Monday, February 28, 2011

Marketing & Alternative Lighting


 -- Quote of the Day --

The will to win, the desire to succeed the urge to reach your full potential – these are the keys that will unlock the door to personal excellence.” 

~ Eddie Robinson
 

-- Chatter --

Apologies, everyone, for the late start this morning on the blog - I usually have the posts up before 9 AM (pacific) - we just had a big morning and I couldn't get to the blog until now.  :)

 -- Brummets in the Media --

I am so very excited to announce that this morning, at 9:20-10:00 AM (Pacific) I was a guest on the Experience Pros.com radio show that airs on AM 560 KLZ live in Denver, CO (USA)... and it can also be accessed via stream at 560TheSource.com  It was a sincere honor to appear on this radio show with hosts Eric and Angel to speak about how one goes about querying the media for attention, what a radio show host's office life looks like, and some insiders promotion tips.

-- Referral Corner --

 * A note of appreciation to cherry for listing us on her Blog-Links page at: cherrymischievous.com/p/friends.html
 
SolaTube.com - this company promotes the use of sunlight and moonlight for indoor lighting in areas like entrances, bathrooms, etc. This works similarly to skylights but is smaller, less invasive, and offers more lighting through advanced optics technology.


Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, information about their radio program, newsletter, blogs, and more at: www.brummet.ca
* Support the Brummets by telling your friends, or visiting the Brummet's Store - every sale raises funds for charity as well!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Positive, Inspiring Information


-- Quote of the Day --

From the Book: The Law of Success, by Napoleon Hill (Orne Publishing) 

Re: a definite purpose in life, that burning desire…

You are a contractor and builder, and, like men who build houses out of mere wood and brick and steel, you must draw up a set of plans… You are living in a wonderful age when the materials that go into success are plentiful and cheap. You have, at your disposal, in the archives of the public libraries, the carefully compiled results of 2000 years of research covering practically every possible line of endeavor in which one would wish to engage.”


-- Conscious Discussions Radio --

Today's Positive Eco-news segment will focus on the topic: Recycling News 

Join live at 10-11 AM (pacific) where you can also drop in the chat room that I will have open for live listeners. Of course the archive will be available for anyone who can't make the live episode :)


*click the links (above) or those located on the sidebar of this blog.

Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, information about their radio program, newsletter, blogs, and more at: www.brummet.ca
* Support the Brummets by telling your friends, or visiting the Brummet's Store - every sale raises funds for charity as well!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Alternative Insulation & Nanotechnology


-- Quote of the Day --

"If you want to live life to the fullest, care for your thoughts as you would your most prized possessions work hard to remove all inner turbulence. 
The rewards will be abundant."  

~ Robin Sharma

-- Chatter --

Well, I am back in the office after taking a full day out of it... actually shut the office door and did not enter the room. Whew! Not so easy to do, you know, with the office right there in the home like that. It felt wonderful to have the day off with my husband, though he had to spend most of the day catching up on our income tax preparations for '10. This time of year is kind of a crunch for most business owners, even really small guys like us, and it can be difficult to take time away. Yet one must take time to refresh their thoughts, realign the posture by getting away from the desk, and disappear for a while in a puzzle book or a great gardening book - even just for a couple hours. 

Sadly, while Feb has been incredibly productive, there are dozens of things left in limbo for one reason or another and our list of to-do's had more things added on it than were scratched off. I was feeling torn between being grateful and feeling inadequate and impotent with so much left undone.  Yesterday was scheduled in as a Day Off, and while I didn't announce it (like I usually do) to let people know, I clutched at it, embraced it, and blanketed myself in it. And while I couldn't take 3 days off in a row, as I do every month, I was able to take a day here and a day there. Anyway - back  in the office today (obviously), with a fresh look at the world in here.

We have a lot going on this week with discussions on foster care, youth, writing and recycling news via the Conscious Discussions Talk Radio show. I have a blog guest coming on later this week and will appear on two different radio shows to discuss our work and passions, and insiders tips re: querying a radio host to appear on their show. So lots going on... keep watching this blog for the announcements and links :)

-- Referral Corner --

Check out these amazing links to a variety of insulation barrier protections, including an ceramic coating with a 19R rating, and some applications of this for homes...

