Tuesday, September 2, 2014

to change and grow...

-- Quote of the Day -- 

"Sometimes in tragedy we find our life's purpose ;
the eye sheds a tear to find its focus."

 ~Robert Brault

 Today's quote sends me to gratitude... I'm grateful for the tragedy, the grief, the hardships I've encountered so far in my 44 years on this earth in this life. Without them I wouldn't be where I am, with the people I love or the location that feeds my soul each day. I wouldn't have the skills I do, the passion I have to make a difference and live consciously with every moment I am given. I know what poverty is and how to deal with it without going crazy. When things go horribly wrong, when we loose someone, when life takes a bad turn we often realize just how resourceful we are, that we are stronger than we realized. 

Each challenge is an opportunity - so when something pops up that you have to face, try changing your perception of it to being a chance to learn, to grow, to change.

Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, their radio program, blog, and more at: http://brummet.ca * Support the Brummets by telling your friends, clicking those social networking buttons, or visiting the Brummet's Store - and help raise funds for charity as well! 

Monday, September 1, 2014

Scolarships and grants for people interested in Green Jobs - Part 1

OK - here is a 2-part discussion on environmental or green jobs that may interest people looking for a career change toward something that makes a difference in the world. Check out the resources and feel free to pass on the link to these 2 posts. Part 2 will be published on September 3rd

50 Awesome Scholarships For Eco-minded Students

* Written by Raj Prince 
For an aspiring university entrant who is also as passionate about environmental issues, obtaining a scholarship that is aligned with an organization that shares your personal advocacy can be quite a challenge. The more popular scholarship grants nowadays usually come from huge multinational corporations whose ecological advocacies are not wholly exercised.

But that's where the misconception ends. In fact, there are thousands of eco-friendly organizations that also offer college scholarships. So if you're one of this crowd and would like some assistance to finish a rather expensive university degree, you're in luck. A lot of groups and institutions are watching out for the next eco-minded student to grant awesome educational opportunities.

The most awesome scholarships for eco-minded students are, surprisingly, just right under our very noses. You may approach the following organizations and institutions for general scholarship opportunities.

1. The environmental divisions of the college or university where you are applying.

2. Civic organizations and local community groups

3. Major global environmental groups, like Greenpeace

4. Government agencies that focus on natural resource and environmental issues

5. Local and national science fairs and contests

6. Private business organizations and media outlets that support environmentalism

7. Organizations that advocate conservation

8. Waste and waste management firms

9. Charities that offer environmental programs

10. Annie's Homegrown Sustainable Agriculture Scholarship - Students engaged in food and agriculture related courses and study programs could be awarded around $2,500 to $10,000.

11. Ben Meadows Natural Resource Scholarship - This is open to junior and senior high school students interested in the likes of urban forestry, agro forestry, natural resource management, wildlife management, fisheries management, and other related subjects. The organization simultaneously awards two scholarships worth $2,500.

12. The Garden Club of America - Three $2,000 scholarships are offered to students who want to take up environmental studies during the summer.

13. The Switzer Foundation - Offers a $15,000 fellowship to graduate students already taking up environmental studies and would want to expand their range. Open to students from California and New England.

14. The Vegetarian Resource Group Scholarship - Offers two $5,000 scholarships to students who advocate vegetarianism.

15. Beulah Frey Environment Scholarship - Offers an additional incentive of $1,000 through a contest among applicants who want to major in an environment-related subject.

16. Surfrider Foundation Scholarship - Offers three merit awards to students in good standing and who are already members of the foundation. One undergraduate gets $2,000, Masters level gets $3,000, while PhD gest $5,000.

17. Institute of Ecosystem Studies Research Experiences for Undergraduates - Offered to 8 to 12 undergrads who want to conduct research on an ecological topic. The program runs for 12 weeks, from May to August; and students are given a $4,800 stipend.

18. SCA Conservation Internship

19. NNEMS Fellowship Program - offers eco-students the opportunity to join in a fellowship project. It's sponsored by the Environmental Education Division in the EPA Office of Children’s Health Protection and Environmental Education.

20. Brower Youth Awards - Named after environmentalist David Brower. Six young environment activitists are each awarded $3,000 plus a one-week gathering in San Francisco, to attend the Bioneers event and join an overnight backpacking event. Open to students 13-22 years old.

21. Morris K. Udall Scholarship - Offers $5,000 scholarships every year to 80 undergrads who are looking to enter environmental studies and native health care. Students will also be sent to Arizona for a one-week leadership conference.

22. Windstar Environmental Studies Scholarship - Founded by singer John Denver and Thomas Crum. Awards one $1,000 scholarship to a graduate student, and two $500 scholarships to undergrads (junior and senior students)

23. Dr. W. Wesley Eckenfelder Scholarship - Offers a $3,000 scholarship for environmental science, chemical, civil and environmental engineering students.

