Thursday, October 7, 2010

Have You Got A Weston A. Price Smile? | Food Renegade

Check out the link below to see a Weston A. Price Smile. The boy in the picture is enjoying his birthright of perfect teeth and health. Read the article to find out why he is so lucky and what we are doing to our children to rob them of their birthrights.

Have You Got A Weston A. Price Smile? | Food Renegade

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Wikipedia's Anti-Natural Health Slant

I had no idea how slanted Wikipedia was toward alternative health topics. They are about as unbiased as they come. Read this article and bookmark, use and contribute to the alternative site, please.

Wikipedia’s Anti-Natural Health Slant

Monday, September 6, 2010

Market Gardening Class

UF/IFAS - Sarasota County Extension


Course Title: Market Gardening

Instructor: Robert Kluson, Ph.D., Ag/Natural Resources Extension Agent

Course Description: Market gardening is the commercial production of vegetables, fruits, flowers, and other plants, on a scale larger than a home garden, yet small enough

that many of the principles of gardening can be applied, and is often oriented toward local markets, such as farmers markets. This series of 8 classes will cover different

aspects of the scope, startup and operation of a market garden business.

Class structure:

2.0 hours length

First 0.5 hour = discussion of previous topic

Remaining 1.5 hour = new topic presentation

Class Schedule:

September 22nd (6-8 pm) - Introduction

September 29th (6-8 pm) - Holistic Management

October 6th (6-8 pm) - Business Planning and Marketing

October 13th (6-8 pm) – Production Systems and Planning

October 20th (6-8 pm) - Equipment and Tools; Post-harvest handling

October 27th (6-8 pm) - Food Safety; Regulations

November 3rd (6-8 pm) – Farmers’ Markets

November 17th (6-8 pm) – Financing; Class reports

TBD – Local Market Gardener Onsite Visit


Colonial Oaks Park, 5300 Colonial Oaks Blvd, Sarasota, FL 34232-6844


Online at education calendar on Sarasota Co Extension

website at


$15 (for entire series) – Checks payable to AG/NR Extension Advisory Committee at 1st class. Cash or check only.

Participant Requirements:

Read recommended online resources

Attend classes

Participate in discussions

Share gardening experience

Share readings from online resources

Peruse, if possible, recommended book resources

Participate in class projects at final class, i.e., give an executive summary of your sustainable business plan

Course Online Resources (Required Reading):

Building A Sustainable Business: A Guide to Developing a Business Plan for Farms and Rural Businesses

Farmers Markets

Market Gardening: A Start Up Guide

Sustainable Practices for Vegetable Production in the South (NC State)

UF/IFAS/FAMU Small Farm & Alternative Enterprise Program

Book Resources (Available as Loan Library):

Aubrey, S.B. 2010. The Profitable Hobby Farm: How to Build a Sustainable Local Food Business.

Byczynski, L. 2006. Market Farming Success.

Coleman, E. 1988. The New Organic Grower: A Master's Manual of Tools and Techniques for the Home and Market Gardener.

Gibson, E. 1994. Sell What You Sow: The Grower's Guide to Successful Produce Marketing

Hamilton, N. 1999. The Legal Guide For Direct Farm Marketing.

Ikerd, J. 2008. Small Farms are Real Farms: Sustaining People through Agriculture

Jeavons, J. 2006. How to grow more vegetables Than You Ever Thought Possible on Less Land Than You Can Imagine.

Lee, A. 1993. Backyard market gardening : the entrepreneur's guide to selling what you grow.

Macher, R. 1999. Making Your Small Farm Profitable.

Savory, A. Holistic Management.

Seymour, J. 1978. The Self-Sufficient Gardener.

Stephens, J., 1999. Vegetable Gardening in Florida.

Tasch. W. 2008. Slow Money: Investing As If Food, Farms and Fertility Mattered.

Whatley, B.T. 1987. Handbook On How To Make $100,000 Farming 25 Acres.

Other Online Resources:

City Farmer News


Farmers Market Coalition

Florida Association of Community Farmers Markets

Growing for Market

Hobby Farms

Kitchen Gardeners International

The New Farm

Your Backyard Farmer

The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) is an Equal Opportunity Institution authorized to provide research, educational information,

and other services only to individuals and institutions that function without discrimination with respect to race, creed, color, religion, age, disability,

sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, political opinions, or affiliations. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Cooperative Extension

Service, University of Florida, IFAS, Florida A&M University Cooperative Extension Program, and Boards of County Commissioners Cooperating.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Easy Peasy Mustard and Cream Steak Sauce

Whoa! I shudder when I think of how good this tasted on our steak last night. I must give my compliments to America's Test Kitchen for the recipe, although I modified it a bit to serve my WAPF principles.

