Thursday, June 27, 2013

❀ The Good News ❀



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Stop watching the News on T.V. filled with lies, propaganda, and made to make you feel helpless and afraid.

With all the negative news in the world, it's time to give you hope and inspiration. It's time to the weekly Good News! 
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Puerto Rico to Turn Trash into Energy
Puerto Ricans will soon be turning their trash into renewable energy. On Tuesday, the Environmental Protection Agency announced its final approval of an air permit for a 77 megawatt EfW plant, owned by Energy Answers International, a first for the U.S. island territory.
The $650 million facility, which will be built in three years in the town of Arecibo, will create thousands of direct and indirect induced jobs, and turn more than 2,100 tons of garbage a day into renewable electricity for more than 76,000 homes on the island. Creating domestic renewable energy is a major necessity since Puerto Rico’s electricity is overwhelmingly derived from imported petroleum, natural gas, and coal.

Trio the Three-Legged Lamb Finds Happiness at Sanctuary
Trio, a three-legged lamb, was saved from slaughter and now enjoys her life with her father, Troy, (who was also rescued with her) at the Mino Valley Farm Sanctuary. 
Female lambs usually have one of two endings: they are either sent to slaughter to be used as lamb meat or they are selected to become breeding ewes, where they will be used to unnaturally produce lambs multiple times a year until their bodies can take no more and their production declines, which the industry considers to be around the age of 4, at which time they are shipped off to the slaughterhouse. 
Because of Trio's deformity, and the possible birth defect being passed on to her young, she was sentenced to die with her father. Trio’s second chance came when a kindhearted woman heard about a lamb with three legs and wanted to rescue both her and her father. Most lambs aren't so lucky, so be sure to put up the good fight by not supporting these cruel industries of lamb meat and wool. 

Success! Blue Whale Habitat Saved From Oil Exploration
Endangered blue whale used to be found in almost all the earth’s oceans, but whalers hunted them almost to extinction. While they are now protected, they still face numerous threats. One of these is noise pollution from the high-powered machinery that oil and gas companies use in conducting seismic surveys to locate buried oil and gas deposits. Seismic airgun testing, in which loud blasts are emitted every ten seconds 24 hours a day and often for weeks, has been linked to hearing damage, stress and even death in whales and other marine mammals including dolphins, turtles and fish. 
The waters around Kangaroo Island off the southern coast of Australia have been called a blue whale hotspot, as this is one of the few sites in the world where blue whales return to feed. Improbably, Australia’s Environment Minister, Tony Burke, allowed the company Bright Petroleum to conduct seismic testing in these very waters.
Fortunately, at the end of May, Burke decided to call for further scrutiny about Bright Petroleum’s proposal to explore for oil and natural gas. Needless to say, such a decision is of huge significance to the welfare of the blue whales and other marine life in the waters off Kangaroo Island.
However, efforts to preserve this area must be ongoing. Bright Petroleum has submitted another proposal to conduct testing in the area, though this time it is following a process detailed by Australia’s Environment Department.

Victory! Colombia Finally Bans Animal Circuses
The Senate finally approved the prohibition of use of wild animals in circuses in all Colombian territory. The new law, once approved by President Juan Manuel Santos and the Constitutional Court, gives circuses two years to remove animals from their acts before authorities start imposing the law and fining those who fail to abide.
Circuses that are found to treat their animals particularly cruelly will have their stock removed immediately and will face criminal, House Representative Augusto Posada, proponent of the bill, told media.
Additionally, the law disallows the state to grant circus licenses to new enterprises planning to use use animals in their show.
Colombia is the fourth country in Latin America to ban on circus animals. Bolivia, Peru and Paraguay preceded Colombia. 

Composting May Become Mandatory in New York City
New York's Mayor Bloomberg is hoping his city will adopt a mandatory composting plan that will require New Yorkers to separate food waste from their garbage. Bloomberg plans to get the operation started before his final term as mayor expires later this year, and plans to have a mandatory composting program in place by 2016.
If the endeavour gets off the ground, all 8 million residents of the most populated city in the United States will have to start putting aside food waste and other organic materials, such as houseplants and eggshells, then package them separately to be picked up by specialized trash collectors. If this goes through that will move 1.2 million tons of food waste from the landfills to be used instead as fertilizer or converted to energy. 

