Jul 01 2013

Reading Comments and posts around the BlogHer-o-sphere, it occurs to me an essential piece of information is missing.

The most important thing to have with you at BlogHer ’13 is a battery pack case for your Smartphone.

Here’s why. Every BlogHer ’12 attendee I saw was Smartphoning their heart out. They were checking schedules on the BlogHer ’12 app. They were bringing up entry passes to show door monitors at sessions. They were looking for restaurants while Instagram-ming selfies and groupies. They were Tweeting,”Hi” to BlogHers in attendance they might never see, while making lunch, dinner and party plans with those they would.

But, it all came to a screeching halt when they ran out of Smartphone power, when each Smartphone became a little dead rectangle of frustration. And, what’s worse? Each user suffered the agony of watching the battery bar recede, knowing nothing was to be done about it.

What’s the biggie? Why not just plug it in? Sure! Just go over to a wall plug and power up. Of course, it will take three hours to recharge and you’ve run out before lunchtime. And oh! By the way, there aren’t any wall outlets free, except up in your room. And, your room takes a half hour to get to, counting the wait for the elevators and Sherpa Guides. So, basically you are “out of luck” and Smartphone-less. So out of luck in fact, the Charlie Brown music plays as you shuffle your feet along feeling stupid, hoping nobody notices. But I will. And, I will make fun of you.

So, don’t feel stupid. Feel smart, SunbonnetSmart.

Let me share where I get my phone accessories on the Internet along with the inexpensive, but great, battery case model I purchased for my iPhone 4 from eBay seller, “epowerdictionary.” This is the same case I purchased last year and the one I have is still going strong. BUT! Being a nut about losing phone power during BlogHer ’13, I decided to buy a new one and pass the one I’ve been using to family members. Yes! It’s THAT important. I need all systems operable. Nothing but the best for BlogHer ’13….and me.

Now, epowerdictionary has other phone case models as well, so under the epowerdictionary name, click on “See Other Items” to see if what you need is there. Or, write them at the link here.

iPhone Cropped

“Ultra Slim” Battery case for iPhone 4/4s sold by eBay’s epowerdictionary
$12.95 Free Shipping – Click on image to enlarge

And, let me share what else I bought from “epowerdictionary:” this neaty-cool cable that allows three electronics to be charged at once:

Cables Cropped

3 in 1 USB Data and Charging Cable sold by eBay’s epowerdictionary
$5.95 Free Shipping – Click on image to enlarge

Now, you have to be a member of eBay to do all of this. EBay works just fine for me as I’ve bought and sold since 1999. If you have reservations about eBay….well, I don’t know how to advise you. But, epowerdictionary has 100% Feedback, responds almost immediately to e-mails and assures me they have stock to handle BlogHer purchases. I say, “Give them a try!”

At any rate, don’t go go to BlogHer ’13 without some sort of auxiliary power for your electronics, especially your Smartphone.


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Mar 01 2013

It was a BIG problem. My SunbonnetSmart.com web site, that is. In 2010, to achieve my signature colors and designs, Word Press did not have the latitude to give me what I wanted. So, I jumped out into the deep end of the heavy programming pool. I hired a web designer who used Cold Fusion, an older, but more flexible, programming language.

Fast forward to BlogHer ’12 in New York City. While attending tech classes, I learned I needed to update and switch over to the now capable Word Press with all of its bells and whistles. So simple! Until I started trying to find a programmer who could translate Cold Fusion into Word Press. Asking the question of everyone I met, the answer was *cricket* *cricket,* so no Word Press for me.

With Texas size problems, head to Texas for answers.

I started searching on the Internet when I got home and finally realized what I should have known all along. When you have a problem as big as the State of Texas, go to Texas to find the answer. And how could I say, “No,” to a state whose State Flower is the BlueBonnet? That’s where I found CyberCoder, otherwise known as David Cooley, who hangs his hat at www.cybercoded.net. David’s an Internet folk hero, in fact, here’s an old poem and wanted poster I found:

They Call Him CyberCoder

Down in Texas where the tumbleweeds blow,
There’s a man with a plan, he’s in the know.
Loves computers! David Cooley by name,
Known everywhere for his fine Word Press game.
They call him CyberCoder.

