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Believe it or not!
There are lots of people out there that can make impressive web pages showing anything imaginable…
You can save the world if you just listen to them…. or maybe not… but what does it matter if you CARE.

   Just caring is worth so much…. and it’s popular too!



Gott Sei Danke

Family is the only thing that goes with you beyond…
everything in this world can be taken in an instant….
but when you yourself leave…
you know you will see loved ones,
and will see the ones you leave behind again…
that’s the stuff that really matters.
Love is the thread that ties these worlds together…
love pulls you along from this to the next…
the net of God is loosely woven…
it covers all creation…
it passes easily everywhere without snagging….
like the tide it rushes in and out and nothing can escape its weave….
and He pulls in all He chooses… when He wishes….

Gott Sei Danke

A socially-Conscious Holiday Greeting

I saw this posted somewhere and did not find out who came up with it, but thought it is so clever that I’d go ahead and post it here. I mean no copyright infringement if it is applicable. If this is your writing, and you wish it removed or accredited, let me know.



    Please accept with no obligation, implied or implicit, my best wishes for an environmentally conscious, socially responsible, low-stress, non-addictive, gender-neutral celebration of the winter solstice holiday, practiced within the most enjoyable traditions of the religious persuasion of your choice, or secular practices of your choice, with respect for the religious/secular persuasion and/or traditions of others, or their choice not to practice religious or secular traditions at all.


    I also wish you a fiscally successful, personally fulfilling and medically uncomplicated recognition of the onset of the generally accepted calendar year 2010, but not without due respect for the calendars of choice of other cultures whose contributions to society have helped make America great. Not to imply that America is necessarily greater than any other country nor the only America in the Western Hemisphere . Also, this wish is made without regard to the race, creed, color, age, physical ability, religious faith or sexual preference of the wishee.


    By accepting these greetings, you are accepting the aforementioned terms as stated.


    This greeting is not subject to clarification or withdrawal. It is freely transferable with no alteration to the original greeting. It implies no promise by the wisher to actually implement any of the wishes for herself/himself/others, and is void where prohibited by law and is revocable at the sole discretion of the wisher. This wish is warranted to perform as expected within the usual application of good tidings for a period of one year or until the issuance of a subsequent holiday greeting, whichever comes first, and warranty is limited to replacement of this wish or issuance of a new wish at the sole discretion of the wisher.

Right Now!



‘Right Now’
~Van Halen~

Don’t wanna wait ’til tomorrow
Why put it off another day?
One by one, little problems
Build up, and stand in our way.


One step ahead, one step behind it
Now ya gotta run to get even
Make future plans I’ll dream about yesterday,
Come on turn, turn this thing around

(Right now) Hey! It’s your tomorrow
(Right now) Come on, it’s everything
(Right now) Catch your magic moment
Do it right here and now
It means everything


Miss a beat, you lose a rhythm
And nothin’ falls into place. Only missed by a fraction
Slipped a little off your pace.


The more things you get, the more you want
Just trade in one for another
Workin’ so hard to make it easy
Whoa, got to turn.
Come on, turn this thing around

(Right now) Hey, it’s your tomorrow
(Right now) Come on, it’s everything
(Right now) catch that magic moment
Do it right here and now
It means everything


  Catch the magic in each and every day. If you did something good, the day is a success.  But today won’t wait around for you till tomorrow…. in the end, we see the time rushing up to us like a huge wave…. and each moment we dawdle, the wave continues to us…. don’t watch time or the wave…. know they come, but timing is crucial… turn from it, and release yourself to the power, letting it take you along the current… surrender completely and embrace perfect peace.  When you feel it slipping under you, raising you up it’s time to stand… and if done well you go from one world to the next… from water to sand… from this life to another on the wave of time. But you can’t stop the wave…. it is blown across the galaxy of time on the winds that God creates…. and there’s no fighting it.. although occasionally some get spit out in the churning and tell us of the waves… I once saw the wave glisten and shine and roar as it passed by for another…. and it changed my life.

Young man reaching for the sky

Hold onto Restraint, remember always to have compassion. No matter how great you are, no matter how powerful and cunning, and quick you are, You will still find compassion to be your greatest ally.

