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When I was 26 I signed up for my first 10-day silent meditation retreat. My mother’s response was “Why on earth would you want to sit around and think for 10 days?” Right, why would I? The truth is, “thinking” is not what meditation teaches. I get plenty of that everywhere else!
Growing up in Arlington, a lot of my friends worked minimum-wage jobs. I worked at a bookbindery during high school, pulling in about $3.50 an hour during the summer break.
Here is a confession: I LOVE the Take-It-Or-Leave-It! My love affair with Take-It-Or-Leave-It dates way back. But now I want to come clean because I finally have some data to retroactively justify my behavior.
Peace Island Medical Center was awarded a grant by the Washington Office of the Attorney General to provide three series of diabetes classes over the course of this next year.
In the last Energy Matters article “Facing the reality of fossil fuel economy and climate change”, I wrote about the ubiquity of fossil fuels in our everyday lives. Fossil fuels and the numerous products derived from them have fuelled our cars, factories that make stuff we use, agriculture that puts food on our tables, and economy on which we all depend. So how can we wean ourselves from “oil addition”?
My heart wrenched as I followed the news of the Super Typhoon Haiyan hitting the Philippines. One of the strongest storms on record, Haiyan made Katrina and Sandy look like “weak cousins.”
Pamm Larry, a former midwife, farmer, and business owner, quit her job to spark a campaign that last November came surprisingly close to defeating the Big Chemical and Big Food giants.
In the nine months since the Lopez Solid Waste Disposal District took over operation of the Lopez Dump, 331 tons of garbage, 209 tons of separated recyclable materials, and 14.5 tons of commingled recyclables have left the island on local trucks – including our own District truck – with local drivers.
The news that the Lummi Nation stood firm to “unconditionally and unequivocally” oppose the ill-considered Gateway Pacific Terminal project has brought us joy and humility.
Recently coal-terminal advocates won an apparent victory when the Army Corps of Engineers told Congress it would not perform an area-wide review of the proposed projects’ environmental impacts. Instead it would only consider the projects on a case-by-case basis and focus narrowly upon their impacts on U.S. waterways, over which it has regulatory control.
Thank you to all of the co-op members who participated in our 76th annual meeting. We are now looking forward to the next chapter of OPALCO’s long story – which we will write together.
No doubt that better and faster internet would bring economic, educational and communication benefits. Speaking personally, it is frustrating to pay Centurytel for 1.5 megabytes of download speed only to get as low as 0.02 Mbps or no internet at all.
At a special board meeting on Feb.13, the Lopez Island School Board voted unanimously to place a bond measure for a major school renovation project on the April 23 ballot for voter consideration.
I am on call 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. for one week, 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. the next week and the third week off, then I start again. I am also a lieutenant firefighter, so really I am on 24/7.
“Thriving Communities” are growing in several communities around the Salish Sea in a mutually supportive way. On Friday, Jan.4, a day was set aside at the Lopez Community Center to envision and discuss ways of strengthening and developing visions for community enrichment. Roughly between sixty and eighty people attended. The purpose of this event was to create successful growth models here at home. Ideas were discussed about how to take action to make our homes healthy and resource efficient, our lands sources of food and beauty, and our communities vibrant and resilient in these changing times. Most of those who attended came away moved with a sense of possibility and hope.
My heart is broken as I reflect upon the tragic events of Dec. 14, at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newton, Conn. That such innocent lives could so quickly and brutally be ripped from the tight fabric of that community and that school, is unimaginable to me.
What can the San Juan Islands learn from the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy?
On Saturday Nov. 3, over 450 residents of San Juan County packed the gymnasium at Friday Harbor High school during a three hour meeting to provide scoping comments to the Environmental Impact Statement for the proposed coal terminal at Cherry Point in Bellingham.
The dispatcher recognizes the victim’s voice. The deputies know the address. The prosecutor remembers the prior incidents. The advocate knows the victim. The defense attorney, judge, probation officer, counselors, domestic violence perpetrator treatment provider know the abuser.
Salmon, transportation, recreation, tourism, commerce … Puget Sound waters have provided food in the belly and cash in the pockets of islanders for generations.
Our generation inherited a world contaminated with PCBs. They were considered as safe as mineral oil and table salt. PCBs were used in hundreds of applications from insulating fluids, plasticizers in paints, pesticide extenders, caulking, adhesives, to carbonless copy paper.
