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Thread: Called Packrat? Hoarder? PREPPER, please! Converting Chaos To Order-Pt1!

  1. #21
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    Bad news/sad news.

    I went to Family Dollar to pick up more tubs. They had been moved. And over to what looked like a close-out area. They did not have printed UPC code markers on the shelves, but instead had handwritten pricing on index cards. The selection was poor, some once available not present at all.

    Supply of larger tubs (and costlier ones located where they always had been.)

    Makes me wonder if Sterlite has phased out mfg of the size I love. Dollar General not long ago had them, more expensive, so I'll have to scope that out. Hoping they are NOT discontinued--but I can see why a mfg might retire that size and go for the bigger and more expensive size for the cost of labor and materials involved....perhaps selling in better numbers to customers who WANT big tubs in which they can throw a ton of stuff, not using them for neat and nifty sorting and storing, for which MANY might consider that size entirely too small.

  2. #22
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    Sue-Z-Q

    Great thread. We are so like minded it is scary. Do you believe in ESP or is it telepathy?

    Seems I'm longer in the tooth then you are, approaching the mid part - so that will be Ms LadyHawk to you! No DH in the picture. Not since Viet Nam. There are times I do envy those with DH's, but I've come to the realization not every woman will have a man in their life WSHTF.

    I've always felt there is a reason I've led the life I have. Maybe it's to impart the lessons, knowledge and skills I've acquired as a single woman prepper. I've walked miles in the shoes of these women having been a single parent juggling children, jobs (two full time), finances, while educating and instilling values and principals. Looking back, I wouldn't choose to repeat any parts of it, but I know those experiences were needed to make me who I am today. My motto will become my signature. "That which does not kill us makes us stronger. Nietzsch (Though I was brought to my knees several times.)

    Container organizing, but with a twist. At this stage of my life, not into bugging out or traipsing around in unfamiliar territory. Seems I was "gifted" into my current location and situation, as there is a wealth of raw resources, supplies and equipment for the pickings in a SHTF situation. So, I'll make my stand here, but it doesn't mean there isn't a Plan B.

    My container organizing addresses both. There are the card board boxes (file or copy paper type with lids). Those mostly contain already packaged supplies for SHTF. Cards, games and school supplies, paper, pens, stationary, wind up clocks and old calendar type things. The plastic totes are kinda color coordinated. Red = medical supplies, Blue = water, Green = garden, Tan = waste/septic, Grey and Clear everything else and all labeled on the outside.

    Like you, I generously use the Dollar Tree (where everything is a dollar and they are online and ship) shoe box clear totes. Then there are the 5, 3 and 2 gallon pails and buckets. I'm into the 3 gallon buckets for grains and stuff as being easiest to heft and sling around.

    The local True Value would run monthly specials on 32 gallon trash cans with wheels for $12 bucks each. These are great, can be lined with garbage bags, the ties looped and secured around the handle which is also used to lock the lid in place. http://housewares.hardwarestore.com/...an-604375.aspx I've accumulated about twenty and like you have taped white print paper marking the contents with (gasp) a black marker pen. Yes, I will get sheet protectors and redo.

    There are several cans that are strictly SHTF items like extra water pumps, propane regulators, hoses, electrical wire, duck tape, fittings and connections, those are sealed around the lid edges with duck tape. Only once in a blue moon do those need to be opened.

    Plan B is if there is a need to fall back, will do using the 1993 Dodge Ram Van (converted into a BOV with solar panels to run 12v refer, crock pots, lights and LP for cooking and heating.) I'm on craigslist looking for a trailer with ramp. That way I can roll the trash cans onto the trailer with other priority containers. Would love an enclosed trailer to pre-position and store, but it's about the $$$ as usual.

  3. #23
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    Oh yeah, ESP, great minds wallowing the same rut; cut from the same bolt of cloth; soul sisters...all that good stuff.

    Loved your sharing some of YOUR lil' tricks in this, L-H. It expands possibilities and helps others.

