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Saturday, May 30, 2009

Vermont Emergency Radio Network


The Vermont Emergency Radio Network (VTERN) is an alternate means of communication for people throughout the State of Vermont area during an emergency. In the event of a neighborhood or area-wide power, telephone or Internet failure, VTERN can keep you in touch. VTERN uses Family Radio Service (FRS) and General Mobile Radio Service (GMRS) radios on channel 1, no subchannel. FRS and GMRS radios are those little handheld walkie-talkie radios that family and friends use to keep in touch at
parks, on ski slopes and in malls. If there's an emergency, tune your radio to channel 1. VTERN may be your pipeline to emergency help and information. VTERN is self-activating and doesn't require any special training or equipment, other than an inexpensive FRS or GMRS radio. When other communication networks go down, or if you need to communicate outside and your cell phone's not working, just tune your FRS or GMRS radio to channel 1 and talk. VTERN works a little like a relay, with people passing information down the line. VTERN works on the keep-it-simple principle. To join the VTERN Listserv, follow the instructions on this page. VTERN is part of the Emergency Radio Network and National SOS Radio Network.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Frost warning tonight

There is a frost warning for tonight and tomorrow early morning. Please cover any tender plants you have outside.

Making a list

There are so many ways that you can prepare that I find it handy to make a list of things we need to do. Now if you're like me, your desk is covered with lists so I find it easier to make my prepping list online.

If you are a blogger, you have a very convenient way to do that. If you go into the customize section of your blog, you will see a way to "add gadget" and from there to add a list.

You can see ours here:

You have to scroll down and it's on the right. It's titled "Our list of things to buy/build for the future". As we think of something we feel we need to buy or build or acquire, I list it there. As we buy/build/acquire the item, I add an asterisk and move it to the bottom of the list. That way I have a running tally of what we have accomplished and what we still need to do. There's no way the list is going to get lost, torn, scribbled on, etc.

This way you have a goal that you can save for or work toward and it's easier to keep on track. Hope that helps!

Monday, May 18, 2009

How to make your own fire starters

This is a very easy way to start a fire. Take a cotton ball and cover it in petroleum jelly. Put a number of these into an old film canister. To start a fire, place two or three of these under the kindling in your fire pit and light.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Natural insect repellent

Make sure you use real essential oils not fragrance oils.

20 drops Eucalyptus oil
20 drops Cedarwood oil
10 drops Tea Tree oil
10 drops Geranium oil
2 oz. carrier oil ( such as Jojoba )

Mix together in a 4 oz. container. Apply to skin as needed avoiding the eye area. Keep out of reach of children. Test on a small area of skin for sensitivities . Experiment with different percentages of essential oil. This works well in a small spray bottle.

I have also been told that marigolds are insect repellents so you may want to try planting some throughout the garden. They also help ward off bunnies & deer.

Homemade salve recipe

It's always a good idea to know how to make your own healing concoctions from plants that grow around you. This is one of my favorites:

Plantain Salve

Fresh plantain leaves and flower stalks
Olive oil
Small jars, pots or tins

Pick five handfuls of fresh plantain leaves and flower spikes (around five full grown plants). Slice the plantain and place it in a stainless steel pot and barely cover with water (approximately 1.5 cups of water). Simmer gently for a half hour, then cover and let steep for an hour and strain out the medicinal "tea."
Over a very low flame, heat a cup of olive oil and 3 tablespoons of beeswax until the wax melts. Slowly pour in the tea and stir with a whisk. Pour into small jars; it will solidify as it cools.

Note: It is helpful to try a test first by pouring out a tablespoonful onto a cool dish to test the consistency as it cools. If the salve is too hard, heat it again and add more olive oil. If it is too soft, add more beeswax.

I found this recipe here:


It's a great salve for minor cuts and bruises.

Friday, May 1, 2009

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