Past fields of BlueBonnets, by the Rio Grande,
His six gun’s a mouse, the web is his brand.
Wrasslin’ pixels, herding HTML,
His keyboard’s on fire, he’s got stories to tell.
He’s known as CyberCoder.

So, as the sun sets, each night in the west,
Need help with your site? Then, do what is best.
Ride with the Cooley Gang at CyberRanch.
Lasso a web plan, you’ll soon do a dance,
Working with CyberCoder.

 You’ll love working with David. He’s very patient with questions and perseveres until he translates your dream into a cyberspace domain. He’s made a few YouTube videos and so, you can get a feel for working with him by watching below:

Don’t you feel calm listening to CyberCoder explain Gmail Filters?

I think that David should make more YouTube videos and have Word Press classes. I know I would sign up. If you agree, let’s show him who’s boss! Tweet David at @cybercoder to show him you’re interested. I say let’s gang up on him.

Here’s David singing, “Up in the Country” with Withrow Cooley.

Don’t despair if you have hairy web problems making you wish you’d never bought a computer. Write CyberCoder. Discuss your concerns for help and resolution. After working with CyberCoder since last August, I can highly recommend him.

He’s the reason SunbonnetSmart.com is on Word Press with all the buttons to send my posts far and wide. Thank you, David Cooley!


NaBloPoMo March 2013

March 2013
Join SunbonnetSmart.com
for a post every day
here and/or on BlogHer.com

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Nov 30 2012

“Create Blog Post” Haunted

Twas the last night of NaBloPoMo and all on the screen,
Fingers were typing. New copy was seen.
Been a long month, intellect daunted.
Every day, every hour, “Create Blog Post” haunted.

Day after day and night after night,
Thinking of topics, of Comments and slights.
Don’t push too far. No vinegar. Use honey!
If content is good, we could maybe make money.

Chewing on pencils, then biting nails,
Writing and writing, some epic fails.
Don’t want to miss a November day,
‘Want to stay in the game. ‘Stay in the play.

Hours click by in terror, the sand slowly falls.
Darkness consumes the workroom and halls.
The date will switch over, midnight is coming.
With morning, who will be in the running?

Finally it’s done. I click on “Submit.”
My brain is exhausted. I can no more sit.
I linger, savoring, the moment just spent.
Give Comments on BlogHer, making a dent.

I spring to my bed. E-blanket on two.
Snuggling in covers, sleep long overdue.
Tonight is the night, I’ll never be sad.
I get it. It’s mine! The NaBloPoMo Badge!

I get it. It’s MINE!

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May 12 2012

Zoe Artemis was of Greek heritage. She had family still in Greece.

When I last spoke with her, she was excited, to the point of being effervescent, about her tours to Greece. She took groups over in the summer, introducing them to places and people that only someone with connections would have.

She had the most compelling web site on her travels and tours. The photos were nothing short of “yummy.” One look and I was ready to get a passport and meet her over there.

Although, I couldn’t go in the years after I spoke with her, I always, in the back of my mind, intended to go at a future time. Someday, somehow….

And so, you’ll remember, when I was gathering my resources for my BlogHer dancing posts, I decided that introducing BlogHers to Zoe would be a perfect tie in to advertise her trips and show BlogHers a new vista.

Zoe in Greece by the water.

But, getting in touch with Zoe again was not meant to be. Zoe died of pancreatic cancer last July, in 2011. I did not know until I went to access her web site and saw saw that it was now a site of Remembrance. As I adapted my shock of Zoe being gone, I decided to reach out to one of the Commenter who had written in her Memories of Zoe Guest Book.

There was an entry by Julie Maloney, “Zoe contacted me this year to work with her in leading a writer’s retreat on the magical island of ALONNISOS in GREECE. We spoke countless times over the phone and this is the way we bonded. When she told me she was ill and would not be able to travel to Greece, I was deeply saddened and I knew I had to meet her in person.

