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Only 4 months left in 2014, and summer is nearly over. :Bawling: So much to do before winter hits, and so little time to get it all done! What is on your to-do list for September? I know my list is a long one, between jobs that have been ongoing all summer and more prepping for winter before the rainy season hits.

Are you feeling overwhelmed by all that you need to do? Try breaking the big jobs down into small bites, baby steps, and set a goal of doing just one thing each day that improves your overall preparedness. In 30 days, that's 30 steps closer to your goals! For those of you familiar with Flylady for household organization and cleaning, you can do something similar with your prep goals. Of course it doesn't work for things like canning up a glut of garden produce, but many jobs can be tackled in 15 minute increments. You can do almost anything for 15 minutes, and if you're like me, once you actually get started on a job, you'll stick with it for longer.

So, join us in posting what you're doing each day to improve your preps, post your to-do lists and tell us how you're doing on them, and just join the conversation between friends here. This is a great group, very encouraging when you hit a rough patch, ready to celebrate with you, cry with you, and teach some neat tips and tricks along the way! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #2
My September To-Do List:

1. Jury duty - remember to call the jury line as needed.
2. Fix framing nailer - still can't figure out why it's not working.
3. Put chain on saw and cut up the dead falls in woods.
4. Rebuild smaller woodsheds to improve capacity and get a permanent roof on the larger woodsheds.
5. Haul and stack firewood to finish out this winter's supply and get at least half of next winter's under cover.
6. Rinse out the caged water totes and fill with potable water.
7. Clean out the 55 gallon water barrels thoroughly and fill. Bonus points for constructing barrel stacker and plumbing them together!
8. Keep the pool open as long as the weather is good, use for daily water aerobics. If the weather turns, winterize pool or take down.
9. Set bricks in sand to expand and finish back patio.
10. Build new steps and small deck on front of house.
11. Rebuild front of pumphouse and install better door.
12. Have Abby help me finish roof on barn shed and add run-in on the back for horse, add siding to lean-tos.
13. Continue rehabbing raised beds in the garden, transplant more strawberries, raspberries, currants, walking onions and garlic.
14. Root tomato cuttings and pot up into large pots for winter.
15. Buy a 6 month supply of solar salt for water system.
16. Flush the hot water heater thoroughly and turn back on.
17. Call VFD again to see what happened to my application.
18. Finish getting Abby's dreds de-tangled.
19. Cover tomatoes if it looks like frost, pick green tomatoes if if looks like a hard freeze is on the way.
20. If we get a killing freeze, dig dahlias and glad bulbs.
21. If I run out of other things to do on this list :rolleyes:, start building my greenhouse. Have everything I need for it and help on hand, just have so many other things to do!

Well, that's a list longer than hours in the whole month, I'm sure, lol. I'll just do as much as I can and be happy with whatever that is. 50% would be awesome!
 

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My first time joining the prep journal and to do list :)

1. Take inventory of my food preps
2. Plant spinach and turnips
3. Fix roof to the house ( started leaking last night during a bad storm)
4. Fill holes in my food prep for baking season
5. Fix riding lawn mower
6. Fix push mower
7. Fix weedeated
8. Tune up DD's truck
9. Have DD take her drug & alcohol test so she can get her learners permit
10. Obtain a physicians desk reference guide
11. Add to my water prep
12. Clear the a line to put up a fence
13. Save money in order to buy fence and posts
14. Put up a clothesline
15. Hang clothes up vs. Using the drier ( use $ saved on the electric bill to buy fence)
16. Defrost 1 of my freezers
17. Stock up on soap
18. Find an older dutch oven.....if not then buy a new one
19. Take scrap metal off
20. Make a decision to have surgery or not (to remove spleen)
 

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1/2 bubble off plumb
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September!!?? :shocked::shocked:

Well...I don't know what to do this month....
DH is almost done with his resume, so our future here is shaky. So I think I'll just fly by the seat of my pants this month (like that's any different then any other month, lol)

Took the kids to the county fair yesterday. Never took them to our's before....I've never been to ours before! It was very different then the one I went to as a kid.....I grew up in the "big city". There were many more barns of animals, fewer "display" barns....less rides (yeah) and just as much food. We splurged and ate dinner there and took the kids to their first demo derby. They loved it :)

We did run into an old friend there. He use to work with DH, his wife still works there (love her!) Anyways, she is a "safe person" people talk to at work because she doesn't share anything she hears (and she is in a position to hear things). Long story short, looks like lots of people are PO'ed with what's going on and LOTS of people are leaving. Her hubby mentioned that their he has put in a request for an engineer at his job. If he get's to get one, he'll let DH know. Sounds like our buddy might be the one doing the hiring and he knows what DH does.....might be a great fit - and would keep up here :) Only time will tell.

