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.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Part 1 of 4 - Giving up on the old vs Giving up

I’m not a giving in or giving up kind of person. It goes against every fiber of my being. Even at the risk of life and limb I keep fighting. Sometimes to the point of no good sense.
I’m half Irish and a Missouri Mule. An Irish mule. Yay 

Even so, I do occasionally contemplate escape. Murphy’s law, Viola’s curse, bad luck, whatever the hell is going on, it does get me down at times. There are times that I do consider leaving it all behind and starting over from scratch.

When I went to get the tags for the blazer this year I found that Christian co. was claiming I owed back taxes. I am positive I paid them and would have had to pay them to get the blazer tagged in Ozark co in 2011 (which I did). But I couldn't find the receipts (which I always keep safely in a small safe) and had to pay them over again.

Then I went for inspection and they wouldn't pass it because the front brakes were getting bad. Saved up and got them repaired. Two days later, the day before I was to get it re-inspected, I went to get hay and one of the back breaks broke badly and is now leaking brake fluid.

I found someone who would likely pass the blazer through inspection without being to picky. The first time I went to him he was at a funeral and off for the week, the second time he had been fired    (((((((poor guy)))))))

I need a legal blazer to make money for repairs and I need money to get a legal blazer so that I can make money for the repairs. It’s like chasing the sun to watch it rise.

Ostara morning (the first day of spring) I went out to do morning chores and found our sweet Thistle dead. It appeared she had gone into labor early (she wasn’t due for another 2 to 3 weeks) and died in childbirth. She was fine the night before with no signs of labor or distress or anything. By the next morning she was dead and both kids with her. She was our milk supply and a way of trading and making a little money each year all gone. But she was also my friend and a part of our family. Dead and cold in the bright sun of the spring dawn.

We have had more death in the 2 years here than we had in 9 years at the Burrow, or any other span of time in any other place. Merlin, Leader, Ivy, Firebolt, Ravi, Jet, Pixie, Griffin, Cocoa, Alice, Ajax and now Thistle. That’s not counting poultry, of which we’ve had spates of losing. Or rabbits of which we lost a group to my mistake on worming. In 9 years at the Burrow we had one such death.

My sister and brother-in-law moved out a month or so ago, although we didn’t find out until a few days after they started moving.

Lydia, our Runner duck, was murdered by a damn possum, who was promptly captured and relocated.

I won’t even bother listing the plumbing problems, the lack of solar shower, etc etc etc

And, to add evil frosting on a vicious cake….

I had taken a cleaning job (which I loath) to make extra money. The deal was a spring cleaning, 3 hours a day for 3 days at 15.00 an hour. I detest cleaning houses but it was good money and only a few miles from the cottage, so I took it. It went from 3 days to 6 days, from a house to a garage to a barn. The original 9 hours turned into 19 hours total. $285., hard earned but worth it to me.

However, with the completion of each job there was another and another and I would only get paid when they were all completed. I explained that I needed to be paid for what we had agreed on now. I reminded her that this was a temporary arrangement and that we had already gone way past the original deal. I explained that I needed to be paid for fuel etc etc etc etc etc.  It’s been around 3 weeks and still not a penny.  

To finish that week, Thursday and Friday I wove hammocks and baked for the farmers market. I baked all day for two days, which included the clean up, wrapping, labeling etc. etc.. By Friday night I had 3 hammocks done, 32 sage and honey bread twists, 6 one pound sage and honey mounds, 1 two pound sage and honey braid, 20 pumpkin muffins and 16 small spiced pumpkin loaves.

By the time I went to bed Friday night I felt terrible. My head hurt, glands swollen, throat was sore, my chest hurt and hard to breathe. I was congested and stuffy. I figured it was just exhaustion with a bit of allergies/sinus because of spring and went on to bed for a few hours rest.

At 5:30am, up for the farmers market, I was very ill. Coughing, couldn’t breathe, splitting head, very upset stomach, sore throat, itchy painful and swollen eye …..

Adding candy coated crap to the already vile cake, turns out I had an upper respiratory infection which included sinus infection, laryngitis, inner ear and conjunctivitis. I’ve been to a doctor or hospital twice in the last almost 20 years, I am Not a conventional medicine person. I would have happily gone to the ER this time but ….

Things are as they are. I missed market two weeks in a row. The bread went into the freezer and I worked on getting well.

Then a few days ago our refrigerator stopped working completely. Thankfully we lost very little food and have a tiny fridge and a small deep freezer to get us by until I can find another proper fridge.

Life is change, even through death, destruction and despair. It is an odd thing. Like a living, breathing creature itself. A part of us, but also a part from us.

So, the sun rises each day, dawn breaks, things change, we make our choices and the web spreads further on to connect and entwine everything and everyone. Each night the moon, in all her glory, gives us time to rest and renew. She watches the results of each day’s evolution and washes over us, seen and unseen, so that we can start again with the rise of the new day. The circle turns and life goes ever on.

How can I not be a part of such an intricate dance? My feet know the steps, my body yearns for the sway, my ears strain to catch each delicate note of the accompanying music.

There is no question.

She changes everything she touches, and everything she touches changes.

Wake up. Start again.

So mote it be

1 comment:

Knitted Home said...

I am so sorry for all your loss and hard luck :( I hope peace and new life come your way soon!