Goot Ingredients

Day Twelve: The Powers of GOOT

Creamy GOOT In my search for whole food recipes and ways to eat and stay healthy, I stumbled upon the uniquely interesting powers of GOOT or garlic oil treatment. Mainly garlic blended with extra virgin olive oil and coconut oil,  GOOT is a tasty way to ab...
Orange Chamomile Tea

Day 11: Raw Tea

I collected orange peel from oranges eaten throughout the week, I kept the peel in a mason jar in the fridge to keep them smelling fresh until I used them. The unused ginger was chopped into small pieces and put on a baking sheet with the orange peel. Drying t...
jen

Stock of a Gun

Stock of the gun pressed firmly into my shoulder, below clavicle, seated in the soft flesh of my shoulder. I held my hand above the trigger and my eye down the sights as a brief image of where the clay pigeon would fly sprung into my minds eye the way a startl...
Lamp aflame

Day Ten: Mason Jar Oil Lamps

Lamps are not a luxury, they are a necessity. Living off grid there are few things we can live without, the oil lamps that light both the early and late winter mornings, the flames that light the evenings when the generator runs out of gas are those that are m...
lamp

A Natural Home

The smell of fresh soil and the rough touch of branches means freedom. The stress of life seems to wilt when I have nature filling every sense. The feeling of relaxation that overcomes me when I am surrounded by nature is a feeling I have tried so very hard to...
Poor sick Phin

Day Nine: A Cold Remedy

Remedy the oncoming stuffy noses, running noses, head aches, sore throats, coughing. All I hear are muffled coughs and people sniffing their mucus back into their noses. Gross. Everyone just seems to be so sick. So before I come down with sickness myself, I ha...
dipped twice

Day Eight: Spruce Cone Fire Starters

She collected the future fire starters with a rigor and excitement that could not be found in any person I have known. Mia-Aurora, named for the natural phenomenon that brings spirit to our soul as we watch it dance, she reflects the wonder and awe f...
Ready to soak

Day Seven: Sprouting Seeds

Tiny white arms reached from the mung beans, they had begun to sprout. I had started this project of sprouting  seeds as a way to give variety to our Paleo diet, I hadn't expected shoots so soon! Kit for sprouting Someone experienced could say I cheated...
Zoe Composting

Day Six: Composting

The pail was overflowing with leftovers uneaten and banana peals, we were careful when we scraped plates into the bucket that no meat was thrown in. We started composting and dumping it over the frozen ground that would be the garden in the summer. With the fr...
Phin planting our herbs

Day Five: Starting Seeds

It is time to plant the seeds when the sun brings heat back to us with confident rays. With the hope that we might have a garden this summer, the seeds must be planted indoors if they are to last the cool Alaska summers. With recycled egg cartins, tins, flower...
Mending

Day four: The Art of Mending

I searched through the pile of sweaters and cardigans looking for just one without a small hole or snag to large to hide. Not a single knit sweater I owned was safe to wear in public. There are two problems with people like me who live in cold weather, you're ...
Laundry Soap

Day Three: Making Our Own Laundry Detergent

Borax, stain bar, Arm & Hammer laundry suds, bucket, rosemary and mint seasoned salts, there is nothing better than making laundry soap with the smells I love most. It isn't complicated nor does it take that much time, Walmart carried everything I needed. ...
finished toothpaste

Day Two: Homemade Toothpaste

The kind of toothpaste you won't eat, is my homemade kind. Regular toothpaste seems to be the first thing that you children seem to eat, way before real food. I can tell how often it's eaten out of the tube by the state of the attacked tube and how much t...
Apple Ketchup ready to be stored

Day One: Apple Ketchup

The pile of ketchup was growing and he didn't seem to have a limit as to how much he would flavor the poor eggs that were lost at the bottom of that pile. Dad, was always a fan of ketchup. With the lifestyle change to Paleo and clean eating, ketchup was guilty...
Creative play

Creative Play

His stories built castles with dragons in far off lands he could only reach through portals. When they played outside alone, I could hear them whispering their tale of imagination as it spun a new web of fantasy. Entertainment in this house does not revolve ar...
Dad with Aria

