Today was my Uncle Paul's funeral. Uncle Paul had worldly success, but it is so fascinating that when you die, no one cares about your worldly success. What mattered today was his influence on his family and friends. He embodies the Warnock name -- tall, intelligent, thick hair, strong personality, outsized work ethic, love of learning, and love of playing, especially outdoors. Driven, smart, firm in convictions. I can tell you that many of these traits come straight from Scotland, our ancestral home.
Paul was not my actual uncle, he was my grandfather's youngest brother, but he took on a larger role in my life after my grandpa died because Paul was the spitting image of my grandpa -- his twin, his double. He would walk into the room and me and my cousins would gasp because it looked and felt like Grandpa had come back from the grave. Everyone would cry and hug him. I told him several times that he would have to be my stand-in grandpa, and he indulged all of us. I don't know how to express what it felt like to have my dead grandfather walk into a room, in the form of Uncle Paul -- they looked that much alike. And their voices sounded alike. And Paul was as tall as me (6'4") so getting a hug from him was a special treat.
Aunt Helen has been bedridden for years and we all thought we were waiting for Helen to go, so imagine the shock when Uncle Paul died. My grandpa wore himself out taking care of my bedridden grandmother, and Uncle Paul did the same. Their fidelity to their wives is a bright example to me of the real definition of what it means to love someone.
Uncle Paul embodied the very best of the Warnock family name, and I hope to grow up to be like him. He was a deep thinker, a deep spiritualist, unafraid to ask questions, unafraid to make money and weld influence while passionate about doing good and lifting burdens. He understood Plato's Cave, what is meaningful, and what will eventually crumble to dust without meaning. Today I was reminded so strongly of my great-grandpa Irvin, Paul's father, and great-grandma Lexia and how their influence has come through generations now.
Thank you, Uncle Paul and Aunt Helen. I don't think you know how many people, including me, were quietly watching and studying your example.
A boxful of carrots, parsnips, beets and a random potato :)
Ada helping me pack the carrots
First we filled a couple boxes with loose, cheap sawdust.
Then we "planted" the carrots in it, and watered until damp.
We did this now, on Nov. 12, because the ground is going to start freezing this week, so it was time to either dig the carrots or cover them. Because I am doing a major garden renovation this fall, I needed to move the carrots out of the garden instead of covering them. Theses boxes have now been moved to shelves in the garage, where we can pop down and "shop" as needed all winter :)
Also in our garage "store" is a wheel barrel full of pumpkins and squash.
And a huge bag full of onions from the garden. So we should have good eating all winter, until it is time to start harvesting the greenhouse carrots, beets, and onions in springtime, as well as the springtime outdoor perennial onions. You can see all our vegetable varieties at SeedRenaissance.com. Happy winter!
A new genetically modified potato has been approved for use in the U.S. by the USDA.
Since the first GMO potato failed at market, this time they cleverly use fearmongering, saying it is GMO for public safety reasons, because potatoes are so dangerous. Very clever way to get another GMO approved so that another vegetable can be removed from the public domain. And this:
"Potatoes are the latest genetically engineered crop to get approval in the United States. Others include corn, soybeans, alfalfa, canola, sugar beets, certain types of yellow squash and zucchini."
And this: "The nonbruising characteristic of the Innate potato is similar to that of genetically engineered nonbrowning apples, which have not yet been approved for commercial growing by the Department of Agriculture."
Here is the full NYTimes article:
Tincture and herbs from Caleb's garden
Hands-on Herbal Medicine
Instructor: Caleb Warnock
Instructor: Caleb Warnock
$39 per person
6:30 p.m. Thursday Oct. 30 at Real Foods Market, 420 West 800 North Orem, Utah
6:30 p.m. Thursday Oct. 30 at Real Foods Market, 420 West 800 North Orem, Utah
Advance registration required. To register, call (801) 224-0585.
Students will take home medicinal herbs, provided by Caleb. Learn herbal treatment for coughs, colds, hives, sinus infections, asthma, flu, viral infection, bacterial infection, and more, including:
- medicinal preparations for immediate use
- medicinal preparations for later use
- apothecary combinations
- apothecary tools: flat pestle, tuning fork, creating troche for children and adults
- no-nonsense cautions and limitations: When is herbal medicine appropriate, when is it not?
