Monday, December 31, 2012

My Last Post....of 2012 !

Welcome to Frippery Farm : Alberto, Alice and Ana!
Who are they?
Check it out:
Alberto (the blond), Alice and Ana, all in a row

Alice has such a sweet face!

Ana checks out the fence

First meal here

Ana (the Diva of the trio) does not like us watching her eat!

We are selling the sheep and some of the peafowl.
I know, we are about to move and should be downsizing.
BUT, if you check the prices of alpaca, you know they are WAY expensive. In most localities the prices START at around $2000!
We got all three for less than HALF that!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Apocalypse Cookies!

Since I have decided that the 21st will be cookie baking day here at Frippery Farm, I figured I would invite everyone else to get in on the fun!
If the Apocalypse comes, you have cookies. If the Apocalypse doesn't come, you have cookies.
Either way, WIN!
So, post your favorite cookie recipe or just a picture of the cookies you baked tomorrow on your blog or facebook.
Share the cookies, share the love!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

12 * 21 * 2012 The Elephant in the Room

A couple of folks have dropped me an email or two asking what I think of the "Mayan Doomsday" scheduled, supposedly, for the 21st.
I really don't have much of an insight here, folks! I think on the 21st, we will see or hear of a lot of idiots doing some very stupid and foolish things. Some of the idiots may harm themselves or others doing said foolish things in some twisted belief that what they are doing will somehow *save* them or loved ones from the "Doomsday", or at least spare them the pain of enduring it.
I think some foolish people have sold their future financial well being to buy over priced bunkers and supplies. Some of them will hang on to their stuff for when it gets really bad, others will compound their foolishness by selling their supplies at fire sale prices.
On the 21st I will be baking cookies to hang on the tree.
My heart hangs heavy because of the recent tragedy at the Sandy Hook Elementary School.
Perhaps this IS the end of the world, or perhaps it already ended...and we are just sitting here among the ashes, deluding ourselves into believing that the end is yet to come.
I want to believe that people are generally good, but every day, I find fewer reasons to feel that way.
Everything just seems broken. Broken in a way that can not be repaired. Can't be repaired by education or religion or medicine or by thinking positive thoughts. Just damn broken.
We put armed guards in museums, but not in schools to protect our children.
We pump vaccinations with known dangerous ingredients into infants, refuse to allow parents to discipline their children and dose them with psychotropic drugs when they "act out" by not being compliant at the local "government indoctrination center"
We eat foods that are pumped through and through with petro-chemicals, hormones, drugs, altered DNA and then wonder why so many of our children have psychiatric disorders and serious life-threatening illnesses.
My late father once told me that he believed we owe our children three things....
Unconditional Love, Unconditional Acceptance and to teach them to THINK FOR THEMSELVES.
By not providing our children with pure water and pure food...unaltered by the swill of the chemical cocktail that inundates corporate agriculture these days, we are handicapping our children and taking from them the ability to think for themselves, as all that chemical crap is known to cause changes in brain functions.

So, there's where my head is today.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

*Experts* and Preppers

Patrice Lewis over at Rural Revolution posted a link to this article: Doomsday Preppers Are Socially Selfish .
Read attention to what this *trained professional in the field of emergency management* has to say about preppers in general and the Doomsday Preppers specifically.

A few quotes, emphasis is mine:
"And guess what!  You can get your very own Prepper score!  The survey asks how much food and water you have stored away, AND whether you have a renewable food or water supply. Do you have a bunker, can you generate your own electricity, how many firearms do you own, do you have items for bartering – they recommend silver as the more tradable commodity. (Based on their criteria, I could only survive 1-2 weeks on my own with no outside help – and without helping anyone else.)"
So a TRAINED PROFESSIONAL only has 1 to 2 weeks of food and water stored?
The mind boggles.
She goes on:
"You might wonder why someone like me, who has been in the business of encouraging disaster preparedness for a very long time, is so critical of people who are doing just that. It’s because they are being socially selfish – preparing themselves and the hell with everyone else.  Instead of spending time and energy making changes that would benefit the larger community, in their very narrow focus of loyalty they are more concerned about themselves."

