The world has gone crazy and that includes Wyoming. Spread our population and you’d have 6 people per square mile. Now that is social distancing. But first they had to clean out Walmart and the grocery stores. As for me, I’m loving the shelter in place idea. If I did not have grandkids living here half of the week, I’d do it as a lifestyle. Yes, I am a major introvert. This opportunity has allowed me to focus on what really matters.
I see many storm clouds of various kinds brewing on the horizon. A mouse plague of biblical proportions is in Germany and elsewhere. America sat with last years crops in the fields due to weather. If you feed them, they will come came to mind. This spring an increase in mice is being seen in the east. Probably elsewhere too. Is this a beginning? During a solar minimum, the lack of UV rays increases the number of offspring who live. Floods and wet weather last year and into this spring increases the chances of mold and virus’s on crops. Couple that with locust that are expected in the east and I can’t help but wonder what we are in for? We had grasshoppers in large numbers north of us. Will they come here? Will we have an increased mouse population? Duke is a fierce hunter but he goes on ‘walk abouts’ frequently. Reginald is old, sixteen, and semi-retired. Kirk and I were thinking we might need a new barn cat.
As for viruses, UV rays are a great sanitizer and therefor the lack of it increases the rate of germs and viruses. Couple the fact of all this and the governments throwing threats in all directions and I think we are in for a really bumpy ride.
So what am I doing? I’m praying, “Lord what do you want me to do right now to prepare?” Then I do it again. The Lord alone knows what will befall each and every one of us. Troubles have been knocking at our door for some time draining our resources and we’ve been caught up in a lifestyle we never wanted. We’ve worked at becoming more independent but not hard enough for a world turned upside down. “We’re going to have to get western!” and “Git….r done!” Which simply means think outside the box and rig something up.
In Doctrine and Covenants Section 88, it instructs us to organize and prepare every needful thing. We certainly weren’t organized and we felt impressed in December that this would be critical. De-cluttering and organizing is smoothing the runners. But there are areas we weren’t making headway fast enough and the Lord took us in hand. If you don’t do it voluntarily then he will compel you. We now have 2 working chest freezers not 3 like we knew we should have had. Wow, was that an intense work out week cooking and canning. Our pantry and freezers are clean and we know what food we have.
Recently, he told me to redo my recipes. The ones I’d just gone over not that long before. As I pondered the why, in light of recent events, I realized:
- My recipes are too dependent on store goods and aren’t focused on what I can produce myself even if it is in small quantities.
- Eating in the ‘season there in’ is ignored. After all the store has most items year round.
- My recipes are too much about wants and not needs.
- The focus is not on nutrition.
Yes, not nearly as bad as the average diet but not good enough to sustain us in troubled times. So my mind is wondering off into another arena.
- I’m thinking about what basic foods will be the foundation of our diet in troubled times and how that will change during the seasons.
- I’m thinking about what crops are Ole Reliables. Foods that grow well, are dependable, and are in breakfast, lunch, and supper menus like potatoes and spinach. Bell peppers would fit part of that bill but not all since they are delicate and harder to grow here. I use a lot of them and that has to change.
- Nutrition has to rank high.
- Crops that will store for long periods of time and don’t require a lot of energy to preserve will take priority.
With more to do in the same amount of hours in a day,
every effort has to count.
As I scour review each recipe, I am thinking can I make, grow, or raise the ingredients? Can I substitute for ones I do? What can I obtain in our area that I can not do so myself. Are there things we should eat less of or more of? Definitely more fruits and vegetables and less bread. As for food to obtain, in our area, grains came to mind. I can raise a little but not nearly enough for our needs.
We have dairy goats which means milk. So I’m wondering what cultures I need? Yogurt with a little milk can be substituted for buttermilk. We use sour cream a lot and cream cheese would be nice so I need to learn to make them. But what else? I’ve made cottage cheese, feta, and mozzarella a few times but are they the very basics I need? Time will be limited. Butter is essential but my butter making skills are lousy with goat cream. Cows cream is easy. I’ve got some serious work to do in this area.
I grow most of our spices but I need to learn to make and grow the ingredients for the basic condiments we use. There are three, mustard, ketchup, and mayonnaise.
I am reviving up my sour dough right now as it is self-sustaining and I’m collecting more recipes to try using it.
What are your bare bones basics? I realize this is a pretty luxurious list. For you it might be very, very basic and that is fine. The point is survival through these tough times and that can’t be outsourced.We as individuals are one of many so if you need are going to need to outsource create close connections. We have received limited goods at times when others did not because we are long time return customers, dependable, and pay cash.
As things tighten, countries and states will and are closing borders. Threats are being made to end trade. It has happened, it will happen again at some point. Instead of reacting, and trying to adapt, let’s create resiliency. Resiliency is back up plans and better yet backup plans for our backup plans. Let’s take inventory and think of what is the bare basics for each of us and prepare.