Elementary school kids convince Crayola to "colour-cycle" old markers
When kids from Sun Valley School's green team found out that Crayola makes half a billion markers a year, they started a petition asking Crayola to create a take-back program "to make sure markers don't end up in our landfills, incinerators and oceans." 91,498 signatures and one year later, Crayola agreed to create "ColorCycle," a program that will accept used markers and convert them into a liquid fuel source.

Marriage Equality Returns to California, with Strike Down of DOMA
Wednesday, the Supreme Court of the United States struck down Section 3 of DOMA and allowed to stand a lower court’s overturning of Proposition 8.
DOMA Section 3 prevented same-sex couples from accessing more than 1,000 federal benefits, several of them having to do with taxes. Those will now be available to same-sex couples and the Obama administration has already said it will move to cater for this change as quickly as possible.
The demise of DOMA Section 3 is also a boon for binational same-sex couples who previously could not sponsor their spouse for a marriage based green card.
With the strike-down of Proposition 8 means in the next few months, same-sex marriage will once again be legal in the state of California.

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Thanks for reading this week's "Good News!" Join us every week and feel inspired! 
Be sure to sign up for Care2's newsletter for some real news around the globe, to make a change, and to open up your mind to the Real World!
See that your actions count and get out there and do good! Be the Change!  


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Monday, June 24, 2013

☺ Motivational Mondays! ☺



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We're taking back Mondays!!!
"Motivational Mondays" are fabulous tips to get you excited and pumped for the week! 
Feeling low? Moody? Down on life? Well, that's what these posts are for! Time to feel awesome again and get some Positivity rolling! Just because it's Monday doesn't mean you can't have fun, smile, and enjoy Today! Apply these tips to your week and try to tell me that you don't start to see an improvement in your life! ;)
It's all about You! Change your perception, change your attitude, love your life! xo

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Give from the Heart. Giving feels good, for you and others, and it emits a signal to the Universe of abundance. Giving from the heart feels good. Sacrifice, on the other hand, emits a signal of lack and doesn't feel good. Learn to identify the difference between the two. Give from the heart and notice that it feels good.    
Spend time with Animals. I can't even put into words the joy I feel of having my two cats in my life. They give me so much joy and love and that feeling in your heart that swells up into joyous tears. Animals have been proven to be therapeutic and I don't doubt it for one second. Try to spend time with your animal companions, or if you don't have one then head to a shelter because those animals need and deserve love just as much as you do. :)
Work on your Happiness. Depression sucks, it really really does. But what bothers me (yes, I'm being a bit frank here) is when people don't do something about it. I know that for most people it does take a pretty big extreme to finally put your foot down and declare that you are going to change your life. Don't wait. If you're on this blog then I'll take that as a good sign. But happiness take work, it takes retraining your brain, so train that brain every day! It's easy to feel helpless and defeated, but there are so many things that you could be doing. Cut out depressants (like alcohol, drugs, sugar, caffeine, wheat, and/or other food sensitivities), get active at least 30 minutes a day, seek out help, do whatever it takes to get started on the path! 
Pretend you Don't have a Phone! Don't fall into the bad habit of turning to your phone in uncomfortable or "boring" moments. Don't turn to your phone when you're out with friends. Don't turn to your phone period. This week make the conscious effort of leaving the phone at home, or if you can't do that then pretend you don't have one. Remember the days of no cell phones? That's what we're pretending this week. Avoid using it or limiting your use as much as possible.    
Want something? Make a List! If you're trying to find that perfect partner, friend, house, job, or whatever else, then get clear about what you want by writing down a list! The power of writing down what you want makes things 10 times more likely to happen. So take some time and get clear. You can't get too detailed, in fact the more detailed you get the more you are visualizing and feeling your desire into reality. When we were looking for our new home, I kid you not, within a few days of us both getting clear and making our lists we found our perfect place!     
Don't forget to Express your Appreciation!  Tell people how much you appreciate them, it takes so little time and we simply don't do it enough. People are insecure, it's just the way society has taught us to be, so whenever you see people and every chance you get you should remind people that you love them and are grateful for their friendship. Love goes a long way and we all need more love.    
☺  "Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim." ~Nora Ephron. You have a choice in the epic story of your life; be the victim or be the hero. Always choose the hero! Save yourself, be triumphant, be the one that brings joy and awesomeness into your life. Put on your cape and step into the shoes of superhero stardom!   