-Each student will take home a guide booklet. You will learn how to use each of the following organic herbs:
- German chamomile
- echinacea root
- mallow root
Books by Caleb Warnock
Because of my speeches, demonstrations, and classes, many of you have asked me for information about how to make a homemade thermal oven that will do both small and large batches of homemade natural yeast bread or rolls.
Making or purchasing a thermal oven (no electricity or gas) allows you to raise one loaf of bread or more, up to ten loaves! Or 48 cinnamon rolls or dinner rolls. Or make homemade yogurt, cook thousands of recipes for dinner or lunch, or you can use your thermal oven as a chiller or travel freezer. Use it everyday, in emergencies, for preparedness, or for traveling.
Modern Use, Ancient Technology
A thermal oven is the cheapest, fastest, easiest and most reliable way to raise bread dough using natural yeast. Thermal ovens are the way bread dough had been raised for centuries! In fact, the word “oven” is a misnomer because thermal ovens also act as freezers and coolers, as you will see in a moment.
The basic concept of thermal oven cooking, chilling, or bread-dough raising is to trap heat. Centuries ago, thermal cooking was done by heating a pan over a fire and then wrapping the pan overnight in a feather or straw mattress. The mattress retained the heat, allowing the food to cook away from the fire once the pan was heated.
There are endless ways to design a modern thermal cooker, but I have created a booklet that will introduce you to Caleb Warnock’s Thermal Dough Proofer, which is the only design which allows you to inexpensively create a homemade thermal oven that will proof one loaf, two loaves, up to eight loaves of bread at one time, or two trays of cinnamon rolls or dinner rolls! This design was born of necessity. There is nothing else like it available! So I had to invent it :) It costs less than $20 to make, as of this writing.
For the best price on polystyrene filler beads, click here:
Two Cubic Foot Bean Bag Chair Single Refill Pack Pure Bead Stuffing (Free Shipping) Packaged and Shipped in a Bag
Hello America. Brace yourselves to be cussed out.
As parents and grandparents, we have a few clear-cut duties. One of them is to know the answer to this question: “My child is mostly likely to die of what?”
The medical condition that is most likely to torture and then kill you and your children as you age is Type 2 Diabetes. This clear and present danger is ignored at your peril.
The way to prevent Type 2 Diabetes is with fiber -- vegetables and naturally prepared grains.
"My husband doesn't like vegetables," you will whinge as you turn away. "Natural yeast might be hard. I'm busy."
Oh! Why didn't you say so earlier?! Run off on your merry way to the prepackaged foods aisle, then, little poppet. You are absolved of personal responsibility, and no natural consequences will hound you.
Aligning ourselves with reality, we have to admit that Americans are not likely to give up sugar, white flour, and soda, which are causing this plague. Even cutting down is difficult -- every office in this country is flooded with donuts and treats. There is more shelf space dedicated to candy and soda in your local grocery store than there is space for fresh vegetables -- by far. Why? Because the stores give space to what people want to buy.
Type 2 Diabetes is why today’s children are expected to be the first generation in history with a shorter lifespan than their parents -- read that twice.
We are choosing this disease. We are voting with our mouths.
Shockingly few Americans have any knowledge of how to stop the disease that is doing the most harm to our own children. Fiber is the answer.
Starches (white flour, rice, potatoes) are digested by the body exactly like sugar, meaning they spike the body’s glycemic index exactly like sugar. Over years, spikes in the glycemic index destroy the ability of our pancreas to produce insulin. The body must produce insulin to digest glucose (sugar).
Fiber slows the body’s digestion. Fiber is prebiotic, meaning it is the place where the good and necessary probiotic bacteria and fungi in our bodies live. Without both soluble and insoluble fiber, natural probiotics (bacteria and fungi) cannot colonize in our guts. Without fiber, our digestive system struggles and slowly breaks down. Our weakened bodies then become victim to all manner of auto-immune deficiencies which are normally staved off by healthy people. (For most people, being genetically predisposed to an autoimmune disorder simply means you will get the disease only if you are not healthy).