To My Children, Love Your Mother

My Dear Children, As I sit and peer into the beautiful face of your sweet new sister, I'm in awe of her peacefulness, her perfection. I ponder, What is it about new life that brings hymns and lullaby to the lips of all whom behold? What is it about their dain...
Books to be used for off grid crafts

100 Days of Activities for Simply Living Off Grid

Off grid living has fine tuned skills and pushed me to expand my knowledge for the purpose of having a more wholesome livelihood attuned to the lifestyle that we have chose here. The sun rose above the treeline and brought promise to the crisp winter day. The ...
Spruce hens

French Spruce Hen

I glared at the wine colored flesh of fresh spruce hen laying nonchalantly in the bowl, the breast still attached to the rib cage. To say the least, after attempting to cook authentic French cuisine for almost two hours I was not impressed with having to carve...
Zeek working on his aim in archery

The Starving Mind: The Lack Of Hobbies

I stared at the stack of unfinished projects leering at my lack of accomplishment. I looked down at the new teal wool yarn that bragged promise of a new entertainment. I had a guilty feeling that I should take out one of the other projects and begin again, but...
The quilt

Just a Quilt

Living behind the walls of quilted insulation and heavy materials. A thin 20 year old quilt failed to reliably place my over imaginative mind at ease as I slide into bed. But, most times I simply was too tired to even care and the wood stove kept me plenty war...
mia and treebeard

Surrendering Prejudices

I have surrendered ideas of perfection, I surrender any notions of how things are going to go and leave my mind open for the chance learn from a new experience. I've left behind my prejudices towards natures vulgar ways and  expect that it will be wet and dirt...
frozen hidaway

Losing Inhibitions and Falling Into Nature

I looked on at  the housing developments poorly placed on the outskirts of desolate pastures and isolated by the woods. Each house was only a pumpkin vine away from each neighbor. They lived in the country, but yet they choose to live within the confinements o...
extracts

From Scratch

The chopped cranberries stained my fingers as I continued to pile them into the mason jar, if only I had known before, we would never have bought extracts. I placed a handful (12 to be precise) in a cup of water, so that the skins might wrinkle and shrivel off...
drying lichen

Lichen Tincture

The woods laid out before me is the garden in which I find my herds and medicinal plants. Just wandering among the trees I can find a multitude of useful plants just waiting for a new purpose. Supplies needed I pulled the lichen fibers apart that the ch...
Golden tea mug

“Golden Milk”

The Starbucks coffee lingered in my hand as I attempted to sallow the coffee flavored sugar, after going on the Paleo diet my taste buds were no longer accustomed to the taste of sugar, and at times it's overpowering. I suppose I used to drink these things bec...
The Boys and Lichen

Foraging For Adventure

The last of the afternoon sun split a paths through the trees with its rays as a last effort to illuminate the woods. Aurora's small hand in mine pulled mine towards the "Ghost Trees" someplace hidden among the other trees. Her short legs catching every stray ...
Aria

To My Sister

Little faces and hands pressed against the windows. Their breath forming upon the glass and their grubby hands smearing grime across the window.  Aria, my sweet baby sister they can't seem to wait much longer for you, there just seems to be no end to the waiti...
baby

And so you are named

My New Born Daughter, There are too few surprises in this short life. The kind of surprise that stirs the soul to great joy. Announcing you, our 6th daughter and 12th child to your mom yesterday was one of these moments. In our family, names are revealed th...
Clothes line

Laundry: The Less Than “Ideal” Chore

The chair creaked under my weight as I struggled to stay on my toes as I reached for the clothes line. Standing so close to the wood stove and so much closer to the ceiling made the work much harder as the intense warmth radiated off the stove. I doubled up th...
Fire

The Fiery Warmth of Home

The flames gnawed at the small split spruce, my legs curled up under me as sat beside the stove feeding it small pieces. Days when the cold killed the will to be outside and made shivers run over my skin, I split tiny pieces no bigger than my thumb to start th...