Virtually nothing in America’s top-down financial and political realms is actually transparent, accountable, authentic or honest.
Opting out will increasingly be the best (or only) choice for tens of millions of people globally. Opting out means leaving the complicated, costly and now unaffordable / unbearable life you’ve been living for a new way of life that is radically less complex, less costly and less deranging.
At a time when the world is already being hit with major crisis after major crisis, our sun is behaving in ways that we have never seen before.
For as long as records have been kept, the sun has never been quieter than it has been in 2019 and 2020, and as you will see below we are being warned that we have now entered “a very deep solar minimum”.
Unfortunately, other very deep solar minimums throughout history have corresponded with brutally cold temperatures and horrific global famines, and of course this new solar minimum comes at a time when the United Nations is already warning that we are on the verge of “biblical” famines around the world. So we better hope that the sun wakes up soon, because the alternative is almost too horrifying to talk about.
Without the sun, life on Earth could not exist, and so the fact that it is behaving so weirdly right now should be big news.
Now, more than ever it seems like a good time to store a little more, and above all try to “stay away from crowds” as Uncle Remus says.
The pandemic this year has shown just how vulnerable our “just in time” delivery systems are. With literally tons of food being thrown away because of logistical issues, and the potential shortage of meat due to the concentration among just a few large factory farms, relying on supplies being available in tighter times such as these is just foolish.
FEMA says everyone should have three days of food & water, but as we’re only nine meals away from anarchy, one surely ought to try and have a little more.
Where to start? There are many good articles about preparing on a budget. Whether it’s a pandemic, a solar minimum, or even just an old fashioned hurricane, better to have more and not need it, than to want in an emergency. Start today – Ben
As the coronavirus pandemic shook the country this spring, grocery stores quickly sold out of essentials and produce departments were emptied. Fearing food shortages, and afraid to expose themselves to other shoppers in the store, many following orders to stay at home came up with the same idea: pandemic gardens.
It happened to be spring planting season as shelter-in-place orders came down in the U.S. Even people unfamiliar with gardening began placing orders for seeds and those selling them saw exponential spikes in business.
“Not in any recorded history have there been sales at these levels, certainly in the last 20 years,” Dave Thompson, director of sales and operations at organic seed company Seeds of Change in Rancho Dominguez, California, tells PEOPLE. “This is so unprecedented. We’re doing the best we can. You can’t capture all of this business.”
During my recent move, I was drawing down some stocked items. One of the things we decided to consume and restock post move, was a bunch of Spam that I had acquired from 2011 to 2014. My wife, who rarely allows me in the kitchen, had never taken an interest in the preps I had stocked, so the Spam didn’t rotate. This gave us a nice test of how well Spam stayed on a shelf in long term storage.
The Spam had been stored in our basement, which was temperature controlled, so it wasn’t subjected to years of wild temperature fluctuations, but it had been sitting on the shelf for 5 to 8 years. Our basement in that house was also dry. There was no point in moving the Spam rather than using it and replacing it after the move.
If you are getting to where you have a decent inventory of food, you might want to sample things that you bought to see if they are what you expected. We also are rebuilding our “deep pantry”.
One authors’ experience with a variety of long term storage foods. If you’re going to be ready for the long term, one important thing is to rotate and test your foodstuffs regularly.
As a new gardener, I often found the task of growing prize-winning tomatoes and succulent melons very daunting. Can I say succulent melons here? Get your head out of the gutter! But growing and drying your own herbs, now that was a new task.
Gardening has never come naturally to me. But I learn and grow each and every year. I finally began to master tomatoes by the third year of gardening. But I’ve still never mastered the green bean. It’s easy to get discouraged when you’re gardening, but I’ve found one thing that I can never kill. I suppose I could if I drenched it in chemicals, but ultimately, they’re very forgiving. What is it, you ask? Why, herbs, of course!
Herbs are one of the easiest things in the world to grow and maintain. Drying your own herbs is one of the easiest skills to learn, and will come in handy often. Whether you’re drying them once harvested, making a tincture, preserving dried herbs into spice rubs, or simply hanging them until you’re ready to use them. There are plenty of ways to grow and preserve herbs on your homestead.
Lots of useful information, a good read.
The photo above is a salad without a speck of lettuce. Taken at Chacra d’Dago in Villa Rica Peru, home of an amazing biodynamic farm. -Ben
When pundits and analysts say our country isn’t going to come out of the coronavirus pandemic the same, they know what they’re talking about.
Already, things are different. For instance, the fact that so many Americans have been so willing to give up their basic freedoms to elected leaders with no appreciable resistance, ostensibly to ‘protect them’ from the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19), is a change that future tyrants are not going to forget, of that you can be certain.
We have also discovered that our ‘just in time’ supply chain is wholly impractical and unreliable if demand ratchets up even a little bit, as we’ve seen since the pandemic began. There are still stores in areas that don’t have toilet paper yet, for example, while shortages of food, water, cleaning supplies and other commodities needed to protect ourselves from infection are long gone.
