Common Sense Home Good News Letter 1/7/24

There was an echo now.

It was a small change, but noticeable. With the new workshop and not much vegetation in the winter, sounds bounced around the yard. The return of snow softened the sound, like kids whispering under a blanket fort, but it was still a bit odd.

A conversation came up this week in our ​preparedness Telegram group​, asking, “What are you preparing for?”

Sure, the zombies and cataclysms get all the movie headlines, but thankfully the odds are fairly low for widespread truly catastrophic events.

What’s far more likely is continued supply chain disruptions, power outages, job changes, illness, and other “​everyday emergencies​“. We live in a messy world, and there are a lot of changes brewing, so anything we can do to give ourselves some breathing room when things inevitably don’t go as expected is a blessing.

I’ve said this many times, but it bears repeating – our power grid is aging. Current policies incentivize unreliable solar and wind, and make it difficult to bring reliable baseline power like nuclear and coal online. They also push electrifying everything, which creates more strain on an already overloaded system. I don’t see this improving any time soon. ​Backup power​ for critical systems and/or ways to get things done without power are reasonable investments.

If you know your area is prone to certain weather issues, or earthquakes, planning for those issues makes sense.

Having multiple income streams acts as a buffer for job loss. Those side hustle jobs may help keep you debt free, or help pay down debt, too. Being mindful of spending is never a bad thing. A friend of mine regularly talks about how her co-workers are always complaining about being broke, yet they get drive through coffee and meal delivery on a regular basis. Home cooking takes time, but it can save a LOT of money. (My friend Wardee, has ​a great 30 minute skillet meal worksheet and video series​ that can help with this.)

We always have a garden. Even when the weather isn’t completely cooperative, we appreciate the fresh fruit and vegetables, and the storage crops. As the years go on, we try new preserving recipes, and new storage varieties. (And share our favorites with you!) It’s amazing to me that preparing food the right way can actually increase the nutrients and/or make the nutrients more bioavailable. (We’ll be talking about this more in the ​Food is Health membership​.)

The sun is out for a bit, so I’m going to take advantage of a bit of solar power and water heating to get some laundry done.

All our best to you and yours,

Laurie (and August IV, August V, and Duncan)

This week’s featured articles…

There’s a new entry in the Home Apothecary series. This lovely flower grows wild in many areas, but can also be grown in the home garden. ​Learn how to forage, grow, and use St. John’s wort.​

The apples we have in cool storage from our home orchard are starting to soften, so we’re doing some more apple processing. (Note – you may be able to find good deals at orchards that need to clear their cold storage, too.)

​This apple butter recipe​ has a yummy blend of spices that smell so good while it’s cooking and taste even better when it’s ready. You can use the crock pot or stove top, or speed things up with the Instant pot.

One of the best investments we’ve made in our homestead is a root cellar. We included ours during construction, but it’s possible to retrofit one into an existing home. Here’s ​what you need to know about build a root cellar and using it correctly​.

Glimpses of the homestead on Instagram – ​an array of egg sizes​ and ​the recent fluffy snow covering​. (Note – you do not need an Instagram account to see individual photos or videos.)

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