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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

    I thought I left hurricanes behind :)

    Well, we got lucky with Florence, but not our dear friends son who is in the Marine Corps and lives off base near Parris Island. He was right in the middle of things. His commandant would not release anyone to go home and prepare, believing that S Carolina would not be hit all that hard. So, by the time he got released to go home and take care of things, Florence had already blown down numerous trees on his place, damaged his roof and gutters, and he was without power about a week (believing that underground power lines would not be affected) and the river was rising fast. He did not get water in the house, but his property is a shambles. So his dad called us and asked if Mary (her nickname lately has been 'chainsaw mary') would go up there with him and help clear downed trees? Of course! As soon as the roads are passable they will drive up there and get cracking. So the last two days have been hectic - planning, packing, gathering supplies (when the power went out he lost all his food, so both families dipped into our preps to fill the gap) and staging things so as to be ready to go at a moments notice. Today we loaded the truck with 3 gas generators (heavy things - took four of us to lift them in), 3 gas chain saws, gas leaf blowers, gasoline, assorted hand tools of the logging sort, clothes, an enormous cooler (we will load just prior to leaving) and basic camping gear, including an indoor one-room air conditioner (just in case he loses power again it can be powered via generator to keep 1 room cool for het recovery and sleeping), a propane camp stove, lights, batteries galore, and all the trimmings! We are looking on this as an unexpected rotation of our preps. Dad is rather aggravated that his 30 year old Marine son, raised as a prepper did NOT have any preps in place as a matter of course. But of course, we still will go help - maybe (we HOPE) this will be a "teachable moment" and he will learn to be ready in the future. His Dad has had strokes, heart attacks, etc. and Mary will be watching him like a hawk to make sure he eats and gets enough rest, and does NOT over-do. I will mind the dogs, keep the home fires burning (I'm not very spry for 'combat-chainsaw conditions' and have physical therapy, doctor appointments and lab appointments already set up months in advance) so I will miss all the fun. Mary says I would have to ride atop the truck since it is packed full anyway, which I declined to do, LOL. So I guess it means hurricane Florence affected us anyway, just not directly.
  2. kappydell

    I thought I left hurricanes behind :)

    Since things have not hit us hard here we were cleaning up some of the assorted branches & trimmings from our hedgerow clearing. Yesterday we looked at the bushy and unwieldy saplings we had cut, laying in the ditch, among the all too abundant smilax vines (also known here as "ankle-grabbing-obnoxious vines) and told ourselves "there has got to be a better way to move this stuff out than floundering about in the brush pile". So, on went the thinking caps as we asked ourselves "how did great grandma & grandpa do this without killing themselves?: Well, they skidded out logs, brush, and other things too heavy or awkward to manhandle with horses or mules. Ok, we don't have a mule, but we DO have lawn tractor with a hitch...and a good rope....and a good knowledge of knots. Hmmmm. It sure sped things up to pile up those brushy piles, wrap them in rope, and pull them out, then down the road and over to our burn pile! Plus the pine boughs swept the road nice and clean from any stray dirt/grass/dead leaves and debris that came out with the branches! High fives all around and we beat the rain! I like to think the children that stopped to watch learned a new trick from two old dogs.
  3. kappydell


    Well, it seems like Flo has slowed down, so today we went on with our woodlot management program. We are now working on the borders of our land. There is a tree border, some big ones and many spindly ones. We are taking out the smaller ones that are crowding the bigger healthier ones. In a way it is harder than removing the big ones, because these are in a kind of hedgerow containing lots of smilax vines - big ones! (I now believe that a rose thorn stripper would work on them to remove thorns on the bigger vines. Nice to know if I decide to use them for basketry. They are certainly plentiful enough.) Anyway, we are saving the nice straight trunks of the little trees we are removing - between 3 and 5 inches in diameter, most of them, and tall. We are cutting them to post size, will teepee them somewhere or other (probably by by the dog pen) to dry a bit. We plan to use them in phase three of our woodlot-neatening system, when we make a path down to the lower ravine and creek area. They will make very attractive rustic handrails along the path for us. We have basically planned it to take three years...year one is to neaten up the upper yard where the home is, year two we work to clear some of the brush out of the lower creekside area, clearing an area to sit, have a fire pit, and maybe set up a target area along the mini-bluff for shooting. Year three is the physical improvements - put in a safe fire area, benches, and make a path down with those handrails, that is not too steep to allow use of a wheelchair or walker (we ain't getting any younger). I'd like to pave it with some gravel but we will have to see how workable that would be. It might wash out, since rain-water uses that route to drain down to the creek. Mary likes the idea of a gazebo down there, too. So we have our work cut out for us, but there is nothing like a good project to keep one motivated to get out of bed each day. We are monitoring Flo's progress with care. If nothing else, she is a good reason to stage our preps for the hurricane season as we will almost certainly have more as the season progresses. I hope our involvement is minimal, as the 2nd planting of green beans is just starting to bear, and we'd hate to see them drowned out right now. And as long as the older pole beans, sweet potatoes , carrots and okra keep providing, even slowly, we'd like to keep them, too. Its deer season here, but no hunting this year. We're just too dang busy. We put on a good two hours of clearing today, in 90 plus degree heat, so we are happy with our progress. Barbecued chicken & cheesy rice for dinner!
  4. kappydell