This company is an award winning innovator of sustainablility via nanotechnology, increasing a home or building's efficiency by 20% simply by painting this stuff on. 

These guys offer a broad line of advanced technology coatings and products, including multi-ceramic, high technology coatings that insulate, protect, and preserve a variety of surfaces.

Another eco-company that offers a liquid ceramic insulation coating that can be used in just about any industrial situation for long term insulation needs.

Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, information about their radio program, newsletter, blogs, and more at: www.brummet.ca
* Support the Brummets by telling your friends, or visiting the Brummet's Store - every sale raises funds for charity as well!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Helping Children

 -- Quote of the Day --


Happiness results from a sense of mental and moral contentment with who we are, what we value, and how we invest our time and resources for purposes beyond ourselves.”   

~ David Shi

 -- Conscious Discussions Talk Radio --

Paul Gilbertson and I met via FaceBook where I learned of the Reach A Child Foundation – I was so taken in by their work that I just had to invite him on the show to tell us all about it. Your going to love this… the foundation encourages literacy, helps low-income families, reduces crime in the community, builds positive relationships with the police, while easing stress levels and reducing impact on children in traumatic situations. On top of this the adults involved in these traumatic situations are given some relief, knowing the children are OK. Just how does Reach a Child do all of this? Join us today to find out…  via this link: Reach a Child Org on Conscious Discussions Talk Radio

Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, information about their radio program, newsletter, blogs, and more at: www.brummet.ca
* Support the Brummets by telling your friends, or visiting the Brummet's Store - every sale raises funds for charity as well!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Green Schools

 -- Referral Corner --
Resource: BCGreenGames.ca

*From their website:
BC Green Games is a province-wide competition for Kindergarten to Grade 12 students, designed to encourage action, enable sharing and reward and celebrate the green efforts of schools in BC, Canada. ...developed in collaboration with the B.C. Ministry of Education, the Environmental Educator's Provincial Specialist Association (EEPSA) and the North Vancouver and Richmond School Districts.


--

Kudos to Terasen gas, a Canadian natural gas supplier, who is exploring alternative energy from bio-gas.


Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, information about their radio program, newsletter, blogs, and more at: www.brummet.ca
* Support the Brummets by telling your friends, or visiting the Brummet's Store - every sale raises funds for charity as well!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Nature & Literature



-- Quote of the Day --
 
 “...Plants evolve; colors emerge and fade; fruits ripen and are eaten. Unlike a novel, a garden doesn’t end; it keeps emerging. The garden teaches us lessons about impermanence, about nurturance, about care, about interdependence – plants with other plants, flowers with insects, humans with the soil, the sun, the land, the body with food…” 

~ From the book: Iona Dreaming, by Clare Marcus –


-- Conscious Discussions Talk Radio --

Today's guest:  Dagny McKinley - owner of the Undiscovered Earth Magazine and the Alternative Lawn Care website. She has a rich history including working for the National Park Service and Paramount Pictures, for the Sierra Club, as a dog sledding tour guide… an now – a writer. Obviously we’re going to have a lot to cover with today’s guest. The discussion airs, as always, live @ 10-11 AM (pacific) & will be archived... Access the link here: Nature & Literature

You can also access recently aired Conscious Discussions Talk Radio show episodes via the sidebars on this blog.

 
Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, information about their radio program, newsletter, blogs, and more at: www.brummet.ca 
* Support the Brummets by telling your friends, or visiting the Brummet's Store - every sale raises funds for charity as well!

Monday, February 21, 2011

World of Writing, interview

-- World of Writing --

Today's featured guest has been a holistic family doctor for over 25 years, and while retired from his practice now his work in this regard is only just beginning. Dr. Tom Potisk is author of the popular Whole Health Healing book and is here to speak about his near death experience and how it prompted him to pursue leaving a legacy today, instead of waiting for it to happen. What appeals to me most about this guest is the presence of his passion to make a difference: "I believe that taking more personable responsibility for one’s health especially with natural/holistic methods is the solution to the health care crisis; teaching that is my mission.  I’m delighted to be a part of that." 

