Montana Bear Tragedy

I received this email from a friend of mine...her sister's comment is below the picture. My friends comment is below that. Pretty hilarious.

Email reads:
Everybody should heed the warnings not to feed wildlife because they become dependent and don't forage for themselves any longer. It is such a tragedy to see what has been done to our country's wildlife.
The photo below captures a disturbing trend that is beginning to affect U.S. wildlife.


Animals that formerly were self-sufficient are now showing
signs of belonging to the Democrat Party.
They have apparently learned to just sit and wait for the government to step in and provide for their care and sustenance. This photo is of a black bear in Montana turned Democrat.
He's nicknamed Bearack Obearma. It is believed that he has become a campground organizer.
My friend's version:

Owing to greed and arrogance, this Republican black bear, known around the campgrounds as Herman "Raisin'" Cain, killed and ate 99% of the tourists who visited his park and now has to sit and wait for meals to be brought to him. Unfortunately, his lazy and incompetent colleagues, the rest of the 1%, have never had a moment's experience gathering or preparing a meal, and would be too selfish to share if they did. Raisin' would eat his young, if he could, but his wife left him after numerous sex scandals. Sorry, dude, you're fucked.


Healing of the Nation Event Canceled!

I regret to inform you that the event which was happening on Sunday, September 11, 2011, "Healing of the Nation: Reggae and Yoga Festival" has been canceled until further notice....The City of Long Beach still has some growing up to do!


California Coastal Cleanup Day 2011

It's time to make a difference! Join us for California Coastal Cleanup Day on Saturday, September 17 from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM. This annual event, sponsored by the California Coastal Commission and the City of Long Beach, is designed to increase public awareness about marine debris and inspire community action. Coastal Cleanup Day is a great opportunity for volunteers of all ages to help keep our beaches clean and healthy.

All you need to do is show up at any of our six beach cleanup sites and sign in. Cleanup supplies and free parking will be provided at each site. To limit the amount of bags we use, we encourage all participants to bring their own reusable bag or bucket to pick up trash.

Alamitos Beach
Ocean Blvd., at Alamitos Ave.
Belmont Pool
4000 E. Olympic Plaza
Bluff Park
Ocean Blvd., at Coronado.
Colorado Lagoon
E. Appian Way at Colorado St.
Mother's Beach
E. Appian Way under the 2nd St. Bridge
Pierpoint Landing
200 Aquarium Way

For more information visit http://www.longbeach.gov/naturecenter/ccd.">http://www.longbeach.gov/naturecenter/ccd. What you clean today can have a positive impact for our beaches for years to come. Please join us on September 17 and help make a difference.

Long Beach Events!!

For those of you virtually vegans who like to have fun and maybe try out Kundalini yoga below are some events you might be interested in checking out...some are happening these weekend....and below those are listed ongoing dates for Kundalini!! I highly suggest you try this amazing style of yoga and Christine Cox is a wonderful teacher who will guide you through it gracefully....hope to see you around!!

Saturday, September 1o, 2011
3pm - 9pm
3rd Annual Latin American Day Parade
PARADE: Pine Avenue Between 6th - 3rd / FESTIVAL: Promenade Between 3rd and 5th.
Sirena Serpentina Closes this Event with Tribal Fire Bellydance!!


(Aldana Mica will have a booth at the event below....)

Sunday, September 11, 2011
10am - 8pm
Healing of the Nation: Reggae and Yoga Festival
Alfredo's Beach Club at Cherry Beach
Long Beach, CA

A Healing and Educational Celebration
Live Music
Fire Dancin'
Healing Arts

Sopurkh (ME) will be sharing Kundalini Yoga & Meditation 5:30pm

Sirena Serpentina Firedance Performance at Dark!

Monday, September 12, 2011
9pm - 12am
Full Moon Kundalini Kriya and Drum Circle
Trilogy Yoga
3141 E. Broadway
Long Beach, CA, 90803

Pisces Full Moon Celebration
Come Meditate and Manifest all of your creative powers! The Pisces Full Moon reminds us to DREAM BIG and let our truth shine on and on and on!