    I use boxes, too, now I'm "having" to more often since it seems that F-D and other places no longer have the 12 qt sterlite tubs. I would suspect that corporate bean counters are behind that...Not enough profit on that size, even if they flew off the shelves, compared to what they can get for a tub with a little more plastic and a helluva lot more retail price. Same with those drawer-type storage units. So it's been back to dumpster diving for gooooood boxes.

    Been doing some tweaking today with "core storage". When using cardboard boxes, I'm a biiiiig believer in lining the box with heavy duty garbage bag, putting stuff inside the bag inside the box, and THEN slipping the whole thing into another heavy mil garbage bag and snugging/securing it and stacking and labeling. Moisture barrier is extremely helpful for long term storage. It really works for stuff in core storage; ya know where it is, that it's protected well, leave it alone 'til you really need it, etc. Case lots work well in garbage bags/labeled, too, and stacked.

    I stopped taking jars of canned goods out of their boxes and putting them on pantry shelves quite awhile back. Oh, they look lovely racked up on the shelves. But it limits one. We had a good garden last year; I hadda buy jars. When removing new jars from the half-box most come in, I took strapping tape and wound it around the perimeter of the box, refilled it with jars of produce, and handled that way and boxed...man a person can stack those puppies and slap a label of what/what on the box. I even manage to open carefully enough to not disturb shrink wrap half-boxes of jars are shipped in for further stability. Beats heck out of handling individual jars, that's for sure. And space becomes a problem - so stacking boxes of canned goods one atop another in re-enforced boxes can help a lot when storage is at a premium.

    Love your posts; you quickly became a "must read" for this forum peer.

    Turned 61 in December.

    Read your accomplishments, Lady Hawk, and sounds to me like you can really compete in a man's world. So Lady Hawk is a great i.d. that kinda sez something about you, heh, heh.

    In retrospect I prolly should've signed on as Old Buzzard B*itch! LOL...
    Last edited by Sue-Z-Q; 02-27-2011 at 02:46 PM.

  4. #24
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    Sue-Z-Q - what a hoot that would be with the user name of Ole Buzzard B*itch. Folks would definitely pay attention. They already are anyway with Sue-Z-Q for your informative, insightful and humorous posts.

    I don't know if it's just me, but any time I see your user name searching threads, that damn song - like a jingle you can't get out of your head - Susie Q pops into my head. Aaahhhh! Make it stop! It's playing right now.....

    Oh Susie Q,
    Oh Susie Q,
    Oh Susie Q, baby I love you, Susie Q.

    I like the way you walk,
    I like the way you talk,
    I like the way you walk, I like the way you talk, Susie Q.

    http://www.lyricsfreak.com/c/creeden...revival/#share

    I'm into solar and wind and am off the grid. I do crock pot cooking, hold over from my travel days in the motor home. The counter then was set up with two pots and a bar to keep them in place. I'd put a roast in one and potatoes in the other and by the time I got to my destination, dinner. Kinda got into collecting them. I have two of the older ones that have inserts for baking a cake or bread. Crock Pot came out with a 2 pot server - then a 3 pot server

    http://www.nextag.com/crockpot-buffe...r/stores-htm .

    The 2 is now in the van and the 3 I use daily. I make a little extra change cooking dinners for a couple of workers nearby. Today will be Anasazi beans and ham hocks, saffron rice (when done sprinkle in peas and carrots) and cornbread (mixed with can corn and cheese). Sam's is closing out it's stock of 3 pots and has them priced at $45. I'm going to pick one up on Friday for use in SHTF.

    Can't believe how many dehydrators I find new (and used) in thrift shops. So, I've done tons of dehydrating. Solar loves dehydrators too! But canning??? It scares the bee gee's out of me. I've got all the equipment -2 Ball canners, one new and the other used, the book, the racks, the tongs, jar thing, funnels, jars galore and new seals and rings - got it! I've read the blogs and looked at U Tubes. I'm gearing up that this is the year I learn to can. Thinking about taking a class. Once I see it being done and do it myself, under supervision I should be good to go.

