Life on a little urban homestead in the making, with ideas for self-sufficiency, Permaculture, DIYing, organic gardening, food preservation, Chicken keeping, cookery, crafts, thrifting and more...

Sep 10, 2022

September National Preparedness Month/Is This Redundant? Autumn's Almost Here


September National Preparedness Month/Is This Redundant?
On some level I almost don't feel like even posting this. But since it is National Preparedness Month I thought I'd add just a good few reminders and links... Be Informed Emergency Preparedness Checklist  You can check out my previous posts on this topic under the "topics" tab on the right side. Don't forget to prep for your pets!!! Pets

If you've been watching the national and international news you know that there have been major catastrophic crop failures, livestock failures, floods, fires, fuel shut offs, war, it's the perfect storm. Everyone should be really preparing for food shortages, exorbitant fuel charges and/or shortages. This news is from this week, time to stock up and maybe buy a turkey for the holidays-

 I recently came into a small amount of money and instead of putting it into my retirement account I cashed it out to buy hard goods. I bought about 6 months worth of chicken feed (now $25 a bag up from $12.99 a while back) to get us all the way through the winter and more pine shavings for the coop. Ditto for the cat food. I also bought more things to stash like OTC meds.  I saw a really great deal for a Food Saver vacuum system at Costco for only $75! It came with a starter kit of bags, a really great deal! My old pressure bag system was on its way out, not a surprise since it was pretty cheap. It's good to invest in those kind of food preservation items. I have had ZERO freezer burn with those bags!!! I felt it was a better $ investment than sitting gathering little to no interest for a while. In some ways I feel like cashing it all out and doing something different but I am hopeful that I will still be able to retire someday. If you've seen anything lately about people's thermostats getting locked up by the utilities- I think this is a preview of things to come. I know our local power company asked us to voluntarily sign up to have our power lowered during the hottest part of the summer days. In return they would give us a little bit of money at the end of the summer. We passed. We try to be conscious of our energy and water use. We do a lot of mulching, planting trees on our lot, but we still use/need the AC.  Having said that fuel charges are looking really gruesome in Europe. I think this is also a preview of things to come in the states. I bought some flannel sheets to stash and we have tons of bedding, kerosene and propane heaters. Some people still think that nothing will change, they may have something called normalcy bias. Everything will be fine because it always has been

From Wiki- Normalcy bias, or normality bias, is a cognitive bias which leads people to disbelieve or minimize threat warnings. Consequently, individuals underestimate the likelihood of a disaster, when it might affect them, and its potential adverse effects. The normalcy bias causes many people to not adequately prepare for natural disasters, market crashes, and calamities caused by human error. About 70% of people reportedly display normalcy bias during a disaster. The normalcy bias can manifest in response to warnings about disasters and actual catastrophes. Such disasters include market crashes, motor vehicle accidents, natural disasters like a tsunami, and war. Normalcy bias has also been called analysis paralysis, the ostrich effect, and by first responders, the negative panic. The opposite of normalcy bias is overreaction, or worst-case scenario bias, in which small deviations from normality are dealt with as signals of an impending catastrophe.

A classic example was Ukraine. People were warned to leave, Russia was surrounding the country for months and months, and most stayed. They really never thought Russia would invade, despite the obvious signs. The very wealthy never worry either. I heard this quote two days ago and it really stuck with me-

People of privilege will always risk their complete destruction rather than surrender any material part of their advantage. Intellectual myopia, often called stupidity, is no doubt a reason. But the privileged also feel that their privileges, however egregious they may seem to others, are a solemn, basic, God-given right- John Kenneth Galbraith, Canadian Economist.

Autumn's Almost Here-
We have been under a Heat Dome like a lot of the West the last few months, with many many weeks and weeks of over 100° weather. It's been very smoky here the last week with multiple fires in Eastern Oregon and here in Idaho. We definitely had a much smaller crop of tomatoes, but green ones are still on the vine. Tomatoes won't set fruit when it's over 80 or 85°. I don't have enough to can this year but will freeze some. I already made some wonderful salsa. Not many apples at all, luckily I canned a lot and froze some last year! Lots of pears on the tree, probably ready to can next weekend. We hit our 43° morning yesterday! Finally getting down into the 80s this week and the 70s late next week. May be some rain, which we desperately need. We're fortunate we had plenty of water for crops and our animals, some are not so lucky. We'll be stashing some mulch and other gardening needs for next year. Those things are easy to store. I'm packing up the summer decor and almost ready to put out pumpkins! 
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