I love and appreciate you all so much! Have a lovely amazing super duper fantastic epic day and week! :)  

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Friday, June 21, 2013

{this moment} - and the weekly {Smile-Up}


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"There are no ordinary moments." ~Way of the Peaceful Warrior

{this moment} - a Friday ritual. A photo (or few) capturing moments from the week. Simple, special, extraordinary moments. Moments I want to pause, savor and remember.

Served up with the weekly {Smile-Up} - gratitude practices to love and appreciate your life. 

If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' and 'smile up' in the comments for all to find and see.
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my moments are entirely from my Portland trip with my wifey! :)





{Smile Up}:

 First Downtown Summer Market!
Portland road trip with my bestie! 
Amazing Vegan restaurants and food! 
Vegan chocolate candy bars! 
Getting to watch the Pride Parade in Portland!  
New tattoos! (first one in over 2 years--been much too long! And getting it done at a Vegan Tattoo Shop!!)
Singing badly in the car! 
Girly road trips!  
Laughing and smiling and being silly with friends.  
Finding new music to listen to. 
Coming home to my loveable kitties and loving husband.
Internet that works (after terrible internet in our hotel that took ten minutes just to load a page I am very grateful!). 
The sound of rain and the coziness of our home. 
Writing and Drawing more of my book!


Loving: Summer Markets • Creating • Portland • Tattooed people everywhere • Kitty cuddles •  Good Laughs • Rain • Our Garden • Living in Nelson • Dancing in the rain • Balance • Tattoos •  • Writing and Drawing again •

Interests for the week:
Reading "Neverwhere" by Neil Gaiman  
Watched the new Star Trek movie--on our movie theatre we finally have back! 
✯  Watching Anime shows! Woot! Currently still watching D.Gray Man. 
✯  Finished Game of Thrones! New True Blood episodes back!  
Music Playlist: Brand New, Breaking Benjamin, Red, Paradise Lost. And 90s grunge hits on our road trip! 
Food Faves: Kale and Spinach in my smoothies every morning Go Max Go Foods chocolate bars Portland's restaurants Sjaak's Hazelnut chocolate bites Vegan Pizza!   



Lessons of the week: 
Don't judge and don't take it personally when people judge you--it says more about them than you. Balance, balance, balance! I'm a woman, I have tattoos and piercings, I've had dreadlocks, but the thing I'm discriminated most for is being Vegan. It doesn't matter, again, it's a reflection of the discriminators and not you. Remember the spiral: bad mood=bad events; good mood=good events! When you get stressed you resist the current, but when you go with the flow, things turn out much quicker and perfectly. Smiling turns your mood around!   Take time every day for the hobbies you love. Everything is going to be alright!  



Hope you're all having a beautiful wonderful blissful week! Tell me about your lovely weeks! Tell me about your 'Smile Up' and 'this moment!' Pretty please? :)


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Thursday, June 20, 2013

☆ Boycott the Brands that Blocked your Right to GMO Labelling ☆





Prop 37, the California Right to Know GMO labeling initiative, was narrowly defeated thanks to a relentless, deceitful $46-million advertising blitz. Among the largest bankrollers of the NO on 37 campaign were huge multinational food and beverage companies whose subsidiaries make billions  selling some of your favourite organic and "natural" brands.
This is where "greenwashing" comes into play, a company that calls itself "organic" "natural" or "green" but truly isn't. It sucks when some of our favourite brands that are supposed to be good for us and the planet are owned by a greedy corporation that pours that kind of money to oppose human rights to Know what is in our food. You can argue GMOs left and right but at the end of the day, they are dangerous unknown "foods" and if they are so afraid of GMO labelling then isn't that a sign of guilt in the first place? 

Well, we could mope about all this, or we can take action. Join Organic Bytes in the boycott of these companies. 


Please sign the pledge to let the following companies know you're joining the boycott. These companies make billions of dollars selling organic and "natural" brands, yet they spent millions to defeat Prop 37, CA Right to Know's ballot initiative to label genetically modified food. 

• PepsiCo (Donated $2.5M): Naked Juice, Tostito’s, Tropicana, Loóza, Izze, Sabra, Smartfood, Stacy's, Mother's and Near East
• Kraft, recently became Mondelez (Donated $2M): Boca Burgers and Back to Nature
• Safeway (Member of Grocery Manufacturers Association, which donated $2M):“O” Organics
• Coca-Cola (Donated $1.7M): Honest Tea, Odwalla
• General Mills (Donated $1.2M):  Muir Glen, Cascadian Farm, Larabar
• Con-Agra (Donated $1.2M): Orville Redenbacher’s Organic, Hunt’s Organic, Lightlife, Alexia
• Kellogg’s (Donated $791k): Kashi, Bear Naked, Morningstar Farms, Gardenburger
• Smucker’s (Donated $555k ): R.W. Knudsen, Santa Cruz Organic
• Unilever (Donated $467k): Ben & Jerry’s
• Dean Foods (Donated $254k): Horizon, Silk, White Wave


Spread the word and take action, because your voices and your wallets have the biggest impact.