To start, whenever I cook a grass fed steak, I rub on the seasonings and let it sit for about 30 minutes to come to room temperature. When the pan is ready and hot, I BUTTER THE STEAK, not the pan. That way I can get a good sear on the steak without burning my butter. And we all know butter is better, right?

After removing the steak I let it rest for 10 minutes or so before cutting into it. This is the time to make the Mustard Cream Sauce. You will need

1 shallot - minced - about 2 tablespoons (I did not have a shallot so I used a couple of green onions)
1 1/2 Tablespoons dry white wine
1/4 Cup chicken broth
3 Tablespoons heavy cream
1 1/2 Tablespoons whole grain Dijon mustard (I used plain Dijon)

You want about 1 T fat from the steak in the skillet.
On low heat, add the shallot and cook stirring frequently until it begins to brown - about 2-3- minutes.
Add the wine and increase the heat to medium high, simmer rapidly, scraping up the browned bits on the pan bottom until the liquid is reduced to a glaze, about 30 seconds.
Add broth and simmer until reduced to 2 tablespoons, about 3 minutes.
Stir in the mustard and remove from heat.
Add the cream and season to taste with Celtic Sea Salt and pepper.

I used some cream that was starting to sour and it was perfect. But, I am looking forward to making it with fresh cream, too. I don't think I can do the wrong thing with this winner.


Sunday, August 15, 2010

A holistic healing cat story

My husband Preston and I are quite fond of cats and share our home with 7 of the little darlings.

It is my practice to do a head count every morning upon waking, every evening before bed and even when I come home after being out for several hours. Last Wednesday (10 days ago), I realized around 4:00 in the afternoon that I had not done my morning head count and had not seen Casey (one of the twins!) all day. I looked around the house and called, but no Casey. I went outside and called (we have a fenced, cat-friendly yard), but no Casey. When I came back into the house and there he was looking all sleepy. I picked him up to cuddle him (which he loves) and he cried. Then I realized he wasn't sleepy but feeling poorly.

I examined him to find a bump below his belly in the groin area. It was very large and tender and he would not let me feel around it. I went into action making our bedroom a "sick-room" and brought in a litter box, food and water and put him on our bed. He stayed there for the night, getting worse and worse.

The next day I was able to see the bump/lump better. It was huge! I thought I could see a tiny hole - like from a bee sting. I was looking for two holes from a pair of fangs as the little sweetie has brought us a black snake the previous week - still squirming and very much alive.

So, I thought the lump needed to be aspirated and I called a nearby Western medicine vet and took him in. It is my practice to use Western vets for diagnosis and then bring them home for holistic treatments. In this case, I thought intervention was called for.

The Vet examined him (and ignored my comment about a bee sting hole) and stuck in a needle to aspirate. But nothing came out. Well, a little did, enough for him to put on a slide to look at under a microscope. He came back all solemn telling me it was not pus but very large white cells that he could not identify. I remained calm.

He said we needed to test him for Feline Leukemia/Aids since I did not vaccinate and the lump could be from one of those "death sentence" diseases. And, he recommend exploratory surgery. It would be a big deal to cut that lump out and it could be cancer. I remained calm.

He told me my other cats were at risk for
FeLeuk and Aids and I should have them all tested and vaccinated. NOT! I remained calm.

I thanked him and paid him my $40.00 and took my baby (who was a total champ throughout the whole process, never uttering a sound) to the car. Before I left the parking lot I called a Homeopathic vet I use that lives near
Ocala and left a message.

An hour later Dr.
Wessner (352-245-2025) called me back and I gave him Casey's recent history. He told me to give him two homeopathic remedies (that I had on hand), some plant-based enzymes to help his body absorb the material in the lump and he was sending me another remedy that I did not have.

Within 15 minutes of giving him the two remedies, Casey rolled over on his back - his favorite position and one I had not seen him in for 2 days. With that, I took the opportunity
to place a hot water bottle on the lump. He remained on his back, but repositioned himself to clamp his leg over the bottle. Look at that picture! There is nothing more adorable than a trusting animal.

I kept up the hot water bottle and about 4 days into this the lump started draining. He licked it all the time. When he wasn't licking I was applying the bottle (which causes the material to liquefy and drain). He was the best patient.

