Monday, June 30, 2014

Volunteering



-- Quote of the Day -- 

"One day at a time – this is enough. Do not look back and grieve over the past, for it is gone; and do not be troubled about the future, for it has not yet come. Live in the present and make it so beautiful that it will be worth remembering."

~ Ida Taylor



-- Volunteering -- 
 

Volunteering, according to a university study done in the UK, has all kinds of positive results from lower depression and 22% reduction of early death. 

There are estimated to be 1.3 million volunteers in Canada (1.5 million of those are here in BC) bringing an economic value of more than $50 billion dollars every ear.

For more information about the benefits of volunteering and to network with others check out the resources below:





  Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, their radio program, blog, and more at: http://brummet.ca * Support the Brummets by telling your friends, clicking those social networking buttons, or visiting the Brummet's Store - and help raise funds for charity as well!




Sunday, June 29, 2014

Green



-- Quote of the Day -- 
 
Fifth Group’s Steve Simon was speaking at a conference  about how implementing sustainability programs into businesses requires patience and determination, but the reward is great:

“When you implement sustainability projects at your restaurant, understand from the outset that persistence is key... Start slowly and then build up your efforts to meet the goals you have set. At Fifth Group we started with waste diversion and instructed our staff on how to recycle, then source separate organics. Of course there were challenges, but we eventually were able to divert hundreds of thousands of pounds of former ‘waste’ from the landfill…in every location. It has cost us virtually nothing to implement and it’s the right thing to do.”


-- Green Building -- 


I read recently about an interesting zero-energy house was created by The Shibaura Institute of Technology, winning them awards for just how green it is. 

The house has, of course, a passive solar design and a solar energy roof, but also has heat collection panels and a ventilation layer so that it can actually harvest energy from the sun in the form of heat, light and electricity.

The solar heated hot water also runs through both the ceiling and the floor during the winter months where it provides radiant heat. 

Additionally it has a safe room where the residents can go during a disaster for safety.

 
  Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, their radio program, blog, and more at: http://brummet.ca * Support the Brummets by telling your friends, clicking those social networking buttons, or visiting the Brummet's Store - and help raise funds for charity as well!

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Living Today



-- Quote of the Day -- 

"As we may miss the joy of life by dwelling on the past, so we miss the possibilities of the present if we expect life’s best days to be in the future. The good days are now."

~ Lionel Whiston

 -- Living Life Today -- 

Today's quote has some importance in my life... After the suicide of my mom and step-dad, the loss of other family members and friends, witnessing illness and age-related emotional and physical woes... I realized that today is my golden moment, and to stop working and staking my hopes on some day in the future that may never come. 

Taking time to live: to enjoy nature, to spend time with our fur-kids and playing in the garden, to leave a positive legacy every single day, to embrace the moment.

One has to find a balance here of course because our lives, or our capacity to really live our lives, may not end tomorrow... we might reach retirement in good health, we might live a long time after retirement. So living now in balance with planning for the future - but not counting on the future. If that makes any sense. 

I'd had a couple wake-up calls in this regard from a vehicle accident to deaths in my circles, and I felt that I was making headway in regards to wrapping my mind around this concept (above) and starting to employ it in baby steps. After the loss of my parents it kicked into high gear and I'm even more determined to finish the two manuscripts in my office, to plant more trees, to go camping more, to laugh more, to open my heart more - as opposed to worrying about paying down debt and whether we'll have a retirement plan.

All that I really know I have is this moment - this breath - this second... and what concerns me most is: Did I really live it? Did I make the most of it? Will I leave this world with things unspoken or regrets? Did I use that valuable moment to make a difference?

So I'll leave you with that thought of the day to mull over ...



  Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, their radio program, blog, and more at: http://brummet.ca * Support the Brummets by telling your friends, clicking those social networking buttons, or visiting the Brummet's Store - and help raise funds for charity as well!



Friday, June 27, 2014

Plastic


-- Quote of the Day -- 

"Our affluent society contains those of talent and insight who are driven to prefer poverty, to choose it, rather than submit to the desolation of an empty abundance. "

~ Michael Harrington


-- Plastic --


According to a recent study I read the wide variety of plastics in the ocean are responsible for the loss of one million seabirds and one-hundred thousand marine animals, causing billions of dollars of economic impact. And, according to Seas At Risk (http://seas-at-risk.org) 85% of marine litter is plastic. 