    So, your comments on not putting jars on shelf and keeping in box - check.

    "... When removing new jars from the half-box most come in, I took strapping tape and wound it around the perimeter of the box, refilled it with jars of produce, and handled that way and boxed...man a person can stack those puppies and slap a label of what/what on the box..." Got that part.

    "... I even manage to open carefully enough to not disturb shrink wrap half-boxes of jars are shipped in for further stability. Beats heck out of handling individual jars, that's for sure..." Not sure about this. Is this part about packaging/storage? Are these empty jars? Inquiring minds want to know.

    I enjoy your posts and obvious you are going to be my go to gal. You may just be the one that can teach this old dog some new tricks.
    Last edited by LadyHawk; 02-28-2011 at 06:12 AM. Reason: more emots
    "...Your most important survival tool is your brain -think!..."
    Rand of the Return of Planet X

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by LadyHawk View Post
    I don't know if it's just me, but any time I see your user name searching threads, that damn song - like a jingle you can't get out of your head - Susie Q pops into my head. Aaahhhh! Make it stop! It's playing right now.....

    Uh...yuh! I've liked Susan Songs - OH! Susanna that I played on one of those musical cardboard crank things back in the 1950's til my eldest brother disembowled it with a pocket knife. Been partial to the "Symphony for Susan" (Andy Williams?) and my REAL fave The Statler Brothers and "Susan When She Tried"....

    I'm into solar and wind and am off the grid. The 2 is now in the van and the 3 I use daily. I make a little extra change cooking dinners for a couple of workers nearby. Today will be Anasazi beans and ham hocks, saffron rice (when done sprinkle in peas and carrots) and cornbread (mixed with can corn and cheese). Sam's is closing out it's stock of 3 pots and has them priced at $45. I'm going to pick one up on Friday for use in SHTF. You are really with it, girl! I "lived" in a van enroute to MN and back when my mama died. More to prove that I COULD than to refrain from paying motel bills just to grab six hours' sleep.

    Can't believe how many dehydrators I find new (and used) in thrift shops. So, I've done tons of dehydrating. Solar loves dehydrators too! But canning??? It scares the bee gee's out of me. I've got all the equipment -2 Ball canners, one new and the other used, the book, the racks, the tongs, jar thing, funnels, jars galore and new seals and rings - got it! I've read the blogs and looked at U Tubes. I'm gearing up that this is the year I learn to can. Thinking about taking a class. Once I see it being done and do it myself, under supervision I should be good to go. Ditto, I have bought several brand spanking new dehydrators at Resale shops, and, also picked up a Quisenart food processor on the cheap.

    Canning is not hard at all. Uh...So Easy A Cave (Wo)man could do it. Truly you CAN can almost anything. As I've told people I've taught how to can over the years, 'You can can **** if you WANT to. It won't taste good - but it suuuuuure will KEEP!!!"


    So, your comments on not putting jars on shelf and keeping in box - check.

    "... When removing new jars from the half-box most come in, I took strapping tape and wound it around the perimeter of the box, refilled it with jars of produce, and handled that way and boxed...man a person can stack those puppies and slap a label of what/what on the box..." Got that part.

    "... I even manage to open carefully enough to not disturb shrink wrap half-boxes of jars are shipped in for further stability. Beats heck out of handling individual jars, that's for sure..." Not sure about this. Is this part about packaging/storage? Are these empty jars? Inquiring minds want to know. Okay, not much clarity in writing. Plastic is cheaper than cardboard, freight is shipped by weight, so whereas canning jars used to come in a cardboard box with flaps, nowadays they are a bottom half-box, jars are packed in at the factory, and they run 'em through a shrinkwrapping process. So that is how they are bought. I take a paring knife and score down the top of the heavy mil plastic lengthwise. At opposing corners diagonally, I score along the edge so I can remove the brand new jars easily. When I'm done and the canned jars have cooled (and I now leave rings on place to help secure the seal for longterm storage) I carefully repack them into the cardboard half-box that meanwhile I have solidified further with strapping tape. Then, I smooth the sliced plastic wrap into place like a 'top".

