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About kappydell

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    Family Member
  • Birthday 01/31/1954

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    just moved to georgia from wisconsin
  • Interests
    self reliance; lo-tech living; cooking, crafts, anything to do with food!!, camping, livestock, garden & orchard, hunting, fishing, trapping, camping, etc.

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  1. kappydell


    My dehydrator is working at full capacity today. Walmart has a sale on asparagus.....price reduced from $2.98 a pound to $1.00 a pound. I did a double take and bought 5 pounds. Even on my tight budget it was WORTH IT!!!! I'm drying a lot of it - that cream of asparagus soup, and asparagus-rice combo will taste so good at a future date. I got the veggies that were piling up all dehydrated too - zucchini, cucumber slices, green pepper dices, peppermint leaves, and some yellow banana peppers. No need to dehydrate tomatoes....lots of folks volunteer to take any extras I happen to have. Now I need more jars (it's always something). Mary's VA disability claim is being processed faster than usual - her claims officer told her it would go faster than usual because she had done and had records of all the medical tests and treatments to back up her claims. It looks more and more like it will be 100% but I ain't counting any chickens until they are hatched....and laying eggs! We had a couple of (relatively) cooler days (80s) which were very nice, now it is heating up again. New planting of beans are up. Yay! summer!
  2. kappydell


    Today I feel every one of my (too many) years. Had to go to PT anyway. Working around my back is hard enough, but now my right knee and old-rotator cuff injury shoulder are both twinging up a storm. In PT I tried my hardest, so I know I did a good workout, but I felt like a quitter telling the therapist that I was not going to do the crab walk with my ankles hooked together with a stretchy band, because of that knee. I did not want to aggravate it. Got a few things done around the house though - some picking up, another load of dehydrated cucumbers, dehydrated some peppers too. Now all I have left to do is some okra pods and some celery. Doing more dehydrating this year, mostly because the pressure canner is still packed away and hard to get too. Mary loves creamed veggies which is swell, since dehydrated veggies, once rehydrated, have an affinity for that cream sauce. The green beans we re-planted are up already. I am poring over the university extension planting charts for autumn planting times, deciding what else to put in when the sweet potatoes come up. If I can find a way to shade things, I'd like to go with some cool weather crops that will hang on through most of the winter. BUT the trick will be to keep them from bolting since the heat still stays in the 90s most days. The humidity makes me think a mulch would be a disease vector that I don't need. We will think of something; we are happy so far with our first 'southern' garden, just need more tweaking on cultivars and planting times. Jack the hyper-pup is finally starting to slow down and not be so wild. Mary is starting to like him more and more (I was always smitten) so it appears he will be able to stay with us. He has turned into a gorgeous young dog, and as his brains kick in and his personality mellows he will be an asset to us. For his bad days we picked up some of the nutri-vet calming herbal treats when we were in Alabama last month. He loves the taste (liver flavor) and mellows within 10 min of eating one. We save those for his really bad days, don't want to over-do and make him dependant. If he keeps improving we will be able to transfer those to the doggie first aid kit for the pups that are afraid of thunderstorms. They don't sedate the dogs so they sleep, just mellow them out a bit. When the internet came back up (it goes down here almost daily, from noon-ish until about 5 PM. Don't know why, nobody from our computer satellite company has explained it yet so we work around it.) I researched the last part of my 'forage calendar' info - hunting/trapping/fishing seasons, bag limits, and licensing costs. Georgia is going to be kind to us ladies - they have reduced sportsman licenses for both seniors, and disabled folks both of which categories we fall under. So for $18 for three years, we will get a combined fishing and hunting license which covers small game, fowl, deer, turkey, bear, feral hogs, plus fishing for freshwater fish. We can get a trapping license for our own land for free, which suits our intended purpose - varmint control. I might experiment with cleaning & tanning pelts, but not for sale - fur prices are crappy even up north where the fur is superior due to the colder weather. If we decide to expand (nuisance animal trapping is one possibility) we can always pay the $30 per year for trapping on other folks' land. So like I said - Georgia is being nice to us ladies. We can even apply by mail! So I copied those forms for my 'forage file' for payday, when I will send them in. Thinking also of earmarking some of my next tax return for a salt-water fishing charter trip just for fun. No license required for a charter - the charter has a special commercial license covering their customers, plus they supply the tackle. It would be fun to figure out how to clean a shark and imagine the brag-factor of having shark steaks (or other salt water fish) for the grill! (Fresh shark $9.59/lb).
  3. kappydell