Making matters worse, we use “shock and awe” antibiotics which kill both what is bad for us and what is good for us -- and then we do not replenish our natural probiotics with cultured foods. In addition, when we do bother to put down our sodas to drink a glass of water, our water is chlorinated. Chlorine is put in water to kill flora and fauna. It does the same thing in our bodies. If you have any doubt about this, you can grow natural yeast side-by-side in purified water and tap water and see the difference for yourself.
To recap, a healthy gut is a busy metropolis of beneficial probiotic bacteria and fungi thriving on prebiotic soluble and insoluble fiber. Sugars, protein and carbohydrates are digested slowly, making us feel full while allowing the body to take what it needs. Because we digest slowly, there are no glycemic spikes. Our pancreas functions normally throughout life. We do not get Type 2 Diabetes. We are happy, healthy, and not morbidly obese. (Caution: Skinny people get Type 2 Diabetes at exactly the rate of fat people. It’s all about the gut. You can run 10 miles every day and still get Type 2 Diabetes.)
Our guts are not healthy. This is proven by the huge surge in Type 2 Diabetes.
Our guts are ghost towns. There are few good bacteria and yeasts, and little fiber for them to call home. Our fake-food diets move through us fast, not slow. This causes us to feel hungry instead of full, which in turn causes us to eat more fake food. We scorch our empty gut with glycemic-spiking sugar and starches, chlorinated water, and antibiotics. Then we develop Type 2 Diabetes, suffer, and die early.
Odds are, this is your future.
This is what awaits our children.
Vegetables can stop all this. Raw, cooked and cultured, vegetables are the answer. Grains prepared with natural yeast are the answer.
Now that you know the answer, there is just one question left -- will you be like most people and decide not to change your vote (by mouth) until after you or someone you love has been diagnosed? Or will you change now, so the diagnoses never appears and you and your children live happily ever after?
Vegetables and natural yeast. Or Type 2 Diabetes. Truth is easy. Truth is simple.
Yesterday I got this comment from a student of mine on Facebook:
“I have to put a plug in for a winter garden... Early to mid-August is the time to plant lettuce for a winter garden. Basically, you plant a fall garden and then around the end of October, you put a cold frame on top. The lettuce in the photo is growing under the cold frame pictured and covered with snow. I ate it in the fall, during the winter, and then it grew huge in the spring, and I had more than I could eat until mid-June when it went to seed. I will never plant lettuce in the spring again--just in my winter garden.”
This year’s Cold Frames Gardening Workshop will be available in my backyard, or online, just like last year. Also, you may purchase twin-wall polycarbonate for building cold frames at the bulk discount rate for a short time. Here are the details:
In Alpine, Utah:
Saturday, Aug. 16 2014 at 707 West 800 South Alpine 84004.
$99 by Aug. 1, $140 after Aug. 1
TO REGISTER go to http://bit.ly/1jYjIJN
Sign up by Aug. 1 and get the $39 Fall Gardening Special FOR FREE. (Egyptian Walking Onions may be limited) Everyone will take home a cold frame (4-feet by 2-feet)
-- or --
Class will begin Aug. 16.
$99 by Aug. 1, $140 after Aug. 1
TO REGISTER go to http://bit.ly/1oCKOpI
Sign up by Aug. 1 and get the $39 Fall Gardening Special FOR FREE. (Egyptian Walking Onions may be limited) Everyone will be mailed twin-wall polycarbonate to make a 2-foot by 4-foot cold frame.
This year’s classes, both online and in Alpine, include:
- No Nonsense Household Tips for Saving Money (This class will be emailed to you).
How to make the best, easiest bulk powder laundry soap, enough for more than 1,000 loads in 20 minutes at 1.8 cents a load! Save hundreds of dollars on shaving razors, dishwashing machine soap and much, much more!
- Backyard Herbal Infusions for Cold, Flu, Sinus & Asthma. (This class will be emailed to you)In this hands-on class, Caleb will teach you the best backyard herbal treatments. We will make and sample the herbal treatments, starting from scratch, and discuss which herbs to use to help which conditions. This class covers prevention and treatment.
