Posts Tagged ‘de-clutter’

Grab Bag BPA Knockout:

So here’s something we can all be more conscious of…

Following up on last week’s post about avoiding environmental toxins to better our hand at the Cancer Poker Table, I found this snippet as part of a recently published study (March 2011) by the Breast Cancer Fund and the Silent Spring Institute :

For three days, we provided fresh foodnot canned or packaged in plastic—to each family. They avoided canned foods and drinks and meals prepared outside the home.

The effect was significant. While the families were eating our food, their BPA levels dropped an average of 60 percent.

Our takeaway: you can reduce your BPA exposure by cooking fresh foods at home, avoiding canned foods, choosing glass and stainless steel food and beverage containers, and not microwaving in plastic. People may also want to consider eating fewer meals out, and dining at places that use more fresh ingredients.

I will add that we need to wash our hands after handling thermal paper receipts, which can have significant amounts of BPA.

PLEASE…. fill glass bottles with your own filtered tap water,

keep ice cold in your fridge…so yummy….

No more plastic bottled water!!

Please use glass containers for leftovers (click here for a suggestion)


Click on the image above to get a printable copy of this wallet-sized card listing 10 canned foods to avoid from the Breast Cancer Fund.

Grab Bag Well Lived Life:

Article by Adrian Savage:

If you want to look back on a life that fills you with joy, conventional rules for success are not the place to start.

1. Don’t chase money, power, or status. If they come to you, that’s fine. But most conventional ideas about success go wrong because they focus on outcomes instead of on the processes of living. Outcomes come around from time to time, but life itself—the process of living, acting, thinking, and being—happens all the time. No outcome is going to make a lousy, miserable process feel worthwhile.

If you hate what you do, no amount of power or money will make up for that. If your life is constantly stressful, boring, unhappy, or frustrating, how can achieving some high status once in a while make up for all the miserable days and weeks you spent getting there? It’s tempting to feel that the end will more than make up for the means; that you’ll forget the misery in the blaze of achievement. And you will—for a few moments. Then you’ll be back on the treadmill, with only the distant hope of some fresh achievement or monetary gain to console you. That’s like being a laboratory rat conditioned to unnatural behavior by occasional pellets of food.

2. Take whatever time you need to discover what matters to you most. Success isn’t simply a matter of money, power, or prestige. You could gain all of those and still feel that you have fallen short of what you wanted; or you could gain none of them and be blissfully happy and fulfilled. What constitutes personal success is mostly in your mind. It has much less to do with finding the best career in other peoples’ eyes, creating a killer business, or holding down a fancy job with a big salary than with achieving what really matters to you. Many people find this out too late. They struggle for years to get where other people said they should go, only to find it does little or nothing for them. Sad;y, it’s often too late by then to do anything else.

3. Don’t base your choices on others’ approval. We all want to please those we care about, so it’s natural to try to do what they approve. Natural, but rarely a good idea as the basis for life’s choices. I don’t say that you should deliberately ignore sound advice, or reject a career path simply because other people suggest it. But even the most loving parent or friend can’t always see what is going to make your heart sing. Listen to others. Value their input and their support. But go your own way. It’s better to be committed to doing what you truly love than accept something lesser for the sake of being approved by someone else.

4. Stay authentic. That means always doing what truly matters to you and is part of who you are. The simplest definition of a hypocrite is someone who says one thing and does another: like a person who says that he or she wants to work at something that benefits society, then forgets that at the first sight of a fistful of dollar bills. Somewhere inside of you is a part that recalls what truly matters and will never quite let you forget it. Over the years, that inner voice is only going to get louder.

5. Go for meaning over money every time. It’s perfectly possible to do something meaningless to you and earn a great deal of cash while doing so. Some people do, especially in parts of the media world. It just requires a stronger stomach and more cynicism that most people possess, plus a huge tolerance for boredom. Is it worth it? If money is truly all that matters to you—and you can make lots of it quickly and get out—it might be. Few areas of work will allow you to do that, aside from criminal ones. Meaningless days corrode most peoples’ minds and destroy their happiness. Doing something that means a great deal to you almost always makes you feel energized and alive. It’s your choice.

