March 2015

 New Paradigm Planet Cover3/25

Wow, this has been a big month for me!

Ok, the first thing I want to write about is my electricity bill. I got my first electricity bill for the studio apartment I live in. For electricity for the past couple months, the bill was only $35! An advertisement comes with the bill saying that Seattle City Light will give you a free LED light bulb. The advertisement literally says “Step 1: Install. Step 2: Wait 20 Years. Step 3: Replace.” Whoa! That’s some new world kind of advertising right here. That’s not really why I’ve had such a big month though.

I’ve published a book! I had been writing it since last year but was inspired to finish and publish it. It is about an imaginary planet I had inside my head starting from the time I was 9 years old. I share this vision of this planet in hopes that it will inspire others to create a better life on our planet. Oh yes, and I do mention Dancing Rabbit in the book. Either by clicking on the image or going to www.newparadigmplanet.com, you too can have a copy of this lovely piece of my essence. If you read the book and provide feedback by May 1, 2015, I’ll send you another copy of the public release edition. If this has peaked your interest, you can find more info on the website.

I have also made a decision to release my membership at Dancing Rabbit in June. Part of my heart wants to cry, and there are oh so many complex reasons pulling me towards either direction, but I think the river of my life is flowing in Seattle, at least for now. I do plan to come back to visit, at least once per year, and I’ll be back in June for a week to collect my things. Some of the reasons are the eco consciousness of the mainstream and the lightening speed at which it is growing into greater ecological awareness in this city. I think the main reason though that tipped my decision to stay in Seattle is that I would like to get my book into major bookstores here and give workshops or go to events that can promote me as an author and life improvement coach. This may be easier to do in a city than in Missouri over the internet and phone. I’ve found that in person connection face to face with many people is very effective, and I can do this in Seattle with hundreds of people without having to go on some kind of tour. For now, I am open to the adventure of life that I’m having in Seattle, and I have so much love for all the people of DR and the wonderful, life enriching time I’ve spent there.

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February 2015

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2/15

Within the past couple months since the time I started looking at this studio I live in, a building has gone up next door- LEED A-Pod-Ments. It’s a building full of LEED built studio apartments. New LEED certified living quarters seems to be a trend that is quickly popping up in my neighborhood. Lots of old restaurants or businesses I used to know have moved down the street or gone away with large “Proposed Land Use Action” boards now decorating the walls, about to be turned into high rise green built living quarters with retail at the bottom. I doubt any of them have a bathtub though so I won’t be moving anytime soon.

I plugged the tub when taking a shower so I could see how much water I used compared to taking a bath. 2 showers = 1 bath, for me anyway. Considering I still practice the Rabbit average of 1 or 2 showers per week, I don’t mind a good healing bath once in a while.

During my First Aid training for my new job, I stumbled upon the parking lot of the community center where the training was held. I just had to stop and stare at the juxtaposition of this old vine covered parking lot full of art and graffiti with two electric car charging stations in the corner.

I also discovered a store for back yard farmers on a preschool field trip, The Grange. We took the kiddos to see the chickens, ducks, and rabbits, but that place is for farms in the middle of the city. It was pretty cool.

I found a stand at the Farmer’s Market with a giant sign that said “Micro Greens.” It peaked my curiosity for what kind of new green trend this might be. After chatting with the guy I now understand that there is a giant warehouse in West Seattle, filled floor to ceiling with a “vertical farm,” growing these “micro greens” using aeroponics and hydroponics, and supplying many of the large Seattle restaurants with greens. Basically they are urban farmed baby herbs and veggies, grown year round using mist and LED lights. Whaaaat!!? The company of Farmbox is magical.

I went into the Thrive cafe yesterday for the first time in over 4 years to drop off a flyer for my upcoming workshop. They are now growing their own greens right in the restaurant using hydroponics.