- Forgotten Prepper: 15+ Essential, Simple Skills You Don’t Have. (This class will be emailed to you) Easy homemade garden hand soap, sanitation, and many other things every family should know for emergency preparedness and everyday use.
- Four Best Wild Edibles. (This class will be emailed to you). Each student will certify with Caleb their ability to individually recognize, harvest and prepare the four best backyard wild edibles.
- Fall and Winter Gardening With Cold Frame (This class will be emailed to you) Each participant will go home with at least $40 in seed for fall and winter gardening, with the latest information about the best autumn and winter varieties. Cold Frames -- Each student will go home with a cold frame that we will make in class, with information on how to use it and the seed you need to get started immediately.
- Q and A with Caleb
Caleb takes your questions via email.
This cold frame plastic can be purchased for pick up or mailing.
For pick up details, go to http://bit.ly/1qcj3Ck
For mailing, go to http://bit.ly/1uB2I0H
For months our family has been keeping private some pain. In gratitude, I want to share here, with the “hive mind” of Facebook and the internet, parts of a private message I shared with my family today.
In the night after the 2014 New Year arrived, I felt the strongest impression to write a letter, addressed to each of my six step-daughters and son-in-laws. Charmayne and I have had a very happy life in the past few years. But as the New Year arrived, I felt clearly “given to know” that that was about to change. I wrote the letter that follows, and over the next few weeks my wife and I discussed it. We decided to prepare ourselves, but not to share the letter with the kids at that time. Today, it feels clear to me that now is the time to share this letter. Here is what I wrote:
January 1, 2014
Dear Phronsie & John, Cassie, Mysti & Manny, Chelsie & Johnny, Amberlee & Rob, and Ariel & Trent,
I have something pressing on my mind. This letter is important to me.
When I married Charmayne, I had to figure out for myself how to fit into a family that had existed long before our marriage. Today, our family is stronger than it has ever been. But our family is changing, and so is the world. We are going to need each other more in 2014 than ever before. We are going to be called on to help each other. The world is going to continue to darken. We will need one another.
Defining a family is hard when a family is simple. Our family is not simple :) Each of you has a father, a mother, a Caleb, a Lorien. There are in-laws, religion, politics. I cleaned up Ariel’s throw-up in the middle of the night when she was a child, and helped Amberlee with her middle-school homework. Others of you were moved away to college by the time I showed up.
To me, there is no “step” between me and my grandchildren. I won’t have biological children. What a thrill it has been to have a role with these six grandkids.
Let me share a personal story.
When Xander was about three, he found in my truck a copy of Madonna’s “Erotica” album. The cover shows a man sucking Madonna’s toe. Xander looks it over and says simply, “Why is this man sucking on her toe?”
When we got home, I threw it in the outside trash can, with other things from a former life. I realized why I needed to change. I did not want to be responsible for introducing that morality to Xander.
Change is the purpose of life. All of us are working hard to be better people. At the end of life, only two things matter. 1) Were you honest? 2) Did you do good, or do harm, to those around you?
We have six and soon seven young people (and eventually many more) who will one day want to know, and deserve to know, the facts about some of the “questions” that accompany our complex family. We have three divorces to account for. Two of us stole cars before we had licenses. We have smokers in the extended family, drinkers, we have a marriage in the temple and many more out of the temple. We have Mormons, non-Mormons, and former Mormons. We have had drugs and pornography. We have diversity of race, religion, and politics. We have an ancestor who was a dance hall girl, another who shot someone. We have a Salem witch -- my personal favorite :)
Each of us has made decisions that will need and deserve to be explained one day to the rising generation. More importantly, all of us are changing.
I mention this as preamble to this question: As a family, what are we?
Are we a “broken” family? A “blended” family? The “remains” of a family following divorce?
I want to be clear that Charmayne and I did not know each other during our divorces but we were lucky to meet each other soon after. However we got to be “family” matters less than the fact that we are family. We need to circle around Xander, Conrad, Dominick, Ada, Zack, Cora, and Lott child #1, as well as those coming. Around each other, all the adults, too. The world is dark.