Kundalini Yoga and Meditation
Drumming and Dancing
Yogi Tea and Treats
Suggested Donation:: $20



Sunset Kundalini Yoga
Bluffs - Corner of Junipero and Ocean, LBC
Donations Welcome

Morning Kundalini Yoga
Bluffs - Corner of Junipero and Ocean, LBC
Donations Welcome

Tribal Fusion Bellydance
Omadawn Yoga Studio - 1650 PCH, Seal Beach
$17 or Class Package

Morning Kundalini Yoga
Bluffs - Corner of Junipero and Ocean, LBC
Donations Welcome

Bluffs - Corner of Cherry and Ocean, LBC
Donations Welcome


LB Surfrider giving away reusable bags!!

LB Surfrider is giving out reuseable bags this weekend!

In support of the single use plastic bag ban, the Long Beach Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation is giving away reusable shopping bags at two upcoming events. If you're having a difficult time affording reusable shopping bags stop by our table and get one for free! We hope to see you this weekend and one of our events:

Friday August 19, 9AM - 12 noon, McBride Park Free Food Giveaway. California Recreation Park, 1550 Martin Luther King Junior Avenue, Long Beach, CA 90813.

Saturday August 20, 10am - 12 noon, Food 4 Less, 6700 Cherry Ave., Long Beach, CA 90805.

longbeach@lbsurfrider.orgSurfrider Foundation Long Beach Chapter


Meatless Monday in EWG's New Study: A Meat Eaters Guide to Climate Change and Health!

Following is an email I received from Meatless Monday which I would like to share with you all...please read and pass it on! Also, I attached some really cute pictures of our kitty Silvi...he loves nori!

Hi Everyone-

Some of you may have already heard, but today the Environmental Working Group released a lifestyle analysis of the links between meat consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.

The Meat Eaters Guide to Climate Change and Health can help you to determine which protein sources are the most and least carbon friendly. At www.ewg.org/meateatersguide you can take their quiz and see how much you know as well as find great educational materials to learn more. They embrace the Meatless Monday concept and even recommend the recipes on MeatlessMonday.com (which come from you!) to improve personal and planetary health.

We hope this new research (re)inspires you to commit to go without meat, one day a week!

Happy Monday!


The Growing Experience featured in the LA Times!!

I'm pleased to let you know that The Growing Experience was featured in the online version of the LA Times Home Section today. Here's the link:


It's a great write-up about our local Long Beach farm and the programs they operate for the community. Check it out if you have a minute, and please leave a comment at the end of the article-there's a possibility that they could be featured in Sunset Magazine, if there's a lot of interest. That would be great to put Long Beach on the map! As usual, thanks for your support.


Green Long Beach Festival 2011

Join Green Long Beach! on Saturday June 11th as we “IGNITE CHANGE” towards sustainability within our local community and economy. Prominently located in downtown Long Beach on the Promenade between Broadway & 3rd St. from 10am – 8pm.

This year’s stimulating educational workshops will include Merry Blues Art: Green Cleaning Concepts at 12:30pm, Leap Frog Yoga: Kid’s Yoga, Linda Nicoles: “Plug-In America,” Rosie The Riveter High School: “Overview of program,” Stas Margaronis:“Rebuild the United States,” Theo Chocolates: “The Dark Side of Chocolate,” Apiana Native Landscaping: “Native Landscaping,” Stella Ursua: “What the Heck is a Green Collar Job,” Carol Rasaphangthong & Amy Tanaka Presents:“Cool Town Claymation,” and MORE!

LB Green Festival website


2011 Etsy Craft Party

happening this Friday June 10th 7pm-10:30pm at 423 S. Brookhurst St. Anaheim, CA 92804

Learn how to:
-screen print
-make seed bombs
-hand sew

$10 per person or free if you bring your own project



Nature Walk with Herbalist Julie James at Ernest E. Debs Regional Park!

.......books from Julie's collection....

