Welcome Back Enota Readers!

September 23, 2012

Our mornings here in the North Georgia Mountains are getting brisk; autumn is in the air! And since now is the season to gather around the welcoming warmth of a cozy campfire, today’s topic is about campfire safety.


Some quick guidelines

–         Always check the weather conditions. Campfires are especially bad to have when conditions are far too dry (keeping a watch out for wet weather isn’t a bad idea either!).

–         Never build a campfire on a particularly windy day. Stray sparks or embers can travel far and create serious trouble.

–         Build your fire away from anything flammable (this includes overhanging tree branches or dry grass).

–         If at all possible, build your campfire in a fire pit.

–         NEVER use gasoline to “help” your fire along.

–         When using lighting fluid, be cautious and do not pour directly onto an open flame

–         Keep the environment clean; don’t burn garbage!

–         Don’t leave your campfire unattended.

–         Keep water and/or a shovel close by to douse the fire.

–         When putting out your fire with water, stir the embers and apply more water.

–         When using dirt or sand to put out a fire, use water. Still-burning coals still retain a good portion of their heat when buried.


Firewood Safety

Believe it or not, there are guidelines for firewood! Of course, these guidelines can vary from state to state, so you might want to brush up on some of these rules before going camping. The following guidelines, however, regard Georgia and the movement of wood across county or state lines.


Firstly, don’t move firewood! At least, be cautious about transporting it. Tree-killing insects, fungi, and diseases can hide in firewood. When the infected firewood travels, it takes those problems with it and even cause infestations in other areas. Even if you can’t see anything and the firewood seems fine, there could still be microscopic spores in the wood. And, because certain forest pests can occupy specific parts of the state, even moving wood a few miles or so can impact the new environment.


So what can you do? Well, you can use local firewood to start. However, if you’ve already brought your own firewood, the safest thing to do is burn ALL of it on-site before you leave. This helps to minimize potential distribution of pests. If you’re wondering how far you can transport your firewood, the answer is easy: don’t move firewood outside of the county it originated from.

For more information on Georgia firewood guidelines, please visit http://www.gatrees.org/ForestManagement/ForestHealth.cfm.

For information about your own state, you can visit your state’s Forestry Commission website.


And now for some campfire fun! We all know the campfire s’more classic: Hershey’s chocolate and marshmallow smashed between two graham crackers. But your campfire can help with so many other treats with just a bit of dedication.


Campfire Cherry Cobbler

Empty two 21-ounce cans of cherry pie filling into the bottom of a greased Dutch oven and cover with Bisquick shortcake batter. Put the lid on and place the pot directly onto the smoldering coals of the campfire, avoiding any intense flames. Cook for about thirty minutes, rotating every few minutes.


Banana Boat

Slice an unpeeled banana lengthwise without cutting all the way through the bottom peel. Pull it open and fill with marshmallows, chocolate, butterscotch, or chocolate chips, caramel, peanut butter, etc. Press the filling into the banana flesh and wrap it tightly in foil. Cook in the coals of the campfire away from the flames for about 10 minutes.

recipes obtained from chow.com


Enota Mountain Retreat

1000 Hwy 180,  Hiawassee GA 30546

(706) 896- 9966      email: enota@enota.com

official web site:  www.enota.com


Snake Safety

September 7, 2012

Hi! Today’s topic is a safety topic. Because our mild winter here in the North Georgia Mountains has made our snakes a little more aggressive this year, we’re going to talk about how to identify those poisonous snakes you should avoid, and what to do if you are bitten.


Now, it’s always best to err on the side of caution and just leave any snake you see alone. Many snakes you find are harmless garden or water snakes. Sometimes, however, you can stumble across some venomous ones. This guide will hopefully help in steering clear of the more dangerous snakes.




Now, the snake you’ll hear the most about in the North Georgia Mountains is the Copperhead. It is also, however, one of the most mis-identified snakes. Most copperheads have a light brown or tan color overlaid by darker bands. These bands can look like hourglasses or Hershey Kisses. They will not, however, have a copper-colored head. These snakes can reach up to 2 or 3 feet in length and have rather thick bodies.

Copperheads don’t mind other snakes and often nest together. So if you see one copperhead, watch out for more nearby. Still, copperheads aren’t naturally aggressive. While they can sometimes move towards you or strike out when frightened, they more often prefer fleeing. Most people are bitten simply because people don’t see them and get too close.

