law enforcement officers, because they are all on the same page, protecting and serving their communities. Do you know which kind of community you live in?

There will come a day, that appears to be getting closer by the second, that we will no longer leave our home. Will it make any difference? I don’t know. Will there be folks that come to the gate begging or demanding? I don’t know for sure, but we expect them. Will we be able to defend what is ours and survive the coming catastrophe? I don’t know that either. What I do know is that we are no longer nice people. If someone comes demanding, it won’t end well, one way or the other. If someone comes to harm and take, that won’t end well either. Will we come out on the ‘winning’ side of any of these encounters? There will come a day when winning means living another day and losing means death.

What I do know is that resentment is building. There are people that resent the fact that some people worked hard all their lives for what they have. There are people that demand to have what everyone else has that haven’t worked a day in their lives. There are people that resent folks that can’t work through no fault of their own. There is a growing group of people that resent working hard all of their lives to pay for those that refuse to work. There is a national movement to divide the races that is causing groups of people to be a target just because of how they look or talk. This too is building resentment among different peoples. What good can possibly come of this? Will people band together and refuse to take part in the coming wars against those that aren’t the same or don’t have as much? We can only pray so. But it won’t be the case in many locations, that has already been proven over and over and over. What about where you live? Know what surrounds you.

So, will all of our preparations make a difference in the coming collapse of society, or not? There is no way to know that until it happens. We only know that if we are to die, by whatever means, that we want to do it ‘with our boots on’ working side by side to survive, doing everything we possibly can. Neither one of us want to have to look the other in the eye and say, “Well, things will be okay. The government will take care of us.” Or the neighbors, or the notorious ‘they’ will take care of us. There is no way on earth that we want to be dependent upon someone else to provide when we are perfectly capable of doing it ourselves. Dependence is weakness and when the SHTF, weakness is death.

The atrocities in France are one more wake up call for all of us. We don’t believe anyone can actually be ready for what is coming. We can only try to be ready, and try with all our might. If there are those among us that choose not to try, then they have sealed their fate. If a person will not lift a finger, or spend a dollar to provide for themselves, their children and their families, then I pity them and we’ll pray for them, but there is no way we will jeopardize our lives and safety for them. We will not be nice appeasers giving in to the demands of those that would not be satisfied with a crust of bread for a starving child, but insist their needs and wants be met just because we did prepare and have food on our table with a warm roof over our heads.

Folks, there are some very, very difficult decisions coming to all of us. If you have not given deep, serious thought to what you will do in the coming days, you need to. Mental preparation is one of the most important parts of being prepared. Discuss what you will do when someone comes demanding to be fed, housed, clothed and entertained. Come to a decision that everyone can abide by, and do it now before the scenario unfolds. Remember, united we stand, divided we fall.

I can only wish I never had to write these words. Wishing doesn’t change the condition of the world or the need to be prepared for what is coming. Evil walks the land and it has many faces. It laughs in the face of death, terror and horror. Plan, then execute your plans with unwavering determination.

Until next time – Fern

 

One More Wake Up Call

In the wake of the latest acts of terrorism, our prayers are with the people of France, and people the world over. One of the frequent comments we’ve read since last night is, where is this going to happen next? When will it happen here? Unfortunately, we live in a day and time where the expectation of a terror attack, an economic collapse, or a government take over of the country is common around the globe. No wonder there are so many people that continue to deny the possibility of these things happening, they are unbelievable. How can our world have come to this place and time? How could we have let this happen?

Giving in or appeasing has never been equated with safety or respect of power. Once civilization reached the point of meeting the demands of people because if they didn’t it was racist or a hate crime, all was lost. If someone shows up at your door demanding entrance and accommodations, can you deny them? Maybe on an individual level, but apparently it is no longer allowed on a national level. Why is that? Who decided to change the rules? Bleeding heart liberals, that’s who. People that never worked a day in their lives. People that think it’s okay to take something you have just because they want it. That is a generalization and may include some folks that don’t actually deserve to belong in that group, but if they don’t, they know who they are, and can exclude themselves.

We watched a video by Ann Barnhardt not long ago and the the statement that stuck with me the most is that she is no longer a nice person. Nice is weak, nice gives in to the demand of others whether they are valid demands or not. Nice gets people killed. Frank and I are no longer nice people either. Sometimes we offend people with the things we say and write. That’s okay. Sometimes things need to be said that others don’t want to hear.

Recently Frank had a conversation with an intelligent, professional woman. She has a gun, but won’t shoot it because she is afraid of it. Her husband now travels a lot and she is home alone with their three young daughters, all beautiful girls, and so is this woman. When Frank asked her what she would do if men broke in and had their way with her oldest 10 year old daughter, what would she do, she almost looked sick at her stomach. What would you do? Watch? Scream? What good would that do? There are things in this world that are not nice and getting less nice by the minute. Unfortunately, there is nothing we can do about it but watch it unfold, and unfold it will whether we like it or not.

If you are someone that is preparing for an uncertain future, because you have no doubt it is coming, I’m sure the events in Paris have caused your heart to skip a beat or two. It has also caused you to review your preparations, and begin another list of things you would like to have, or need to have, before that time arrives. I can only hope that Christmas trees will find many, many useful instead of frivolous, items underneath them this year. Things like buckets of wheat and a grinder, extra socks that the kids will grow into, garden seeds and tools, anything that is needed for a serious survival lifestyle.

