Personal Update – June 2021

I apologize for not posting anything last week – I went on a surprise mini getaway with my gentleman friend, and we didn’t have internet where we were. We were too busy enjoying ourselves for me to even think about posting to be honest. Still, I’m back, and I’m starting the week off with an update for this month. ๐Ÿ™‚

Also, I am nearly to 300 total followers – this is counting everyone from WordPress and social media – I just need 5 more people to hit the milestone! Once this happens, I’ll do a random drawing and send the winner a signed copy of Crimson Knight!

MSAL

This is the block for May. It’s a much simpler design than the first two. I’ve already completed June’s block, but I’ll show it to you next month. If you’re also doing this Mystery Sampler Stitch A Long hosted by Linen and Threads please, feel free to share your work! I’d love to see what you’ve done!

Health

I currently weigh close to 200 pounds(that’s 14 stone, 4 lb and 90.72 kg), and I’m only 5ft1. My Body Mass Index(BMI) is 37.8 and is classed as Obese for people in my height range. I should weigh between 98 and 132 with a BMI of between 18 and 24.9. At my age, obesity can become life threatening.

So, I’ve decided to make a major lifestyle change. Well, not really major as I already eat pretty healthy. I have cut out sugar except what comes naturally in my food, same with salt, and I drink carbonated drinks about once a month. I am cutting out loaf bread and changing over to flatbread. I am going to be eating mainly polyphenol rich foods and add more protein to my diet. I am changing the way I cook – what recipes I use mostly. I want to eat more Mediterranean style recipes. My ancestors come from there, and they all lived really long healthy lives.

I plan to live to be 100 years of age so I need to get started on eating properly and shedding a great deal of this weight so I can reach this goal.

In addition to being overweight, I am entering menopause, and this is bring it’s own issues with it. I am actively looking for a natural estrogen replacement to help with the symptoms of this phase of my life. The thing I hate most is the added depression. I already suffer from chronic depression and now, I’m having to deal with depression brought on by a hormone imbalance. Craziness.

Hogwarts Blanket Project

I’ve been making mini blankets for my friend Chantal to put into her 1;12 scale Hogwarts Common Rooms when she gets them built. I have to completely finished:

For those of you who are fans of the world of Harry Potter, can you tell me which houses these two belong in? I have completed the body of the third blanket, and I’ve started on the body of the fourth. Once it’s done, I’ll do the edging on both of them. They’ll be off to Western Australia as soon as possible after that.

Writing

I’m still working on getting Golden Knave’s second draft on the computer. I can’t sit for long periods of time or my back and neck begin to scream giving me a major headache so, I have to pace myself. It’s not easy.

Still, it’s coming along, and I’ll be able to send it out to Beta readers as soon as it’s all on the computer.

Book Ends Project

I don’t have any pictures of this yet. I am making two book ends in the Lord of the Rings theme as suggested by my son, Joe, I am doing the left book end right now, and it features a scene from The Prancing Pony Inn. I am doing my best to be true to the scene, but it 1/2 scale it’s hard. I am a beginner in this too so it’s not going to be like the pros. I am making it for my own use so while I am going to share pictures when I’m done, I’m not going to be doing any changes. The right bookend doesn’t quite have a scene chosen for it yet – I have some ideas but nothing definite yet.

And that’s it for this month. I can’t think of anything else I want to share with you at this time. Feel free to comment on anything you’ve read here but be mindful of others. I am not easily offended, but someone else might be.

See you on the flipside and don’t forget your towel and sonic screwdriver!!

Discord and Finished Blankets!

If you have Discord and/or, you want to chat with me in a more live like manner, hit me up at:

bgriff70#8670

I am on all the time because I play Shop Titans and Old School Runescape. Well, I haven’t played OSR in a bit, but I’ll be going back to it when I have a great deal more times. ST can run in the background and doesn’t need my active attention like OSR does.

Still, I’d love to talk and get to know you all better so let’s be friends! ๐Ÿ™‚

The blankets are approximately 5 inches wide by 8 inches tall, as shown by the picture above. I am using a pattern I bought from Buttercup Miniatures. The one above is the 1/12th Scale Cranesbill Lace Bedspread.