    Today was a lost day - had to go to PT ( and they always leave me sore the next day). Then to my internist to see what the cat scan of my spine shows. Of course, I'm a mess....crooked in several directions (dextro-rotary curvature), bony fusions, misalignments of up to 8mm (large, according to the doc), severe canal narrowing in 5 lumbar vertebrae, bad degenerative disc disease, etc, etc. She is sending me to a neurosurgeon, not so much for surgery, but to plan out a treatment plan that won't make things worse. I have always told people I'm crooked, but it always looks worse in medical-ese. On the plus side, she was pleased I lost 5 pounds this last month, from activity increases and eating more fresh veggies from the garden. I generally lose a couple pounds because those fresh veggies are soooooooo good. I took her an assortment of tomatoes, peppers (green & yellow banana), cucumbers and okra. Like me, she never met a veggie she didn't like. I think I'll take her some purslane...a good omega 3 source, rare in a plant, and tasty. Since she likes okra, she will like it, the texture is okra like. I'm keeping some seeds from this purslane, I think, just in case they don't carry it next year. This year it was offered as a 'new' (ROFL) flowering plant. The only difference between it and the weed I'm used to, is the flowers are bigger, and orange instead of yellow. I always have to bite my tongue to keep from making wise cracks when I see plants I recognize as weeds being sold as newly discovered garden plants. The New England Aster cracked me up, but the purslane takes the cake. Whats next??? Decorative giant ragweed??? Egad!! Mary was grousing today again about the house being a mess. Well, it is, but she also shares the blame, having a habit of not putting things away when she is done with them. Our breakfast island is awash in tools, car keys, hats, some dog treats, and other items that do not really have a designated 'place'. It's kinda like a giant junk drawer, in plain sight. (sigh) I don't mind the clutter but it bugs the heck out of her, so tomorrow will be cleaning day. She promises to concentrate on putting stuff back when she is done with it. (That is the worst bad habit she has, so I am blessed!) She wanted ham sandwiches again for dinner, saying it would take too long to cook up the chicken I had planned, but when I made 'Spanish rice' for our 'elder dog' who eats people food, she decided to eat some of that too. No problem, I always make a huge batch, as it freezes well. That way, when we eat pizza or eat out, we can feed Mr. Max (the dog) some micro-heated chow from the freezer stash. It's all good....and I am particularly fond of Spanish rice as I can add all sorts of 'goodies' to my portion...cottage cheese for extra protein, brewers yeast for B vitamins, and of course I always add 1/4 c oatmeal to any loose-hamburger dish I make for extra whole grain fiber. It hides in there well, and, well, keeps things moving right along. I'll cook that chicken tomorrow, and make some oven-fried okra to go with it for me, and creamed fresh green beans for her. I love-love-love garden season!!! The sweet potato mounds are growing, so it looks like we will get a nice harvest of those. Mary planted bush beans in the empty areas of the garden, and we will put in more onions tomorrow for autumn & winter harvest. The zucchini are getting vine borers, but we have all the grated zucchini we need for zucchini bread in the freezer, so that is not a catastrophic thing. We will remove the three plants, and plant with some more assorted greens. The kale is hanging in there, so are the brussels sprouts (as long as we keep them watered) and the pole beans are kicking out steadily More notes for the garden file.....start late cabbage & kale in August and keep them in the shade in the afternoon!
  4. kappydell

    Dad went to the hospital

    From me, too. It is a shock to be on the clock, so to speak. You are never really completely "ready". Even if you know it is coming. Treasure the time you have left - call him often.
  5. kappydell

    What are you canning today? Part 8

    Kyle's mom, boiled peanuts are like the canned ones at Wal-mart. They are still in the shell, and inside they are cooked, kinda like cooked dry beans. Not the taste one would expect (like peanut butter) but tasty nonetheless. I prefer the plain (they are salted), but many folks swear by the Cajun flavored around here. I like to try them whenever I see a stand. They serve them up in a huge Styrofoam cup, still warm. I usually go overboard and eat them all at once! The canned ones are a good place to try them although the food snobs might say they are inferior, I think they are just fine. I have a couple cans in my pantry.
  6. kappydell

    Deal on Cheese

    $1 a pound savings is enough to warrant looking into, and that's a fact. Been meaning to try dehydrating some....
  7. kappydell

