Showing posts with label life. Show all posts
Showing posts with label life. Show all posts

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Fun With Children

It's been a long day on the end of a very productive but long weekend so more coherent thoughts are not really forming. I want to share a few fun parenting moments of late.

-We started tiny child t ball for my son. At the first practice he tried to pee in 'the big back yard'. Wifey had to explain to him that it is not acceptable to drop your pants and pee on the baseball field.

-Walker also started this new game called 'attack'. As in he says/ yells 'ATTACK' then attacks his little sister. He is firmly convinced if you yell attack it is then a game and thus acceptable. Everyone else is far less than convinced.

-Princess is a riot. She really likes to climb the brick outcropping in front of the fireplace. She then used to move up onto an end table to stand and bounce around laughing. It's great except she falls down all the darn time. We ended up moving the table. She now pursues her favorite hobby of standing precariously as high as possible elsewhere.

-She has one of those booster chair that clips onto the regular chair things. Little munchkin managed to push off of the table and knock the whole chair over last week. Darn near gave Wifey a heart attack. Thankfully she was fine. Now we make sure it's close enough to the table that she cannot get her legs up to push.

-Princess feeds the dog at the table. Like just hands him food. Dog obviously likes this. He is old and gentle so there isn't a concern there. It is rather funny to me though it sort of bothers Wifey.

-Walker has proclaimed the place on post I work is 'where the army is'. Our entire force is working out of that particular place. The other day he saw me making lunch and was quite concerned/ unimpressed that the Army doesn't have food.

-We took our first fishing trip of the season. Walker finally caught on that there wasn't any line or a bobber coming out of his pole. I fixed the line (he tangled/ twisted it all up), slapped on a bobber and a lead weight. He can't keep the thing in the water, let alone still, so he isn't catching anything. I'm more concerned about the kid hooking himself.

-We went for a family jog this morning which was fun.

-Princess, who is pleasantly plump has a little velour track suit thing. It is ridiculously cute.

That is all.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

What Have You Done Lately To Prepare?

In recent weeks this has fallen off so I want to play catch up. Lost some weight which was good. My fitness level has dropped due to field time but it'll come back. Goes to show as a reminder that you lose weight at the table and get fit on the track/ at the gym. I'm trying to focus on a good consistent diet to lose another 10 pounds.

Going to try to implement record keeping for running from here forward. Did 3 miles this morning. A half mile out, a 1m(ile), .75m, .5m, .25m 'sprint' workout then a half mile back.

Was supposed to take a sweet pistol class awhile back but unfortunately work crapped all over that dream. It's not like I talked to my boss 4 months out before booking or anything, oh wait a second I did. Was really depressed about it for a few days but what can ya do. On the plus side I've still got the case of 9mm ammo set aside for whenever I do make it to one. The guy was cool about the whole thing and even though it was just a week out he gave me a full refund. Since it won't work to try anything again for awhile I'll probably put the refund into a case of 62 grain M855 5.56 ammo.

Also on the plus side I ordered a new pocket knife, an Al Mar Eagle HD. My concept of use is for a light EDC blade to do basic tasks and I suppose if needed go all Singer Sewing Machine on somebody. A light, thin knife with a full 4" blade seems like it'll fit the niche well.

Picked up a couple extra stainless steel water bottles recently. Got tired of moving em around. Now I have one to carry, one in my assault pack/ bail out bag/ get home bag, and one in each of our BOB's. Kind of along these lines I have finally unified my military and personal survival level 2.5 systems into one. The full on level 3 entertainment system is a bit more complicated due to different needs and work mandated color schemes. Anyway it's a good exercise to work through.

So that is what I have been up to in terms of preparedness lately. What have you been up to?

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Post Field Time Thoughts

1) The do-er does what the checker checks. The checker checks what the inspector inspects.

2) The more capable a group is (or appears to be but pro's can tell the difference) the less they actually have to fight. To put it into a nonmilitary context let us look at Tiny. Tiny is a 6'1" 330 pound mason (stone and cement not the group) with a 23" neck and arms like medium sized trees. After work he likes to have a couple beers at the bar near his home in a working class area. Tiny could faint at the sight of blood and have a glass jaw but WHO would never know? After all what person in their right mind picks a fight with a 300+ pound man named Tiny?