I traveled to Astoria to greet someone whose body was failing but whose spirit was beyond description. Her love for life was apparent. We spoke about the upcoming retreat and I promised to see her as soon as I returned. I visited her 2 days after I landed. Once again, we embraced with such warmth, I knew she owned a piece of my heart. When I left, I said, “You gave me a great gift.”

I am grateful to this amazing woman for showing me the “light” of Alonnisos – for inviting me into her “vision” of how it could be if writers came together on this island. I look forward to honoring her legacy. Zoe, I love you.” –Julie Maloney, Director of WOMEN READING ALOUD

The small island of Alonnisos is a gem of untouched beauty.

Julie Maloney is a bundle of talent. After a career in dance, she is now a writer, author and Director of Women Reading Aloud, or WRA, a writer’s cooperative in New Jersey. Julie is currently arranging the tours to Alonnisos that Zoe inspired.

“WRA is an organization dedicated to the power of the writer’s voice. WRA believes in providing space for artistic growth. Founded in New Jersey in 2003, it offers writing workshops modeled after the Amherst Writers and Artists Method, the Author Series and Work-in-Progress Series, Writing and Yoga Program, conferences and retreats where women writers can explore their “authentic” voices. Founded on the 3-in-1 principle, WOMEN READING ALOUD focuses on the equal value of the writer, the reader, and the listener. All genres are welcome. WRA encourages writers to cherish their own voices, as well as the voices of others, as they travel the writer’s journey.”

From the Women Reading Aloud web site:  “Julie Maloney, Director of WRA, will return to the island of Alonnisos to lead a ten day writing retreat. Open to women writers of all levels, writing in all genres, this retreat offers a perfect balance of community and solitude. Stay in the family owned NINNA PENSION, just up the hill from the port. (Visit: www.ninna.gr.) Enjoy the friendly service of Ninna and her family, as well as the hospitality of Edem, the multi-tiered taverna down the road where we will write each morning by the sea, surrounded by the island’s flora. Limited to 12 writers

When I contacted Julie Maloney a few weeks ago, this year’s Writer’s Retreat to Greece was filled. I just heard from Julie, there is now an opening, if anyone is interested, click here. The tour is limited to twelve participants.

Tomorrow: Meet Julie Maloney

To visit with Women Reading Aloud, click here.

To explore Zoe’s Facebook page, click here.


NaBloPoMo May 2012

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Apr 19 2012

What fun to have BlogHer specials!

Isabel Anders’ “The Wisdom of Little Women,” as introduced on BlogHer, is now for sale at SunbonnetSmart.com.

At $2.00 off the published price with no charge for shipping and handling!

But wait! There’s more!

Zazzle is offering mugs with Isabel’s books on them at $5.00 off each mug all day today! Offer good through midnight tonight, Pacific Time, Friday, April 19, 2012.

A lovely little book of timeless sentiments and profound
musings, all discussed within the walls of the March
family home, Orchard House, in Concord, Massachusetts.


“The Wisdom of Little Women”
compiled by Isabel Anders


To purchase, click here.

4 1/2″ x 5 1/2″

$4.99 includes S&H

If you love Isabel Anders’ poignant BlogHer posts on feminine wisdom like I do, you will be swept off your feet with this sweet little book, “The Wisdom of Little Women.” Isabel has a way with words, to be sure, but a way with thoughts, even more. She knows how to selectively squeeze the best out of any publication she reads, and she has read a wealth of them. She collects quotes rather than baubles, preferring an intellectual array of riches to carry her through any life situation. What’s better? She freely shares her gems with us, categorized for handy reference and referral.

Isabel at a “Becoming Flame” book signing in Tennessee.

Isabel “nearly always” wanted to be a writer. Over the years she has produced or contributed to inspirational books on a variety of subjects, including Soul Moments, Simple Blessings for Sacred Moments, and The Faces of Friendship. She also co-narrated the devotional/music CDs, Soul Openings and Soul Openings 2, and authored the illustrated 2008 calendar, Seasons for the Soul. The blogs she is posting for each month on BlogHer http://www.blogher.com/april-15 are versions of the calendar’s essays.

