Summer 2016 Almanac

Welcome to the Summer Issue 2016 of the Almanac!

I won’t be able to write my usual longer intro since I am in the midst of packing up my house and moving! Hope you enjoy this issue of the Almanac Newsletter!

I had a great chat with EWG President Ken Cook, who is one of my heroes, so it was an honor to be featured in the EWG site. This past March, EWG shared the great news that General Mills has announced that it will begin labeling GMO ingredients in all their products! This is an incredible victory for consumers everywhere, and it wouldn’t have happened without you. You’ve raised your voices, and Congress and corporate giants are listening. They’re remembering our nation’s founding principle.
No, it’s not “E Pluribus Unum.”
It’s: The customer is always right.

Many of the foods we eat depend on pollination from honeybees. But bees are in trouble, and so are beekeepers — replacing lost hives is expensive. Some have come up with a new source of funding: Adopt A Beehive – Save a Beekeeper. Read the whole story here.

The stylish and cool lifestyle designer Jenni Kayne interviewed me for her Rip and Tan blog. In it, you’ll see photos of my house, which is now almost all packed up, including the large Peter Keene polka-dot piece hanging in my living room. Read it on Rip and Tan.

Have you been hearing about forest bathing recently? Forest bathing is a way to support well being through sensory immersion in forests. Go for a long walk in the woods!
Read all about it here: Forest bathing.

I’m passionate about reducing the amount of waste my household creates, so I’m always trying to come up with creative ways to repurpose or reuse the waste, whether it’s glass wine bottles or yogurt jars. I recently published a blog about Repurposing and I shared in it some of my own efforts and many great ideas from other sources.

I like Dr. Glen Barry, and the fascinating and inspirational essay he wrote titled “On Ecology and going back to the Land.” Please take a few minutes to read it.

Just like birds and many other animals who spread seeds wherever they go, so can we… by using Biodegradable coffee cups embedded with seeds that grow into trees when thrown away!

Watch the video at which shows this completely wonderful innovative idea about how to recycle plastic by allowing people, anywhere in the world to transform plastic waste into valuable things.

Do you know about the site What is Missing? Designed by artist Maya Lin as her last memorial to create an awareness about the present sixth mass extinction of species, connects this loss of species to habitat degradation and loss, and emphasizes that by preventing deforestation, we can both reduce carbon emissions and protect species and habitats. What is Missing? is a wake-up call and a call to action. It shows how we can help protect and restore nature, reimagine our relationship to the natural world, showcasing how we could live in ways that balance our needs with the needs of the planet.

In the works: Congress is considering a law that would standardize expiration dates, potentially saving tremendous amounts of food waste.

Do you want to laugh?! Before continuing onto the next sections of the Almanac, have a look at a blog I posted of some favorite eco & animal cartoons. They have all made me laugh and I hope they make you laugh too! Many of them are from the wonderful New Yorker magazine.

Have a wonderful next few months including a great summer!

All the best,

  • Book, Summer 2016 Almanac

    Who will plant a Tree? by Jerry Pallotta

    A squirrel buries an acorn. A dolphin pushes a coconut into an ocean current. A camel chewing a date spits out the seed.

  • Book, Summer 2016 Almanac

    Foraging and Feasting: A Field Guild and Wild Food Cookbook by Dina Falconi

    The book’s 50 beautiful, instructive botanical illustrations and over 100 enlightening master recipes offer an adventurous and satisfying way to eat locally and seasonally.

  • Book, Summer 2016 Almanac

    The Humane Economy by Wayne Pacelle

    A major new exploration of the economics of animal exploitation and a practical roadmap for how we can use the marketplace to promote the welfare of all living creatures…

  • Recipe, Summer 2016 Almanac

    Nopal Cactus (aka Prickly Pear Cactus)

    Nopales cactus is found along U.S. roadsides in the desert southwest and throughout its native Mexico.

  • Recipe, Summer 2016 Almanac

    Nasturtium Pesto

    This pesto can be spread in sandwiches, used as a sauce for pasta, a marinade on chicken or fish, or a fun addition to breakfast eggs.

  • Recipe, Summer 2016 Almanac

    Turmeric Milk

    This is easy to make, healthy, delicious and soothing and wonderful either for breakfast, or in the evening.

  • Gamechanger, Summer 2016 Almanac

    Winona LaDuke

    Winona LaDuke is an American activist, environmentalist, economist, and writer, known for her work on tribal land claims and preservation, as well as sustainable development.

  • Artist, Summer 2016 Almanac

    Nick Brandt

    Nick Brandt is an English photographer who photographs exclusively in the African continent, one of his goals being to record a last testament to the wild animals and places there before they are destroyed by the hands of man.

  • Eco Cinema, Summer 2016 Almanac

    Seeds of Time

    The documentary Seeds of Time, directed by Sandy McLeod, features agriculture pioneer Cary Fowler as he races against time to protect the future of our food.

  • Eco Cinema, Summer 2016 Almanac

    Terra – An Ode to Humanity

    TERRA is not a wildlife documentary. Nor is it a militant investigative documentary. TERRA is an essay, in the literary sense, on the human species and its relationship with other living beings.

  • Summer 2016 Almanac, Sustainable Design

    Mr. Trash Wheel

    The innovative Mr. Trash Wheel gets help from nature to clean up Baltimore’s polluted inner harbor. By combining old and new technology, the wheel harnesses the power of water and sunlight to collect litter and debris flowing down the Jones Falls River and into Baltimore’s harbor.