Friday, June 29, 2012

72 Hour Pack.... Day 5.... I'm not as enthusiastic now.....

I'm in... gather a few things at a time for the 72-hour pack... mode.  I found two pairs of little girl panties that are kinda... baggy.  Not so great for every day.... perfect for the 72-hour pack.  I put a tub in the garage and I'm just heaving things into it.  A perfectly good but not often worn vest and hooded sweatshirt.... in.  Two rain ponchos from the camping box.... in.  An old pair of tennis shoes and some socks.... in.  I'm discovering a 72-hour pack is quite similar to a search and rescue pack.  A whole lot of stuff in as small a space as possible.

My theory is I can buy a thing or two as I shop and have a complete kit by the end of summer.... that's my theory.  I need a lot of things in multiples of 5.... whistles, flashlights, mre's..... Flashlights.... good ones.... are pricey.  Whistles I'm assuming I can find in the dollar row at Target.  Actually quite a bit of stuff can probably come from the dollar store.....

I realized I had no two-inch squares in my first aid kit in the car.... and they are so good for bloody noses at baseball.... so I bought some and some non-latex gloves.... thinking they would be good for the first aid kit and the 72-hour pack.

Then, as I was leaving the store, I called Elle and she informed me she, on her wild medical supply purchasing rush of 2011, bought several thousand pairs.  So I will get some of hers and return mine.

And that's where I am so far on the 72-hour pack.


Is it wrong that I suddenly really like Miller 64??

What it looks like now.....

Funny story about the pink rug.... so I tore out the old carpet and hauled in the brown rug I had carefully washed and spread on the porch to dry.... then I left for the weekend.  I came home Sunday night to a house that smelled.... awful.  Just awful.  Like, "we have to move" awful.

I had one little corner of carpet that was still intact so I tore it out hoping that was the problem.... in the process I stepped on the brown rug.  And realized.  It.  Was.  The.  Problem.

Hot has a theory. He thinks the neighbor's tom cat came over and sprayed it while it was on the porch.  I have no idea how I managed to carry it in the house without noticing.... although I did use a drag method and not actually hug it to my body... that's my excuse.  

So here it is.... carpet free and mostly scrubbed.

We have gone back and forth about refinishing vs carpet.  I don't know what to do.  Here's the challenge to refinishing... this strip of subfloor between the kitchen and 

Also... changed out the entertainment center.... Elle... this is what I am debating painting....

Ugly former entertainment center... worth spray painting?  Turn into kid kitchen?  Send to donation pile?

Keep it like this??

Thursday, June 28, 2012

What do YOU do when you hubby goes out of town????

June 8, 2012.  This is my house on a typical Friday night....  BUT.  This was the first time EVER that I'd been home overnight BY MYSELF.  No husband.  No kids.  Hot was on a fire in Melstone and the kids were at Grandma & Grandpa's because we had no daycare. 

And then this happened...

And oh my HELL.... is that DIRT?  Sifty silt.  Horrified.

Good bye pink carpet..... goodbye.....

Holy PEE spots.  Ack.  Ew.  Ugh.  Yes, I washed the clothes I was wearing with color-safe bleach and a double rinse.  And a discovery..... there were spots in places the dog hasn't been... like under furniture.  So, possibly, he has been, in his senile way, marking his territory.  UPDATE:  Dog has not peed on floor since carpet came out.  It is a MIRACLE.  I am no longer going to put "designer of doggy diapers" on my resume due to my stylish manufacturing of adult undergarments from ace bandages and baby diapers....  Now who wants the size 1 Target diapers I have left over?

Here's one of those "Oh shit, what have I done" moments. 

The brown in the middle isn't bad... not loving the reddish stuff they painted the edges with... and all the white stuff seems to come off with scrubbing....

Stay tuned..... there is more to the story.....

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Wild Fire: Sentimental

Well.... let's start with some general organization of sentimental items.......

What is sentimental to you?  I don't know.  Some general categories:  photos, framed pictures, scrapbooks, journals, baby stuff, letters, family furniture, jewelry, heirlooms, collectibles.

I can tell you what is sentimental to me:  photos, journals, kid stuff, baby books, love letters/notes, a small collection of randomness:  two September figurines, some 2 dollar bills, my jewelry, a few small antiques. 

Add in from Hot:  his grandfather's rocking chair, arrowheads, & coins.  The grass basket & doll.  And, of course, his antler collection.

So the first step is to identify, find and list what is important to you.  Go room to room.