I have a fear of birds, which I suspect originated on a beach trip with my father when I was eight. He thought it was hilarious to put bits of bread on my head to feed the seagulls.
Many wonder if we citizens can influence coal transport around the San Juan Islands. We can, but first, we need to get informed and involved.
I, too, am a member of the Charter Review Commission, one of three No votes on the amendments. I would like to respond to some of Gordy Petersen’s statements. Mr. Petersen decries the “costly” decisions from the current six-member council. He does not, in this case, and almost every other, explain or support his opinion. He just believes it.
This article is the last of the three-part series on the planned exports of coal and tar sands oil exports through the waters surrounding our islands.
In my first year as auditor, the first time I went out on a limb to project revenue, it was to say that sales tax revenue that year would not meet budget. Having no experience in forecasting, I was way out of my comfort zone in saying that. I was relieved the next week to see the local paper reporting the same thing: that sales tax revenue would fall short that year. When I read the article, however, I was chagrined to see that the paper’s source for that projection was me. I’ve come a ways since then. I’ve developed tools for reviewing revenue, and I have a few years of good historical data to build on.
On June 6, 2,261 signatures collected in support of Initiative 2012-4 to ban the propagation of genetically modified organisms in San Juan County where handed in to the county auditor.
Washington State Department of Transportation Ferries Division Assistant Secretary David Moseley and members of his staff will be holding two public meetings on Thursday, June 7. One will be held on the inter-island ferry from 11:35 a.m. until 2 p.m. The second meeting will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. in the San Juan County Council Chambers in Friday Harbor.
e Here’s what we islanders do for each other. We make meals when a new baby arrives or when someone goes through chemotherapy. When a family’s house burns down, we give shelter and help build a new one. Some of us mentor school kids, others drive shuttle buses for seniors, and many serve on the boards of nonprofits.
Possibly the oldest club on Lopez Island, The Birthday Club, will be celebrating its 90th anniversary May 17, 2 p.m. at Woodmen Hall, (previously scheduled for May 18 - note the change) with hostesses dressed in skirts or dresses with old-fashioned hats apropos of the attire worn by members of past generations. Edna Leidig, who plays the piano will be playing some rollicking old tunes and members who are so inclined can sing or hum along.
The movie will be shown on Lopez, Tuesday, May 1, 7 p.m. at the Lopez Library Conference Room. Sponsored by San Juan County Money Out of Politics Committee, affiliate of Move to Amend.org.
As we barrel head-long into spring, out come the pickaxes, hoes, and shovels. Seed packets are inventoried and orders placed. Garden plans are adjusted. Perennials are already rearing their tender heads.
April is sexual assualt awareness month. Look for an article from Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Services of San Juan County each week this month with valuable educational thoughts.
The arts offer community participation, but they also give our lives meaning, provide opportunities for self expression and offer a way of viewing the world from a different perspective—enriching both individuals and society and reaching people who may be stressed and/or often not otherwise easily engaged with their community.
The next meeting of the San Juan County Charter Review Commission is on Saturday, Feb. 25 at the San Juan Grange from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
County hits 2011 budget marks at 4th quarter end — challenges remain
As a resident of Lopez and as an attorney, I was asked by County Council member Jamie Stephens to analyze whether our Lopez Port District is authorized to operate our Transfer Station. Specifically, I was asked to comment (i) on the opinion of the Port District attorneys (who are located in Bellingham) and (ii) on the opinion of our County Attorney, Randy Gaylord.
Because we are in the “Month of Love” we here at Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Services think that now is a great time to Stop the painful cycle of abuse and start truly loving each other. We have shared a story to show how one brave young woman took the tough steps to break the cycle in her family. You can too.
At a recent public meeting of the Port of Lopez, I answered many questions about the limits on the powers of a port district to operate a solid waste handling facility. Last fall I asked the County Administrator Pete Rose that same question. On Nov. 1, I said it would be good to ask the port’s attorneys to provide an answer.
Washington State has issued a new set of guidelines for prescribing opioid (narcotic) drugs for non-cancerous chronic pain. These guidelines went into effect Jan. 1 of this year, and they change many aspects of medical practice around chronic pain management.