6. Be endlessly greedy—for learning. You can never learn too much or overfill your mind with new ideas. Nothing is more useful in life than a well-developed, well-stocked mind, especially one that has been broadened and enlarged in the process. It’s hard to name a single famously successful person who was narrow-minded, bigoted, or stupid. The list of notable successes who are recognized for the power of their minds is long. And you don’t have to have had an expensive education to be able to develop a great mind. There have been plenty of near geniuses whose education was almost entirely self-produced.

7. Make a friend of failure. You are certain to fail sometimes, and the higher your aspirations, the more frequent and significant that failure will be. People who don’t strive for anything glorious rarely fail; they take no risks and never aim beyond what is easily attainable. But if you treat failure as an enemy, it’s going to lead only to discouragement and even the abandoning of your hopes and dreams. Failure can be a friend, pointing out what isn’t right yet and showing you the way to do better. The more proficient you become at accepting the lessons of failure, the quicker you will succeed.

8. Make sure that every time you make a mistake, it’s a new one. Making the same mistake several times shows that you haven’t learned what it can teach you. Making new mistakes proves that you’re trying something different. The best definition of a loser is someone who makes the same mistakes over and over again, never managing to learn anything in the process. Such a person is doomed.

9. Choose to spend your time with the right people. I don’t mean that in the sense of the rich and the powerful, the movers and shakers of society. Whether they’re powerful or not, the best people to spend time with are those from whom you can learn most: the ones whose own lives have brought them joy and endless fulfillment. That means people who do what they love and love what they do. People who have become experts in life, thinking people, people with wide-open minds and wide-open hearts. Seek them out wherever you can. Listen to them. Never mind if they are no longer living. Read their books and emulate their largeness of spirit. Learn from them all, but don’t simply copy what they did in this world. What they did was right for them, but may not be right for you. What you need to use as models are their ways of thinking and responding to the challenges of the world; the process of their lives, not what it happened to contain.

10. Drop whatever is inconsistent with these principles. That means all activities that don’t move you forward towards what you value most; things that get in the way of learning; pursuits that waste time and dull your senses; and people who hold you back. You may sometimes have to be ruthless. Each of us has only one life. If you waste it, you don’t get another chance. Besides, if you have chosen your dreams and aspirations wisely, what you must leave behind by dropping what’s inconsistent with those dreams will not be worth worrying about anyway. Those who make bad choices find, too late, that they have abandoned things and people that meant more to them than whatever they gained in exchange. If that happens, you have truly reached one of life’s lowest points.

Grab Bag De-Clutter Part 2:

• Set aside a 30 minute chunk of time for reorganizing and de-cluttering. Set a timer on your cell phone, and don’t stop working or allow distractions to pull you away until the 30 minutes is up. Repeat regularly.

• If you haven’t touched it, worn it, looked at it, used it in the last 12 months, it’s a candidate for sell/give-away/throw-away.

Grab Bag Mouths of Babes:

Favorite quote from 11 year-old Birke Baehr

“We can either pay the farmer or we can pay the hospital”

Grab Bag Brain Game:

You’re a savvy detective, using your observational skills. You get 10 seconds to survey the crime scene, then you will see the scene again, but some items have been changed. See how many you can identify.

Grab Bag Funny Stuff:

It’s rough coming home from the vet’s office:

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Grab Bag Lonely $yber-Heart:

I’m not making this up…… there could be $10,000 in it for YOU…

“Chas” is a real, live 40 year-old San Francisco man in search of a wife.

Chas is witty. Chas is wise. But Chas is single.

To remedy his misfortune, he has decided to elicit the help of the internet, and all the potential matchmakers out there who might find his Cinderella.

Here’s how Chas explains it all on his “About” page at www.hookchasup.com:

What is this?

It’s simple. Introduce me to the girl I end up marrying, and I’ll give you ten grand.

Sounds kinda sketchy.

Fair enough. Basically, I work a lot and never had much luck with online dating. I figured, why not create a site where I’m the only guy.

Why $10,000?