24. Middlebury Fellowship in Environmental Journalism - Awards $10,00 in reporting and board & lodging expenses to budding writers engaged in environmental writing, including face-to-face trainings and ongoing support throughout the year.

25. Nicodemus Wilderness Project Apprentice Ecologist Initiative - Offers $500 to 13 to 21 year old students upon completion of an apprentice ecologist project.

Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, their radio program, blog, and more at: http://brummet.ca * Support the Brummets by telling your friends, clicking those social networking buttons, or visiting the Brummet's Store - and help raise funds for charity as well! 


Sunday, August 31, 2014

Heat from compost ???

-- Innovative Use For Compost -- 

Many of our loyal blog readers and former radio show listeners may remember the many times I've highlighted the benefits of composting, composting organizations and companies, how-to compost, compost systems, and how some companies have high-tech set ups where they are able to encourage and collect gasses released from the composting process that are used as fuel to heat buildings, create electricity and so on.

Today I'd like to talk a little about one really interesting way for at-homer's to use their compost in yet another way.

As most gardeners know, composts can generate a lot of heat. Some gardeners place a compost pile next to their greenhouse for the winter months, others will put a compost inside the greenhouse with a pipe for ventilation. The heat from the compost will help the greenhouse compete with the colder days of winter, and I suppose it would be pleasant to venture into a warm greenhouse to dump the kitchen compost bucket and not have to deal with snow, etc.

What a lot of people are doing now is building a compost pile over plastic water lines that are then filled with water. The water in those lines will absorb the heat, and because temperatures can get up to 149˚, the water can get quite hot. By pumping the water through radiant floors or into the hot water system, people can save up to 80% of their costs. 

Want to learn more about this? Check out the links below:


Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, their radio program, blog, and more at: http://brummet.ca * Support the Brummets by telling your friends, clicking those social networking buttons, or visiting the Brummet's Store - and help raise funds for charity as well!  

Saturday, August 30, 2014

World of Writing, interview

-- World of Writing -- 

Neal James began writing in 2007 when a series of short stories found favor on a number of international writing sites. Since then, he has released five novels and one anthology. He has appeared in both the national and local press, and has also been a regular at branches of Waterstones and local reading groups and libraries in his home counties of Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire. Find out more about Neal James and all of his writing on his website:  www.nealjames.webs.com

Q: How have your books gotten published?

After self-publishing a selection of my short stories using Lulu, I began looking around, in 2007, for a publishing house prepared to launch my first novel. I came across Pneuma Springs after failing to grab the attention of any of the usual literary agencies and publishing houses, and have remained with them ever since. Pneuma are a publishing company operating in Kent, in the south east of England, and use the "Print On Demand" method of publishing.

Q: What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?

I usually decide how a particular story is going to end, and then draw out a plot around that strategy. Of course, the ending planned is not always the one I started out with, but that in itself makes the writing so much more interesting. There are always twists and turns in my books, and I try to keep the reader guessing right until the end.

Q: What has been the most surprising thing you learned from creating your books?

The fact that, as a relatively unknown author, large book chains like Waterstones and the network of libraries in the UK have all taken my writing seriously. This has given me a window into other media such as radio and internet blogging sites, and I am building up quite a following using social media like Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and Google+.

Q: How many books/stories have you written?

I currently have six books (five novels and one anthology) in circulation. The books are all crime related at the moment, but the volume of short stories covers a wide range of literary genres. My short stories number over one hundred and have featured in our local press and a number on internet writing sites. 

Q: Do you have any suggestions to help others become a better writer?

Read widely, particularly in the genre which interests you as far as your own writing goes. Look at the established authors and see how they weave their stories together. Study the characters which they create and try to understand how the authors flesh them out – there’s nothing worse than a two-dimensional hero. Never, never, try to edit your own work – it’s invariably a bad idea. Get an editor competent in the structure of English grammar to check for errors. They will be there.

Q: Do you hear from your readers? / What do they say?

Yes I do. I have yet to receive a bad review, and feedback via e-mail and the usual social media sites has been more in the line of asking when the next book will be coming out. The main question I am faced with relates to how I manage to dream up the plots which come out in my books. The answer is always ‘imagination’ – without that, writing would be superfluous.

   Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, their radio program, blog, and more at: http://brummet.ca * Support the Brummets by telling your friends, clicking those social networking buttons, or visiting the Brummet's Store - and help raise funds for charity as well!  