I'm not going to go into specific organization techniques in much detail... although it would be really good if you were already a master organizer....  If you are completely at a loss.... start by gathering like with like.  Assign a tub to each family member and gather any sentimental momentos....  I have one for each kid but need to do better for the adults.  Get all the photos in one place.  Scan.  Scan.  Scan.  Split the photos into a box that goes with you and a box that is scanned and can burn.  Actually.... I confess...... ALMOST all of mine can burn.... but I do need to grab the box of negatives in the safe in the garage.  And the video tapes (that really should be changed to digital).  I am, at heart, an archivist.... I do believe in maintaining the native media source.  This means I keep negatives even if the pictures are scanned.  And I will keep the video tapes even after they are converted to digital.... so those things should be either in our safe or in my sentimental tub.... in a perfect world.

So.... I'm going room by room looking for sentimental items and make a hard-copy list of things to take.  I'm also doing some photo-documentation for insurance purposes.  Not that I have anything of huge value.  My mother-in-law loads all of her dansko/keen shoes in a basket and takes them when she evacuates.  The collection is truly could NOT be replaced.  And involves some cash outlay.  So if any of you have fur collections lurking in your closet... document away. 

Here's what I found in the dining room.....

A picture of me with Niki that I need to make sure I scanned.

A little creamer set that was my grandmothers.... definitely not an emergency grab but something I would save if I had a day to pack up.  Also the horned door knocker..... from Hot's family.

A lovely framed poster but not pricey or particularly sentimental.... on the one-day list.

Another lovely piece of art by Mike Capser.... not sure of the value.... framed... maybe a couple of hundred dollars.... again... the one-day list.

This shot shows Hot's hat collection that has migrated to the outside of the coat closet.... I put the hanger up and he was so excited, "YEAH!  I LOVE this.  What a great idea.  Why didn't you do this before?"  My response.... I hate it.  It is completely a compromise of marriage.  My purse is in the closet and my cell phone is on the shelf.  These are things that are important to grab... definite 5 minute evacuation items.

There are also some deer antlers on the table.  All antlers are on the one-day list as far as I'm concerned... I may get debate about that from Hot.  Not much of value in the closet... maybe Hot's hunting boots?

The kitchen contains only a few sentimental items..... an antique liquor thing on top of the fridge and two pieces of serving silver from Hot's family.  All on the one-day list. 

Ok... I'm getting tired.  I'll work on the laundry room and bathroom tomorrow night.  Then on to the exciting living room and bedrooms.... oh... then the garage... that will take some time.

Pondering the Possible Emergencies....

So.  72-hour packs.

There are different needs for different emergencies.  Wildfires are location-specific.  I can survive with a credit card.  But an earthquake requires a true survival pack.  And a middle-of-the-night house fire is a different thing altogether.

So.  Step 1. 

Let's list our possible emergencies.

House Fire
Power Outage

We won't go into active shooter, explosions or terrorist attacks.

What other emergencies would you like to cover?

Emergency Packs


It is f-ing cray-zay around here. 

Fire.  Fire.  Fire. 

Daycare is evacuated.  I haven't seen Hot for days. 

So.  I'm thinking.

72-hour packs are a hot topic in my world these days.... at work and at  home. 

So we are going to do a project.

Who is with me?

Monday, June 18, 2012

7 Word Memoirs

This concept has been around a long time.  The 7 word memoir concept.

Here's my latest:

Chubby girl wearing muck boots, running wildly.

Friday, June 08, 2012

Memorial Day

So I've already shared our last trip to Fairmont.

We had planned to head to Chico and spend a day in the park but the weather was just COLD.  Snowy.  So on Thursday I called the hotel and snagged a room for two nights.  I did something called the FAMILY FUN PACKAGE and I recommend it.

We loaded up on junk food and snacks Friday night and got a tank of fuel.  I packed things up and piled it by the door.  I was, seriously, afraid to load the snack bag for fear of it freezing solid overnight.  Do you know what a mess a frozen juice box makes?  Uh-huh.  Hear me now.

We took our time Saturday morning.  Tidied the house, did some laundry, and finished some things that needed doing.  We got to Fairmont around 2 or so, checked in, and hit the pools.  In the snow.

Turns out some other folks had "get out of town" plans as well.... we ran into SARAH P.  Well.... I wouldn't have known but she recognized my kids.  So we sat in the play area and visited for a while.  I wish she lived in Helena because that girl is FUNNY.  Her husband thought we were weirdos.  He might be right.