If this helps me find a soulmate, it’ll be worth bazillions. But I don’t have bazillions. $10K seemed to say, “I’m serious but not insane.”

40 and still single? Hmm.

Thanks to a decade of “life coaching” and some insightful relationships, I can honestly say I’m ready to start a family. For realz.

Hit the site and read through the few pages Chas has decided to offer as a window into who he is… I find it funny, and oddly touching…. but maybe that’s just me.

Grab Bag Bag the Big C:

40 years ago President Nixon declared a war on cancer.

How’s that working for us?

Not so great. Sadly, only a few select cancer treatments have made some strides, but words like “cure” and “prevention” are virtually stalled in the discussion thus far. Total cancer rates have risen in those four decades, some dramatically ….. (hello, thyroid).

What really irkes me is that the mainstream medical community, as a whole, lacks the cojones to advocate getting serious about potential environmental exposure. Does it lack empirical evidence? Yes. Studies on these issues are increasing, but the subject is akin to an Escher drawing…. what are we looking at and where is it coming from??

On the other hand, can any research facility currently tell us what causes cancer? With very few exceptions, the answer is No.

So let’s get proactive while the guys and gals in the white coats untease this mammoth snarled mass.

In my “can’t hurt” scenario, your doctors would advocate reducing your exposure to at least SOME of the toxins lurking under your sink, in your fridge, and on your bathroom counter. I mean, why the heck not? There are cleaner, less toxic, and potentially less harmful alternatives.

I’ll be devil’s advocate for a moment…what if I’m wrong and that’s not it? What if we discover that cancer comes from, say, bug bites? Well, no harm done... will you suffer a terrible injustice or danger if you don’t eat hot dogs or you change your body lotion to a chemical-free variety?

The prosecution rests.

The list and links below are part of a larger and more comprehensive approach to the topic, found at PreventCancer.com, the website of the Prevent Cancer Coalition:

Cosmetics, foods, even milk may contain contaminants not listed on their labels. Find out who’s influencing U. S. product safety laws.

General Information

General Information

Milk: Banned in Europe
Beef: Banned in Europe
Dirty Dozen Consumer Products
Dirty Dozen Risk Factors for Breast Cancer

Cosmetics and Personal Care

Toxic Ingredients in the Majority of Cosmetics & Personal Care Products (from the 2009Toxic Beauty book)
Talcum Powder
Perfumes Can Be Toxic
Lice Rx-Shampoo (Lindane)
Diethanolamine(DEA) in Shampoo
Black Permanent Hair Dyes
Phthalates in Cosmetics
Cosmetics Fact Sheet

(I also hope you will look at THIS link which gives a great explanation of what to look for when shopping for cosmetics.)

Food and Beverages

Milk and Hormones
Meat and Hormones
Hotdogs and Nitrites
Food , Beverages, Pesticides
Food Irradiation

Household Products

Carcinogens at Home
Cleaning Products Risks
Insecticides: Scourge
Pesticides used at Home
Ingredients in Household Products
Safe Alternative Household Products

And here are 12 suggestions from Dr. Mercola that you can do right now to optimize your chances of dominating the cancer battle:

  1. Normalize your vitamin D levels with safe amounts of sun exposure. This works primarily by optimizing your vitamin D level. Ideally, monitor your vitamin D levels throughout the year.
  2. Control your insulin levels by limiting your intake of processed foods and sugars/fructose as much as possible.
  3. Get appropriate amounts of animal-based omega-3 fats.
  4. Get appropriate exercise. One of the primary reasons exercise works is that it drives your insulin levels down. Controlling insulin levels is one of the most powerful ways to reduce your cancer risks.
  5. Eat according to your nutritional type. The potent anti-cancer effects of this principle are very much underappreciated. When we treat cancer patients in our clinic this is one of the most powerful anti-cancer strategies we have.
  6. Have a tool to permanently erase the neurological short-circuiting that can activate cancer genes. Even the CDC states that 85 percent of disease is caused by emotions. It is likely that this factor may be more important than all the other physical ones listed here, so make sure this is addressed. My particular favorite tool for this purpose, as you may know, is the Emotional Freedom Technique.
  7. Only 25 percent of people eat enough vegetables, so by all means eat as many vegetables as you are comfortable with. Ideally, they should be fresh and organic. Cruciferous vegetables in particular have been identified as having potent anti-cancer properties. Remember that carb nutritional types may need up to 300 percent more vegetables than protein nutritional types.
  8. Maintain an ideal body weight.
  9. Get enough high-quality sleep.
  10. Reduce your exposure to environmental toxins like pesticides, household chemical cleaners, synthetic air fresheners and air pollution.
  11. Reduce your use of cell phones and other wireless technologies, and implement as many safety strategies as possible if/when you cannot avoid their use.
  12. Boil, poach or steam your foods, rather than frying or charbroiling them.

