Update on the Winter Wonderland....

A few days later and things are pretty much back to normal. Nothing but sunny days are forecasted for the next week....good. Not that I mind snow, I just mind too much of it.

We were fortunate to have not lost power during the storm, though we've gotten pretty used to it in recent years...even being without power for several days. Even as preppers, its not easy and it helps to have someone else to stay with. The power outages tend to be patchy when they happen, so if you have friends and family nearby, you may be in luck. Also, keep in mind that someone may have to stay with you at a moment's notice. That's probably my worst nightmare...depends who it is and how bad my house is that day.

One of our neighbors let us borrow his snowblower, which was a huge help. The stove decided to start working again and the plumber came yesterday to fix the water heater. So....I don't smell anymore, I'm glad I'm nice to my neighbors and I've learned the importance of keeping up with home maintenance and....checking the snowblower before the storm!

"When It Rains, It Pours...."

...OR...When It Snows...It Snows A Lot!

In the past 24 hours, Long Island (where I live) has been blanketed in several feet of snow, high winds have come roaring through, temperatures have plummeted, thousands have lost power, driving has been banned, trains have come to a standstill, a full moon has caused worse than usual flooding and sadly, a number of deaths have been reported. O Mary conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to Thee!

As for my personal situation, I can't even open my back door right now because it is blocked with so much snow. Not the safest situation, but my husband did shovel the front entrance. On the bright side, it is a beautiful, sparkling winter wonderland. It just makes you want to cozy up, start a fire and make some hot chocolate! Sometimes I envy those who live in areas of perennial paradise, where there is no winter...but, there is something wonderful about the changing seasons, each one possessing unique beauty. If I moved elsewhere, I think I would miss that. When the spring comes and everything returns to life, there is a greater appreciation for it. I think the cold winters and hot summers are part of what makes New Yorkers the tough people that we are. It is a place of extremes and we just take that in stride.

Okay, my friends, I haven't finished (I promise I'm not making this up!)...wouldn't you know, our snow-blower broke....and completely unrelated to the storm, our hot water heater and our oven/stove broke. All on the same day as this whopper of a storm hit. So, completely snowed in, no hot water and we had to move the dinner cooking on the stove to a crock pot. Thankfully, we have not lost power.

Sometimes I think God is trying to prepare me for something! Sometimes I think I hear Him saying, "So, Chiara, you want to prepare for the Apocalypse? You want to be a leader, helping My Church through the coming days? Okay have a go at THIS!" At times, I can't help but laugh at what life throws me. And we should always be lighthearted and never get too down (have you read my last post?). The path we tread leads straight to Heaven and life is just too short to let anything disturb us. Just love and trust-that's it. Be a source of joy to those around you, even in the worst circumstances. And always count your blessings...for instance, I may not have hot water, but at least I have water. I can't take a shower, but I stockpile baby wipes for sponge-bathing and hand-washing (they also have many other uses, even if they dry out). I may not have a big oven or a stove, but I have a toaster oven, a crockpot, a microwave, 2 grills and a fireplace (REDUNDANCY!). I have heat. I have tons of food. The day that concerns me is the day when survival becomes truly compromised, truly in the balance. And I believe that day is coming...for all of us.

This is just one more experience to learn from, in terms of short-term emergency preparedness. As a prepper, I find there is no replacement for actual, real-life experiences. The trick is...make the effort to learn from them. Identify your preparedness weaknesses and make a plan to systematically fix them. Reflect on how you and your family handled it. What was good? What could have been done differently? Taking notes and discussing it with your family is a good idea. These situations are invaluable opportunities which should not be squandered. In a few years, you'll hardly remember the details, so make an immediate effort to examine the experience. Perhaps it was sent to you for a reason.

BTW, today is the beginning of Septuagesima (wow, that came fast!) and the feast of Saint Francis de Sales, patron of writers. Saint Francis de Sales, pray for us!

Welcome to "In Search of The Authentic Life!"

Hi, I'm Chiara F. Mathews and I'm so glad you have found my new blog! I really hope you enjoy it and get something valuable out of it. This blog will explore (in an organic way, by creating an environment of ideas) the question, "How did God intend for His children to live?" Obviously, we as faithful Roman Catholics (BTW, I am faithful to our Holy Father Francis) must pursue holiness in accord with Catholic teaching. These topics will be dealt with, but we are also concerned here with how God intended us to live in practical everyday life and social structure. It should be obvious that western culture is desperately in need of a reality check. We are not living anything remotely like an "authentic" life. And this will surely have consequences.

In my study of disaster preparedness and sustainability (2 aspects of survival), I have begun to see a picture emerging....a thesis that the safest way to live, the surest way to survive, also happens to be the way our Creator intended us to live....close to the earth, with respect for it. This is not a new idea, I only seek to bring my own contribution to the table.

Due to limitations that I have right now, we are going to start this blog off slowly. I hope to post about once per week. Unfortunately, I do not have the time right now to moderate comments, so there will be no comments. However, please email me if you like, with any comments or feedback and I may decide to post them. My email:

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you will continue to take this exciting journey with me.:)

All content on this website, except for stated quotes and some images, is: Copyright 2015/2016/2017 Chiara F. Mathews. All rights reserved worldwide.