my foraging

Foraging was a success yesterday! My best friend Maya and I didn’t find a lot but we found enough. Lobster mushrooms, slippery jacks, and one single cute wee puffball. We found some boletes we weren’t familiar with too, took a few home to identify and test. I also gathered some old mans beard moss.

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okey dokey, picked some chestnuts yesterday!!!! They are the edible ones and they’re so delicious🙊 I’m going to roast them in the oven. I collected the ones that were on the ground. unlike horsechestnuts these have a very prickly (or thorny?? what’s the right word?) casings. so it’s very difficult to take out the chestnut if you don’t have gloves, and I didn’t have any gloves!! saved four of them in the refrigerator to plant later, I’m gonna eat the rest🙈👏🏼 if any of you have tips/recommendations about growing chestnuts let me know^_^ I read that you should plant at least two of them so that they can cross-pollinate. I know I don’t have a garden rn but I can grow them until they’re okay to plant outdoors. then I’ll find someone with whom or some place where they’ll be happy. good plan huh? 😝

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Luna is a really good forager. My other rabbits don’t seem to seek out their favorite eats–though they’re happy to gobble them up when they find their faves, they pretty much wander around aimlessly having a bite of this and that as they go. Luna goes right to the thickest grazing patches and even knows that if she nose-boops the tomato plants enough, she can knock down some fruits.

Okay, I really really adore @camilleflyingrotten​‘s Hannistags verse? Like, I LOVE IT. So I… tried to write something for it. Very big translation thank you to @pieofthelord​ and @camilleflyingrotten​ who helped me do Hannibal’s lines on precious little context, I do apologize for that. Other people who speak French, feel free to critique the French once you see how it lines up.

Following on the heels of the last installment


The winter still hasn’t passed yet. There are mild days when I can go out, forage, stretch my legs a bit, but most days I stay curled up in my… our cave now, I guess.

I’ve let him stay with me. Not like I can make him go away, lord knows I’ve tried! He’s pretty handy to have around. At least I’m not hungry anymore. He’s always bringing me things to eat, especially now that he’s figured out I like food more than flowers. It’s sweet, the way he watches me eat with a pleased look on his face. Kinda creepy, but sweet.

And he’s good to have during the night. He must be a mountain stag, he’s got this thick coat that grows all over his body; it’s double-layered, long and bristly on the outside, soft and plush on the inside, very fit for winter. Unlike me, I have a glorified scarf, REAL useful. He puts his back to the door when we lay down for the night to protect me from the draft. I’ve tried moving around, away from him, but he always pulls me back in front of him. It’s taken some getting used to, but… at least I’m not going to freeze to death anymore.

(And his coat is very VERY plush once you get your hands in it. Sometimes I run my fingers over his chest, his fur is so deep I can’t even see my fingers through it. He’s so soft and warm and… but it’s not like I like him! He’s just… handy. Keeps me from dying. That’s all.)

During the day he goes out for long stretches most of the time. Sometimes he comes back with a huge kill, HOW he takes them down I’ll never know, but that’s probably how he got his ear ripped to shreds, taking down something bigger than he is. Or fighting with another stag. I’d hate to see the other guy if that’s the case.

But sometimes he doesn’t come back with anything at all. I don’t ask him where he goes or what he does, mostly because he wouldn’t understand me if I did. But then sometimes he just follows me around, watches me strip bark to build traps or collect grass to make twine.

“Quel travailleur appliqué,” he says, lazily watching me from the first rock to melt all the snow off it, “Est-ce que c’est comme ça que tu te débrouillais, avant que notre rencontre?”

“You know, if you don’t collect resources now, you’ll be playing catch-up all summer,” I nag, stretching for a branch I want to strip.

With a surprisingly quiet whisper for his bulk, he steps over to me and breaks off the branch with hardly a thought. I stare up at him, study his face as he patiently waits for me to take it, and look away briskly, not even saying thank you. I walk away and he follows me, always three steps behind. I’m never out of his sight when we’re together like this. I try not to enjoy it.

Somedays though it’s FAR too cold to go out. Those days are… interesting.

“Bonjour, bel éphèbe” I hear him murmuring to me as I wake up, “Je ne pense pas que tu seras capable d’aller danser dans la forêt aujourd’hui.”

“Mmmm…” I lift my head out of his arms and look over his shoulder. The cave entrance is COMPLETELY stopped up with snow, “Oh my god! We’re blocked in!” I scramble to my hooves and scratch at the ice, but it’s thick, it won’t budge.

“No no no! Don’t tell me I’m stuck in here all day with… with you!” I pull on my ears, panicking as I turn back to him.