3) For the entirety of this recent experience the only knife I used was a Mora. I think it was the companion model. It worked out great, till it rained. Unlike hobby outdoorsmen I didn't have the choice to stay home or hide in a tent reading a book. While mora's are priced to be functionally disposable in a long term (even a deployment) scenario you might not be able to get a new knife when needed so that is problematic. I'm half convinced military knives need to be coated, stainless steel or otherwise somewhat rust resistant. More on the mora later.

4) I am firmly convinced that baring new superior technology I will never go into the field without a Petzl headlamp. Those things are so rugged and useful.

5) I need to buy another metal spork.

6. Food is a crutch.

7. Coffee and I are past the point of fun. It is a need more than anything. Sure if I had to I could quit, though it would suck for about 2 weeks, but it is easier to add more of it to the stash.

8.When facing IDF target the spotter, that is generally the easiest way to do it. Computer programs that give line of sight analysis can help a lot in terms of where to look.

9. Stand to, which is 100% (or very close) of personnel pulling security from roughly a half hour before dawn to a half hour after, and the same for sunset, still has some applicability in today's world.

10. Always bring baby wipes. Chapstick and foot powder are probably good ideas too.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Snow in Louisiana

Well it is snowing. Fun times.

Crazy Weather Prep

So today I went outside at about 5:30 am and it was a balmy 45 degrees. By mid morning it was probably 55. Then the mercury dropped like Bernie Maddof's hedge fund shares. By 3 it was under 40 and by 5 it was 35. At 3:30 it started to drizzle. Now the mercury is sitting around 34 and it is raining pretty hard.

The weather people say it is going to turn to freezing rain then snow overnight. The expected overnight low is 20ish. As the weather heats up a bit tomorrow (at least to above freezing) but keep raining till at least mid morning. I know those are warm temps for some places in the winter but I live in Louisiana

At 2 or so today both the parishes in the area had preemptively canceled school for tomorrow. After some hemming and hawing work decided to do the same thing. By 4:45 the answer was "get home before sunset and stay there. See you all Monday." So a spontaneous 3 day weekend seems to have occured.

This is nice because the idea of driving in the snow down here does not appeal to me. Now don't get me wrong, I am quite comfortable driving in the snow and have an amply capable vehicle to do so in. The issues that concern me are 1) the lack of snow plows, sanding trucks, etc all and 2) Cleti. Cleti being the plural of Cletus. Cletus, bless his heart, drives a huge truck and if he has ever driven in snow it's been a couple times in his life. Cleti probably haven't figured out that while a 4x4 truck will go like crazy in the snow it isn't very good at turning or stopping. I do not want to be driving nearby when Cleti finds this out.

Anyway the coming bad weather got me a touch worried. Our infrastructure and the people who maintain it are simply not very used to cold weather. Often usual stresses can bring up known weak points or potential issues that a low probability of occurring made not cost effective to prepare for.

So what did I do to better position myself? Filled up the family hauler that was sitting at a half tank and got some groceries. Didn't absolutely NEED to do either of those things but wanted to. Also having the stuff I want for the next couple days will help me avoid the imprudent trip in bad weather because I really want X. When I got home I moved a bunch of firewood so it was easier to get to. Also plugged in the battery pack thingie to make sure it is charged just in case the power goes out.

Now I'm home planning to watch this whole thing unfold. I can be pretty comfortable no matter what happens so simply not leaving is my plan. Could be entertaining.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Saturday Night Ramblings

I found myself in Walmart the other day. Needed a haircut and some light work on the family hauler and there is only one place to do both of those things around here. Turns out everybody else had the same idea! So I was waiting for both things and looking at the ammo situation.

It was actually pretty good. Lots of .223, 7.62x39, .308 and of course all the shotgun shells and hunting type calibers you could want. A guy was talking to the dude working behind the counter. Guy didn't now what type of ammo his SKS shot but wanted to buy some. Dude said 7.62x54R but Guy was not exactly convinced. I said it was 7.62x39. Walmart Dude was happy somebody else was dealing with his problem. Guy was not entirely convinced. He asked if I was sure to which I replied that I was. He asked the same question a similar way. I said I was absolutely positive and would bet him a thousand dollars cash on the matter. Guy was convinced. That narrowed it down to caliber. Dude had both steel cased (Wolf I think) and brass cased ammo. Guy wasn't sure about the difference.

That lead to a 2 minute discussion. Since Guy didn't reload (thank God!) we agreed steel cased would suit his needs at a much more agreeable price. Guy bought 3 boxes and we both went about our days.