 Be sure to check out his website after reading the interview where he has several health information reports for you to access at no cost. Look for his upcoming The Healing Cookbook there as well! -  Find Tom @ TheDownToEarthDoctor.com  or  WholeHealthHealing.com

Q: What prompted you to write this book?

A: I really never dreamed I'd be a writer. I never even learned how to type. My full time career as a busy holistic family doctor, using mainly chiropractic, nutrition, and lifestyle counseling, provided me a very comfortable existence. But I observed all these amazing recoveries in people using natural methods, and found myself saying "Wow, somebody should let more people know about this!" I came to know that I was that somebody. But it took a near death experience to make me take action.

Q: A near death experience?

A: Yes, I experienced a series of ever increasing wake-up calls but I stubbornly resisted. That culminated in me nearly drowning one January afternoon when I broke through the ice of a lake while riding a snowmobile. I survived that horrifying incidence strictly by the grace of God and crawled across the ice in shock and nearly frozen knowing without a doubt, that I had been gifted with a second chance to take action on my calling. The next morning I sat down and started pecking at the keys of my laptop, the book Whole Health Healing
came flooding out like water over Niagara Falls.

Q: What makes your book different than the many other natural/holistic health books out there? 

A: Most of the other books are written by either celebrities or "medical defectors" who have very little formal training or experience with natural/holistic health. Mine is loaded with my experiences and training over my 25 year career helping patients of all ages with problems like migraines, fibromyalgia, hypertension, disc injuries, baby colic, bedwetting, and you name it. 


Also, the other books frequently relent with "Talk to your doctor first before trying...." But they fail to see that people have
been trying to talk to their conventional doctors for decades but are frustrated by the insurance hassles, rushed staff, pharmaceutical industry influence, and are wising up to the fact that the invasive treatments offered (medications and surgeries) carry high risk not to mention expense. My book recognizes the frustration and empowers people to have more control, take more responsibility for their own health, and become free from relying strictly on conventional medical care. 

Q: Does the information in the book eliminate the need for medical care?

A: Not at all, but it does show people how to minimize it, and likely save loads of money as a result. There always will be a need for medical care especially in cases of emergencies or crisis. Ideally the holistic and medical providers should work together for the good of the patient; but that's in a perfect world and I don't see that happening anytime soon. So I decided to take my information directly to the public. I even included a chapter called How to Talk to Your Doctor where patients learn what questions to ask, maintain control, and get the best from both sides.

Q: Questions like?

A: For example, when given a prescription for any non-emergency health situation, patients should ask "Thank you doctor for your recommendation, but will you work with me as I pursue a more natural approach?" I even provide a list of several like-minded questions on a tear out sheet so people who are timid can hand it to their doctors. Be prepared to see a red-faced doctor!

Q: You're known as the Down to Earth doctor. What's with that? 

A: (He laughs) My patients started calling me that a few years ago. At first I wasn't sure I liked it, but now I embrace it because they labeled me well both for my own holistic lifestyle and my conversational teaching ability. ...I'm really quite a simple person.


Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, information about their radio program, newsletter, blogs, and more at: www.brummet.ca 
* Support the Brummets by telling your friends, or visiting the Brummet's Store - every sale raises funds for charity as well!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

plastic shopping bags

 -- Quote of the Day --

"If we are to have peace on earth, our loyalties... must transcend our race, our tribe, our class and our nation; and this means we must develop a world perspective.

~ Martin Luther King Jr.


-- Conscious Discussions Talk Radio --

Topic: Plastic Shopping Bag Issues & Alternatives   Airing @ 10-11 AM, Pacific - a chat room will be open for live listeners. ...Find the best of the 2007 discussions on conscious living in this new series airing periodically in 2011.Today's episode is the first installment of this series - Join in to learn about plastic bag issues, going without plastic bags and plastic bag alternatives with two experts - Tracey Saxby of GreenerFootprints.com & Teri Thomas formally of Sage Green (no longer in business, from what I can tell). Learn about the first city in the world to ban plastic bags and how this sparked the movement we see today toward a shopping bag free society.  

