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Bokashi composting is an anaerobic process that can reduce food scraps -- including meat and dairy as well as vegetables -- into highly acidic "pre-compost." Normally this is dug into a garden, but it shouldn't come into direct contact with plant roots immediately. This made me think of two other applications.

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A friend tipped me to this excellent discussion about gossip in Judaism, when it is or is not permissible and why.  While gentiles are not bound by Jewish law as Jews are, it remains a very useful set of guidelines, and following them -- even if you cherrypick your favorites -- would prevent a lot of headaches.
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While doing research, I came across these patterns for making rag toys.  I had a lot of homemade toys when I was little, and I loved them.



And in case you want to dress them ...



EDIT 2/8/19: [personal profile] pantha has reminded me of this awesome pattern for a giant squid pillow.  Very popular in Kraken.  :D

ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This article mentions some coping methods for people who wear binders. People have used Tumblr and other social media to remind wearers to check their breathing once an hour. If you wear binders but don't use those venues, you can substitute any other reminder service or app that you like, to remind you to check your breathing or do a breath meditation at your preferred frequency. (Yes, binders have risks like asphyxiation, overheating, and rib injuries. O_O) Practice safe binding and take care of the body you have.

Setting Up Instagram Reminders Via Buffer

Set Reminders on Facebook

10 Best Reminder Apps for iPhone, Android, and Windows

You may need to hunt around to find a level of body awareness and breath work that feels comfortable for you, which is often a challenge with body dysphoria, so I included some abstract instructions that don't point to your body. Other folks need the guidance to check in that they are safe, because it is hard for them to connect with their body.

30-second Calm Breathe Bubble

1-minute Triangle Breathing

1-minute Basic Breath Meditation

3-minute Breathing Space

EDIT 2/7/19: [personal profile] eseme recommends The Breathing App.

When you take your binder off, it helps to focus on your breathing for a longer time if you can.

10-minute Triangle Breathing

10 Minute Awareness of Breath Mindfulness Meditation

It also helps to do some gentle stretches to open your chest after compression. Choose from Yoga, Tai Chi, and various other styles. Do what works for you.

6-minute Side Body Stretches for Deeper Breath

7-minute Upper Back and Chest Stretches

8-minute Tai Chi Breathing Exercises

18-minute Coordinate Movement + Breathing Tai Chi

30-minute Breathe & Flow Yoga

For that matter, if you wear a bra, corset, necktie, button collar, choker, or anything else that can restrict your breathing then these precautions may prove useful. Binders are just one of the most notorious garments for causing problems, not the only risk.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
While searching for something else, I stumbled across this excellent guide to constructing a safe, fun trip on hallucinogens.

By the way, this is a supervillain game show in Terramagne:

Honestly, I would watch a game show where people have to drop acid and perform mundane tasks like buttoning a shirt, refilling an ice cube tray, putting a fitted sheet on a bed, etc.

Fruit Walls

Feb. 4th, 2019 01:23 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
A friend tipped me to this fascinating article about fruit walls, which can be bare or assisted with glass.  It is an excellent way of growing food in places with cold or windy weather.

ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
I made this tonight as my January new recipe. It occurred to me that I could use the George Foreman grill to cook fruits or vegetables, not just meats. :D Success!

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The Repair Café is a network of places where you can take broken stuff and fix it for free. This is not limited to geekery with machines. You can take clothes, toys, all kinds of stuff.  Find one near you or start one.  Sadly, the only two in Illinois are right next to each other, in Chicago and Oak Park.  :(

I will add, not knowing that things can be fixed and not knowing how to fix them are only two thirds of the problem -- the ones you can influence yourself.  A much more serious issue is that most modern products are not designed to be fixable at all, only thrown away the moment anything breaks.  They are made so covers won't come off, so broken areas can't be separated from whole ones.  That's vicious, and it's also infantalizing, because it prevents people from doing things for themselves.

So another part of this movement is to search out and buy products that can be repaired.  For a brilliant example, look at 3D archery targets.  These things take a beating.  The core, and sometimes the whole midsection, can be replaced with spare parts.  For some targets and companies, all the parts can be replaced.  You can even buy repair kits with foam, paint, etc. for smaller touchups.  That's fantastic, because these things are really expensive; repairing them saves a lot of money and resources.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Here's a brilliant article about why so many modern buildings are hideous and why that's a serious problem we need to fix. 