Today I had to run some errands and ended up at a surplus store. Got a castle nut wrench which I am long overdue for purchasing and a used USGI wool blanket, picked up the blanket for $10 which I was pretty happy with. After that I went to scout out a place to do some camping. It looks good. In my time driving around the woods here I definitely realized the longest line of site you get here is under 200 meters with under 100 being more common. That's bumped my desire to acquire a precision bolt action rifle, lately boosted by the book I am currently reading Point of Impact (Thanks Zero and Harry Flashman!), down a big notch. Short of improbable shots down a strait road, in a field, etc Project AR could easily dominate any shooting tasks here, hell an iron sighted 30-30 would do around 90% of it just fine and a shotgun could cover 70% or so.

I may go camping tomorrow but it depends on how far I get on a project at home. As a kid and teenager I absolutely loved camping. I went at least monthly forever and for multiple years about every other weekend. Then I joined the Army and subsequently started sleeping outside all the time for work it ceased to be any fun. Since then I could probably count the amount of times I've slept outside on the ground, outside of work,  on one hand. Each time involved family so I was pretty much stuck. Now I am for better or worse at a place in my career where I have been removed from that sort of thing for awhile. I sort of miss it.

That is good because incidentally Walker seems to be expressing an interest in camping. He went with Mother in Law in the drive way a week or so back. Except he noted it wasn't real camping because "the truck didn't move and we didn't sleep in a tent" (She has a camper and it was going to be 20 that night) but he seemed to have fun all the same. So maybe we'll start doing some of that in the yard then ultimately out and about. He is getting towards the right age to start doing more outside stuff. We've got the gear so that is not an issue. Anyway we will see where that goes.

Today while going over my BOB I made some changes. Added a few pouches to give me more readily accessible space. Aside from that mostly it was transitioning to a winter setup admittedly a bit late. Added a pair (top/ bottom) of silk weight long underwear and a wool sweater. I took out a waffle top that had been my sole piece of cold weather gear (for summer in AZ). Swapped a desert pattern goretex for a multicam shell to better fit the area. Also added a pair of wool gloves. If I am smart in the spring when I ditch that stuff I'll put it all in a box or bag to make the transition easy in the future.

I realized some holes that need to be filled today going through our gear. They are going to be listed not so much for you but so I can remember in a month or whatever when I want to fill them:
3x wide mouth stainless steel water bottles (1x ghb, 1x everyday 1x wifey)
1x nesting cup for 1q bottle with carry pouch
3x Louisiana state maps (or a western central LA type map if I can fine one larger than parish but below state sized)
3x eastern Texas maps if available
1x trowel
2 pair wool socks
a kydex belt holster that will hold a Glock 9 with a light yet be reasonably concealable. The big Safariland is great for a battle belt, duty, OC role but I'd like to have a holster (raven concealment, bravo concealment, etc) that could hide under an oversized shirt or a sweatshirt. Should get a pair of good mag pouches along with it.

Tomorrow or the next day I'm going on a monster rant about Bushcrafting. I think bushcrafting is to camping what crossfit is to exercise. They do so many good things but also do some really silly things and take it all so seriously. That should be a fun talk.

I pulled the trigger and ordered the stuff for Project 870. Brownells matte black Alumahyde, Elzetta light mount, GG&G rear sling mount and a half dozen essetac cards. I can procure a light locally and have some slings in my box o gun junk. Think I ultimately want to use a Magpul MS3 to have the 2-1 capability but I'm not sure. Looking forward to getting that all set up.

Realized that one of my not explicitly defined but over arching goals for this year is to have all the guns I currently own set up how I want them to be. Of course there is some evolution as new products come out, we test stuff, yadda yadda yadda but instead of buying another gun or piece of kit I want to get the stuff I have all squared away. Mostly my 642 as it is just a handy little thing. Honestly it is probably too handy for my own good. That little wheel gun is so light and convenient that in moments of weakness or laziness which inevitably occur more than they should I carry it instead of a more potent firearm.

Got some Lone Star beer the other day. One of those cliche Texas things I had to try. It is pretty good straddling the line of being flavorful without too heavy or busy.

Anyway I'm bored of writing now so it's time to wrap this up. Talk to you all later.


Saturday, January 4, 2014

It's Just One Of Those Days

So far today everything I have tried to do has gone very badly. I tried to make coffee this morning which is a simple thing I do every day. The pot spewed water, half made coffee and grounds all over the counter making a huge mess. It looked like maybe the filter had collapsed down which happens sometimes.