Friday, August 29, 2014

Prank it forward

Whew - OK - so "a few days" ended up being a week, before I could get back over to this blog. After dozens of jars canned, containers frozen, jams jarred up, and many meals and sharings with friends, family, neighbors and co-workers... we have caught up to the supply. We had a horrific wind yesterday that knocked down a beautiful ornamental sunflower in the garden - it split at the base as if a saw went through the stalk. I grieved for that plant - it was so lovely, so bright yellow, so tall, so many flowers on it yet to bloom, such an attractive plant that brought lots of pollinators... and today it is wilted, lying on its side. Sad. 

Thank you for your patience in this regard. I hope you enjoyed scrolling through the archives, though, viewing posts and following the many links they offer. 

Today I'd like to share with you a link that my eldest brother sent me (thanks, Larry!):

-- Prank It Forward -- 

MediocreFilms "pranked" a homeless shelter - by turning it into a 5-star restaurant. Some of the participants had never felt respected, most had never been treated so special, and quite a few had never, ever had steak in their lives! Find out how you can help people in need by sharing a prank at Prank It FWD.

 According to the Prank It FWD website - (http://sites.break.com/prank-it-fwd) "Break.com is bringing back its “pranks for good” campaign for charity. To raise awareness for homelessness and poverty during the holidays, Break will donate $1 for every 1,000 views any of its positive prank videos receives. To raise the stakes, Break will also donate $1 for every share of its pranks that includes the hashtag #PrankitFWD. All money raised goes towards the non-profit organization, DoSomething.org."

I watched several of the videos they had up on that site and ended up with tears of joy, just sharing the emotions of the people involved. Thank goodness for organizations like this and the many people behind that make it possible. 

Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, their radio program, blog, and more at: http://brummet.ca * Support the Brummets by telling your friends, clicking those social networking buttons, or visiting the Brummet's Store - and help raise funds for charity as well! 

Friday, August 22, 2014

Apologies to our readers - I've been inundated with processing harvests from our garden and neighbor's generosity, canning, freezing, making soups and casseroles, jams, jellies, sauces, etc. As such I've been taking a few days off from the blog and hope you understand. Please do scroll through the archives though and hopefully enjoy anything you've missed so far. I'll be back soon!

In appreciation - your friendly blogger,

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Online Advertising Strategies

4 Types of Online Advertising Strategies Every Business Should Look Into

* Today's article was contributed by Tiffany Olson who works full-time at Optimize Worldwide, a Northern California  marketing company specializing in online advertising, SEO, and website development. Creating more powerful results for their clients.

In a world where the average person uses the Internet for a good part of their day, whether it’s for business or for pleasure, companies must adjust their marketing efforts if they want to be discovered by consumers. While traditional advertising with magazines, newspapers, television and radio may never go completely out of style, there is definitely a growing need for businesses who really want to stand out from the competition to incorporate online advertising strategies into their plans. Those companies, in particular, that are working with smaller marketing budgets can often see their dollar go a lot further on the Internet than on other advertising platforms. If you’re just beginning to explore your online options, these are a few good places to start.

Search Engine Marketing

Search engine marketing refers to the paid advertisements that can be seen at the very top or along the side of search results in Google, Bing, etc. that are related to the keywords for a specific product or service. Those areas are prime real estate in search engine results since the majority of consumers never get past the first few rankings. This is also referred to as pay-per-click advertising because, as an advertiser, your money is spent only when a possible customer actually clicks on the ad, sending them to your website for more information.

Social Media Advertising

Social media is no longer just for posting your current mood or pictures of your recent vacation. Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, etc. are all viable networks for catching the attention of consumers from all over the world and offer their own advertising alternatives. With hashtags and live chats, it’s never been easier to discover what people are talking about and how you can relate that to your business. Social media advertising allows you to target your campaigns to a certain audience who has already expressed interest in your product or service. Another advantage is knowing that social media is used throughout the day and on all types of devices, so your ads can be seen from anywhere at any time. 


A newer approach that businesses have found to be successful is something called retargeting marketing. This involves tracking consumers that have recently visited your website or clicked on a banner ad but didn’t make a transaction. Retargeted ads serve to remind them of their previous interest by following them around to different sites that they visit. Seeing the product or service pop up again and again creates brand awareness and it becomes more likely for the consumer to choose your company when they decide to convert into a paying customer.

Banner Ads

Banner ads use text and images to appeal to Internet users and call them to action (click for more details, call now, schedule an appointment, etc.). These ads are static and placed on multiple websites around the Internet according to the specific audience you wish to target. Once an ad is clicked on, the customer will be redirected to the company’s site to complete their transaction or to learn more details about the business and their offerings.

Not every company is going to have the same online advertising needs, so it’s important to do your research about each strategy and decide which plan would be the most beneficial to you and reach the most potential customers.

  Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, their radio program, blog, and more at: http://brummet.ca * Support the Brummets by telling your friends, clicking those social networking buttons, or visiting the Brummet's Store - and help raise funds for charity as well!