I Answer A Question That I Am Asked Often. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .


Good evening everyone, I hope everyone enjoyed their Thursday!

Many have asked me a certain question several times, so I thought I would blog a bit and explain it.

Question: Since crime is high, why do i not move from the area? 

I get asked this a lot.  So here is my answer

Answer:  Yes crime may be high. But I will never leave the Rockford area.  I am here to make a difference. By keeping people informed and to help make our area better.  Only us here in the Rockford area can make a difference here.

The more informed a person is, the better they become.  The better things around that person become as well.

In return the community will turn around and become better.

With that being said, there are a lot of cool things in the Rockford area that many places do not have. We have museums, water park, zip line park, cafes, etc…  I mean there is a lot of positive stuff that is in our area.  And I am looking forward to more things becoming established here in the future.

Yes, crime is an issue. Many people are afraid to leave their homes. Some even carry guns just to go sit out on their porches or to take the trash out.   

Yes, it is a scary time we live in, because crime is high and the police shut the public out from helping them trying to combat crime and criminals use the encryption to their advantage and get away scott free to commit more crimes.

Ask yourself, why is the local media not stepped up against the encryption? They embraced the encryption and just said send us stuff when you see it. They did not step up and say hey we are against it. Ask yourself, why?

Things are run half azz backwards with city leaders and yet I have been portrayed as the bad guy because I am the one who has the balls to actually step up and say something about the situation.  I don’t mind being portrayed as a bad guy by certain people, because it brings attention to me and my voice speaks even louder then.

Which is what I am hoping to do. Speak loudly and make positive changes in the community.  That is why I choose to stay here.  Because I grew up in the Rockford area. I choose to stay here because the citizens are awesome! I choose to stay here because we have a lot of potential and growth. I choose to stay here because we will make Rockford great again!

Things do not change overnight.  Things change with baby steps. Things change when people begin demonstrations down at the city hall and their voices are heard. Things change when those baby steps turn into giant leaps.

I am proud to live in the Rockford area. And I am proud to be one of those baby steps that will make the giant leap one day. I am proud of ALL the citizens in the Rockford area for staying and not fleeing. Even if you want to flee and can not, you are still here and can be a baby step as well. I am proud of what we will become in the future. 

So to put a long story short:  I choose to not leave Rockford because I stand proud to live in the Rockford area.  I stand tall and let my voice be heard and am not afraid to speak up.  Rockford area citizens are great people and I am proud to stand tall with each and everyone of you.





Rickie Traeger Blog: Space-X Falcon 9 Full Thrust Launch, SKYWARN,ARES,Ham Radio, Recent DX Contacts, Etc…


Watch the Falcon 9 Full Thrust Launch at http://www.spacex.com/webcast

This is one of those late night blogs. So it might be one of those long ones. Don’t say I did not warn ya, lol

I hope everyone was able to get out and enjoy the weather recently, before the rain moved in. We never did have those thunderstorms.  I was looking forward to those. Oh well, it is not like we won’t have thunderstorms in the future lol.

I been reorganizing my RS/Photography bag. I was able to fit more stuff in it. I also added a hidden tracker in it, in case it gets stolen.  I went through it and found my motion/lightning trigger device. It did not work before, but I am going to try it out again this year, maybe it was operator error before. So wish me luck. I am hoping to get some bad azz lightning photos this year.  We did not have many storms in 2017, I am hoping 2018 will be better.

I am making plans to go chasing in the Midwest this year. Nothing is set in stone yet.  I am talking with a few chaser friends of mine and we are making plans.  No dates are set, probably one the spur of the moment things.  We decided it be cheaper to pool together and do a team thing.  And use the broker to sell our footage to media outlets to help fund the chases.  Like I said, nothing is set in stone yet, so I can not say too much right now, it is in the planning stages still.

Speaking of that topic, I went to our local ARES and SKYWARN meeting on Monday night. it is always a pleasure to attend those.  I don’t want to say too much about the meetings, because I am not sure what I can and can not make public. But it was fun seeing everyone in person and I am looking forward to the ARES and SKYWARN in 2018.

If you want to become a part of ARES and/or Skywarn or just learn about ham radio in the Rockford area,     CLICK HERE

I was able to get 2 DX stations recently.  First one was in Canada, VA3SZ.

The other one was in Venezuela,  YV5ENI.