Soon I’ll be giving a workshop at a holistic bookstore. The workshop is called “Become Your Own Genie!” where I teach people to make all their wishes come true. With my new life coaching practice I help people heal heartache in Love and Abundance so they can be more empowered creationary humans in the world. One of my holistic teachers advises us not to be hypocrites in our holistic business, like don’t be Martha Stewart who gets caught by a chef binge eating at a restaurant. Sometimes I wonder if helping people build their wealth and abundance along with my frequent dumpster diving adventures is the kind of hypocritical activity I’ve been advised against. I can’t help but rescue perfectly good food from moral injustice while filling my fridge with the abundance of sustenance, even if I were a 6 or 7 figure earner. Between the food waste at work and all the mostly organic produce I’ve rescued, I’ve been able to eat for free so far this month.

Since the monetary economy of this land of Seattle is so differently askew from Rabbit Land, I’ve started keeping a spread sheet of my monetary income and expenses, including all the times I’ve gotten food for free, so I can get a good bearing of what my money and abundance is doing in this city. I thought perhaps I’d be spending $250 per month on food, but thus far I’ve only spent a tiny fraction on edible luxuries, like $5 on rose water which I’ll try in an experimental batch of Kombucha to go along with some rose black tea I have.

I’m now adopting monetary behavior I never had when I lived in the city before, back when I was still trapped in my illusionary notions of lack and scarcity, back when I went around thinking about how expensive things were instead of appreciating their real value. Last month I only spent $20 in the entertainment category, I thought it would be more fulfilling for my heart and soul to have more of that in my life. This month I gave myself a birthday present of a $110 Ticket to see Cirque De Soleil’s Kurios. Keeping a spread sheet really helps put things in perspective when it comes to abundance.

A friend recently told me about a concept called “Transition Towns.” She said Seattle seems to be on it’s way to becoming a “transition town.” In basic terms she described it as a town that has the eco awareness capabilities to survive if shit hits the fan. It reminded me of the many community pea patches that dot the city and supportive organizations like City Fruit that has a database map of all the registered fruit trees in Seattle. It’s comforting to have companionship with the notion that this city would probably still be pretty awesome even if “shit hit the fan.” Rabbit Land is pretty awesome too and if “shit hit the fan” I’m sure it’d be quite a different reality to share it with 600,000+ people rather than 70.

January 2015

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Well, a full time job and my own apartment is not something I’ve ever had the pleasure of having, believe it or not. I figured I might as well try it out for several months before I make a decision if it is right for me or if Rabbit Land is better.

This month’s gallery features some interesting eco conscious gems from the city: An all vegan grocery store, a “rain wise” yard, carpet mulch downtown, compostable pet poo bag dispenser, the “Sensational Saver Kit,” and the Footprint Apartments map. While looking for a studio apartment I found there are 12 properties in Seattle called the “Footprint Apartments” that are designed to lower your carbon footprint, very interesting. Their adds can be found amongst the adds for other “micro-studios” which are about 200 sq ft or less. I didn’t rent a footprint, but I found a nice micro-studio close to work.

My studio is about 200 sq ft, including the bathroom. There is a shared kitchen across the hall. I have my own bathroom with a bathtub and my own refrigerator! Oh my gosh so exciting! And what is more exciting is that I can afford it. I work a 10 minute walk from my studio. I won’t be riding in a bus or a car for at least a week! When I came to look at the place, I asked the landlord if there was compost. He said, “Not right at the moment, but we are going to start composting in the next few days. I have the cans downstairs, but I have to go get the right bags. The city is going to start charging a fine to all apartment complexes that don’t compost, so we’ll have compost by the time you move in.” The city is going to start charging a Fine to all apartment complexes that don’t compost!!! and the cans are all nicely labeled with what goes into each. “No napkins, paper towels, pizza boxes, or used compostable to-go food containers in the trash. They all go into the compost along with all the other food waste,” read a reminder email I received today from the landlord to all units in my building.

