Thursday, September 10, 2009

Sustainable Living

It is a stormy night here in deep south Alabama. It got me to surfing about for information on my favorite passion, "sustainable living".

Anyway... I was just thinking about how wonderful it would be if everyone started to live and work together in a sustainable fashion in areas with-in their own towns or counties...certainly no larger than counties. Sort of like in the old fashioned times when you had your farmers, your general store, your baker, butcher, blacksmith, doctor, etc., etc.. Everyone had a place and was able to sustainably live with-in these small communities through barter, trade, and a bit of money through selling whatever they had to sell.

This system worked so well and one of the reasons it worked so well is there was not a lot of competition. Why? Because there was not an overly large population.

People cannot stand it when you start to talk about controlling human populations for some reason. Even though it makes total sense and would solve so many of today's problems, to bring it up in this country is all but taboo. You would better be able to talk of something as deplorable as incest as to talk about controlling the size of ones family.

Until we wake up and see that this is as necessary as controlling over-run animal populations with neutering or spaying, our numerous problems cannot be fixed nor will they go away. And by the way...I'm "fixed". I saw the need way back in the early 70's that people had to stand up to the plate and take responsibility for their procreation abilities. I just wish that more people would have thought as I did and do.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Fall Is On the Horizon

This has been the strangest summer I have experienced in many a decade here in southern Alabama. Where was the non-stop heat and humidity? I have no idea, but the insects were ravenous!

My Willow trees were decimated by mealy bugs, the Catalpa trees skellitonized by Catawba worms, and the tomatoes and peppers just sat there doing not much of anything.

I am starting over now that fall is on the horizon with my fall/winter plantings of all different lettuces, spinach, carrots, cabbage, turnips, mustard, collards and any other green that happens to catch my eye while going through my seed drawers.

So far I have quite a few planters going as well as big semi-tires that I have been using as composters all spring and summer and stb fall...the lettuces and spinach are popping up like gangbusters, though they slow down in growth on hot days like today where the temps hit the low 90's. Greens do not like high temps. PERIOD! I might should have waited but I got antsy for something to plant and I have them in the shade of one of my bamboo groves so they are not too unhappy.

I started writing a book awhile back so some of my time has been spent working on that in the evenings. All I will say about it is it is called: The Little Pink Trailer and is about an older lady who moves to Florida and gets heavy into the Permaculture movement with a little love on the side. Nuff said!

I will try and post more often now that it is cooling off for the season. I do so look forward to fall and winter after our long, hot,and humid summers. God bless!



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Be Happy - wikiHow

Be Happy - wikiHow

How to Be Happy

from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

So happiness - isn't that the thing that all of us strive to find and keep? Nobody is happy all of the time, but some people are definitely more fulfilled than others. Studies on what makes people happy reveal that it doesn't have much to do with material goods or high achievement; it seems to whittle down to your outlook on life, and the quality of your relationships with the people around you.


  1. Be optimistic. In the 1970s, researchers followed people who'd won the lottery and found that a year after they'd hit the jackpot, they were no happier than the people who didn't. They called it hedonic adaptation, which suggests that we each have a baseline level of happiness. No matter what happens, good or bad, the effect on our happiness is only temporary and we tend to rebound to our baseline level. Some people have a higher baseline happiness level than others, and that can be attributed in part to genetics, but it's also largely influenced by how you think.[1] So while the remainder of this article will help boost your happiness, only improving your attitude towards life will increase your happiness permanently. Here are some excellent starting points for doing that:

  2. Follow your gut. In one study, two groups of people were asked to pick out a poster to take home. One group was asked to analyze their decision carefully, weighing the pros and cons, and the other group was told to listen to their gut. Two weeks later, the group that followed their gut was happier with their posters than the group that analyzed their decisions.[2] Now, some of our decisions are more crucial than picking out posters, but by the time you're poring over your choice, the options you're weighing are probably very similar, and the difference will only temporarily affect your happiness. So next time you have a decision to make, and you're down to two or three options, just pick the one that feels right, and go with it.

  3. Make enough money to meet your basic needs: food, shelter, and clothing. In the US, that magic number is $40,000 a year. Any money you make beyond that will have negligible effects on your happiness. Remember the lottery winners mentioned earlier? Oodles of money didn't make them any happier, and it won't make you any happier. Once you make enough money to support your basic needs, your happiness is not significantly affected by how much money you make, but by your level of optimism.[3]
    • Your comfort may increase with your salary, but comfort isn't what makes people happy. It makes people bored. That's why it's important to push beyond your comfort zone to fuel your growth as a person.
    • Don't assume you're the exception, as in "Sure they didn't use their lottery money wisely, but if I won it, I'm spend it differently, and it'd definitely make me happier." Part of the reason many people are unhappy is because they don't think research-based advice about happiness applies to them, and they continue chasing more money and achievement and material goods in vain.[4]