DH and I might head to McD's today (to get to a quiet, less distracting place) to finish off his resume.

Need more wood (if we are staying here through winter). Need to rent a splitter to split what we have....that's on this month's to-do list.
 

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Could probably do pages of to-do but will hit most important.....wood for the winter. Ordered so need to call the guy again as he had promised it several weeks ago but was having dump truck troubles.

Clear garden and work in manure. Neigbor has tons, literally, and will load our spreader up with his bobcat. Rescue the tomato clips we tried this year....really love them and had much higher yields with no more tomatoes sprawling all over the ground.

Re-evaluate seed varieties I tried this year. Save flower seeds. Compost to lily beds. Hope we get more rain as vetch just sitting there waiting to sprout

Clean chickenhouse and butcher the old hens as new ones starting to lay well.

Clean and organize greenhouse. Gets to be a garden catch-all in the summer and way tooooo hot to work in there. Also re-do back wall plastic as cut a wee bit to short around window and pulling loose no matter how much tape we put on it.

Final weeding of strawberries and cover with Remay for winter. Proven to increase yields by up to 60% and proven by us in past.

Final mulch around fruit trees

Keep on prepping.

Do some caulking and weather tightening around windows. Last winter was way too cold in here. Maybe that film for windows would be a good idea.
 

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Already working on one big one - straightening up the pantry in the basement! Most of our food is stored there. Trying to make room for all the different pickles I've put up lately. Pulled out two old cases - one sweet and one dill. Made DH try them. Out they go! They are at least 4 years old. The sweet ones were too sweet and too soft and the dills were too salty and too soft. The only sweet ones we like now are B & B and I'm using a different recipe for the dills so not so much salt. Also not processing any of the pickles so they should stay crispier. Just using hot jars, hot brine, and hot lids and turning them upside down to seal.

We also have to get our last cord of wood delivered. We have company coming this weekend and then again in about 10 days. Might try to do wood in that 10 days.

Finally finishing the tub and surround project but that report will have to wait untilI have more time!
 

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My list makes me tired thinking about it!

Continue harvesting garden including digging potatoes. Get covers out to protect sweet potatoes from early frosts. Plant lettuce, radishes and turnips. Work on moving wood from behind garage either to burn pile or to dump. Pray handyman shows up and will do work needed on house. Harvest flower seeds and green bean seeds.

Go thru OTC supplies and fill in where needed to get thru the winter. Check food pantry to be sure we're set for the winter. I know we need meat and have been avoiding buying due to prices. I just need to bite the bullet and spend what I need to so we have meat in the freezer for the winter.

Get all trash we cleaned out of garage to the curb for trash pickup. If garbage men refuse to take everything, make arrangements with gs to bring his pickup and do a dump run. Finish cleaning/organizing the garage.

Go thru all storage in laundry room, clean and eliminate stuff.

At end of September do 9 month average of budget to see where we are for the year.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
CancerSurvivor, Finally, someone who makes more ambitious lists than I do, lol. I LOVE IT! Be sure to keep posting on your progress - I'm looking forward to reading more. :)
Jen, yes, really....SEPTEMBER!!! I'm so not ready for summer to end. Fingers crossed that your dh is able to find a good, local job. Working with someone he knows well would be awesome. :)
Mutti, I'm so looking forward to eventually having a greenhouse. You have a very ambitious list, too. :)
Cindy, can you turn the soft pickles into relish? I did that with my nasty soft dills - added sugar a bit at a time to the brine until they turned into sweet dills, then drained and ran through the food processor. Made passable sweet pickle relish for tuna salad, chicken salad, etc.
Ann, your list makes ME tired, too...but then, so does mine, lol. Just the garden jobs on both our lists could be a month's worth alone.