 
As Frank and I read the news about Paris last night, we began to discuss what we needed to get, before we can’t any more. That is something we have given much thought today. We are making serious plans to accomplish or acquire some needed things. Soon. Very soon.

One thing we need to keep in mind is the curfew or martial law that occurred in France as these coordinated attacks unfolded. It’s something to seriously think about. What would martial law do to your life? Your routine? Access to family or friends? There are areas of the country that are having difficulty dealing with law enforcement because of heavy handed, militaristic tactics. There are other areas that work hand in hand with their law enforcement officers, because they are all on the same page, protecting and serving their communities. Do you know which kind of community you live in?

There will come a day, that appears to be getting closer by the second, that we will no longer leave our home. Will it make any difference? I don’t know. Will there be folks that come to the gate begging or demanding? I don’t know for sure, but we expect them. Will we be able to defend what is ours and survive the coming catastrophe? I don’t know that either. What I do know is that we are no longer nice people. If someone comes demanding, it won’t end well, one way or the other. If someone comes to harm and take, that won’t end well either. Will we come out on the ‘winning’ side of any of these encounters? There will come a day when winning means living another day and losing means death.

What I do know is that resentment is building. There are people that resent the fact that some people worked hard all their lives for what they have. There are people that demand to have what everyone else has that haven’t worked a day in their lives. There are people that resent folks that can’t work through no fault of their own. There is a growing group of people that resent working hard all of their lives to pay for those that refuse to work. There is a national movement to divide the races that is causing groups of people to be a target just because of how they look or talk. This too is building resentment among different peoples. What good can possibly come of this? Will people band together and refuse to take part in the coming wars against those that aren’t the same or don’t have as much? We can only pray so. But it won’t be the case in many locations, that has already been proven over and over and over. What about where you live? Know what surrounds you.

So, will all of our preparations make a difference in the coming collapse of society, or not? There is no way to know that until it happens. We only know that if we are to die, by whatever means, that we want to do it ‘with our boots on’ working side by side to survive, doing everything we possibly can. Neither one of us want to have to look the other in the eye and say, “Well, things will be okay. The government will take care of us.” Or the neighbors, or the notorious ‘they’ will take care of us. There is no way on earth that we want to be dependent upon someone else to provide when we are perfectly capable of doing it ourselves. Dependence is weakness and when the SHTF, weakness is death.

The atrocities in France are one more wake up call for all of us. We don’t believe anyone can actually be ready for what is coming. We can only try to be ready, and try with all our might. If there are those among us that choose not to try, then they have sealed their fate. If a person will not lift a finger, or spend a dollar to provide for themselves, their children and their families, then I pity them and we’ll pray for them, but there is no way we will jeopardize our lives and safety for them. We will not be nice appeasers giving in to the demands of those that would not be satisfied with a crust of bread for a starving child, but insist their needs and wants be met just because we did prepare and have food on our table with a warm roof over our heads.

Folks, there are some very, very difficult decisions coming to all of us. If you have not given deep, serious thought to what you will do in the coming days, you need to. Mental preparation is one of the most important parts of being prepared. Discuss what you will do when someone comes demanding to be fed, housed, clothed and entertained. Come to a decision that everyone can abide by, and do it now before the scenario unfolds. Remember, united we stand, divided we fall.

I can only wish I never had to write these words. Wishing doesn’t change the condition of the world or the need to be prepared for what is coming. Evil walks the land and it has many faces. It laughs in the face of death, terror and horror. Plan, then execute your plans with unwavering determination.

Until next time – Fern

Good Trade

Remember this?

Now fast forward to sometime in the not too distant future. Yes, fast forward. Remember when you could do that with a VHS tape? Most young people have never had the pleasure. Anyway, the not too distant future. What will buying and selling be like? How will we get the things we need? Like the things in all of our preparations we overlooked or outright forgot to get? What about all of the physical labor that will be necessary to live a collapse, survival life style day in and day out? Can you do that? 

Good trade. Bartering. I think this will become, and already is becoming, the new way of commerce. Commerce won’t end with an economic or societal collapse. Person A will always need something that Person B can provide. When there is no longer a monetary basis upon which to make that transaction, bartering or trading will be the manner in which commerce will survive.

There was a young man in Frank’s Survival Radio class that has begun developing his homestead. Not only is he interested in survival radio communications, he is starting a flock of chickens for his young family. Since we use pseudonyms here, we will call him Emmet, which is a German name meaning strong worker. The reason his name is associated with work is because that is what he did here in exchange for a flock of young chickens. We struck a deal of chickens for labor, and while he was here found out that Emmet works two jobs so his young wife can homeschool their children, making it an even better deal.

We have more than enough young hens to replace our current laying flock. From the two batches of eggs we incubated, we have already butchered the older set of roosters, still leaving about 40 or so young birds. From that 40 we kept about 8 hens. That still left many birds to choose from. When Emmet arrived, we first picked out 10 hens and 2 roosters for his new flock. Then the work really began.