I used DMC floss #973 and #310 for the yellow/black Hufflepuff blanket, and I used DMC floss #336 and #680 for the blue/bronze Ravenclaw blanket. I used almost three full skeins for the bodies, and I used almost one full skein for the edging. I also used a .5mm steel hook. I ended up buying one used for braiding hair since I couldn’t find a regular crochet hook that small. I also used magnifying glasses to help save my eyesight.

I have begun working on the red/gold Gryffyndor blanket, and I’ll finish the set with the green/silver Slytherin blanket.

The two above will definitely be used in their appropriate common rooms that will be created by Chantal from Darkest Ravens Designs. I have featured her on YouTube Tuesdays twice now. I’ll be featuring the Common Room builds that have my blankets in them. ๐Ÿ™‚

Thank you all so much for stopping in, I’m almost to 300 followers between Word Press and my social media. I just need 7 more to hit that milestone.

See you on the flipside and don’t forget your towel and sonic screwdriver!

Bio Agriculture Economy

We’ve talked about the Forest Based Economy and the Blue or Ocean Based Economy so now, we should talk about the Bio Agriculture or Bio-Based Economy.

What is Bio Agriculture aka Bio-Based Economy

In simplest terms, this is an economy based on agriculture and its by products such as field waste from harvesting. By recycling waste material and using non-prime land for growing inedible grasses for biofuel production, this enables locals to produce more for selling as well as personal use.

How is Bio Agriculture Different From Agriculture.

Agriculture is a term for growing food. This means everything from an herb garden to an orchard. Anything non-meat and non-dairy you can harvest falls under Agriculture. Modern Agriculture uses a lot of chemicals to get rid of pests and increase yields. This is all well and good for the pocket of the grower, not so good for the health of the consumer. Also, Modern Agriculture doesn’t use their plant waste, they just plow it under in an effort to add to their soil.

Bio Agriculture is not a new concept or term. It’s actually been around since the 1930s, and Henry Ford even made car bodies out of soybeans for a while. It has gained in popularity as a healthy, holistic way of growing food on a large scale. Homesteaders have practiced Bio Agriculture for a very long time as they want healthy food for their families. Bio Agriculture uses no chemicals – everything is natural when it comes to pest control and enriching the soil. In addition, planting methods involving crop rotation and disc plowing are employed. Unlike Modern Agriculture, Bio Agriculture encourages the use of plant waste to make other things.

Benefits of Bio Agriculture

  1. Healthier food – the absence of chemicals on any kind makes what ever is grown for consumption healthier, Use of natural pesticides and companion planting negates the need for chemicals for pest control. Use of natural selection when growing enables the production of larger yields.
  2. Liquid-fuel production – this includes bio-diesel and ethanol based fuels.
  3. Markets Beyond the Traditional – in addition to food and feed, Bio Agriculture has seen a rise in the desire for items made from natural plants. These include bamboo sheets and hemp clothes.
  4. Cleaner Environment – no chemicals means no polluted water table and no poisoned animals. In addition, the processes for creating products from plants is almost completely carbon free. Also, no chemicals means cleaner soil, and holistic farming practices such as crop rotation and disc plowing create healthier soil.

Public Policy Regarding Bio Agriculture

In the 1980s, The New Uses Council and the Association for the Advancement of Industrial Crops were formed. In 1992, The Alternative Agriculture Research and Commercialization(AARC)Center was created and later, in 1996, The Alternative Agriculture Research and Commercialization Corporation was founded. These entities provided funding for a lot of corporations commercializing products from their bio-based research and development. These products range from furniture to clothing to plant-based lubricants – even pharmaceuticals.

In 1998, the Council of the NABC(Netherlands-African Business Council) released a paper called Vision Statement for Agricultural Research and Development in the 21st Century and in 2000, they released another paper called The Bio-Based Economy of the Twenty-First Century: Agriculture Expanding into Health, Energy, Chemicals and Materials(Eaglesham et al. 2000).

In 2000, The National Research Council published a report, Bio-based Industrial Products: Priorities for Research and Commercialization, and this gave it Bio Agriculture legitimate scientific backing.

Public Views of Bio Agriculture

Personally, I doubt a lot of people know what Bio Agriculture is, but I am quite certain most know what it does for them. It provides them with luxury items such as bamboo sheets, quality clothing made from hemp and even sustainable building materials for their homes. More and more people are demanding plant based products as opposed to plastic and metal. If they can recycle it, even better!

