Archive | October, 2014

Tuesday Tunes:Rock Classics of the 1960s

28 Oct

This is a one hour compilation video of hits from the 1960s. There are a lot of good songs here as well as video clips from the decade. If you are a fan of the 1960s I think you will enjoy the video clips. Enjoy!

Homestead Update.

25 Oct


I have been trying to get my local dump truck driver to bring some dirt for a month and today he finally came through. He found a source of dirt from a construction site, and the dirt had some bricks and gravel in it so he gave me a discount. Usually he charges $100 for a load but this was only $75, so I had him bring 6 loads, which was all he could get. I needed the dirt to finish installing my big culvert so I could get to the back of our property. Those six loads will also give me a lot of left over dirt to use in the future on other projects.


I finally had enough dirt to get the culvert buried so I crossed over and began to clear out a path to the back. I had to quit before I finished today, but I got within 50 feet of being to the back fence line.


Oh, the truck driver also brought this load of stuff to me for free. They are constructing a new building on an old parking lot and they are digging up the pavement. This is a mixture of old asphalt and gravel and when the driver said he would bring it for free I said absolutely! I will use the gravel on the trail across the culvert, and pick up the asphalt chunks and lay it on the side slopes to help control erosion.


Prepping wise, I discovered the carburetor on my generator was varnished up and it wouldn’t start. So I took it apart and cleaned it up, especially the needle valve and float. After a good cleaning it fired up and ran like a champ. Success! All this Ebola talk also got me thinking about our food supplies. We have enough canned goods to last 3 months, and we have some Mountain House freeze-dried stores set back for real emergencies. But I wanted to add some more and I discovered Sam’s Club has recently started selling long-term food supplies. I was not familiar with this brand of food so I bought a sample kit to try out and see if it is worth storing.



Sam’s is carrying two different brands of long-term supplies, so I am trying them both.


This is one of the packages in the plastic tub. You can see the best by date is Sept 2034. That’s 20 years! But if it doesn’t taste edible, it doesn’t matter how long it lasts does it? I’ll let you know how it tastes after we get a chance to try them out.


I also bought a bee suit! I am going to a local bee keepers association meeting next week and I am hoping some kind soul will invite me to come look inside his hives. Maybe I can hold a frame in my hand and find some eggs and larvae. I would also like someone to show me the difference in pollen, nectar, water, and uncapped honey. Just in case I get an invitation, I wanted to have my suit ready. Keep prepping everyone!

Tuesday Tunes:Iron Butterfly;In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida

21 Oct

This is another strange tune from 1968. Supposedly the song has a story as follows: A girl is at the funeral for her boyfriend. She hears him calling for her from his casket, begging her “oh won’t you come with me and take my hand”, etc. All of a sudden, she is swept up by his friends and placed in a casket next to him. The drum solo starts out fast, signifying her heartbeat, which slows down as the drumming slows down. There’s even some screeching noises in the song – her fingernails clawing at the casket lid. She dies. Then the song picks up again, they are together again, in death. Lovely isn’t it? Anyway just another memory from my formative years, Enjoy!

Homestead Update

18 Oct


It rained nearly every day this week, we probably had a total of 5 inches total so not much was accomplished this week. You might remember I planted 4 fig bushes in the orchard last Fall, and after the hard winter we had they all froze back to the ground. Well,  3 of them came back from the roots and I eventually pulled up the 4th one, trunk and rootball together. I was going to throw it in the gully and I spotted a washout where the ground was eroding so I just dropped it in the hole. As I was throwing away some junk last week I noticed the bush was regrowing from the roots. I thought for sure it was dead! Now I have a fig bush where I definitely don’t need it to be growing. I guess I will dig it up next spring and move it somewhere else.


A few weeks ago I also discovered these red pears in the grocery store. I have never tasted red pears before and I think they are delicious so I went on-line to find some trees to plant in the orchard. I ordered 4 trees from a nursery in Georgia and they shipped the trees via FedEx. Before I ordered the trees, I watched a video on their website showing how to plant the trees after they arrived. In the video, the box arrived and when it was opened up, the tree was 5 feet tall with pretty green leaves and a large rootball. Well, that wasn’t what I received!


My box arrived looking like this! (not the nursery’s fault ) The package looked like it was run over by the truck, repeatedly!