It has been too long since our chicken house has been cleaned out. We planned to clean it out long before now, but my sinus issues have kept me out of the chicken house except during feeding time, and on a few occasions Frank was left to do everything on his own. When Frank came up with the idea of trading chickens for a clean chicken house, I thought it was a great idea. He contacted Emmet and the deal was struck.

 

It made pretty quick work for the three of us to get the house cleaned up. Frank brought down the tractor to haul the trashcans full of manure to the garden. We have several empty areas in the garden that received this wonderful fertilizer. The parts that suffered the most when the heavy, spring rains really washed away the topsoil now have a good start at renewing the nutrients for next year.

 

As we left the chicken house I looked at Emmet and said, “Good trade. Have you ever seen that movie? Dances With Wolves?” He had and agreed it was a very good trade. You see there comes a time when you have to ask for help to accomplish some tasks that you used to do with ease. Frank and I are no longer young whipper snappers like Emmet and it was a blessing to have his help. For us this was a very good trade, and it also helped Emmet start a larger flock of chickens for his growing family.

Once the chicken house clean up was complete, it was time for water, coffee and more radio conversation. Frank is a natural teacher and enjoys sharing information about setting up a shack, wiring antennas, or general knowledge about increasing the effectiveness of existing radio communications equipment or techniques. While they talked radio, I got the sourdough rolls ready to bake. I had mixed up the dough earlier in the morning so it would have time to ferment and predigest those carbs for us. After I went to the barn and finished up the chores of milking, feeding and watering the animals, it was time to bake and sample the bread.

There are so many different things we can barter or share, whether it is a tangible, albeit live commodity, or knowledge. The last article we wrote about books is another example of learning information and skills that can be ‘traded’ or bartered. As the time draws nearer to a total change in the way business is conducted around the globe, but more importantly in your neighborhood close to home, having tangible goods, skills or knowledge that can be traded for something you need or want, will not be a convenience, but a necessity. So how are your bartering skills coming along? 

Sharpen up your skills and senses. Keep a keen eye on what is in your midst and fast approaching over the horizon. Time keeps ticking along, sometimes almost imperceptibly, bringing us closer and closer to the inevitable. Don’t get caught in a stream of regret where you would ‘trade’ it all for one more day to prepare.

Until next time – Fern

Women & Survival

I had a very interesting and inspiring conversation with a good friend of mine this afternoon that has lead to the topic of this post. I want to thank her for the conversation, ideas and willingness to listen to me ramble, as well as the opportunity to disagree on some topics. After we finished talking I really thought about the things we discussed and how it relates to our survival as women. Here is what I’ve come up with.

The most important thing a woman can acquire that will increase her chance of survivability in a disaster, economic collapse, societal collapse, martial law, or any other situation that would involve a question of survival, is a good man. A man that will not only protect and care for her, but a man that will teach her how to protect herself and her family. This may not be a very popular recommendation in some circles, but there is no substitute for having a man by your side when the chips are down.

Now, with that said, you also don’t want to be a burden and always expect someone else to protect you or take the lids off of jars for you. Let’s say there has been a collapse and it’s every ‘man’ for himself. No more stores,

police protection, food, water, electricity, etc. What will you do if something happens to your husband and you are left to deal with everything on your own? Can you protect you and yours? Do you know how? Have you rehearsed many, many different scenarios over and over in your mind so that when you have to depend on yourself for your own protection that you will be able to pull the trigger and not cower in the corner and cry? You need to. And even if your husband is still alive and well, what if a group of people are trying to take what you have or kill you? Then what? Are you going to wait until they kill your husband before you try to help out with the defense of all you hold dear? 

I know that sounds really harsh, but when the SHTF and the world is no longer recognizable, your neighbors have left because they have no food, the scum down the road has started systematically performing home invasions at will, you need to be ready to do what is necessary. You need, as a woman, to be ready to protect yourself. I know that I do not want to be raped, tortured and killed by anyone, let alone a group of men enjoying

the anarchy and chaos of a collapse and a lack of law and order. My previous training as a reserve police officer helps me a great deal when I think of protecting myself. I am grateful I had the opportunity to be trained in firearms. Not only that, the training gave me a different mindset when it comes to taking any kind of trouble from what we called ‘maggots’. Enough on protection. Just know that you need to be ready to protect yourself and anyone else in your family that may need it. Your husband is your best and first line of defense, but if you’re out working in the garden and he is not around when a group of people come down the driveway planning on taking your food, or causing you harm, you need to be ready to handle it.

And speaking of food. Women are known for nurturing the family, with food and sustenance, right? We are the keepers of the home, the one that provides adequate nutrition made with loving hands. I mean that seriously. I take pride in putting a good meal in front of Frank. Now, what if you have fixed and served the last meal from the food you have stored away for just such a situation. Can you replace your stock with more food? How? Can you grow a garden, milk a cow or goat, butcher animals, and preserve food without electricity? Think real hard about what you need to learn or acquire to be able to do these things, or have access to someone that does, that you can work for or share with in some fashion, to get the nutrition your family will need. Your husband will be busy making sure everything is working, providing water, heat, a way to cook and protection. The food production, preservation and preparing will probably be left to you. 