The band conditions have been up and down the last few weeks. So I was excited to get these.  They both were 5/9 + on the S levels.   🙂

I am listening to Coast to Coast AM as I type this. I am enjoying the topic tonight. The guest is talking about space!  He made a good point that many do not realize. That is when you look up in the sky, almost every star you see has a planet around it. Yes, that is true!  Our universe is vast, beyond any imagination.  And we are learning more things everyday!

Speaking of space, there is a launch in a few hours! The Falcon 9 Full Thrust,  PAZ & Microsat-2a, Microsat-2b is launching just after 8 am this morning.  I plan on watching it. I am excited. Yes, I am a huge space geek. They are testing out the starlink, a space based internet service of 4000 satellites! Also a military earth observatory satellite.

SpaceX is targeting a Falcon 9 launch of the PAZ satellite to low-Earth orbit on Wednesday, February 21 from Space Launch Complex 4 East (SLC-4E) at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California. The instantaneous launch opportunity is at 6:17 a.m. PST, or 14:17 UTC. (8:17 AM CDT) The satellite will be deployed approximately eleven minutes after launch.

Falcon 9’s first stage for the PAZ mission previously supported the FORMOSAT-5 mission from SLC-4E in August 2017. SpaceX will not attempt to recover Falcon 9’s first stage after launch.

If you are still reading this, thank you 🙂     I will close this out by saying a few things.  I hope everyone has a safe and happy Wednesday. Also I highly encourage you to get involved in the ham radio hobby. And also watch the amazing Space-X Falcon 9 Full Thrust rocket launch just after 8 am this morning!



Rickie Traeger Blog: Blog For Monday February 19th 2018


I was going to update yesterdays blog about the Daytona 500, but I did not get the chance. So I will finish it up here.

I was rooting for William Byron, Danica Patrick and the Stewart-Haas team.  Well, William was wrecked out early. Danica was wrecked out later on. And the Kurt Bush was wrecked towards the end. And Aric Amorilio  was wrecked into the last corner on the final lap by Austin Dillon. So yeah, pretty frustrating, lol.

It was definitely good to see Nascar back on again!

Tonight is the ARES and Skywarn meeting.  I am not feeling the best as I type this, so hopefully I start to feel a little better by then.  It is an important meeting tonight.

It is supposed to get up to the mid 50’s today. But it is only 42 right now. And it is 2 pm as I type this, so i doubt we will even reach upper 40’s. Because it is cloudy and rainy outside and I do not see the temps rising to much higher.

I was going to go fly my quadcopter, but the weather is not in my favor.  So I guess the flight for today will be postponed lol.  I am not flying in the rain.

I hope the X-Files is on this week. It was not on last week!

I am popping off here to go lay down……….






Rickie Traeger Blog: Daytona 500 is here!


Well the Daytona 500 has started a few minutes ago!  I am super excited!

All though it is bittersweet. Danica Patrick, it is her last race. I was hoping she would continue her career in Nascar.  But this is her final race 🙁    Hopefully she can win!

Oh man,  I have to eat my words!  I am rooting for William Byron this year.  I did not think Darrell “Bubba” Wallace JR was not going to be good. Holy cow, I was wrong!  That man is kicking butt and taking names at Daytona right now. Bubba Wallace JR will definitely be one to watch this year.

You can read about my thoughts  on the new drivers in the link below

Rickie Traeger Blog: Who To Follow In Nascar In 2018

At the time of writing this, they are only 12 laps into the Daytona 500.  They had their first caution with a blown engine. I am actually shocked with the new aerodynamics from the new car design, that there has not been an accident yet.

I really hope no one crashes Danica.  Whenever she does good, someone always wrecks her.  I was reading online, on all the BS she has been through because she is a female driver in Nascar. On how they purposely crashed her, lots of harassment, etc…

Alright I am going to pop off here and will probably edit this at the end of the race.  So check back later on





Rickie Traeger Blog: Happy Friday!


Good morning everyone. Guess what day it is, yup Friday!

Tonight it is supposed to be around 4 degrees above zero.  But it is supposed to rise! Yes, you hear me right! Monday is supposed to be around 50 degrees and even a thunderstorm! That would be the first thunderstorm of 2018 for us!

The warm weather is well needed!  I had to go up on the ladder yesterday and use a hammer and a flat head screwdriver to chisel out a ton of ice from the roof and gutters. That was a chore in itself!  I tossed some salt down on it, and that made things  a lot better. I tossed the salt on it, waited about 30 minutes and came back and tried to get rid the ice. I should of took some photos of it, but I just wanted to get it done.