   Blessed are the mercifull, for they will receive mercy

   I’m brought to smile often at a memory of a trip I made to the market, a young man in his twenties was with his parents or grandparents. He was mentally disabled, and strode through the market with the simplicity and wonder of a child. He reached his hands up to the lights as a child will to the stars. His face had the radiant glow of a saint, and his loving caregivers indulged his whims. They strode the market with him, holding hands, loving and adaptable to his mind. They showed no shame of him, and he in his simplicity walked through the market happy in his ignorance. Looking through his eyes at a new world, one he had never seen before, until he recognized a food he loved, then he asked for it.

   There was something about his happy countenance that thrilled me, this is the essence of humanity itself, stripped of all indulgences, ego, and aspirations. This young man looks for nothing out of life, he lives from one moment to the next. And his caregivers provide all for him, and will love him to the end of their days.

   This is the way I see God providing for us in Paradise, we will not need to worry about anything, all will be taken care of by a loving and benevolent Master. But this is not the way of this fallen world. Although the world is beautiful it is also a harsh and nasty place, full of killing and dying. All things destroy something in order to live, from the smallest paramycium living on detritus on the forest floor, to the lion killing a fawn to eat. But one day the lion will lay down with the lamb, and the Shepard will watch over them all. But in this life this young man will be provided for by the loving couple until their demise, then perhaps some others will watch over him, and someday I may see him in his old age, walking through the market with the same look of wonder in his eyes, hands reaching to the sky.

   From the Gospel of Jesus Christ

   Ask and it will be given, seek and you will find,
   knock and the door will be opened.
   For everyone who asks recieves, and he who seeks finds,
   and to all who knock, the door will be opened.
   What man among you when his son asks for bread would give him a stone?
   And when he asks for a fish would give him a snake?
   If you then who are imperfect know how to give good gifts to your children,
   how much more will your Father
   who is perfect give good things to those who ask him?
   Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about what you will eat,
   or what you will wear, isn’t your life more than it’s food?
   And your body more than it’s clothing?
   Look at the birds of the sky, they neither sow nor reap,
   nor gather into barns, yet God feeds them.

   Which of you by thinking can add a day to his life?
   And why do you worry about clothing?
   Consider the lillies of the field, how they grow,
   they neither toil nor spin, and yet I tell you
   that not even Solomon in all his glory was robed like one of these.
   Therefore if God so clothes the grass that grows in the field today,
   and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, won’t he all the more clothe you?

   So don’t worry about these things and say ‘what will we eat, and what will we wear’,
   for that is what the gentiles seek,
   and your Father knows that you need these things, but first seek the Kingdom of God.
   And these things will be given to you as well.

Don’t turn down the ‘copter


~James Taylor~
‘Fire and Rain’


Won’t you look down upon me, Jesus?
You gotta help me make a stand.
You just got to see me,
Through another day.
My body’s achin’,
And my time is at hand.
And I won’t make it,
Any other way I’ve seen fire and I’ve seen rain,
I’ve seen sunny days,
That I thought would never end.
I’ve seen lonely times,
When I could not find a friend.
But I always thought that I’d see you again.

Been walkin’ my mind to an easy time,
My back turned towards the sun.
Lord knows, when the cold wind blows,
It’ll turn your head around.
Well, there’s hours of time on the telephone line,
To talk about things to come.
Sweet dreams and flyin’ machines,
In pieces on the ground.


   Faith is something to hold fast onto.

  But also keep your eyes and mind open…

     remember the joke about the fellow who was told to evacuate because the flood was coming…
he said he put his faith in God who would tell him what to do…
   Then the flood came, and a boat pulled up to his second floor window he was looking out of….
he told them to go away because God would protect him….
   Later he was on the roof because the entire house was flooded, the helicopter hovered over him,
but he refused their help…

   When he drowned and went to heaven, he was angry at God who did nothing to help him….

   God said “But I sent the police to evacuate you, then a boat and a helicopter to rescue you,
but you turned my help aside each time”.