    Jeepers I am also wired as a night owl. Unfortunately M is a lark. So we end up meeting in the middle...we get up late morning. Being retired helps - getting up at 5 AM for many years was rough and I had one heck of a caffeine intake. Not any more. I just do housework half the night, and she has coffee ready when I get up because she gets up earlier than I do. Works for us old broads, LOL.
  5. kappydell

    I thought I left hurricanes behind :)

    Dar Im between Atlanta & Macon, kinda north central, I think. Closest towns are Milledgeville & Eatonton.
  6. kappydell


    today we are battening down hatches. tomorrow we will do more of the same until we tart getting prolonged rain & wind courtesy of the hurricane. We have all the tools & stuff we need, just pre-positioning emergency items and securing ;things that could leave suddenly in 90 mph breezes. Tomorrow I go to PT again, thinking we will have to discontinue it after the 30th as the gas expense for driving back & forth a couple times a week is getting prohibitive. We gotta da bills.... Had my mri and I am indeed crooked. I already knew that but when you can see squished and misshapen vertebra it looks so much awfuller, LOL. Pinched a nerve in my right arm, since my little finger is going numb now. Kinda like carpal tunnel but a different nerve. they fix it the same, but this is NOT the time to be one-handed (is there ever a good time?) Oh well, things are certainly not BORING lately. But we have the fall garden to get in (if it does not get drowned out by the hurricane season rains) and piles of brush to burn come October'...many, many piles. We will probably be burning brush the whole month of Oct, until Mary decides the snakes in the lower area have gone to sleep, then we will be thinning, pruning, cutting, and generally whipping that end of the woodlot into shape. We're considering a sitting area with a fire pit, and perhaps a target back stop against the hillside for keeping our aim sharp. We can get a combo hunting & fishing license here for $5 a year due to disability, and that includes deer hunting (heck, even alligator hunting if you are helping someone with a permit). Venison cans up nicely; even if Mary does not eat it, I do, and she likes to hunt, too. Deer are pretty but I do NOT like what they did to my fruit plantings, so they need thinning. But first things first. Florence is coming to call and she's looking like a handful. I'm sorry to hear of Joys passing ,Twilight. Our fur babies are such precious friends that their passing is always too soon. .
  7. kappydell

    I thought I left hurricanes behind :)

    I'll keep you in my prayers, Dar. We're in Georgia; 200 miles from where Flo is due to hit, but we are still battening. Like you we have lots of trees, and in our area there are frequent power failures from wind as it is. Our sole access road has a history of washing out in past prolonged storms, too, so we are preparing for that as well. ;I did not realize hurricanes could affect so far inland, but our neighbors assure us we often are 'participants' in such events. It still beats snow/blizzards/ice storms though. But then again we have three generators, tested and ready to go, as well as a multitude of preps for bugging in. If all else fails we adjourn into the motor home, cook on its propane system, run the AC on its generator, and watch the TV on its satellite dish. I'm more worried about some of our less prepared neighbors - the hard drinker in the low area that might flood; the meth head up the road, and her children. I don't really want them knocking on our door asking/demanding help and getting fuggly when we decline to rescue them. Id hate to have to deal with that, but what will be, will be. We will deal. Right now we re battening down, pre-positioning things we might need, making sure we have gas for the gennys, securing the yard stuff....yep we ALL know the drill, I guess.
  8. kappydell

    medical testing - ugh

    Well I got my MRI - I was totally surprised, it was unpleasant, but they really had ways to combat many of the issues with the mri - earplugs for the noise, a decent leg support (as opposed to pillows, which tend to slip and slide and flatten halfway thru the test), and (my favorite) a fan to blow a cool breeze thru the mri tube (it gets HOT in there). I wouldn't call it a pleasant test, but it was not terrible, either. I could tolerate it for the 30 min it took for the two scans. Surprise! Surprise #2 - when they gave me my disc with the mri images on it, my computer can actually read it and display the pics! Now I can take my time looking at the actual films, instead of getting only a glimpse from the doc. Hoooray! Surprise #3 - it looks like I fractured a sacral vertebra when I landed on my posterior (the incident that started the spinal issues). No wonder everything hurts when I move wrong...or too much...or too long...etc, etc, etc. So on Tues I will call the neuro folks back & ask when they want me back again. Heck, if they keep me going into Macon I might even stop getting lost!
  9. kappydell