Madeleine L’Engle, Newbery Award-winning author (for A Wrinkle in Time), contributed an Introduction to Isabel’s first book, Awaiting the Child: An Advent Journal. Isabel authored 40-Day Journey with Madeleine L’Engle in 2009.

Having worked in book publishing and educational publishing, Isabel now works out of her home in middle Tennessee, as Managing Editor of Synthesis Publications (resources for preaching and worship based on the Revised Common Lectionary).

Her newest book, Spinning Straw, Weaving Gold: A Tapestry of Mother-Daughter Wisdom, will be released in June. It is a sequel to her 2010 book Becoming Flame: Uncommon Mother-Daughter Wisdom. http://www.blogher.com/becoming-flame

In 2011 Isabel collected quotes and wrote Blessings and Prayers for Married Couples: A Faith Full Love.

She and her husband Bill, who is retired, live on the Domain of the University of the South and worship with the Sisters at St. Mary’s Convent, as part of a varied congregation supporting the work of ministry and outreach to families in need.

Bill renovated their historic home that began as a two-room cabin built in 1896, and to which they added a wing and now call Everafter Cottage.


You heard it here, first!

Isabel is just beginning new research for an e-book:
Louisa May Alcott: God, Family, Work


To purchase, click the book.

“The Wisdom of Little Women” 11oz Mug,  click here.

To send a Zazzle Gift Certificate, click here.

$5 Off T-Shirts, Mugs, & Hats
Limited Time! Enter code:
at checkout in the “Zazzle Coupons/Gift Certificates” box $5 of the t-shirt, mug and/or hat net sale price will be deducted when one or more qualifying t-shirt, mug and/or hat items are purchased. The net sale price is the price of the product (excluding shipping and taxes). The coupon code NATIONAL5DAY must be entered during checkout to receive the offer. Offer does not apply to screen printed apparel. Offer is valid through April 19, 2012 at 11:59 PM PT. This offer does not apply to past purchases and may not be combined with any other Zazzle promotional or volume discount offers. If a volume discount applies to your order, you will receive either the discount set forth in this offer or the standard volume discount, whichever is greater. Offer valid on Zazzle.com only.

NaBloPoMo April 2012

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Apr 06 2012

Owning a business is like being the conductor of an orchestra.

The instruments can be tuned, the notes learned and the music played, all by the individual members, but to have the vision of oversight, to understand the whole piece and how the various parts are to be played together takes a leader with vision, foresight and timing.

Yes, timing. Knowing what to do when. When to push ahead. When to fall back. When to pursue opportunity and when to shut the door in its face. Timing and risk management are the two essential talents of a great conductor and good business person.

The movie Little Women was recast and released in 1994.

Sometimes one little click on a computer can lead to a whole new life. For instance, in November 2011, I was working on the back end of SunbonnetSmart.com, putting in the sales area to sell my e-products when I noticed a comment on one of my posts.

Cat Morrow, who has a wonderful organic food and natural lifestyle website left a comment about my Your Family Cow source of raw milk post. And Cat was connected to something called BlogHer. One click of the mouse, looking at Cat’s web site, then looking at BlogHer, changed my life forever.

Cat Morrow of NeoHomesteading:
her comment changed my life!

I read BlogHer and I read BlogHer, article after article, post after post and Chatter after Comment. I decided that BlogHer was the most amazing marketing tool I had ever seen, on the Internet or off. And that weekend in November, I made a big decision. I decided to orchestrate my business differently than I had planned. Being the owner of my business web site blog and entrepreneurial, I decided to conduct my symphony in a different way. I changed the score, the instruments and the musicians to put my energies in a different direction.

“It takes people a long time to learn the
difference between talent and genius,

especially ambitious young men and women.

Amy was learning this distinction through
much tribulation, for, mistaking enthusiasm
for inspiration,
she attempted every branch
of art with youthful audacity.”