Tried to post Prairie Patriot's Fighting Load Contest Entry and the interweb kept eating it. Not once or twice but a half dozen times.
After cleaning up the kitchen and the coffee pot I tried to make coffee again. Same problem but the filter was fine. Might be that I need to better clean or just replace the coffee pot. At least this time I got a quarter cup of shitty coffee. Cleaned up the kitchen AGAIN.

Tried to post PP's contest entry again by breaking it up into 2 parts to use less space but that didn't work. Tried again and had all his pics and text in, was just writing my little discussion at the end part and it crapped out AGAIN.

I'm at my wits end and it is just over halfway through the day. It would be one thing if I was trying to rebuild an engine while doing organic chemistry but making coffee and doing blog stuff are routine things I do every single day.

I've been sick for the last 3 or so days. Thankfully I'm over the hump so to speak but still not feeling good.  Have a lingering cough and just enough of a headache to be annoying. So today I don't think much of anything is going to happen. Given the way things have gone so far I don't want to have this terrible luck pour over into other areas.

Last night I started soaking some beans to make chili and now they are boiling in a big pot on the stove. Since I already started that it will continue. Need to go get the rest of the stuff later today. Honestly I'm sort of winging this one which given the way today is going may not be a good thing. However since I free poured random beans to soak there isn't much going back

My plan is as follows:
beans -.5lb red, .5lb black, .75lb pinto (all rough wts)
chuck roast or other cheap beef- about 2 pounds
a can of stewed tomatoes or 2
a big onion
a bell pepper
some garlic finely chopped
cumin, red pepper flakes and seasoning salt to taste

I plan to serve it with corn bread. The goal is for me to have a few extra meals out of this batch.

Think I'll fire up the world band radio tonight. It will be the first time here in Louisiana so that is sort of special. Sitting by the fire listening to the radio sounds like a nice way to pass the evening hours.

Well here is hoping today picks up for me and that yours is going better than mine. We should be back to normal posting tomorrow.


Thursday, January 2, 2014

RIP Daniel Morgan Mosby

It is with deep sadness that I report the passing of John Mosby's infant son. You can get the whole story here. I genuinely cannot imagine the pain and loss the Mosby's are going through right now. Say a prayer, worship at an alter, sacrifice a chicken, dance naked in the moonlight or whatever you believe in to help support John, HH6 and TMO during these difficult days.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Thoughts on Recent Field Experiences

-Do not make the mistake of assuming that because everyone, or more realistically a high percentage of the group, are trained and even combat tested that they can work together as a group. Working together as a group is it's own beast. First you've got to get everyone onto a common operating picture. While it is true the fundamentals are the same all over, as we see in Max's discussions of how the Brit's do it, little things vary widely from unit to unit or service to service. Once the unit has established a common way of doing things THEN that needs to be tested to figure out all the little kinks. With a trained group this process should happen pretty quickly but it does in fact need to happen. This is why everyone in your "group" doing the same training such as Combat Rifle/ Contact Drills and Combat Patrolling is so important. This way everyone gets trained WHILE you figure out all the little stuff so by the time you leave the group has a solid basis to train on for the future.

-You do not know what you do not know. The only way to find out is by trying to do stuff. Maybe there is an important skill set you are defficient in. Maybe a small part on a critical piece of gear breaks notably so it should be replaced with a better widget or spares stocked. Maybe an important doo dad sucks batteries like a fat kit with a Popsicle. Maybe your radios can't talk across the street, let alone for their whole theoretical range. The point is that you have to get out and test stuff, people and systems to see how they actually work.

-Test your commo plan in as close to realistic of a scenario as possible, as early as possible. Turning the radios on and doing a comms check in the same building/ parking lot immediately prior to SP is not a validation of a comms plan.

-Train as you fight but don't be stupid. There is little, if any value in being cold solely for the sake of being cold, wet just to be wet, etc. Beyond familiarity to learn a bit about yourself there isn't any value in stupid stuff. Realistic training is hard enough on it's own so no need to be stupid.

-Dave Canterbury recently started (or at least it's the first time I've heard it) using the phrase "smoothing it". The point being that you are getting beyond roughing it to a point where things are fairly comfortable and decently set up so they could be sustainable for the long term. It doesn't necessarily imply a ton more gear, just the right stuff that fills multiple roles and a solid understanding of how best to use it. You can be pretty comfortable without bringing the kitchen sink if you practice and put a little bit of cash into the right gear.

