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HEALTHY LIVING HEALTHY PLANET feel good live simply laugh more




Raising Healthy and Eco-Friendly Kids How to Forage for



YOUR LIFE Go Inward to Find Peace


SCHOOL Reigniting Love of Learning


| Mobile / Baldwin Edition |

MASTERS OF YOGA & PILATES Yoga is an immortal art, science, and philosophy. It is the best subjective psychoanatomy of mankind ever conceived for the experience of physical, mental, intellectual, and spiritual well-being. It has stood the test of time from the beginning of civilization and it will remain supreme as a precise psycho-physical science for centuries to come. -B.K.S. Iyengar






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Dana B. Garrett MS, ACSM, RYT PhysicalMind Institute Stott IM and IR Certified

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3152 Old Shell Road, Suite 2 Mobile, Alabama 36607

2065 B Old Shell Rd at Upham

251.473.1104 2

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letterfrompublisher Maintaining a healthy and planet-friendly lifestyle is a challenge for just about everyone. It takes disciplined, responsible habits to incorporate the essential ingredients of regular exercise, restful sleep and healthy eating into busy lives. Not to mention fulfilling such principles as reduce, reuse and recycle, live simply and, above all, be happy.

contact us Publisher Meredith Montgomery Editors Linda Sechrist, Barbara Amrhein, Theresa Archer, Beth Davis Design Michael Wilson Local Ad Sales 251-990-9552 P.O. Box 725 Fairhope, AL 36533 Phone: 251-990-9552 Fax: 251-281-2375 Multi-Market Advertising 239-449-8309 Franchise Sales 239-530-1377 © 2010 by Natural Awakenings. All rights reserved. Although some parts of this publication may be reproduced and reprinted, we require that prior permission be obtained in writing. Natural Awakenings is a free publication distributed locally and is supported by our advertisers. It is available in selected stores, health and education centers, healing centers, public libraries and wherever free publications are generally seen. Please call to find a location near you or if you would like copies placed at your business. We do not necessarily endorse the views expressed in the articles and advertisements, nor are we responsible for the products and services advertised. We welcome your ideas, articles and feedback. SUBSCRIPTIONS Subscriptions are available by sending $24 (for 12 issues) to the above address.

But our son Mays seems to have mastered such a naturally holistic lifestyle. He just celebrated his first birthday and is one of the healthiest and greenest people I know. He is happiest with cloth diapers, cloth wipes and burp cloths, and so contributes very little to the local landfill. His preferred method of disposal for any unwanted food at mealtime is tossing it to our three dogs. Whatever doesn’t wind up in their eager mouths ends up in the compost bin. Mays’ meals are usually homemade from natural and organic ingredients. Regularly shopping farmers’ markets with me and helping nurture our own garden, he eats locally grown foods whenever possible, with any to-go meals packed in reusable glass containers. Most of Mays’ clothes are gently-used hand-me-downs. When his wardrobe needs an update or he outgrows his toys, he patronizes one of several nearby kids’ consignment shops on the Eastern Shore. Like most kids, Mays is naturally active; when he’s not sleeping or eating, he’s on the move. His preferred modes of transportation are a stroller, the back of Dad’s bike and, most recently, his own two feet. All who know Mays are enchanted with his yoga demonstrations throughout the day, presenting poses such as forward fold, upward-facing dog, and bound angle. Inverted positions seem to be his favorites. With assistance from Dad, Mays enjoys the health benefits of hanging upside down from his feet for a bit almost daily. The abdominal workout he gets from the endless giggles in this position is an added perk to this part of his daily workout. At the end of his active day, Mays likes to get 12 hours of sleep. Just before he goes to bed he enjoys a soothing bath using 100 percent natural, organic soap and shampoo. The first year of Mays’ life inspired this month’s local feature, “Growing Up Green,” on page 18. Many of these simple tips apply to any household, with or without children, and reflect the choices we make as a family to maintain a healthy lifestyle within our home. We can all be enlightened by younger generations who inspire us in making more progressive choices in our daily lives. It’s never too late to start growing up green. In peace and gratitude,

Meredith Montgomery

Looking for an old issue?


