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, July 21, 2014

7.21.14 Life in the deliberately slow lane

This month has had hardship and sorrow but also, as always, great joy and hope.

Star, my beloved companion and guardian is dying. She a shepherd wolf hybrid, 13 years old. Suddenly, almost 3 weeks ago now, she just stopped going to the bathroom and then topped eating. Rather than go through it all details I’ll just say that she had vet visits, tests and xrays, which could find nothing wrong, no twisted bowel, no blockage... She’s gone from over 100 lbs to around 60. I’ve been treating her, feeding her, moving her around, washing her etc etc etc. Some days she seems better but most days she’s worse. The last vet idea was exploratory surgery which is beyond my means. She’s home, sleeping a lot, wanting to live. If she crosses the veil then she will do so in peace and surrounded by great love.

I’ve also been having a time finding homeowners insurance again. The policy was getting ready to expire and I was able to have a new policy written up with s few things changed to my preference but then my lien holder contacted the insurance agency to complain about me and sent them some of my personal emails. Not surprisingly they dropped me completely and black listed my house as “uninsurable" forever.  Humans are so odd.

So I’m on the hunt again to find someone who will insure a house with wood stove. One snooty woman that I spoke with this week called our beautiful little cottage a “hovel”.  Another, very nice, woman said that the underwriters she works with won’t even insure her house, their standards are so strict she has to go elsewhere.

I found that it would have made it impossible to get homeowners if I had gone completely off-grid like I wanted to. It sounds as though it will get harder and harder for non-mainstream folks to get coverage. Pretty crazy stuff.

I am very thankful things aren't worse though.

And there’s still wonder…

I picked the first ripe pepper a few days ago and now I’m harvesting peppers and tomatoes daily.

I let the garden grow up, kept putting off work I should have gotten done. And now stink bugs are in the tomatoes but not too badly.

The herb gardens are doing very well. Small plants but it’s starting to look a little like my old gardens before the move. The one big thing that hurt my heart about leaving the Burrow was having to leave my herb garden. It was an ice storm and the was no chance to dig much up. But that’s done and tomorrow is a new day.

I’m still laid off my second job until august so I've been using that time to work on the house a bit. Preparing for an electric water heater, getting ready to paint the window and door trim and preparing to start painting floors.

We also got our first duck egg yesterday. Thank the Mother! We Really need our eggs although we do have a very local source to buy them.

We have at least 4 extra roosters that I have for sale but will probably turn into meat if they don’t sell soon. I don’t eat much meat and even less when I do the processing of it but it’s much healthier for the meat eaters, mainly Nik.

There’s at least 1 more younger roo and maybe a second one that we’ll sell or eat. Otherwise we’re keeping 3 roosters Archimedes – Ameraucana, Onyx – Barred Rock and Fauks – RIR. We didn’t get any Australorp roos and no RIR hens, no Buff Orps hatched out at all. In hens (not counting Old Hen) we have 7 Australorp, 7 or 8 Ameraucana, 3 Barred Rocks

We also have 3 Pekin ducks, 1 male and 2 female, wonderful things. Big like small geese, great fun to watch and good egg layers thus far.

And 5 Rouen ducklings. We got them on a whim from someone Nik works with. They’re very pretty ducks and apparently good to eat.

I’m also wanting to expand my little rabbitry a bit. Not too much but enough to better house who we have plus a couple of more does and children. Currently none are on the colonies because I needed one to house an ill cat (who’s almost completely well) and the other collapsed (no rabbit injuries or escapes). I saw that it was going so we moved everyone from it. So new/more colonies, pens and a new rabbit tractor are on the list.

I’m off now to finish supper. I’m baking a chicken crostata with fresh rosemary. A hearty double crust recipe, purposely a little tough to hold in all the goodness. Filled with leftover chicken, chicken gravy, yellow squash, potatoes, peas, onion, garlic, freshly cracked peppercorns, minced queen ann leaves. shredded lambs quarters. Once the crust is folded over I brush it with egg and sprinkle finely chopped fresh rosemary. Fresh slices of tomato with sea salt on the side. It’s a wonderful thing.

It’s such a hearty meal that for evening tea I’m just having tea with honey and goat’s milk. Sometimes the sweet tea is the dessert  :)

A basket of beautiful baby bunnies. Our most recent litter  :)

1 comment:

Issabella The Cat said...

My thoughts are with you and your poorly Star *Hugs*
Hope the home insurance sorts it's self out for you, what a faff!