We went on this path for days...a week really. I gave him the remedies, plus the enzymes, plus some powdered Vitamin C. At its' zenith the lump was the size of a half a plum; huge for a 14 pound cat. He did have a set back where I thought he felt worse, but the next day he rebounded and started getting happier and happier and becoming more animated. Last night he actually gave Preston his "high cry"... his cry asking to be put up high on a set of bookshelves - one of his favorite places. I was worried about the jump down so he remained four on the floor for the time being.

He is still recovering. The lump is almost gone. He prefers our bed (his sick bed) for deep resting, but purrs easily and is moving around a lot. Has never lost his appetite completely but has lost some weight.

The upshot of this story? Imagine where I would be today if I had followed the first vets advise? My sweetest of cats would be recovering from surgery, our wallet would be quivering and I would never forgive myself for putting him through those traumas.

So, please don't let a vet (or any doctor) scare you into the action they advise without seeking other consultations...the first being your gut. That is why I remained calm...I knew he was not that sick! I also know what I do to keep him healthy (like not giving him vaccines). I also knew I had Dr. Wessner in my back pocket!

It took a little more work and a lot of trust by Casey, but I expect him to be giving us his "high-cry" for many years to come!

Follow up

It is now 2 weeks since I took Casey to the Western vet and then called Dr. Wessner, my holistic vet.

The swelling was completely gone after about 11 days from the first dose of homeopathics recommended by Dr. Wessner. What remains now is a little area bare of hair (from his licking) and two perfect little scabs.

Looks like a snake got him. Again, I am so glad I decided to follow a holistic path instead of the horrors of surgery and more.

Casey is feeling 100% himself. I saw him prancing in the yard yesterday and he has given us his "high cry" everyday. WHEW!

Feel free to call Dr. Wessner (352-245-2025) and share his number with your friends and family. Tell him Casey (and Cynthia) sent you.


Thursday, August 12, 2010

Easy and oh, so good coconut flour bread

I want to thank Jenny of Nourished Kitchen (one of my favorite blogs) for posting this very easy recipe. I love coconut bread, especially slathered with a ton of butter (as if it isn't full of enough fat already). A slice of this bread with raw, grass fed butter and I am good to go for hours and hours with high energy and mental focus. Try it sometime. Ask me where to find the best coconut flour.

Jenny writes:

About thirty-five to forty percent of Nourished Kitchen readers purposefully avoid gluten or grains entirely either because of a diagnosis of celiac disease or out of dietary preference. So, this post is for you – a beautiful coconut flour bread for all those grain-free readers, or just any of you looking to enrich your diets with wholesome fats and high quality protein.

Coconut flour is remarkably versatile, and I like to use it in otherwise starchy recipes where its spongy, dense and moist texture really shines. It soaks up liquid readily and just a little bit of coconut flour goes a long, long way. In most recipes, coconut flour is paired with several eggs and a good amount of fat, both of which contribute valuable vitamins and a favorable fatty acid ratio to the dish you’re making – in this case: coconut flour bread. By comparison to grain-based flours, coconut flour is richer in dietary fiber, protein and fat which makes it a particularly helpful flour for those that must be mindful of their macronutrient intake levels (which is probably all of us.)

Coconut Flour Bread

Composed of just five simple ingredients, this grain-free bread is remarkably satisfying. Though the bread is made from coconut flour, its flavor is only slightly reminiscent of coconut and it offers a beautiful dense crumb similar to coffee cake but without the cloying sweetness. While you could undoubtedly use this coconut flour bread to prepare sandwiches, I think its dense crumb coupled with its very faint coconut flavor would make it the ideal bread for a nutrient-dense and protein-rich French toast.

Coconut Flour Bread: Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1/2 cup ghee (see sources), plus extra for greasing the pan
  • 6 eggs
  • up to two tablespoons honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon unrefined sea salt

Coconut Flour Bread: Equipment

  • stand mixer, food processor or mixing bowl and whisk
  • loaf pan

Coconut Flour Bread: Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Combine coconut flour, ghee, eggs, honey and 1/2 teaspoon unrefined sea salt together.
  3. Mix all the ingredients together until they form a smooth paste with no clumps.
  4. Grease a loaf pan.
  5. Spoon the mixture into the loaf pan, and bake in an oven preheated to 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 40 minutes.

YIELD: 1 loaf

TIME: about 5 minutes (preparation), 40 minutes (baking)

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

A Better Alternative to Toothpaste

Thank you, Sarah Pope, Chapter Leader of the Tampa Bay Weston A. Price Foundation for sharing this with me.

It's a rather well known fact that regular toothpaste from the store contains a variety of dangerous ingredients. After all, the toothpaste labels themselves say "Poison"!