Conclusion

It’s my humble opinion that a Bio Agriculture Economy shouldn’t be the only economy present in any given area, much less country. It has its limits and its drawbacks as far as money making is concerned. In my last discussion regarding sustainable economic models, I’ll discuss the Circular Economy.

I strongly recommend doing research on all the economic models I’ve discussed to find out more about each one. My articles are not exhaustive or definitive in any way. They are merely a way to open up a discussion about these models.

See you on the flipside and don’t forget your towel and sonic screwdriver!!

Update May 2021

I have several things to update you on. ๐Ÿ™‚

MSAL

That image is of April’s square on the Mystery Sampler Stitch-Along I’m working on. I think it came out pretty interesting looking. I already have the pattern for May’s square, and I’ll be working on it tomorrow.

Personal Stuff

I’m taking classes from Shaw Academy in Bookkeeping and a mini MBA in Business. I am nearly done with the second of four modules. The classes are about 30 minutes each, and they put a lot of information into those time periods. I am really enjoying them.

I’m also taking Personal Development classes over on Skill Success. They are mostly beginner level courses, but I’m still learning a lot from the classes I’ve taken so far. I’ve taken several different time management courses as well as memory and productivity classes.

I took those courses because I really need help being more productive and use my time better. I need to hustle and make every day, every hour, count in order to reach my goals, and those classes have helped me figure out how to do that.

I visited with my gentleman friend as well this past weekend. I had fun, and we didn’t really do much. Just getting away and spending time talking and being together was enough for me. We were hog hunting at night, basically watching the feeder and waiting to see if they showed up. He has a scope on his rifle that links to his phone so I could watch what the scope was seeing too. It was actually pretty entertaining – like watching a black and white horror movie. ๐Ÿ™‚ We didn’t see any pigs, but we did get to watch some deer and raccoons.

Book Ends

I am making a pair of LOTR inspired bookends. My son came up with the ideas for them. They are going to be small dioramas of two scenes in the LOTR sage. One is going to be the table where the hobbits sat in the Prancing Pony when they meet Strider. The other will be the white tree where Aragorn and Arwen got married. They will be done in 1/24 scale, and I’ve already begun work on the Prancing Pony bookend. I am taking it slow so I get them done as nicely as I can.

Writing

I’ve begun the long task of putting my second draft of Golden Knave on the computer. I do several drafts in long hand and then, I put it all on the computer. With my back the way it is, I can’t sit in from of the computer for too long before I have to get up and move around. This means taking breaks and staying focused when I get back from the breaks. Actually, my neck has begun to bother me as my condition worsens with age. Still, the story is getting closer to being published.

I am still working on getting cover art for The Inbetween, my supernatural thriller. Any suggestions on an artist to work with would be greatly appreciated.

That’s about it for this month, I’ll have more to talk about next month I’m sure.

See you on the flipside and don’t forget your towel and sonic screwdriver!!

Something to think about

I have written several posts about green ideas like the Forest BioEconomy initiatives happening in the United States and in Europe. I’ve also written about a hybrid energy producing systems which are even now being created and tested. I foresee several of these systems being put to use in geographical locations where they make the most of their parts. Places that are mostly plains with plenty of wind would be ideal for hybrid energy parks featuring solar and wind, mostly wind, systems in addition to fossil and nuclear components.

I found an article in the online magazine, Engelsberg Ideas, written by Helen Thompson called The geopolitical fight to come over green energy. I recommend reading it.

This article talks in broad terms about the way different countries are handling the move towards a green energy future and how they are viewing this inevitable shift. The entire world is moving towards a future with less pollution and more efficient energy production while also building the global economy.

Change is happening right now

Helen Thompson rightly points out there are going to be issues, political mainly, as things progress. It stands to reason that there will be. People don’t like change, and big business hates change when it affects their bottom line. Governments also hate change because it can threaten the power they hold over their people, can threaten their status quo.

Still, the world’s population is demanding a greener future no matter the cost. Climate change is not entirely man’s doing, it’s part of the earth’s cycle however, Man has helped speed up the time table so that this change is occurring a great deal sooner than it should be. In order to slow things down a bit, as well as provide a future that is cleaner and healthier for its people than it is now, Man has to make some hard choices and some big changes.

Accountability is for everyone

This means the citizens of the world must hold their governments accountable, as well as themselves. No one country can do it alone. No one person can do it alone. We must all do our part to assist in the changes that are needed to be made. We cannot ask one county, much less one person, to do something we are not willing to do ourselves.