-Plan for things to be a bit worse than they are realistically going to be. A bit colder, a bit wetter and the problem lasting a few days longer. This way you are unlikely to get caught short. 

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Check Ya Later

Over the next few days posting may be light. Depending on events and spotty internet I may be late responding to emails or comments. Got a post in the cue for tomorrow but don't expect a lot till after the New Year.


Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas Day 2013

Merry Christmas. Today will be filled to the brim with family fun, presents and more food n drink than are probably reasonable. Don't have anything big to say. Baring something unforeseen and amazing this will be the official 2013 Christmas post.

I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas or whatever else it is you choose to celebrate. Regardless of the religious and or cultural celebration you choose I hope you spend some time with friends and family doing good wholesome stuff; or maybe not so wholesome stuff, just try not to get on Cops with a knock down drag out family brawl. Talk to you all later.

If you have spare time get your fighting load contest entry put together.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Flying Armed: 2013 Edition

This holiday season the operational cache is getting set up I needed to transport the weapons involved. So I found myself getting ready to fly from a small regional airport, through Houston to the PNW.

The guns went into a Pelican Case. I was shopping the longer rifle cases but found a short squat Pelican 1600 case just sitting in the garage. With the buttstock folded and the slant muzzle device off the AK fit, just barely diagonally in the case. I got some foam from the Wally World to fill the gap in the case then cut it to fit the rifle. The little revolver went in next followed by 3 (empty) mags for the rifle, a box of .38 ammo for the revolver then 3 little boxes of 7.62x39 Wolf HP to load up 2 of the mags if need be. Last went in a pair of holsters, one pocket and a basic IWB holster for the revolver, all the speedloaders I could find (can order more for home later) and my Kershaw Blur. I locked it up with a pair of keyed alike padlocks.

It was a quiet regional airport. I got up to the counter and told the gal I needed to declare firearms. She got another employee who knew the procedure. I opened the case so he could look inside. He said "Is that an AK" to which I replied "Yes". He asked me to show that the revolver was empty so I took it out of the foam insert, flipped the chamber open then tapped the ejector rod. When I went to do the same with the rifle he said it was fine. He then asked if the mags were loaded and I said they were not. The guy handed me the standard declaration form which I signed then tossed into the box. I closed the box then put the locks back on. From "I have a firearm to declare" to done it was maybe 2 minutes.

Travel with kids was well, travel with kids. They were really good but it's still a hassle. Anyway on the other end we got the rest of our baggage then walked to the oversized luggage area and got the pelican case. We went on our way. Everything was fine. As a family we have flown with firearms three times. All went fine without any issues.

Broadly speaking issues I have heard of can be broken down into getting messed with checking in/ collecting the guns and them being lost/ stolen.

As to getting messed with checking them in. We have only flown from free state to free state with our guns that were legal on both ends and packed properly in legitimate hard locking cases. I have heard all sorts of horror stories from NYC, Mass and the like. If you are there I would be extra sure to cross your t's and dot your I's. Just read the TSA/ airline policies and comply with them and you should be just fine. I think having a legit case vs some jerry rigged lunch box is advisable and prevents a lot of hassle. Pelican cases are expensive but awesome.

Loss/ theft is an interesting topic. The airlines have a complicated job getting a lot of bags to different places in a timely manner and inevitably a certain percentage of bags are misrouted, misplaced or even lost. However some folks have noted bags with firearms or other good stuff tend to get stolen lost more often.

It is my personal opinion that small locking cases inside normal luggage probably lead themselves more to theft than a big, hard to open case. A small lock box could get stashed and slipped into a lunch box to be opened by the thief at home. On the other hand it is harder to discretely carry a fairly secure box the size of a microwave out discretely after work. I've heard of people locking their small case with a wire to the suitcase. If limited to a single bag I'd probably go with a big locked pelican type case to hold my spare clothes and such that also would protect my gun.

It is true there is risk in flying with guns. Heck there is risk to everything. I'd be awful careful and get special insurance to fly with an expensive class III weapon or something but for a couple normal guns it's probably not worth the hassle. 

In conclusion with a bit of preparation I do not think flying with firearms is a big deal. Pay a bit of attention, follow the rules and you will probably be fine. If you want to bring a gun on a trip or whatever I would be comfortable doing so.