The Wisdom of Little Women, p 24

I had lots going for me in that I was ambitious, but not a young woman. I knew well the difference between talent and genius. I also knew not to mistake enthusiasm for inspiration, that marketing products and ideas are two different things. And I recognized without a shadow of a doubt, with over thirty years of business experience behind me, that hooking my SunbonnetSmart cart up to BlogHer was a wise thing to do. And so, I put all of my energy into doing what I like to do best: nurturing women, networking and writing. I was like Little Women’s Jo March in that:

“…when the writing fit came on, she gave
 herself up to it with entire abandon, and
led a blissful life, unconscious of want,
care or bad weather, while she sat safe
and happy in an imaginary world…”

The Wisdom of Little Women, p 24

I have been very happy in my BlogHer world, insulated by positive women leaving beautifully soulful Comments. But now, duty calls. I must now get back to my business and work to make a living in this recession-based whatever it is we are living in. Like Jo, I must work “by the magic of a pen” to turn comforts for us all. What I am saying is that I have the business experience and I see so much talent on BlogHer, I feel called to help those who are looking for a market and don’t know how to get out there.

What got me thinking about all of this is, remember that back end of my web site that I was working on last November, well it’s still there, just waiting until I get back to it. So, we have a sales interface all set up, waiting to go. A couple of weeks ago, when Isabel Anders was mentioning she wanted to expand awareness of her The Wisdom of Little Women book, I told her that we could sell it on my web site in a turn key fashion, put it up and see what happens.

The Wisdom of Little Women is a popular
item at the Orchard House Museum Gift Shop.

Now, having read The Wisdom of Little Women, I see all of us, those of us on BlogHer, as Little Women. We are all working hard to keep the home fires burning while the world is pictured as being in turmoil. In an instant it hit me that we can work together, like the March family did, to weather our storms.

Throughout this thinking process of the last couple of weeks, culminating with actually meeting the three BlogHers, Chelsey, Sabrina and Carol, in New York City, I have decided I would like to publish e-books and I’m throwing my sunbonnet into the ring. Why not turn my web site into an outlet for anyone on BlogHer that is interested in getting their book out on the web?

We can have the same fun we are having now, but help supplement our incomes as well.

Listen to Grammy Sunbonnet when she says,
“We’re not going to get by on our good looks alone.”


Orchard House, the home of Little Women in the book, and the
Alcott family in real life, is now a museum in Concord, MA. Their
gift store sells Isabel’s book, The Wisdom of Little Women.

Say, BlogHers, can’t you take a hint?

Let me know what you think of this. I am counting the seconds
while waiting to hear from you in the Comments below.

NaBloPoMo April 2012


To purchase Isabel Anders’ book:

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Mar 19 2012

Let us use the moment of the Equinox to join together to send Peace, Love, and Light to Mother Earth and to Humanity.

Peace Love, and Light,
Barbara Wolf

What a beautiful place it would be if we could give each other the world.

A world of peace…

Giving each other peace and the world.

From the Global Meditations web site,  Posted March 18, 2012:

The Equinox is March 20, at 1:14 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time, which is 5:14 a.m. UTC, Greenwich time.

Will you observe the moment of the Equinox by sending Peace, Love, and Light to humanity and our earth? Your brothers and sisters will be observing.

World Clock will convert your time.

Can you conceive of the positive energy that is created when so many are thinking the same thing at the same time?  Peace, Love, and Light — this world needs a boost of this energy.

Yearly, at the moment of the March Equinox, the Japanese Peace Bell is rung in the Rose Garden at the United Nations in New York City.

Masahiro Kataoka Nakagawa placed the Japanese Peace Bell at the UN in New York in 1954.

Singer Pete Seeger rings the United Nations Peace Bell
in New York City on Earth Day 2009.

In 1969, John McConnell pointed out the need for humanity to respect and preserve the beauty and ecological balance of Mother Earth, and he proposed that Earth Day should be yearly celebrated. This proposal was supported by United Nations Secretary General U Thant, Margaret Mead and many others, and soon the concept spread world wide. A tradition began of ringing the United Nations Peace Bell at the moment of the March Equinox.

