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.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Numbers & Time

There are white rabbits everywhere, running this way and that, crying in urgency hurry! we must hurry! And all the while the inhabitants lazily sip tea under a sallow winter sun.

Things do continue to move but, we who wait on them to proceed further still, can do only that, wait.

We have posted a lookout, just in case.

The Burrow is filled to bursting with boxes. Trails lead to the most needed things and some things, like my sewing box haven't been seen in over a month. It is exciting, stressful, exhilarating, terrifying ... in fact I cannot think of anything that doesn't apply :)
I've had a very hard time sleeping lately but even so there has been time for dreaming. Last night I dreamed that ...

I went to get my mother and bring her to live with us. when i arrived it was discovered that she had killed 3 people and she herself had turned into a small dog. I felt horrible for the people she had killed but I was thankful that she was a small dog because now I could care for her and hold and pet her.

The dream then shifted and I was in a strange house. I wished not to be there, I knew I didn't belong and I feared no one would believe that I had just appeared there. i heard people coming and hid in a bathroom. A man and woman ran by in the hallway and the woman was yelling "it's 11:11:11, time to get out!" She yelled it several times and then I woke. The clock said 2:22

Life is an odd creature.

I haven't made any in a while but here is how I render fat to lard. I am told by some people that this cannot be done or cannot be done inside. I will tell you that I have done it often, always inside and with most excellent results. If I were to render a huge amount of fat, processing a hog etc., of course it would be done outside :) I have seen my grandfather do it with a whole hog outside in barrels. I had read about doing it with household fat and tried it a time or two with ok results. The a friend on yahoo group shared her way and I've been doing it that way (with a minor Juli changes) ever since ...

Rendering Fat - small scale

I use fat from all meats and sometimes get extra pork and bacon fat free with my bacon at the processors. I skim the fat off all cooked meats, except very spicy or bbq, just let the meat juice cool and you can spoon the fat right off. I cut the fat off anything else, ham, roast... and save in freezer bags. I save the cooked fat in a bowl in the freezer and when i have enough I render it into lard. It's not nearly enough for soap making but it lasts fairly well for baking and such (I don't deep fry anything).

You can do this with just a few cups of fat saved and at least you'll have a little good home rendered lard :)

To render, I cut the solid fat up, never measured but I cut it pretty small. I add the solid and bowl fat to a big pot (spaghetti pot or canning pot, whichever will do). I add about 2 parts water to 1 part fat and cook. I start with low heat and then raise it up to boil good for several minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool. When the rendered fat solidifies on top of the pot I spoon it off into a bowl. Pour the water through strainer with cheesecloth, wash the pot, rinse well add the fat and clean water and render again. I do this 3 to 4 times until the water remains clear after rendering. After the last rendering I let the rendered fat sit in a bowl and cool down more then spoon into canning jars with good lids and store in the fridge. The leftover bits can be used for cracklins. I used to not eat them but they very good and even just a small amount can add a lot of flavor.

And, to quite change the subject, I had written this up for the Apothecary site but haven't posted it there yet, I'll add it here as well.

Treating Spider Bites

I am not a doctor in any way, shape or form. When bitten by a spider try to figure out what type and seek medical help/advice. Otherwise .... wash, rise and dry the wound immediately then apply one of the following every 2 hours for 24 hours then every 4 hours the next 24 then every 6 hours ....
Large doses of Vite C for 48 hours to combat secondary infection and boost immune system

Common spider bites - meat tenderizer, particularly Adolf's, in a paste to neutralize the toxins that cause necrosis (the craters). Baking soda works for some bites (or on some people) but not others.

Suspected Brown Recluse, Black Widow etc - topically activated charcoal paste to draw out and neutralize. Internally drinking water with activated charcoal

Apply honey to the wound a few times a day after it begins to heal.

Of course, get to a doctor if you can :)

There are all sort of remedies, these are just what I use and recommend.


the wild magnolia said...

Love your "lookout".

Mountain Blessings said...

I love your site!I have been searching for you, well basically someone of like mind. Would you mind putting me on your email list so that when your new store is up and running I can come look. Blessings on your new place and I hope it all goes quickly. Thanks for sharing, Marla