Sadly much of this comes from runoff, streams, creeks, wind-blown garbage drifting to larger bodies of water where rivers shoot all the waste to the oceans. Some of you may have read my posts or heard me talking on my radio show or as a guest on other radio shows or perhaps read my chapter on clean walking and on plastics in our Trash Talk book series... But this study underlines the importance of reducing waste in our individual daily life, recycling as much as we can, and cutting up the plastic can holders before recycling. Just as important - cleaning up while we are walking from place to place, simply picking up the waste where we see it makes a huge difference in the damage to the environment and making sure as much of that as possible is recycled creates jobs and stimulates the economy. Whether you are on a beach or shore line, walking along a creek or river, in the park or in the alley behind your home or office... you'll find all kinds of opportunities for making a positive impact if you keep your eyes open for misplaced waste.



You might be interested in this amusing animation published by Joan Marc Simon about the world’s plastic problem: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0g_lpmcOyWk&feature=youtu.be



Trash Talk - It's Easy To Be Green
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Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, their radio program, blog, and more at: http://brummet.ca * Support the Brummets by telling your friends, clicking those social networking buttons, or visiting the Brummet's Store - and help raise funds for charity as well!







Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Joys of early summer



-- Joys of Early Summer -- 

Ah.... the joys of early summer! Birds are cleaning out our bird feeder every few days, and the suet block we keep stocked under the pine tree's boughs is a special favorite of the birds. They are getting braver now that they are used to us and hang out even when we are working in the area of the feeders. I'm hoping that, like our last place, they do a lot of beneficial work for us keeping the pest insect population in check. :)

The last couple weeks we've been harvesting mountains of strawberries - starting with only a few cups of whole berries, I'm now filling a large bowl (12 cups approx.) with medium to large berries every other day! Because of the cooler rainy/cloudy weather we've had a couple times the last few weeks - I've been doing more baking - freezing most of it for snacks during the summer. I did 3 batches of cookies, 3 batches of 2 different kinds of muffins (strawberry bran and rhubarb)... a strawberry/rhubarb crisp (which we devoured) and one batch of strawberry jam. Whew! In fact my rhubarb has been harvested so much that I bartered with a neighbor for some of hers and in exchange gave her a basket of strawberries. Ain't it grand to have gardening neighbors? Now it is time to start freezing some strawberries for smoothies, etc. 

I've also harvested the last of the cool crop lettuce and greens from the garden, and while I did plant summer lettuce several times - something keeps eating them. I'm thinking it is slugs, but it could be something else. Such is the gardener's life... there is always something going on and something always fails. :)  

We've had several side dishes of steamed greens (chard, kale, beet greens, etc.) and I just harvested another large bag worth of those this morning. I still have a lot of dried herbs from last year so thankfully the herbs I do have now are for fresh eating... which is a lot less work for me. :)  

My kitchen looks like a tornado hit it this morning (again) so I'm off to take care of that. It is also time to plant succession crops of beets and carrots and lettuce (again) out there so those are my goals this morning now that the harvesting is done. My hands are showing signs of drying out with all the kitchen and garden work, so I might put off the rest of the garden work for tomorrow! Besides, it is time to schedule in this week's blog posts.



  Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, their radio program, blog, and more at: http://brummet.ca * Support the Brummets by telling your friends, clicking those social networking buttons, or visiting the Brummet's Store - and help raise funds for charity as well!



 

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

World of Writing, Interview



World of Writing, Interview

Today's guest is Beverley Golden -  Canadian writer, raconteur, peacenik and self-professed guinea pig, who loves testing unconventional ways to shift paradigms in the playing fields of health care, storytelling and world peace. She courageously uncovers the humour in life’s crazy situations, offering hope, while promoting inner wisdom through the written word. “Trust your intuition even when no one else sees your point of view” is her signature mantra.

Confessions of a Middle-Aged Hippie, her first book, bursts with anecdotes from her years in the entertainment industry, coupled with her stories of survival from a life lived with health issues. Her passion is turning the “impossible” into the possible and her often thought-provoking observations can be found on the Huffington Post, among others.

Visit her on: www.beverleygolden.com
 

Q: As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

A: As a child, I was a very curious and cerebral. I didn’t like getting dirty and was fascinated by words, asking a lot of questions from a very early age. My mother tells me given the opportunity; I would read to my kindergarten class or to anyone who would listen. I observed the world around me and had a voracious imagination.

At one point when I was quite young, I believe I wanted to be a teacher. Then the next memory is that I wanted to be rich and famous. That’s what happens when you’re an air sign with five other planets in air. Lofty ideals and dreams. J

Q: What makes a good story?

A: To me, a good story is one where the reader feels they are part of the conversation or story. Where they are drawn in and see themselves in what they are reading.