So far today, I've finished weeding out the old walking onion and garlic bed. I have a ton of tiny garlic to plant back after I add compost to the soil. Then I need to water the bed thoroughly, plant a fall carrot crop and cover the bed with large sheets of cardboard to keep the soil moist until the carrots sprout. I plan to scatter the seed over the entire bed, hence the need for large sheets of cardboard. I have been saving the box from my new pressure tank, just for this.

I've also done my water aerobics and pool maintenance, and worked on clearing the rust out of the pipes. Abby's doing her laundry and cleaning her room, and then I plan to work on her dreds again. If I'm still energetic enough (didn't sleep well last night), I need to pull up the bricks and level the ground for the patio. Or, I might just take a nap. :)

updated to add: Didn't get to work on Abby's hair - she fell asleep at 8pm, not feeling great tonight. She did help me with moving compost to the future carrot bed, while I weeded all around the next raised bed ( a major job), weeded part of that bed, worked on training the Himalayan blackberries to climb over a curved cattle panel, and did another 20 minutes of swimming. Didn't work on the patio or take a nap, but I'm still finishing the last couple loads of laundry before I call it an early night, too.
 

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I am hoping since this is National Preparedness Month to do something everyday in my preps, today got a tub to hold the sleeping bags and new air mattress. Don't want bugs in the bags or dirt when we go camping or need them for company if the SHTF! Used the bags and needed a new mattress when we went to DD to spend the night, got the tub on the way home. I have big plans for this month...we shall see!! Love reading about everyone's projects!
 

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OH! Dear Me......I am a tired puppy. And, I am back on the heating pad!!

Went to the new farm.....worked like fiends.

Took the Border Collies, this time.... they were not thrilled. They were especially not trilled, when we took them to a new Vet to get all their shots. That was insult to injury.

We had a big burn pile, so we lit it Saturday, and had to stay with it for several hours... We were so hot. The weather plus the fire..... no breeze......WHEW! But, perfect day for burning.

I painted for hours and hours. Dh changed out electrical switches, mowed and lot of other stuff!

Back to work today...UGH!

I have a pot of Chicken Broth, I need to can this week.

Need to get Flu shot.

Have another B-day cake this week and several next week.

Jen - I am glad the frosting was a huge success!

Off and running.... have a Blessed day!
 

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Was watching the news last night and a Korean prisoner said he had to work 8 hours a day/6 days a week as an agricultural worker as hard labor. I turned to DH and said "He's got better work hours than you!!"

DH is working 12-16 hour days, and for right now, 7 days a week, at least until harvest is done (mid-Dec). Sigh. Makes a lot of work for all of us. I don't think we'll get our first frost this month, so garden cleanup can wait a bit, but I have a lot of harvesting of my own to do.

I need to get some winterizing done, too. Pigs need to be taken to the locker. Best get busy - they're not gonna get done with me playing on the computer.
 

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Okay you "Southerners"...you can come and take you heat and humidity back!! This "Northern Girl" had to turn the a/c unit on at 7 am....just so I could breath and stop sweating!!

DH and I moved our BOB's yesterday (despite the heat and humidity). They are now by the door in the garage verses hanging in the basement with pile of junk all around them. We could actually get them out now without the assistance of a small army. Of course this meant we first had to clean up a section of the garage.....a section that hasn't been touched in 5 yrs! Our wood in now sorted a bit and re-organized. We had no idea what all we have in those piles....lots of 2x4's, reclaimed lumber, MDF :shrug:!!??, so forth and so on. Now...to deal with the pile of junk in the basement. My goal is to start getting loads to Goodwill....in the event we have to move.
 

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MGM - those pickles were just too nasty to use for anything! I tried putting them in three garbage bags and the vinegar ate through all three!! Ended up in the compost - well covered. I just hope they don't stink! I have some dill relish that is much too dill. When I open a jar, I'm going to have to mix in some sugar to make it edible.

Everyone pray to the plumbing gods today!! DH will be putting the last bathtub fixture back on and turning on the water today. That man can fix most anything but plumbing is his albatross!!

TDD - what didn't the dogs like about the new place?