August 2010


Stand Out in the Crowd!

contents Natural Awakenings is your guide to a healthier, more balanced life. In each issue readers find cutting-edge information on natural health, nutrition, fitness, personal growth, green living, creative expression and the products and services that support a healthy lifestyle.



Forage Local Lands

for Free Goodies by Steve Brill


Be in Demand! Fortis College students complete 1060 HOURS of comprehensive training, more than any other massage therapy training program on the Gulf Coast!

Eastern Influences • Thai Massage • Reiki Neuromuscular • Deep Tissue • Orthopedic Swedish • Spa Therapies • Sports Massage

FORTIS COLLEGE (251) 344-1203 3590 Pleasant Valley Road Mobile, AL 36609

UP GREEN Tips for Raising Healthy and Environmentally Conscious Kids by Meredith Montgomery


BABY’S BOTTOM Cloth Makes a Comeback by Barb Amrhein



FOR HEALTH A Fun Way to Get a Groove On

by Ellen Mahoney


Restoring and Maintaining Calm by Mary Wulff


IN ACTION Educating Students to

Think, Create, Initiate


1 Hour Massage, only $25 Friday or Saturday appointments Some weekday appts now available! “Leading the Way in Health Care & Massage Therapy Training.” 4

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Now a Film Starring Julia Roberts by Leah Ingram



8 localspotlight

9 globalbriefs

12 healingways

Coming in September

13 inspiration

14 healthbriefs 16 consciouseating

14 26

22 greenliving


24 fitbody

26 naturalpet

33 wisewords

advertising & submissions how to advertise To advertise with Natural Awakenings or request a media kit, please contact us at 251-990-9552 or email Deadline for ads: the 10th of the month prior to the month of publication. Editorial submissions Email articles, news items and ideas to: MobilePublisher@ Deadline for editorial: the 5th of the month prior to the month of publication. calendar submissions Submit Calendar Events online at Deadline for calendar: the 10th of the month prior to the month of publication. regional markets Advertise your products or services in multiple markets! Natural Awakenings Publishing Corp. is a growing franchised family of locally owned magazines serving communities since 1994. To place your ad in other markets call 239-449-8309. For franchising opportunities call 239-530-1377 or visit

Natural Awakenings Explores How


Expression Heals Us, Lifts Our Spirits, Makes Us Feel Good, & Inspires Community

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251-990-9552 natural awakenings

August 2010


newsbriefs Local Foods Group Launches Community Garden

Applications for garden plots are now being accepted for the Local Food Production Initiative’s (LFPI) first community garden in Fairhope, located within Homestead Village. For those interested in learning more about the community garden and how to participate, a public meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m., August 16, in the United Methodist Church’s Christian Life Center, in Fairhope. According to Elaine Snyder-Conn, head of LFPI’s community garden committee, the initial garden will contain 20 raised plots. The application process is open to all Fairhope residents, and a drawing will be conducted on August 31 to determine which 20 applicants will be awarded a space in the garden. The remaining applicants will be placed on a waiting list. A conceptual design for the garden showing the layout for the initial plots, as well as additional plots and various amenities being considered for future development, can be viewed on LFPI’s website. Location: 924 Plantation Blvd., Fairhope 36532. For information, call Jo Ann Wettlaufer at 251-928-8646 or visit

Shelton Academy Open House J.B. Shelton Academy middle and high school, now in its 15th year, will host an Open House and Meet the Teacher from 9 to 11 a.m., August 9 and 10. The event is open to anyone interested in visiting the newly renovated school, and registration for 2010 will also take place on those dates. Shelton Academy is a fullyaccredited private school, offering an alternative approach to education with one-on-one instruction for grades 5 through 12. Tuition is $400 per month and $350 per month for a second child, with a $150 registration fee and $150 unlimited book rental fee. Location: 1050 Hillcrest Road, Mobile 36695. For information, call 251-6391311 or visit See article on page 32.