There are so many skills that will come into play in a long-term collapse scenario. What can you do now? What will you need to

know how to do then? There is no way to really know the answer to that question, but think about it. Again, acquire what you think you may need. Can you sew? Do you have needles and thread? Ways to mend clothes to get the longest wear out of them you can? Do you have extra fabric and/or extra clothes that you can wear when yours have become tattered, torn and threadbare? How are you going to treat any medical conditions that arise? Do you have supplies and the knowledge you need?

Another thing I discussed with my friend today was the talent of drawing attention to yourself, or remaining somewhat unnoticeable, or anonymous.

Do you live in such a way that you draw attention to yourself? Do you dress in such a way that people will notice you? Especially men? There is nothing wrong with being all woman, feminine, beautiful, and dressed nicely. But don’t kid yourself if you think having men oogle your chest with low cut shirts will not bring you unwanted attention if there is a collapse. If you have lived in such a way that men notice and will remember you because you want to dress in a sexy way to get attention, then you may get way more attention than you every bargained for when the chips are down and there is no one left to fight off the wolves. Something to prepare for way before it is a necessary part of survival.

For me the worst thing I can think of is having to leave my home. It almost literally makes me sick to my stomach. We have invested a lot of ourselves into our homestead. The garden soil has been enriched to a very productive state. Our animals are doing well at providing much of our nutrition. If a situation arose that caused us to have to abandon our home, I would be devastated. I can’t deny that. But would I give up? I would like to definitively answer no, but honestly there is no way to know that until the time comes. I practice many, many different survival scenarios in my mind on a regular basis, but not this one. It’s very difficult. But it is something we have started to discuss and talk about different possibilities and how we would handle them. So, I would encourage you to do the same, even though it may be the very last choice you may make, and then only under extreme circumstances.

There are many signs of impending changes, mighty changes about us. The whole world seems to get more complicated each and every day. Many, many economists are indicating just how fragile the entire global economy has become, and speak of major changes coming in the fall. World tensions between countries don’t seem to be doing anything but getting worse. The government chips away at our freedoms and liberty more and more everyday. There are times it seems that before long I will not be allowed to write these words any longer. So, before that time comes, I need to share these thoughts with you.

As women, we have a vital role to play in the coming changes of our world. We can feed and cloth our families making it possible for them to carry out their duties. We can love and support our husbands, helping to carry the load of providing the necessities of life, as well as protection for our home. Surviving will be hard work, very hard work, not something we really care to do everyday if we have a choice. And for now we do have a choice, so we need to choose to prepare for the time when we don’t. When choosing not to work very hard may be a choice to die.

If you are able, grow a garden this summer. A very serious, productive garden. Preserve as much of it as you can. Even if you don’t have a garden, buy and preserve as much food as you can. Look at your shelves and do some serious evaluating of the items you need to fill them. Items that may make all the difference in the world for your family in a radically changed world. Know how to protect yourself and be comfortable with your weapon of choice. Train your mind to be aware and ready at a moments notice. 

There have always been women who were up to the challenges of survival in some very harsh circumstances. We have had it real easy in our day and time, but not so long ago, it was anything but real easy. Even though I really, really wish it wasn’t so, the times are coming that we women will once again be faced with the challenges of survival in some very harsh circumstances. Prepare your mind first, then your home and family. Know the Lord and have Him on your side. Please be ready. The wolf is at the door.

Until next time – Fern

Have a Plan

Hello everybody, Frank here.

A few days back we received an email from a lady that has some questions. Here is the email, followed by my response. I hope you enjoy both.

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Hey Frank and Fern,

I was wondering if you’d consider doing an article on potential widow/widower-hood.  How that possibility affects your planning and how it should be something others at least give a thought to from time to time? 

It is something that often crosses my mind.  My husband is thirteen

years older than I.  Likely I will be the one left behind.  We made our last move with this in mind and solar is one of the last items on my list to get done. 

We moved to a place where we have a septic system and a well and a spring nearby. There is no separate trash or sewage bill as it is included in the property taxes for my county.  So, from where we were living we had a water bill, a trash bill, and an electric bill.  I’m trying to get it down where I have to pay my house taxes and that’s it period in widowhood other than house insurance which I hope to be in a financial position one day to be self-insuring on that item.  We live in an all electric house.  (Hate that as I’m a natural gas kinda gal.) But, we do have a woodstove so I can at least cook if the electric goes out/grid goes down.  (Along w/a couple of butane stoves. We got those when we lived in a condo so at least we could loan them to unprepared neighbors.)  We do have life insurance if that industry stays afloat.   

We are adding to our orchard yearly and expanding the garden and our gardening skills yearly.  I have a treed acreage that I could sell wood or trees from to the nearby sawmills.  We are debt free.  We have already bought our burial plots.  I put money back monthly for house taxes, new roof, new HVAC, etc. although my house is only 6 years old.  I don’t need a new roof or a new HVAC for a long time, but want to be ready if and when I do need them.  Same for our headstones, dentures, long term health care.  Many women have no idea how to handle money or their own financial needs looking towards retirement and are generally the poorer for it as they are generally the caretakers in their family and their working life ($$ opportunities) are lessened because of it.  Mine has been as I care for two disabled sons and now have aging parents.  My husband has helped me think through a timeline of action if he goes first… when to sell the second vehicle, which CDs to cash in first, which retirement account to draw down first, etc.