Last Saturday, we went on a nature walk with the meet up group "Green Wisdom".....Julie James, the master herbalist, guided our group through this beautiful park, recognizing over 20 plants, many of which we could eat and use in soups, make infusions and use for wounds and inflammation...to say the least....below are the pictures and names for each plant...along with my notes....

1) Coyote Mint, poofy purple flower, Laminaceae family like Rosemary

2) Bella Donna, somewhat toxic (night shade family)

3) Oak Tree, has tannins, boil leaves and apply to wounds, anti-inflammatory, cooling, good for skin irritations, constriction of tissue, use leaves dry or fresh, bark is medicinally stronger and the root is even stronger.

4) Mule Fat

5) Willie Blue Pearls, anti-microbial, Laminaceae family

6) Elder, common CA plant, beige flower clusters, best known as Elderberry, seeds are toxic if consumed in large amounts, black elderberry syrup is delicious and recipes can be found online, harvest berries around spring time to make syrup (remove seeds), improves circulation if taken over a long period of time, strengthens eyes and heart. Flower: immune system, make apple cider vinegar extraction and keep it for years!

7) Black Sage (salvia), Laminaceae family, anti-fungal, rich in essential oils, cooling and constrictive affect, helps reduce perspiration (make an extraction in vinegar for 2 weeks or stick leaves in your socks and walk on them).

8) Sage Brush (not salvia), aromatic, anti-microbial and anti-fungal, good for pelvic area and uterus, not good for pregnant women, stimulates the liver and gall bladder, Asteraceae family....sorry, no picture.

9) Mugwart, stimulates dreaming

10) Green Walnut Tree, good for parasites (extract), harvest unripe hulls to make tincture....forgot to photograph....

11) Mustard Weed, on "Dirty Dozen" list because it's not a CA native and it's taking over the landscapes! High in sulfur, valuable for liver functions, warming affects for tissues, low metabolism, good if you have cold hands and feet.

12) Oat, also on Dirty Dozen list, harvest in early spring, milky oats are healing for the adrenals and nervous system. Oat straw: rich in calcium, magnesium and silica.

13) Goose Berry, tannin rich....also forgot to photograph....

14) Monkey Flower, for fear of the unknown

15) Loofa Plant!!

Loofa! But please remove the spiky things before using...

16) Horehound: respiratory system, good for excessive mucus, coughing, infection, extremely bitter taste, make a hot infusion or tincture.

17) Wild Lettuce, gentle sedative, make infusion or extract.

18) Milk Thistle, liver supporter, seeds can be eaten, not water soluble, make tincture/alcoholic extraction or just eat them!

19) Cleveland Sage, flowers taste great in a salad.

20) Nettles, awesome nourishing plant! For those living in Long Beach and who can not grow their own nettles....there is a vendor at the Sunday's farmers market that sells nettles...she also sell yummy mushrooms!

21) Lemonade Berry, so sour!

22) Wild Rose, CA native

.....and there were many more but I stopped taking pictures and notes and just listened to Julie and enjoyed the rest of the walk.....


Volunteering for Bunnies at LBCC!!!

Picture found on this link

Yesterday was my first day volunteering at the bunny shelter located at LBCC Long Beach City College. I arrived at the shelter and was greeted by Donna Prindle, the caring leader of the group....She showed me around the shelter, introduced me to other volunteers and of course, the bunnies...We then started cleaning out their cages, feeding them pellets and changing their bedding and water....I couldn't believe it when she told me that they clean the cages every day...there are over 70 bunnies there!! That is a lot of cages and a lot of work.....It was a very fun experience, full of licks and some bites....the funnest part was when I got to cuddle with the bunnies...especially the little one....

So how do most of these bunnies end up there? Many inexperienced bunny owners drop them off and abandon them on campus...mostly after getting them from pet stores....w/o any training as to what the bunnies need and how to take care of them.....Easter time doesn't help either, as many parents get bunnies for their kids thinking they are cute at first and then realize the work involved.....these bunnies have not been neutered/spayed, therefore they reproduce....every 28 days they can have a new litter of around 8-12 bunnies....my goodness! Some of the female bunnies that show up at the shelter are already pregnant! I got to meet one of the bunny mom's and her 8 little ones, the cutest and softest creatures ever!!