Click the hyper-linked show title (above), or look to the sidebars on this blog for recently aired episodes, or visit our site for a full list of archived episodes on the Conscious Discussions Radio show.


Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, information about their radio program, newsletter, blogs, and more at: www.brummet.ca
* Support the Brummets by telling your friends, or visiting the Brummet's Store - every sale raises funds for charity as well!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

e-waste & obstacles


-- Chatter --

Well, I'm exhausted. The research and outlines for the interviews airing on the Conscious Discussions Talk Radio show in March are complete, registered, and early promotions are done. The Brummet's Muse Newsletter went out on the 15th... and about 15 things got knocked off our project list over the last week alone. While it feels good to have reached a point where I can take some time for other things today, it is with a slight tug in my heart - since there always seems to be so much more to do, and so many darn delays or obstacles to overcome. 

This morning's rush is slowing down, now that the house and office are tidied, the dishwasher run, the laundry folded and the dogs taken care of  - I can finally focus on the blog. I have some seeds to order for the gardening, a workout, and a dozen emails yet to deal with this morning so I'll not chat here long... Let's start with the quote of the day - one that may help me today as well :)


-- Quote of the Day --
 
Just being with nature you see so many amazing things that you miss so often in day to day life. …I see how small I am in the world; and yet how much a part of everything as well. Sometimes you have to take a vacation to get away, …when we have so much right here! …A lot of the challenges that we have in our life; we see them as these insurmountable obstacles to that we just can’t get around – and it is a matter of changing our perspective… and we realize it is not really what you think it is, it is an illusion to test you. …Going back to nature just simplifies the emotional ties they have with others around them… getting them back to that basic simplicity.”   

~ Steve McAllister 

Originates from the Conscious Discussions Talk Radio show interview titled:  Free of Limitations – which aired on Jan 18, 2010. 
*Check it out via the hyper-linked title (above). 


-- Positive Eco-News --

"A single cell phone battery, for example, requires 3.2 tonnes of colbalt ore." ~ Enrique Gili


You may remember some time ago here on the blog discussions about Recycle Bank and TerraCycle, two companies that offer rebates for "waste" that people send them. 

Today I'd like to highlight a similar company, but for e-waste... EcoATM - who works with retailers to offer coupons and sometimes cash for unwanted electronic devices. I learned of this through an article by Enrique Gili (EcoATMs Swap E-waste for Cash) that I received from the Zero Waste San Diego Group, of which I am a member. 

Anyway... the trial run in the San Diego region lasted for one year, and the results have people pretty excited. They use a new technology that is kind of like a vending machine crossed with an ATM banking machine. People deposit the item, and the machine calculates its worth. The company is specifically looking for cell phones, but accepts a few other items - and chooses these items based on the "estimated 12.2 billion dollars of recyclable materials" in phones alone. The cell phones are either refurbished and sold or given to organizations (such as ReCellular) that work with impoverished areas - or they are recycled for the valuable materials.  

EcoATM feels that due to the incredible impact on human rights and the environment, and the stats that show there are up to 150 million cell phones retired each year on this planet - this is a incredibly important project. This version of "urban mining" has the potential of producing 64000 tones of reusable materials. The problem is that less than 2% of these valuable items are recycled. If they go to the landfill, they will release things like copper, cadium and lead into the environment, causing havoc along the way. 

*For more information on this the article suggests that we visit: The Institute for Local Self-Reliance - ILSR.org



Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, information about their radio program, newsletter, blogs, and more at: www.brummet.ca 
* Support the Brummets by telling your friends, or visiting the Brummet's Store - every sale raises funds for charity as well!


Friday, February 18, 2011

Greening the Planet: one home, one business at a time


 -- Quote of the Day --

Find what interests you and that you can do well, and put your whole soul into it – every bit of energy and ambition and natural ability you have.