This is 4 trees chopped off about 3 feet tall, leafless, and with a few miserable feeder roots attached. I don’t know if they will survive or not but I planted them the day they arrived and watered them in so we shall see next Spring. Oh, on the right side of the trees you can see 3 twigs sticking out. Those are 2-year-old bearing age Muscadine vines. Not too impressive are they? I planted them as well so we shall see if they survive. I am definitely keeping my receipt and if they are dead next Spring I am going for a refund even if I have to drive all the way to Georgia to get it, I have their address!


I also encountered this Cottonmouth Moccasin last week. He was a little sluggish from the cool weather but he was still nasty, nasty, nasty. But no one will have to worry about encountering him anymore, I beat him to a pulp! keep prepping everyone, and watch where you step!

More Healthy Eating

17 Oct


This is my healthy breakfast from this morning. I had oatmeal with an added spoonful of ground oat germ with an English Muffin (low Fat). And that jar sitting by the bowl you ask? That is a jar of Purple Hull Pea Jelly we bought at a Farmers Market. It is delicious, so I am convinced you can make jelly out of anything as long as you use lots of sugar!


This is my version of “healthy Pizza”. for the crust I use a low fat tortilla and the toppings are all reduced fat as well. It might not be as good as a real pizza, but it will help satisfy your craving.


I took this picture several weeks ago before I starting eating healthy. This is a waxed sack which held 3 fried chicken strips purchased at a convenience store. I looked at the back of the sack and thought “HUH?” you mean to tell me no one in the world can claim to cook “Homestyle Fried Chicken” without violation of a trademark? So being the curious type, I went to the US Trademarks Website and looked it up and it was indeed registered, but with a disclaimer.

Published for Opposition
July 17, 2007

Registration Number

Registration Date
October 2, 2007


Attorney of Record
Hermann Ivester

Prior Registrations


Description of Mark
Color is not claimed as a feature of the mark. The mark consists of the words Homestyle Fried Chicken and a design.


It is registered as a trademark, but it is not exclusive except in regards to their funny little logo of a cartoon chicken which includes the words Homestyle Fried Chicken. So apparently if you have a restaurant and you claim to sell homestyle fried chicken you are not in violation of a trademark. Whew! That takes a load off of my mind! Keep prepping everyone!

Tuesday Tunes:The Chambers Brothers;Time Has Come Today

14 Oct

This is a strange tune from the Vietnam War Era. This video has many interesting images as well, although most of you who were actually in Vietnam probably have no interest in seeing any more images from that time. You probably have enough images in your head already, but for the rest of us, Enjoy!

Backup Water Supply

11 Oct

I finally got around to doing something about a secondary source of water for the Homestead. I found a man from Missouri that was willing to come and drill a shallow well, and it turned out he used the “water jet” method of drilling the well. If you don’t know what that is, you can go to Youtube and watch some videos of that method of well drilling.


This man is 86 years old, and he is still growing strong! We had talked on the phone several times over the past month but we couldn’t get our schedules to mesh until last week. He shows up early in the morning, and says his helper didn’t show up for work, but he wanted to come anyway and not disappoint me since we took so long to get together. I told him if he didn’t mind I would be glad to help and do what I could. Well, the first thing he did was take a shovel and start digging a hole and he said “Uh-Oh”, This ground sure is hard! I said let me get my tractor with my backhoe attachment and I will have the holes dug in no time. He wanted 2 holes dug about a foot apart, with each hole being about 2X3 feet in size and 2 feet deep. After I dug the holes, he dug a shallow trench connecting the holes. I didn’t know why he wanted 2 holes instead of one large hole, but I found out later.


He had a 250 gallon tank of water in the back of his pick-up truck, and we filled both holes with water. He had a small 2.5 HP water pump which sucked the water out of the hole and pumped the water to the boring tool, which was nothing more than 5 foot long pieces of PVC pipe.


The first piece of pipe had jagged teeth cut into the working end, and the other end screwed into a metal T joint on the other end. The outlet hose from the pump was attached to the top of the T, and the sides of the T had pipes screwed into it to form a handle. As the water pumps through the pipe, you use a twisting motion to loosen the dirt in the bottom of the hole. The water bubbles up from the borehole, runs into the first reservoir hole, goes through the shallow trench into the second reservoir hole where it is picked up by the pump and recirculated into the boring pipe. The reason for two reservoir holes is the water coming up from the bore hole is bringing up lots of mud and sand and other debris, and having two holes allows some of this material to drop out in the first hole and helps the water stay a little cleaner so the pump doesn’t have to recirculate all that junk. After the bore hole reaches five feet deep, the pump is shut off and the pipe is unscrewed from the handle and a second piece of pipe is attached to the first pipe on one end and the T handle on the other. The pump starts circulating the water and the process continues. The driller and I took turns twisting and pushing on the boring tool, and it took us probably 2 hours to get it as deep as it needed to go.


