Starting the Year with Big Changes

We had planned to be in New Mexico by now, but Life had other ideas. We’re in California visiting Janaia’s family, soon to return to Nevada City. Our tenant is buying our house — a real blessing for all of us. Plus, Robin has just begun work with a Bay Area functional medicine practitioner (in addition to her physician) for lyme and auto-immune conditions.

FirTreeCover_500It’s been quiet on the newsletter front for two months as our personal lives took the foreground. Before leaving Corvallis in early December, we (primarily Robin) completed a dream I’ve held for 32 years: we produced a video of “The Little Fir and the Christmas Tree Angel,” a story I illustrated in the early 1980s. On our December journey to California, we shared it with a friend who created the music track (Stephen Hill, Music from the Hearts of Space), and the friend who narrated the story (filmmaker Dorothy Fadiman, Concentric Media). We visited many friends in a whirlwind blitz, with stops in Apple Valley (Oregon), Chico, Ukiah, Boonsville, Santa Rosa, San Rafael, Napa, Menlo Park, Sunnyvale and Nevada City/Grass Valley before settling down in Tracy.

We were totally maxed out. Then came an opening in the practice of a lyme-literate functional medicine physician. Robin pounced on it. (Functional Medicine offers a different paradigm. It sees the body as multiple interdependent systems and looks for root causes of imbalance. Treatment starts with supporting the body’s own systems through diet, supplements and lifestyle changes. By contrast, standard allopathic medicine generally matches symptoms with “diseases” for which they can prescribe drugs or surgery.)

As we returned from the doctor’s office, the idea came to scuttle the Southwest trip. It would reduce our stress not to be back on the road. We could just unwind while visiting family. We could produce ahead some Peak Moment shows recorded but not produced. We could start downsizing at Lone Bobcat Woods sooner. And the travel dollars saved could go towards health care, none of which is covered by insurance.

Where will we live, once the house is sold? We don’t know, but our eyes are on the Pacific Northwest. It’s Robin’s home region, and a place we both love for water, mountains, evergreen trees. We’ll still have a Nevada County home base at Bearhaven meadow where we live in our RV at the edge of the South Yuba River canyon. We’ll store our belongings in a shipping container, ready to transport when and where the Universe points the way forward. The adventure continues!

In closing, thanks to everyone who made end-of-year contributions. We do appreciate it  anytime!

~Janaia and Robin

Widening circles


Prof. Guy McPherson returns to Grass Valley on March 10-11 and Chico on March 13-14 (an evening presentation on “Abrupt Climate Change” plus a grief workshop). If you haven’t heard Guy yet, his is arguably the most important message to hear at this time.

Watch or hear our Peak Moment TV interview with Guy, Climate Change and Human Extinction – A Personal Perspective. Here’s his November 2014 talk in Grass Valley. And a circle discussion on climate reality acceptance in Chico.

Videos to Look Forward to

food-rules-coverWe videoed Dr. Cate Shanahan in Napa on our way south. Her book Deep Nutrition really spoke to us in 2013. Her latest, Food Rules: A Doctor’s Guide to Healthy Nutrition is short, sweet, and simple. One tip per page, tips like eating real foods (no sugars, not processed) with as much variety (biodiversity!) as you can. We talked about the four pillars of world cuisine – what traditional cultures everywhere share in common. Like eating meat on the bone (for all the good nutrients) and fermented foods.

New Videos from Peak Moment TV

Beale_light_550Emergency! This Family is Prepared, part 1. “We base our emergency kit around our camping gear,” says Tim Beale, showing us a carefully packed wheeled tote. His partner Ann Pacey lists essential areas to address, starting with financial records and ending with communications – including a plan to get back in touch with loved ones after an emergency. Their show-and-tell includes gear and advice for cooking, lighting, heat and power, food, water storage and filters, sanitation, clothing, and first aid/medical. Episode 279.

PM280_640Emergency! This Family is Prepared, part 2. “YOYO: You’re On Your Own. We can’t count on first responders. Their focus is on critical resources.” Ann Pacey and Tim Beale show their “second-story kit” in case of earthquakes. Noting that a key injury is broken glass, they have boots, gloves, flashlight and hard hat under their upstairs bed. Plus a folding ladder to get to the ground in case they can’t get downstairs. They discuss good books, a folding shopping cart for easy mobility, and neighbors assisting one another. When their cat jumps onto the table, they discuss planning for pets in emergencies, too! Episode 280.

PM281_640The Sharing Economy — By the People and For the People. “If you want to change something, don’t attack the existing reality. Instead, build a new model that makes the old one irrelevant.” Quoting Buckminster Fuller, David Van Seters believes the sharing economy will help make the current dysfunctional economy obsolete. Sharing is age-old, he says. Now combined with internet social media, it is becoming an unstoppable phenomenon. He cites examples of sharing rooms and homes, empty space in cargo trucks, tools, land, and even “waste” materials. Many people start a sharing enterprise to save money or get supplemental income for under-utilized assets. “But what causes them to continue is the surprising amount of benefit from community connections.” Episode 281.

pm282_640Join the “Eat-All Greens” Garden Revolution. “I spent five minutes spreading the compost on the driveway, two minutes sprinkling the seed, and maybe five minutes to harvest the whole patch. And I had maybe twenty pounds of nutritious leafy greens.” From this spur-of-the-moment idea, plant breeder Carol Deppe spent decades finding the most productive “eat-all greens” varieties with edible stalks. With three or four crops a year in a bed no larger than 4×12 feet, you can produce a couple hundred pounds of greens. The author of The Tao of Vegetable Gardening believes that this could revolutionize nutritious food production in urban food deserts, small plots and even commercial greens production. Episode 282.

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Produced by Robin Mallgren and Janaia Donaldson, Yuba Gals Independent Media
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