    I empty down boxes using home canned goods - and fill them right back up, too - by taking the clean jar from the dish drainer, putting on a brand new lid flat, then screwing on the rings. When I'm ready to can and need jars - ready and waiting. So the jars are safely stored empty in the half-boxes, too.


    I enjoy your posts and obvious you are going to be my go to gal. You may just be the one that can teach this old dog some new tricks. Woof! Woof! This ol' dawg learns something from everyone. It's why we are here...What ya give is what you also get, IMO.
    I keep extra rings and canning equipment in, what else, a tub!

  6. #26
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    Sue-Z-Que
    What do you think of those vaccum bags (space bags) for blankets, quilts, etc and stacking the flattened bags in bins? Got some as a gift and am not sure they'll work real well, stay flat, etc. We've been using bins for our Christmas decorations and Hubby's M&M collection and photos for years. Just need to get the rest of the house organized LOL. Have been divesting my self of extraneous "junk" over the last few months, 36 yrs marriage and two kids, still have lots of junk to get rid of. What size sterlite are you looking for? Got local store that carries a lot of different sizes. Maybe can come up with the ones you're looking for.

  7. #27
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    Thanks for the clarification. ....and there's that song again.
    "...Your most important survival tool is your brain -think!..."
    Rand of the Return of Planet X

  8. #28
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    Vacuum bags, yeah, loooooooove them! Even adore small ziplock bags (gallon) for storing some stuff. I have fought dust like none-other for about the last ten years because we're in an area chemtrailed almost 24/7 and everything even w/doors closed gets that fine talcum powder dust on it. Drives me batso. Tubs have been GREAT to store stuff dust-free. But I have come to use the space-bags and they really DO flatten out and stay that way.

    A YouTube of me wrassling one would probably be hilarious; I'd no doubt laugh at MYSELF! But I'll fold up a clean blanket, and get it smoothed into the bag, get down on it and squoosh the air out with body weight (don't always go for a vaccum cleaner because some of the bags I have aren't set up for that). And when no more air can come out, I'll zip it - and it STAYS that way, airtight and taking up sooo much less space. I forget what-all I've stored that way in the line of clothes - and stuff - some we wear, some put back for hard times, but it is AMAZING how much clothes can be packed into a dresser drawer by using the air-removal trick with bags.

    I'm gonna "tell on myself", too, but in the past if the "flat file" (round oak diningroom table) was a frickin' mess and I learned someone was coming to visit, I'd grab a tub, busily scrape stuff into the tub, snap a lid on and set it in a closet and out of sight - and after the company left - get around to sorting it. (Although at times it might be in the tub for 6 weeks before I even missed it, LOL.

    I like the 12 qt Sterlite size. Great variety in price for the exact same tubs. Family dollar had them for $2.50. Bought some last week on what looked like a Clearance Closing-Out Shelf for $3.50. Back when they were $2.50 at F-D Walgreen's had the exact same tubs for $7.50. There were places like W-G where they were rather pricey, but stocked, so I'll hafta do some "personal intel" and if they are no longer carried in those stores...I'll have a pretty good idea that Sterlite discontinued them to put production elsewhere. Being as plastic is a derivative of crude oil - as crude hits $100 a barrel (or more) plastic-wear will get more costly.

    I have stuff like cookbooks stacked in the length of the tub, then a few stuck in at the side where there's leftover space. I can move that stuff into garbage bag lined cardboard boxes. I have a ton of cookbooks - saving them not for ME but for he gals who face SHTF and need to learn how to cook and can't just hop on the internet to Cooks.com and get a recipe. IF you find that size in a chain type store, please announce where, in case others need it or I might find some when visiting Da Big City, LOL.
    Last edited by Sue-Z-Q; 03-01-2011 at 01:54 AM.

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