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master steward
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I had a dream. There was a group of us chasing down a pack rat (a wood rat). Three of us had shovels. One woman finally cornered the rat and dispatched it. Whew!

Then I woke to the scritch-scratchy sounds of a rodent. It sounded like it was in our bedroom. Paul heard it too, which is how I knew I was no longer dreaming. Ew.

Then, we found that one of our rat traps in the main part of the house had succeeded in dispatching one of them. Nice.

Mike and Violet skinned it. They admired it's health and how the fur didn't have any bare patches like some of the urban critters they had dealt with in the past.

Look away if you're squeamish, or hope you can unsee this somehow if your are - will try to see if this gif load in here.



Attached is a pic of its gorgeous pelt. Violet said she's like to use it for mitten cuffs.



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steward
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wow! this is an awesome looking pelt indeed. How is she planning to process it? (Maybe I should start a new thread)
 
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Nice knife! The pelt is good too, how did it taste?
 
Jocelyn Campbell
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Rick and Adrien, I created a new thread about small animal pelts and copied the pictures and questions there. Mike and Violet said they'd be happy to answer questions though they are out doing projects and not on the computer much, so it might take them a bit.
 
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Hanging up one of the teepees today. You can see the batchbkx burner in the background.
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Sofia and Jesse judging the only real way the quality of their mallets
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jesse markowitz
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A couple of pictures of the shaving horse I made today. This is my first solo woodworking project here. We just need to put in a pin for an axle and its done!

The block the angled board is resting on is the ends to one of the posts on the new wofati.
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jesse markowitz
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Modern art disguised as a table:
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jesse markowitz
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And Sofia's less artistic, but more structurally sound table:
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Jocelyn Campbell
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These "three amigos" are toms that run together in their own little posse. They were patrolling the top of the hugel berm out my window last week.
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three amigos
 
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Weeks ago Sofia was determined to make a wooden bowl before leaving wheaton labs. She was on a woodworking roll with all the experimenting that she and Jesse were pursuing for PEP1 contemplation. I got some blurry pictures of her calmly working away at her task, but the video gives a better feel of what her process was like. Have a look at the link!:

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Jocelyn Campbell
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Those are awesome, Olenka!

Here's my son, Forrest (of mullein spokesmodel fame), next to the rocket mass heater smoker, who not only drove over three passes to come visit in the snow and single-digit (F) temperatures, but also offered to chop firewood or do whatever else might be needed.

Right now, in fact, he is sorting out some rotten potatoes to add to the sheet mulching under the snow. Ah, life on the homestead!
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Olenka Kleban
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In the latest podcast, Paul asks Jocelyn what her perception of a 'Montana winter' was before she came to live here. They mentioned that the weather fluctuates, and generally it's not the "big block of ice" and always "30-bellow" that might be the common perception.

I've been at Wheaton Labs for about 2 months now, first in November and now in January, and the weather is showing itself to be both quite dynamic and moderate at the same time. Fluctuations are always happening, but always with fluidity. Change in the weather doesn't seem to be fickle, but it moves in with ease and moderation.

Temperate. :)

I have a favourite tree that I pass by several times a day by the tipi. It seems that every time I walk by, the tree is obviously different. Sometimes it's the lighting, sometimes it's the precipitation that's accumulated on the needles. Here are photos of my 'Weather Tree' from the yesterday and today.
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steward
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Olenka, you always post so many amazing pictures. I love it.
 
Adrien Lapointe
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Is this a white pine?
 
Olenka Kleban
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YES! It's a white pine sapling.

I had initially mistaken it for a ponderosa pine. Oops!
 
Olenka Kleban
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Here are some different critters in different states around the Lab.



The last one is the strangest thing to me. I've never seen flies out and about while it's snowy outside.
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Olenka Kleban
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This past weekend we had a bustling house! ernie and erica were over, as well as filmists Bryce and Val with Tel, and Zach and Raleigh trekked over from Sage Mountain, and the rest of the current crew at Base Camp: Jason, Sam, Jesse, Rick, Paul, Jocelyn, i я.

It was a day of filming, and pizzas, and pies, and more filming. Lots of ideas were exchanged.
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Olenka Kleban
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piiiiizzzzzaaaaa
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Olenka Kleban
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some post-dinner faces around the house
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Olenka Kleban
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Val moved light
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Olenka Kleban
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Impromptu interview.
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Olenka Kleban
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sitting down to chat
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Olenka Kleban
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Bryce films
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Olenka Kleban
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looking on
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Olenka Kleban
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Zach, Raleigh, and Sam have some fun.
And pie all (almost) gone.
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Olenka Kleban
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around the Lab last week
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Jocelyn Campbell
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Base camp in winter.
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laughing stone
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tiny fungi
 
Jocelyn Campbell
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Trees need to grow in rocks at base camp. Apparently that doesn't always work.

I never seem to tire of the day-glow lichen (is that what this is?) around here.

Zooming in made the rainbow vista a bit blurry but it was lovely.

Made it back home just before another downpour started.
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tree roots in base camp rock
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day-glow lichen
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rainbow view from the top of the volcano
 
Olenka Kleban
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Wolf lichen! I hear Erica is fond of it. I've been picking it off all my firewood for making dye.
 
Jocelyn Campbell
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Olenka Kleban wrote:Wolf lichen! I hear Erica is fond of it. I've been picking it off all my firewood for making dye.



Awesome! I experimented with trying to dye a bit of cotton with it last year because I'd hoped it would make a good dye. I know nothing about good dyeing methods, though, so my meager, pale yellow-green result I didn't take to heart. It would be fun to learn more. And I still want to see what the dye from the oregon grape roots looks like!
 
Olenka Kleban
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This is a delicious loaf of polydough bread, baked by our Jason!
And then he made polydough donuts, but they were so delicious that they were all consumed before any documentation of their existence was captured!
Next will be polydough cinnamon buns! mmmmm mmm mmm mm m m m m m !!!
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Olenka Kleban
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Jesse & River
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Olenka Kleban
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Raleigh and Derick showering the dogs with attention.
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Olenka Kleban
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sweet Sasha
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Olenka Kleban
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and silly Gus!
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Rick Howd
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Olenka Kleban wrote:This is a delicious loaf of polydough bread, baked by our Jason!
And then he made polydough donuts, but they were so delicious that they were all consumed before any documentation of their existence was captured!
Next will be polydough cinnamon buns! mmmmm mmm mmm mm m m m m m !!!




I'd bet that loaf was built in a dutch oven or a 2" cast iron pan in an oven.
 
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Tell me more about " Laughing stone".

Seems like there is a lot of moss there, doesn't that mean that there is water there?

Is the ground water seeping up through the rock formation?

Or just in a shady area that holds rain more than other areas?
 
Olenka Kleban
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Yes, Rick, dutch oven baked!
 
Olenka Kleban
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Chef Seth has been harvesting some food from 'round here. Thank you Tony for your mushroom prep.
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turkey tails
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sunchokes
 
The knights of nee want a shrubbery. And a tiny ad:
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