Tag Archives: Homestead

Summer in full swing

You can tell it’s summertime in Alaska by the smell of birch smoke and salmon in the air-well at my house anyway. Fish to be caught, smoked, canned and enjoyed now with more for later. Salmon is not unique to Alaska but Alaska salmon is unique! Sweet, firm and tasty. ​


Apparently it is not just myself that feels this way as there is an organization devoted to sharing all about how salmon connects Alaskans. Check it out for yourself-it’s a great group with lots of stories, recipes and of course news about salmon. The salmon project can be found here atSalmon project.org

Went to the spring today with my son on our water run. What should take half an hour per trip turned into a two hour adventure. We watched a grouse try to distract us from her babies (look closely in the center of the picture you will see her in the tree), saw many berries forming and the wild flowers were amazing. Our time together wasn’t wasted as we enjoyed it immensely and I have come to realize as my children get older these times together will be fewer. Relish the moments folks for they are fleeting.


Dear hubby turned 61 today. We celebrated with A feast of birch planked salmon, barley pilaf, candied carrots and salad from the greenhouse. Cati baked an amazing chocolate cherry cake but forgot to get a picture before we all gobbled it up.

Working on a new project that I hope will inspire others. I’m beginning to video the things we do here such as fish processing, soap making etc. I’m still a bit camera shy so bear with me as I work through this. Coming soon I promise!

Dear hubby recently was asked by Bore tips to test their gun cleaning swabs and whips. Let me tell you this is something you must check out! The ease of use and compact design is a must for any firearm owner. Easy use, easy clean up, you can take them anywhere which is a bonus if you hunt in an area that’s wet oh and one more bonus-keeping the bore whip in your barrel when transporting ensures you have a safe and clear firearm. Check them out for yourself and volunteer to test their products! You can find them at www.bore-tips.com

Well the fish is almost done smoking (it’s after 3a.m.) and I need to get it in the canning jars and process. I pray your all blessed with a warm bed, fully tummies and the love you deserve. God Bless

The first two years

It’s hard to imagine that we have only been here two years. It feels like forever, with our roots sunk here firmly and our hearts finding a home. Time flies by sometimes seems to stand still.

In the beginning there was nothing but trees, miss, cranberries and willows. From that we have built our home. A few sheets of OSB being the exception all the other lumber was milked right here from our own trees.

The day I turned and seen this view was the day I found my place. I will never tire of this view.

Everyone including the kids worked tirelessly to get the cabin built. Long days for sure but so rewarding! 

 I’m Simply amazed at how the kids have grown

Look at them now! 


I often wonder if I will ever get a picture of Cami without a hat on! 

We have come a long way in the last couple of years and I look forward to many more. 

Not complete by any means but it’s home. 

God Bless all and thank you for letting me share our world. Time to go see if there’s any new additions! See you soon.

Mom cape time again!

There are days when I feel like super woman, well alright maybe not superwoman perhaps super mom. Thank heavens my apron quickly converts to my MOM cape for emergencies like today. While fixing breakfast (yes I’m a redneck so we “fix” breakfast) I hear a goat holler. Now for those of you who have never been around goats they are much like kids. You can just tell when a normal blabber or bleat in this case is not just a “I want attention” but instead is more like a “I’ve got myself in big trouble please come quick”. So back to the goat hollering, I just knew this was a hurry up situation and began following the cries for help. Sure enough Bandit had thought it would be a great idea to steal from the piggy dish by sticking her head through a 4 inch gap in the boards. Well now this may not have been an issue except for a couple crucial things she didn’t account for. First off her horn spread is 6 inches, secondly there are 5 pigs in the pen she chose who haven’t yet tasted goat but are willing to eat everything placed in their dishes including a goat head attached to a much alive goat. The only thing that stopped them was their curiosity at the loud bellering going on. Now mind you I’m still in my pajamas, I pulled on my work boots quickly before running outside but other than that I was not prepared to be in a pig pen full of muck. With a quick swish of the mom cape I got in the pig pen which of course made said piggies curious as to why I was in there fiddling with a goats head and now it was I-not the goat who was bellering. Yep, I was in over my head and needed help so I started hollering for dear hubby, hollering at the pigs to get their snouts out of my ears and hair and hollering because they thought it was the perfect time to jump, splash and play with mom. Once dear hubby got there he was worried about saving me from the pigs but as I quickly explained, well alright screeched-he understood they were just curious and playing not attacking me so back to the black goat who was once again bellering at the top of her lungs to be freed. I grabbed her nose and horns and started twisting when I finally had her lined up to exit I told him to pull and she was free. She was a bit scraped up but no serious injuries and we were both covered head to toe with pig muck. Wiping off as best as I could with the “mom cape” I then washed up a bit in an icy water hole before going in and taking the wonderful pig aroma with me. Of course dear son wakes up just as I’m coming in the door and asks why I smell like a wet goat covered in pig poop-of course I replied “new beauty regime” discussion over! 