    medical testing - ugh

    Oh joy. I went to the neurologist on advice of my doc...."I don't like your gait".....as a consult to see if I could do anything else about my back. I walk hunched over quite a bit. The PT she sends me to seems to help, but I still tire quickly, then down I go. So...I took my x-rays and my ct scan films to the neuro folks (40 miles away). They looked & told me I had an awful back. Discs degenerated to almost nothing, vertebra slipping all over the place, and 'rotary' scoliosis (didn't even know there was such a thing!). Now they want MRIs. 40 miles away, again. (At least they did not demand I drive in Atlanta....NOBODY in GA drives there unless have no choice.) UGH. So now I am researching all those back things and various treatments - so I have info and can ask sensible questions. I do not intent to go the injection route (don't need steroids or other stressors causing a cancer return) and spinal surgery does not impress me with its prognosis. So into 'research mode' I go. I need to be armed with data.
  10. kappydell

    Busy, busy, busy...

    Another old-schooler here! Glad to see I'm not the only one
  11. kappydell


    TY Midnight Mom. From one Y2K leftover to another! I got my seeds fermenting now. Bananas are drying in the dehydrator. Took tomatoes & sweet banana peppers, along with 2 lbs of WISCONSIN cheese (as requested from our trip) to a friend. Got the new belt on the lawn mower deck, so Mary could go cut a neighbor's hayfield. It turned into a lawn, much to the delight of her 10 year old son. Around here kids don't play in tall grass, its too hard to see the snakes. I guess we made up for the last two days of relative 'wheel-spinning' and actually got several things done at once! The kitty is home and doing OK, though she does not like being given medicine. I'm sore from the physical therapy after missing a week and a half. Gotta call back on Monday and make new appointments - I forgot to do it while I was there. Tomorrow we try (as best as we can) to sleep in, then off to sew tote bags in the local college team colors. Homecoming is coming up...
  12. kappydell


    Well....we did get ONE thing done today. Some days that's about all we can manage! Had to get up early to take one of our cats to the vet. She tried to deliver a huge kitten (3x normal size) and ended up with a uterine prolapse - a big one. So she will be spayed and they will fix it. She was a good mama in her day, but that is done now. Then we tried to find a replacement deck belt for the lawn mower. NO luck, it has to be ordered. So we pay the extra $10 to have is sent out asap (tomorrow) because with the week we were gone the lawn went kinda prehistoric hayfield mode. Then we went out to pick the garden, as we do every morning as a matter of routine. The lady we had feeding/checking on the cats was out daily, but did not pick anything from the garden as we had invited/asked her to. So we have about a bushel of assorted veggies - huge okra (too big to make into crisps), tomatoes that are splitting from all that sudden rain, and zeppelin sized cucumbers. The watermelons we put in for her are rotting in the garden, as she kept waiting for them to 'get bigger' even tho we told her several times she had purchased 'individual sized' watermelons - minis, if you will. Oh well, her melons, her loss. Tonight I am cutting up green peppers into a small dice for our freezer. They are excellent tossed a few at a time into our breakfast omelets, our hamburger barbecue mixture, and into macaroni salads. We also got quite a few green beans of varying maturities, which I will snip and string as I sit and watch TB over the next few days. The split tomatoes I will cut the good parts for salad, and save the seeds from the messy parts for planting in the future. I vaguely recall that I need to ferment them in water to kill some virus or other that otherwise 'winters over' on the seeds. I don't recall which one(s) because I read that article nearly 30 years ago; but the fermentation is not an inconvenience so I will do it as a matter of course. We did score some cheapo bananas at Walmart back up in Wisconsin - 24 cents a pound (!!) so we got some green ones just before leaving for me to experiment with. I want to try drying them, but at the usual price around here of 59 cents a pound, no way am I going to experiment with them. The dehydrated okra pod crisps turned out wonderful. Just sprinkle freshly picked, washed green pods with oil (I used canola, some prefer olive), sprinkle with flavoring (I did not have ranch dressing powder, so I used onion and garlic powders). Dehydrate at the higher end of the vegetable setting for a looooong time (took me 30 hours) and they get nice and crispy. You don't even have to stem them (the steam makes a nice handle when munching). The seasonings make these very savory, and the dehydrating until crisp eliminates the texture that some folks don 't like (sliminess). I prefer the dehydrated to the oven roasted versions - I can use much less fat, even a fat spray, just to hold the seasonings on, since I won't scorch them in the dehydrator. I figured out what I want to do with Moms handwritten and saved recipe clippings. I'll get a package of those clear page protectors, and insert them; for the newspaper clippings I'll get some of those magnetic photo pages to fit the binder and group them together. That way if one of my siblings wants a recipe I will know how to lay my hands on them! She also wrote down all the lyrics to her favorite songs when she first started getting Altzheimers, to help her to sing (which she loved to do) as long as possible. I am the keeper of those handwritten lyric sheets, and yes, I treasure my 'ephemeral' collectables as they call paper antiques now days. Now I know what spedific songs to play on the piano on her birthday, and imagine I hear her running from the other end of the house to stand at my side and sing as I play, as she loved to do. Sweet memories.
  13. kappydell


