$$$$$$$?

It’s fascinating to observe the goings on in the world. And when you stop to take notice that what’s reported in the media is rather different from what’s happening it becomes almost amusing. It’s necessary and wise to look between the lines, whether they’e written or spoken. All the talk about lack, and yet open your eyes wide and you see that movie land has millions to spend on make-believe, developers keep developing their big buildings (some quite ugly) whether they are needed or not, many perfectly sturdy and stunning buildings are torn down to make way for bigger and supposedly better structures, high-priced designer stores have numerous regular customers, jewelry stores continue to flourish, the Aston Martin always has its buyers, inexpensive and expensive restaurants are filled daily with eager eaters. Life goes on. We live in a world where the very poor, the not so poor/not so rich, and the very rich exist together. It’s a nice feeling to stop once in awhile to look around and see the wonder of it all. The world’s offerings are endless. Take a look at all the people – every single person on this earth existing in a different way – no life is ever the same. People come and people go; the world changes, and yet it doesn’t. And the earth continues to accommodate it all. And to stay in the moment is to live in peace.

“Fortify yourself with contentment,
for this is an impregnable fortress.” – Epictetus

“Be content with what you have,
rejoice in the way things are.
When you realize there is nothing lacking,
the whole world belongs to you.” – Lao Tzu

“Who is rich? He who rejoices in his portion.” – The Talmud

boston legal, the show

Boston Legal with its cast of outrageous, hilarious characters is a show I’m going to miss a lot once it’s off the air. The show slips in nuggets of wisdom from one-line sentences, or from trial summations, frequently providing food for thought. The writers of the show are brilliant, the producer and writer, David E. Kelley, is brilliant, and the actors are perfectly cast. Oh, yes, I like the show. Please tell me that there won’t be another dreadful dumb reality show replacing it.

Speaking of reality shows, an old episode had Catherine (Betty White) beautifully playing a mentally-disturbed nuisance. She was fired and returns of her own accord. She manages to set things up so that without her business as usual is difficult until Shirley returns. She’s scheming all the time to stay. Finally something she says makes sense to one of the lawyers – Catherine is bored and wants quality tv for those over 50. They go to trial to sue some tv networks for the dumb shows that cater to a certain age. Catherine’s lawyer explains to judge and jury that the dumb reality shows are necessary because the generations brought up techie-style can’t simply sit and enjoy a show; they have other things in hand, e.g., iPod, laptop, small DVD allowing them to watch a movie while viewing a tv program, etc. This being the case some networks see no reason to put quality first. Unfair. They won – ha ha – it was funny. Hmm! But is it true?

That was on a lighter side. Some of Boston Legal’s shows get to the nitty gritty of politics and all that that word encompasses, heavy issues of daily life, and everything in between.

Don’t go www.boston-legal.org

a big pancake and more

Often I would prepare and bake what’s called a big pancake. I really liked the recipe. Then I moved and the recipe was lost. The once-upon-a-time big pancake had few ingredients; still it seemed to scream “I’m delicious. I’m delicious.” as it was taken out of the oven. It was. And I remember the smiles greeting it when it was brought to the table. But I don’t remember recipes, so big pancake went the way of the wind.

Recently another attempt with a big pancake recipe failed. So I searched for recipes on the web. All of them are just a wee different, and that wee difference changes the taste and the look. Today, however, I think I found it. Yes, yes, I feel this is the one. If you want a treat check out www.thekitchn.com and type Big Pancake.

Along the way of the search I discovered these delightful websites, some consisting of stories about chefs and the foods that bring them joy. Want to know the correct way to say pesto? Eugenia Bone knows. www.sautewednesday.com/eugeniabone.html

Want to finally know how to make a really tasty gravy? Mark Bittman knows.
www.howtocookeverything.tv

And then there’s James Beard; what’s not to like?
www.jamesbeard.org

And when you’re out browsing don’t forget Laurie Colwin’s book, MORE HOME COOKING. Reading her essays on food allows you to go quietly into another world. Imagine you’re walking around, listening to her talk of the how-to of food, while she’s shopping for this ingredient and that ingredient. Some of your favorite recipes could possibly be in one of her books. Laurie Colwin was a writer for Gourmet magazine. Her books seem more and more appreciated as time passes.