What have your experiences flying with firearms been?

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Problem Admiration, Perfect vs Good Enough and Being The Change You Want

There is a great phrase called "problem admiration". You've got this problem so you think about it and how hard it is and how there are no great solutions, over and over and over. You just don't know what to do so you keep thinking about it. Maybe you even become a negative Nancy and start sharp shooting actual ideas to do something about said problem.

The way out of problem admiration phase is to actually do something. There may not be a perfect solution, often that's how life works. Everything has a down side or some element of risk. The point is to look at the problem then figure out the best solution you can implement in the near future given the various constraints and other factors in play. A decent answer to your problem next week beats a perfect one indefinitely in the future when you will magically have more money/ time/ motivation/ space/ better friends/ etc.

John Mosby did a great post titled The Kernel of Resistance.  The point I got from it is that you should actually do something about the problems you want changed. Don't bitch about it, do something. Instead of just worrying try to mitigate the problems you see coming. Be the change you want to see.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Quote of the Day

 Aesop's take away's from the 1986 Miami FBI shoot out. These observations are valid beyond the limited context of that fateful day.

1) Teams beat individuals
2) individuals vs. individuals devolves to who is more motivated and better trained
3) vests don't work when they're in the car trunk
4) rifles don't work in the car trunk
5) rifles beat shotguns beat pistols
6) people don't die instantly from one bullet unless it's to the brainstem
7) driving along without a plan doesn't work well as actually having a plan

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Engineer Drinking Song



        Chorus: (Sung after each verse)
        We are, we are, we are, we are, the Combat ENGINEER'S
        we can, we can, we can, we can, demolish forty beers
        Drink up, drink up, drink up, drink up and come along with us
        For we don't give a damn, for any Old Man, who don't give a damn for us - Hey

 
        Verses:
         An ENGINEER and a tanker once found a gallon can
        Said the tanker to the ENGINEER "Out drink me if you can!"
        The tanker took three drinks and died, his face was turning green.
        But the ENGINEER kept drinking, it was only gasoline.
 

        My father was a miner on the upper Malamute,
        My mother was a hostess in a house of ill repute.
        When I was only sixteen years, she shouted loud and clear
        Get out of the house, become a man, and join the ENGINEERS!

 
       The Air Force and the Navy came to town to have some fun
        Down to the taverns where the fiery liquors run
        But all they found was broken glass, the Engineers had come
        And traded junk filled demo bags for gallon kegs of rum

 
        We lay down all their rolling roads and cut down all their trees
        And if the order ever comes, we'd forge the raging seas
        When ever they want to sleep awhile, we put them up a town
        And we build the blasted bridges so the Infantry won't drown

        We put them over rivers and across the mountain streams
        Do everything but tuck them in and wish them pleasant dreams
        And when the going's really tough, and shells do burst our ears
        The whole Division's apt to say, GOD, SEND THE ENGINEERS

 
        We build and blow your bridges and fix your roads up too,
        There aren't too many things in life an ENGINEER can't do.
        You never seem to need us 'til your minds are filled with fear,
        Then the first thing that you call for are the Combat ENGINEERS.

 
        We plan and guard your barriers, and we build your bunkers too,
        And each and every war we prove what the ENGINEERS can do.
        For in the thick of every fight, the cry has been for years
        Come clear the pass, and save our ass, you Combat ENGINEERS.

Monday, December 2, 2013

What Did You Do To Prepare This Week?

It was a good week here. Ordered a gun safe, a bunch of AK mags and some shelves for the garage. The gunsafe and shelves were planned, stuff we've been waiting to pull the trigger on for awhile. The AK mags were an impromptu buy based on an excellent price.

Added a few small things to the BOB. Need to get a machete and a mosquito net then it is good to go. Organized some stuff which was good. Split a bit of firewood.

Other than that not a lot happened. Thanksgiving ate up Thursday and Friday. This weekend we didn't do a darn thing which was really needed. Next week I am going to focus on getting some traction on the book. This month was nowhere near as productive as I wanted but given that weekends went to home improvement projects that was to be expected. Honestly we needed to get our residence set up a lot more than I need to finish a book. Hoping to get it done this winter.

Toying with the idea of putting together a nonfiction "best of the blog" type book. It would be a compilation of articles covering my foundational beliefs about different subjects such as weapons, gear, food storage, finances, fitness, insurgencies, etc all. Cost is TBD but would be in the McDonalds value meal to six pack of decent beer range. Does that interest anyone?