  Via con Dios Amigos



‘Good Morning Weathercock’

Good Morning Kokapelli

‘Good Morning Weathercock’
~Ian Anderson~

Good morning Weathercock, how did you fare last night?
Did the cold wind bite you, did you stand up to the fright?
When the leaves spin from October, and whip around your tail;
Did you shake from the blast,  did you shiver through the gale?


Give us direction; the best of goodwill,
Put us in touch with your fair winds.
Sing to us softly, hum evening’s song
Tell us what the blacksmith has done for you.

Kokapelli in our front yard

Kokapelli in our front yard

Kokapelli, the Zuni/Hopi fertility deity has a presence in our garden.
Kokapelli is also associated with chasing away the Winter,
and bringing in the Spring.

It is a good thing to remember that spring will come again,
even as we settle into the coming winter.

But Lord, we need the winter and some rain,
Just please, don’t give us too much at once, or any frost.


Bring a song for the evening
Clean brass to flash the dawn
across these acres glistening like dew on a carpet lawn
In these dark towns folk lie sleeping
as the heavy horses thunder by
to wake the dying city with the living horseman’s cry
At once the old hands quicken —
bring pick and wisp and curry comb —
thrill to the sound of all the heavy horses coming home.

Heavy Horses
~Ian Anderson~


Do you simply reflect changes in the patterns of the sky?
Or is it true to say the weather heeds the twinkle in your eye?
Do you fight the rush of winter; do you hold snowflakes at bay?
Do you lift the dawn sun from the fields and help him on his way?
Good morning Weathercock: make this day bright.
Put us in touch with your fair winds.
Sing to us softly, hum evening’s song.
Point the way to better days we can share with you.


Gott Sei Mit Dir





By Neil Young



   Sep 29, 2004

   The full moon comes over the hills as I drive home early in the AM. A full night behind, the warmth of home ahead of me, the realization that life is full of twists and turns just like the road I drive.

   The full moon often makes me think of the many places I’ve watched that great orb rise and settle down.

   Some of the most beautiful sights I’ve ever seen has been the moon lowering itself into the Western sea. That great Pacific Ocean that lies not too far from home. Great glossy sea, smooth with the oils from the kelp, shining the reflection of the moon back into the dark sky. The moon can drown out the stars with its reflecting brilliance.

   There are times that the moon takes up the reflection of the sun from the earth. These are the times that we see the dark moon, but it has that curiously light aspect to it. Not the full moon shining like we usually associate with the lunar light. This is actually the reflection of the sun off the Earth lighting up the moon in a shallow imitation of it’s full-moon brilliance. This is a parlor trick of God as He plays with His great polished mirrors that He so long ago set spinning in the vastness of space when He took His first days foray into creation. This back-shining is called ‘Gegenschein’, which is German for something like ‘reflected back’.

   As I drive along looking at the moon, seeing the silver light shine upon the fields and hills around me, I can’t help but remember the words that my Grandmother once told me of her life on the farm in Hungary before the Nazis came. They had a large farm, and were well-to-do by the standards of the time and area. They had fields, orchards, and livestock. They did all their farming with animals and human power and all in the family worked long and hard to enable them to have a full larder before the winter snows would drown the fields in a carpet of white.

   When the harvest of wheat was ripening the work would be long and hard. Yet the mid-days were still hot. My grandmother told me they would wake at about two AM, and the old women would have already prepared coffee and baked rolls with lots of sugar for energy. The workers and family would all eat and then climb into the wagons for the ride to the fields where they would work harvesting the wheat by the light of the harvest moon.

   At about six AM the old women would send the young children out to the fields with cooked bacon, rolls with butter and jelly, potatoes and eggs and more coffee. All work would cease for breakfast. And then they would resume work after eating and refortifying themselves.

   The at about ten AM the children would return with a small lunch of rolls, jelly and butter, and other assorted treats. Then they would get back to work again.

   A full lunch would be sent to them at about noon, this would be a large and massive lunch consisting of chicken or pork, vegetables including always potatoes and some Cole crop such as kohlrabi or cabbage. They would also have a fair amount of homemade brandy. This large meal would make them all sleepy, and they would then go to sleep in the shade of the trees or under the wagon. This would spare them from the heat of the day.