    Raising Chicks and Chicken Feed

    Very nice, Cowgirl. A few years back I asked my grandma about feeding chickens, and she said she loved raising them, because they would eat ANYTHING, being ommivorous. I was worried about being able to afford all the expert recommended grains, mixes and supplements, and she relieved me of that fear quickly. She raised chickens and provided eggs for a restaurant and a grocery store during the Great Depression, and said they were excellent money-makers. (She is also the one that taught me how to butcher chickens.) To this day, I always tell people if I ever teach homesteading classes the price of admission will be one live chicken...
  8. kappydell


    It was halfway decent today, relatively cool in the 80s. Funny how things change, back in Wis we would have been saying how hot it was getting at 80 degrees, now we are happy with it being a 'cool' 80 degrees. LOL! The garden is enjoying the break, cooler weather, overnight slow rains (soaking in, not running off) and daytime sunshine. We picked more zucchini, cucumbers, tomatoes today, and the okra is coming on strong now. Time to make some oven fried okra (I found some intriguing looking recipes) even though Mary won't eat it. I think I will go with the panko breading and Italian spices, then any leftovers can go on a salad later, without Cajun spices 'fighting' with the salad dressing flavors. Tomorrow I plan to make another 'mowing' of my pot of peppermint to dehydrate, in between my PT and doc visits. I am well pleased with the herbs I planted in pots. Originally I did it because the garden space was all planted up, but the pots are keeping the invasive herbs I like best controlled nicely, and look quite attractive sitting in a row in front of the house. I did plant a couple extra pots yesterday - they originally had ranunculus flowers, but those bloomed then died rather quickly, being springtime flowers, so we dug up the bulbs (we will try replanting for early spring next year...say around March...). I put feverfew in one pot, and pennyroyal in the other. Both will make attractive pots, along with being useful medicinals. I'm thinking that if/when those nice pots go on sale I will buy more for a potted herb garden. We can easily transport those to the shelter of the carport during the 'cold' winter months. (I just cant think of winter down here as cold just yet...just autumnal, and perfect outdoor working weather.) I have some Irish Spring soap to be distributed among my outdoor plantings, too.....something is nibbling my poor raspberry bush 'twigs'. They are just sitting there, I don't think they liked where we planted them - too much afternoon sun I suspect. Next spring I'll put some in another area and see how they fare along with a couple elderberry bushes. The crape myrtles are gorgeous, and huge, arching over the bird bath, so the birds can sit up and preen after bathing. We put a feeder there, too, so it a mini-sanctuary for the seed-eating birds. Very peaceful.
  9. kappydell


    Wow. I see we are not the only ones seeing deer walking around. It must be the time of year the new babies start learning how to browse. No sign of the bear that was supposed to be raiding people's garbage - I guess he went t'other way. With the 4th, fireworks are going crazy here. A couple years back (we are told) Georgia rescinded its fireworks restrictions. Now anybody can get them and use them. As long as the neighbors don't start the place on fire, I don't care. We went to our friends' lake dock to watch their local fireworks show. The people across the lake from them have $$ to spend on putting on a show and it was very good. Bet it cost thousands! People get in their boats & putt around the lake, watching all the various shows, and there were quite a few at this one. So we all cheered, hooted & hollered and gave accolades to the shooters. Of course, there were the usual incidents; this time a fellow put a plywood deck on his boat, set up the fireworks shooting tubes (kinda like mortars) and did not know to slant them so they shot the fireworks up and AWAY from the boat. Yup, you guessed it. They went up, then straight down, back into his boat, blowing up the remaining fireworks all at once, his boat, and blew him and his buddy into the water. And all their beer and dope. Both are in the hospital. Some folks gotta learn the hard way, I guess, but OWWWWW. Today I processed veggies. We are getting inundated with cucumbers and tomatoes, pole beans and okra, and zucchini, which Mary lets grow to at least a foot long before she picks it. So I grated zucchini for zucchini bread, then peeled & diced (1/4 inch dice) another zucchini and a couple gallons of cucumbers to dehydrate. Made a 'fire and ice' salad for the fridge (cucumbers, onions & tomatoes). As long as I had the blender out grating zucchini, I also did up all the dried bread I had sitting around, making crumbs. We tried working outside, but the heat index was 110 so we did not stay out long. I listened to the local news while I worked; the usual traffic crashes, car-jackings & the like in Atlanta (we are an hour away from that madhouse). I must admit, I admire the woman who came out of the gas station, saw a man get into her car to steal it (that is a common technique here - they call it 'sliding' when they climb in at the gas pump) with her two toddlers inside. She beat feet to the car, grabbed her gun from the glove box and shot the thief, yelling "Leave my kids alone!". In his face. Emptied the clip. Now THAT is a momma tiger defending the cubs!!! Except for the stray rounds flying around (bad) it looks like folks are sick and tired of being victims (good). People are also learning to take cover FAST when they hear gunfire in the more crime ridden areas. What a way to live. I remember talking to a young girl when I was a trooper who confided to me that she felt scared all the time (living in Chicago). So it is not just Atlanta..... Tonight as I wind down before bed I am simmering some beef broth from bones of the NY Strip steaks we had tonight, the pan drippings, and the sweet corn cooking water. Tossing the cobs in helps flavor it a bit, too. I'll simmer about 30 min, then let it sit in the refrig. overnight, and simmer it again in the morning. It makes such a nice rich stock for gravy or soup, and the house smells yummy! All in all, it has been a productive day. Even the dogs behaved (well, as good as they can....its like wrangling a kindergarden class)
  10. kappydell


