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Saturday, July 19, 2014

The Prepared Canadian Podcast - Episode 72 - Gardening, Comms Power, and Other Preps




 Every show begins with a little segment about what I (and others) have done in the past week to that I can actually fill a whole podcast with my projects and purchases.

 


I’ll give an overview of some of the gardening chores that had to be done, either because of mother nature wanting to reclaim the cleared garden space, or dealing with failed crops and replanting.  Some things couldn’t be saved while others simply needed a helping hand.  Either way, most of the plant rescues are a wait and see project as I have no idea if I caught the problems in time to save the harvest.

 


Speaking of harvest, the crops that are about to produce will have to be dealt with and stored.  This means making sure that I have enough supplies on hand to match last year, but also taking a few changes to mind, such as changing jar sizes for certain produce, preparing to replace the lids I am about to use, and getting the canner out, cleaned, tested,  and getting some replacement parts from Home Hardware.

 


Also, I spent some time and money over at Ebay, buying some rechargeable batteries for my handheld comms, as well as some USB powered chargers.  I will discuss how many I bought and why, as well as some other alternative power options for my ham radio.

 


Don’t worry, even though I have included the link to the Ebay store that I used, I will review both the seller and the products I bought once they arrive…I always try to talk about things that I have first hand experience about, or have gotten advice prom other preppers with first hand knowledge.

 



Also, I have some listener feedback to share with you regarding the alternative cooking episode from a few weeks ago that will clear up some questions about some gear that I had not used, but did mention.



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Saturday, July 5, 2014

The Prepared Canadian Podcast - Episode 71 - Weather Preparedness

 Here in Canada, we experience a wide range of dangerous weather related emergencies.  Some of these weather conditions will give us a bit of a heads up, such as the case with Hurricane Arthur.  Some will be a complete surprise with only a moment’s notice at best as with a tornado.  Others will have some  advance warning in the form of a “possibility” like with the flooding in Saskatchewan.

 

Of course, we canuks are used to winter events such as extreme cold, heavy snowfall, and ice storms, but summer time presents equally, if not more devastating weather.  Although possibly more common with our American friends, Canada gets it’s fair share of tornadoes, and can also be affected by hurricanes.  In fact, Canada will get about 60 tornadoes and be affected by an average of 2 to 3 hurricanes every year.  All this is not to mention regional  flooding caused by heavy rains or poor snow melting conditions.

 

Whether we have a warning or not, there are ways to prepare for such events.  On a day to day basis, we should be looking at keeping our supplies stocked and gear maintained.  When we have a bit of notice, we should kick into high gear and get everything that we can double checked and made as ready as it can be.

 

This week I’ll discuss regular maintenance of supplies and equipment, as well as last minute checking to make sure everything is as up to snuff as possible by topping off supplies, running and testing power equipment, and checking your homes and properties for repairs or just plain battening down the hatches.

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Saturday, June 21, 2014

The Prepared Canadian Podcast - Episode 70 - Alternative Cooking, What Works And What Doesn't

 It is indeed a tragedy in Moncton NB this week that has left wives without husbands, children without fathers, at the hand of Justin Bourque.  As we know, he went on a shooting rampage clearly aimed directly at law enforcement.  Such actions can never be justified nor tolerated in society.  There are, however lessons to be learned from these events.  The first thing that we have to keep in mind is that it was Justin Bourque who killed 3 RCMP officers and wounded 2 others, not the weapons he was carrying.

Over the last couple of years, I have had the chance to try a lot of different cooking options for off grid situations.  From home made solar ovens to open fire methods and everything in between, I found out a lot about what works and what doesn’t.  Actually, almost everything I have tried, does have a use, but there is no one appliance or trick that will work for everything…at least not well.

 

As preppers, we are exposed to a lot of information over the internet about the great ideas that people have had.  My advice is to try it before you have to rely on it.  In fact, that is exactly what this week’s show is all about…trials and errors.  This week, I will talk about different methods of alternative cooking that I have had personal experience with, and only those that I have tried and tested myself.

 

Some things may surprise you, such as just how much of a pain in the butt it can be to try cooking certain types of meals with certain types of stoves.  Of course, with the exception of one propane stove that I have used, every method of cooking had its place and use, but not one of them was a one size fits all, good for everything solution.

 

For instance, don’t try to use your wood heating stove for breakfast, but using a rocket  stove may be the best way to get your morning cup of joe.  In the end, you will need several different cooking methods, and you will have to try each and every one for yourself to find out what works well for you and for what.