After boring down to 42 feet, he pulled the boring pipes out of the hole and inserted a 2 inch PVC casing into the hole we bored. The lowest piece of PVC is a factory supplied well screen much like the homemade version pictured above. There are tiny slits cut along the length of the pipe which allow the water to enter and at the same time filter out some of the sand. The factory version we used had much thinner slits cut into it which should be more efficient than the version pictured above. Anyway, now that the pipe was inserted into the well, the driller hooked his pump onto the pipe and pumped water up from the depths. The water wasn’t exactly gushing out of the hole, but he said it would get better with use. He let it run for 15 minutes and the water certainly cleared up a lot, and he said it would be crystal clear someday. When I got ready to pay, he charges $8 per foot, and my well was 42 feet which was $336. He said he wanted to give me a discount since I had to help and do the work myself but I said “Heck No, I’m not doing that”! I looked at this as a valuable learning experience so I didn’t mind being actively involved in this project. What I didn’t say was now that I have seen this done firsthand, I can rig up my own boring rig and dig another well myself next time! I had intentions of putting a quick coupler on the pipe where I could use a pitcher pump like this one,


but after doing research, I am worried because these pumps are only rated for pulling water up from 25 feet. It is a matter of physics, that water can only be siphoned up from a maximum depth of one atmospheric pressure which is 33.9 feet. Since my well is 42 feet I don’t think this will work.


I had also planned on using a quick coupler to attach this gas power pump I bought from Harbor Freight. It was on sale for $179 and I had a coupon for 25% off which made it $130 plus $7 shipping. The reviews were positive so I got this model instead of getting a more expensive unit elsewhere. This pump is almost identical to the one the well driller was using. But strangely enough, as I was reading the manual for this pump, it also stated it was intended to bring water up from only 25 feet. I know a pump like this will work on my well because I saw it in person. Maybe the water is rising up in the pipe and it is not really 42 feet down to the water? Anyone else have any experience with shallow wells like this? I’d like to hear from you. I really hope this works out because being a prepper you know I need a backup system! Someday I may have a submersible well with a solar panel setup to power it! I’ll let you know how my new well operates as soon I get a chance to hook it up. We have received several inches of rain this week with more predicted through Monday so it may be a while before I get a chance to work with it. Until then, keep prepping everyone!

Traveling Around

9 Oct


As I was traveling around working last week, I took some time to slow down and enjoy the scenery. This is a barge working it’s way up the Mississippi River.



I’ve seen all sorts of mushrooms around the homestead this week. Those round ones we called Poof Balls when I was a kid. You wait for them to mature and turn brown, stomp on them and they go POOF!, a big cloud of spores will go flying away.



Bright blue skies and puffy white clouds over the homestead.


I spotted this Copperhead slithering across the road in front of my truck. Squish! One less venomous snake in the world to have to be wary of.


A farmer was harvesting soybeans in a field across from the house and he left a truck out there overnight. In the morning, just as the fog was lifting, you could barely see it in the mist.


You can barely see them, but a flock of Buzzards was floating on the air currents. I really enjoy this beautiful Fall weather. Keep prepping everyone!

October Is The Driest Month Of The Year?

8 Oct

October is usually the driest month of the year according to historical averages, but this week, the weatherman is calling for rain every day. I don’t want any rain for the next 6 weeks, harvest is in full swing.


There are cotton fields all over the area, wide open, waiting to be picked.


Fields like this will be damaged if they are rained on, so I hope the rains will hold off.


Our garden is about finished, but I noticed this cantaloupe growing between the trellis and the wall of my shop.


It should taste just fine, it just looks kinda’ funny.



You can sure tell Fall is here, people are putting out their Fall displays of pumpkins, gourds and mums.


There are even some mums outside of my bank. Come on in and give us your money. HA! I might as well put it under my mattress for all the interest I am drawing. Can you say “ZERO”?


Oreo says it is time to go, so I will be back soon. Keep prepping everyone!

Tuesday Tunes:Ted Nugent;Stranglehold

7 Oct

How about some Nuge this evening? Enjoy!