That’s the style of writing people tell me I have developed, that of a conversational storyteller. My goal is to stimulate ideas and inspire conversations, and to get others to start asking questions of themselves and then to take those conversations out into the world. 

Ultimately we all have the power to contribute to making positive changes in the world, just through this simple act of asking questions that lead to taking action. I honestly believe that we all have unique and fascinating stories to share.




Q: What makes you write in certain genres?

A: With all my writing so far, I have chosen to stay with non-fiction, although in my first book I’m told that having a fictional interviewer talking with the real me, is quite a first for a memoir. 

Non-fiction feels closest to home for me, as I can draw on my own personal experiences and then do some observation and research of what is current in our culture, to meld the two together, offering an invitation to the reader to start a conversation.  Most of my writing these days is shorter articles that are shared online on various sites. 

Q: Do you insert your own characteristics in your writing?

A: Interesting question, as I also started writing a young adult book, a book that is theoretically a fiction book, yet the female protagonist and her mother have many of the traits that I see in myself.  Traits that I stand for in the world.

I’ve read that the best way to write is to “write what you know” and although this seems the most accessible and natural way to write, I’ve also tackled a project about golf and life. Although I know about life, I’ve never played golf and am finding that “writing what you don’t know”, can be equally exhilarating. This book has my co-collaborator as the protagonist, as it is his story. It reads like fiction, yet is based on what he knows and what I don’t know, if that makes sense.

Q: What are your favorite publicity activities?

A: Because I love having conversations, I would have to say so far, number one is having radio conversations.  There are such a wide variety of people hosting interesting platforms and it seems there is room to have conversations about topics that interest and resonate with us all.

I’ve done everything from a Christian radio show to talk about monogamy, to a business show where the discussion took a U-turn when the host and I realized we had both transformed similar health challenges in our lives. Love the synchronicity of how that happens!

Q: Who are your favorite authors/poets?

A: One of my favourite authors is Steven Pressfield. Mainly his non-fiction books. I can only encourage anyone who is creating or wanting to create something meaningful out in the world (which means everyone), to read Steven’s outstanding book, The War of Art.  Simply brilliant and once you read it, you will understand why. His follow-up books to The War of Art, are equally incredible reads. 

I’ve also enjoyed reading Seth Godin, especially Tribes, although all his writing strikes a chord and resonates for me. 

Q: What is your most embarrassing writer moment?
A: This would have to relate to an article I wrote about finding your authentic swing in golf and in life. I included a quote from Steven Pressfield’s golf classic The Legend of Baggar Vance and when I sent the piece to Steven to read, he quickly sent me a very lovely and supportive note, letting me know that this quote did not actually appear in the book, but was only in the movie, whose screenplay was written by another writer, not him.  Yikes!  Talk about embarrassing, however, he was very gentle and I learned a great lesson, which he offered to me about double and triple checking sources - a key to maintaining your integrity as a writer. 

Q: What is your writer's life philosophy?
A: This is a great one for me to end on.  When people ask about process, I am happy to say that my process has to do with trusting having no describable process. Inspiration and trusting the muse are very important to me as a writer. 
Sometimes I wonder when the inspiration will strike again, and when it does, it always surprises and enlivens me. When the words, and sometimes seemingly unconnected ideas flow, I acknowledge that I’m writing from a place of pure creativity, and have gotten out of my own way to let something magical happen.
I’ve learned to go with what works for me as an individual, something I would encourage all writers and creative people to do. Find what works for you and trust it! 

  Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, their radio program, blog, and more at: http://brummet.ca * Support the Brummets by telling your friends, clicking those social networking buttons, or visiting the Brummet's Store - and help raise funds for charity as well!

 

Monday, June 23, 2014

Of Gardens & Seeds


 -- Quote of the Day -- 

"Birds sing after a storm; 
why shouldn't people feel as free to delight 
in whatever remains to them?" 

~ Rose F. Kennedy


-- Gardening -- 


Seeds of Diversity (Seeds.ca) announced the number of gardening events were listed on their site has quadrupled in just 13 years, proving the growing interest by Canadian gardeners. 

Check out the organizations new Seed Explorer tool – where you can learn the details of more than 3000 seed varieties:



Sunday, June 22, 2014

Recycling News



-- Quote of the Day -- 

"We don’t accomplish anything in this world alone… and whatever happens is the result of the whole tapestry of one’s life and all the weavings of individual threads from one to another that creates something."

~ Sandra Day O’connor


-- Positive News -- 


Kudos to Chiba (a city in Japan) who has achieved the highest rate of recycling in the country of Japan. 