   After a four hour break and nap they would resume working again. At about five or so a small supper would be sent out to keep them from hunger. This would be the same kinds of things they had for lunch, but in smaller quantities. Then at about eight or so they would have some more food, something with sugar for energy. they would work until about ten at night, when they would return to the house to stumble bone-tired into their beds to sleep for four hours until they woke again at two AM.


   I think about my grandmother and the hardships she endured in her life. The sadness of having her husband snatched away to die in a foreign land when she was just a young woman. Widowed at twenty-four, and then driven from her farm and the land of her ancestors by the communist government with a young daughter in tow to go penniless to another land where she was regarded with suspicion because of her accent and different clothing and eating habits.

   She was indeed a marvelous woman, and a strong and wise one. She had a tenacity that was amazing, an intuitive knack of being able to find the simple in the complex, to break all down into the simple meanings that a peasant would understand and be able to convey to a child.

   Now as I watch this moon on it’s ascent as I drive this California freeway at a time when all good and honest people should be safely tucked away into their own beds, I reflect that this is the time when she and her kin would be rising from the goose down folds of their beds and rising to the scent of fresh coffee on a cool Hungarian morning, and I am just now heading home to retire for the night.

   How is it that life has taken us all from one generation to the next in a flight from the peaceful bucolic peasant life with it’s hugely manual labor to the frenetic pace of a cyber-ponzi scheme that rushes from one moment to another at all hours of the day? She told me often that I should slow down, and take some time to enjoy my garden, not just work in it. She was trying to tell me to take the time to smell the roses.

   She is now passed on into another world for some eighteen months now, and she walks with the Lord in a land of eternal sunshine in the peaceful fields of her youth, alive with the sounds of the birds in the trees shining with green leaves. The children of a lost time run with her, free from the trauma of war-weary men who break into the house and rip up the bed sheets to make bandages for their fallen comrades and cause unspeakable damage to the innocents around them out of avarice and despair.

   She is free now from all of mankind’s ills and demons. but she left me and other people she touched with so much. So much she told us and taught us. And so much that she did not say. I can still think of her way of saying “uhuh” when she did not agree with something I was going to do. This was her subtle way of telling me that she did not agree with the outcome that I thought would ensue, but she left it to me to do as I wished and experience the outcome so I would more fully learn the lesson. Now as a result of so many decades of hearing her advice, I can imagine what she would say to almost any situation that might arise in my life. If I get that little niggling doubt in my mind I can hear her “uhuh” coming through to me warning me of a dangerous and foolhardy undertaking (I’ve had my share of those).

   So, I drive along, a smile of whist fullness on my lips, a longing to be able to hear her speak again. But I speak to her everyday, and ask God often for His help in her new life. And I know that He loves her much more than I ever could, so He holds her close to His heart always.

   There is a saying I heard once, “when you pray do not say “The Lord is in my heart”, say “I am in the heart of the Lord”". And she is in His heart.

   So, I turn from the freeway, heading to the California hills that are now my home. Two generations from the plains of Hungary, and one life from the next.

   The harvest moon rising in my eyes.

   Gott Sei Danke.


The following little prayer in German was at a site from
Bruder Titus, that I liked enough to want to include.
Because it would have meant a lot to my grandmother,
it means a lot to me.

Gott sei mit dir

Gott sei mit dir, da wo du wohnst und lebst
und schenke dir seine Gnade.
Gott sei mit dir, da wo du arbeitest
und schenke dir seine Kraft.
Gott sei mit dir, da wo du hoffst und betest
und schenke dir Erfüllung.
Gott sei mit dir, da wo du den Frieden suchst
und schenke dir Gelingen.
Gott sei mit dir, da wo du feierst
und schenke dir Freude.
Gott sei mit dir, da wo du liebst,
und schenke dir seinen Segen.

God is with you

God is with you, there where you live and love
and gives you His grace.
God is with you, there where you work
and gifts you with His strength.
God is with you, there where you hope and pray
and gives you fulfilment.
God is with you, there where you look for peace
and gives you success.
God is with you, there where you celebrate
and gives you joy.
God is with you, there where you love,
and gives you His benedictions.