If bitten, you MUST go to the nearest medical facility as soon as possible. Don’t stop to try to catch or kill the snake; even a moderate copperhead bite could cause damage sufficient to lose a limb. So if you think you’ve been bitten, seek medical attention. A doctor can then treat you accordingly, based on the symptoms you describe. Even if you aren’t bitten, don’t try to handle the snake in any way; simply call a professional to remove it. They have the proper experience and tools to safely remove the snake. If you check with your local wildlife professionals, your county may have a free snake removal. Remember: be safe!




Here in Georgia we have our fair share of rattlesnakes and you can find a particular variety here in the North Georgia Mountains: the Timber Rattlesnake. It can have several variations on the background, although the ones you’ll find in the northern part of Georgia will most likely have a gray or yellowish brown tone. It also sports black chevrons (or cross bands), and of course, it has that distinctive rattle. The average length for the Timber snake is between 3 and 4 feet.


First Aid for Snake Bites

If you are an hour or more away from the hospital, there are ways you can limit the damage from a venomous snakebite (though these methods are not completely effective, so you MUST see a medical professional for care).

Firstly, do not cut or suck the venom from the bite area. This is just dangerous for both parties. Attempting to cut the bite site could result in further damage, while sucking out the venom could cause problems for the other person involved. It is better to simply put that myth out of your mind if you ever suffer a snakebite.

Don’t apply a tourniquet or pressure bandage, or even apply ice or heat to the bite area. For obvious reasons, applying pressure or ice can restrict blood flow and will most likely cause additional damage to the surrounding tissue. So, even if swelling occurs, do not apply pressure, heat, or ice to the wound.

Do not use alcohol or hydrogen peroxide. This type of antiseptic can effect coagulation and possibly do more harm than good. On that note, do not drink any alcohol, as it can work to thin the blood.

At last, don’t try to kill or catch the snake; you lose precious time that way and waiting to seek medical attention can do permanent damage.

What you can do is move away from the snake. Call 911 or get to the ER as soon as possible. Try to limit movement from the limb (or digit) affected and remove any watches, rings, bracelets, belts, show laces, etc., as they can restrict blood flow once the body begins to swell. Also note the time and location of the bite; this will be useful later when professionals attempt to administer to you. Also, keep the bitten limb in a neutral position to the heart—in other words, don’t elevate it. At last, try to stay as calm as possible. Fatalities from snakebites are less than 1% in the U.S. Just get to a medical facility as soon as you are able to make sure you are taken care of.

Well, I hope this makes your hikes and camping trips a little easier. Just watch where you step!



Enota Mountain Retreat

1000 Hwy 180,  Hiawassee GA 30546

(706) 896- 9966      email: enota@enota.com

official web site:  www.enota.com

Greetings, Friends of Enota!

Suppose you’re in the middle of cooking a big dinner,  and, come to find out, you’re missing an ingredient or don’t have enough of an ingredient. This post is to help you find a solution other than that last-minute drive to the store… saving you time, gasoline, and frustration.

What if you’re making  buttermilk biscuits, but find that you don’t have enough buttermilk?

 1/4 cup whole milk plus 3/4 cup yogurt will make 1 cup of  “buttermilk”… you really won’t be able to tell the difference!

Or, what if you’re baking Grandma’s recipe for chocolate cake only to find that  the kitchen elves ate some of your baker’s chocolate?

3 Tablespoons cocoa plus 1 Tablespoon shortening or butter equals one square of baker’s chocolate.

What if you’re making gravy, but find the cornstarch box empty?

Use 2 teaspoons flour as a substitute for 1 teaspoon of cornstarch.

Say you’re baking a cake,  and you drop your last eggs on the floor?   Now what?

Generally in baking you can replace one egg with three Tablespoons cornstarch!

Don’t have enough flour for that baking project?

1 and 1/2 half cups ground rolled oats  will substitute perfectly for 1 cup all-purpose flour.  (Grind the oats in a coffee grinder or food processor).

Not enough lemon juice?

 For a  small amount, use 1/2 teaspoon vinegar in place of 1 teaspoon lemon juice.  Other substitutes: any citrus juice, or try orange marmalade – depending,  of course,  on the recipe.

Also, you can get more juice from a dried up lemon if you heat it for 5 minutes in boiling water before you squeeze it!

Mayonnaise ran out before the ‘tater salad was moist enough?

Substitute cottage cheese,  sour cream,  plain yogurt,  or cream cheese – or a combination of these.  (Potato salad made with cream cheese is absolutely delicious!)

Didn’t have quite enough sugar for that recipe?

Brown and white sugars can be used interchangeably.  Or, substitute 3/4 cup honey for 1 cup sugar, and reduce the other liquid in the recipe by a Tablespoon or two.

