Saturday, December 6, 2008

Holiday cost saving idea, volunteer travel & social discussion

-- Quote of the Day --

“…I just love people and I always feel the awe and majesty of the psyche to bring order out of chaos. …There is an actual ordering principle in the mind, just like in the body when you cut yourself and the body immediately moves to heal the wound – and the same thing is happening in the mind. …I just wanted to know more about that. I focused on family… and then couples – I saw that we had not really taught 3 important things in our culture. …How to get along with the person we are going to live with the rest of our life, how to raise children so that they are motivated and with good self esteem, and how to deal with stress and anger. And those three areas are part of what I consider the ‘civil’ part of ‘civilization’. …The whole concept of peace and war begins in our personal world – in our mind – and under our roof!”
~ Maria Andrade 10/21/08

The quote that I've shared with you today is so very powerful - when you think about it we teach our children many things, but life skills like creating meaningful relationships, communications, listening & other skills like these somehow get placed to the side. It has been my experience that both homeschool & public education is based on memorizing & conforming rather than exploring of self and the world. Perhaps this new year will bring our society more inspiration in developing this side of our young ones. Their world is unstable, filled with technology, fast moving knowledge, multi-tasking... they need this stability more than any other previous generation.

To access this interesting interview with Maria Andrade simply head over to the Conscious Discussions website (see link to right or click on hyper-linked show title here in the blog). Look for October 21, 2008 in the list of archives - located on the right side of the show's site, underneath the links.

-- Experience the Joy of a Green Holiday Season --

A great way to reuse wrapping paper is to create reusable gift bags. Using a cereal box as a template, wrap paper around it as you would a package, leaving the top open. For a strong top edge, fold the top over about an inch and glue in place. Punch two holes at the top of the sides for the string handles. Leave the box in if you would like a stronger bag. This craft reuse idea can apply to any paperboard box.

Speaking of paperboard boxes… and when I say this I mean cereal and cracker boxes, pasta boxes and the like – products like these are referred to as paperboard. These items are fantastic for creating gift boxes. Simply design the box according to the size you require – all you need is a little know-how, a ruler, pencil and a sharp craft knife or scissors and some glue. Once the box is constructed and the glue has cured, take a little craft sponge (a little sponge on a stick) and pour some glue into a recycled lid from one of old mayonnaise jars or something like that. Then, using the sponge, spread glue evenly on one side at a time - covering it with sheets of reused wrapping paper, comic strips or art that you or your children have created… – or new wrapping paper if you must. Remember, do only one side at a time or you will find yourself having some potential issues with this.

Decorate with a little ribbon, tiny pine cones or bows or whatever you wish, and you have just created a reusable gift box for the recipient to pass along to someone else whenever they are handing out presents. If you’ve been saving all your bits and pieces – decorations & wrapping paper - from gifts you’ve received in the past, they will come in handy now. Reusing that shiny foil wrapping paper you’ve been saving works best for this – especially since it is not recyclable. Scraps of wrapping paper work well for these crafts too, so don’t throw away those little 4 inch square bits of wrapping paper anymore!

* There's still time to order one of our 3 books in as a gift for the holiday season... Most online bookstores (,, etc) carry the books or you can order them in from your local retailer. Remember, 30% of the royalties we receive from book sales goes to charity! for more info visit:

-- Authors Read --

Featured guest of the day - Dorothy S. Conlon was born in Japan and has lived a life of travel and adventure in places like Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Indonesia, India and Pakistan teaching, volunteering and exploring around the world. Her book, At Home in the World takes you through some of her journeys. Today, Dorothy shared a brief excerpt of her book on Authors Read radio. To access this author's reading simply click on the hyper-linked show title here in the blog, click on the link for the show on the right of this page or click on the image below - any of these will get you there. ;)
Listen to Authors Read on internet talk radio

Find Dave & Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, information about their radio shows & free resources & articles at

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