I had a long time friend lose his wife just this year rather unexpectedly, I’d love to hear about this topic from a male perspective as well.  How men can prepare in the case that they are widowed and how they think about preparing for their own demise and their family’s well being if they are the ones to pass first.

What do you think?  Have ya’ll a plan?  Maudlin I know, but I’m a practical person, I need to think these things through while I have time.

I am working on saving for a large solar addition of our own.  Our home site is not ideal (tall pines), but I think we could manage a wheel about solar panel.  As it is we have a small system now that we use in power down situations…small trickle solar panel, lawn mower battery, inverter…these allow a small electric lamp, coffee pot, toaster, drill, box fan, or other small draw electrical accessory to be used in an outage.  I think it cost me about $115 dollars a few years back to set it up.

Anyway, would love to hear ya’lls thoughts on the subject.  Even if it’s just a listing of your plans, maybe some other folks will chime in with helpful comments! 

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When we got married, I told Fern she would never have to worry

about money. Because I am one of those people that can get blood out of a turnip. If it means living poor, we have lived poor many a time, but she never had to worry about money and she never had to worry about food on the table. That’s the way it’s been since day one.

Moving along. Fern’s father passed away when she was very young, and that will lead into the next part of this article. When Fern and I got married, her mother insisted that we have lots of life insurance and I told her no, we’re not going to invest in life insurance, we’re going to invest in education and skills. You know the story about giving a man a fish and feeding him for a day? Teach a man to fish and feed him for a lifetime? Well, instead of putting that money into a life insurance plan, we invested our time and money into ourselves. Not just Fern, but me also. Because when we got married, I was going to marry a teacher. We kept adding degrees and certificates. So, that was my response to the need to buy life insurance.

The issue of marrying a teacher? When I started college full-time, I was a little older, ten to twelve years older than most college kids. I was tired of the big city racket, and wanted the type of job that would take me

anywhere that I wanted to go. The allure of having summers off just couldn’t be passed up. So I decided to become a school teacher and I was going to marry a school teacher, and we were going to live in little town America and escape the rat race. Here we are. Of course, there was a lot more detail to that plan, and there were many lean years there. But I think the lean years make you stronger, and we still do not have life insurance. Maybe this will make a good post someday, but if you read the history of insurance, it comes from a protection racket, that if you didn’t participate, you might get hurt. But that’s a different story.

Okay. The house. Our house is not all electric. We do have wood burning heat, if we choose. Our cookstove is propane. When we moved here the house had a large propane tank, and we supplemented it with a larger

propane tank. Now the only thing we use off of this propane is our cookstove, and I guesstimate we have approximately eight years worth of propane. The house we live in is standard stick frame construction, built with the intention of having perpetual grid supplied electricity. Long term I hope to replace the windows with double hung windows. One of the first additions we made to the house were full length east and west porches, which means that the porches are on the east and west side. Someday, we hope to have a greenhouse on the south side. We did replace the roof with heavy gauge metal roofing that should last our lifetimes. The exterior facade we replaced with a concrete type 4 x 8 sheet, called in some areas Hardy Backer. 

When we moved here we had two deep water wells dug. Fern and I installed a Simple Pump system in each one. We have planted fruit trees that failed, and then planted more fruit trees that failed. We have expanded the garden every year, which for the most part is a pretty good producer, supplemented with some failures. If you read this site, then you know we produce our own meat, milk, eggs, dairy products, and we hope to continue to do that with or without the economy prospering.

Everything we own is paid for. I’m going to talk about finances, but before I do, let me qualify something. Everything that I have comes from God. I thank God every day for the life He has given me and the opportunity to be here and participate. On occasion I forget who I am and where I come

from, and in a short manner I turn myself around, face my Father and thank Him for all that I have. Now, I’m not a stand on the corner Bible preacher, and can’t see that I’m going to be anytime soon, but I know where everything I have comes from. Okay? Okay.


Now, having qualified my position on my Creator, this plan developed about 30 years ago, maybe a little longer. I have had the opportunity in my life to see what money does to families, and I chose not to go that route. My choice, my design, my plan. I’ve chosen to live a humble life style. None of this ‘look at me’ stuff. Simple, humble and functional. If I can’t afford it, I don’t buy it. Cute means nothing in my world. What’s the old woodworking saying? Form follows function. When I do buy something, I buy the best I can afford. Not the most expensive, but one that will last and do the job for the longest period of time. An example. When Fern and I first got married, a close relative of ours was a licensed gun dealer, FFL. We bought a handful of cheap pistols. Sometimes they would work, sometimes they wouldn’t, but they were pretty. One day it dawned on me, if my bride is going to carry a weapon in her purse, then being cute means nothing. It has got to work. Since then my bride has carried the most reliable handgun made. It’s black and it works. Do your own research. It’s not the most expensive, it’s not the prettiest, but it’s the most reliable handgun on this planet. And some people look good in black. But this is my point, if you’re going to invest good, hard earned money, get the best product you can afford.