I am going to send out a shout out to Lask Roofing.  If you are having any ice on your roof, leaking, etc… issues. Be sure to call them!

I watched the Nascar Duels yesterday.  Was good to see Nascar on tv again.  Was very interesting to see the new car design and the aerodynamics and how it was getting everyone loose. A lot of accidents in the duels, because of the aerodynamics from the new car design. It will be an interesting season for sure.

I am going to pop off here, hoping to catch some zzzz’s.    I injured myself while chiseling that ice, so the rest is well needed.  I will blog later on today.





Rickie Traeger Blog: Happy Valentine’s Day, Survival Off Grid Post

I first want to start this off by saying Happy Valentines Day!  I hope everyone enjoys their Valentines!  Happy Valentines Day!

Just heads up if anyone is feeling generous! My Amazon Wish List for now ~ CLICK HERE

As many of you know I always like to be prepared. Best to be prepared, than not be. With the world as it is these days , you never know what may happen. If we had to go back to living like cavemen, not many people would know what to do to survive.  So I figured i would post a generalized survival blog post in hopes to helping or at least motivate others into learning how to survive a bit.

So I been reorganizing everything and going through and seeing what i have and don’t have. And trying to make things right.  Bu SHTF bag is good to go. I just need to add a hobo stove or something like that to it. And I should be good to go there.  I have it tightly packed will all the essentials.  I do need to add my radio equipment to it, but I will probably do that later this week.

I am searching for a few vehicle batteries.  They can be dead.  Yes, you can revive them lol.   I am going to setup a solar panel kit and use it for the ham radio stuff. Basically set it up and get used to it and get to know it.  I need a few vehicle batteries.

If you have one laying around that you been wanting to toss out, let me know!

I been also making plans to work outside a lot this year.  One my other reasons why I want a solar setup.  As spring comes, I want to be able to chill outside and work and lay out and look at the stars, while working as well.  That is my goal for 2018.  Solar panel setup and working outside more this year.

I been researching a lot of stuff online and know many off grid friends. So with the knowledge of online and friends, I think I should be good.

When in survival you need to remember a few things. Safety, Water, Food, Shelter.  Those key things will keep you alive.

I been looking at those life straws, they seem pretty decent.  But at the same time a good ol fire and boiling water would be just as effective, if not more. So why buy one, when you can do it the natural way!  But on a related note, if you have a lifestraw and used it, I would like to hear your feedback on them.

Food: One thing I am really good at, that many don’t know. Is making traps.   Traps are priceless.  They can be used to catch food, warn of intruders, etc…  I won’t go into details for obvious reasons, but one thing I would recommend people researching is, building traps.   You can hunt while chilling at your shelter doing other life saving measures.

Water: One thing about survival and it is key. That is WATER!  I can not stress this enough!  It is extremely important to know a location of a moving water source.  Rivers, streams, creeks, etc…   I think having a shelter several miles away is key for me.  That way I don’t have to deal with flooding, but yet it is still close enough to get the water on a daily basis if needed. Boiling it for a few minutes should kill all the bacteria. As stated above, i been looking at those life staws, and been wanting to try those. But do not rely on those in times of need, boiling the water is the best way.

Shelter:  Well this one can go many directions, so I will keep it short and sweet.  Above ground, on the ground, below the ground, etc…  There are many types of shelters to build. So it is best to research these and figure out what is best for you and your family.  Things to remember are: How many people will it hold, how long you want it up, location, weather, threats, etc… See there are many variables on the situation and so many different types per situation, this could be a long blog on this topic alone. It is best to research and learn on this one.

Safety: This to me is the most important thing. First aid and knowing your surroundings and being careful. If you are incapacitated, well then what good are you for yourself and the team?  Make sure you have a good first aid kit.  Learn your surroundings such as the terrain layout, animals, threats,  etc…  This should be your starting point.   That is your water, food, safety and shelter! You can plan ahead by this knowledge. Yes, I should of added this more towards the top, but I didn’t put these in order lol.

Protection: Weapons are your friends in times like this.  Traps, Knives, Blades, Guns, Crossbows, Twigs, Sticks, Stones, Bricks, Pepper Spray, Batons, etc…  This list is a long one.  Pretty much anything you see can be used for protection.  Ex:Tossing a rock at an animal to fend it off.

Protecting you and your family is a high priority.  I  recommend you building some traps to warn you of intruders and also slowing the intruders down or stopping them. Then when they get closer, then your main weapons come into play.  You need to protect yourself and family, to survive.  Also you have to think about this from animal threats, to hunting, etc…  So protection is a must!