In 1998, John McConnell invited me to the ringing of the peace bell Equinox ceremony and I have attended nearly every year since. Today his age prevents him from attending, and so I take a birthday card to the ceremony for all to sign. His birthday is March 22, and he was born in 1915.

Let us use the moment of the Equinox to join together to send Peace, Love, and Light to Mother Earth and to Humanity.

Peace Love, and Light,
Barbara Wolf

NaBloPoMo March 2012

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Jan 30 2012

Morna, CEO/Founder
The International Association of Professional Quilters

In every creative person’s life there comes a point where one turns a corner. Creating starts out small as a new skill is learned or technique attempted. Quickly, though, as expertise and satisfaction grow, the sewer, crafter, painter or other artist begins to enjoy creating an abundance of wares. And therein lies the problem.  A business is the natural answer, but one that requires developing a new set of skills. Successful artisans don’t always have what they need, experience-wise, to create cash flow while maintaining stock, taking care of financing and taxes as well as government regulations and oversight.

New business owners are often disappointed when realizing they don’t get to do their artwork as much as before opening their business. Soon, administrative duties may seem to require more time than creative planning and fulfillment. Pushing papers and following regulations become overwhelming without a dependable plan for organization. So, what DOES one do to keep up with it all?

These WACs from WWII are discovering how much it takes
for administration. There’s lots to do!

I know a quilter who just might have the answer. But! She’s not just any quilter. Morna McEver Golletz is a quilter who’s also a journalist. It was only natural, therefore, that she become the Editor of The Professional Quilter magazine and she has successfully managed this publication, steadily increasing its subscriptions for many years.

Then Morna founded the International Association of Professional Quilters, connecting quilt related business owners from all over the world. With her business savvy and enthusiastic outlook, she is a gifted in mentoring new and prospective business owners. That’s is why I am writing about Morna today. Morna has broadened her business advice to include all those who create and want to sell their creations. She is having a big gathering, the Creatives Arts Business Summit, March 29-31, 2012, near Dulles airport in Washington, DC that I introduced to BlogHer before the holidays and there is still time to sign up to be included.

Even better perhaps, if you don’t have the time to travel, are her mentoring videos that are currently being promoted. She can tell you all about it, so click “play” and let me introduce you to Morna:

Morna is ready and happy to share her years of experience.
She asks you not remind her how many years it has been.

Morna’s videos offer her years of business experience in an easy to digest form. And, the best thing is that you get to try them out and see if they work for you.  She is offering the first videos in the series for FREE!

Go here to learn more:

In this free training program, you’ll discover: 

1) The key to creating structure in your business

2) What the right planning strategies are for you

3) What key resources you should have in order to leverage the Internet for your business

4) How to set a clear line of demarcation between business and hobby and to make sure you are on the business side of it

5) And a lot more!

Join Morna for this free 4-part training program and begin taking your business to the next level. The training program is three videos followed by a live call on February 6 at 4 pm eastern.

 Click here to register and you’ll get the first video immediately.

See what you think of Morna’s approach. In business,
I’ve found, there is always more to learn!

NaBloPoMo January 2012

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Dec 15 2011

Electronic Benefit Transfer cards, EBTs, have replaced
the Food Stamp vouchers that were used for years.

When someone close to you dies and passes over, the biggest shock is that the world still goes on. As you sit on a park bench, numbly trying to collect yourself and make sense of things, there are children gaily playing on sunny days where everyone is the world is happy…except you.

And when my family’s income shifted and then became non existent, I was amazed how similar feelings of being on the sidelines kept me separate from the flow of what everyone else was doing. Once again, there were pretty summer days and children playing while friends seemed to be doing the most frivolous things. Life was going on, whether or not we knew what we were eating for our next meal.

For example, while we were so hungry and wondering what to do to move forward, we interacted with people actually worried about matching new china to drapes at their ski cabin in Vail, Colorado. While I was trying to make $400 in food stamps last a month to feed a family, I had to listen politely to friends telling me their vacation plans. I really felt like I was on the outside looking in and it was a very isolating feeling.