It’s time for dinner. Have a delicious meal, and a beautiful evening.

thanksgiving 2008

Did you somehow filter the outside world long enough to think of all the reasons to be thankful on this Thanksgiving 2008? Sometimes it’s tough, esp. when we see photos of people in California losing all the stuff they hold dear, or the people in places such as Mumbai (formerly Bombay) losing their lives in the blink of an eye.

Because we live at a time when tragedies are all too frequent, and easily come alive in our homes at the click of a button, we can at least learn from them so that they help us understand all the more that each day is a gift to be lived as masterfully as we can until it’s time for us to move on to our next journey. I think the next journey is also a gift, and the beauty of that gift depends on how we’re handling the one we have now.

Our amazing world presents us with many ways to grow in body, mind and spirit. This morning on aol I read Michael J. Fox’s words about living with Parkinson’s disease in an interview he gave in People Magazine. He said: “You either get Zen with this [stuff] or you lose your mind. Having the disease is part of an amazing life. And not an ‘otherwise’ amazing life.” He clarifies, “It’s part of what makes my life amazing.”

I find that lately the word “amazing” is used frequently. It’s a wonderful word.

www.holidays.net/thanksgiving/
www.michaeljfox.org

amazing, adj. 1. causing wonder and amazement; possessing uniquely wonderful qualities.
www.wiktionary.org/wiki/amazing

allowing the natural

When we start to trust it it’s easy to see that nature provides beautifully for us according to the way it most likely was meant to.

For instance, apple cider vinegar’s versatility appears to be endless. I purchased Dr. Earl Mindell’s book, AMAZING APPLIE CIDER VINEGAR, a few years ago, and am always surprised at the ease in using vinegar for all sorts of, shall we say, things. Dandruff? This from Earl Mindell: “Simply pour full-strength vinegar on your head and work it into the roots of the hair, then wrap your head with a towel; let the treatment work for a full hour before washing your hair. Repeat the procedure as many times as necessary to do away with dandruff and itchy scalp for good.” Warts, calluses? Apply apple cider vinegar on a cloth and adhere to skin, or apply on a band aid mornings and evenings until the area is wart or callus free. Have patience; it works. Now people in the know who write about acv say taking 1 tablespoon in a glass of water 30 minutes before meals, among other things, aids in digestion.

In past years when a recipe called for fresh ginger and I was new to buying it, I couldn’t think how else to use the rest of it. Now I know that when it’s grated it can be added to just about anything. For tea slice a 1-inch piece and steep it for 10-15 minutes – drink hot or cold. Good to know because ginger’s benefits are powerful. I once took a cooking course in Manhattan taught by Virginia Lee. She said that ginger stays fresh when kept in a jar of sherry. She and Craig Claiborne wrote a cookbook worth having.

Turmeric has finally found its place in the American spotlight, and recently I read on aol’s news page, (from David Servan-Schreiber’s book as reviewed in Prevention Magazine), that turmeric is “the most powerful anti-inflammatory today.” Good to know. Not used to this spice? Well, it takes a bit of time sometimes for one’s taste buds to savor the new; continue to use and eventually you’ll think, hmm, this dish needs more turmeric.

On that same site I read that “the active compounds in garlic are released when you crush the clove, and they’re much more easily absorbed when they’re combined with a small amount of oil.”

Henry is someone I met in Vilcabamba, Ecuador. He had been a merchant marine for many years, and in his 50s decided to study Chinese medicine and acupuncture in Hawaii. He was very popular in Vilcabamba. There were evenings when a group of us sat outside the cafe facing the plaza listening to Henry, and gathering information. I remember he said that to know whether you have parasites spit into a glass of water – if spit sinks you have them. Parasites? There are many helpful books on detoxifying. Something we all should do – every year it gets easier and easier to rid toxins from our bodies. Yes, it does.