Change must be done globally with governments and citizens doing their parts to assist with the changes.

What can we, as individuals do?

  1. Petition your authorities on all levels from local all the way to the top, demanding they support green energy initiatives including technological developments like the hybrid energy systems being developed by the Department of Energy in the United States.
  2. Invest in green energy systems in any way you can – if you can afford to get solar panels and small windmills to help you offset your energy bill you lower the overall need for fossil fuel energy.
  3. Demand companies reduce their emissions and carbon production through petitions and if necessary, boycotts. Companies are boycotted for less so why not do it for something that would benefit everyone?
  4. Find ways to assist in the development of economies that help your local community, ways that can be scaled up to help other communities in your country as well.
  5. Research the issues facing the move towards a greener future – don’t let big business and governments control the narrative, the flow of information. The information is out there, you just have to educate yourself and not believe everything told to you by those in power and in the media.

The future is being born even as I write this. Europe has already begun making the changes, and the rest of the world needs to follow. Changes can be made and not hurt local economies. In fact, the changes could actually help local economies, they just need to get out of their own ways. The past must be let go off in order for progress to be made.

The Industrial Revolution would not have happened if people weren’t willing to take chances and embrace change. We are in the beginning stages of a new revolution. This revolution will encompass technological changes, political changes and even economic changes as we demand a greener, healthier future for ourselves and our families.

This is something to think about but make no mistake, change is coming, it’s already on its way.

See you on the flipside and don’t forget your towel and sonic screwdriver!!

Raffle Has Ended

I want to thank everyone who participated in this event!! Every cent is going to help me offset the vet bills for my gorgeous Mimi who is my life – aside from my gentleman friend, of course!!

She is on the mend after suffering from a horrible bout of bronchitis, and I am thankful for that as well.

So, the winner of this raffle is :

Brenda C!!

I’ll be contacting her in a few minutes to exchange mailing details. Congrats to you my dear!!

If you’d like for me to raffle off something else, let me know in the comments below. Raffles are fun, and I like to make things to give away!!

See you on the flipside and don’t forget your towel and sonic screwdriver!!

Raffle is at Halfway!

This means you only have one week left before the raffle is done, and the winner is both chosen and announced!! For those of you who are new here, I am holding a raffle to help me pay off Mimi’s vet bills. She is recovering from a severe bout of bronchitis. I am having trouble paying the bills for her so, we’re trying to raise funds by holding a raffle.

So, what are we raffling off?? It’s a handmade crocheted accent/throw pillow in bright colors:

This lovely can be machine washed, but if you have an agitator(as most people still do), it’s best to put inside a pillow case or a lingerie bag so the fringe doesn’t get caught. It can also be dried in the dryer. It won’t shrink, fade or bleed on your clothes! The yarn is mostly acrylic, but it’s still very soft.

Tickets are 50 cents American, and if you want to be less than $5 American, you can use the custom button below to buy less. I haven’t figured out how to change things on the donation form yet so please, forgive me this time!

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Your help is greatly appreciated I assure you!! This time next Monday, I will be choosing and announcing the winner of the raffle. It could be you!

THANK YOU SO MUCH to everyone who has entered so far!! I wish I could say so in person but considered yourselves HUGGED!! Mimi means a great deal to me especially since she is my constant companion!

See you on the flipside and don’t forget your towel and sonic screwdriver!!!

Discord and MSAL Update

I have Discord now! That’s right! Now, if you like, you can talk to me on Discord! I’m in the United States, Central Time, and I have it up most of the day as I work on things. If interested, here’s the link:

https://discord.gg/P8NtNMhQ

The above will take you to my server on Discord: B.K. Griffin, Author

I look forward to chatting with you all in real time!

MSAL

Here is what my version of the Linens and Threads Mystery Stitch A Long project looks like. This is January through March. April’s new arrival is the block on the top right. I’ll post a picture of it when it’s done. ๐Ÿ™‚

If you’d like to join me and others in stitching this wonderful pieces based on Talavera Pottery, the link is below:

MSAL

In other news, my Mimi has been very ill and to pay for her vet bills, I am raffling off a handmade throw pillow. It’s crocheted using 100% acrylic yarn that is machine washable, won’t shrink, bleed, or fade. It’s very soft for being acrylic. A single entry is 50cents American, and you can use the donate button below to enter. I will do a drawing in two weeks. Mimi and I will appreciate any help you can give us.