What did you do to prepare this week?

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Quote of the Day Wifey on Stocking Household Items

"I will conceed that sometimes it is helpful to have you. For example I forgot to buy any tin foil for thanksgiving but I have this crazy husband who stockpiles S&*T. Also there are times you go to the field that I do not go shopping for weeks."

-Wifey

Saturday, November 23, 2013

An Accident and a First Aid Kit Lesson

Not too long ago I had an accident. Was coming into the garage carrying something heavy and needed to move the garbage can back to clear room. With one hand I grabbed for it . The can's top was open and I caught my hand on a piece of plexiglass that was sticking out at an odd angle. Skewered my thumb pretty good in the process. By the time I pulled my hand back blood was pouring out pretty good. Applied pressure with my other hand. Got into the kitchen then grabbed the first piece of material I could see which was a washcloth. Stuck that over the cut and kept applying pressure to stop the bleeding.

By this point the cursing and commotion had brought Wifey into the kitchen to find out what was going on. Seeing me holding my thumb and (small amounts) of blood all over the answer was obvious. She asked what I needed her to get. I knew this was definitely not a band aid cut but also wasn't bad enough that it would not heal on it's own so I said gauze pads and tape.

Wifey went to the linen closet where the medical stuff ended up in the recent move in/ unpacking efforts. The stuff was in a cardboard box in no particular order. Eventually Wifey found some big wound dressings and vet wrap which was good enough. We got my cut wrapped up which took care of the pressing issue.

This accident made it pretty clear to me that we needed to move and organize the first aid stuff. I figured the kitchen was the logical place to keep first aid stuff. It is the place we are most likely to have cuts due to food prep and cooking. Also like most American homes the kitchen is the central, if not focal point of the house. Most specifically it is where the doors to the garage and back yard are.

Today I talked with Wifey to find a space in the kitchen (decisively her territory) where some first aid stuff could go. Thankfully our kitchen has a fair amount of cabinet space. She found a space for me to put some stuff. In that space I put the following stuff:
1 box bandaids (various sizes)
1 box 2x2 gauze
1 box 4x4 gauze
1 box 5x9 gauze pads (never know)
1 roll athletic tape
1 roll paper tape
Neosporin
Iso Alcohol
vet wrap

My purpose here was not to make an all encompassing first aid kit but set out the stuff to deal with realistic issues we are likely to face in our home, typically cuts and scrapes. The only thing I plan to add is an IFAK, or really a beefed up version of one along the lines of a CLS bag. 

In putting this stuff together it became apparent to me we do not have a good household first aid kit. We have a decent kit in my vehicle and a good one in the family hauler but it's pretty aparant we need a dedicated home kit. A kit like this or this would be good. We have the components but a nice put together setup would be handy in case I/ we need to grab something to run out to the yard, help a neighbor or whatever.

So we are better prepared for dealing with basic scrapes and cuts now. Also I put the rest of our stuff into a clear tub (vs a box) then after looking through it went to fill some small holes. So in terms of medical stuff it was a pretty productive day.

How is your first aid stuff organized?



Thursday, November 14, 2013

Cold Snap N Random Thoughts

In the last 3 days the temperature here has dropped about 20 degrees from High 70ish low 50ish to high 50ish low 30ish. Froze both nights. We have also had a cold run through the house. I seem to have caught it last. Feeling like doo doo.

It's max week for 5/3/1. Overhead pressed #130 which is a record. Also dead lifted 345 which is a true 1 rep max record. Might get to bench and squat but might not. Might just roll with formula max's from this months work as there will be no barn burners there.

The Crunch is coming along though not as fast as I would like. I'd love to have it for sale over the holiday season but January might be more realistic. There is movement though so that's something.