I found a lovely full time job at a co-op preschool! What!? I work at a co-op! It’s perfect for a little Rabbit like me. It is owned and run by the parents and families that bring their children to the preschool. The parents help out at the preschool by doing things like cleaning the classrooms, purchasing the food, web mastering, and working in the admin office. The committee that makes the decisions is called the “steering committee,” I very much like that name for the decision making body. We eat all organic and non-gmo food at “The Co-op” and dietary preferences vary from no dairy and no gluten kids and so fourth. It’s a peanut free environment so we eat almond butter and sunflower butter instead. I had not heard of sunflower butter. Every day the kids eat a gourmet snack in the afternoon. The first day I came for the interview they were having squash pasta for snack, I was flabbergasted. The children aren’t allowed to bring cake or sugary desserts for their birthday parties either so they bring things like chia pudding. Oh goodness, 2015, these are the days when even the Cookie Monster might stop eating cookies all together unless they are gluten free, vegan, and sweetened with stevia. It’s a community oriented, eco and health conscious place to spend 40 hrs per week. Accredited preschools are pretty rigorous in terms of health and cleanly standards of course, so they are not allowed to re-serve any leftovers.

Who gets to take home left over gourmet snacks from “The Co-op?” SunGee! Well of course no one really calls me that here, but I’ve found that when I talk to myself, I still call myself that. I spilled a little water in the kitchen the other day and told myself, “SunGee should be more careful.” In terms of food, there is also a food bank in the building below the preschool. Sometimes I like to look through the food bank’s food waste out back. You’d be amazed at what you’d find! Today’s catch is an organic Delicata squash with one rotten spot, an organic potato with a couple scratches, an organic orange with some spots on the peel, and an organic pear with one bruise. There is more waste produce than I could ever carry home, and from the food bank no less. Between preschool snack food waste and food bank food waste, I’ve been able to eat lunch and dinner for free for the past three days. I usually eat a green smoothie for breakfast though, which I did buy ingredients for. This week I’ve spent about $10 on breakfast smoothie food. Organic veggies are pretty cheap at Trader Joe’s and even then it was gift certificate money from a nice Christmas present. Besides the nearby Trader Joe’s and Safeway, there is also a farmer’s market every Saturday one block from my studio, all within a 15 min walk, and a PCC and a giant Whole Foods a 10 min bus ride away. For some household items there is a dollar store and a Goodwill in walking distance, but I don’t think I’d want to eat any of the food in the dollar store’s food section. I’ve taken to a new years resolution for the next few months for health reasons, and I’ve decided to try a diet of mostly vegetables, some fruits, some nuts, and of course shiitake mushrooms. I miss my 40 logs, but I bought a mushroom growing kit at the farmer’s market. No refined sugar, no processed food, no or very low gluten and grains, rarely meat and dairy and only if it is happy meat- raw and grass fed small animal like goat milk or lamb or fish maybe once per month. No cow and no pig. I think a diet like this for less than $25 per week within a 15 min walking distance would be impossible in Rabbit Land at this time of year, but for a “bottom feeder” like me, it is doable in my situation in the city. My mother endearingly calls me a “bottom feeder” because I eat, well, what falls to the bottom from the big fish up top and I am more wealthy and healthy than ever. I don’t even go to the food bank, I just look in their waste food. Although my co-worker says I could go to the food bank if I wanted to, you don’t need to show anything except a piece of ID and a piece of mail. Preschool teachers are probably considered low income in a high economy city like Seattle, but I feel like a queen making more than triple what my yearly income was in Rabbit Land. So far, I think I’ll buy my food other than the treasures I find out back, there is no long line at the food bank trash. Lol!

I share my kitchen with about 6 or 8 other units, and it’s a bit interesting to share in a city where people keep to themselves. I thought about putting up a notice about starting a dinner co-op, but I don’t think that would work for this lifestyle and other people’s eating habits and schedule. They probably think I am either an alien from another culture or some gourmet chef when they look at me cutting up my organic Delicata squash and potatoes as they briefly appear in the kitchen to remove their ready bake pizzas or pot pies from the oven or to use the microwave. I won’t tell them my organic healthy food was from the garbage can full of produce.