Investments. As stated earlier, we invested heavily in education and training. Often times this training was provided free by the government. First aid, CPR, EMT, Police Academy, Firefighter, and Military. As we speak right now I am taking a CERT course provided free by the government. Yes, I have to invest my time, and I have to put out some effort, but this is training that I have wanted for years.

Financial investments. Fern and I invested in a few retirement accounts. We put money in, our employer matched. Now 25 to 30 years later, we are reaping the benefits of these accounts. One of these programs also provided a life time medical insurance plan. These are things we invested in for years and years. This did not happen overnight. If I die, which I will someday, all of my investments will automatically switch to Fern. There  

will not be any change in program or financial status. If Fern passes first, the same applies for her investments, they will automatically switch to me. I know some will say, that’s not fair. But first, let me assure you that every investment that I have I worked for. Every piece of education that I have, I earned by the sweat of my brow. In a month when I complete my CERT training, and I get a certificate of completion, it will be because I worked for it and earned it. Key words there. Worked for and earned. Thirty something years ago when Fern and I started this path that we are traveling, there was a plan, and if you will plan, then you can do the same thing too, because nobody is going to give it to you. We, Fern and I, have worked for, done without, and earned everything that we have. If one of us dies before the other, the other person will be taken care of.

Okay, let’s talk church. If you are a spiritual being, then I would recommend that you attend a local church. It’s just good brotherhood. If you’re looking for the perfect church, you ain’t gonna find it, because nothing is perfect. So accept the fact that people are different, and go to church. If and when things get bad, you’ll be glad that you have a church family. I harbor no ill feelings against TV preachers, if that’s your cup of tea, good for you. But I would highly recommend a local church. Even if you disagree with some of the doctrine, focus on the big picture, let the little stuff slide, and have your hiney in church.


I hope this answers some of the primary questions from the email that we received, and I also hope it opens doors for thought. There is nothing special about Fern or I, we just worked all of our lives, saved a little bit here and there, tried to be good decent people, but we always remembered who we were, where we came from and where we are going. Tonight when I go to bed, I will get down on my knees and thank God.

We’ll talk more later. Frank

So You’re Prepared….Really?? A Re-Post

Here is another older post that was written about a year ago. Frank and I have been re-posting some of these older pieces that were originally published when our readership was much smaller. It’s odd sometimes to go back and read what you have written. There are times it seems like the words were written by someone else, someone familiar, but not quite me. This is one of those pieces. I am grateful for the inspiration we are given, to guide us what we are to share. I hope this article will give you something to think about.

Until next time – Fern

Originally published January 1, 2014

So You’re Prepared…..Really??

It’s one thing to buy a couple of extra cans or cases of green beans or bullets. It’s another thing to prepare for a crisis or disaster. It’s another thing to know that something bad this way comes and try to get a mind set to deal with it. It’s another thing to have a garden and learn how to grow and preserve your own food. It’s a whole different situation to live in a manner that will allow you to survive and hopefully thrive regardless of the machinations of the world about you.

So, you’re a prepper. You have your bandaids, green beans and bullets. You have your ramming vehicle. You have the camo paint to put on your face so you can be invisible to incoming bad guys. You read all the right things, know the lingo and can comment with the best of them. You can talk the talk.

My question is: Do you walk the walk? If you truly believe that major changes are coming into the lives of each and everyone of us, what are you doing on an every day basis to be able to live with that change? Happy New Year! Time is wasting and the changes that are coming may be here sooner than you think.

We recently had an ice storm. We didn’t leave the house for five days. When I went back to work the vast majority of the people I work with talked

about how hard it was to be ‘trapped’ at home. They couldn’t stand it. They just HAD TO GO SOMEWHERE! Anywhere. And see somebody, anybody, even if it was a stranger. Some of them went to the big box store just to have somewhere to go. We don’t understand. Why does everyone have to go just to be going even if there is really no where to go to or nothing to do when you get there? What are all of these people going to do when they cannot ever go again? Will they go crazy? Are you one of these people?

If you think you have read enough and stocked up enough to be fine when the SHTF that’s great. But do you have enough experience and hands on knowledge to put it to effective use when the time comes? Because the time is coming, and if you aren’t truly prepared with proven skills you will need, then it will be too late. 

There is no way we can learn, master and do everything. It is humanly impossible. That is why man was not intended to live alone. But, guess what? If you are not able to survive, and you don’t have any necessary

skills and/or knowledge, you will be of no use to anyone. In fact, you will be a burden to be discarded or run off, because you will be just another useless mouth to feed. Sound harsh? How will you feel if there are people that expect you to take care of them? Not only provide for their necessities, but for their wants as well in a collapse scenario? How would it feel to listen to them whine about being hungry, dirty, tired or bored when it is all you can do to hold it together mentally and physically? How long would you allow that person to remain in your presence eating up precious food that could be used to feed someone that was productive, instead of destructive, in a life and death situation? Not long, I think. Are you ready for that?

So. Are you really prepared? Do some serious soul searching. It’s one thing to join a ‘fad’ that sounds really cool and gets attention from your

friends. It’s a whole different life style to really live in such a manner that you are as self-reliant as possible. For example. We have yet to have our cheddar cheese turn out the same way twice. Most of them still have a little of that strong after taste. Edible, but not totally delicious. We have made about 25 wheels over two years. Experience makes the difference and we are still working at it.