The End of Rivenrock? Will the tin soldier ride away?

The Law in its majestic equality,
forbids rich as well as poor to sleep under bridges,
to beg in the streets,
and to steal bread

~Anatole France~

   Since 1993 we’ve been an organically certified small farm in California. I had a job with a contractor which paid our household expenses and kept us solvent even when the farm sales were less than our farm expenses. But two years ago when the factory in town closed down, and most of us were laid off, I decided to go into the cactus growing more full time.  We grow a unique vegetable which we’ve shipped throughout the country.  Initially we shipped the cactus leaves as nursery stock, then governmental regulations tightened and we became more aware of the laws and regulations of shipping nursery stock into other states.  So we switched to shipping the younger leaves for people to eat themselves as produce. Our goal has been to ship to Health Food Stores, and restaurants as well as individuals who might be interested in the leaves we grow. Through the years our customer list grew slowly but steadily at a steady 30% rate. As the years progressed the governmental regulations seemed to grow more onerous… and the last year we’ve lost many of our older customers due to the recession. Other businesses have quit, some people seem to have stopped their regular orders. Yet, due to aggressive marketing, our sales this year are the highest we’ve ever had due to many new customers. Yet this was done at the expense of any profit we might have had.  And again the government has come down on us harder. Now we have been notified that we must complete a fifteen hour ‘continuing education’ credits in water pollution and conservation. I’m all for education, but these government-mandated classes for all farms in the state are not provided for free… we must pay for them ourselves.  The worse part is that they are given in the major population centers of Ventura or Monterrey to which we must take ourselves, and pay for our own lodging for the three days of the course.

   It is this extra bit that has me stymied.  We don’t really make any money doing this cactus business. All of our money goes to shipping, governmental fees of several thousand dollars yearly in order to maintain our licenses, permits, and associated fees and overhead expenses.  Knowing that this trip will lead us into negative financial territory makes me reluctant to want to go.  Knowing that due to these regulations, we must take  a sample of our water and have it analyzed monthly at unknown costs…. I am seriously aggravated at the state of our laws and the level of compliance required even for tiny little micro-farms.

   We have some months in  which to take the classes, and maybe I’ll find some classes nearby, but this more personal posting than usual is to let the people know that governmental regulations are  a double-edged sword. While they give the USA good traceability in produce, and  what is perhaps the safest produce in the world, it also makes for stronger economy-of-scale issues that stymie the small grower… right at a time that we are needing MORE small farms, not less.  If we were a huge corporate farm, with many employees, still we would need just one person to go to the classes, but when it’s a one-man operation, the standards are the same. The costs are the same, but they are a larger share of the profit in a small operation like ours.

     My usual outlook is of hope and positive thoughts. Rarely am I dragged into this level of aggravation.    I am sure I will sign up for the classes in Monterrey, they seem very informative and interesting.  But people need to know that excessive governmental regulations strangle small business, they hamper the process of business formulation.  We need to seriously look at what we want for this country, a place where people can transact business legally and efficiently with little governmental interference. If the government requires classes such as this, it should place them within the reach of the people, if it requires monthly water sampling, it should have a method to make such sampling efficient and inexpensive, (the paperwork mentions some samples might cost $8,000 yearly).

   Excessive governmental regulations hamper small business more than the large. If due only to ‘economy of scale’.