Living on the amount of food that Food Stamps provide
is very difficult. In 2008, we were on Food Stamps and
believe me, it was a big challenge to stay healthy.

And so, things are better now, but I have not forgotten where we were not so long ago. That’s why, I want to share with you who might be facing similar hardships, or who may desire a better nutritional life while living on a fixed income. I find that many of the skills people had in times past have been forgotten and rather than reinventing the wheel, you are welcome to rely on what my family learned. We could have lived much better with more bang for the buck if we had known, what I am going to share with you, from the get-go.

By the way, we did not learn all of this by ourselves.  Much of it was taught by two friends who understood our situation, perhaps better than we did at the time. These two devoted “angels” came over every Sunday and brought food and cooked it for us so we learned to eat nutrient dense food in order to eat less and enrich our bodies more. The methods were so effective, we didn’t stop once things eased up financially. Now, we have been following the tenets of the Weston A. Price diet for three years, feeling really good and spending MUCH less than we used to on food.

Here’s a shocker! These poor children from the Depression
had less food than you do, but were probably better nourished
than you are. We all need to eat from the Way-Back Machine!

Because of our two friends we learned to include more probiotics, that is more living culture of microorganisms in our food to help us digest and use the nutrients in our nutrient dense food. Did you know that the key to health is the number and kinds of microorganisms in your gut? Each of us should have about three pounds of microorganisms in our intestines to help us digest our food. Most of us don’t have anywhere close to that. So, we suffer with non-nutritive food and an inability to properly digest resulting in modern day malnourishment.

To be healthy, active and wholly engaged in life like
these two requires functional digestive tracts
full of microorganisms.

But, hey! Don’t take my word for it.  Did you know there are whole web sites devoted to the study of the micro-flora of the intestines? Yeah! it’s true. They even have a BLOG.  Go here to see and read this:

“The growing awareness that the functional integrity and microbial residents of the intestinal tract may play a mediating role in both skin inflammation and emotional behavior has shed further light on yet another dimension to the relationship between dermatology and mental health.”  

So, if I had to make a list of what to do for the paycheck
challenged, what would it be? Well, thinking about it
tonight, I would say:

1. If you are still drinking tap water, I would stop it and drink only filtered, reverse osmosis water with 40,000 Volts! minerals added.

2. With the money I had, I would buy a gallon of Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar and a quart of unfilterd raw honey. I would go to Patricia’s Bragg’s website and read up on what to do with both of them in Ms. Bragg’s book Apple Cider Vinegar Miracle Health System.

3. I would buy only organic potatoes, organic corn and organic pasta for my starches. Avoid non-organic potatoes, corn and wheat like the plague.

4. Buy organic cabbage and make natural, probiotic laden sauerkraut from the recipe found in the cookbook Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon.

5. I would buy good organic whole grain bread. Without an organic bakery or making organic bread at home, I would look for Ezekiel Bread, made from organic sprouted wheat. It is often found in the freezer section.

6. Buy raw milk and make kefir and yogurt, once again to increase the number of probiotics in the gut. Instructions for making kefir from raw milk can be found on the Your Family Cow web site.

7. Buy small organic, grass fed cuts of beef and organic free range chicken and turkey and make soup with organic vegetables, frozen if necessary in winter and good water, see Step #1.

8. I would buy organic coconut oil from Tropical Traditions and take one tablespoon everyday as a natural antibiotic to help with a compromised immune system that sometimes comes from financial stress. Now is the time to stay healthy to be able to dig your way out. Also, it is better to cook with coconut oil, rather than olive oil or butter, because coconut oil has healthier properties at high temperatures.

9. I would avoid canned food, opting for frozen to stay away from food that has been in contact with metal for prolonged periods of time.  This is especially true with tomatoes. Eat tomatoes that have been canned in glass, not metal, even if the cans have been coated.