If the worst case scene does hit, many will panic and not know what to do.  So protecting yourself from them, (if they pose a threat) is priority. It is best to work as a team and in numbers, to survive. More people, more knowledge, more survival.

Navigation:  I realized not many people actually know or understand how to navigate via the sun. They use their gps, cell phones, etc…  And not the sun or a compass. I thought everyone knew this. Guess I was way wrong, lol!   So to put a long story short, Sun rises in the East and sets in the West.  If you can remember this, you are good to go.

I suggest reading up online and books and talking to people who know how to survive. This way you can gain knowledge on survival. There is a saying and I live by this one religiously.  “You can strip a man of all his possessions, but you can never strip him of his knowledge” and that saying is priceless.

I have so much to add to this post but I am super tired. So I think I might start up something on my website here on teaching others on how to survive. I think that be a good idea to teach others.

Stuff to have:  I am just naming off a few things here and will make a long list of survival items in the future.

  • Water: Some kind of container to boil over the campfire, lifestraw, etc..
  • Lighter, matches, lint, etc…. to start a camping fire
  • Extra clothes: Socks, underwear, shirt, gloves, hat, pants, glasses, etc..
  • Tent, Sleeping bag, etc…
  • Compass
  • Some kind of weapons for portection
  • Glue, Tape, Duct Tape, Etc…
  • Solar equipment
  • First aid stuff: Bandaids, alcohol, wraps, asprin, antibiotics, etc…
  • Fuel
  • Backpack
  • Lighting such as lanterns, flashlights, etc…
  • Bug spray
  • Whistle
  • Mirror
  • Cans, Containers, etc…
  • Radio equipment
  • Bartering: Money, gold, silver, things people need like cereal, ammo, clothes, etc…  Basically you can barter anything.

Will make an in depth blog on this topic in the future. I like this idea on helping others learn and what better thing to learn, than survival!






Rickie Traeger Blog: Quick Blog For Today, The Grimm, Solar Storm, Etc…



It is 7 am as I write this, so I should say Good Morning to everyone.

A solar storm is headed our way. Hoping to see the Northern Lights this week. The downfall on the solar storm is poor HF conditions.  Also it is a good thing that we have our atmosphere. Because otherwise we would have some major issues. But thanks to mother nature, it is just poor HF and hopefully a beautiful light show.

Not to much to blog about today. I spent a great deal of time yesterday reorganizing my go bags. Making sure things are in order and added some things.  It is always best to be prepared, than to not be.

Going to be a heat wave tomm.  Going to be around 40 degrees. Been awhile since we last saw those high temps.  Might melt some this snow we recently had

Well I am going to pop off here. I wanted to pop on here and blog.  I been binge watching “The Grimm”  so I am going back to watching that.





Rickie Traeger Blog: Missing My Dad Alot, Walking Dead, Late Night Blog


Tonight is a late night blog. I thought I would wait and write a bit at night time. Usually my blogs are in the mornings (or whenever lol)  but I figured I would wait tonight and blog.

So here it is 10:30 pm as I sit here and blog. I been working on my paranormal page (hope to have it finished later tonight) on my website here. I been working on that for awhile, maybe a week or so. I been writing stuff in depth and hope to have that active soon.

We watched the winter Olympics earlier. Pretty cool stuff. I still do not understand curling, lol. But we watched the lug, snowboarding, figure  skating, etc… I was hoping the USA would be doing better. I think the judges are biased, because the whole USA/N Korea situation. But hey that is just my thoughts lol.

I am binge watching one of my favorite shows as I write this. The Walking Dead!  They have been playing it alot!  I am super excited!  Sure does bring back memories. I actually forgot some the scenes, so I am glad they are replaying them.  Good to watch them and remind me of what happened over the years. Yes, I am a huge Walking Dead fan, but I did forget some stuff. I think they should go back to their roots and focus alot of the walkers, not so much of the living.

One month and nine days.  That is my dad’s birthday and also the first day of spring.  Bittersweet.  I miss my dad ALOT!  Is not a day that goes by that I do not think of him. I think about him all the time.  I would give anything, to see or hear him one last time. I was hoping that he would become a ghost and I would see him. But that has not happened yet. Maybe that is a good thing, and he crossed over. I sure do miss my dad ALOT!

