I'm still stuffed form the seafood extravaganza of Saturday night. Red Lobster has gone all out to present America with all the Shrimp and Lobster they can handle. Quite a change in the menu from when I ate there many years ago. I didn't pay for it so I have no guilt to deal with. And the food was good.
The Handmaiden is still drying everything she can get her hands on. She is doing a marvelous job. I just checked her stash and it is growing by leaps and bounds. We have mostly shot our money with this last food buy and our storage effort will slow down a bit due to those good old money shortage things most of use run into. But that food dryer keeps us in the game. She started some grapes the other day and they are slower than molasses on a cold morning. We both read the instructions for grapes and it never mentioned peeling them so we haven't. But they sure are slow. ON the drying of food from your garden I had another question from Publius about putting away dried beans. You DO freeze them for three days. That will not hurt their ability to grow more beans. Most plants in most places have seed that will survive freezing. It is a natural thing for seed to freeze over the Winter, if the critters don't eat them. You freeze them to kill off any vermin that might be lodged in their interior. Got that little tip from Charli Gribbile of Alabama. She knows how it is done. Can't beat having friends like that! My bean seed this year was all from frozen seed from last year. It's down in the garden growing like gangbusters. And it was not all bug-eaten like it would have been without Charli's little tip.
I am looking for cheap skillets and Dutch Ovens right now. Cast iron is the coming thing on my new cook stove. It won't hurt my stove top one little bit because the stove top is cast iron also. I had a good friend tell me he could get me all the cast iron cookware I wanted at cheap prices at the yard sales he goes to every weekend. So far he has drawn a blank. So it looks like China Mart is going to get a visit. I want another skillet and a Dutch oven and I want a hand operated Pepper Mill. We have been grinding our Cayenne with an electric coffee mill which does an excellent job but requires that 120 volt A.C. current to work. The day may come when A.C. is not available. So we get the hand mill for the dried pepper. I will see if I can talk the Handmaiden into going to China Mart today and buying the stuff. I hate to go to town. It seems like you drive the miles to town and then you walk miles down aisles to find what you want. She will know where the stuff is a lot better than me. Like I said, I hate going to town. Town is nothing more than a warehouse to me. You go there and find the stuff you want, pay for it and get your ass back home with the loot before they know it will help preppers!. Don't want to give these scumbags a clue to life or they might live through the die-off. And that means they could come wandering down the road, in a mob, to rob us after the crash. Can't be aiding and abetting THAT effort. So the survival beat goes on. The Handmaiden has already gone to town to get the loot. The dehydrator is humming away in the other room, making goodies for us to eat in the future. We have the water and we are making the food. What could be sweeter?
My neighbor just put in a new sewer line that joins the rest of us. The old system that used to run the building on the other end has given up the ghost. So he put in a sewer line above ground. He says the sewer will not freeze in the Winter. He put up a series of 2 X 12's to act like down-hill barriers just below the pipe and brought some very rich dirt to cover the pipe. Actually he brought 50 bucket loads of dirt in to cover the pipe. The big bucket on the end of the backhoe. So now we have this strip of very rich dirt going around the yard and it will be made to grow things. They just can't be trees. A tree's root system would tear the pipe up. I am having the Handmaiden look for any onion starts while she is in town. I'll have me a 150 foot row of onions if things work out! I would imagine the Handmaiden will want to plant herbs in the strip of dirt next year. I can see that happening. We can have our very own pharmacy growing right off our porch. Purslane and other goodies that will really help you. My neighbor planted a Purple Coneflower on his end already. One ain't enough but it's a start. If I remember my observations pretty well you have to let Coneflower grow more than one year to develop a good strong root. Echinacea is the product of the purple coneflower. Good stuff. And just think, even if I plant beans in the strip next year I can guard them from the shade of my porch. You talk about the lap of luxury!
The handmaiden is back from town with a new skillet, a new Dutch Oven, and a new Pepper Mill. She picked up a huge old time can with a lid like they used to ship cookies and potato ship is. $2.50 at Goodwill. She also got us 2 one gallon glass jars with metal screw-on lids. She bought those brand new. Pretty nice for keeping herbs I bet! Then she had to go take her brother-in-law to the hospital because he thinks he threw his hip out of place. I wait at home to hear the news of this latest test of strength for the household. I hope he is okay. It's all part of staying alive.