    I had a nice visit on the 'old homestead' for the last time. I have some nice momentos, especially my late mothers recipe books & clippings. Some are from 1948 when she was 18 years old! Some recipes are hand written on various pieces of scratch paper, newspaper clippings, and the like. Even her weekly bread baking recipe (Makes 8 small or 6 large loaves, or, as she wrote "4 loaves, 2 cinnamon swirl loaves, and a pan of supper buns". I see where I got my love of recipe collecting from. Many childhood favorites are there, some from her mother, some from relatives (2nd cousins from her mothers; side) and some in my fathers handwriting where he re-worked her family size recipes to fit his later baking as a widower. I have a year book from when I was in the 8th grade (I look like a baby) and church cookbooks from the 2 parishes we went to for church. Best of all, I have the family bible, with all the info in her handwriting in the middle - the usual genealogical kind of stuff. I am most grateful to have all of these things. I also have the round oak (heavy, too) dinner table we all ate around. The chairs were sold at auction, but Dad kept the table out for me (thank you, Dad). I also got some nice jewelery - pins and clip earrings - that belonged to her. Nothing really fancy, but treasure to me. Dad's health is starting to fail - at 89 he can't keep up the house & 2 acre yard anymore, so he sold it - it went more quickly than I expected. I had a nice chat with my sister and brother too while I was there. Sis has the family photos and will make up copies either printed or digital for us other brothers & sisters. Brother is storing the table and Grandma's treadle sewing machine until I can get back up there to trailer them home. Dad is frustrated - he can't polka anymore, play golf, and camping is very hard for him. He was always a strapping active man, so this physical impairment is difficult for him. He is starting to fall down more often. He has a lady friend he travels with (who also likes to polka and they travel to Arizona in the winter together) so he will rent a room in her house, so he has someone around to help him as needed, and he helps her when she has bad days (gout). I'm glad he has someone to help him out and encourage him day to day. At their ages it is all about companionship, more than anything else. Don't know how much longer he will be around, so I'm stepping up my contacts with him via phone and internet. He likes seeing photos of our place in GA, he is familiar with the area from his working in the area back in the 1940s. So here's to my folks - thank you Mom & Dad for all your hard work raising the family! You did well - no felons, no drug users, no drunks. Just boring, employed, self-reliant kids, and grandkids, (and great grandkids).
  14. My 'share' of the momentos taken from the old home place was Mom's collection of recipes. Some are wonderful and not easy to find anymore. I have seen quite a few posts on sites asking for English Muffin recipes for the kind that are NOT a batter type, requiring a ring to shape them, but for a type that is cut out with a cookie cutter, then baked on a griddle. Sure enough, in an old 1948 bread book (My mom was 18 years old back then...) was one for English Muffins. So for those who are looking for a cut out English Muffin, here 'tis. From the Wheat Flour Institute publication, A Primer of Yeast Breads, from 1948 ENGLISH MUFFINS 1 pkg yeast 1/4 c lukewarm water 1 cup milk 2 TB sugar 1 1/2 tsp salt 3 TB shortening 1 egg at room temperature 4 cups enriched flour (approximately) Soften yeast in lukewarm water. Scald milk and add sugar, salt and shortening. Cool to lukewarm. Add 2 cups flour and mix well. Add the softened yeast and an egg. Beat thoroughly. Add enough more flour to make a moderately soft dough. Turn out on lightly floured board and knead until smooth and satiny. Put into a greased bowl, greasing the surface lightly. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about one hour. Punch down and let rest 10 minutes. Roll out dough to 1/4 inch thick. Cut with a 3 inch cookie cutter. Cover and let rise on the kneading board until double (about 45 minutes). Bake slowly on UNgreased heavy griddle or frying pan. Have the griddle hot at first but then lower the heat to brown the muffins more slowly. Bake 7-8 minutes per side. This makes about one dozen 3-inch muffins. (I like the idea of baking in a fry pan, which could be done over a fire if the oven/stove/electricity were kaput.) Bless her, she also left her hand written recipe for the bread she used to make for the family - it makes eight (!) loaves, or as her recipe says, 4 loaves, 2 cinnamon loaves, and a pan of supper rolls. Yum! I'm baking tomorrow!
  15. kappydell

    Prepping for the “Golden Years”

    The ones from safesheds.com are look like little stucco sheds with a steel door. They will paint them any one of 90 colors you want!

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