Each of us has known grief. Some of us have caused grief. I have my own knowledge of remorse and pain. I try now to prevent grief, not cause it. Can I make some suggestions?
-- Don’t keep secrets from your spouse. Secrets always come to light as grief. We have seen this in our family. We can choose to never see it again.
-- Our actions affect the people around us. We can lift or wound. Think, then act.
-- We are human and sometimes we will wound each other. Let’s forgive and be peaceable.
-- Where do you get advice? When a decision is important, talk. Husband and wife. Daughter and mother. You will make better decisions -- have fewer regrets -- if you talk to your loved one.
-- The little kids are watching, listening, and learning. We need to show these little kids how to be good people.
-- Figure out discernment, and use it. Study it. It means to develop strong judgement skills -- what is right, what is wrong, when to act, intervene, speak, spend, scold, or wait. We have seen examples, even recently, of people in our family who felt a decision was wrong and said and did nothing, only to regret it later. When you feel something is wrong -- take action!
-- Get out of debt. Financial turmoil is coming. Get out of debt. Get out of debt.
-- To the six girls -- never keep a secret from your mother. She is your best protection against the world. She has earned wisdom. How she prays for you! You have no idea how powerful her prayers are, and how often they are answered. Whatever your problems may be, talk to her.
-- Finally, forgive. Create peace. I’ve had run-ins with some of you. I’m sorry. I apologize. I am changing, Thank you for letting me change. Let us be peaceable and happy.
Charmayne and I are here to help. Let’s circle around each other. We love you.
So, today is July 13, 2014. Very soon after I wrote this Jan. 1 letter, we learned that Lott Baby #1 was in dire straits. No amniotic fluid was being produced. Experts said the baby had no kidneys. We were told to prepare for the baby to soon die in the womb. We were told the baby’s heart was severely enlarged. We contacted a funeral home about buying an infant casket, and discussed where to bury the baby. Dark days. Many, many tears. The little kids, who were so excited about Ariel’s baby, had to be told they were never going to be see the baby alive. More tears and difficult questions.
We had a family fast and we specifically did not try to counsel the Lord, but prayed for counsel, and for the Lord’s will to be done. We made clear that we hoped for a happy, healthy baby, and asked that we would be comforted. And we were.
Since the day of that fast, there has been nothing but good news for the baby.
Suddenly the baby had kidneys. The heart enlargement vanished. Amniotic fluid filled the womb. This morning Ariel delivered her baby, as yet to be named. How thrilling to seeing the baby breathing, crying, and eating in the hospital today! The word miracle is almost never used in its correct spiritual sense in 2014, but can we deny we have been given a miracle today?
Our prayers have been heard and answered.
Not all the darkness has been drained from our lives, but light has prevailed today, as it will in the end. I have personal spiritual work to do. We all do.
The suggestions I included in my Jan. 1 letter are more relevant today than they were seven months ago. Today I invite our family to ponder what I wrote in January, and what it means today. After meeting Ariel and Trent’s baby, do we need any more evidence of where to turn for light?
Be slow to doubt what has happened today. Be slow to doubt that prayers have been answered by a living God.
This will not be our last darkness. There is clear and present darkness brewing on the horizon surrounding our family which need not be named in public. Let me suggest anew -- no secrets from spouses, or your mother. Lift, don’t wound. Forgive. Examine the advice you seek and take. Ask yourself who inspired your thoughts. Show the little kids the light, not the dark. Eschew debt. Study discernment. Decide to be accountable. Do not lie to yourself. Choose the light. I am working to change. We all can change. And be grateful for what we have been given.
An animation of echinacea being pollinated.
Egyptian Walking Onions set bulbs at the top of the plant.
Dwarf Blue Siberian Kale, which self-seeds and produces two crops a year. Seed at SeedRenaissance.com.
Raspberries are in season!
Today I have been harvesting the winter wheat.
The summer apples are ripe.
Blackberries in bloom.
Vernal Red Orach going to seed.
Rare white strawberries.
Cilantro in bloom.
Lettuce starting to flower.
Pioneer Pink Eye Beans in flower.
Perennial Tripled Wheat tillering itself out beautifully :)