Last week, Clover made a quill by soaking a wild turkey feather in soapy water for fifteen minutes and then cutting the bottom part of the feather at an angle. She wanted to buy some ink at a stationary store for using with her quill, but we couldn't find any even somewhat natural ink in our town.
So, she remembered a recipe for berry ink in _Green Crafts for Children_ and we decided to give it a try since we have plenty of ripe blackberries right now (some of which are too tart for just eating).
To make your own berry ink:
* Gather one cup of berries and put them in a strainer. Use the back of a spoon (or a rock or your fingers) to smash the berries. Gather the juice in a bowl underneath your strainer.
* Add 1 tablespoon of salt to the juice for a preservative.
* Add 1 tablespoon of vinegar to help retain the color of the ink.
* Mix well & pour into a small (baby food sized) jar.
* Use your feather quill to write a story!!
Clover has been writing a story for days now. It is very sweet. The boys are interested in writing with the ink, too. They made quills from the geese feathers that we picked up at the park. I can't wait to try making the ink with poke berries when those become ripe. We always paint with them in early Fall, and they make beautiful natural paint.