Part of the family fun package is 4 1/2 day water slide passes.  So the kids took advantage... although the place was booked so they had to stand in line.  Not something my off-season traveling kids are really ok with but they made it work.

Fairmont has 2 hot pools and 2 warm pools... one each inside and out.  We took advantage.

I packed bagels, deli meat, cheese, tortillas, microwave mac-n-cheese, pizza roll ups, egg rolls, mozzarella sticks, hot dogs, soup, crackers & squeezy cheese, graham crackers, marshmallows, chocolate bars, hot cocoa, wine, chips, apples, cantaloupe, carrot sticks, sugar peas & anything else that seemed microwave-safe or picnic-oriented.  

We never did get to picnic or play mini golf.  The weather was just too wet and cold.  But we had a fine time writing our names on crackers with squeezy-cheese and watching dual survivor during rest time.

I've determined that bringing food is the key.  The hotel encourages it and we just weren't up for driving into any of the surrounding towns for dinner.  We ate in the restaurant a few times but, honestly, the prices are significantly higher than last time (summer season maybe?) and the food is fine but not that great.  And who wants to put on real clothes when you can lounge in sweats and eat carrot sticks in front of the tv?

We almost ordered a movie one night but realized it was $12.95.  For a movie in a hotel.  When they have more than 5 channels on the regular tv.  We watched more dual survivor and everyone read their books for quiet time.

Bugsy fell asleep in the pool.  Don't worry... I was holding her.  She napped for a long time while we both turned into prunes.  Then while daddy & the big kids had quiet time we went on an adventure.  They have a play area with a play kitchen and things.  And we looked at the gift shop and sat by the big fireplace and looked at all the art displays in the hallway.  Nice to sneak in a little one-on-one.

The kids were in heaven to have daddy in a pool.  They did lots of "swimming lessons" and shark attacks and games and races.  All three kids have improved their confidence in the pool.  Me?  Still don't like to get my face wet.

We stopped at the fish hatchery on the way home and got home fairly early on Monday.  Unpacked in a clean-enough house (the advantage to having all Friday evening to pack and Saturday morning to tidy) and made some dinner and lounged.

Sweet loved the animals....

Wow.... who parted Bugsy's hair like that?

Tuff with two of the three little white goats.... they named them again.  Apple.  Uh-oh. and the third was a toss up.  I voted for Goatules or Goatini but I think they went with Goat.

Poolside.  Inside.  I had a few before that were even cuter but my camera lens was steamed up so they are foggy.... quality photographer am I.

Tuff giving Bug a swim lesson....

I hope the fashion police aren't around.....

Thursday, June 07, 2012

She hates this picture..... it is TOTALLY coming out at prom time.....

My dear girl with her Flat Stanley.  She's very embarrassed by this picture.  Her Auntie and Cousin say, "Cool chicks heart Stihl."

Wednesday, June 06, 2012


Nothing says "Spring in Montana" like gale-force winds..... summer has been a little slow the last few weeks so we are making the most of spring.....

This is after we blew out the cheap kite and I had to dig the good kite out of the back of the barn......

Nice boots....

Just to prove we got it airborn.....

Tuesday, June 05, 2012

Park Lake

On May 20th we went for a drive up to Park Lake.

Dude casts like his mother.  Actually..... I got a few pretty hot casts in with the old spin rod.  Enough to make my husband remember why he married me.  Ok.  That's not true... he married me for my fly casting.... but a nice spin cast is still a resume builder.

This one has some pretty good concentration.  And a rocking Barbie rod.

Chilling after lunch.  Fashion is goal one.

Speaking of casting like her mother..... I felt like someone should yell "fore" every time.  She has no hook.... just a lead sinker on her line.  Which, of course, means she scares the fish away wherever she goes..... but better than than hooking a casual bystander with every cast....

See that log behind her?  That became the potty chair log.  Ahh.... potty-training in the great outdoors.  One trip to the camper toilet (past some very scary red neck dogs) was enough.... she said she'd rather hold it.  So we made our own.  And, yes, she pooped.  Was that TMI?  I did what every good camper should do and covered it up....  So does everyone else live in mortal fear of dropping their sunglasses down a port-a-potty style outdoor toilet?  No?  Just me?  Ok then.

Team B:  Happy after lunch.  We had roast chicken breast and cheddar on bagels, veggie-chips, carrots, chocolate chip cookies and some Easter candy from the freezer.  Granola bars and pretzels for the drive home.