The most well known of toxic toothpaste ingredients is sodium flouride. Sodium flouride is so toxic that ingesting more than a pea size of toothpaste requires an emergency call to Poison Control. Ingestion of too much sodium flouride can cause a variety of symptoms within minutes including abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, headache, tremors, muscle spasms, seizures, and in severe cases, multi-organ failure.

I don't know about you, but I don't feel at all comfortable brushing my teeth with poison. Even if you don't swallow the toothpaste, the chemicals in it easily get into the blood via the very thin gum tissue. If you don't believe that chemicals can get into your blood via simple contact with gum tissue, then try putting a tiny pinch of chewing tobacco between your bottom lip and your gums. I guarantee you will be dizzy, nauseated and ready to vomit in about 30 seconds (unless you happen to be a professional baseball player who chews tobacco regularly!)

Another really bad chemical in many conventional toothpastes is triclosan. Triclosan is an anti-bacterial chemical that is increasingly linked to hormone disruption among other things. I blogged about the dangers of this chemical in a blog post a couple months back titled "Danger Lurks in Your Antibacterial Soap".

You should NEVER put chemicals in your mouth that you don't want in your blood. You don't need to swallow to be damaged by them.

Even Healthfood Store Toothpastes Not a Good Idea

What is less well known is that even toothpaste from the healthfood store should be avoided. While the ingredients may not be as toxic, the ingredients may hinder overall tooth and gum health.

For example, nearly all nontoxic toothpastes contain glycerin. Glycerin is a sticky, sweet tasting, clear, thick liquid that is a byproduct of the soap making process. When you brush your teeth with toothpaste containing this chemical, some of the glycerin stays on your teeth due to its extreme stickiness. This impedes remineralization of your teeth as you sleep and can lead to cavities in the long term.

In addition, be aware that a number of healthfood store toothpastes shockingly contain sodium flouride! There is simply no substitute for reading labels either for the food you buy or the cosmetics you use!

What to Use to Brush Your Teeth?

I have not used either conventional or healthfood store toothpaste for a number of years. I first got started using a simple, homemade mixture of baking soda and sea salt (3:1) after attending a fantastic, eye opening lecture by Dr. Ray Behm DDS back in 2005. He has a website that details how to make your own tooth powder at home and the benefits of doing so at his website Save Your Teeth.

If making your own tooth powder is not your thing or you would rather buy one that is juiced up with some wonderful herbs that benefit tooth and gum health, then I would suggest taking a look at a product called Good-Gums. I tried this product a few months back at the suggestion of a friend who knows the owner of the company and I have been delighted with it.

Good-Gums contains baking soda and sea salt, the primary ingredients of tooth powder dentifrice as recommended by Dr. Behm. It also contains beneficial soothing and antiseptic herbs such as myrrh, tea tree, peppermint, cinnamon, and cranberry. In addition, Good-Gums contains a whole food form of vitamin C. Vitamin C is known to be critical to gum health and the avoidance of periodontal disease.

*Let me know when you are ready to try it. I always have extra on hand!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Homemade Sunscreen

There has been a lot of discussion lately about the wisdom of using sunscreen. Does it causes more skin cancer than it prevents? Don't we need the Vitamin D from the sun to PREVENT cancer?

My approach to the sun is to get tan slowly...15-20 minutes for the first exposure and then add 5-10 minutes each time after. I get nice and brown and don't have to worry about frying my skin. I am getting Vitamin D while NOT loading my system with sunscreen toxins.

However, that said, I have found that a change to a diet high in Omega 3 fatty acids seems to protect the skin from burning. I know of several folks that no longer get sun burned after changing their diet to one rich in traditional fats like grass fed butter, lard from pastured pigs and coconut oil.

Melissa Hull in Tampa shared here homemade recipe for sunscreen on that WAPF Yahoo message board. Here it is to share:

48 g liquid oil (can use olive, sweet almond, etc)
52 g coconut oil
20 g emulsifying wax (to mix water and oil)
10 g stearic acid (to thicken)

380 g water
10 g vegetable glycerine
35 g zinc oxide

Heat first 4 ingredients in a double boiler until incorporated. Then, with a stick blender, mix oil mixture into water until creamy and thickened. Add glycerine and zinc with blender. You can also add essential oils of your choice for fragrance (about 5 g for this recipe). had all the supplies, or you can look for a local soap supply store. is one store in St Pete.

If you have a favorite lotion, just use that and add 25% zinc oxide to the bottle- it's that easy! ( for an 8oz bottle, that would be 2 oz zinc oxide)

Friday, May 21, 2010

My Home Medicine Cabinet – What I Use to Remedy Ailments

Well, here I go again sharing instead of writing.  I love this article and can vouch for many of the remedies listed as being safe and effective.  Enjoy it, print it, source the items, file it, share it.  And let me know if I can help you find anything.

