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Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Baby Elk

We had a request to post a photo of a baby elk and after going through many photos I couldn't find one but this one has  a young elk on the left in the photo. We once had a single cow elk that was hanging around all alone and as it turned out she gave birth up behind the house but she was not part of the herd. Even though she gave birth here we didn't see the elk baby as she kept it pretty secret. What we saw were small hoof prints to indicate they were around but she did not choose to share her baby like some of the deer have done in the past.

Monday, December 5, 2016

Loyalty

I received this photo in an email today from a friend. Animals grieve too while still being loyal to their friend... This photo moved me and I thought it worthy to share with viewers.

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Standing Rock Sioux Protesting For Water Rights.

Part two of the Standing Rock Sioux was published live before I thought it would. The blog may be read on Mother Earth News web site at: http://www.motherearthnews.com/nature-and-environment/standing-rock-sioux-defend-right-to-clean-waterpart-two
This conflict seems to currently be escalating to a physical confrontation which will be a modern day tragedy in my opinion. It needs to be peacefully resolved but the government has taken a back seat in this matter and the mainstream media has not given it the attention it deserves.
I want to thank my good friend Sakoieta for collaborating with me on this issue. His help was invaluable and I am so thankful for a friend like him to help me out and present the matter objectively.  

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Mother Earth Blog sites and the web site are full of good information but for those who subscribe to the magazine there is much more: Mother news, letters to the editor, green gazette,firsthand reports, gardeners table, homestead hacks and much more.
Consider a subscription for friends, family or maybe yourself. A subscription to Mother Earth News is a thoughtful gift that gives all year long.
To subscribe go to:  https://www.motherearthnews.com/store/Offer/EMEBGGAC

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Standing Rock Protest

Check out the latest blog for Mother Earth News regarding Standing Rock Sioux protest at the following link: http://www.motherearthnews.com/nature-and-environment/standing-rock-protestpart-one

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Bozwell Hotspots

Resolving skin issues in canines is probably the most challenging problem a dog parent can face. We tried different dog foods and finally decided it was not a food allergy. We went back and looked at his extensive allergy testing and down at the bottom of one page was a word we didn't recognize that he was allergic to. Turns out it is dust mites. We put him on Fresh Alaska Salmon Oil capsules and bought numerous anti allergy treatment for the house. It is pretty expensive but all those hot spots on his legs and belly have healed up now. He is acting more normal and we hope we have the solution finally.

Skin issues are a baffling challenge in canines but if this works it was worth the effort and perseverance to give him some relief. The Alaska Salmon Oil is pretty expensive for a 30 day supply but it is doing wonders for him so far. We just ordered our second bottle through Amazon.com. Fingers crossed for Bozwell that we finally have his problem figured out........

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

New Book

We were asked to participate in a new book that Anna Twitto wrote about self sufficient living. Anna is a superb author and her book can be found in either Kindle or print form at:  :https://www.amazon.com/…/B01MXNXP…/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1
Not just because we are in the book but because it is so informative and easy reading do I recommend it. Anna lives in Israel and homesteads there. I highly recommend her book and appreciate her asking us to be a part of it.

Monday, November 21, 2016

A Little Privacy Please

There was a photo right after this one that would indicate that next fall there will be a baby elk from this union. I chose not to post it because I don't want to offend anyone or disturb children who may see the blog. After all the sex life of an elk should be kept private. If they wanted to share it with everyone they would have gone more public themselves.

Now that it is colder the batteries in the trail camera don't last as long so I have taken it down until next spring. This was the last herd of elk that have passed through in the last three weeks anyway so the animals have headed down the mountain to the meadows where there is more abundant food for them.

I have saved some photos that I will post over the coming months that were captured on the trail camera.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

The Culvert

We have a spring that runs all year long that comes from deep in the mountain on our property. It runs down a gully it has formed over the years into a ditch by the road that runs past our house and then down the ditch to a culvert that runs under the road. Where it runs out of the culvert it soaks into the ground and that is the end of its destination. One year it backed up about half way to its destination and the ice was 4-5' deep where it formed an ice dam. The spring is still running so water was running down this big chunk of ice.....which will get bigger!







Charity Firewood

 With no snow yet we have been able to continue to work outside on firewood for the local charity. Our forecast does call for snow next week so it is doubtful that they will be able to come for it before the snow prevents it this year. We have a leg up for next year though.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Firewood

It is that time of year where the wood stove is kept going all day long. Amazing how fast we go through firewood when it doesn't warm up outside during the daytime. Low 40's during the day and down to the 20's during the night. Between what is in the photo there are another 6 cords of firewood in the shed, dry, split and ready to go.

