Friday, May 17, 2013

Peduncles, Brumes, Journey of the Universe, and Chardin

I wouldn’t know the words peduncle or brume if I weren’t married to a teacher/poet. Teaching and poetry are my husband’s (JS) vocations. He is a seeker and an information sharer, and he has imparted many of his discoveries to me on our journey together through life. As a result of JS’s meandrous approach to acquiring knowledge, through his vast and various interests, he became aware of the American Teilhard Association. The ATA is dedicated to the future of Earth and to the communities that inhabit her, and is named after PierreTeilhard de Chardin. You can find out more about the ATA here. The annual meeting for the ATA was held in New York City last weekend, so we decided to go, since we’re in the vicinity. We took the PATH to Manhattan, rode the subway up to Union Theological Seminary, where we ate lunch and then attended a lecture given by Mary Evelyn Tucker. ME Tucker co-authored a book with Brian Swimme entitled Journey of the Universe. The lecture related how the writings of Chardin inspired Journey of the Universe, which outlines our roles and responsibilities as humans toward the earth, and toward our fellow creatures, as life unfolds. The lecture was interesting, and we learned other things as well.

ME Tucker also co-directs the Yale Forum on Religion and Ecology, found here.

JS sat next to a lady named Terry, a retired NYC teacher, who told us about a wonderful book store on Crosby Street off Houston. The Housing Works book store boasts 30,000 volumes, all donated. We made our way over to the store, only to be told they were closing early to host a wedding! It looked wonderful inside, so we will be going back. They have a web site, which you can access here. Terry also told us about:

Madison Square Park around 26th off Broadway

All places we intend to visit.

As we got to the top of the stairs after getting off the subway, I heard someone crying. I looked down, and there was a navy blue button, obviously having been stepped upon myriad times. I picked up the button, put it in my pocket, and cleaned it up when we got home only to discover the words “BURBERRY” across the top and bottom. The button is now resting peacefully with its step buttons in my button box.

After we took the PATH back to Jersey City, on the way back to the car we saw a peregrine falcon swoop down to grab a pigeon….WOW!!!

In The Mystery of Edwin Drood I discovered a new word I was able to gift to JS for a change. The word is bumptiousness….isn’t that just one of the most fun words you’ve ever heard?!!!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Dandelion Tea

Don't poison your them!!!! They're so good for you! Not only are they some of the first little sunshiny faces to pop out of the earth after winter, the consumption of the fresh greens or dried greens and roots steeped into a tea are fantastic support for your liver function.

There is nothing like a handful of dandelions from little hands attached to little bodies that have been wandering through the grass looking for those treasured blossoms, to be picked and brought to an appreciative recipient. And who hasn't made a wish on a headful of dandelion seeds, then blown them to the wind to be carried to the ears of the listening universe? Why do we need dandelion free lawns? Who told us dandelions are something we should kill? Why do we listen to that lie? The dandelion free lawns I see, or lawns free of weeds in general, are empty of people as well. It's good for us to remember Earth is full of gifts, and if we accept them, we're healthier, happier, and wiser.

To learn more about dandelions and what you can do with them, click here. ROAR!!!!


Thursday, May 9, 2013

Vinegar Tonic

I came across an amazing web site and found a recipe for vinegar tonic. The recipe for the tonic includes herbs that assist in ten major healing processes (said processes are detailed very nicely in an eleven page pdf from link below). There are also other recipes and there is a lot of great information about exercise, body balancing, and healing. You will see a diverse compendium of related topics at this site by clicking here.

About a month and a half ago I made vinegar tonic, and I have been consuming it twice a day for about a month now (it takes two weeks to steep). The tonic has helped a sinus problem I've had for about a year, and I believe it is assisting in the weight loss I'm experiencing. I say assisted, because I am participating in other healthy activities as well, like walking and eating healthy meals/snacks. The vinegar tonic is not quite as hard to take as regular cider vinegar, but it still throws a pretty hefty punch! It can also be consumed by adding it to a glass of water if you're not inclined toward the quick, throw back, get it over with approach : )

The actual making of the vinegar tonic is also healing. Peeling, cutting, chopping, and combining the herbs/roots is a meditative endeavor, and the smell of the concoction as it's steeping in the vinegar for two weeks is very much like fresh refrigerator pickles.

Many thanks to Robin Grant for sharing this wonderful information on her web site, indicative of a truly generous, caring person.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Son at Play, Sun at Play

Son at Play

Here are a couple of photos of what JD does in his spare time, or he did when he had more time, he is currently getting ready to graduate from college, and in doing so, will attend field camp for six weeks, in some mountain and desert areas, as his final course of work. We are very proud of all our kids, they are each very innovative, creative, intelligent, wonderful people to be around. I won't say JD is our baby, because he's not a baby anymore, but he is our youngest, and as he gets ready to venture further out, the reality that we're sending our third really great person out in to the world is sinking in.

 This knife was fashioned by JD from a railroad spike using home made forge made by, you guessed it....JD!
I HATE stink bugs, something I'm working on, as I know it's irrational, I know they can't REALLY fly in to my ear, I know they won't REALLY put their mouth on me, still....
JD made this handy dandy stink bug vacuum, with a trigger to press that causes the bug to be sucked up into a little container (on top), that has a screw top lid that allows the bug to be humanely captured and let go. Notice the very long wand, which makes it convenient to get the bugs at long range!

 Some mapping tools JD made to take to field camp

Sun at Play

The sun has such fun. How do I know? Just view the evidence for yourself : )

Friday, May 3, 2013

Opas Soap

I first read about Opas Soap here. I ordered the Bossa Nova shampoo and conditioner, and I really like the scent as well as the way it makes my hair and scalp feel. Opas also included a couple of soap samples in the package and it smells heavenly. You can order their products here, and I think they are well worth the extra effort to acquire them, but be prepared to pay shipping. I live on the opposite coast of where Opas is located in California, so I paid shipping that would buy another bottle of shampoo. I don't have a ton of hair, so it will last me a while, which is how I justified that spend!!! I will definitely be purchasing other items from them, as their products rate well on the Skin Deep Cosmetics Database. If you'd like to take a peek at that as well, the link is here.

I have become enlightened about skin care products and what they contain that is beneficial and what they contain that is harmful, from T and C, my two very smart and lovely daughters. I appreciate being able to pass along what I've learned from them to edify anyone in my circle of acquaintances who may not already be aware of healthier options to mainstream cleansing/moisturizing/beauty products.

Wish I could post the scent of these Opas Soaps!! I almost wrote Opas Sopas, but that could work too!