• Finding Alaska: The Life and Art of Shannon Cartwright
    Finding Alaska: The Life and Art of Shannon Cartwright
    by Shannon Cartwright
  • Trapline Twins
    Trapline Twins
    by Julie Collins
  • Riding the Wild Side of Denali: Adventures with Horses and Huskies
    Riding the Wild Side of Denali: Adventures with Horses and Huskies
    by Miki Collins, Julie Collins
  • Dog Driver: A Guide for the Serious Musher
    Dog Driver: A Guide for the Serious Musher
    by Miki Collins, Julie Collins
  • Two in the Far North
    Two in the Far North
    by Margaret E. Murie
  • Alaska's Wolf Man: The 1915-55 Wilderness Adventures of Frank Glaser
    Alaska's Wolf Man: The 1915-55 Wilderness Adventures of Frank Glaser
    by Jim Rearden
  • Back Tuva Future
    Back Tuva Future
    by Kongar-ol Ondar
  • Cave of the Yellow Dog
    Cave of the Yellow Dog
    starring Batchuluun Urjindorj, Buyandulam Daramdadi, Nansal Batchuluun, Nansalmaa Batchuluun, Babbayar Batchuluun
  • Mongolian Ping Pong
    Mongolian Ping Pong
    starring Hurichabilike, Geliban, Badema, Yidexinnaribu, Dawa (II)
  • Making Great Cheese: 30 Simple Recipes from Cheddar to Chevre Plus 18 Special Cheese Dishes
    Making Great Cheese: 30 Simple Recipes from Cheddar to Chevre Plus 18 Special Cheese Dishes
    by Barbara J. Ciletti
  • Grain-free Gourmet Delicious Recipes for Healthy Living
    Grain-free Gourmet Delicious Recipes for Healthy Living
    by Jodi Bager, Jenny Lass
  • Cooking Alaskan
    Cooking Alaskan
    by Alaskans
  • Stocking Up: The Third Edition of America's Classic Preserving Guide
    Stocking Up: The Third Edition of America's Classic Preserving Guide
    by Carol Hupping
  • The Big Book of Preserving the Harvest: 150 Recipes for Freezing, Canning, Drying and Pickling Fruits and Vegetables
    The Big Book of Preserving the Harvest: 150 Recipes for Freezing, Canning, Drying and Pickling Fruits and Vegetables
    by Carol W. Costenbader
  • Preserving Food without Freezing or Canning: Traditional Techniques Using Salt, Oil, Sugar, Alcohol, Vinegar, Drying, Cold Storage, and Lactic Fermentation
    Preserving Food without Freezing or Canning: Traditional Techniques Using Salt, Oil, Sugar, Alcohol, Vinegar, Drying, Cold Storage, and Lactic Fermentation
    by The Gardeners and Farmers of Centre Terre Vivante
  • Dersu the Trapper (Recovered Classics)
    Dersu the Trapper (Recovered Classics)
    by V. K. Arseniev
  • In the Shadow of Eagles: From Barnstormer to Alaska Bush Pilot, a Pilots Story
    In the Shadow of Eagles: From Barnstormer to Alaska Bush Pilot, a Pilots Story
    by Rudy Billberg
  • Bird Girl and the Man Who Followed the Sun
    Bird Girl and the Man Who Followed the Sun
    by Velma Wallis
  • Two Old Women: An Alaska Legend of Betrayal, Courage and Survival
    Two Old Women: An Alaska Legend of Betrayal, Courage and Survival
    by Velma Wallis
  • Rock, Water, Wild: An Alaskan Life
    Rock, Water, Wild: An Alaskan Life
    by Nancy Lord
  • Gardening When It Counts: Growing Food in Hard Times (Mother Earth News Wiser Living Series)
    Gardening When It Counts: Growing Food in Hard Times (Mother Earth News Wiser Living Series)
    by Steve Solomon
  • Root Cellaring: Natural Cold Storage of Fruits & Vegetables
    Root Cellaring: Natural Cold Storage of Fruits & Vegetables
    by Mike Bubel, Nancy Bubel
  • Beluga Days: Tracking the Endangered White Whale
    Beluga Days: Tracking the Endangered White Whale
    by Nancy Lord
  • Fishcamp Life on an Alaskan Shore
    Fishcamp Life on an Alaskan Shore
    by Nancy Lord
  • The Snow Walker
    The Snow Walker
    starring Barry Pepper, Annabella Piugattuk, James Cromwell, Kiersten Warren, Jon Gries
  • The Fast Runner (Atanarjuat)
    The Fast Runner (Atanarjuat)
    starring Natar Ungalaaq, Sylvia Ivalu, Peter-Henry Arnatsiaq, Lucy Tulugarjuk, Madeline Ivalu
  • Heartland [VHS]
    Heartland [VHS]
    starring Rip Torn, Conchata Ferrell, Barry Primus, Megan Folsom, Lilia Skala
This form does not yet contain any fields.