~ John Rockefeller


-- Brummets in the Media --

Today, Feb 18, @ 12 noon, Pacific, on the From Maui with Aloha radio show with host & Exec producer: CJ. Our topic will be focusing on protecting our minds from negativity, what it means to live consciously, and deciding what our impact will be. This will be a half-hour interview. Join us live, or access the archive at your convenience Location: http://BlogTalkRadio.com/FromMauiWithAloha - Titled: Garbage in Garbage Out

-- Green Business --

I was reading a company's (Primus Canada)promotional materials on how they are making efforts to green the planet. In 2002 they launched an e-billing service that resulted in more than 100,000 of their residential customers getting bills through their e-mail. That is a big reduction in paper, envelopes, and fossil fuels! Primus decided to pass on some of these savings as an incentive to customers signing up for the e-billing service.

The company also decided to "suppress" invoices that were less than $10, and choosing instead to do quarterly billings with these clients. Then in 2004 they increased this option from $10, to a $20 minimum before sending out an invoice.This resulted in a 20% drop in invoices, even with a 20% customer growth. 

The next thing they looked at, in 2007, was reducing print advertising materials and choosing FSC certified paper (Forest Stewardship Council) paper for their printing needs.  More recently they committed to donating funds to Evergreen (a registered charity focusing on creating sustainable healthy outdoor spaces for schools, communities and homes.)

These are some excellent examples of how a fairly large company can, over a few years, make small changes and purchasing choices that will have a profound impact on the planet and society  - while reducing company costs.

Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, information about their radio program, newsletter, blogs, and more at: www.brummet.ca 

* Support the Brummets by telling your friends, or visiting the Brummet's Store - every sale raises funds for charity as well!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Emotional Health & Green Business News

 -- Quote of the Day --

"Courage is the first of human qualities
Because it is the quality which guarantees the others."

~ Aristotle


-- Positive Eco-News -- 

Coca-Cola announced the launch of what it calls new  eco-friendly "green roof" beverage vending machines on September 15,  2010. By attaching green sheets containing a combination of a kind of  moss known as "sunagoke" and artificial turf onto the top of the machine,  the company expects to lower the unit's surface temperature and thereby reduce energy consumption by improving cooling efficiency.

-- Conscious Living --

Communication is part of living consciously, easy to do on a personal level if you love writing - but not so easy to do from person to person. Asking questions and expressing what you really want will avoid misunderstandings and disagreements. Too often we just assume that the other person must know... but they probably don't.

The English language in particular is so open to interpretation by the listeners since words are used in so many different ways to mean different things. And the listener will interpret the words they hear according to what is going on in their own minds. So when listening, experts say that we need to repeat what we heard in a brief review to confirm that we are hearing correctly.
  

-- Conscious Discussions Talk Radio --

We have an internationally renowned guest with us today: Dr Roy Martin who is joining us for, what I think will be, a fascinating discussion on how we can purge unresolved emotions, the ones that are directly affecting our health. We’ll learn how to influence others around us without being pushy or nagging about holistic living, and so much more. 

Join us live from 10-11 AM (Pacific) or access the archive at your convenience... *A chat room will be open for Live Listeners... Click on the link below or look to the sidebars for links to recent Conscious Discussions Talk Radio episodes.

 

Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, information about their radio program, newsletter, blogs, and more at: www.brummet.ca 
* Support the Brummets by telling your friends, or visiting the Brummet's Store - every sale raises funds for charity as well!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Loving Life ?


-- Quote of the Day --

The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts.

~ Marcus Aurelius

-- Loving & Dancing in Life --

Today's special featured guest of the day is Cindy Tuttle - one poet who refills her pen with her heart and lets that flow onto paper. She says "I have a joy of life that I want to share", and tries to offer hope and encouragement in her work. Her degree in Human Service and her term on the Mental Health Advisory Board has certainly played a role in the work she produces today. Find Cindy @: CindyTuttleTheAuthor.com


Joining the Dance of Life!


I feel joy around me
Calling me into the dance
Circling, twirling, laughing

Flowers lend their colorful voice
The birds join in brightly
The sun adds the sound of trumpets

The trees add there sturdy bass
Dancing with nature and love
Come join in the dance!


Love

Many kinds of love exist:
A child’s love for parents,
Love deep within the soul,
The love of a woman for a man,
The love of nature and its glory,
The love of a parent for their child,
The love only a
Grandparent can give
The love of music and dance.

Look at the flowers in spring
proclaiming to the world
“Love is being born every day!"
 

Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, information about their radio program, newsletter, blogs, and more at: www.brummet.ca
* Support the Brummets by telling your friends, or visiting the Brummet's Store - every sale raises funds for charity as well!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Storytellers


-- Conscious Discussions Radio --

Today 10-11 AM Pacific (live) or access the archive at your convenience:

Our guest:  Lucinda Crosby: who is here for a discussion about honoring grandparents and storytellers… This is one woman with some amazing experiences to share about writing and her passion for the planet - with a total of 10 journalism and 3 environmental awards, and her current work as a Water Conservation Educator. Lucinda is a songwriter, and a published author who enjoys writing with a touch of humor. 

Topic:
 

Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, information about their radio program, newsletter, blogs, and more at: www.brummet.ca 
* Support the Brummets by telling your friends, or visiting the Brummet's Store - every sale raises funds for charity as well!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Bio-fuels & Plastic Lumber


-- Quote of the Day --

Of the bio-fuels (we currently know of), I siezed on algae as being a reliable feed stock, it has the properties that has the ability to meet our requirements. …it can use brackish water, salt water… The productivity of the algae is such that it promises to yield more than other alternatives. ...Incubation is the first hurdle – the second one is growing to harvest without culture crashes. …The third one is harvesting the algae out of the water. The fourth is extracting the oil once you’ve harvested it. Algae can help us with our emission issues… capturing CO2 from the air using a design with sodium carbonate dissolved in water... and using a solar heater during the day, the CO2 is forced out in and piped to the algae.” 

~ Ron Brown


 Check out the full interview that aired back on Dec 21/'10, where this quote came from, via this hyper-linked title: Oil from Algae   or via the archive section either on our site: Brummet.ca  or on the Conscious Discussions Talk Radio show page.



-- Positive Eco-News --

Source: Recycling Product News (http://rpn.baumpub.com)

The Bay Bridge, located in California USA, was struck by a large 250-meter long container ship that resulted in a large tear in the vessel's hull - but not a mark on the Bay Bridge itself. Apparently protective fenders that "girdle the piers" were recently replaced with an innovative, shock absorbent synthetic lumber (Trelleborg) called SeaTimber.  This "lumber" is created from a type of recycled plastic material known as HDPE. The fortunate thing about this accident is that had this recent amendment not been in place, the original rotting wood barrier would have provided no protection at all for the bridge.  So I guess you could say that the timing on this construction project couldn't have been better. 

Both SeaTimber and SeaPile products have some exciting properties to it in that it will not shrink or expand, and it will not absorb water - unlike wood. The product can be altered so that it can have different levels of flexibility, lengths and colors. It won't rot or be affected by salt water, nor are they attractive to pests. Because they don't have to be treated with toxic chemicals and preservatives (like wood is) these products are safer to use in a marine environment. The icing on the cake here is that these synthetic lumbers have a lifespan of up to 50 years... compared to up to 10 for wood.

With so many benefits, including the consumption of recycled plastics from collected containers, is that the applications can include: buoys, marine protection, fender systems, mooring hooks, berthing aides, hoses, bearings, and more.

 -- A Note of Appreciation To... --


* Kudos to Terasen Gas, A Canadian natural gas supplier, who is exploring alternative energy from bio-gas.

* Note of appreciation to Rachel Stolle for her support of our work: http://rachelstolle.blogspot.com & auntloubooks.weebly.com


Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, information about their radio program, newsletter, blogs, and more at: www.brummet.ca 
* Support the Brummets by telling your friends, or visiting the Brummet's Store - every sale raises funds for charity as well!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Greener Youth


-- Quote of the Day --

"Self-Discipline begins with the mastery of your thoughts. 
If you don't control what you think, 
You can't control what you do."

~ Napoleon Hill

 -- Conscious Discussions Talk Radio Show --

Today's Positive Eco-News segment will feature information regarding youth and the environment. Keep your pen and scrap of paper handy, since I'll be offering a lot of resources - URL's in particular, that will lead you to some wonderful organizations. 

Join us live (via the hyper-linked show title above) and drop into the chat room, which is always open for live listeners. Or access the archive later on, at your convenience via the same link - or look to the sidebars on this blog.

Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, information about their radio program, newsletter, blogs, and more at: www.brummet.ca 
* Support the Brummets by telling your friends, or visiting the Brummet's Store - every sale raises funds for charity as well!


Saturday, February 12, 2011

Gardening News & Resources


-- Positive Eco-News --

Several Japanese cities (including Toda & Warabi & Saitama Prefecture) started an innovative project that encourages composting by having local residents bring in their kitchen waste using a designated bucket. The staff then use this material to contribute in their composting efforts - and the final product (humus) is used to produce about 80,000 flower seedlings per year. The residents then come back to pick up their allotted number of free flowers (based on their kitchen waste contributions).

This is a fantastic way to divert organics from the landfill, while creating jobs and encouraging gardening  in the city. Greening the city is a big part of being sustainable, and this includes providing foods for the traveling wildlife (birds, pollinators and other beneficial insects). Outdoor gardening can be done in containers virtually anywhere there is room for a potted plant. this could be located beside a gate, or on a patio, window sill, balcony, roof top... or grown up a wall as well.

-- Referral Corner --

Magnegas.com - offers an interesting concept of zero waste, by looking at sewage as a soure of H2 gas. This type of gas, from what I understand, can be used in combination with other fuels such as natural gas and propane

SoilFoodWeb.com - offers a deep understanding of the science of soil, nutrients, compost, biology and organisms that live in the soil... and so on. I've bookmarked their site so that I can go back and read some of the great information there. Gardeners - you don't want to miss out on this one.

*Note: Sunday Gardening segments of the Conscious Discussions Talk Radio show will be starting up again on March 20th. These episodes typically run from March-Sept annually. 

Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, information about their radio program, newsletter, blogs, and more at: www.brummet.ca
* Support the Brummets by telling your friends, or visiting the Brummet's Store - every sale raises funds for charity as well!

Friday, February 11, 2011

World of Writing, Kids & Animals


-- World Of Writing --

As many of our blog readers are already aware, I love to feature others in the writing/publishing industry to share their insights, offer ways for their peers to make a difference in the world, and give a little glimpse into the behind-the-scenes activities in their world of writing.

Today we have Hans and Jen Hartvickson - of Ringtail Learning... their site: MisterLemur.com
This husband and wife teem have a sincere desire to entertain and subtly educate children while reminding parents of their own fun childhood reading experiences through their book: Mister Lemur’s Train of Thought.

Lillian: What inspired you to write this children’s book?

Jen: Hans started writing out of a desire to add more creativity to his life. He has always loved playing with words and finding witty ways to look at things. Part of the fun of writing a children’s book is that it allows you – maybe even forces you – to get back to thinking like a kid. At our age, when you have an imaginary friend who speaks only in rhyme, you typically don’t tell people!

Lillian: Why did you decide to write for the 4-10 age group?

Hans: One of the stories in the book is titled “Timing,” and it probably provides the best answer to the question.

To get an arrow in a bull’s eye,
I have always found it
easiest to shoot the arrow first
then paint the target around it.”

In other words, we started by shooting the arrow (following our hearts and writing what was inside of us), then we shared the stories with people of all ages to figure out the target audience. Based on this feedback, we “painted the target” around the 4-10 year old age group. The 7-10 year old independent readers tackle it on their own with help from the subtle definitions of “big words” included in the book, while kids 4-7 enjoy hearing the cadence of the rhyming stories read aloud.

That said, we have received a lot of heartwarming e-mails from empty nesters who love the book because it reminds them of their own childhood reading experiences. So we may not have painted a big enough target…

Lillian: What have you learned about working with your spouse?

Hans: Jen can be a very focused person, and without that focus this project would never have become a reality. I had to learn that I don’t get to control when this focus happens. With deadlines and long to-do lists, we had to remember not to let our relationship become too “transactional.”

Lillian: What were some of the challenges you faced in writing your books?

Jen: As first time authors, there is some insecurity about how well the content stacks up in a crowded publishing marketplace. As a result, we involved a large number of people throughout the creative process. While their feedback was largely encouraging and we got some very valuable ideas, we also had to balance showing our appreciation with politely saying, “We appreciate the idea, but we’re going in a different direction.”

