Wild Moon Cottage is a small working homestead in the pristine Ozark Mountains. We have dairy goats, poultry, organic herb and vegetable gardens, a start of a tiny fruit orchard, several black walnut trees, wild berries and fields of wildcrafting goodness. We raise our own milk, our own eggs, much of our own medicine and food. I do laundry by hand, make my own vinegar, candles, soap, bread, cheese ........ For a living I am an artist and herbalist. My goal for myself and our homestead is to be as self sufficient and self sustaining as possible.

Saturday, November 29, 2008


Today dawned cold and gray. I actually like it these kinds of days. I tend to like most kinds of days tho :)

When we out for morning chores it was sprinkling a bit, I suppose it could snow, it's going to be cold enough to. We've had flurries once or twice already this year but just a tiny bit. Snow is such a wonderful thing.

I've made a little side pen for the chickens to forage in. It's just a big piece of fence that we can move around a bit. They always have to be able to get to the henhouses but until I can fence in the gardens I'm not letting them out. They killed or damaged several herbs by uncovering them, scratching at their bases and leaving them with no mulch to freeze or dry. They attack my beloved rosemary the last time they were out and it's not looking that great. So for now they can forage in the extra pen.

When we came back in from chores I made a skillet of eggs, ham, potatoes, onions and cheese on the woodstove while it heated the house. It was delicious, we filled our bellies and warmed the whole house all at the same time.

I let the fire burn out early, it wasn't to cold and the chill and damp were gone in no time. The Burrow holds the heat marvelously. I'm so very thankful to live in the earth.

I read a little while this morning, still reading "Into The Forest" If it ends well it will likely be one of my favorites. It's a very good book.

When the sun had risen a little more we went out and worked in the yard. I used some old caulking to fill in a few holes still left in the large henhouse. I used expanding foam to fill all the gapping cracks. It didn't turn out at all like I had planned but will keep them safe and warm through the winter and I'll just have to redo it next summer.

When we came back in we had a lunch of the last of the Thanksgiving leftovers. I warmed in all together in a lidded casserole in the oven.

There's still a whole half of actual turkey left and I'll tend to that tomorrow. Removing all the meat, making turkey salad for sandwiches and freezing the rest of the meat in meal sized batches.

After lunch I prepared some apples for drying. They're drying now on the Hoosier. The last batch I made were cinnamon sugar but these are just plain. I give them a bath (at least 2 minutes) in very hot honey water. They still brown a bit but not as much.

While I was preparing the apples Nik cracked a bunch of walnuts. It's amazing how little meat you get from so much shell. but we're so thankful for any amount. When I was done with the apples I took the cracked walnuts and got the meat out to dry a bit.

We tended evening chores and came back in for a supper of cheese and crackers and apples.

I made flat cookies, some of several different kinds. They're made with simple pie dough and can also be made into excellent little crackers. Tonight I made several dozen, a few of each kind, cinnamon n sugar, plain sugar, frosted with colored sugar, almond with grated almonds on top, vanilla with chopped walnuts on top and some little pocket cookies with grape jam inside. All from the same very simple dough.

This evening I've spent reading a little more but also going over lists of what I feel we need to get or make.

cross cut saw
pressure cooker
more bow saw blades

woodhorse (like a saw horse but for cutting wood)
fence in the gardens
build new drying racks

Our old broke down this summer. It wasn't really big enough anyway and I want at least two about the size of a screen door. Our old one was made from an old screen window.

I would like that have the lists done by spring, or at least summer.

Tomorrow we have to deliver eggs to Ozark and get our Yule decorations out :)

1 comment:

fly tie said...

such a fulfilled existence.

i know what you mean about walnuts. i just love 'em to life and get so disappointed sometimes to find so little nut in that bulky shell. but just to have them around to eat is a blessing, cause they are so tasty to me.