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Tuesday, June 18, 2013

☺ Motivational Mondays! ☺



. . . . . . . . . .

We're taking back Mondays!!!
"Motivational Mondays" are fabulous tips to get you excited and pumped for the week! 
Feeling low? Moody? Down on life? Well, that's what these posts are for! Time to feel awesome again and get some Positivity rolling! Just because it's Monday doesn't mean you can't have fun, smile, and enjoy Today! Apply these tips to your week and try to tell me that you don't start to see an improvement in your life! ;)
It's all about You! Change your perception, change your attitude, love your life! xo

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Always end your day with a Positive Thought. No matter how bad your day may have been, tomorrow is a brand new opportunity to make it better. But if you go to bed in a bad mood you are likely to wake up in the same bad mood. Take a few minutes every day before bed to think about all the things you're grateful for, all the things you love, and all the things you're grateful for tomorrow (even if it hasn't happened yet). Think Positive!  
Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a wonderful stroke of luck. Everything happens for a reason and although sometimes we feel sad about not getting what we want, there is indeed a reason for it. This reason isn't usually easy to accept or to see at the time, but try to remember that the Universe it just looking out for you. The right things will come into your life at the right time. Have faith.  
Enjoy Time Alone. One of our biggest human downfalls is our inability to not only spend time alone but enjoy it. Most of us feel uncomfortable alone, because it is almost taught in our society. That, and it leaves us alone with our own thoughts and feelings and most of us would rather never face such things and live our lives suffering than to face those problems and move forward from them. Being alone should never make you feel uncomfortable, just as sitting by yourself in silence should never make you feel uncomfortable. Time alone is incredibly good for the soul, for healing, for moving forwards. Spending time is an incredible gift, so learn to enjoy and embrace it.  
Not all Attention is Good Attention. Most of us are insecure, it's just one of those things in life that we've grown up to feel. Working on insecurities is important. Realizing the negatives we welcome in our lives as a result of those insecurities is part of that importance. Attention is one of those. Not all attention is good attention and you should learn the difference so that you can move forwards instead of backwards when it comes to feeling good about yourself. Everyone likes to be complimented; compliments are nice. Needing compliments to feel good is bad. Likewise, not all attention from the opposite sex is good attention. For instance, degrading comments should never be welcome, even if in your head it gives you a confidence boost. This is such a deep topic that I will be writing a more detailed post this week. But this week try to become aware of Needing attention, Negative attention, and genuine loving compliments.  
Sing…just for the joy of it! Even if you think you can’t sing, do it anyway. Free your voice, have fun, and sing sing sing! Not only is singing fun, but it also teaches you to laugh at yourself, not take yourself and life so seriously, to be free, and it is a good way to help heal your soul. ;)    
Don't take on the Weight of the World.  It can be difficult when we want to help people, because we usually can't dis-attach ourselves from their problems. We usually end up taking on the weight of another person's problems as if it is our own burden to fix for them. You are never responsible for someone else's happiness or sadness, so never take that on. Do what you can to help others but don't allow your world to fall apart and don't carry their weight. You have enough in your own life to work on without carrying someone else's. And the best thing you can do for another is to be strong and happy with your own life so that you are not only capable of helping them, but can also be an inspiration and a positive force in their lives.    
☺  "The key to happiness is letting each situation be what it is instead of what you think it should be." ~Mandy Hale. Stress happens when the mind resists what is. When you learn to stop resisting what Is, then you'll stop resisting life itself. Accept things as they are and go with the flow.  
Need a pick me up? Check out this adorable puppy that was born with a moustache. Like a Sir!


Create a Nice Day!! 
Much Love from me to you! 

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Thursday, June 13, 2013

❀ The Good News ❀



. . . . . . . . . . 
Stop watching the News on T.V. filled with lies, propaganda, and made to make you feel helpless and afraid.