Yes, Jen, they can take this heat and humidity back!! DH turned off the air when he left at 6. I'm getting ready to turn it back on. And we were doing so well on the electric bill!! :(
 

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I love September and October but they always goes too fast. I like to do a lot of outside work to soak up as much fall as possible. I cleaned up some Russian Sage that was hiding the mums I planted from cuttings off the mums that survived last winter. Made a big pile of kindling from the twigs and branches that were in the yard. Weeded the strawberries and watered the dill transplants and pumpkins.
I want to save some zinna and marigold seeds; they are so beautiful this year. Master Gardeners have a perennial swap on Thursday that I would like to attend, if I find time to pot 6 perennials to trade.
On Sunday I made a batch of strawberry jam from berries in the freezer. I have 9 more gallons to be turned into jam; I need room in the freezer for tomatoes and zucchini. Cindy in NY, I use the upside-down method to make jam but never used it for pickles. Would you please share your recipe?
I printed a pantry checklist. Now that the storage is organized I can go through the shelves and see what we are lacking. Need to start a new coupon file, too. I had some newspapers on the backseat of my car to recycle. I didn’t realize that my coupons were on the seat, too, until I got to the grocery store and could not find my file. I even went back to the newspaper bin and searched but couldn’t find my coupons.
DH tilled the potato patch. His tiller was at DS’s all summer and he was so happy to have it back he had to till something before he put it in the shed. :happy:

 

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Quick trip to the Mennonite store. Really well stocked up today. Both my in-the-house rice buckets were gone so bought 100# rice and now I feel safe again! Not that we don't have plenty in our long term storage but we are big rice eaters on daily basis.

Our to-do list isn't that ambitious....a lot is stuff we haven't kept up on in this screaming hot weather. Finally got rain last night,1/2" but came down hard enough to save me five bucks on a car wash! First rain in over a month. Picked first green beans from the patch I've kept going with diligent use of soaker hoses.

Don't you just love going to the library and finding several new books by your favorite author?? Consider it a good day no matter what else might happen.

Went out to son's mini homestead to see the goats. Forgot how cute baby goats can be. Got them,mainly, to clear out their rocky woods...goat heaven. Place came with huge grape vines. They were excited to be able to make 18 qts. juice. Nice asparagus patch noted...and they don't like it. Spring looking tasty for me! The fruit trees we planted for them are all doing well. Need to mulch them. Working on some raised beds.
 

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I picked 4 5#zucchinis:smack must have missed those ones...gave 2 to the bull and he was happy! Also picked tomatoes, corn, cukes and beets
Went looking for quart jars...could not find many.....I was puzzled.....so I started counting...140 q milk, 99q of green and yellow bean, 75q of tomato....24q of dry canned flour, 24 q of rice....24q of soup beef, 12 q of chicken, 12 q of turkey....another 24 of various dry beans, a case of dry milk....

I didnt even look at the pint jars...I was so worried DH wouldnt find a job that I went a little crazy last year....:rolleyes:

Found this chicken zucchini casserole recipe:
http://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/zucchini-casserole
 

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Got my OTC stuff today. $123 at Walmart, but its done. Should have enough vitamins, supplements, OTC meds and personal supplies to last until Spring. Dh uses Fixodent and Sunday's paper had a $1.50 coupon which I used. When I got home I went to my neighbor's and got her Sunday ads so I now have another $1.50 coupon for my next trip to town. I had another $3 worth of coupons that I used. I usually don't buy name brands so seldom use coupons. However, these were all for things we use so I saved $4.50...almost enough to pay for dh's fast food fix lunch.

We had a very intense lightning/thunder storm around 1:30 a.m. and another 1/4" of rain. I've decided the potatoes have to be mudded out before they rot. I just can't wait for things to dry out especially with rain forecast for Thursday. So tomorrow I guess I'll be getting very muddy.

We took stuff to donate at the thrift shop today. Another box gone - yeah! Of course, I had to go in and look at things and I found a Readers Digest Complete Guide to Needlework. I have a copy but I got this for dd's Christmas gift for $1. Also, found a denim jumper for $2.95 that I will be converting into aprons. I couldn't buy enough fabric for one apron for $2.95 and I think I will easily get 2 from the jumper.

I also went to Menards and bought 2 dozen more pints on sale for $6.29 a dozen.
 