Oh, no! You’re almost ready for the big event only to realize that you forgot the whipped cream!

Beat an egg white until stiff;  add 1 mashed banana and sugar to taste, beating it all together.

Another substitute for whipped cream:  Cool 1/2 cup evaporated milk in the bowl in which you will later beat it; (cooling it in the freezer for about an hour is best… Also, cool the beaters, whether electric or hand-operated.) Whip the well-chilled evaporated milk until it is at the soft peak stage; then beat in 3 rounded Tablespoons sugar. Use immediately.

We hope you’ve learned a

new tip or two to help you in

the kitchen and prevent your

having to make yet another trip to the

grocery store!

For a delightful change of pace, reserve a vacation cabin here at Enota.  The Fall season is a wonderful time of year to visit the North Georgia Mountains.  We’d love to see you.

Enota Mountain Retreat

1000 Hwy 180,  Hiawassee GA 30546

(706) 896- 9966      email: enota@enota.com

official web site:  www.enota.com

Healing Clay – Part Three

November 8, 2011

Hello again , Enota Friends!

Today we’re going to wrap up our

series on calcium bentonite clay…

Truthfully,  there are even

more uses for healing clay

than what we’re covering in

this  three-part series;  but,

 we’re covering the majority

of them.   This stuff is really wonderful!

For Cleaning Fruits & Veggies:

Washing your produce in a solution of  “Healing Clay”  and water will remove radiation, pesticides and other toxins.

The clay has a remarkably strong negative ionic charge. When activated with water it works like a strong magnet, adsorbing and absorbing anything with a positive ionic charge (i.e., toxins, pesticides, radiation). The clay captures these substances and removes them as the clay is washed off.

How-To:  Start with liquid clay; this can either be purchased as liquid clay or you can make your own from the clay powder. Liquid clay is the clay powder mixed with water at a ration of 1 part clay to 8 parts water.

Then, in  a large non-metallic bowl, mix 1/4 cup of liquid clay with 1 quart of water. Place the fruits or vegetables in this clay water making sure they’re completely covered and let them sit for about 10 minutes. Rinse and dry them, and store them as you normally would.

For Tooth Paste:

Tooth Powder Recipe:

8 Tablespoons Dry Powder  Clay

2 Tablespoons Baking Soda 

3 teaspoons Ground Cloves

3 teaspoons Stevia

1/2 teaspoon Peppermint Essential Oil

Mix ingredients well. Put regular toothpaste on your brush, wet and shake water off. Dip in the dry powder mix and brush teeth.  Your teeth will feel amazingly clean and smooth!

Tooth Paste Recipe:

Mix 3 drops of tea tree and 6 drops of peppermint to 2 oz. of hydrated clay. Brush teeth with this mixture. Store the mixture in a jar with a lid to prevent it from drying out.

Children’s Toothpaste:

Safest Toothpaste for Babies!


4T Calcium Bentonite Clay Powder
4T Xylitol sweetener
4T purified water
4 drops peppermint extract

In a non-metal bowl, mix the powders together in a small glass bowl. Drop the peppermint extract into the water. Slowly add the water into the powders until it forms a paste.

Benefits of Bentonite and Xylitol:  Although not proven , the calcium in bentonite clay may help re-mineralize a tooth with mild decay.  Xylitol has become popular in dental preparations recently due cavity fighting properties. It’s effectiveness can be compared to that of fluoride but without the potentially harmful effects of swallowing fluoride. So,  don’t worry if your kids  swallow  the toothpaste because it tastes good; the clay is good for the digestive tract!

Clay Hair Conditioner:

 Mix together:

1 tablespoon  olive oil

1 tablespoon  almond oil

1 tablespoon  castor oil

1 tablespoon  Jojoba oil

4 tablespoons  organic cold pressed coconut oil.

Warm the oils so they’re warm, not hot.  Then,  mix in a few tablespoons of liquid clay and blend it all together into a thick paste.  Apply it evenly to the hair and scalp and leave it on for about an hour, then shampoo & rinse in the shower.   This hair conditioner is very good for thick hair and long hair;  it seems to strengthen the hair, so if you are desiring to grow your hair long, this is a good conditioner for you.

And this ends our series on

calcium bentonite clay.  We

hope this has been educational

as well as entertaining.  And we

hope you will try some of these

healthful ideas.

For a healthy vacation or weekend getaway, reserve a cabin here at Enota Mountain Retreat.  Ideally located in the Blue Ridge Mountains,  we are between  Helen  and  Blairsville  GA, and also  close to Murphy, Franklin, and Highlands,  North Carolina.  We have conference facilities, spa services, and bed & breakfast services available.  Visit us for a true retreat to the mountains.