     

    Hunting * Fishing * Trapping * Gardening * Gathering Wild Edibles * Raising Livestock * Building by Hand * Homeschooling * Flying * Backpacking * Dog Mushing * Cheesemaking * Rock Hounding * Backcountry Living * And Other Old Timey Stuff

    Monday
    Nov042013

    Out with the old

    So much has happened in the last year, and yet it feels like not much has changed.  Life gets so busy... and sometimes our journey takes us in a big circle.  Here we are once again, on the cusp of another inbetween season on the mountain.  

    Life is good.  We have fewer goats now, a younger herd with high hopes of improved production.  And we have less chickens but more quail.  Also, we've been blessed to have had excellent help for over a year now, our friend Heidi and now her friend Sam are here to give a hand whenever we need it- and that's not a small thing.

    There's alot to be grateful for, and there are new dreams swirling around on their way to fruition.  I'm super excited to share with you what we have in store... I think it's going to rock our world and maybe yours too.  Stay tuned!

    Sunday
    Jul152012

    Unlikely mothers

    We've got some magic happening in the land of the birds this summer.  My 4yo red Ameracauna has been a great broody hen over the years.  I'm beyond thrilled to see her back in her element this year... mothering 4 guinea keets that I got from Margie and Tina.  The interesting part is that 3 years ago this hen hatched a nest of 14 guinea eggs and raised them as well.  She must have liked being a guinea mama to adopt this batch of adolescents, who were already being fathered by our resident guinea cock.  He hadn't any of his own species here for quite awhile... it was really fun to see him take charge of these guys.  And now that the hen has stepped in, they are quite the inseparable family.  On a separate but related note, here is one of my older dark cornish hens who has adopted our Freedom Ranger meat chicks of various ages.  Fun.

    Sunday
    May272012

    Rainy day

    Ahhh... this morning we woke up to the sweet pitter patter of spring rain on the roof.  I was surprised to go out and find that the rain barrels were already filled and overflowing.  The cool wetness made for a lazy start to the day, and when I finally got outside to feed the big goats in preparation for milking I found that Guava was dripping mucus.  

    She was getting ready to give birth.  In fact her water broke while I was scraping the barn floor.  So I stepped up the morning events and called my Mom to come up and help.  I plopped Miekka into the Bumbo seat in the milkhouse and started gathering goats.  In between every goat or two, I'd dutifully check on Guava, but progress was slow.

    Halfway through milking, my Mom arrived and took over kidcare while I finished up.  I was surprised that Guava didn't finish before I did.  Finally, after much watching and waiting, some feet poked out... hind feet they were- I could tell because they were upside down.  She'd push the feet out almost up to the hocks, and then after awhile they'd slip back in again.

    Guava's sister (Mango and her yearling daughter (Ava) never left her side.  The daddy buck (Sasquatch) was there for the whole thing as 0well.  Taslyn and I made alot of trips out to check on her, but not much was happening.  Contractions seemed to be a long ways apart and not that productive.

    After a couple hours of it, I gave a tentative tug on the feet.  She was in there pretty snug.  A few more tugs while Guava was pushing and the baby started to move.  Guava seemed appreciative of the assistance and worked with me.  And before we knew it, a baby was on the ground.

    Since she came breech- and very quickly at the end, she didn't get squeezed enough and had mucus in her airway.  Massage, positioning and homeopathics got her the help she needed to pull through.  And 5 hours later she is nursing like a champ, with a dearly attentive mama.  All's well on the mountain...welcome Rainy!

     

    Friday
    May252012

    Gifts

    I stepped out onto the back doorstep this morning without noticing anything out of place.  After getting the baby goats some alfalfa hay and goatmilk for breakfast, I returned to the cabin and found this surprise waiting for me.

    I scooped it up and brought it inside for closer examination.  I knew immediately what it was... a gift from our farmcat Taiga2.  Each bead on the string of 7 is the size of a kidney bean.  Of course, I had to open one up to satisfy my curiosity.

    So here's a closeup of a tiny vole fetus... love this stuff!

    Sunday
    May132012

    I'm back!

    After a one year hiatus (sorry I didn't warn you ahead of time), I've returned to log our farm adventures to the world.  Life on the mountain is very very similar to where we left off last May... except for one.remarkable.addition.  

    Our family has been blessed with a sweet and happy baby girl who will be three months old on Wednesday.  Three months already!  Welcome Miekka Kluane... 

    I consciously chose to reserve all my creative energy for growing this child.  And now that we are approaching the end of our fourth trimester together, I'm really pleased with that choice.  No regrets at all.

    Otherwise, I can honestly say that not much has changed.  I'm still milking a zillion goats a day and the chickens are out everywhere.  Ben is gone hunting, and my Mom is here to help everyday.  Interns continue to come and go.  

    Even though we had a tremendous snow year, it somehow didn't set back our growing season.  The first violets have just bloomed on the mountainside, rhubarb is up and the greenhouse is warm.  Life is good.

    Now I'm looking forward to wonder what the next year will bring for our family.  Change is in the air... but which way the wind blows us remains to be seen.  Stay tuned!