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Wow September, where did my summer go. Lotta to do this month. Got a bed of beans in, a row of lettuce, and will put in another row. Got tomatoes and some jalapenos planted. Will be planting some beets in a couple of weeks.
Gonna work on getting the roof on the addition and siding. Putting in the windows.
Finish up the new corral before the bottle calf gets here.
I need to rearrange the cabin to make room for the wood cook stove I was gifted with. Plan on cooking and heating with it this winter.yea.
Finish cutting the dead trees and citing up for wood this winter.
Finnish organizing the pantry.
Wow that's a lot for this month.
Hope everyone has a great day.
 

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Wow. The heat wave "turned" and I'm shocked that it feels pleasant and cool at night! My Excalibur is a 5 tray and all full of grapes-to-raisins right now(started end of last month). Looks like I'll get to do that again! I only get a year's worth of a few things so that makes me happy.

THIS month : First pear jam and preserves from my maturing tree!!!
Very LATE plum has ripening fruit for the first year! Books say they bear in July-August! Looks like more plum sauce,etc to me,but for now I'm just watching!
Got to find professional help to prune an out of control tree going over the house that is against fire prevention codes. I heartily chopped it off teetering on top of a ladder 2 years ago and it's just Too much now. MY effort seemed to encourage the top to grow! Arghhhh.
Have to do some drip line study and plan parts for a new line for the flowers I hose water out front and get parts for areas that I feel stayed too dry with this ongoing drought weather.
Make winter bee hive insulators from carpenters heavy duty plastic bags and left over insulation from winterizing our "garage" (which is really a woodworking and lapidary shop).
Ongoing tomato canning begins ....unfortunately looks like a quart at a time (sigh)
Study garden rotation chart for 2015 and prepare garlic bed for planting.
Inventory pantry and make sure oldest dates are to front;begin quarterly store shopping list.
Weed and mulch asparagus beds I've Totally "let go" (rolling eyes)
A dozen pie quarts and a few quarts dehydrated apples should be ready to do by the end of this month.
Rake out chicken coop and add some zeolite(eliminates smell) and gravel (the real yearly "mucking out" is in late Spring when the ground dries)
Make a 3-4 month batch of laundry soap(the typical Fels,borax,Washing soda recipe)
Take a 2 day one night OUT at a motel 100 miles away with DH,to go swimming,eat at an"exotic" place and relax sight seeing.

I put out a local "help" message for a good heirloom drying bean so I can change the seed that failed the last 2 years. I LOVE Good Mother Stallard and it grew perfect for 3 years here but the last 2 HOT years blossoms burned up and I got only plants not beans. Have to give up my favorite....snif.Also today I got in some late baby?(depends on how much time they have now) carrot and kale seed that should do OK due to extra cloche "tent" to add a month of growth in Oct-Nov.Have some local "winter" lettuce and spinach that overwinters small but goes crazy as early as March for greens I'll plant any minute(hahahah). Eating summer squash and cuces and cherry tomatoes. Don't know What I'll do with the overgrown strawberry bed !!! When they go dormant I may have to plant a "wild area" and just Let them be tiny....no space left.BUT I may make ONE more raised bed since we love strawberries....I can hardly keep the beds I've got alive and cared for and said "No More Beds" this year but now it's soooo tempting....... ?

I enjoy all the inspiring lists here and get a kick out of the redundant ones I list,already listed by others too!
 

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Discussion Starter #20
It's cool and showery here today - good day to curl up with a good book and a hot cup of mocha. Before it rained, I did a bit of weeding in the garden while Abby hauled more compost. Picked the pears (all 3 of them) and a bunch of Chehalis apples that were ripe. Plenty more on the tree that I'll give more time. Really like this variety - crisp and sweet/tart at the same time. If Costco has them next Spring, I think I'll add a couple more to the orchard.

I also washed and re-filled all the empty water jugs and single serving bottles, put a bunch of them in the freezer and more in the fridge. Abby did dishes, but I went behind her and found more that needed doing. She still needs reminding that the whole kitchen has to be wiped down as part of getting the dishes done, but she's trying hard. Then it was changing sheets and doing laundry for me, and some general housework. I guess I needed an indoor day just to catch up on the house!
 
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