We’ve discovered that China really isn’t a reliable global partner and that the Communist leadership is willing to let tens of thousands or millions die for a mistake.
Finally, we are learning that more Americans realize our urban centers are disease-ridden death traps when pestilence and pandemics break out.
CNBC reports that the demand for rural homes and property has skyrocketed over the course of the pandemic, and as sickness and death spread throughout our largest cities, the demand grew even more intense:
“We have seen that people are more interested in that house at the foot of the mountains by the lake,” Glenn Kelman said on CNBC’s “Closing Bell.” “Rural demand is much stronger right now than urban demand, and that’s a flip from where it’s been for the longest time, where everybody wanted to live in the city. We’ll see how it comes back, but there seems to be a profound, psychological change among consumers who are looking for houses.”
We’re seeing a lot more activity than we have seen in quite some time out here in the Yucca, Arizona area. Some are already country folks and adapt easily, but for long time city dwellers, the off grid lifestyle is a little intimidating, and of course costly as well.
Many can’t seem to believe the low land prices here, but it’s raw land, and any improvements are on your dime. It’s far to get supplies, yet not so far as to be overwhelming. We do get UPS & Fedex so for now, everything is mostly just a few clicks away. One just plans trips to town with more care as to be sure to get everything. “Honey, I forgot the milk,” means no milk for a while.
The questions are the same: how much is a septic system? How much is solar? What about water? None are short answers, and one is advised to begin now to understand all of the many things that make one off grid, and more importantly self sufficient.
There are always lots of questions, just call me the answer guy – Ben
Growing medicinal plants are a great way to ensure garden sustainability and more notably, have access to natural medicine when you need it most. When I introduced more herbs in my garden, I noticed it had a profound impact on the vegetables and fruits I was growing. It also encouraged beneficial insects and birds to visit my garden and this helped cut down on plants being eaten.
Because of this observation, I changed my focus from solely growing to eat and, instead, worked to create a welcoming growing environment. Not only were my plants healthier, but I had access to natural herbs to use for making extracts and poultices. The following are reasons I feel gardeners should adopt adding medicinal herbs to the garden.
7 Reasons Why You Should Have a Medicinal Garden
1.) have fresh cut herbs to use for natural medicine, you have access to the freshest forms of their healing properties. For example, what if you cut your hand and did not have a bandage.
Did you know that the sage leaf can be wrapped around a wound and used as a natural band-aid? Or, if the bleeding from that cut was so bad that it wouldn’t stop. Did you know that a few shakes of some cayenne pepper can help control the bleed? Or, if you have a severe bruise, make a poultice. It’s one of the easiest and fastest ways to use herbal medicine.
2.) Calm your senses with medicinal teas. (Click to read more)
Read more at the link. Pictured above is Ephedra which is quite common here. Known as “Mormon Tea,” it’s said to be a wonderful decongestant. It must be simmered for at least 20 minutes prior to drinking. It’s quite stimulating, and should be avoided by those with heart conditions.
Americans are panic hoarding plant seeds as the coronavirus outbreak confines millions to their homes, crashes the economy, and disrupts food supply chains. This has resulted in people questioning their food security.
A Google search of “buy seeds” has rocketed to an all-time high across the US in March to early April, the same time as supermarket shelves went bare.
Seed companies who spoke with CBS News said they have stopped taking new orders after unprecedented demand. George Ball, chairman of Pennsylvania-based Burpee Seeds, said the recent increase in new orders is “just unbelievable.” The company will start accepting orders again on Wednesday after it stopped taking new ones for several days to catch up on the backlog.
Americans in quarantine are becoming increasingly concerned about their food security. What has shocked many is that food on supermarket shelves that existed one day, could be completely wiped out in minutes via panic hoarding. Some people are now trying to restore the comfort of food security by planting “Pandemic Gardens.”
“If I had to put my thumb on it, I would say people are worried about their food security right now,” said Emily Rose Haga, the executive director of the Seed Savers Exchange, an Iowa-based nonprofit devoted to heirloom seeds.
Tip: When building up your disaster food stockpile, think about how you will use the foods in meals. Otherwise, you could end up with a lot of foods you don’t like. Or you might end up with disproportionate amounts of food, like 30lbs of pasta but not sauce to go on it.
In my book Disaster Preparedness for Women, I show exactly how to plan a food stockpile so you can make healthy, balanced meals. The book also covers all the preparedness essentials so you are ready for anything. Get the book here.
Here are 11 tasty ways to use dried beans Try these delicious dried bean recipes.
1. Red Bean Pasta Sauce
Click on the link for 10 more useful recipes. You did realize that you’d have to eat all those didn’t you?
Here’s a great list of quick vegetables that everyone should see.
We’ve grown them all!
We only need a few weeks to produce some nutritious vegetables and enjoy them for a great lunch or dinner.
Imagine having fresh spinach harvested four to six weeks after planting. Even better, a vegetable garden in your backyard will complement that verdant, green lawn and add some color and texture to your landscape.
There are many wholesome veggies you can grow, relatively quickly, a few steps away from your kitchen. Here are five vegetables to get you started.