Enemies Foreign and Domestic

I’ve previously posted about Matt Bracken’s EFAD trilogy, of which I’m a fan.  Well, here is your chance to download a copy for free.  On March 1, Bracken is reducing the price on the Kindle version of the first book to FREE!  The “goal is to make the spike in the number of free Kindle downloads for Enemies Foreign And Domestic so dramatic, that the national media will notice the passionate interest in this “dangerous and seditious” novel among the bitter clingers.”  You may recall the opening scenes of EFAD which seemed so unlikely.  Compare that to “Operation Fast and Furious”.  It’s an interesting correlation.

Anyway, details here, direct from the horse’s mouth.  Downloads begin on March 1.

Posted in General Discussion, Linky Love | 1 Comment

Mainstay Rations

On my last Amazon purchase, I threw a Mainstay Survival Ration bar in the cart.  I’ve wanted to try them for a while.  I’ve been considering grabbing a few to throw in the GHB in the car.

The bar has the consistency of a dense cookie, not too hard, barely oily, and with a slight lemony flavor.  I had no hesitation at all about eating it.  It comes pre-cut into 2-inch cubes, each a nominal 400 calories.  The individual cubes are not wrapped inside the vacuum-packed mylar.  They are available in 1200, 2400, and 3600 calorie packs.

For their designed purpose they seem perfect.  I think they will hold up quite well banging around in the car, even with the temperature extremes they will experience.  Recommended!

Posted in General Discussion | 2 Comments

Well, that was weird.

Just felt my first earthquake.  I’m a long way from central Virginia.

Posted in World Events | Comments Off on Well, that was weird.

Goodbye to a friend

We made the sad decision earlier this week to take Maggie for the final vet visit.  She would have been 12 years old next month – we had her from about 10 weeks old.  But, her body had worn out: her legs wouldn’t support her for long, her appetite was gone, and the pain medications were no longer helping.  Nicest dog you’ve ever met, if I say so myself.  She’ll be missed.

Posted in Around the Homestead | 2 Comments

Rattlecan Camo, Part 2

Well as usual life got in the way of pleasure…  Anyway, I finally got around to trying out the MultiCam paint job on a rifle.  Excuse the poor cell phone picture, I was being lazy.  I think the rifle looks better than this picture makes it out to be, although I do wonder if it’s too bright.  The magazine is one of those I showed before, which seemed to match so well…

At any rate, I’m pretty happy with the outcome.  Now if I could just find some time to shoot the damn thing…

Posted in Firearms, Gear & Equipment | Comments Off on Rattlecan Camo, Part 2

Rattlecan Camo

Recently I’ve been poking around the Lightfighter Forums.  One post that caught my eye was this one on painting your rifle.  I’ve also been going through a recent gear whore phase.  As we all know, any self-respecting gear whore must love MultiCam.  Add these pieces together, and it becomes a bloggable project. 

Based on that post, I decided that I was going to paint one of my rifles.  First things first, I ordered some spray paint from Brownell’s – specifically the Aervoe recommended by Pat Rogers.  Instead of using the camo net as suggested, I made a vaguely MultiCam looking template from a manilla file folder.  This was just shapes drawn free-hand, and cut out with an exacto knife.  Nobody will mistake me for an artist.  This was by far the most time consuming part of this project.




Now, rifles are kind of expensive, and I’m not crazy about the idea of ruining one with my first attempt at this, so I decided to try this on a couple of magazines first.  I set them out in the sun for a little while, then hit them with a base coat of “Sand” colored paint.  Let that dry for a few minutes, than blasted them with a few broad sweeping strokes of “Earth Brown”.  That gave us the look to the left.






So far, so good.  Few more minutes of drying, then a coat of “Marine Green” through the template.






Looking good!  Little bit of drying, and next up comes “Dark Green”.









Nice!  Dry, then apply the Olive Drab:









Fantastic! Let that dry for about an hour in the sun, and we’re done.  Wonder how it compares to MultiCam?  Me too, let’s take a look:Pretty passable if you ask me.  I think that’s enough proof of concept that I’m going to give it a shot with a rifle.  Maybe next week – stay tuned!

Posted in Firearms, Gear & Equipment, Tutorials | Comments Off on Rattlecan Camo

Half a million calories

I’ve been working on increasing my long-term storage food recently.  In reading around ARFcom’s Survival Forum, I came across a link for Emergency EssentialsFood Storage Analyzer.

It is an absolutely great tool for understanding how long the food you have will last you.  You provide ages and genders for the people you are storing for, from which it calculates your total daily caloric requirements.  It’s pre-populated with many common long term storage foods – Freeze Dried, Mountain House, rice, etc – as well as with everything from Emergency Essentials catalog.  You provide your inventory of each of these items (plus anything else you want to add), and it calculates total calories stored, and how long it will last.  Additionally, it allows you to order from EE (good marketing!), and shows the effect of the purchase in your storage plan.

I did a very quick, off the top of my head estimate of what I have stored while experimenting with the tool.  It returned half a million calories, which it estimates will last my family for 3 months.  I plan to properly update my inventory in the next couple of weeks, and will see what the tool thinks of that.

Overall, I’m impressed.  Added bonus, it’s free to use!

Edit: More thorough inventory of just my long-term storage items puts me closer to 620,000 calories / 115 days!

Posted in In the Kitchen | Comments Off on Half a million calories

New Orchard

Winter seems to be coming to an end, despite an April Fools’ Day snowfall.  I spent the past weekend spreading mulch across the landscaping.  I also got my “orchard” started – 3 young apple trees.  I’ve planted Macoun, Empire, and Early Geneva.  It will be a learning experience for me, and a few years before I know if there will be a payoff.  None the less, I’m excited.

Posted in In the Garden | Comments Off on New Orchard

The final measurement

Once the white stuff stopped falling, I measured 17.5 inches in my driveway.  Not even close to the “forecasted” 4-8″.  Useless.

Posted in Around the Homestead | Comments Off on The final measurement

Honeyville Grains

Honeyville Grains is a great company for freeze dried storage-type foods.  I keep some of their FD fruits, vegetable, and eggs around.  The combination cases are great for variety; Full & half cases, as well as individual cans are available for stocking up.  I can also say from first hand experience that their customer service is excellent.  I had a case go missing in transit, and it was immediately replaced.  Their flat shipping rate ($4.49 on any order!) and regularly e-mailed discount codes makes placing an order less painful.

The impetus for this post, however, is the mug of their Gourmet Hot Cocoa sitting on the desk in front of me. Absolutely a wonderful treat for a snowy day.  Mix with milk instead of water and it’s rich, creamy, and borderline sinful.  It is available in 10 different flavors,  and as a 12 can variety case.  I can heartily recommend the mint, orange and raspberry flavors.  I also endorse the Mexican variety now sitting in front of me, which may have become my new favorite.

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