At 31.4% they are more than 5% ahead of the next 2 top recycling cities. 

Congratulations to this city for their success!

 
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 Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, their radio program, blog, and more at: http://brummet.ca * Support the Brummets by telling your friends, clicking those social networking buttons, or visiting the Brummet's Store - and help raise funds for charity as well!


 

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Trembling Touch

-- Quote of the Day -- 

"The life I touch for good or ill will touch another life, and that in turn another, until who knows where the trembling stops or in what far place my touch will be felt."  

~ Frederick Buechner


-- The Power of One Person -- 

I am so inspired by the quote of the day that I wanted to expound on it just a little. You've heard me chat here on this blog about how one person can make a difference... even small every day actions can have an impact. 

For instance when I am online using social media networking sites, I make a conscious effort to avoid posting anything negative. I refuse to comment on negative posts, or posts that point out the harsh realities of life on this planet. Instead - I choose to post as much positive information as I can, along with helpful resources, links to articles or organizations, quotes, and anything that will help push humanity to a more conscious, proactive path.

I want to support those in my network that are trying to make the world a better place by forwarding their posts to others - sharing them with my circles and gaining the topic more attention.

If there is an event that I feel is important, no matter where it is located, I will share it because you just never know who is going to read it.  

There are major marketing companies out there watching what we do online, especially on places like FaceBook, Twitter and LinkedIn. What we talk about, what we share, links we follow, friends we follow, etc. As such, these companies are influenced by our actions and they consult with their clients ranging from politicians to businesses - telling them where society will head in the next few weeks, months, or years.  

So I encourage our readers here to be more conscious of this fact and to use it as a tool to better society.

 Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, their radio program, blog, and more at: http://brummet.ca * Support the Brummets by telling your friends, clicking those social networking buttons, or visiting the Brummet's Store - and help raise funds for charity as well!

 

Friday, June 20, 2014

Working with Nature


 -- Quote of the Day -- 
 
"To find the universal elements enough; to find the air and the water exhilarating; to be refreshed by a morning walk or an evening saunter... to be thrilled by the stars at night; to be elated over a bird’s nest or a wildflower in spring — these are some of the rewards of the simple life."

 ~ John Burroughs




-- Positive News -- 

Check out this link below to learn how water canals can provide useful space for solar panels. I think it is a phenomenal idea that will also shade the water, reducing algae issues and evaporation as well. 





  Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, their radio program, blog, and more at: http://brummet.ca * Support the Brummets by telling your friends, clicking those social networking buttons, or visiting the Brummet's Store - and help raise funds for charity as well!


Thursday, June 19, 2014

poetry



-- Quote of the Day -- 

... actually an excerpt from a poem...

 
He clasps the crag with crooked hands;
Close to the sun in lonely lands,
Ringed with the azure world, he stands.
The wrinkled sea beneath him crawls;
He watches from his mountain walls,
And like a thunderbolt he falls.

~Alfred, Lord Tennyson, The Eagle


 -- Poetry -- 

Since I started today's post with poetry, I thought I'd continue the theme.
This poem is excerpted from my 1st book of poetry: Towards Understanding and speaks about the human impact on the environment.  I use the term "men" - as in mankind. This poem was written as lyrics, but works as a poem as well.


How Can They Be So Cruel?

Yeah, I heard from a friend
Mother Earth's life will end 
In explosions of death, sorrow and pain;
And they tell me the cause is men.
How can they be so cruel?
Yeah they hurt her, and purge her,
They burn her, and posion her rain...
They chop her down, right down to the ground.
Tell me now, why aren't they ashamed?
Don't all children treat their mothers
With anger and blame?
They'll hurt her, abuse her
Til she cries out her pain.
Her restless children - untamed.
Now these children fight one-another each and every day.
They are consumed with their own personal gain.
So they rob her and rape her 'til she bows down,
And there's nothing left butinfertile ground.
Her violent children - untamed. 
Now this mother, like all mothers,
Forgives all that she can,
And she still holds out her nurturing hand. 
Though she dies, we just build more tools.
How can we be so cruel?
Yeah, we rape her, we purge her and poison her rains;
Cut her forest, burn her soil and feed on her grains.
We are stealing her soul, it's beyond her control.
We've got to stop it somehow -stop it right now!
How could we be so cruel?

©Lillian Brummet

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 Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, their radio program, blog, and more at: http://brummet.ca * Support the Brummets by telling your friends, clicking those social networking buttons, or visiting the Brummet's Store - and help raise funds for charity as well!