Where is Dylan Ratigan from MSNBC?

REMEMBER HIM?

  images-1images-2

I was an occasional viewer and my husband was a big fan, but after he threw in the towel, anchoring his own show last June, Dylan Ratigan was nowhere to be found.  Recently, he reappeared on a hydroponic farm in southern California.  He has joined forces with a former Marine to build a hydroponic network and employ veterans.

I’m impressed!  In today’s media we have a 24 hour resource of ‘talk the talk” personalities who do nothing else.  This man left it all, and is putting his boots in the soil.  Talk alone cannot change this world.  Exchange of ideas is important, but we need leadership, those who can “walk the walk,” and Dylan Ratigan is leading by example.  More power to him!  Thanks Mr. Ratigan.

Read the article at:  Mother Nature Network

Cheap and Simple Hydroponics:

Advertisements

Celebrate World Oceans Day

June 8th is World Oceans Day, watch the video below and revel in the awesome beauty and power of our world seas.

Yet, all is not well.  It is easy to recognize environmental crises on our soil, i.e. toxic waste, harvest practices, and many others.  But the health of our oceans is not so evident, not in our face, like other issues.  Even for those of us who live on the coast, we look out upon an ocean that never seems to change.  But the changes are coming, and fast.

slide_5536_75806_sq50

Nine Problems Destroying Our Oceans (Photos)

Forest Fairy Mailbox / Woodland Gnome House

“I heard that if you build a small house, and place it near the woods, then fairies and gnomes will come to visit.  They will come at night most of the time.  They love children, and will bring you gifts, something from nature, every time they come.”

Image

I have to brag, this beautiful little wooden and copper work of art was designed by my son, Matt (blog link) and built by my husband, Greg.  As grandparents, we are committed to exposing our grandchildren to the world of nature. Their parents are doing a wonderful job of that too.  I was reading recently how peculiar it would seem to an ancient, indigenous culture that we now have to “teach” about nature.  Most of us no longer live in the heart of the natural world, but we must never lose our connection to it.

Fairy:Gnome 2      Fairy:Gnome 1

On his first visit to the gnome house, the look on our grandson’s face was incredible! He circled around it and peered in the windows.  And opened the door to find that the gnome had left him a beautiful crystal , an amethyst.  Now every time he receives a gift, an unusual stone, a shell perhaps, or a feather dropped by a bird, he wants to pick a wildflower and leave it in the box, to give back to the gnome.  So cute!

Now we await our granddaughter’s first visit.  The forest fairy is just waiting.  The fairy knows she’s coming, and there will be a gift in the mailbox, something from our beautiful, natural world!

Boston In Our Hearts

Image“It may be stroking the cat, pottering in the garden, praying, meditating, listening to music or simply gazing at the waves of an incoming sea, we do these things because we find them replenishing; just as a field benefits from lying fallow so we can benefit from periods of uninterrupted rest.  That part of ourselves which demands something more than fatuity and shallow sensationalism deserves our time and respect.”   The Spirit of Silence by John Lane

Toys NOT Made In China

It’s that time already!  Christmas is just around the corner, and I’m on my bully pulpit again about toys made in China.  There are two certainties regarding this issue:  Babies and toddlers will put all toys in their mouth, and if the toy is from China we have no knowledge about how it was manufactured.  On a recall site that I recently visited, ninety-eight percent of all recalled toys were made in China.  Check out this new app:

RECALLS.GOV mobile application  You can enter the product name in your phone and check toy recalls instantly from your home, daycare or store.

I’ve been researching this issue for a couple of years, and I understand the difficulty that retailers experience.  One told me recently that if they went to market and purchased only toys made outside China, they could not be prepared for holiday shopping.  SO SAD isn’t it, from a jobs standpoint alone.  And, with all due respect to retailers, many of them are doing their best.  It is important to keep letting them know that we have a preference for toys NOT made in China.

I’m not a purist – who can be?  If you want to purchase the latest and most popular toy, it will most certainly be from a large toy company and likely be manufactured in China.  Nevertheless, there are alternatives.  Consider your local holiday fairs and festivals, where you can purchase from local vendors.
And, options online are improving:

China Free Christmas

Toys Made in USA/Amazon.com

Kids Toys Made in USA and Europe

Happy holidays and happy shopping!  And remember, it may sound cliche, but our love and attention is the greatest gift we can give those wonderful grandchildren!

TAKE THE GRANDCHILDREN CAMPING

We have a few more weeks before school starts, a little more time to get those grandchildren outside.

My husband and I have been camping all summer, and here’s the good news.  We are out there, GRANDPARENTS!  Camping has been a passion for years, but this was the first year to see grandparents out en masse with their grandchildren.   What a wonderful sight!

Well, when I say “camping” we’re not purists anymore.  Hitting the 60’s made us consider an RV, so now we are traveling with a small RV – a camper on our pickup.

We can’t wait to take the grandchildren, who are still a little too young.  If your bones don’t want to sleep on the ground anymore, or get dressed and trek to the bathroom in the middle of the night, there are many RV rental options.  They come in all shapes and sizes, and equipped with various supplies.  Check it out!

Go RVing
El Monte RV
Camping World RV

It may be getting a little late this year, as school will start soon in many states, but think about it and see if you can’t put this on your calendar for next summer – camping with the grandchildren!  You won’t be alone.

Grandparents exposing those little ones to nature; we couldn’t leave a better legacy!

EVERYONE CAN AFFORD TO BUY ORGANIC

I’ve been buying organic produce, grass-fed beef and free range chicken for several years, and I don’t have an unlimited grocery budget.  This is how I do it.
Take a look at the items and costs below, then stay with me, and start thinking outside the box.

1/2 gallon of ice cream – $3.50
wiki.answers.com

Large bag of chips – $2.50
www.ask.com

Six pack of soda – $2.50
wiki.answers.com

Bag of oreo cookies (17 oz) – $3.95
www.chacha.com

Frozen pizza – $7.00 – $9.00
blogs.wsj.com

This is just a sampling and prices will vary where you live, but everyone is aware  that this “stuff” is VERY expensive.  We all have our cell phones with us everywhere these days, so here’s the challenge:  The next time you go grocery shopping, use the calculator on your phone.

You may be surprised when you actually discover what you can save by eliminating the items above.  Then go to the organic produce area (most supermarkets now provide some organic produce – YAY!) in your market, and see if the credits you gave yourself by eliminating junk food will pay for your organic purchases.  And, don’t forget your local farms; buy from farmer’s markets if you can find one in your area.  Go to Local Harvest, a Farmer’s Market locator.

Here is another thought:  If you eat out once in a week you have probably used up all the credits you would need  to buy organic produce and grass-fed and/or free range meat.

We are talking about lifestyle changes, and they are never easy, but these types of change not only benefit our health, but the earth as well.  And, if you are serious about eating better you can now eliminate the false concept that organic is not affordable.  I’m not suggesting that we give up everything at once, or even forever.  Start small, and eliminate a couple of things – think of it as gradually trading up to a healthier lifestyle.  And, by all means, treat yourself once in awhile.