Regardless of how you feel about the election, there were a few bright spots. Around here, a town near us is allowing the keeping of backyard chickens for the first time. I overheard some conversation about at a class I’m teaching. It was really interesting to hear how excited people were although the excitement was tinged with worry about rising food prices. I did one woman say that getting permission to keep a few goats was the next thing she was hoping for.

I helped a neighbor clean her barn out this week  to make room for a new milk house. As we are buying a share of the cow I felt it was only fair that I participate in the work. In the midst of hauling out many year’s worth of junk, I found a box of books. In going through them I found a three of the Foxfire series. What treasures! I haven’t read them before. Now I have to get the rest of the series. They are full of Appalachian wisdom, folklore and instruction for just about anything you might need to know how to do someday. I was very  interested in food preservation, especially the smoking and salting of pork.

Next week is going to be a tough one for posting. I have to be out-of-town for a couple of days (thursday and friday) and then I have wedding and a fundraiser to attend. After that, my life settles down. I have turned down all other speaking engagements and I’m concentrating on food security trainings that are within 100 miles of home. If I have to fly, I’m not going. If I have to be away over night, I’m not going. If it doesn’t matter to me beyond the paycheck, I’m not going. If Bruce can’t come with me, I’m not going, That makes it easy.

I spoke with a few families last night and worry rising is just as fast as prices. What are the things you will need, no matter what? What could you buy ahead that will hold value? I’m thinking tangibles here beyond food. How about shoes, socks and underwear? Nearly all are made overseas and will be affected by rising fuel costs. I have coats for my girls for several years. Bought second-hand, these set me back very little (as in under $5.00 for Columbia parkas and LL Bean boots). Work gloves and long underwear, sheets and blankets, bikes and umbrellas, toothbrushes and shovels. Nothing on my own list is exotic. It’s just the stuff of my life that I want to have. It makes holiday shopping pretty easy as all of my adult kids are getting a box of necessities this year. My grandkids have plenty of “stuff”. They are also getting boxes of necessities like shoes and shirts, mittens and bathrobes. They will never miss another toy and may well be mighty glad for the warm sweater.