Peroxide tries to compete with apple cider vinegar; its uses are many. It’s an excellent mouth wash, toothbrushes can be soaked in a cup of peroxide to kill germs, it can rid kitchen counters and wooden cutting boards of bacteria. Adding a little in water when watering plants keeps them healthy. Add a cup of peroxide instead of bleach to a load of whites in washing machine, spray on mirrors to clean them. I bought a spray cap for the peroxide bottle and spray just about everything in sight. So watch out when visiting my place. Just kidding.

Soon I’m going to bake chocolate chip cookies. And this time I’ll replace the white and brown sugar with Stevia. www.stevia.com Stevia has been used in Japan for 50 years. And in “Paraguay, Brazil, Argentina, and China it’s been used to sweeten food and tea for centuries. Stevia is hundreds of times sweeter than sugar, with virtually no calories, and 1 teaspoon of the liquid is equal to 1 cup of sugar.” August 2008 www.prevention.com

Should you want a list of natural physicians in your area, the website is: www.acam.org, the American College for Advancement in Medicine, or call 800 532 3688. And for allergy screening and treatment the website is: www.aaem.com the American Academy for Environmental Medicine, or call 316 684 5500.

And let’s not ever forget the tremendous power of our thinking in helping to keep us healthy.

“If I had to leave my children just one piece of advice, it would be to live in the moment.” – Nicholas Evans, Writer

indeed

Indeed the world is experiencing unimaginable suffering. But the world is experiencing a vast amount of good, also – all is not wrong with the world. Does experiencing the world one way or the other depend on us – our thoughts, and how we create in our lives? Over and over and over it has been said that it does. Now that’s a powerful thought.

******* ******* ******* ******* ******* ******* ********

“Words are the vibrations of nature,
therefore beautiful words create
beautiful nature, ugly words create ugly
nature, this is the root of the universe.” -Masaru Emoto

and what about –

A little bit of this, and a little bit of that can be a wonderful thing.

www.evanhandler.com

www.ted.com

www.ask-inc.com

www.isha.com

FISH to avoid? FISH for your health?
www.montereybayaquarium.org/cr/seafoodwatch.asp
from an article by Sarah Cimperman, www.drsarahcimperman.com

And from Ode Magazine:
www.greenschool.org

www.odemagazine.com/voluntourism

www.odemagazine.com/beatree

www.paulocoelhoblog.com

www.odemagazine.com/graphology

A book or two perhaps:
www.odemagazine.com/slowmoney

www.newsociety.com
“Weapons of Mass Instruction” by John Taylor Gatto (under “Upcoming Releases”)

www.rabbirami.blogspot.com
The Sacred Art of Lovingkindness by Rabbi Rami Shapiro – from Spirituality&Health magazine

Music maybe:
www.odemagazine.com/tonmaas
Riccardo Tesi, Presente Remoto

Just a click away. Enjoy!

needs

It would seem that this election year is not about having a black or white man, or having a woman in office or not. It’s strange that after all these years, and all that’s happened/happening in the world, this, among other things, is what’s written about and talked about. The world’s needs are not about skin color or gender, but about needing a person having extraordinary wisdom, along with a brilliant mind unencumbered by decisions of the past. The world of 2009 needs leaders of every country capable of implementing the changes needing to occur at this stage of the world’s development, and for the benefit of people everywhere. Imagine that!

Sometimes one could easily believe that our beautiful world exists for a handful of people. I feel that written on the soul of every creation is a right to evolve physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually. How is it that a few have wrestled power at the expense of many, and, in the process, have caused unimaginable chaos and suffering around the world? It boggles the mind!

May our next president be all that he can be for the good of himself, our country and the world.

a simple description of a friend

My friend in Thailand sent an email to me yesterday. I always like reading them because he talks at length about the adopted country he so much enjoys, and the new precious Thai family he married into. I’d say he’s along the same lines of Cloris Leachman – no ordinary person. How does one describe one who is no ordinary person? Well, I can describe the little things about him, and perhaps the little things about a person tell the biggest story. I’ve noticed that when he travels he never mentions the negative of any country. He writes at length about all the things he likes, – the people, food, beautiful sites, great, simple places to stay to learn the ways of the country, the how-to of getting around. He doesn’t seem to buy into anyone telling him what he can and can’t do, especially as it pertains to his personal life – that which he’s quite capable of deciding all by himself. He doesn’t listen to what can and can’t be done when a certain age is reached, or at any age for that matter. Categorizing and/or labeling life is not his thing. He lives, explores, enjoys being alive, and, if you were to meet him along the way, I bet you’d be glad you did.