Besides their cages being cleaned every day by volunteers, they get to hop around in play pins and receive a lot of love and cuddling time....their diets are pretty healthy too....they are fed veggie pellets, fresh apples, carrots and a bouquet of cilantro, kale, dandelion greens and parsley...while feeding them I was getting hungry myself! The shelter also takes care of neutering/spaying the bunnies so the population stays under control, thank goodness!

The bunnies at LBCC are in such good hands and it was a pleasure to be there and see how many caring people we have in our community.....next time I must bringing my camera so then I have pictures and videos to share with you all!

The shelter needs to find homes for these little guys and gals...and can always use more volunteer hands to help care for them as well. If you are interested in either of the above, please contact Donna Prindle at 562-938-4356 dprindle@lbcc.edu


Here is some news that I received from Meatless Mondays.....their sister organization, The Eat Well Guide, released this cool widget to help people eat local on Earth Day and everyday thereafter throughout the year. Eat Well Guide is a free online directory for anyone in search of fresh, locally grown and sustainably produced food in the United States and Canada. Include the food-finder widget (see the code below) on your website and/or blog, to provide your visitors with valuable sustainable food recommendations. Just type a zip code into the widget to find nearby sustainable restaurants, stores, farms and other producers from our growing list of over 23,000 vendors. Supporting sustainable agriculture is a delicious way to show your commitment to the earth 365 days a year.

You can also direct people to Eat Well Guide from your Facebook or Twitter pages with this link: Free sustainable food-finder widget makes every day Earth Day

Here’s a link to download all the Eat Well Guide widgets. Or just copy the code below my signature:


Here’s a preview of what the widget will look like:

As far as Monday widgets go, the Meatless Monday recipe widget and The Kids Cook Monday recipe widget are both now available:




Milan Kundera: humankind & animals

"Humanity's true moral test, its fundamental test, consists of its attitude towards those who are at its mercy: animals. And in this respect humankind has suffered a fundamental debacle, a debacle so fundamental that all others stem from it."
Milan Kundera

For more amazing quotes go here.

have a thoughtful weekend, wrapped up in books if possible.


Catalyst Chili Cook Off!!

For all you chili lovers!! Fund Raiser to support The Catalyst Space, a community center in the East Village Arts Distric....

This Saturday, March 26th, 2011 from 6-10pm at Trinity Lutheran Church
759 Linden Ave. Long Beach, CA 90813

Tickets are $10, includes chili samples, one full bowl of chili (your choice), corn bread, chili fixin's bar, dessert, soft drinks and fun music by DJ Frank Foreal aka Frank(e)

Judges will award 1st, 2nd and 3rd place prizes
1st place $100
2nd and 3rd place ribbons

Check out this site for more details:


Iodine: eat that seaweed and keep the radioactive kind at bay!

I came across this post from TheHerbalistSeattle.blogspot.com (which was a reposting of this article by Ryan Drum) and thought it was very appropriate to share especially for us on the Pacific coast fearing the consequences of possible nuclear meltdown across the ocean. Even if you're sitting pretty on the East Coast, or half way around the world in Mozambique, this information is useful and valuable in our nuclear age.

"Iodine 131 is hazardous because our bodies will happily take it in if we need iodine. Since prior to the human atomic age there was no iodine 131, we have no defense against it if we need iodine, and no way to selectively excrete it. IF we have sufficient iodine in our bodies, Iodine 127, the only natural iodine isotope, our bodies will not take in the heavier iodine 131... The critical information is: if we continually take in 150 micrograms of iodine 127 daily, we will most likely be protected from iodine-deficiency “iodine aggressive uptake”. We can do this by eating 5-10 grams of seaweeds daily. If we are worried about iodine 131 which reasonably might be expected in the seaweed, we can let the seaweed iodine 131 if any, decay for 8 weeks. How do we know and expect this seaweed iodine to be protective against iodine 131 fallout and decay? The Polish example. Within hours after the onset of the Chernobyl disaster, Polish authorities acted to get iodine solutions, potassium and sodium iodide tablets, even seaweed tablets and capsules into as many of their citizens as possible to protect them from the nearby huge amounts of iodine 131 coming their way. Over the intervening 20 years, the Polish people treated with iodine 127 have almost 1000 time less thyroid disease than neighboring countries even further than Poland from the Chernobyl disaster site."


nori rolls
miso soup with plenty of wakame, arame, nori, kombu
seaweed salad at your local japanese restaurant
delicious crinkly seaweed snacks
eat up!!


