Sunday, November 29, 2009

Fly like an eagle.

The golden eagle is another one of Animal Tails endangered species organic t-shirts. Here's what the hang tag says that accompany each tee:
"I am call a Golden Eagle because I have a striking golden crown and nape. I'm sacred in some cultures and my feathers are central to many religious and spiritual customs, expecially amongst Native Americans. Mexico even made me their national bird.
There are only 420 pairs of us in Great Britain. We like mountains so live in the Scottish Highlands. A pair of Golden Eagles remains together for life. Our nests are eyries and we build a few in our territory, which can be up to 160 sq miles. I need this space for hunting. I have very good eye sight and can spot prey from a long distance. I swoop down and kill my dinner with my talons. I can kill a fox outright. My population is getting smaller because I sometimes eat livestock, so people poison and shoot me, but I'm only being a hungry Golden Eagle."

In America the main diet are rodents, rabbits, birds and reptiles. But in the 1950's ranchers perceived the eagle as a threat to their livestock. An estimated 50,000 eagles were destroyed by them. Thank heaven the Golden Eagle has been protected since 1963. The bald eagle has returned to enough numbers to remove them from the endangered list, although they are still protected. Hopefully, the Golden will have the same successful route.

It's no wonder there are many, many legends and lore about the eagle. There is something magical about all birds of prey.

The Golden Eagle is our current "Special" at

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Nothing to do on Thankgiving but to give thanks

Okay. It's a few days from Thanksgiving, my favorite holiday. Everyone is thinking about Christmas shopping. I'm usually thinking about the Thanksgiviving meal I will prepare and serve to my loved ones. I've had the menu made out weeks ago and the shopping all done. But not this year. Husband Ron told me to take a break for once.

It's daughter Stef's turn to host the Kramer side of her family for Thanksgiving day and mother-in-law Shirley invited us out for that day. I was planning on having Thanksgiving on the following Sunday but Ron said I don't have to work every holiday, one meal is enough. At the time I agreed. Why should I work every holiday.

Now that is a few days away, I realize it doesn't seem like a holiday. I miss it. I miss getting up early and sweating over the stove and counter all morning to serve my family. What's wrong with me?

I know. I feel blessed to have such a loving family sitting around the table enjoying each other company with the food I prepared for them. (Maybe it's an ego trip.) I never really enjoy the meal, just the company.

I should quit whining and enjoy the holiday for remembering our blessings, and I have many.

Take this day of the year and be thankful. I am.

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

The Blue Summit Experience

Last Tuesday evening, daughter Stef and I went to a holiday gathering at the Blue Summit store in Omaha, Nebraska. I think its official name is Blue Summit Global Experience. It's located at 4101 South 120th Street in Omaha.

Believe me, it is a wonderful experience. The gift store's mission is to "create hope, dignity and independence by supporting artisans from developing countries."  There was pottery, books, purses, jewelry, baskets, wall hangings, metal works; the list could go on and on. It was fascinating to wander around the store and read the stories of the artisans and marvel at the workmanship.

I picked up a few Christmas gifts and the vase in the picture for myself.

The next time you're in Omaha, stop in at Blue Summit and try the "experience"  for yourself.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

The Polar Bear

The week at the Special of the Day is the Polar Bear long sleeve organic cotton t-shirt from our "Animal Tails" collection. It's currently 40% off retail.

Let's talk about the polar bear. Everyone recognizes this wonder of the northern ice. I wonder how many kids have had a stuffed polar bear to sleep with at night. And for sure, the polar bear has become the symbol of global warning. Here's what the hang tag says on each of the tees and rompers about the Polar Bear:

"Now a few facts, I'm a brilliant swinner, 60 miles non-stop is OK for me. In fact I love water so much I will spend as much time in the water as on the ice, perhaps that's why I have the Latin name Ursus Maritimus, meaning Sea Bear. I also have partially webbed paws which help me along. As well as that, my paws are an impressive 30 cms across. With paws that big you would expect me to be pretty big too, well I am - actually I'm the largest land carnivore in the world. But despite my impressive statistics, I'm in serious trouble. Climate change and pollution is ruining my food supplies.
What can you do to help? Going organic is a great start to slowing down the pollution problem - you can't do better than an Animal Tails T-shirt with my picture on it! Another great idea is to get your parents to turn down the heating and start wearing a thermal vest - discover the the joys of wearing your own insulation just like me!!
Thank you."

