The Runaway Dandelion

Launch Day

A once idyllic meadow, home to animals, birds, insects, wildflowers and ancient apple trees is clear cut by a bulldozer to make way for new construction. Miraculously, there is one survivor—a lonely little dandelion. When her golden petals turn to white fluff, she takes flight in search of a new home.

We get a bird’s eye view of her journey over many big houses and manicured green lawns. When she spots a lush green meadow, surrounded by wetlands, we follow her down to earth, and cheer as she puts down new roots.

We meet all the inhabitants of this small Family Farm and observe their daily life. What’s special about this farm is that each of their activities contribute to a sustainable lifestyle, and consequently lead to a brighter and more promising future.

The Runaway Dandelion by Jill Regensburg is a contemporary fable that is as informative as it is timely. Young readers, as well as parents and teachers, can explore many earth friendly techniques including organic gardening, solar and wind power, water harvesting, alternative heating, growing medicinal herbs, and cultivating gourmet mushrooms on logs.

There is a Glossary, and suggestions for family friendly cooking-with-dandelion recipes. A comprehensive resource list of follow up links encourages readers to further explore these Permaculture techniques.

On the Radio with Faren Siminoff

Radio Show GTE 45+

Author-historian Faren Siminoff wonders about what will happen to American society if our current simmering political and economic climate persists. She’s concerned and thinks other people should be too. In her debut novel, The Transformation: GTE 45, she explores themes of liberty, truth, history, and disenfranchisement in an eerily familiar world.

Set 45 years in the future, Siminoff’s disturbing dystopian political novel takes place in a re-branded Corporate States of America after the collapse of the Republican Party as we’ve known it, a transformed new far-right regime rules over complacent citizens in a reality they call “the Great Transformation.”

High-ranking professor Layla Saenz navigates a perilous and twisted love triangle with Paul Gaugin, a classified Wage Earner, and Isaac Freeman, the charismatic and powerful leader of the Church of the Revealed Saints. When Layla is suspected of uploading an unofficial history of the events leading up to the Great Transformation, her status is placed in jeopardy. She makes a dangerous decision and risks revealing her own secrets from the past.

Tune in to listen to a radio interview on The Authors Show on June 7th. The show will be available all day. Note: Scroll down and click on the title in blue.

Sign up for the “So I’ve Got These Ashes and Need To Do Something With Them” Cruise

Wondering what to do with the “cremains” of a loved one? Send them off with a memorial at sea. Join Jesse Kalfel, author of So You’re Cremated . . . Now What?, for an ash scattering ceremony off the Newburyport coastline on Saturday, September 26, on board the Yankee Clipper.

Organized in collaboration with Harbor Tours, Newburyport, Kalfel’s unusual ocean cruise coincides with the launch of his book.

“We must, as human beings, have a ritual and a little more. We need that memorializing,” said Kalfel. “Many people struggle with how to achieve that when there’s not a traditional burial or funeral ceremony.”

When his 97-year-old mother expressed her wish to be cremated rather than buried, Kalfel was inspired to research and consider the options for handling cremated remains, whether they’re one’s own or the ashes of a loved one. And his lighthearted book presents information and ideas in a way that makes the serious topic so approachable that it could end up being the central conversation for your next family reunion or a night out with friends.

Kalfel’s So I’ve Got These Ashes And Need To Do Something With Them cruise provides a way for people to memorialize their loved ones, including pets, with a nondenominational ceremony at sea. It also provides an opportunity for people who had ashes left to them with no instructions. Participants are encouraged to bring photos to share with others on board.

The cruise will depart from the west end of the Newburyport Boardwalk (next to the Black Cow Restaurant) at 10:30 am on Saturday, September 26. The first 40 people to register will be able to join this cruise. The cost is $25.00. All proceeds go towards the cost of hiring the boat for the occasion.

If you are interested in participating, contact Jesse at events@crematednowwhat.com.

To learn more about Kalfel’s book, visit http://www.creamtednowwhat.com.

For more information about Harbor Cruises, visit http://www.harbortours.com.

Leaving Religion, Following Jesus

Leaving Religion, Following Jesus
by Ronnie McBrayer

Review by Barry Hunter
Baryon Online Magazine

There are two topics I try to avoid in conversations unless my hand is forced. Politics is the first one. Religion is the other. Before going into the review, I would recommend that anyone who has a problem with ‘organized religion’ give this book a read and decide if you want religion or if you want to know Jesus better.

Ronnie McBrayer managed to leave the confines of North Georgia to leave the religion that he grew up with and follow the Jesus that made his life more fulfilling. This book could and should be used as a text in a class to help you understand the teachings of Jesus in the context of modern living. McBrayer converts the parables and teachings into modern day equivalences and makes it very easy to understand and gives you plenty of time to understand it. Each chapter ends with some reflection questions to make sure you understand what was discussed in the chapter.

The conversion of Jesus teachings by McBrayer is well done and makes them easy to understand. This is a book written for all age groups and will explain how it can be easy to be LEAVING RELIGION, and FOLLOWING JESUS.

Good Night & God Bless

GOOD NIGHT & GOD BLESS
A Guide to Convent & Monastery Accommodation In Europe
Volume 1: Austria, Czech Republic, Italy

by Trish Clark

Good Night & God Bless dropped into my hands directly from heaven on the wings of angels, or so it seemed. In it, Trish Clark gives us heavenly insider information on convent and monastery accommodations in three of the most romantic and picturesque countries in Europe: Austria, the Czech Republic, and…ah!…Italy. The actual hard information in the margins is so complete and good that it preempts questions arising from her wonderful descriptions of these remarkable lodging opportunities in the main text. The author even divides information for readers seeking spiritual retreats or those just wanting to soak up the ambiance of these sacred places.

You don’t have to be a monk to sleep in a 13th century monastery in Tuscany, with a balcony overlooking a quiet, rose-clustered cloister garden — or a nun to breakfast on coffee with steamed milk and just-out-of-the-oven pastries in a 500-year-old Austrian convent. Good Night & God Bless makes accessible fabled places that only the clergy and their friends knew about in times past. But more than that, the book educates us on the origins of these splendid institutions and the rich historical context in which they are set.

Whether you are planning a trip or just wanting to travel from the couch, get hold of Good Night & God Bless and read it from cover to cover — it really is a blessing.

Joseph Dispenza

Author of The Way of the Traveler: Making Every Trip a Journey of Self-Discovery and God On Your Own: Finding a Spiritual Path Outside Religion. Joseph is in private practice as a spiritual counselor at LifePath Retreats in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. http://www.lifepathretreats.com