With all the negative news in the world, it's time to give you hope and inspiration. It's time to the weekly Good News! 
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Victory! Washington University Ends Cruel Cat Lab
Washington University has announced that it will no longer be using cats to teach students in its Pediatrics Advanced Life Support (PALS) course how to perform tracheal intubation.
The change was pushed through thanks to some heavy campaigning and a recent surge in pressure from different fronts including an undercover investigation by PETA, a letter from Bob Barker criticizing the practice and offering $75,000 to buy state-of-the-art infant simulators, local activists holding weekly protests at the school and almost 18,000 signatures on a petition asking the school to stop using cats may have finally pushed the school make the decision.

59 Supermarkets Say No to Frankenfish
Target, along with many other big supermarket chains, has pledged not to stock genetically engineered (GE) salmon in its stores.
A total of 59 retailers have announced that they will not stock GE fish. Along with Target come H-E-B chain (315 stores in Texas), Giant Eagle (387 stores in Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia and Maryland) and Meijer (200 stores in the Rust Belt).
Earlier this year several other major retailers,  including Whole Foods, Trader Joes and Aldi, as well as some smaller grocery sellers, promised that no GE salmon would be sold in their stores.  That makes a whopping total of 4,662 stores around the U.S.

Victory! San Onofre Nuclear Plant Shut Down!
Southern California Edison, the utility that operates the damaged San Onofre nuclear plant, has given up, saying it's not economically feasible to continue trying to repair the crippled reactors.
The reactors were shut down over 18 months ago after the failure of newly installed steam generators caused a radiation leak. 
This is tremendous news for the people of Southern California -- and also for the country as a whole. It's another example of the failed promise of dirty and dangerous nuclear power, and it clears the way for a transition to a clean and safe energy economy based on the sun and wind.

Big Win over Northern Gateway Tar Sands Pipeline! 
In a big win for the spectacular Spirit Bear Coast and its wildlife, the British Columbia government has just announced its formal opposition to the proposed Northern Gateway tar sands pipeline.
This is a key breakthrough in the fight against tar sands development -- and one that would not have been possible without all the online activism. NRDC experts also testified alongside local partners at critical government hearings and uncovered the damning facts about this project and the havoc it would wreak on the spectacular Spirit Bear Coast. 
The battle is far from over as the ultimate fate of the Northern Gateway now rests in the hands of federal decision-makers. Let's keep the pressure and momentum of this latest victory and ensure that the Canadian government rejects this destructive pipeline once and for all. 

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Thanks for reading this week's "Good News!" Join us every week and feel inspired! 
Be sure to sign up for Care2's newsletter for some real news around the globe, to make a change, and to open up your mind to the Real World!
See that your actions count and get out there and do good! Be the Change!  

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If you found this article to be helpful, please consider a small donation or visit the shop. Thank you for your love and support.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

☼ Grow your own damn Food! ☼


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These weekly posts are to share the progress of our garden; sharing photos and our gardening experiments and will hopefully inspire you to grow your own garden too! :) 
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 [happy kale!]

Alright! Missed last week *gasp*

[happy orach spinach]

So, we planted our beans finally. :) They are in triangles around the two bamboo trellis we built (which we moved to the third bed in the back). 


We also planted a row of bolt-resistant lettuce (which I don't remember the name of, I'll dig it up soon!). And we mulched the bed with grass clippings. Everything in this bed is doing nicely. 


[happy swiss chard and pok choi / broccoli] 

[happy lettuce]

Though most of our spinach went to seed. 


Our mustard greens went to seed as well. Our kale is enormous and happy though and we've been able to harvest every single day for smoothies and salads. 


We pulled up the mustard greens, except for a few plants that hadn't gone to seed and some that had so that we can save the seeds later. In place, we planted a cantaloupe and honeydew melon starts that Cory picked up yesterday in town. 


There are two tomato starts we have inside that are doing super well so we are probably going to plant those soon since the starts my sister gave us sadly don't look like they're going to make it. I think the soil is just too dry in the back of that bed so we'll plant these elsewhere. We also have some mountain spinach starts that love the sun so those were planted in the pea bed. So far they look very happy. 


[bolted spinach in the pea bed / new mountain spinach]


Our strawberries are starting to flower so hopefully not too long before we are eating fresh strawberries. 


We also discovered a strawberry plant at the side of our back steps so we should be getting a few strawberries from there as well. 


In the back bed… we staked the tomatoes with bamboo poles. 


The zucchini plants are so happy and getting so big!! We are super excited as we've never been able to grow zucchinis and these are so super happy! Our peppers and tomatoes still look happy as well. :) 




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