Once cleaned up and breakfast finished-homemade cake donuts take awhile-I decided that due to the recent events coupled with the fact I had little sleep because my dear hubby was trying to call in every bear, moose and wolf in his sleep by imitating a logger with a chainsaw-yes he snores that loudly-I was well prepared to take the day off and crawl back in bed. Right! Best laid plans! I then remembered I had the cow tongue chilling that I cooked day before and I needed to peel and grind, a turkey that was in the smoker awaiting it’s cooking to finish,beef bones to simmer ( the tongue and bones were given to me when a friend butchered a cow) and a list 2 arm lengths long of things that needed done like pig food to cook, kids school work and pens to inspect, clean etc. 

by 1 p.m. I had finished with the dishes, splitting wood as I was running low (yes there’s wood in the shed but that’s for rainy days) hubby and kids just returned from cutting straw for all the pens so were all hungry. A quick sandwich of cows tongue made all happy, turkey was in the oven, bones simmering, now it was time to turn my attention to the critter pens while running back and forth to the cabin to keep the fire stoked and watch so the turkey nor the pig food cooking would burn. I do believe I ran just short of a 5k by this time.

4 p.m. Coffee break time! As I sneak in to have a quick cup in the quiet I almost made it to the door when my dog starts whining. Mr. Tom T.Turkey has her cornered and is once again trying to woo her. I save her from the amorous turkey by picking him up as he calls out his love gobbles while she makes a bee line to the cabin. Thinking of her making a bee line reminded me I needed to check my bee hives and in my tired state I almost opened them up without my gear on. There’s buzzing in the boxes so I let them be and hopefully will have a few minutes tomorrow to get them some food to carry them through until the thaw.

Back to my coffee break! By this time I’m on a mission! As I head back to the cabin the twin goat babies are crying for momma who has left them to go graze while they were napping and now we’re up and hungry. Not wanting an eagle or bear to hear the commotion I scoop up one under each arm and drag them back to the cabin and plop them down with Missy the wonder dog who begins giving them a tongue bath which makes them quite happy as she is their second momma, I cut myself a cup of coffee-by this time it was almost that strong from sitting on the stove perking away while I chased critters and my own tail around and realized third sip in that supper needed fixing. 

By 8 p.m. Supper done, another batch of pig food done for morning, dishes washed and it’s time to call it a day. Yep, just another quiet day on Two Moose Farm!

I’ll leave you with a few random pics as is my norm and a a prayer to God to provide for your every need. God Bless All 


Christmas Eve 2015 on Two Moose Farm

It’s a chilly 15 degrees out but the fire in the stove is keeping us all warm. Soon the aroma of sage, cinnamon and cloves will fill the air as pies bake and dressing is made. Yes in our home food is important and tradition must be followed. 

Tradition. I didn’t realize until a couple of days ago just how important it has become to my children but my eyes were opened when I mentioned instead of making my traditional cornbread dressing I would try a simple stuffing. You could of heard a pin drop. Suddenly my noisy, chatterbox children ceased all activities and stood there staring at me like I had just sprouted a tree from my forehead. Cati was the first to speak up and asked “why”? I told her I thought maybe they would enjoy something different but was quickly reminded that there were only 2 days of the year that I made cornbread dressing and how could I think of cutting out one of those days. She then went on to say and how will we have our Christmas scrapple if you don’t make dressing? I will be making dressing and we will have our Christmas scrapple.

I’m sure your wondering what we do as far as gifting for Christmas. It’s quite simple-we don’t. Finances don’t allow for any luxuries but that doesn’t mean my children go without. Aunt Cathy spoils them and they did recieve gifts from a secret Santa but they learned long ago that Christmas isn’t about spending lots of money to buy things that will soon be forgotten, Christmas is a time for remembering the birth of our Savior. I am truly blessed that my kids get it. They don’t expect, they don’t demand they are grateful for the simple things and thankful for tradition. 

Another tradition we started last year here on the homestead was “building” a Christmas tree. Not having much room we have to be creative. This year our “tree” is made with twigs and decorated with fishing tackle, spent shot gun shells and fly tying yarn. We hung it from the ceiling over the table. The entire family took part and it was a slow start (Caleb dislikes crafts immensely) but when I asked him to provide his shotgun shell casings he suddenly got in the spirit! My kids are growing so fast and when they are grown I think the time spent together doing things like this is what I will miss the most. 