Lillian: Do you belong to a: writers’ group/animal rights group/ passionate for a particular cause?

Jen: In 2006 we had the privilege of spending a week traveling through the island of Madagascar, off the coast of Africa. It was there that we had our first encounter with lemurs. We spent two days in a wildlife preserve, hiking through lemur-filled forests, and playing with lemurs as we “wooed” them with bananas. We fell in love with lemurs and their curious, social nature. Since coming home, we immersed ourselves in learning more about lemurs, including the dangers they face, primarily through deforestation and poaching.

We give presentations to grade school students and use these as an opportunity to educate them about lemurs. We have “adopted” a lemur at the Duke Lemur Center (the largest center for the study and preservation of lemurs in the world) and are contributing a portion of proceeds from the book to a lemur habitat preservation program that Duke Lemur Center runs in Madagascar. We are also contributing to lemur related causes at the San Francisco and Honolulu zoos. If any of your readers are interested in learning how they can contribute to the preservation of lemur habitat, they should feel free to contact us at misterlemur@misterlemur.com.

Lillian: Why should we care about Lemurs?

Jen: Once you experience the friendly, social nature of lemurs, it is hard NOT to care about lemurs. In addition, scientists have found that millions of years ago, lemurs and humans were related. For this reason, the study of lemurs is also important in understanding our own early human development.

Lillian: Your slogan is “Stories that move kids forward and take parents back.” What does this mean?

Hans: In Jen’s master’s work at the Stanford School of Education, she learned that children often learn best when they are interested and engaged with the subject matter. In writing the book, we wanted to introduce “lemur learning” where children would learn without even knowing it, simply by being engaged with the fun and subtly educational stories of Mister Lemur’s Train of Thought. At the same time, the style is reminiscent of Shel Silverstein era books, and we have had a lot of parents tell us that it “takes them back” to the books they loved as kids.

We are both big believers that education offers many people the pathway to a happier, healthier and more fulfilling life. We recently donated 10 copies of Mister Lemur’s Train of Thought to Children’s Hospital, Boston for a program that sends books home with patients who have limited access to books. One of the most exciting parts of this project has been seeing kids get excited about reading something that is not “empty calories.”

Education is very important to both of us. We met as undergrads at Stanford University and I went on to earn an MBA from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton school. Jen earned a post-graduate master’s degree in Education at Stanford and currently sits on the board of California Dollars for Scholars. We feel that Mister Lemur is a great way to share the value of education with others.

Lillian: What has been the most surprising thing you learned from creating your book?

Hans: I think the biggest surprise has been how many unexpected people have come forward and offered to help share Mister Lemur with their friends, family, schools and communities. We have been overwhelmed by their generosity, time and ideas. When we started this adventure, Mister Lemur’s Train of Thought was a personal journey to bring more creativity into our own lives. As the book matured from concept to reality, we became focused on others and how we could help children expand their vocabularies, learn more about science, and see value in protecting endangered animals like lemurs. Now that it is published, we are finding that Mister Lemur’s Train of Thought is about community. Mister Lemur has re-connected us with old friends, introduced us to new ones, and opened more doors than we ever could have imagined.

Thanks for taking the time to read this. We will leave you with “Train of Thought,” the first story in Mister Lemur’s Train of Thought:
Train of Thought

Come and ride the train of thought,
it doesn’t matter where.
To ride you simply close your eyes
or pick a spot and stare.

Sometimes you’ll be the engineer,
sometimes you’re on the ride,
and on this train you’ll be amazed
at whom you’ll sit beside.

You’ll sit with former presidents,
you’ll fly with astronauts,
you’ll venture with magicians
as you travel through your thoughts.

You’ll wander in the mountains,
and you’ll daydream by the shore,
and often when you board the train,
you won’t know what’s in store.

Stop to read good writers
who are witty and are fun,
‘cause that’s the kind of fuel
on which your train of thought will run.

And if traveling makes you tired
your sleeping car includes a bed,
and your train sets off to dream land,
for more adventures in your head.




Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, information about their radio program, newsletter, blogs, and more at: www.brummet.ca 
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