Michaelyn Erickson

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since Jul 05, 2015
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Recent posts by Michaelyn Erickson

If folks are interested in raising sheep for just wool, it's totally possible...I do this. The key is to stick to your scale and figure out a lifestyle that works for you. We are a vegan homestead in western WA where I have several sanctuary wethers. Choosing this type of sheep raising cuts out the possibility of lambs, but that also cuts down the amount of work and resources that you're dumping into sheep breeding (which is something I just don't want to do), plus I am rescuing them from slaughter rather than making more lives to end. With my few sheep that don't multiply, they keep my landscape well trimmed, require no grain, and give a wool harvest once or twice a year. I am getting more wool than I can process and while I haven't pursued selling it I know that I could make enough to fund whatever resources I do put into my wethers. I believe there is a way for animals to be present and active on the homestead or farm without having to pay their dues in their own flesh.

Sticking to your scale to me means that you don't acquire more animals than your landscape can support...I only have five acres and if I had a dozen sheep they'd eat it to dirt and I'd have to buy food. One (make that two, they shouldn't ever be alone) will provide a homestead family with enough wool for yearly Christmas sweaters and then some. Plus, the dirtiest wool not fit for spinning makes great mulch and lasagna compost material.
2 years ago
Hi all, so I am wondering about this new company that keeps sending me emails and such. I have always dreamed of taking our homestead off-grid but knew that it was going to be a number of years down the line before we could invest in our own solar system. We run a glass shop out of our home and it's our bread and butter right now, so we need some electricity for our kilns (working on off-grid glass setup). In the meanwhile, how do people feel about the Renewable Energy Certificate system? Arcadia Power allows everyone in the country to purchase R.E.C's with their KWh usage for .01/Kwh from wind farms across the country. So, they track your usage amount and purchase the corresponding amount of REC's for you; you get to watch where they buy the wind power from through a widget on your computer.

I'm just wondering how much good the REC system is doing, and what people think about this? Thanks!
2 years ago

Paracelsus McCoy wrote:What's the alcohol percentage? If it is 95% alcohol, then it is not a problem to add some to a wax or oil base. If it's more, you can risk growing botulism when you add it to the oil or wax, since the droplets will be sealed from air. It shouldn't matter too much for a salve, but you would have to be careful that the person had no cuts or scratches where the salve was applied; otherwise, they might get wound botulism. Personally, I would warm macerate the herb in oil, strain, and use that. I have found that a rice cooker on warm is great for doing that. Just be sure to keep inside condensation wiped off or leave the lid off. A lidded jar in the sun works good this time of year too.



Could you please (or someone) explain a bit more about the risk of botulism in tincture-salve? Are you saying that if the alcohol percentage is ABOVE %95 percent you could get botulism? It seems to me that the addition of a high-potency alcohol, or a tincture rather than an oil infusion, would lower your risk of botulism. Isn't that bacteria coming from the plants themselves? It is my understanding that oil infusions could potentially harbor this because of the of the plant material already having it and then it getting transferred to the oil (so by that logic then all oil infusions are at a slight risk)...but a tincture? Alcohol doesn't just kill it?
I am getting ready to produce a salve that we are selling, so I'd like to make sure that I know a bit about these risks.
3 years ago
This reminds me of a video I saw a long time ago with a cob structure, cob oven/hot tub that I thought was so extremely cool. An improvement upon it would be to heat it all with a rocket stove!! Cob sealed with linseed oil may make a wonderful tub! I know you wouldn't be able to move it, and I know that many are scared to put clay and water together...but I'd be inclined to give it a shot. How gorgeous is this?



Cob Hot Tub Video
3 years ago