Still Learning — Gut Feelings


It has been awhile since I shared my diet revelations here on Sunflower Girls. So here goes.

This adjustment does not demonstrate any drastic changes to what I’ve previously preached, but I feel it does give me an additional level of control over my health. As always, though, I insist that you do your own research and come to your own conclusions about what’s right and smart for you. My eating choices are still focused on two meals a day with every dish containing a large quantity of quality fat, a good amount of protein, and a smaller portion of carbohydrates. 

Find out what I’ve learned.

Posted in Choices, Diet, Food, Food Related, Reflections & Personal Perspectives | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Dealing with aging…..or revelling in it!

As I get older, I realize that this is a natural progression, from infant to youth, to adult, to elderly.  There is nothing I can do to stop the cycle…well there is, but the alternative is not attractive. I prefer to be on this side of the grass!

I have accepted the “me” that I see looking back from the mirror, wrinkles and all, and have come to like the ‘laugh lines’ that surround my mouth and eyes.

I have accepted the numerous skin tags that seem to be sprouting from nowhere on my neck and shoulders, and the white spots appearing on my legs that even a summer tan cannot hide.

I have accepted my thinning hair and failing eyesight, as well as the nightly trips to the bathroom. Also the osteoarthritis that has taken toll on my thumbs and wrists, though painful at times, is more of an annoyance than something that makes my life miserable.

I do however refuse to let my memory be affected by the unhealthy foods encouraged by the nutritionists of today.  The low fat trend is disturbing and can only end in disaster as younger and younger people succumb to type 2 diabetes, dementia and Alzheimer’s.  I have watched my mother as her memory has slowly deteriorated to the point where she can’t remember what she did 15 minutes before.  She is in her 91st year and is taking no prescription drugs. She uses a walker only to steady her if necessary. She has had a long life, raised 8 children and survived 2 partners, yet it is necessary for her to reside in a long term care facility. She needs help morning and night with dressing toileting, as well as weekly baths and help getting down to meals. When asked, she informs me that she does this on her own and has never had anyone help her. She is encouraged to take part in activities though afterwards she has no idea what she was involved in.

I have been taking coconut oil for 4 years now on a daily basis and have increased my fat intake and reduced carbs dramatically in the last year or so. I have ‘cured’ some minor bowel issues as well as fought off colds and flus by changing my diet and improving my immune system. I have never had a flu shot and intend to continue to refuse it. I believe we have to take charge of our own bodies, the internet is at our fingertips so lets make use of it!

We are what we eat!

Posted in Feelings, Reflections & Personal Perspectives, Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Today’s Yarn Has a Lovely Hook — Thrift Shops for Nova West Island

Yes, indeed! To be precise, if we unravel the stitches in this story , we will see that it involves not only volunteering, community, and loops of love, but also a well-used crochet hook. The babies’ afghans, shown above, were crocheted by Allison Irwin, one of our beloved, long-time volunteers who has been with the Thrift Shops for Nova from the […]

via Today’s Yarn Has a Lovely Hook — Thrift Shops for Nova West Island

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RePost of a Removed RiPoste


Shortly after I originally posted this back in 2011, I removed it. Why? Because I had unintentionally succeeded in hurting the feelings of one of my elderly neighbours.  Indeed, not only had I rejected his kind offer to blow the leaves off my front lawn, but I had also shared my opinion publicly.

Now, I will just take my chances that he no longer reads Sunflower Girls.


Leaf Blowers!

Posted on November 18, 2011 by Audie Jean

It seems that many of the men on my street feel compelled to blow leaves.

Quite routinely, these men (who probably consider themselves environmentalists) chase Autumn’s colourful calling cards to their final resting place.  At the very first opportunity, they start up their machines and adamantly blow the leaves around their yards and driveways, and across and down the street, and ultimately into the forested area to the east, stopping only when the ground is bare of all evidence of fall.  Of course, this has to be repeated several times until the trees too are bare.

Sadly, I don’t share the growing enthusiasm for these machines.  Yes, they clean up the yard and the driveway and the street, but at what price?  These blowers are aggressively noisy and, to some extent, even destructive of whatever is in their path.  And the time it  takes!  And the energy consumed!  And the resulting pollution! I cannot bear it!