Another example. Gardening. Some years things make and some years they don’t. This year we had a lot of aphids. Last year we didn’t. There is always something to deal with that takes knowledge and experience. This past summer as we evaluated our garden, there seemed to be a lot of food out there. But as we really looked at it and tried to picture surviving on it alone, we knew we would be starving. That is a real reality check. It’s one thing to think we know and can do what is necessary, but do we really know enough? I seriously doubt it. This evaluation comes after 25 years of the same survival mindset. There are so many things that take time and trial and error to really learn and understand. 

One more example. One of our top producing does just had her kids early and they all died. I never would have thought she would have any difficulty. She has been here since she was five months old, and has had five sets of strong healthy kids. Why? We only have a few theories, nothing conclusive. What if that was the meat we were depending on for the coming year? Would we be able to make it? Would we be able to find an alternate source of meat? Maybe. Maybe not.

There are always going to be things thrown in your path that you did not expect and may not have the knowledge or skills to deal with effectively.

Waiting to really learn and do many of the things that will be necessary in a survival situation, when the time comes, will be way too late. It is not enough to ‘play’ at being a prepper. It is not enough to say, “I have my food storage.” Do you eat it? Do you rotate it? Is it food that your body is accustomed to, or when the time comes that you have to eat it because it is all you have, will it make you sick because you’re not used to it? And if it does, do you know how to treat and counter that sickness without outside medical attention or running down to the store for some anti-diarrhea medicine?

In our day and age of movies, television, video games and a plethora of electronic fictional media, we come to accept and expect the outlandish, fantasy games, stories, and situational excerpts as ‘normal’. This is where the good guy always wins, or the 20 people you shoot and kill in the

game get up and show up in the next game. All that blood wasn’t real. The problem of the day in the 30 minute sitcom gets solved in under 15 minutes, subtracting time for all of those realistic morphed commercials. Then you can always go to the store to get out of the house and be with all of those strangers you love and buy more chemicalized dead food to eat that is killing you and yours. How in the world will people that live these lives be able to deal with, let alone survive in a collapse situation? I fear for them. Greatly. Man has become too distracted by the world. People fill their lives with meaningless activities; going here, going there, always busy doing something. The person that is always busy is the modern way to be. Staying home is something to be loathed and looked down upon. You mean you didn’t go….see….do…..get…..show off……???? How could you? The distractions of the world are there for a reason, to hypnotize and trap you into doing things that don’t and will never matter. We all have them; those distractions we waste our time on.

The self-reliant life is not a thing you do, it is who you are. It is your life. That doesn’t mean the comforts and amazing luxuries of the world are not utilized and appreciated. I love air conditioning in the summer here when

it is 100 degrees and the humidity is 90%. I have long prayed if we were to lose electricity forever that it would happen in the winter so our bodies will have a chance to adjust to the heat gradually instead of suddenly. But I doubt I will get to choose when that moment arrives. And arrive it will, either from a continued long, slow decline or with a bang. One way or another, we all know there are major, life-altering changes headed our way. Even if you only know it on a gut level, if you are here, reading this, you know it’s coming. So, what are you doing about it?


We have entered a New Year, 2014. There are many times that we didn’t think we would still be sitting here, fat and happy, enjoying the internet and talking with you by now. We are truly grateful we are. I challenge you to sit down and pray about your situation. Seek the guidance of the Lord on what your real priorities should be. Then listen. Really take the time to listen and ponder. We have no doubt the only reason we have started and continue this blog is because, for some strange reason, God wants us to. There is someone, somewhere, that He wants to read or see something that will help them be more prepared in some form or fashion. So here we are. God is calling you and giving you this precious time. We pray you take full advantage of it. The time is short.

Until next time – Fern

So You’re Prepared…Really??

It’s one thing to buy a couple of extra cans or cases of green beans or bullets. It’s another thing to prepare for a crisis or disaster. It’s another thing to know that something bad this way comes and try to get a mind set to deal with it. It’s another thing to have a garden and learn how to grow and preserve your own food. It’s a whole different situation to live in a manner that will allow you to survive and hopefully thrive regardless of the machinations of the world about you.

So, you’re a prepper. You have your bandaids, green beans and bullets. You have your ramming vehicle. You have the camo paint to put on your face so you can be invisible to incoming bad guys. You read all the right things, know the lingo and can comment with the best of them. You can talk the talk.

My question is: Do you walk the walk? If you truly believe that major changes are coming into the lives of each and everyone of us, what are you doing on an every day basis to be able to live with that change? Happy New Year! Time is wasting and the changes that are coming may be here sooner than you think.

We recently had an ice storm. We didn’t leave the house for five days. When I went back to work the vast majority of the people I work with talked

about how hard it was to be ‘trapped’ at home. They couldn’t stand it. They just HAD TO GO SOMEWHERE! Anywhere. And see somebody, anybody, even if it was a stranger. Some of them went to the big box store just to have somewhere to go. We don’t understand. Why does everyone have to go just to be going even if there is really no where to go to or nothing to do when you get there? What are all of these people going to do when they cannot ever go again? Will they go crazy? Are you one of these people?

