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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Remembering Aubrey Hampton

I hadn't heard.  Aubrey Hampton, founder of Aubrey Organics, died on May 9 in Tampa, FL after a short illness according to this blog.  The natural ingredients guru contributed so much to our industry that I felt compelled to honor his life here.  I'd never met Mr. Hampton personally, but when I spotted his pioneering bible Natural Organic Hair and Skin Care at Half Price Books in the late 80's I remember snatching it up thinking....some fool gave THIS up?  Wow.  Their pain, my gain!   I still have that book in my reference library today.  I also remember being thrilled when my friend Donna Maria, founder of Indie Beauty Network, had him on one of her informative Beauty Calls, and I was even lucky enough to catch one of his rare TV appearances a few years back.

Besides being impressed by his incredible working knowledge of natural and organic cosmetic ingredients, (way before green was "in" I might add)....and what to avoid, I remember that he was a snappy dresser which gave him a certain touch of class.  Most importantly though, he was a profoundly gifted teacher.  A man of great vision.

Thank you Aubrey for your huge contributions to the world of natural cosmetics!  I hope you know how much you inspired myself and others.  And I hope you're able to stir up a few organic creams and lotions in that big laboratory in the sky.

Monday, May 23, 2011

The Green Thing

In the line at the store, the cashier told the older woman that she should
bring her own grocery bags because plastic bags weren't good for the

The woman apologized to him and explained, "We didn't have the green thing back in my day."

The clerk responded, "That's our problem today. The former generation didn't care enough to save our environment!"

He was right, that generation didn't have the green thing in its day.  Back
then, they returned their milk bottles, soda bottles and beer bottles to the
store. The store sent them back to the plant to be washed and sterilized and
refilled, so it could use the same bottles over and over. So they really
were recycled.

But they didn't have the green thing back in that customer's day.  In her
day, they walked up stairs, because they didn't have an escalator in every
store and office building. They walked to the grocery store and didn't climb
into a 300-horsepower machine every time they had to go two blocks.

But she was right. They didn't have the green thing in her day.

Back then, they washed the baby's diapers because they didn't have the
throw-away kind. They dried clothes on a line, not in an energy gobbling
machine burning up 220 volts - wind and solar power really did dry the

Kids got hand-me-down clothes from their brothers or sisters, not always
brand-new clothing.

But that old lady is right; they didn't have the green thing back in her

Back then, they had one TV or radio, in the house - not a TV in every room.
And the TV had a small screen the size of a handkerchief, not a screen the
size of the state of Montana . In the kitchen, they blended and stirred by
hand because they didn't have electric machines to do everything for you.
When they packaged a fragile item to send in the mail, they used a wadded up old newspaper to cushion it, not Styrofoam or plastic bubble wrap.

Back then, they didn't fire up an engine and burn gasoline just to cut the
lawn. They used a push mower that ran on human power. They exercised by
working so they didn't need to go to a health club to run on treadmills that
operate on electricity.

But she's right; they didn't have the green thing back then.

They drank from a fountain when they were thirsty instead of using a cup or
a plastic bottle every time they had a drink of water.

They refilled their writing pens with ink instead of buying a new pen, and
they replaced the razor blades in a razor instead of throwing away the whole
razor just because the blade got dull.

But they didn't have the green thing back then.

Back then, people took the streetcar or a bus and kids rode their bikes to
school or rode the school bus instead of turning their moms into a 24-hour
taxi service.

They had one electrical outlet in a room, not an entire bank of sockets to
power a dozen appliances.

And they didn't need a computerized gadget to receive a signal beamed from
satellites 2,000 miles out in space in order to find the nearest pizza

But isn't it sad the current generation laments how wasteful the old folks
were, just because they didn't have the green thing back then?  - author unknown

(This really hit home with me...does that mean I'm getting old?)

Friday, May 13, 2011

Tear Down Those Walls!

This dandy little 24’ travel trailer is going to be our home away from home for the next year or two (hopefully not three!) while we tear down our existing owner built home and rebuild it ...say what?  Most people look at me like I’ve gone stark raving mad when I say this.  And maybe I have...but something's gotta give.  Yes, it looks perfectly charming and utterly picturesque to the untrained eye, but it's not so much when you get up close and personal with it.   It definitely has issues.  Never ending issues.
So pardon me if I’m not around as much as I'd like to be.  With 2 businesses to run and 2 major construction projects underway ...we're going to have our hands full to say the least.   Remember, we're helping our son build his house right now too.   Don't worry, we plan to switch off between the two.   When you're on the "pay as you go plan" it kinda works out that way anyway.

Thankfully, we’ve learned a whole lot over the years.   I still don't want a big house, but I do want a nicer house.  And this time we’ll get it jussst right.   I’m sure of it…because there'll be no next time!  We're not getting any younger ya know.

So do YOU think I'm crazy?   What's the biggest project you've ever tackled?  How'd it turn out?