  4. Stay close to friends and family. We live in a mobile society, where people follow jobs around the country and sometimes around the world. We do this because we think increases in salary will make us happier, but the fact is that our relationships with our friends and family have a far greater impact on our happiness than our jobs do. So next time you think about relocating, consider that you'd need a salary increase of over $100,000 USD to compensate for the loss of happiness you'd have from moving away from your friends and family.[5] But if your relationships with your family and friends are unhealthy or nonexistent, and you are bent on moving, choose a location where you'll be making about the same amount of money as everyone else; according to research, people feel more financially secure (and happier) when they're on similar financial footing as the people around them, regardless of what that footing is.[6]
  5. Stop expecting your job to make you happy. Many people expect the right job or the right career to dramatically change their level of happiness, but happiness research makes it clear that your level of optimism and the quality of your relationships eclipse the satisfaction you gain from your job.[7] If you have a positive outlook, you'll make the best of any job, and if you have good relationships with people, you won't depend on your job to give your life a greater sense of meaning. You'll find it in your interactions with the people you care about. Now that doesn't mean you shouldn't aspire towards a job that'll make you happier; it means you should understand that the capacity of your job to make you happy is quite small in comparison to you outlook on life and your relationships with people.
  6. Engage in making the little moments special: Research indicates that when you smile, whether you feel happy or not, your mood will be elevated. When we smile at others, we pass on our mood to to the people we smile at. With this in mind, it is important to consider the implications for happiness that the very act of smiling at another in passing has on not only our psyche, but that of the larger good. More importantly, when we smile at another, it shouldn't be with the expectation of having a smile in return. Sometimes the people we are smiling at who don't return the gesture may be the ones who need the smile the most. Just the act of doing something positive -- sharing a smile -- is enough to send our endorphins in the right direction, regardless of the response.
  7. Keep yourself preoccupied with healthy people, healthy places, and healthy activities: Avoid going to locations where negatives commonly occur, such as bars or casinos. Avoid people who encourage you to make unhealthy choices, such as engaging in cruel gossip or starting unhealthy habits such as smoking. Avoid activities such as drinking, smoking, swearing, and other reckless behavior. Some healthy choices to consider include getting invoved in some type of spiritual practice, whether it be with a local Church or through reading a positive self-help book or by simply sitting down and dedicating ten minutes to meditation every night before bed. Studies indicate that involvement with spirituality increases the level of happiness for the individuals in question. Healthy environments include the local gym, the library and book stores, museums and cultural places, and the local church. Making good decisions for oneself has significant implications for the eventual outcome of happiness.
  8. Consider an anti-depressant: If you are seriously ill and have been thinking about taking your own life or have been seriously depressed for some time, an anti-depressant might be beneficial in returning your life to a healthy balance. Anti-depressants could also be taken in conjunction with herbal medicines, although medical advice should be sought in these cases. Saint John's Wort is a herbal medicine that might help alleviate some symptoms, but should be used cautiously, due to potential adverse impacts. B-100 vitamins are another natural way to elevate the mood, and should be considered as a daily supplement for better overall health.
  9. See the best in others: When we strive to look at the best in others, we end up seeing the best in ourselves. Shortcomings in others can be met with compassion and understanding, which removes any resentment or disdain that might otherwise surface. When we look at others with a healthy sense of acceptance, love, and compassion, we find that our moods naturally elevate to a higher level of happiness. Author of "Wealth" Kirby Thibeault suggests that we see what we feel and think. When we see the beauty in all others, the beauty within ourselves becomes more apparent.


  • Just because something seems to make other people happy doesn't mean that it really does. People are very good at pretending they're happy, especially when they've invested so much into the things that are supposed to make them happy; it's hard to admit that you've been placing all your eggs in the wrong basket.
  • Sport. It makes you healthy and boosts your self-esteem. It also gives you the endorphins (hormones of happiness)
  • Hobby. Have a hobby. This could be from playing a guitar to collecting stamps.
  • Self-actualization, goal, meaning. Have goals in life, evolve as a personality, have a purpose.

-someone please edit this properly; it could be one of the main points- Note: I don't remember the exact reference, but giving and sharing with others generally makes one happier than accumulating things for oneself.


  • Happy people aren't happy all the time. Everyone has times when they feel sad, frustrated, guilty, angry and so on. Happy people are just better at bouncing back to a state of contentedness. We may all feel negative at some moment in our lives, but try to bounce back and live in the moment, and be content with everything you do.
  • Sometimes unhappiness can be caused by malnutrition or sickness. Make sure you're getting all the essential vitamins and minerals and eating well.

Related wikiHows

Sources and Citations


  2. The Social Animal by Elliot Aronson






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