He’s been around the world. If someone were to hand him a container of soap for additional sanitizing of hands, he’d give it right back to them. If he happened to be watching tv and a drug commercial appeared he’d casually mute it. Why allow that into one’s psyche? – I can hear him say. On second thought, that would be me saying that. He would simply mute it.

Yes, no ordinary person is he.

clover alessandra

I flew to Raleigh, NC a few days before beautiful, petite, determined Clover Alessandra was born on 18 September 2008 to Alicia and Michael. Her arrival created an amazing whirlwind of activity for which she was blissfully unaware, and left 28-month old brother Sebastian deeply concerned about the new addition to the family. We noticed quickly that this kind of acceptance isn’t easy for an only child. Time will change all that.

We all got colds, or was it allergies mimicking a cold. No matter, all of us, including Clover, coughed, sneezed and sniffled through the days ahead. Clover was a trooper; her first cold didn’t leave her too dishelved.

And we danced around Clover’s schedule as we shopped at Earth Fare, Fresh Market and Lowe’s. There was no restaurant dining this time around (except for a relaxing lunch at Winston’s Grille for Alicia and me the Monday before Clover’s arrival). Then Granny Yang from Virginia came with a large box of big, tasty Asian pears, and enough ingredients purchased at Kim’s Asian Market to prepare a Korean feast to celebrate Clover’s first day home. The dining table looked mighty happy that evening. Yang also prepared Korean style seaweed soup to keep Alicia and Clover in good health. That and Mother’s Milk tea, a bottle a day of O’Doule’s non-alcoholic beer, lots of water, and a bit of juice will assure a good supply of milk for tiny Clover Alessandra. And friends dropped by with lasagna, pasta with meatballs, and enchiladas for the rest of us.

Two big boxes arrived during the second week for Clover from Aunt Sumi and Uncle Toshi. What fun it was sitting around with mama Alicia holding Clover, and dad Michael holding the big box. He opened each individually-wrapped gift with care. And we all loved seeing your first four-leaf clover in the form of a little charm. Is that Clover’s first clover of a clover collection? Wisely, there was a gift for Sebastian – a yellow taxi. And in a flash Sebastian left to play. The second box was clothes 16-month old cousin Sophie outgrew.

Aunt Emi is knee-deep in her studies at Columbia, a work/study program, and an internship. Clover will see her when she comes up for air. ha ha

Baby Clover please know the entire family fell in love with you at first sight. And it seems it’ll only get better and better. And Sebastian, well, every so often, he shows a little interest in trying to figure out who you are, and how you were suddenly in his life. But we know that soon you and he will be friends, and that one day we’ll see you walking hand-in-hand with your cousin Sophie who spends a lot of time these days at playgrounds and sing-alongs in Brooklyn. And Sebastian will tease both of you unmercifully as his father once did with his sisters Sumi and Emi.

Dad Michael went to the World Beer Festival (tradition) on 4 October from 6pm to 10pm with Uncle Alex who drove from Atlanta, and four beer-loving friends. Dad Michael chose to be the designated driver so as to be in good shape the next day. Mama Alicia and I ate a late-night dinner while Sebastian slept. Clover was awake most of the time with head lifted, wide-eyed, and simply observing. Don’t want to miss a thing, eh? Your parents are looking a little tired these days, Clover.

The day before Clover was born a purchase was made at Dilly Dally of a Bebe Au Lait coverup for nursing in public, and at North Hills the tiniest and prettiest white dress for first photos was bought.

Clover, can you feel the love?

www.thefreshmarket.com
www.earthfare.com
www.lowesfoods.com
www.northhillsraleigh.com
www.allaboutbeer.com
www.winstonsgrille.com

Kim’s Asian Market, 6014 Duraleigh Road, Raleigh, NC ph.no: 919-788-7777
Bebe Au Lait coverup from Dilly Dally baby boutique, 6675 Falls of Neuse Road, Raleigh, NC

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