What!? Did she even WATCH the show? The majority of the preppers profiled involve friends, family, neighbors and many even strive to educate the general public on the benefits of preparedness!
Kellene Bishop, the preparedness *foodie* runs her own website, makes videos, gives self defense classes for women, firearm training for women and teaches classes (in her locality) on food storage and cooking with food storage.
Other preppers profiled have youtube channels, blogs, websites, books, etc.
Not good enough, apparently, for this *trained professional*.
So what does SHE do?
Her little blurb of a resume:
I am an emergency management 'practitioner' on a university campus. I want to say that right up front so as not to confuse this blog with the 'academic' side of higher education that Jayne Abraham will be blogging about. She'll tell you all about how to get an emergency management education; I'll tell you about practicing emergency management on campus. I think what I do is a lot more fun. (sorry, Jayne!)

Higher education campuses are a hotbed of activity these days. No longer are they just cloistered halls of academia!

The number of campus emergency managers is exploding - many of them are arriving with a "formal" education instead of years in field response. Higher education campuses are the venues that embrace new ideas and technology. This is where social networking evolved and changes almost daily. This is where students pass around the H1N1 influenza virus playing 'beer pong'.

Getting my stats out of the way: I have been in emergency management for almost 20 years with local government, a national lab and for the past four years with the University of California at Davis. Not too much field response experience, but I do have a lot of letters after my name (MS, CEM, CBCP). I have publications, training, conference workshops, offices and all that on my resume. If you are really, really, truly interested, let me know and I'll send it to you.

Meanwhile - I have lots and lots of opinions that I am more than willing to share. This should be fun. :-) 

So....she hasn't actually had to manage an emergency, she just knows how to by virtue of her education.
That's like all those people that have never had kids telling parents how to best raise their children!

Look, I know two people that are *experts* in Emergency Management and have educations comparable or exceeding the person that wrote that article.
One has about a months worth of food and water, no bug out bags, lives in area ripe for social breakdown and chaos and near military targets in a non-sustainable home. A two day power outage sends this person to the nearest hotel with power and room service. This person coordinates emergency management response on a FEDERAL level. They get to disaster areas AFTER a disaster has occurred.

The other was a prepper BEFORE getting degrees in emergency management. They have a gun and ammo collection that puts any other prepper (including the ones seen on t.v.) to shame. They have several bug out bags, cached in different locations and always, but ALWAYS has one with them. If the power goes out, they can live for months, if not YEARS without it. This person also has combat experience, self-defense training and is an avid hunter. They own a *bug out location* in a remote area and have equipped it with everything they will need for a minimum of 5 years. This person does emergency management planning for cities, counties, hospitals, universities and localities in disaster prone areas as a private consultant. They have lived through many of the major disasters in the US in the past 10 years (including Katrina).

Which expert do you think has been of most benefit to their clients/employer(s)?
The one working the federal level decides who gets what AFTER the hurricane, the flood, the blizzard, the earthquake, etc.They decide (sometimes weeks or months later) who gets the funds, donations, medical supplies, housing (emergency or otherwise) allocated to their particular agency.
The one on local level teaches the people in those localities what to do BEFORE a disaster strikes, what to do DURING the event and what to do IMMEDIATELY afterward to preserve human life and protect property.

There is NO substitute for experience, is there?

Back to the original article...
I do not think I have ever met a prepper that was not willing to share their knowledge and/or expertise and experience with someone else. Consider all those folks that violated the first rule of OPSEC to share their knowledge and techniques on Doomsday Preppers!
I, personally, want the general public more aware. I want everyone to have preps and be as self-sufficient as possible.
The more people that are prepared means fewer people suffering, fewer people dying, fewer people getting desperate and stealing, etc.
I share here on my blog, but I also try to educate my friends, family and neighbors.
I feel sad for the lady that wrote the article. She really has No Clue.