“Attends quelques jours, ça aura vite fondu. Nous aurons juste à profiter au maximum d’être ensemble.” He speaks unhurriedly, as if he’s completely fine about being boarded up inside four walls. Maybe he is; I don’t really know anything about mountain stags other than what I know about him. I, on the other hand, can’t stand the idea.

I turn back to yell at him and for the first time I notice the puddle behind him, his damp fur, and the snow crystals still stuck to him. He bore the cold and wind all night for my sake.

I relax instantly and approach him cautiously, “Is that… are you cold?” I reach out to brush the ice from him.

He raises an eyebrow, bemused, completely mystified by my sudden caution.

Hesitantly I flick off some of the snow and ice, “Are you cold?” I repeat, then mime shivering, rubbing my own arms, “Cold.”

Recognition dawns on him and he laughs hysterically, voice bouncing off the walls of the cave.

“Je supporterai bien pire pour toi, mon doux faune.” he smiles, holding out a hand to me. I guess he’s not cold then.

I take his hand and he pulls me onto his chest and abruptly rolls me over onto the wet spot.

“EEEK!” I shriek, wriggling under him, trying to get away from the cold. He laughs uproariously again like he’s just played the biggest prank in the world. REAL original.

“It’s fucking cold! Get off me!” I shove at his shoulders, trying to push out from under him, but he pins me there, face pressed against my chest as his laughter subsides.

“Tu es tellement adorable quand tu cries” he grins at me with a knowing twinkle in his eye.

“Fuck you,” I pout. I have no idea what he said, but I know I’d take offense to it. He just smirks and continues to pull me back when I try to squirm away.

I guess we’ve found something to do then. Annoy the fuck out of each other.

Christmas for pets is so much more fun than humans exhibit A: when u buy presents for people there’s all the stress of picking the perfect thing and spending a certain amount of money so u don’t look cheap & presenting it properly & awkwardly watching them open it while continually muttering “I have the receipt…if u don’t like it…” but w/ my rats I know that I can give them a half-empty box of tissues and some banana mash and they’ll just be like “OH MAN OH MAN OH MAN THIS IS THE BEST DAY OF MY LIFE OH MAN OH MAN OH M”

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I’ve been busy! We’ve been harvesting wild blueberries and thimbleberries, and boy has this summer been perfect for them. We finished with 15 quarts of blueberries and 4 quarts of thimbleberries, and there are still thimbleberries left to be picked! It’s a good thing I cleaned out the freezer earlier this year. 

We also went to a rock and mineral show last weekend and scored some good deals. I’m in love with that chunk of purple fluorite! Geology is a pretty big deal in my neck of the woods, with the region’s history of mining, and it was really neat to see so many locally-found specimens. 

I’ve not been finding much in the way of dead stuff, but I did take a walk on the beach a couple nights ago and found a fawn carcass. It was roadkill, and had probably been dragged off the highway. It’s been so hot and dry, and the body was literally a husk of dried skin and bones. 

That’s my update! Hope y’all have been finding cool things! 

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My forest forager outfit front to back in case anyone wanted to use it! OOTD Breakdown here:

Hat: Straw Spring hat

Body: Expeditioners tabard

Pants: Expeditioners pantalettes 

Shoes: Far eastern matriarch’s boots

Arms Hard leather ringbands

Jewelry is mostly bone jewelry tbh

If you are interested in more glam #ootd posts let me know :> I love sharing my glams with peeps if they want!

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Naturally, being kuhli loaches, mine have managed to get an ich outbreak, while leaving the ember tetras unaffected. (Which does make sense, given the parasites’ home base is substrate when not spending time burrowing into scale and skin).

I haven’t had an ich outbreak (and then it was only once) in 2-3 years, so it shouldn’t have been a surprise that I found my bottle of Kordon Rid-Ich+ dried up/leaked. Aquarium salt wasn’t an option (loaches + plants + salt = NOPE ) so I made a trip into the sudden snowstorm to find an underwhelming array of ich meds at the nearest Petsmart.

I had to make do with Marineland’s Ich Remedy, which also contains malachite green, at half dose. These photos were from before treatment. Today they are on dose two, and I didn’t encounter any dead loaches while doing the second water change, but it’s very hard to count them when they are wiggling their way through plants. At any rate, the white parasite spots seem to have diminished. Some of them had no external symptoms at all. Go figure.

Today’s lesson: double check your medicine stock, prepare for the inevitable.

It was frigid and snowy up in Many this weekend. The hotel is all boarded up for the winter and the days seem a bit darker. A golden eagle was on the hunt and bears were out to forage. My favorite season in the park. A time for wildlife to emerge and for people to depart.

This fire lasted for over 4 hours and we sat and drank beer and welcomed the cold.