 You have heard me mention our friends Dan and Robin before and how Robin hatched out some chicks for us. Dan and Robin are doing well and on the outside in Texas for a few months enjoying warmer weather but their son Brandon and his family are still here. I was contacted by Brandon and his wife Joyce because their chickens hatched out early fall decided to be roosters. They gifted us 7 birds that are destined for freezer camp even though it will be difficult to part with them. They are beautiful birds. Now to the point of my long winded story-while picking up the Roos Brandon’s daughter Courtney asked if we wanted a duck. They had one too many drakes and he was too cute to say no-yes Ducks can be cute. Brandon stated he had been well fed and should be good eating gasp how could I eat him he is too cute. I made it clear to Courtney that he would have a happy life and I would find him a mate to spend it with when Brandon interjects “grab that extra hen and then they will have a pair” so now you know the story of how Quackers (the drake) and Cheese (the hen) came to Two Moose Farm. Thank you again Brandon,Courtney and Joyce! 

 Dear hubby and the kids are working on our snow machine that was given too us. A gentleman who visited out here last year asked if we would like it even though it needed some tlc from years of sitting. Caleb and Mike hauled it in and dear hubby and Cati have been working on it-it should be ready for the trail soon and that’s very exciting as the snow is beginning to pile up. We are so blessed that others think of us and give so willingly. Yes to some they may see that machine as old and worn out but to us it is new and a huge blessing. I’m am so truly blessed by having a husband who can fix or create something out of nothing and the kids are learning so much. Life is good! 

Well it’s time to get another pot of coffee going as it will be a long day but I’ll leave you all with a prayer of peace and goodwill.  

 Merry Christmas!!!!

Pictures Pictures Pictures!

I finally found dear Hubby’s Kodak digital camera and today after the chores were done I played with shutting off the auto mode and using different shudder speeds, filters etc.  I had a lot of fun and wanted to share the pics.  Of course there is no way I can begin to capture the beauty of this place but it gives you an idea.  Also you will note most of the pictures I take are of the view I see each day of Mount Illiamna that is across Cook Inlet. I am still mesmerized by its beauty every time I look at it.mountain cropped-mountain.jpg100_0555 (3) cropped-100_0551-31.jpg 100_0551 (3) 100_0555 (2) 100_0547 (2)100_0564 (2)100_0580

Off course no picture taking day would be complete without kids and critters!

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Not perfect by far but much better than my phone!  I look forward to taking many more as we begin seeing signs of spring.  When that will be is any ones guess as it is currently 26 degrees and starting to snow.

I did take time to call the postal service in Anchorage today.  I was worried over my chicks that are to arrive tomorrow and spoke to a very nice woman who assured me that the chicks were alive and well an headed here tomorrow in the CAB of the truck.  She was horrified when she heard the entire story about what has transpired with the other chicks over the last 3 weeks.  I also informed her about the very rude gentleman that I had the unfortunate call with at their customer service call center.  She was appalled that anyone would behave so badly.  I did take the opportunity though to tell her what awesome ladies we have in our local post office who work so hard to get things done in a timely manner.

Chicks should be here at 6:30 in the morning and yes I am excited!  The 4 I have now that are 3 weeks old have become my little buddies and soon they will be going outside but not to the chicken tractor like any common chicken-nope they will be in their own little sheltered area (a large netting enclosure) so they stay close enough to visit and enjoy their morning coffee with me.

The brooder is working great, it has been a week now with no glitches.  I will begin construction of an incubator in the next day or so and after I have it stabilized will be hatching chicks for resell and also some to fatten for butchering.

Work is steadily progressing on the bunny barns and I will be showing photos of those soon.  Always work to be done on Two Moose Farm but I have to say that it is much fun.

If your a facebooker please join us at https://www.facebook.com/offgridalaska and share what is happening in your life.

May God Bless each and every one of you in your endeavors and I pray that you find happiness in all that you do.

Update on our chicks

Sadly I have to tell you all of our chicks died.  It was a good fight though and I believe that had they been from another producer they may not have made it as far as they did.  Ideal poultry already answered my message and let me know they would be replaced.   I did inform hem that I didn’t believe it was their fault but still they tell me they will replace them.  What a great company!

Our Woodmizer 15 Sawmill


Out here hauling lumber is impractical as the only time it could be done is winter.  Our practical solution was to purchase a sawmill and even though it took a lot of work and many hours we finally got it out here and have put it to work.

This sawmill is a workhorse and very economical to run as it will run for 8 hours on 2 gallons of gas.  With all the trees we have here (many standing dead or laying on top of each other from a windstorm many years ago) having a sawmill just makes sense.

Here is a video of the sawmill running.  It can be ran by one man but is much quicker when 2 are working together cutting and stacking.

Mike and Papa Fred Milling Lumber


We have used the woodmizer15 to mill lumber for our cabin, outbuildings and even furniture.





Everything here at Two Moose is a family affair.  We are so very blessed to live in this beautiful country.