ORIENTED TO LIFE

The Ultimate Emergency Preparedness: A Tiny House You Can Drive Away

Since we’ve been talking about emergency preparedness after the fire evacuation, I wanted to wrap that up by getting our Tiny House Toxic Free blog live, Because having your own house on wheels that you can drive away at a moment’s notice is the ultimate in emergency preparedness, as well as being a resource-efficient way to live that is in alignment with lifely principles.

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Three Little Shops on Judah Street

On Tuesday morning Larry and I went out looking for breakfast.

Our friend recommended we walk up Judah Street to an all-organic place called Judahlicious which was organic and delicious. They specialize in serving uniquely crafted raw and vegan cuisine with fresh juices and smoothies made to order.

Judahlicious happens to be next door to Other Avenues, a worker-owned 100% organic food co-op that started way back before there were many natural food stores.

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Hand Lettering and Watercolors

Because I was “forced” away from my desk by the fire evacuation last week, I had plenty of time to wander around San Francisco and explore anything I wanted to explore.

So one place I went to was my favorite art supply store, Flax. Now last time I went to Flax it was a huge store filled with all kinds of papers and leather binders and pens of all types—just an art supply wonderland. While in the past I wasn’t the type of artist who draws or paints, the materials themselves always inspired me, especially all the papers.

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How My Favorite Food Appeared for Our First Evacuation Dinner

When we were evacuated from our home because of possible fire danger, we went to San Francisco because it was the closest place that had power and better air. And we could stay with a friend.

The first night we decided to all go out to dinner together. We agreed on a restaurant that our friend had been to before, but we hadn’t. We decided to take the streetcar because parking in that part of town would be impossible.

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Time Outside of Time

Many years ago I had an “a year and a day” appointment book, which had an explanation at the beginning about the meaning of “a year and a day”.

Now I’m telling you this from memory, so it may not be accurate, but if I remember correctly, at some early point in history when calendars were still being developed, the “year” was 364 days and “a day” was an day outside of the year. So the old year would end, “a day” would pass, and then the new year would begin. There was a day-long festival on “a day” and that was that.

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Emergency Preparedness + Being Mobile

When I was a child in school, I went through the entire Girl Scout program, starting with Brownies and all through high school. I was even a Girl Scout camp counselor. So I was am well familiar with the Girl Scout motto “Be Prepared.” For Girl Scouts this means being prepared at any moment to face difficulties and even dangers by knowing what to do and how to do it. This is an excellent motto for life and has served me well. Girl Scouts prepared me to know how to do many things, but at the time the organization did not prepare us for emergencies of the type we face today.

What I want to give you here are some things that I learned about how I wasn’t prepared for last week’s evacuation from my local wildfire. I didn’t realize until after I was driving away what I had left behind.

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The Purpose of Fire in the Wild

Since fire has made a big impact on the lives of everyone in our local communities last week, I just wanted to write a little something about the purpose of fire in nature—it’s characteristics, what it does, and how it contributes to Life. In ancient times fire was considered to be one of the four elements of life—earth, air, fire, water.

Today we consider fire to be destructive to our industrial lifestyle, but in times past, when we humans had more contact and experience with fire as part of life, fire was viewed in a very different way.

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Unexpected Chaos—Our Evacuation From the Wildfire

On Thursday, 23 October, a major wildfire broke out here in Sonoma County, California, caused by faulty equipment provided by our local power company Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E). Because the Kincaid fire started about 25 miles north of where we live, we thought we were out of the danger zone. I couldn’t imagine that a fire would travel 25 miles without being contained. So we did nothing to prepare for evacuation.

But we were evacuated, and quite unexpectedly.

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California Wildfires—A Burning Example of Why We Need to Go Beyond Industrialization

Late Thursday afternoon Larry and I decided to drive up the Sonoma County coast from Bodega Bay to Timber Cove to have dinner.

As we drove we noticed something in the air over the ocean. Was it mist? Was it fog?

I started to have difficulty breathing and felt nauseous. Granted we were on a winding road, but I’ve been on this road my whole life and have never been carsick.

By the time we reached Timber Cove, it was almost sunset. They wouldn’t seat us outdoors “because of the fire.” Ah, yes. Now this all made sense.

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Jack-O-Lanterns

I think Jack-o-lanterns are my favorite of all seasonal symbols. Today they are the quintessential Halloween icon, yet the first jack-o-lanterns weren’t carved in pumpkins at all–they were made from turnips.

Jack-o-lanterns originated many centuries ago in Europe. The Celtic people there had a seasonal celebration called Samhain. The celebration honored death because it was the season of death–all around them, leaves were falling, grasses were drying out, and animals that could not be overwintered because of lack of food and shelter were slaughtered to be eaten over the barren winter. As all the life energies of the earth go underground to prepare for new growth the next spring, it was natural to acknowledge the end of the cycle of life for the year, get ready for the long, cold, lifeless winter ahead.

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uite simply, this blog is about orienting ourselves and our lives to life, instead of orienting ourselves and our lives to industrial consumerism. Here we are sharing our own journey. You come too.

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Debra & Larry Redalia
lifepartners + soulmates

For more than 30 years we have been delving into the nature and activities of life together. Indeed, this has been and continues to be the very reason we are together. With delight we research, explore, observe and even wake each other up in the middle of the night to discuss how life functions and how we can function as life—even while living in the modern world. We each are different from the norm, but we are different in the same way, so we have been able to think outside of the ordinary together and find the extraordinary workings of life.

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Good, the more communicated, more abundant grows.
— John Milton