10. I would stop eating ALL restaurant food. Unless the restaurant is organic and provably so, I wouldn’t eat there. Prolonged food storage requires additives and I believe those chemicals are not good for us. Many prepared foods actually contained neuro-excito toxins that over stimulate our brains to think food tastes good when it really doesn’t. That is how MSG functions and why it is found in so many prepared foodstuffs. And besides! Think of how expensive restaurant food is compared to buying the ingredients and making your own.

So, that’s the list. If you are interested in improving
your health and fattening your wallet, just do a few of
these at a time. Any change will be for the better with
the favorable results quickly noticeable


See what you think and let me know if this interests you!


NaBloPoMo 2011

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Dec 03 2011

TomatoFest seed packets hold endless possibilities.

My package came! My TomatoFest order! Remember last week, I was so excited to tell you that the TomatoFest Annual Seed Sale is in full swing and going on until January 11, 2012 or until the seed runs out, whichever comes first. I mentioned that when the announcement e-mail arrived in my in-box, I ordered right away, to make sure I was included on my list of favorites. And, with the usual fast turn around time, my package arrived five days later. Way to go, Gary and Dagma, the tomato loving couple that owns and operates TomatoFest.com.

Dagma Lacey of TomatoFest with a display of heirloom tomatoes.

But, when I went through my order, there was a surprise: a Fuzzy Bomb! What!?!? A Fuzzy Bomb tomato? Yes! Right there in my opened mailing package of seed packs was a free gift from TomatoFest. The was a packet of Fuzzy Bomb tomato seeds that I have never heard of, much less eaten. So, I had to RUN to the computer and look it up in the descriptive entries of TomatoFest’s 600 varieties.

Turns out, a Fuzzy Bomb is so named because the plant that bears the Fuzzy Bomb tomato is, you guessed, fuzzy. Apparently it has little white hairs all over the stems and leaves. Sounds like a show stopper and a great conversation piece for the vegetable garden. I was very happy with my new found tomato friend in my free packet of seeds. Here is the photo from the TomatoFest on-line catalog:

The Fuzzy Bomb tomato is a late season indeterminate,
meaning the plant bears fruit late in the season and
grows to be tall and bountiful, rather than short and
compact like a determinate tomato plant.

The Fuzzy Bomb is a large potato leaf plant with white fuzz all over, developed by Tadd Smith of Franklin, N.C. The entry notes that the plant and fruit resemble the Angora tomato variety while producing 12 to 16 oz. fruits with very nice flavors. Reading about those white fuzzy leaves and stems, I wanted to see a photo and I did find another view of the Fuzzy Bomb tomato in the Heirloom Vegetable archives, found here, although it is pretty hard to see the namesake leaf and stem fuzz.

The Fuzzy Bomb in the Heirloom Vegetable Archives.

The Heirloom Vegetable Achives also mentioned that Fuzzy Bomb tomatoes measure about 5 inches across and are very tasty. The leaves are called “potato leaved” because they are shaped more like the leaf of a potato plant than the shape of most tomato plant leaves. This entry also mentions the white fuzzy stems and leaves. What great resources are the on-line tomato “dictionaries” of both TomatoFest and the Heirloom Vegetable Archives. In addition, the Tangager’s Song directory has great listings, so between the three, one may find almost any tomato variety detailed and photographed for identification.

The excitement I feel ordering seeds and planning next year’s garden really gets me through the winter months when the world is dormant and waiting for spring. Getting into heirloom tomatoes, specifically, has made the endeavor all the more exciting because of the wide range of colors, sizes and flavors from the older varieties of tomatoes found all over the world.

And, the best of all? Heirloom tomatoes seeds have never been “messed with,” that is, genetically modified by laboratory means, so they maintain our planet’s true and natural biodiversity. And, even more importantly to the home gardener, heirloom seeds have not been genetically modified to be sterile suicide seeds. The seeds you collect from your heirloom tomato plant fruits will be fertile so you can grow crops from them without buying new seed packets every year. What a fun, tasty, economical win-win for all those growing heirloom seeds. If you haven’t tried it, make this next year the year you do!

NaBloPoMo 2011

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NaBloPoMo November 2012