Click here to read all about it...
Home Remedies

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

What Veg*ns Can Learn from Traditional Foods

I loved this post from the Nourished Kitchen blog. If you are a vegetarian, please read it. If you know a vegetarian, please pass it on.

Click below to read all about it.

What Veg*ns Can Learn from Traditional Foods

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Kefir Grains | How To Make Homemade Kefir From Kefir Grains

Place them in a glass jar (pt, quart, 1/2 half gallon).
Fill with milk.
Place a paper towel or thin cloth over the opening and secure with a rubber band (or the ring of the jar lid).
The purpose is to let the milk and grains breathe and give off the gas that forms during the culturing process while keeping little critters out.
If you can, give it a little twist or two once in a while. The grains like the gentle action.
After 12 hours put a lid on the jar and give it a shake good enough to distribute the cream - not violent, or you can stir it with a plastic spoon.
Take the grains out and put them in another jar to start over.

After your first couple of days you can start letting it culture up to 24 hours. I recommend 12 to start for 2 reasons: 1) so you can get used to the sour taste and 2) so your gut can get used to all the beneficial bacterial.

If you get bloated or gassy they just drink less the next time until you can built up to the amount you want.

One rule of dealing with grains is to not use metal.

This site has more info...

Kefir Grains | How To Make Homemade Kefir From Kefir Grains

Monday, March 15, 2010

Pemmican - what is that?

Ever since I had my first bite of Pemmican I have been in love. Now, I know Nourishing Traditions has a recipe, but I have always bought mine from US Wellness Meets.

The other day I found this great PDF on how to make it. Read below to also learn what it is and how to store it. It is perfect for putting in those boxes just in case a hurricane is coming our way.


Wednesday, March 3, 2010

How to make perfect yogurt

Here I go again, stealing from others. Hope they find it flattering!

I have gotten so many comments on this post from Nourishing Kitchen that I wanted to post it here for all to see and share. Thanks so much to NK for this great post.

Ten tips for making perfect homemade yogurt.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Can Cold Water Clean Dishes?

Can Cold Water Clean Dishes?
This is for all the germ conscious folks
that worry about using cold water to clean.

John went to visit his 90 year old grandfather
in a very secluded, rural area of Saskatchewan

After spending a great evening chatting the night away,

the next morning John's grandfather prepared

breakfast of bacon, eggs and toast.

However, John noticed a film like substance on his plate,

and questioned his grandfather asking,

'Are these plates clean?'

His grandfather replied,

'They're as clean as cold water can get em.

Just you go ahead and finish your meal, Sonny!'

For lunch the old man made hamburgers.

Again, John was concerned about the plates,

as his appeared to have tiny specks around

the edge that looked like dried egg and asked,

'Are you sure these plates are clean?'

Without looking up the old man said,

'I told you before, Sonny, those dishes are as

clean as cold water can get them. Now don't you

fret, I don't want to hear another word about it!'

Later that afternoon, John was on his way to a nearby town

and as he was leaving, his grandfather's dog

started to growl, and wouldn't let him pass.

John yelled and said,
'Grandfather, your dog won't let me get to my car'.

Without diverting his attention from the football game

he was watching on TV, the old man shouted.....

'Coldwater, go lay down now, ya hear me!'

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Get Liberated with the Liberation Diet

Co-author of the Liberation Diet, Kevin Brown will be in Sarasota for one night speaking about his popular book and how to GET LIBERATED from disease and those pesky extra pounds.

Date: Thursday, February 11, 2010 7:00 PM
When: 7:00 P.M.
Where: Unitarian Universalist Church - 3975 Fruitville Road, Sarasota, FL 34232
Map: Click Here

From the Liberation Diet website:

"We've been programmed by the food, medical and pharmaceutical industries with misinformation that is destroying our health in America. Authors Brown and Presley navigate the minefield of misconceptions surrounding low–fat high-carb diets, soy foods, and pharmaceutical medications. They challenge common myths about cholesterol, water consumption, and exercise -- and their findings will surprise you.

Get ‘liberated’! Follow The Liberation Diet and get thin and healthy for life!"

Come hear Kevin tell us how.

Ticket information: There is a limited amount of space at this venue, and advance ticketing is strongly suggested. Tickets ordered on or before February 8th are $10.00; after February 8th, $15.00.

You may purchase tickets securely below by using your credit card or PayPal account. If you do not have a PayPal account use the "continue" button on the bottom left after you click below.

Purchase Tickets