    When my dad grew up on an Ozark farm in the thirties and forties, they raised corn and wheat, raised hogs which they sold every fall and winter, and had a hundred or so chickens from which they sold eggs daily. They had five or six milk cows which they milked by hand, using the milk for food and their dogs, and one milk-can daily which they left on the roadside for the milk company to pick up.  They also went to neighboring farms to supply skilled farm labor.  Nowadays they would have to have many more permits, and each operation would require specialized equipment and permits and licensing.  As all these regulations pile onto business, you must streamline your operations, drop aspects that have no profit and require permits,  then you start to specialize. Yet a small family farm should not be a specialist farm, it should have a wide variety of foods and animals to create the ‘loop system’ for bio-diversity.  Yet through the years we have had to drop livestock from our farm, first initially because we did not have proper butchering facilities,  so we stopped the breeding of animals, until we had no more. We stopped using manures for fertilizer years ago because the government is worried about contamination of the soils with bacteria from manures. We stopped bringing in mulches for weed control and soil building because we could not vouch for the exact trees the wood chips came from. We are now a closed system with no outside inputs, and only material going out at a rate of a ton a month. Yet even this production is priced so low, and the shipping and governmental costs are so high, that we make no profit.  One day, it might just get through my head that I’m better off just enjoying the property ourselves, and stop working so hard to make a business out of it.  Yet, I know I can’t, we have such great customers….

   While mulling these thoughts over in my head, I decided I needed to go for a walk. So with my camera in hand, I went down the road and took photos of the things I love about living here.  And it is when in the wilderness, when I am furthest from people and the government, that I am closest to God and nature.  These photos are my world, they are my daily activities and sights…. it is what is most in my heart.



‘One Tin Soldier’


    Listen, children, to a story
That was written long ago,
‘Bout a kingdom on a mountain
And the valley-folk below.
On the mountain was a treasure
Buried deep beneath the stone,
And the valley-people swore
They’d have it for their very own.

Go ahead and hate your neighbor,
Go ahead and cheat a friend.
Do it in the name of Heaven,
You can justify it in the end.

There won’t be any trumpets blowing
Come the judgement day,
On the bloody morning after….
One tin soldier rides away.
So the people of the valley
Sent a message up the hill,
Asking for the buried treasure,
Tons of gold for which they’d kill.
Came an answer from the kingdom,
“With our brothers we will share
All the secrets of our mountain,
All the riches buried there.”
Go ahead and hate your neighbor,
Go ahead and cheat a friend.
Do it in the name of Heaven,
You can justify it in the end.
There won’t be any trumpets blowing
Come the judgement day,
On the bloody morning after….
One tin soldier rides away.
Now the valley cried with anger,
“Mount your horses! Draw your sword!”
And they killed the mountain-people,
So they won their just reward.
Now they stood beside the treasure,
On the mountain, dark and red.
Turned the stone and looked beneath it…
“Peace on Earth” was all it said.
Go ahead and hate your neighbor,
Go ahead and cheat a friend.
Do it in the name of Heaven,
You can justify it in the end.
There won’t be any trumpets blowing
Come the judgement day,
On the bloody morning after….
One tin soldier rides away.




Hot and Dry

Genesis 1: 29-31

29 And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed,
which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree,
in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.30 And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air,
and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life,
I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so.

31 And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good.
And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.



Psalm 104:8-24

8 They go up by the mountains;
they go down by the valleys unto the place
which thou hast founded for them.

9 Thou hast set a bound that they may not pass over;
that they turn not again to cover the earth.

10 He sendeth the springs into the valleys,
which run among the hills.

11 They give drink to every beast of the field:
the wild asses quench their thirst.

12 By them shall the fowls of the heaven have their habitation,
which sing among the branches.

13 He watereth the hills from his chambers:
the earth is satisfied with the fruit of thy works.

14 He causeth the grass to grow for the cattle, and herb for the service of man:
that he may bring forth food out of the earth;

15 And wine that maketh glad the heart of man, and oil to make his face to shine,
and bread which strengtheneth man’s heart.

16 The trees of the LORD are full of sap;
the cedars of Lebanon, which he hath planted;

17 Where the birds make their nests:
as for the stork, the fir trees are her house.

18 The high hills are a refuge for the wild goats;
and the rocks for the conies.

19 He appointed the moon for seasons:
the sun knoweth his going down.

20 Thou makest darkness, and it is night:
wherein all the beasts of the forest do creep forth.

21 The young lions roar after their prey,
and seek their meat from God.

22 The sun ariseth, they gather themselves together,
and lay them down in their dens.

23 Man goeth forth unto his work and
to his labour until the evening.

24 O LORD, how manifold are thy works!
In wisdom hast thou made them all:
the earth is full of thy riches