    How is Mr. Momo doing? Nothing is as unsettling as having your own body play nasty tricks on you. We got back from Alabama on Tuesday. What a trip. On again, off again, and we finally just went ahead and WENT, already. Mary met her VA contact who is helping her write her disability application (his speciality). He met her 2 yrs ago, and kept telling her he could help her get VA disability to help out her monthly cash flow. She gets so little from SS that I actually list her as a dependent on my taxes, and has always felt bad about it. I keep telling her, I don't CARE about who makes more or less money, as long as we have enough around to live like we want, BUT it would sure help to have more, and she would be tickled to death to be the one bringing it to the table. Anyway, we traveled to Alabama and saw some friends there who just sold their house. They are living in their RV until they find a place they like (they have put in an offer on one they like a lot, so I have high hopes for their success). They are the couple that helped us move. It was sooooo nice to see them again, and give the Mr a coffee cup we found that had his name all over it...it had a neat airline-wings type logo on it and said "RV Pilot". Since he had been a pilot and was the main RV driver, it suited him to a tee - and he was tickled over it. The next day Mary went over to see the VA disability guy and spend 5 hours going over her mountains of evidence, making copies, and filling out forms. Tomorrow (after the 4th of July) we will go to the post office and mail the HUGE (I swear it must be almost 3 pounds) packet to the proper place, and wait...anywhere from 30 days to 4 months for a decision. Her friend thinks we will find out sooner, because we were careful to get medical records and documentation up the wazoo to present to the disability committee. He thinks she might well get 100% disability, which would be nearly $3,000 a month, with a year's back pay (tax free). It would certainly tickle her; we will now 'hurry up and wait" in our most military manner, to see what will happen. Those 5 hours I stayed in the motel room with the 6 dogs, running a nearly constant relay of walks and watching TV re-runs. We got back Tuesday night, exhausted. Cant do those long drives as easy as we used to. But it should be worth it in the end. Wednesday we spent mostly cleaning up the mess the cats (and the #$&@%% parrot, who picked apart the TV remote) made while we were gone those 2 days. Our friends fed them, but the parrot escaped from her cage while being fed, and could not be caught, nor did they pick the garden, so we had 3 huge bags of produce that had to be picked immediately upon returning. I am trying to figure out what to do with all the cucumbers, tomatoes, zucchini and green peppers that accumulated - Mary does not like fire and ice salad, which would be a natural. I guess my doc will be getting a big veggie package! We pulled out the veggies that were 'done' - the bush beans, the broccoli, etc, and replanted more bush beans and beets in their spaces. As for the TV, we are watching the one in the living room instead of the family room - it has its own remote, which we had hidden away. Tomorrow after we post the VA disability application, we will call the satellite TV folks for a new remote. The neighbor who loaned us his wood splitter is picking it up next week (he is taking down a couple trees and will be using it) but has promised we can use it in the fall to split more wood. Life goes on down here on what I have come to think of as our prep-stead.
  11. kappydell

    Free Online Database of Vintage Sewing Patterns

    Yep, that's us....."old skool"...….LOL.....the new 'classic'
  12. kappydell

    Free Online Database of Vintage Sewing Patterns

    Paper dolls....I wowed a young girl by drawing paper dolls for her to color and cut out. She thought I was soooooo clever...….no I am sooooooo frugal!
  13. kappydell

    Prepping for the “Golden Years”

