Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Focus, Dammit

Blessings, Darlings!

I've already lost one Twitter follower over what I'm going to post here (and I sure didn't go into as much detail in 140 characters as I'm going to do here).  But, for goodness sake folks, if you are getting something out of your life - be it meat, or refined carbs, or people or whatever - then really get the things out of your life.  Stop blogging/posting/commenting on what is OUT of your life, and focus on what is IN your life.

Focusing on what is 'not in your life' keeps the stuff IN your life.

If you've gone vegetarian, stop the obsessing with other people eating meat - otherwise 'meat' is still a focus of your life.  If someone offers you some, you just say 'I don't do that anymore, thanks" and eat something else.

Same thing if you have decided to no longer let your past limit you now.  Stop pointing out the scars you got from your past.  Pointing them out - focusing on the scars - keeps the past as your organizing principle.

Friends/family keep bringing up your ex? Calmly say that you are not going to discuss that issue any more, it's over, and change the subject.  And do NOT change it to "why do you keep insisting on discussing 'this topic'.  Change it to something positive or future oriented.  Like your planned vegan meal for dinner, and how you love it (see?  not how you are 'replacing meat with X, Y, or Z).

Remember that Zen allegory:  "Older monk and younger monk walking to the next town together.  At a river, there is a woman trying to cross, unsuccessfully, so is back on the short, crying or whatever.  As monks, they aren't even supposed to NOTICE women (which I think is bullshit, and that this is an American story 'set in Asia to be cool', but, well, whatever).  The older monk, saying nothing, picks the woman up and crosses the river with her.  On the other side, still silent, he puts her down and continues on his way.

"Younger monk is fuming!  They walk for a few hours, and then younger monk turns to his companion, saying "WTF? We aren't supposed to touch women, we aren't supposed to NOTICE women, and there you were, picking one up.  You are SO full of crap!"  Older monk looks at him, and replies "I put the woman down hours ago - why are you still carrying her?"

Just do it.

Frondly, Fern

Monday, July 11, 2011

Cheap, Not Easy

Blessings, Darlings!

Did you know that the USDA estimates how much it costs to eat? "The Thrifty, Low-Cost, Moderate-Cost, and Liberal Food Plans each represent a nutritious diet at a different cost. The Thrifty Food Plan is the basis for food stamp allotments."  The site with ALL the links is here http://www.cnpp.usda.gov/USDAFoodPlansCostofFood.htm.

The most recent data - for May, 2011 - is available here: http://www.cnpp.usda.gov/Publications/FoodPlans/2011/CostofFoodMay2011.pdf  (where they also have links to what they figure people will each on each plan.)  According to them a family of thee, one woman my age, one man my husband's age, one man my son's age, will need to spend $494.90 a month ON THE THRIFTY - the LOWEST COST - of the plans.

Right now my budget for all 'grocery' type items (food, cleaning supplies, cat supplies including Frontline but NOT including the vet) I'm spending $400 a month.   Which I suppose explains why I'm finding this really really hard to live on. That's rather a relief, as I had begun to think that I was screwing up somehow.

I could not do this without having a freezer - which allows me to shop sales and stock up on things.  And I certainly couldn't do this if I wasn't cooking almost everything from scratch, which probably means I couldn't do it if I had to leave the house to work.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Castle of Arianrhod

                     Castle of Arianrhod

presented by
The Fellowship of the Ancient White Stag

Assembly of the Sacred Wheel Elder Michael Smith will be teaching a fascinating workshop and leading the Castle of Arianrhod ritual.
This is an open & free event--however donations are welcomed and will benefit
the New Alexandrian Library.
Class size and ritual size are limited to 40 people.

For more information and to preregister,


Monica (

Date: July 30

Time: Gather: 1:30, workshop 2:00
Location: Sandy Spring Community Center
17801 Meeting House Rd
Sandy Spring MD 20860