If you think you have read enough and stocked up enough to be fine when the SHTF that’s great. But do you have enough experience and hands on knowledge to put it to effective use when the time comes? Because the time is coming, and if you aren’t truly prepared with proven skills you will need, then it will be too late. 

There is no way we can learn, master and do everything. It is humanly impossible. That is why man was not intended to live alone. But, guess what? If you are not able to survive, and you don’t have any necessary

skills and/or knowledge, you will be of no use to anyone. In fact, you will be a burden to be discarded or run off, because you will be just another useless mouth to feed. Sound harsh? How will you feel if there are people that expect you to take care of them? Not only provide for their necessities, but for their wants as well in a collapse scenario? How would it feel to listen to them whine about being hungry, dirty, tired or bored when it is all you can do to hold it together mentally and physically? How long would you allow that person to remain in your presence eating up precious food that could be used to feed someone that was productive, instead of destructive, in a life and death situation? Not long, I think. Are you ready for that?

So. Are you really prepared? Do some serious soul searching. It’s one thing to join a ‘fad’ that sounds really cool and gets attention from your

friends. It’s a whole different life style to really live in such a manner that you are as self-reliant as possible. For example. We have yet to have our cheddar cheese turn out the same way twice. Most of them still have a little of that strong after taste. Edible, but not totally delicious. We have made about 25 wheels over two years. Experience makes the difference and we are still working at it.

Another example. Gardening. Some years things make and some years they don’t. This year we had a lot of aphids. Last year we didn’t. There is always something to deal with that takes knowledge and experience. This past summer as we evaluated our garden, there seemed to be a lot of food out there. But as we really looked at it and tried to picture surviving on it alone, we knew we would be starving. That is a real reality check. It’s one thing to think we know and can do what is necessary, but do we really know enough? I seriously doubt it. This evaluation comes after 25 years of the same survival mindset. There are so many things that take time and trial and error to really learn and understand. 

One more example. One of our top producing does just had her kids early and they all died. I never would have thought she would have any difficulty. She has been here since she was five months old, and has had five sets of strong healthy kids. Why? We only have a few theories, nothing conclusive. What if that was the meat we were depending on for the coming year? Would we be able to make it? Would we be able to find an alternate source of meat? Maybe. Maybe not.

There are always going to be things thrown in your path that you did not expect and may not have the knowledge or skills to deal with effectively.

Waiting to really learn and do many of the things that will be necessary in a survival situation, when the time comes, will be way too late. It is not enough to ‘play’ at being a prepper. It is not enough to say, “I have my food storage.” Do you eat it? Do you rotate it? Is it food that your body is accustomed to, or when the time comes that you have to eat it because it is all you have, will it make you sick because you’re not used to it? And if it does, do you know how to treat and counter that sickness without outside medical attention or running down to the store for some anti-diarrhea medicine?

In our day and age of movies, television, video games and a plethora of electronic fictional media, we come to accept and expect the outlandish, fantasy games, stories, and situational excerpts as ‘normal’. This is where the good guy always wins, or the 20 people you shoot and kill in the

game get up and show up in the next game. All that blood wasn’t real. The problem of the day in the 30 minute sitcom gets solved in under 15 minutes, subtracting time for all of those realistic morphed commercials. Then you can always go to the store to get out of the house and be with all of those strangers you love and buy more chemicalized dead food to eat that is killing you and yours. How in the world will people that live these lives be able to deal with, let alone survive in a collapse situation? I fear for them. Greatly. Man has become too distracted by the world. People fill their lives with meaningless activities; going here, going there, always busy doing something. The person that is always busy is the modern way to be. Staying home is something to be loathed and looked down upon. You mean you didn’t go….see….do…..get…..show off……???? How could you? The distractions of the world are there for a reason, to hypnotize and trap you into doing things that don’t and will never matter. We all have them; those distractions we waste our time on.

The self-reliant life is not a thing you do, it is who you are. It is your life. That doesn’t mean the comforts and amazing luxuries of the world are not utilized and appreciated. I love air conditioning in the summer here when

it is 100 degrees and the humidity is 90%. I have long prayed if we were to lose electricity forever that it would happen in the winter so our bodies will have a chance to adjust to the heat gradually instead of suddenly. But I doubt I will get to choose when that moment arrives. And arrive it will, either from a continued long, slow decline or with a bang. One way or another, we all know there are major, life-altering changes headed our way. Even if you only know it on a gut level, if you are here, reading this, you know it’s coming. So, what are you doing about it?


We have entered a New Year, 2014. There are many times that we didn’t think we would still be sitting here, fat and happy, enjoying the internet and talking with you by now. We are truly grateful we are. I challenge you to sit down and pray about your situation. Seek the guidance of the Lord on what your real priorities should be. Then listen. Really take the time to listen and ponder. We have no doubt the only reason we have started and continue this blog is because, for some strange reason, God wants us to. There is someone, somewhere, that He wants to read or see something that will help them be more prepared in some form or fashion. So here we are. God is calling you and giving you this precious time. We pray you take full advantage of it. The time is short.

Until next time – Fern