I changed up the War Belt yet again. Shifted my admin pouches to USGI canteen pouches which frees up 2 MOLLE rows. Really didn't lose much space in those pouches either as the canteen pouches extend past the MOLLE straps. This change lets me run a dedicated IFAK behind the last mag pouch. That got rid of the awkward horizontal zip pouch in front of my pistol which is good. Having the front of my hips very clear is a good thing. I'm much happier with the setup now. Have something else in mind for the weekend. Pics follow.
From left to right or since the pic is off top to bottom. Frag pouch that will hold compass and a couple small items. 2x HSGI double taco's. Tactical Tailor triple mag pouch. IFAK. 2x USGI canteen pouches. One will be an admin/ NOD pouch and the other will hold some go food. Water bottle pouch that holds .75 liter steel bottle. Would like to replace it with another bottle at some point. Mounted on that pouch is my Ontario RAT 3. Next is a Glock 9mm with TLR-1 in a Safariland 6285.
This system really opens up the front of the belt without sacrificing any pouches. The admin/ NOD and survival pouches are going to be pretty light anyway so the negligible space difference from the old pouches should not be an issue or is at least worth the trade off.


This weekend will also revolve around home improvement but it should not be too bad. That being said "It's a quick easy project" is somewhere between a banned phrase and a cue to laughter in our house.

So that's what is up here. Hope you all have a great day.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Veterans Day 2013

Well it is Veterans Day. Last night was pretty crazy in an adult way. By an adult way I mean Walker was coughing like crazy so he woke up very sad approximately 5 times. Princess woke up her usual amount of times AND when she was arisen by Walker's coughing/ crying. It's interesting that kids will scream to wake you up in order to say hello but absolutely hate when anyone wakes them up.

Today was Wifey's sleep in day (the day before was mine) so I had the kids this morning. We hung out and did our usual thing. Cooked some bacon and eggs on the cast iron frying pan. Eventually we got moving to Lake Charles to take care of several things. Ran some errands which needed running. Wifey wanted to go to Hobby Lobby so we went there. Interestingly also Walker has really wanted to go to "Hobbby Wobby" for reasons we are not clear on. He'd never been to one before so maybe he liked the name or it looked like a cool store or something.

Wifey had a great time checking out all the home decor stuff. She wants to re purpose a mirror we got for free and make a blanket for Princess. Good wholesome stuff. Eventually after considering different fabric's and paints n such we were ready to leave.

Personally I think our financial way forward is to open a sports bar gently veiled as a restaurant of some sort next to a hobby lobby (so kids, who are inevitably being watched by the guy while the gal shops, can hang out). There will be several TV's with all the games on as well as a big play place with video games, lego's as well as crayons with paper n such. There will be also be a gratis popcorn machine.The special will be a kids meal (or 2) and a pitcher of draft beer.

We went to lunch at  O'Charleys in Lake Charles more out of location and happen stance than anything else. When we were seated they asked if anyone was a veteran so I truthfully said yes. They offered 25% off the prime rib dinner or anything on the 9.99 page of the menu (that had a variety of nice offerings, a small steak, several chicken meals, a pot pie, fish and shrimp, etc) which was nice. I had the fish and shrimp which was quite good. We didn't plan anything around me getting a free meal but it was an unexpected surprise I was not going to turn down. The service was awesome, the food was great and it was quick which is nice with little ones. Overall the restaurant was way above the 'casual dining' bar while the atmosphere was still relaxed so it is a place we would definitely eat at again.

Next we went to Sam's Club. We got a whole lot of meat; 10 pounds or so each burger, chicken breasts, n pork chops as well as 2 whole chickens, 6# bacon and 4# sausage since we are doing the low carb thing. Depending on how we meal plan it's probably 3 weeks or so of meat. That stuff isn't so much preparedness food as trying to get the best deal on our everyday chow as is practical to make the cost of being low carb more reasonable. Honestly right now we have about as much meat in the deep freeze as I feel comfortable having without a backup generator and fuel to keep it cold for a month long disaster.

We also purchased a bunch of shelf stable stuff the kids like. Some pre packaged meals, fruit cups n such. Half will go for normal use to cover those times we cannot get home for a meal but do not really want to stop and the other half will get cached. Walker is at the age where he can biologically eat anything I do but anyone who has kids knows it doesn't quite work that way. However he will eat crackers and fruit cups so for a fairly short term plan stocking those make sense. Worst case they let us help transition him to other foods if things get really bad.

Got a big bag o disposable diapers for Princess. Since she usually wears cloth they are for the times Wifey has not got to laundry yet (it happens) or emergencies. 

Not much Veterans Day stuff going on here. Really it was just a bonus extra Sunday. Do not feel like rambling on about service and sacrifice and all that though I did a good one a couple years back. Honestly I am at the point in my life and service where this day can be whatever I want it to be. If anyone says I should do something else they will be throat punched.

Time for me to go to bed. Hope you all had a good Veterans Day.



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