Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Overland park botanical garden

The other day I took the two older kiddos to the Overland Park botanical garden.  They like to see new plants need smell flowers and do everything kids love to do. To be perfectly honest I like to do those things as well.

The park is a little bit out-of-the-way, but we wanted to see what it was all about anyway. I have to say that the park is massive and very well cared for. At nearly 300 acres the park has lots of wild areas as well as the manicured gardens  that you would expect. The wild areas had plenty of labels letting you know what trees were white, and what wildflowers you may see.  They even had signs pointing out wildlife to look for.

Overall the kids and I wore ourselves out, looking at statuary finding lions mane mushrooms (and reluctantly leaving them in place).  And even exploring rocks. The gardens have more pawpaws than I've ever seen in my life.  I suppose that's the advantage of being in the river valley on the eastern part of the state.  Around here I know several stands of pawpaw trees but nothing like the wild trails   At the botanical gardens.    I would love to see their Forest Garden have a little more native fruits, Black haw, serviceberry, Saskatoon and persimmon would fit right in.  Perhaps there were some there and I just missed them.

But those are my personal biases. I love edible plants, or plants that show how productive and beautiful nature can be simultaneously.

A walk through Monet's garden let's you visualize the impressionists viewpoint as he often painted things from his own garden. A sculpture garden let's you see some amazing artwork and imagery all against a beautiful natural background. A birdwatchers blind allows you to get pretty personal with a lot of forest species of birds, although when we went it was mostly chickadees and titmice. I am not complaining, those little bundles of energy are fun to watch and almost match my kids personalities.

It got me thinking about how blessed I am to have botanical gardens nearby. These are beautiful stretches, manicured in some areas and wild in others that I neither have to plant nor care for, but just enjoy. The immense work and thought that goes into them is reflected in the many different ways that people enjoy them.

If you have a chance to visit this one, I recommend it and if there are some that you enjoy please let me know in the comments.

You can find out more about the Overland Park Botanical Garden here.

Live a hands on life

Friday, November 11, 2016

Free book Friday how to lie with statistics

I figured that we could return to free book Friday with something that is relevant.

The only people I know who actually predicted what would happen and were not invested in the campaign either for or against were John M├ędaille and John Michael Greer.

While I do not think that the polls were intentionally skewed I think that there was bias as there always is.  We as humans always have our own biases to contend with even if we are not aware of them.

And a lot of what we see in polls and graphs on the news is propaganda, intended to sway our thinking one way or another. This book allows you to see some of the common techniques, and by being aware of skewed data, to be a more informed person.

How to lie with statistics is available here

Live a hands on life

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

On a new president and a new try at blogging

Well, that was interesting.

 While I was and remain never Trump, I hope that he does a good job as president.

I now am returning to what any distributist should always return to, the people that I know. There are many who voted for him, and many who fear him. But I believe in democracy, in that I believe that my fellow man or fellow woman wills me no evil, and wants what is best for everyone.

But returning to the task at hand. I have never been good at keeping up with the blog. I got discouraged very easily and early. Hopefully the hope I have for the future and the pain of some around me will give me the impetuous that I need.

So I begin here, exactly what I would say if Hillary had won. The Church and her people were never meant to be powerful, but to be marginalized. We follow a God who stripped Himself of power, and became a poor carpenter who lived on the outskirts of society and was executed.  I voted for the American Solidarity Party because they were closest to my beliefs, but this is not heaven and we are not angels. Even if the ASP had somehow won, the problems that we have as a nation would not disappear.

And so I return to what I believe is my calling, Teaching and helping others to gain the skills and knowledge that they need to be more self sufficient, and to foster real community. I have several projects that I am looking forward to sharing with you all in the coming weeks, from foraging, to growing mushrooms, to starting trees from seed. I hope that this is truly a new beginning for us all.

Live a hands on Life