Grab Bag De-Clutter Part 1:

Spring cleaning? Did someone say spring cleaning? Admit it, the wintery cobwebs, the musty residue and the unnecessary clutter in your closets, drawers and corners is begging to be ousted and/or re-ordered.

Just two tips each week for the next three weeks should make it manageable.

1. • Ready to clean house on a room/closet/cupboard/set of drawers?? Snap a photo first. The “after” photo will be quite rewarding.

(Good heavens… who ARE these people? But I guess the “afters” do look better… I’ll bet you can do WAY better than this…)
















2. • Give each family member a covered bin (maybe laundry basket size?) in the garage or basement to keep treasured keepsakes. When it gets full, edit, or decide if a second bin is warranted.

Grab Bag 1st Dibs:

So those de-cluttering images were traumatic. On to yummy things to clutter up your empty closets….

When the economy blossoms this spring (maybe wishful thinking, but let’s put it out there…), and you’re in the market for, say,  a fabulous coffee table to MAKE your seating area shine, or a GORGEOUS vintage dress for your upcoming

39th birthday,

or perhaps a work of art to beautify your bungalow, there may be no better site than this mammoth “portal” called


“The Dibster” (we’re really good friends, in my own mind) is a gathering place for some of the finest purveyors of antiques, works of art, jewelry and vintage clothing. Register your email and a password and the prices will be revealed to you (in some cases, you’ll need to provide your own smelling salts).

Not everything is priced in the stratosphere, but everything IS unique and quite beautiful. AND.. you can search just store wares local to you (especially handy when looking for a set of dining room chairs… shipping gets a bit nasty when they come from, say, London to LA).

They ALSO profile up and coming talent and special exhibitions for fashion, jewelry, art and antiques as well.

FLASH…. FEEL GOOD MOMENT… nearly everything here is vintage/antique…. making you the ULTIMATE RECYCLER!


Grab Bag Better Eating Habits:

Real Food Has Curves, a new book written by Bruce Weinstein and Mark Scarbrough, offers a 7-step plan for weaning yourself off processed foods:

• Seek true satisfaction. Enjoy genuine flavors, rather than fat, sugar, and salt added to mask the metallic taste of chemical additives.

• Read labels wisely. You can find food with “real” ingredients in the supermarket if you read labels carefully.

• Relish what’s on your plate. Devote time solely to enjoying the pleasures of eating.

• Wean yourself off excess salt, fat, and sugar. You can also cook with smaller amounts of these ingredients by using natural substitutes like strong spices.

• Give your palate time to change. You’ll gradually lose your taste for excessively sweet and salty foods.

• Go for high-quality foods. Look for products that contain the least amount of processed ingredients.

• Treat yourself well by not skipping meals. Try eating three meals a day at fairly regular times, plus a mid-afternoon snack.

Grab Bag Brain Game:

What type of ghost are you? Type the words to eliminate the ghosts…. before they eliminate you…



Grab Bag Funny Stuff:

Some of you who have never visited a Walmart may think these photos are falsified, or at the very least a set-up. I am here to testify that, having some experience within the walls of a 203,000 square foot beauty of a Wal-Mart, these are TOTALLY believable. I suggest you enlarge the view so all captions will be readable… (but the images might be overwhelmingly disturbing in a larger dimension!) To enlarge, hold down the Apple (command) key on a Mac or the Control key  on a PC while hitting the + key.

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