If the Polar Bear is in trouble, so are many other of the smaller carnivores of the Artic. They scavenge the remains of the polar bear's kill for their survival. I know it's fairly unlikely any of us will ever see a polar bear in the wild, but I like to think of them always running free up north.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Organic Living

One of the meanings of  organic is "denoting a relation between elements of something such that they fit together harmoniously as necessary parts of a whole". So when I say organic or organic living, I think living harmoniously with the earth. That may not be academically correct, but it's the way I think; enriching yourself without harming the world. 

That being said; let me tell you about some of my favorite things on my iPod. (You didn't think that was where I was going, did you?)

I love, love, love music. I love, love, love my iPod. But here's the strange thing. When I'm walking the dogs with my iPod; I don't listen to music. I turn on to my free podcasts.

When you access your iTunes, please look at the podcasts. They are awesome. I'm a NPR junkie, so that's most of the  podcasts I download. My two favorites by far are "Wait, wait, don't tell me!" and "Selected Shorts".

"Wait,  wait, don't tell me" is a current events quiz show. I know. Sounds boring, doesn't it? Trust me. If you like wit and social comment, you'll love this show.

"Selected Shorts" is a program dedicated to the celebration of the short story. Two or three short stories are read by actors to a live audience. It is soooo entertaining. I especiality love the ones read by John Lithgow (you know him from "Third Rock from the Sun"). My all time favorite of his is "Indian Country".

Anything you are interested in, you will find a podcast.  Some of my other favorites are "This American Life", "The Pet Hour by Iams" (of course) and the Terri Gross interviews on "Fresh Aire".

Expand your horizans, think outside of the box, think "organically".  Maybe you'll find something to fit "harmoniously" with your life.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Oh look, a puppy!!!!

We all love puppies, don't we. The one in this picture, however, will never be in a pet shop window. These are African Wild Dogs, one of the endangered species on Rubi J's Animal Tails organic t-shirts.

I've been reading about them and, boy, have they ever been given a bum rap.  Sure, they're carnivores; but so are most of us. Not as magnificent looking as the lion or other big cats; they don't get equal press on the nature shows.

Here's what the hang tag that comes with each tee reads:

"Your domestic dogs are related to me. We're found only in Africa, especially in scrub savanna and other lightly wooded areas. Our coats are bespoke design as no two individuals have the same markings.

We hunt in packs and give a mean chase, catching 85% of our prey, poor deers! We look vicious so you would have thought that we howl like wolves, but in fact we chirp like birds when communicating. After a succussful hunt we go home and regurgitate meat for those who stayed behind.

The current estimate for remaining Wild Dogs is approximately 3000. Of these the majority live in the Selous Game Reserve in Tanzania.

Part of the profits of the T-shirt go towards AfriCat, who campaign for our protection."

Encourage your children to learn more about the African Wild Dog and why they are important to the eco-system. The African Wildlife Foundation has a great website: Also, read more about the Africat Foundation at

You can see why grandson Cole thinks they're "awesome".

Rubi J's current special is 40% off the African Wild Dog tee. Have a look:

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


Look up "gratitude" in the dictionary or thesaurus and you will find "appreciation".

I beg to differ.

Gratitude goes so much deeper. I appreciate a fine wine, a superb meal or a delightful movie. Gratitude moves  my body and soul.

I have not always been aware of daily gratitude; but for the last 12 years that how I end my day, expressing gratitude. Try it; you'll like it. You will be amazed how your problems are minimized and the living world is a good place.

Try this for a week. Get into bed at night, either on a notepad or in your head, list the things you are grateful for this day, and this day only; doesn't make any difference how big or small. It could be a kid's giggle; just remember it.  I swear, in one week, you will become a more centered person with this wonderful universe.

So, how do I know this? My husband and I have lived this. Over 12 years ago, Ron and I were faced with our only child's death. She beat the odds and we have her today. It's still too painful for us to talk to each about; but we have our "code". We just say "we're lucky people" and we know. 

Don't go what we went through to discover how wonderful life is. Start your "gratitude" journal today.

Our daughter, Stef, and her daughter, Alex, who is 12 years old.