Enota Mountain Retreat

1000 Hwy 180, Hiawassee GA 30546

(706) 896- 9966 email:


official web site: http://www.enota.com

Sustainability 102 – You!

October 20, 2011

Greetings, Enota Friends!

As promised, today we will talk about a few simple ways we can all save energy – and money!  You may have seen some of these tips before, but, hopefully some will be ideas you hadn’t thought of in relation to “going green”.

 Save energy & save money!

Well, it’s nearing the end of October, and it has turned cold up here in the North Georgia Mountains.  Last night it was in the thirties… Set your thermostat a few degrees lower in the fall and winter to save on heating  costs.

Let’s say you normally keep your thermostat at 70 degrees in the cooler months… turning it down 3 degrees will save on energy costs. Make it a habit to dress in layers. Keep warm slippers, blankets, and sweaters handy throughout your home so that you aren’t tempted to turn the thermostat up.

Furthermore, turn the thermostat down to 59 degrees while you are at work and/or during the night while you are asleep.  Turning the thermostat down 11 degrees will result in a 13% savings on gas and a 2%savings on electric. (This is based on a gas heater with an electric blower.)

“The rule of thumb is that you can save about 3% on your heating bill for every degree that you set back your thermostat” full time, says Bill Prindle, deputy director for the nonprofit American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy.

Install compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) when your older incandescent bulbs burn out.

Wash clothes in cold water whenever possible. As much as 85 percent of the energy used to machine-wash clothes goes to heating the water.

If at all feasible, use a drying rack or clothesline to save the energy otherwise used during machine drying.

These  steps can help  your finances  and the environment!

Unplug appliances when you’re not using them.

This simple step can also prevent damage to electronics if there is a power surge or electrical storm.

An option:  use a “smart” power strip that senses when appliances are off and cuts  “vampire” energy use.

And, don’t forget to turn off the lights as you leave the room.  

Save water to save money.

Take shorter showers to reduce water use. This will lower both your water and heating bills.

Install a low-flow showerhead. They are fairly inexpensive and the water and energy savings will quickly pay for your investment.

Make sure you have a faucet aerator on each faucet. These inexpensive appliances conserve heat and water, while keeping water pressure high.

If you have outdoor landscaping, plant drought-tolerant native plants in your garden.  Find out which occur naturally in your area. Outdoor watering – unless it is for food – can be very costly to your budget and the environment.

Skip the bottled water.

Use a water filter to purify tap water instead of buying bottled water. Not only is bottled water expensive, but it generates large amounts of container waste.

Bring a reusable water bottle, preferably glass aluminum rather than plastic, with you when traveling or at work.

These are just a few of the energy-saving tips we have discovered… Next time we’ll talk about a few more…

Enota Mountain Retreat

1000 Hwy 180,  Hiawassee GA 30546

(706) 896- 9966      email: enota@enota.com

official web site:  www.enota.com

Portable Chicken Coops

May 27, 2011

Greetings, Enota friends!

Today we will discuss an interesting way that you can have a few chickens in a small movable coop,  easily managed on a small bit of land – even in the city or suburbs!  Of course, here at Enota we have large permanent chicken coops – and lots of chickens – but for the average person just wanting a few lovely organic eggs for themselves,  this might just be the way to do it!

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Movable Chicken Coops

Movable chicken coops are a great option for people who want to build a backyard chicken coop. They work well because you can relocate the coop to a new at will,providing your chickens with fresh grass to eat. Movable chicken coops are much more versatile than most standard coops. Keep reading to see why….

Portable Chicken Coops vs. Standard Chicken Coops

Standard chicken coops can be wonderful…. if you have plenty of space for one, that is! Not only do they require more space, but a lot of things factor into the location of the coop. It needs to get plenty of sunshine, but also stay cool enough during the summer. Plus most standard coops require more maintenance and need to be cleaned much more frequently.

On the other hand, movable chicken coops,  are very low maintenance. They can be moved to a new location at any time and are much more forgiving than standard coops are.

They also have the added benefit of providing your chickens with a fresh supply of grass when they need it. This prevents the chickens from eating too much in one spot and running out of food. Plus the chicken manure left behind will fertilize your yard, making clean up a breeze!

Portable chicken coops may be the

right choice for you if:

You don’t plan on owning more than about 6 chickens at a time.

You want a low maintenance coop that doesn’t require much clean up.