Yes, I too have a lot of trees that give me lots of leaves and, though I love the idea of raking them, I don’t.  I find the activity hard on my elbows.  And I find the idea of bagging and leaving them at the curb quite silly.  So, I use my electric lawnmower and mulch them into the lawn, to eventually feed the grass, and the roots that produce the trees and the leaves that eventually must fall.  Actually, truth be known, I’m also a bit lazy.

Is it a perfect system?  No.  But it is much quicker and quieter and cleaner than the alternatives I see many choosing.

Oh well, the majority of the trees are bare, so the leaf blowing machines will soon be parked away.  And that’s a good thing.  All too soon they will need to be replaced by the snow blowers!

Posted in Gardening, Leaf Blowing, Mother Nature, Our Natural World, Recycling, Reflections & Personal Perspectives, seasons | 4 Comments

This Too Shall Pass


This summer, the lawns and gardens have been very parched and even a bit crispy in spots. Many people, of course, grumbled about it, while others simply pulled out the watering hoses and listened to the sighs of relief from the roots. I actually did neither, figuring that this too would pass. And so it did. Then for a few weeks, off and on, we had more than enough rain to make up for the previous lack.

But one thing has stood out to me. The dominoes have had an impact. This morning I was actually able to walk through the woods–about 15 minutes–with not one mosquito bite!

Posted in Gardening, Mother Nature, Our Natural World | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Clearing Out the Clutter

On this morning’s walk, I started listening to Marie Kondo’s The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, and can’t wait to get started with this new challenge! It all makes perfect sense and sounds almost easy–almost.

From what I’ve learned so far, tidying supposedly involves a simple decision: Discard the item or keep it and then find a place for it.

Among other things, I understand that to avoid failure, we should adopt the following:

  • Plan to tidy once, in one big process, not in stages, a little every day forever.
  • Work with categories, not locations.
  • Discard before you start tidying.
  • Focusing on how and where to store items is a recipe for  hoarding.
  • It is better to consciously decide what to keep, rather than to decide what to discard.
  • Aim for perfection.
  • Do it in silence.
  • Don’t let your family see what you discard.

Because I am really, really busy with life, I probably should actually add this project/activity to my schedule.

Because I share a home with someone who will almost certainly disagree with my choices, I will have to wait for the right occasion to start this.

Hmmm? Is that procrastination? Am I ready for this?

I’ll keep you informed of my progress.



Posted in Changes, Choices, Life, Recycling | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

So Many Benefits From Such a Small Investment



I knew I would get my money’s worth, but little did I know I would get it in spades!

Find out what I bought.

Posted in Feelings, Reflections & Personal Perspectives, Fun, Memories, Music, Reflections & Personal Perspectives | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Daily Delight for the Five Senses

This belongs here too, I think.

AJ's Classroom

Who: I and my 82-year-old companion

What:  walk 5 km

When: 7 a.m.

Where: the perimeter of our community

Why: for mental and physical well-being

How: briskly with lots of communication

Bonus: All of our senses are stimulated.

Yes, it’s true. Not only do we feel and smell the newborn morning air, and see the changes in Mother Nature’s palette, but we also read each other and communicate with a glance.

This kind of bond is founded on mutual respect, and it works beautifully because we never judge or try to control each other with corrections or criticism or evaluation of the reality of the other. We don’t fill our 45 minutes with telling each other what to do or think or feel, nor how to dress or act or speak. We simply welcome and share personal experiences, perceptions, opinions and feelings . We simply listen and hear and touch each other with our…

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A Trick to Treat You With

A Trick to Treat You With

A Trick to Treat You With

Oh, my! How we have changed!

Read more

Posted in Fun, Memories, Photo Manipulation | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Old Teachers Never … Stop Teaching

AJ's Classroom

P1330048 (1)

I’m curious about what inspires my need to teach.

Truly there is a force that compels me to take the information I process and share it with those I love. And it is not simply caring and sharing, but rather explaining, and rewording, and listening, and answering questions.

Truth be told, it also involves studying. Yes, “teaching is learning” and “re-teaching is re-learning.”

What I’m teaching these days is what I’ve learned–and unlearned–over the last five or more years about health and diets and drugs; I find it truly as fascinating as I did when I first learned it. Indeed, the rewording of what I understand is still rewarding–mostly because my 82-year-old student is as attentive and curious and as keen to learn as I am to teach.

The bonus is that our classroom is our daily five kilometre route at 8:00 in the morning.

Who could ask for more?

For the curious out there…

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