Anthony “Tony” Traeger, 55, of Loves Park passed away Thursday, August 14, 2014. Born March 20, 1959 in Rockford to Earl and Doris (Logsdon) Traeger. Employed as a CNA and Bus Driver for the Harlem School District. Married Pamela Slatton on November 3, 1978 in Rockford. Tony enjoyed fishing, bingo, playing the lottery, going to garage sales, and was a Green Bay Packer Fan. He also enjoyed spending time with his grandchildren.

He is survived by his wife of 35 years, Pamela Traeger; mother, Doris Traeger; sons, Rickie (Sarah) Traeger, Adam Traeger; grandchildren, Brittany Traeger, Melodie Brandt, Savannah Traeger, Isabella Davidson; sisters, Sheryl (Dan) Morgan, Tina (Steve) Pace; and mother-in-law, Char Slatton. Predeceased by his father, Earl; and father-in-law, William Slatton.

A visitation will be held from 6 – 9:00 p.m. Monday, August 18, 2014 in Honquest Family Funeral Homes with Crematory – Mulford Chapel, 4311 N. Mulford Road, Loves Park. To share a memory or condolence please visit www.honquestfh.com




Rickie Traeger Blog: Dreamlifter, More Snow, Nascar, Luge, Olympics, Clear Fire Hydrants, Etc…


Hope everyone has a safe and fun Saturday!

Nascar is back on TV!  I am switching between Nascar and the Olympics as I type this.  Watching the Arca race and the Mens Luge.  Super excited about both!

William did an awesome video on clearing out the fire hydrants.  Please take a few minutes and watch it. Very informative!  Kudos to William!  (CLICK HERE)

Speaking of, they are predicting another 1-3 inches tonight. (CLICK HERE) So odds are they will be enforcing parking once again. So heads up.  I was told by a meteorologist that the long term forecast shows warming temps towards the end of February!  Let’s hope that holds true!  So enjoy the snow while it is here.

I am a little under the weather today. So kicking back and watching Nascar and the Olympics works out great.  Dunno what it is, maybe just a bug. Who knows. Its not like I am full blown sick, just under the weather. I have a DR appointment this week. So hopefully I feel better by then.

Speaking of DR’s I was able to take my good friend Wizard to his eye doctor appointment. He now has a date scheduled for June. I am super excited for him! On side note, I got lost on the way to his appointment. So he was a lil late. But the doctors office was understanding. Thank god. But now he has a set date to look forward too!

The Dreamlifter left Dallas and flew into Chicago a little bit ago. It is scheduled to depart Chicago at 4:42 pm. And is headed to Japan. I am hoping I can see it fly overhead when it departs.  Hopefully the clouds stay away long enough so I can see it.

Out of all the aircraft in the world, the Dreamlifter is my favorite. I catch a lot of heck from friends for it. Because they like fighter jets, etc… And they think the Dreamlifter is big and ugly. To me, it is unique.  Thats why I like it!  It is unique and has special purposes. It has a special role and one of a kind aircraft.  It is always best to stand out as one and be yourself and unique, than to be just one of hundreds.  😉

National Holidays Today

February 10th
National Cream Cheese Brownie Day
National Home Warranty Day
National Umbrella Day







Rickie Traeger Blog: Winter Storm, NASACR, Olympics Opening Ceremony


Good Friday!

As you know we got slammed with a lot of snow in the last 24 hours. National Weather Service said we got between 6-10 inches unofficially.  Definitely is nice to see the snow!  I can’t wait for spring time, but the snow is nice to see. I guess they said another inch or two overnight tonight as well.

I took my youngest daughter sledding today for the first time.  She enjoyed it. We had fun. Cold but fun.  She went down a few times then wanted to come back home. So after going down the hill a few times, we came back home. We got stuck on the way back home. But we were able to get un-stuck, thank god.  When I got home I did the driveway.  My driveway wasn’t too bad. But the end of the driveway, OMG.  That part sucked.  The city plows come by and plow the street snow into the end of the driveway, and that snow is heavy as heck.

We went to build a snowman, but the snow was not packing. So we have to wait awhile to build one. That will be fun to do 🙂

Tonight is the opening ceremony for the Olympics.  That be fun to watch 🙂   We watched the skating and skiing last night.  The skaters kept falling, was interesting to see. You have to ask yourself, why are all these professional athletes falling?  I mean almost every skater fell during the competition.

NASCAR starts this weekend also!  Stewart-HAAS Racing and William Byron are the people I am rooting for this season.  I wanted to go for a rookie this year, so William Byron it is.  I am excited about NASCAR starting back up as well 🙂