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You want to have the option of relocating the chickens to another area if desired

You want to supplement some of the cost of chicken feed and stretch your dollars further by allowing the chickens to eat fresh grass.

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So what do you think about movable chicken

coops after reading this far? Does it sound like

an option that you’re interested in?  Throughout

this post are ideas for constructing your own

portable coop…

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A chicken ark is basically a coop and grazing pen in one movable package. It generally has sleeping quarters above and a fenced pen below. A gangplank connects the two parts and can be raised at night to keep the birds in and predators out.

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Handles on each end allow two people to easily move the ark around the yard, giving the chickens fresh grass every few days. It also can be placed directly over open garden beds in the fall to let the birds fertilize, cultivate, and eat bugs.

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Other portable chicken coops/arks have various types of wheels or a combination of wheels and carrying poles.  Some can be moved by one person, but most require two people to move them.

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The bigger the wheels,  the easier it will be to

move your portable coop…

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As you can see from the various photos included in this post,  a portable chicken coop can be made from various materials.    Many folks have made them from scraps,  recycled materials,  and yard sale finds.  Part of the charm of portable chicken coops  is their uniqueness.  But, if you are “not-so-handy”, there are websites on the net that will instruct you on how to buy materials for and build a portable chicken coop.  Give it a try!

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And, for a hands-on experience with organic farming,  visit us here at Enota Mountain Retreat.   Come see  and interact with the chickens,  turkeys,  horses, goats,  ducks,  rabbits,  peacocks,  and more…  Book your reservation now for a cabin or campsite at Enota and enjoy the beautiful North Georgia Mountains.

Enota Mountain Retreat

1000 Hwy 180, Hiawassee, GA 30546

(706) 896-9966

email: enota@enota.com

official website: www.enota.com

Greetings, Friends of Enota!

Today we will talk about last-minute plans for the upcoming Memorial Day weekend.  There’s still time to plan a GREAT time!

         When is Memorial Day?

In the United States Memorial Day is always observed on the last Monday on May.  This year, Memorial Day will be May 30th.

Memorial Day also is the unofficial start of the summer travel season.  It is often the first day for public swimming pols to open, etc.,  with Labor Day being the  unofficial end of that same season.

While the holiday honors members of the military who died in service to their country,  it has also become a time for family gatherings,  with an emphasis on outdoor activities – cookouts, camping,  hiking,  swimming.

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What About Traveling this

Memorial Day Weekend?

Per an Associated Press article on the AAA website, the following article was posted about Americans travelling this year on Memorial Day:

DENVER (AP) — More Americans are ready to travel for Memorial Day but high gas prices and airfares will force them to cut back on activities like dining and gambling.

That’s the forecast from AAA. The auto club predicts that nearly 35 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more over the long holiday weekend.

That’s slightly more people than a year ago but less than the 35.3 million who traveled over Memorial Day in 2007 before the recession.

The auto club says 30.9 million people will travel by car and nearly 3 million by air.

Memorial Day Weekend at Enota!

A visit to Enota for Memorial Day weekend would be a pleasure as well as a relatively inexpensive family treat.  Enota is a two hour drive  north from Atlanta,   or south from Ashville, North Carolina.  Enota Mountain Retreat is a nature preserve in the North Georgia Mountains – located between Hiawassee,  Blairsville,  and Helen  Georgia.  Enota has cabins, campgrounds, a conference lodge with dining facility,  and an all-inclusive Retreat Center.  Enota also has organic gardens and farm animals.

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Enota offers a retreat and conference center for individuals,  couples,  families,  and groups up to 200 people.

Enota offers Wi-Fi internet access.

Cabins – 1 to 4-bedroom rustic cabins with fully equipped kitchens,  linens and towels,  grills,  and decks…  all surrounded by mountains,  streams,  and waterfalls.

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Enota is pet friendly!  Wouldn’t it be NICE to not have to leave “Fido” in “doggy jail” during your vacation?

RV sites : Top-rated premium full hook-up sites on the stream… level pad,  shaded with large wooden deck,   picnic table,  grill,  and fire pit.   Big Rigs welcome.   30 and 50 amp available.

Enota also offers streamside tent and pop-up camper sites.

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Group and extended-stay specials.

Catch-and-keep trout fishing.

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Organic gardens and farm animals.  In addition to our own Memorial Day weekend activities,   Enota is located in the center of many entertaining places to go and things to see.

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Book your reservation now for  a really nice escape to the mountains…

Enota Mountain Retreat

1000 Hwy

180,Hiawassee,GA 30546

(706) 896-9966

email: enota@enota.com

official website:www.enota.com

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