Today's Quote


“If people let government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny.” Thomas Jefferson

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Exhaustion and Disgust....in a good way!

Hunting season in now in full force and I have two wonderful families and hunters that bring me their extras. So in the past 2 weeks we have put 3 deer in the freezer. One family brings them already gutted and having been hung in a cooler. The other just calls when he shoots one. I got one of the second the other night at 5:45. I really have no place with light to do this kind of dirty work so I moved an old table under the yard light. Hubby was at work and oldest daughter was at a friend's house. Just me, the 5 year old and a very large dead buck on the table. All my neighbor wanted for his bullet was the horns. What a wrestling match I had with that deer. It took me much longer to skin and gut than usual and I was already tired by the time I hauled the cooler into the house to further process the meat. I am so thankful for the meat though, it was all worth it. I am worn out and exhausted. We need three more to safely get us through to next year's season. Four would be better. Last year we put four in the freezer and ran out at the end of July. It was really hard not having that meat until October. Now to the disgusting part...no guts are not disgusting, they are what they are. I have decide that this is the winter that I will learn to tan hides and make buckskin. So armed with Carla Emory's instruction I set my first hide in water to sit....for days. It depends on how many days it will take for the hair on the hide to slip. It took my first hide 5 and let me tell you a hide that has been sitting in water for 5 days will make you gag! I am really not sure I am cut out for this. After a few minutes of fleshing out and de-hairing said hide that has been soaking all you can smell everywhere is rot and decay. However, I did it...I put on my big girl boots and fleshed that hide. You can brain tan the hide afterwards, but I chose to use fels naptha soap since I don't often have the brain (remember many of my deer come headless). I also am not sure if I am ready to squish brain paste between my hands just yet. The fleshing was enough gross to hold me for awhile. So the hide was thoroughly worked in a soft soap paste with fels naptha (also helped with the smell all around me and on me). Now it will soak in that paste for a couple of days. After that it will be stretched and worked and I should have buckskin. It isn't the prettiest of hides and I must say that if I am going to do this I should take more time to get a prettier shaped hide off the animal. However, it is a hide...my very first and we will see how it turns out. I should be able to make something from it. With my luck though whatever I make will probably rot. Oh well, like everything it is a learning process and who knows I might just get good at this and be able to bring in a little extra money. Always looking for ways that the farm can earn some money. Maybe I could trade them to a leather worker as long as I get a couple pairs of gloves made from them, then they can have all the hides. Well that is a long way away at this point. Hide number two is now soaking and I hope it doesn't take as long to soak. So after processing a deer and working a hide for the past two days, I am exhausted and my body is killing me. I think I will take it kind of easy today and do domestic womanly things. Blessings from the farm, Kat

1 comment:

ourlittleacres said...

Tanning hides is on my list for this year also but my husband has yet to get a deer. Praying for one soon. We also need at least 4-5 to get us through along with our livestock but we moved this summer and no longer have a multitude of neighbors bringing us their deer. The deer don't seem to be as plentiful here. Best of luck with your buckskin!