Our environment affects our moodBeautiful surroundings make people happier.  Ugly surroundings make people unhappy.  While many factors influence mood, it is easier to be happy in a beautiful place than in an ugly place.  Here are some ways to improve your mood by beautifying your home.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
It occurs to me that the government shutdown offers an unparalleled opportunity to reach out to people who might decide that the Republican Party does not have their best interest at heart.  If you belong to a political party which upholds strong labor values such as a living wage, or a strong social safety net such as affordable housing, consider raising funds and distributing them to people directly harmed by the shutdown -- no strings attached, just let them know who you are and your platform on the topic.  These are the most and least affected states.  

After all, this is supposed to be a government of the people, by the people, for the people.  If the elected officials can't be arsed to do their jobs, we can always do it for them.  And that could generate some very interesting attention.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Identifying animal tracks is fun.  I still have the habit, despite not being a hunter in this life.  I always step around them, not on them.  Over the last week or so I have observed the following tracks in our yard:

* cottontail rabbit
* fox squirrel (tracks are similar to these gray squirrel tracks)
* birds (likely including mourning dove, sparrow, dark-eyed junco, and cardinal)
* cat
* canine (dog, fox, or coyote; probably coyote from the size) 
* human
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem came out of the January 8, 2019 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] technoshaman. It also fills a square in my 12-31-18 card for the Untranslatable Words Bingo fest: "Fernweh (German): Feeling homesick for a place you have never been to." This poem has been sponsored by [personal profile] janetmiles. It is meta for the series Polychrome Heroics.

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Welcome to those of you coming to Dreamwidth from Tumblr. I have found a few communities that may help you connect with people here.

[community profile] the_great_tumblr_purge is especially for people moving to Dreamwidth so you can find folks you knew on Tumblr.

[community profile] tumblrmigration has some resources on how to make the move effectively and get the hang of DW.

Friending communities help you find new people:

[community profile] addme covers everything.

[community profile] addme_fandom is for all fandoms.

[community profile] startrek_add_me is for fans of the Star Trek mythos.

[community profile] add_a_writer connects writers with other writers, and gives readers a place to find new writers to follow.

If you were using Tumblr for inspiration and need a replacement muse, consider:

[community profile] allbingo supports any kind of creative bingo. A new thematic fest appears each month. You can play a public card, make your own, or use one from an outside event.

[community profile] crowdfunding is for creators and consumers of cyberfunded creativity. Watch for the mid-month Creative Jam where you can leave or claim prompts.

If you miss the pretty pictures, try:

[community profile] shutterspeed offers photography prompts.

[community profile] picture_prompt_fun invites people to write stories from pictures.

[community profile] photocons posts icons made from photographs. Get some 100x100 user icons here!

[community profile] solitude_in_sight has photos without people.

[community profile] drawesome is a fanart community.

[community profile] artists is a community for art creators and lovers.

[community profile] graphics is an all-purpose visual art community.

If you wish to copy this list, or use it as inspiration to make you own, by all means do so. Helping Tumblr refugees feel more welcome, and making communities more active, will benefit everyone.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 Here's a good article about time and place in fiction. That's not a complete list of aspects, but it's a good start.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)

Day 12

In your own space, create your own challenge. Leave a comment in this post saying you did it. Include a link to your post if you feel comfortable doing so.

Storytelling can change the world. Sometimes it's little stuff, other times big stuff. I credit fanfic with changing the public perception of homosexuality from something unspeakable to something cute.

Judaism has a tradition called tikkun olam, or world repair. It's all about making the world a better place. Everyone is responsible not just for keeping it good shape and avoiding actions that would harm it, but for adding to the beauty and functionality in some meaningful way. You don't have to be Jewish -- I'm not -- to grasp the usefulness of this phrase. It's very popular among my fans. So I'm making this my challenge for today...

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In today's fragmented world, people can improve it by reaching out to each other. Here are some ideas for building community in your neighborhood.

Hang out on your porch or in your front yard. It’s hard to get to know your neighbors if you don’t ever see them. Just by being out in front of your house you can give off a welcoming vibe that encourages interaction. If I am out in front, especially with the kiddos, every neighbor who walks by, even those I don’t know who may live many blocks away, still smiles and says hello.

Notice that infrastructure matters. A neighborhood where most or all of the houses have front porches will support community better than one with all garages in front. A pretty yard that's open to the sidewalk is more welcoming than a tall fence or hedges. These features rely a lot on the quality of citizens -- in bad neighborhoods, the houses look like fortresses.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)

Day 11

In your own space, talk about your creative process(es) — anything from the initial inspiration to how you feel after something’s done. Do you struggle with motivation or is it a smooth process? Do you have any tricks up your sleeve to pull out when a fanwork isn’t cooperating? What is your level of planning to pantsing/winging it? Leave a comment in this post saying you did it. Include a link to your post if you feel comfortable doing so.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Another [community profile] snowflake_challenge wish was for ways to reduce feeling shame over liking things.

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February 2019

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