Through the wonderful organization "WWOOF-USA" I was able to make contact with several qualified candidates for filling our long-term volunteer posts for the 2013 season. Matt & Melanie (& their fur-baby, "Bean") gave us their hearts & souls & TONS of energy from the first part of May allllll the way through October!! They were present from the beginning, schlepping our green babies from town out to their new homes in the hoophouses & garden beds, right up till the harvesting was done & all the beds were prepped for the dormancy of winter. Way to follow through, "kids"!! I learned much from them during their stay, & they were kind enough to make the list below before they headed back to the big city. They earned my respect & love & great admiration, & I believe the reverse is also true. In writing her review of her interactions & experience with us at Mystic Mountain, Melanie used words like "Organic", "Gorgeous", "Breathtaking", and "Life Altering!" Take a gander at the list Mel prepared before they left us in the fall, noting all the things they learned wile living & working at our off-grid, sustainable homestead!
WHAT WE LEARNED AT MYSTIC MOUNTAIN
When boating, assume buoys MAY have line attached! (Which could wrap around your prop & kill your engine.)
Do NOT plant seeds till soil is warm enough.
Slugs don’t like purple!
Pay close attention to forecasts, & DOUBLE secure skiffs, check lines frequently for fraying/chafing.
How to tie a bowline & a clove hitch.
How to crochet a blanket
How to put in irrigation
How to use the natural resources around you to improve plant beds
Pay attention to humidity levels in the greenhouses.
How to build whatever it is you need with what is on hand. (McGyver skills)
How to bust your ass & keep on truckin’ when things must get done!
How to watch& maintain a waterline & hydro system
How to properly & naturally raise chickens
Successive planting is essential
Eat whatever is edible, don’t waste!
How to build, maintain & balance a compost pile
How to properly & safely use power tools!
How to stock, save, & can food for the winter
Making Bread, Jellies/Jams, Kelp Pickles
How to chop wood
How to banya
How to drive a boat
General boating etiquette: throwing lines out/in, buoys, staying perpendicular to the waves, pushing off, running lines, etc.
Diatomaceous earth is organic & wonderful!
Apple cider vinegar & oil & water spray is great for fungi & disease prevention.
How to make compost tea & bonemeal/fishmeal soup to feed the plants
How to execute an "Anchor Drill"
How to step up to the plate &do what needs to be done! (even if you’re not in the mood!)
Proper kitchen etiquette! A little clean as you go, or BIG job later.
Gardening is a full time job!! Patience & self-discipline are everything.
The weather does not wait for you; if you don’t like it wait 5 minutes! Layering is key to comfort!
Clean meat & a peaceful death is OK! (Mel was a vegan for 8 years before visiting us. She tried many seafood & venison dishes while here!)
Look to the future & think of all possible outcomes before committing to one way of doing something! Foresight!
How to care for an off-grid sewage system!
Alaska recipe “KEEPERS!”
How to bait a hook, bleed a fish & filet a fish!
Take a gander at Mel's review for our WWOOF profile! These two worked their fannies off, earned my respect & extreme gratitude, & proved themselves WORTHY of being called "Honorary Alaskans!" We consider them to be some of our dearest friends to this day & we hope they might return to become permanent residents at Mystic Mountain Eco-Village some day in the not-too-distant future. Hugs, guys! “Mystic Mountain Farms will change your life forever. Get your tushies up here and come live in a world of: Kodiak Bears, Whales, Sea Otters, Land Otters, Bald Eagles, Silver fox, red fox, black-tailed deer, Puffins, Sea Lions, Harbor Seals, Wild plant identification/uses, hunting for and nourishing yourself from the natural life around you (meat and non-meat eaters), alternative energies, gardening, hunting, workshops on sustainable/healthy eating...making your own medicine from the plants around you...herb uses...soap making...quilt making, plus fun on a wilderness fitness course and nap time in Hammock World of the forest. This life couldn't get any more spectacular. My boyfriend, my dog, and I spent 6 LIFE-ALTERING months on this breath-taking homestead. Located on the beautiful Emerald Isle of Alaska, Mystic Mountain Farms is decorated with: a powerful creek running through the middle of the property, which powers the hydro system...which powers EVERYTHING on the property; 3,000 sq feet of gorgeous organic vegetable and flower gardens; two extremely healthy compost piles; your front yard is ocean front (actually Bay front but sure feels like ocean) with rocky beaches thriving with life; whales, eagles, puffins, seagulls, sea otter, dear, bear, sea lions, harbor seals and more, become the 'norm' of your everyday life. Ginger and Stan are two extremely wonderful, vibrant, and highly skilled individuals that can teach you ALL you want to know about off-grid living in Alaska. I honestly can't even properly convey to you how mind-blowing our experience was. If you are considering volunteering at Mystic Mountain Farms, I highly recommend going. But, I do not recommend going if you're looking for free living and a cool place to travel to. If your living at MMF you are promising to be a steward of the amazing land upon which this property is located. The lifestyle this couple lives is the real deal. You truly are living off of the land. It's amazing, and totally worth it, as long as your looking to educate yourself in organic farming and sustainable practices. Feel free to contact me for any further details!”