Let the muse in!

I absolutely positively love immersing myself in music on a regular basis, so I figured today I'd share that love with VVS readers, and introduce you to a GREAT Argentinian band called ONDA VAGA. These guys are just amazing so please watch the video below and then seek out their album (fuerte y caliente) in order to get a full taste of what they have to offer. so so good :)


Some Recipes from Joseph Nally.....

As it usually happens...when looking for something on the internet...you end up moving from page to page and find more than you were looking for.....that is how I came across this article while looking for cashews and happiness...it is interesting and inspiring and I thought it was worth sharing...if you would like to read it, please check out the link below as well as some of Joseph Nally's recipes....


Watermelon Gazpacho

From Joseph Nally, Spokane

4 cups watermelon, divided use

1 cup tomato

1 cup cucumber

½ cup red bell pepper

½ small jalapeno

1 green onion

1 small handful cilantro

1 teaspoon minced ginger

2 tablespoons lime juice

¾ teaspoon salt

Puree 3 cups of watermelon in a food processor or blender and place in a big bowl. Dice the remaining 1 cup of watermelon into small pieces and place in a bowl.

Seed and dice tomatoes, cucumber and bell pepper. Seed and mince jalapeno. Mince the green onion using all of the white part and about 1 inch of the green. Chop cilantro, puree ginger and add to bowl with lime juice and salt.

Stir everything together carefully. Ladle into chilled soup bowls or chill in fridge before serving.

Yield: 4 servings

Massaged Kale

From Joseph Nally, Spokane

1 large head kale, shredded

2 teaspoons olive oil

½ lemon

¼ teaspoon salt

Debone kale and cut into shreds. Massage oil, juice from lemon and salt into well-shredded kale for about two minutes. If possible, let sit for 10 minutes.

Serve with a light and creamy dressing.

Yield: 6 cups

Mac and Cashew Cheese

From Joseph Nally, Spokane

3 cups whole-wheat macaroni

½ red bell pepper

1 cup coconut milk

1 tablespoon lemon juice

2 cups water

¼ cup corn starch

¼ cup yeast flakes

1 teaspoon onion powder

2 ½ teaspoons salt

½ cup raw cashew pieces

1 cup bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook macaroni according to directions on package.

Meanwhile, blend the rest of the ingredients except the bread crumbs until very smooth.

Drain macaroni and combine the pasta with the sauce in a casserole dish. Cover with bread crumbs and bake, uncovered, for 1 hour or until the sauce is thick all the way through.

Yield: 6 cups

Jicama Salad

From Joseph Nally, Spokane

4 cups jicama, cut into large peeled pieces

2 roma tomatoes

½ cup green onion

1 cup corn

2 teaspoons lemon juice

¼ teaspoons salt

Peel the whole jicama first then cut into roughly 1-inch cubes. Process in a food processor until they become small shredded pieces. Place into a bowl.

Dice tomato and the green onion and place in the bowl along with the corn. Dress the salad with the lemon juice and salt and fold together.

Yield: 4 cups

Creamy Dill Dressing

From Joseph Nally, Spokane

1 cup cashews

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup water

Juice of 1 lemon

1 teaspoon onion powder

1 teaspoon garlic powder

Fresh dill, to taste

Blend everything except dill together in a blender until perfectly smooth. Fold in dill. Chill before serving.

Dressing can be refrigerated for up to a week. Great as a simple salad dressing, sauce for a pre-dressed salad, and as a spread on baked potatoes and some sandwiches.

Yield: 1 1/3 cups