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Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Setting Up Some Outdoor Cooking Space

One of the projects this week was to get some sort of outdoor cooking area set up.  Last year, I had made a makeshift fire place with some concrete blocks, but it was placed where we really wouldn't, and therefore didn't use it.  Now I have moved it closer to the house, where it's more convenient to get to.  All of this fireplace uses recycled materials...nothing bought.  The concrete blocks, fire grate, and kettle were all here when we bought the place.  The BBQ grill was taken from a discarded BBQ left by the road for garbage pick up.



Next, I wanted something a little more efficient, so I tried out a simple brick rocket stove.  Again, using recycled bricks I had picked up from an ad on Kijiji, and a spare patio stone I had left over from a path project.  Don't kid yourself with these stoves...they work well, but you need some experience to get the fuel size right and they need constant supervision to keep them going.  The fire grate here is some offcut 1/4" hardware cloth from the chicken coop.


Put it all together with a few chairs and it blends in just like every other outdoor gathering place.  The BBQ cover has a propane smoker and 20lb tank under it.






Of course, I wouldn't feel right if I didn't get at least some work done on the chicken coop.  Here it is as it stands now...almost done!


Just in case you're wondering about the little feathered friends...here is one checking out the CPN blog like a good prepper chicken!  I'm sure she will report back to her friends when she returns to the brooder.




Saturday, June 7, 2014

The Prepared Canadian Podcast - Episode 69 - A Look At The Moncton Shootings

 It is indeed a tragedy in Moncton NB this week that has left wives without husbands, children without fathers, at the hand of Justin Bourque.  As we know, he went on a shooting rampage clearly aimed directly at law enforcement.  Such actions can never be justified nor tolerated in society.  There are, however lessons to be learned from these events.  The first thing that we have to keep in mind is that it was Justin Bourque who killed 3 RCMP officers and wounded 2 others, not the weapons he was carrying.

Unfortunately, there was a lot of misinformation circulated the media, and even worse, was the ignorant comments being made through various social media venues such as Twitter and Face book.  This week I will talk about some of the misinformation broadcast over the television networks by reporters who for whatever reason, chose to report false information about the events.  Also, I will explain why we need to question even the so called experts that the media presents to us and how the media chooses such experts. 

In addition, I will talk about the problems associated with using social media for information during a crisis.  Of course, not to be left out of the equation is the inevitable arguments that the anti gun lobby will, and already has, been using and why these arguments simply don’t hold water.

Of course, I will not and simply cannot ever condone actions such as these.  Should we stand up for our rights as law abiding citizens?  Of course we should, but we also have to keep in mind that we cannot break laws and take lives to make our point.  People who commit such crimes should be punished to the fullest extent of the law, and perhaps we should even take a look at punishing these offenders even more severely, but neither should we take aim at restricting the rights of those that have not and likely never will do anything wrong.


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Wednesday, June 4, 2014

The Chickens - 1 Week Later


Well, our chicks have been with us for a week now, making them just over 3 weeks old. Already, we are seeing a difference.  The wing feathers are not just out, but taking on their adult colors.

They are also getting more flighty...lifting the lid off of the brooder to change the water, food and litter results in them flapping around and actually getting about 4 or 5 inches up in the air.  Just not quite enough to get up and over the edge yet.

I have also gotten some work done on the coop, which will sit right outside the back door.



The window is being re purposed, and is mounted backwards to allow for working the locks from the outside...reduce, reuse, recycle, right?


There is just the roof and wire to put on now...but we have a few days of stormy weather coming, so that will likely wait for the weekend.  I'm not in a great rush as the chicks are still several weeks away from going outdoors, but I want to get it done as soon as possible, just to be able to scratch it off the list.



Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Summer Of Survival Starts Today!


Hey everyone,

Real quick…

Like I told you before, Summer of Survival is 24 top-level survival experts providing over 36 hours of training at no charge. But the only way you can get free access to everything if you haven’t signed up already is to go over and sign up right now.

All you need is your first name and email. Heck, make one up if you want. Just don’t miss this free training or you’ll kick yourself later.

Here’s the link again:

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See you at Summer of Survival!

P.S. If you already signed up and got a confirmation email then you’re all set. Just wanted to make sure you didn’t miss a thing! If not, signing up takes just 10 seconds. So get on it now.

  >>Get free access to Summer of Survival<<


In case you missed it, don't forget to check out my podcast interview with Cindy Thompson and the Summer Of Survival lead presenter, Survival Jane also available over at Prepper Broadcasting.