What is alarming is that we have not had any snow to speak of this year. We had 1" in September but nothing since. I checked our log and last year at this time we had a total accumulation of 26" already. It is powder dry outside and hence presents a potential wildfire hazard for us. The best chance we have for snow is Thursday and that is only a 10% chance which usually means no snow. According to the Farmers Almanac this month is right on target with cold temps, blustery and no snow expected until next month. Snow and the moisture it provides is what we count on for the needed moisture to see us through the spring, summer and fall seasons. While most folks dread the advent of snow we actually welcome it for the moisture it provides.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Night Photo

 Night shots of what appears to be a coyote passing by the trail camera.

Friday, November 11, 2016

Elk Games

Ring around the rosie...... and this is getting tiring so we need to quit going around this tree.....

Thursday, November 10, 2016

I See That Camera

 I see that camera - you can't fool me...
With the strong winds we have had this paper wasp nest was blown out of a tree and was laying on the ground abandoned.

We have found out that a child we sponsor in Honduras has dropped out of school at age 16 and gone to work. This was a child with hopes to be an industrial engineer and get himself and his mother out of poverty. Typical of so many children he had hopes and dreams but his father abandon his mother and himself and so they could make ends meet he went to work. I started to work at age 13, but was able to continue my education and work so I empathize with him.

We were able to sponsor him and the organization (Children's International) provided him dental care, health care, school supplies and shoes and clothing as well as personal hygiene items. Our donation was $25.00, a month and it was used wisely by the organization. I just went back and read his letters to us and he liked to play soccer and he played in his school band. It is doubtful that he will return to school and will now most likely work in a local factory. We are heart broken for him as he is such a good boy who now has been thrust into the work force to survive. He is like so many children that miss much of their childhood due to the environment they live in.

If readers can find it in their heart to  sponsor a child in a far away country you will find through correspondence with them that you will be rewarded greatly as they are so thankful for every little item they receive through the organization. www.children@children.org

Friday, November 4, 2016

Another Load Of Firewood


Nick from LaPuente just left and had a full load of firewood for those who will need it to stay warm this winter. I give them the dry wood that is ready to burn. I cut this load and put it next to the road for ease of loading. Nick had not cut a tree down so it wasn't hard to find a nice convenient tree for him to learn on. I told him how to do it and he did so perfectly. We then took a walk around the property for him  to get the lay of the land and survey the dead standing. These young people that volunteer for LaPuente have all been nice people and Nick is certainly no exception.

I'll be looking forward to working with him and Becca over the next few months  until he will move on and his replacement will arrive. For me it is just rewarding to know that what we have will go to good use and not just rot in place...

Trail Camera Photo


Trail cameras are pretty nifty inasmuch as they catch the animal/s naturally and unaware of having their photo taken. This herd of elk was just moving through and happened to be on the right side of the camera.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Meet Lucas The Wolf

On a visit to the Wolf Refuge near Silvercliffe, CO we suddenly decided to sponsor Lucas the wolf. Maybe one of the best decisions we have made based upon what Lucas taught us. Check out the blog at the following site: http://www.motherearthnews.com/nature-and-environment/leadership-qualities-of-an-alpha-wolf
While Lucas has since passed away I'm sure when you read about him you will come to admire him as much as we do...

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

More Elk Photos

What I really like about trail camera's is they catch animals in their natural surroundings acting natural. When I try to get a photo with my camera I either get a shot of their rear end or they are looking at me. Not so with trail cameras - the animal never knows it has been photographed.
Enjoy the animal photos now as very soon they will be gone and then it will be snow photos. I remember 12 years ago that we had 3' of snow on election day which is why we vote by mail in ballot now.

Monday, October 31, 2016

Mountain Wind

 Windy today and trees are thrashing around to the point it is dangerous to go outside on our heavily wooded mountain side. What many don't know is that this time of year and often in the winter we get strong winds.  During winter the wind blows the snow into deep drifts in places and bare ground in others.
Watch for my next blog on Mother Earth News about Lucas the wolf. Lucas was a unique alpha wolf that taught me much about leadership and being a pack leader.

Group Photo

"Hey guys, there is a trail camera over here - want your picture taken" "Lets get a group shot"......

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Accumulating Firewood To Give Away

We recently had very strong winds that blew down over 20 dead trees so we have been busy cutting them up to donate to a local charity that hands out firewood to those who can't afford it nor able to cut it themselves. While we are both still able bodied and can cut and haul firewood we will do so and put it at the end of our driveway for easy pick up by the charity. We are happy to rid ourselves of dead trees and the wildfire hazard they create and doubly happy that others can benefit from from it.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Canine Allergies

Latest blog for Mother Earth News about canine food allergies.
http://www.motherearthnews.com/nature-and-environment/canine-food-allergies-zbcz1610

Trail Camera Funny Photos

 Found the perfect tree for those itchy antlers...
 Sister watching the antler/tree antics while getting a little nourishment....
 OMG is that a spider?????
Almost done, just a little velvet left...

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Love Is Having The Right Tree

"I just love this little tree"  It smells so good - reminds me of Christmas".  "I wonder if Santa will come back this year"......