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$5.00
$15.00
$100.00
$5.00
$15.00
$100.00
$5.00
$15.00
$100.00

Or enter a custom amount

$

Your contribution is appreciated.

Your contribution is appreciated.

Your contribution is appreciated.

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The receipt you will receive will be linked to my author site, Griffin’s Nest on sitey.com so don’t be worried you’re being scammed. I also have Paypal, but you’ll need to message me to get that information.

Thank you so much for your help with Mimi and her vet bills. She means the world to me!

See you on the flipside and don’t forget your towel and sonic screwdriver!!

My First Book Nook!

I’ve watched quite a few YouTubers making book nooks, and I decided to try my hand at making one as well. I didn’t know anything about painting, making book nooks, putting in mini lights, or anything else that might help me with this build. I researched, asked questions, and watched what other people did. Then, more importantly, I just did it. I just started making a plan on what I want to make and how I was going to make it.

I gathered all the materials, and I began to put the thing together. Some things didn’t work at first, and I had to backtrack. Still, I moved forward and didn’t give up. Now the infinity mirror effect I tried didn’t work the way I wanted, but I have learned why. With this knowledge, I can try again in the future with more confidence it will work the second time.

I didn’t take pictures of the build itself, only the end results. It wasn’t something I planned to teach people to make or anything. I just built as best I could over the course of three weeks – most of the time spent waiting to get materials like the faerie lights. I did take pictures of the end result, and I welcome feedback.

I am a big Stephen King fan, and I thought this would make a nice first try as well as a great addition to my bookshelves once I’m able to have them again. I think I did okay. Feel free to comment on the build and what you think of it.

Note: the box is not made of wood. I had some friends tell me when I showed them the pictures they thought the wood box was great. It’s actually the box Ramen Noodles come is – the 12 pack box. ๐Ÿ™‚ I had to actually use two boxes to make the final one because I used the second one for parts, including the right wall.

I had a lot of fun making this nook, and I learned a lot while doing so. I plan to make another one inspired by the book, IT, but I won’t be doing it right away because I have a bunch of projects still waiting to be done.

See you on the flipside and don’t forget your towel and sonic screwdriver!!

Forest Based Bioeconomy

Bioeconomy is economy based on nature. It doesn’t just include making money, it also includes sustainability, technological development and community development. There are three areas of bioeconomy:

Blue Bioeconomy – based on all bodies of water such as oceans, seas, rivers and lakes

Forest based Bioeconomy – wood based including naturally occurring forests and tree plantations

Agriculture based Bioeconomy – mainly based on farming but can include animal husbandry.

I’ve already discussed Blue Economy a little bit. You can read the post here: Blue Bioeconomy

As stated above, Forest based Bioeconomy is based on forests, wood products and by products such as waste. Finland is the best example of a Forest based Bioeconomy that is well developed and successful. Other countries in Europe including Russia and France are working on their own Forest based Bioeconomy policies as a way to holistically improve not only their economies but their peoples’ ways of living.

The United States is considering bioeconomies but since the country has such a varied geography, using just one would be quite limiting and, in the end, not very successful. Individual states seem to be working on their own policies based on their own local resources.

Case in point is Michigan who has held two conferences on the subject as well as teaming up with experts in Finland as a way to leverage their own Forest based Bioeconomy policies. Technology is being developed, and practices are being put into place that will not only bring more jobs to the state, it will stimulate the local economy. Two must read articles are below:

The Second Michigan Forest Bioeconomy Conference

Finland, Maine and Michigan partner toward sustainable growth in forest bioeconomy

The following is a PDF that explains Forest based Bioeconomy better that I can:

Forest Bioeconomy

It’s important to keep apprised of these developments not only from the standpoint of sustainability but also investment and job opportunities. Technology is being developed to assist with achieving a circular economy from forest based products on a global scale, not just regionally and locally. As policies and practices are developed and perfected, more jobs will be created and the environment will still be protected.

Yes, there will be trade-offs, nothing is perfect. However, the trade-offs will become nominal as more circular economies based on bioeconomy are adopted and become successful.

As always, don’t take my word for it, read and research yourselves so that you can be informed on what’s going on in the world around us. I didn’t know about any of this until I audited a class online, and I am amazed at how long this has been going on, especially in the rest of the world.

See you on the flipside and don’t forget your towel and sonic screwdriver!!