    Our future orthopedic issues is one of the reasons we are working so hard to set up our new place asap while we still can move and do stuff. The raised bed gardens have a 3 foot center aisle to allow for future wheelchairs or scooters, for example. Planting dwarf fruit trees & shrubs instead of those that need a ladder to harvest. In the planning stage is a work area in our car port with a sturdy support frame with PULLEYS so we do not have to kill ourselves lifting things, like game carcasses for butchering, or lawn mowers for maintenance. Also getting electricity wired into the car port, so we can plug in an extra freezer and also the RV (in case someone stops by and wants to stay in the 'guest house' for more privacy. Of course we keep the RV propane tanks filled, so if we lose power here in the heat of the summer, we simply adjourn to said 'guest house' which has a generator for AC, a propane refrigerator/freezer and a propane stove. All the comforts, right down to Satellite TV (THAT cost us, but was worth it) and hot showers. Just fire up ye old genny! Not to mention I still want that above ground storm shelter I told you ladies about, but I have to save up for it. This winter we plan to do some forestry management in our 'wild' lower spot, near the creek. Same reason - to get things set up while we can still manage most of the labor (even if we do 'cheat' and utilize power equipment for efficiency). Getting older requires more pre-planning to maximize energy, ability and resources (and makes me nostalgic for the 'olden days' when I was in my 20s, 30s, and 40s and could just go do things on the spur of the moment!) So we will clear a sitting area, a fire pit, and plant our guerilla garden in scattered 'naturalized' plantings. Not to mention, clear a wide enough path down there for said 'scooter' access if needed in the future! Getting old ain't for sissies, but it DOES require more pre-planning.
  14. kappydell


    Ah, Live PD. I keep yelling at the TV and M keeps telling me to zip it. Reminds me of my working days, especially the verbally resisting people....its fun to finally be able to tell them off, even if its only on TV. LOL. I had to bite my tongue at work quite often.... We are getting used to rising earlier so we can go outside and work in the slightly cooler morning hours. We must be getting acclimated to the change in weather temperatures - 84 degrees now feels comparatively cool. But we remain vigilant, and keep an eye on our critters, too, especially the puppies who are too young to know to come in when they get hot. Pulled out the remains of the lettuce, radishes, and kohlrabi, too. They are bolted, and the broccoli re-growth is getting pretty spindly so it will probably get pulled. Will re-plant in the fall for an attempt at wintering over. I'm disappointed in the potatoes - the vines are dying back, and only 1-2 spuds under each one, if any. Our prepper friends said the garbage can potatoes did not produce for them when they tried it. Hmmm. Need some research as to why - On the other hand, the tomatoes, zucchini, cucumbers, winter squash, watermelons and sweet potatoes are taking care of business. Every other day we get a respectable picking of tomatoes and cucumbers, enough to make a couple salads. The cherry tomatoes are taking off - I plant those especially for sharing since most folks like to nibble them immediately. The bush beans are pouting (too hot) and not producing; the pole beans are trying to grow higher than their fence, and just starting to produce. They are so much easier to [pick than the bush type, I'm glad we put some in. The collards & kale are growing, just not really fast, but they are for fall crops anyway. Ditto the brussels sprouts. I am taking notes this first year; it will probably take a while before we figure out the different ways to garden here (zone 7) versus in zone 4. I'm considering shade devices to extend the spring growing season a bit into the warmer months. I read somewhere that we actually have six seasons not 4 all with differing weather patterns and crop reactions. The learning is fun. I've almost finished my new foraging calendar/cookbook for the southeast. (it was eye opening to find out we have manatees in Georgia - and the recipes for them are interesting. They keep referring to them as 'cows of the sea' in the books I've checked. Of course, they are seacoast forage meats, but we have plenty of other stuff inland to keep things interesting for quite a while!) I've also contacted the trappers assn down here and they accept our northern trapper classes for licensing down here. Bit by bit we are putting together our prep-stead know-how and skills adapted to the change in location. A day-trip to Alabama tomorrow, so M can see her VA contact. She is trying for VA disability and from what he says will probably get some to supplement her meager social security. That would be wonderful she is looking forward to it, as it would lessen her dependence on my income quite a bit. Of course, I could no longer claim her as a dependent on my taxes, but that would not be a bad thing.....
  15. kappydell


    Had a slow day today. Mary was at our friends house, helping him with some carpentry chores. I stayed home, wrangled the dogs, did laundry, etc. Garden today had cherry tomatoes, a couple big ones, cucumbers, a couple beans. The okra is zooming up - it loves this hot weather. It has been in the mid to high 90s all week. Working shorter spurts, with ample water, AND a big sun hat! We find we can work 1-2 hours prior to noon; then we knock off the physical stuff for the day (like logging). We started taking the aussie, Jack, down to the lake with us when we swim. He loves his wading pool - he loves the lake too. We gave him a summer haircut, too.

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