Photo Op

"Oh good, he has the camera out, time for a photo op".  "Cheese"

Monday, October 24, 2016

Bobcat

While I was fixing the dogs breakfast this morning I looked up and there outside the window about 12-15 feet away was a bobcat looking in at me. The above photo is from Google images as I was not able to get a picture from inside. The cat was probably 20 pounds and with much more fur than the one in the photo. We see tracks from them but rarely a sighting as they are pretty allusive. This one was just walking up the tractor trail watching me through the window like he was used to seeing people. Just a casual stroll past the window. He/she was beautiful and when I let the dogs out after they ate they never raised a nose so must not have smelled him at all. Unusual to have one that close to the house and just leisurely walk by a few feet away.

I called Carol to come see it but she was at the front window where a raptor had just flew up from the front yard. Since it was going away she could not tell what it was other than it was a big bird and not a raven. She did get to see the bobcat walk on down the trail. When we walk out our door we never know what we may find outside.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Recent Trail Camera Photos

 Mom and teenager... Mom is trying to tell him how to stay safe in a world where they are hunted by other animals and people and he is focused on a squirrel... Some things are universal....
Peek a boo.....

Friday, October 21, 2016

Trail Camera Photos

 You really never know what will show up when you check the trail camera. We have assorted animals around all the time and for the most part never see them without benefit of the trail camera.
Pffffttttt

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Bozwell

Watch for a new blog on Mother Earth News under 'Nature and Environment' about Bozwell and his challenging food allergies. He is now on antibiotics and being treated with neem oil each day. Another food for him with less ingredients may hold hope for him and he seems to like it. Purina lamb and rice. He is acting like he feels better today....the blog is scheduled to go live Monday...

Monday, October 17, 2016

Holy Mother Of Winds

 Winds have been blowing (est) 40-50+ MPH today. Above live tree blew down across the driveway and I have already pushed one out of the road. A friend asked if I would check and see if his house had been serviced for winter and I was pretty scared to drive over to his house. There were at least 5 trees blown down on our road but you can get around them. There were several blown down on the road leading to his house too but I could get around them.
 I walked down the trail and found two trees across the trail and about 15 or more at various places down. I heard another one fall and it sounded big so I headed back to the house. I can't remember how long it has been since we have had wind like this. Trees are falling in the strong wind - both live and dead trees, almost constantly. Glad I have a workable chain saw to cut the one on the driveway up. The rest will have to wait until this wind subsides as it is just to dangerous to be out there now.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Heading Over The Mountain

Heading over the mountain but stopping at the trail camera for a photo op....

Friday, October 14, 2016

Firewood Crew


Last Sunday a neighbor I didn't know I had (Ben) came by the house looking for his lot. Many of the markers are buried under downed trees and lost so it can be hard to find your lot if you don't have markers. I went with his nice family down the road and we found his lot with the aid of a map of our section. During conversation he mentioned he would like to get some of the downed trees off his lot and was I interested. I have 11 acres of trees so I wasn't interested but it suddenly dawned on me that La Puente (the charity) was coming out next Friday to cut firewood off our property. I suggested he allow them to cut some of the firewood and he readily accepted. They will come again to cut firewood off our property but this will help him out where he can park his camper on his lot.


Here is the La Puente crew that cut a trailer load off his property and they left with a full load. There were 17 middle school children, 5 adults and myself. I cut the down trees up and the children carried the logs out to the trailer and loaded them. With the small load I had brought down by the driveway they left (all but one) with a full load of firewood to help keep people warm this winter.

The one that was unable to leave was John whose vehicle would not start. He ended up calling a tow truck to take it to Alamosa for repair so he spent most of the afternoon with us. What a pleasant day for me having another adult male to talk to and young kids to work with. These kids are delightful and I think the funniest part of the day was as follows: I had just cut a log to be hauled off and one of the girls called to another girl to have two of the boys come get it as it was heavy. That girl gave her a look that words can't capture and told her they could move more and heavier logs than the boys so why call them. They did move the log with ease and I didn't want to laugh and hurt their feelings or give them the wrong impression but was laughing heartily on the inside. When those girls grow up to adults they are going to be someone to reckon with. Made me happy to hear that happen.

People who can't afford firewood will stay warm this winter thanks to La Puente and these hard working youngsters and their adult chaperones. This group was from the Boulder area and nicer kids or adults couldn't be found. It was delightful for me to be with them today and to provide the needy with firewood in an area where -20 in the winter is not uncommon.  It has been an interesting day and all should sleep well tonight. I'm not sure who benefits more - me or those who get the firewood. I sure enjoy having these youngsters - if only for a few hours, to be around.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Trail Camera Photos

 We haven't seen any elk in the past two weeks and suspect they have gone over to the other side of the mountain where the meadow is lush and green. It was nice they passed through our area for a photo shoot.
 After almost 150 trail camera photos it appeared having the camera up for over three weeks was long enough so we took the memory card out and down loaded the photos it captured. Looks like I had the camera situated in the right place this time.