Adding Years to Your Life and Life to Your Years

Conscious Mile Center for Spiritual Living will host “Living Longer and Loving It: How to Add More Years to Your Life, and Life to Your Years,” a workshop with Betty Sue O’Brian, from 9 to 10:30 a.m., August 14. In an effort to create more awareness of organic solutions to health issues, nutrition, conscious-connected breathing, chakra balancing and essential oil therapy, the workshop will focus on the overall health and well-being of body, mind and spirit. The tuition is a “love offering,” a contribution based on the individual value each participant feels they received from the program. Lunch will be available at the conclusion of the workshop. O’Brian, a traditional naturopath and health trainer, has been teaching for more than 30 years. Certified in raw foods and as an iridology practitioner, she will offer one-onone iridology readings after the workshop for a fee. Private sessions must be scheduled in advance. Cost: $15 for lunch, with reservation required. Location: 1230 Montlimar Drive, Mobile 36609. For information, call Judy at 251-656-6696, Sue at 251-232-2292, or visit See ad on page 23.

Oil Spill Recovery Fund Established

In response to the Gulf oil spill, the Weeks Bay Foundation has established a recovery fund to aid in the efforts of protecting the important natural resources of coastal Alabama. Donations are tax-deductible and will be utilized by the Weeks Bay Foundation’s restricted oil spill fund. The Foundation is a nonprofit organization supporting the Weeks Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve in protecting the pristine coastal area of Baldwin County. A strong advocate for the reserve, the foundation has more than 550 members. To make a donation, visit or send checks to Weeks Bay Foundation – Oil Spill Recovery, 11401 U.S. Highway 98, Fairhope 36532.


NA Mobile / Baldwin Edition

Anusara Workshop at Yoga Birds

Certified Anusara yoga instructor Cat McCarthy will lead The Rasas: Taste the Full Spectrum of Life, a workshop at Yoga Birds on August 28 and 29. Classes being offered throughout the weekend include “Courageous Inversions and Twists,” “Wondrous Backbends and Forward Folds,” “Heroic Hip Openers and Arm Balances” and “The Rasa Practice.” Cost varies per workshop. Location: 458-B North Section Street, Fairhope 36532. For information and registration, call 251-990-3447 or visit See ad on page 2.

Baldwin County Environmental Educator Training

The Baldwin County Extension Office is seeking volunteers to participate in the Master Environmental Educator program, a two-day training session held August 19 and 20 at Weeks Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve. The session will cover such topics as aquatic nuisance species, backyard wildlife habitat, groundwater pollution, invasive plant species, non-point source pollution, recycling and the water cycle. All information and resource materials will be provided. No previous teaching experience or knowledge is required for the program. Once trained, the master environmental educators are asked to donate 20 hours a year to teach environmental awareness throughout the county. Emily Kling, of the Alabama Cooperative Extension System, developed the program in 1995 to give Baldwin County residents an opportunity to understand and appreciate the environment in their own backyards. Location: 11300 U.S. Highway 98, Fairhope 36532. For information, call 251-937-7176 or 251-943-5061 or visit

Organic Alabama Milk

Working Cows Dairy, in Slocomb, is now offering USDA Organic Grade A pasteurized milk. After a three-year certification process, Working Cows is the first certified organic dairy in Alabama. Sold by the gallon, the milk is available at the farm and the Windmill Market in Fairhope. Home to grass-fed cows, this family owned and operated farm uses a low temperature pasteurization process that allows more of the good bacteria that lives in the milk to be preserved, resulting in a healthier product. Location: 5539 North State Highway, Slocomb 36375. For information, call 334-886-3839 or visit

Fairhope Teacher Receives National Award

Fairhope High School (FHS) aquascience teacher Megan O’Neill has received the Presidential Award of Excellence in Math and Science Teaching from the National Science Foundation. She is Alabama’s only recipient. O’Neill was one of 103 teachers nationwide to receive the $10,000 award, which recognizes the best pre-college-level science and mathematics teachers from across the country. The recognitions were announced by President Barack Obama and will be presented in Washington D.C. later this year. O’Neill, who received her master’s degree in education from the University of South Alabama, has been teaching aquascience at FHS since 2003. During that time, she has developed and implemented many hands-on programs for her students. “I want to show my students how many things are possible in the sciences,” she says. “I want to show them how important marine science and aquascience are to all of us.” Location: 1 Pirate Drive, Fairhope 36532. For information, call 251-928-8309 or

Reptiles Are All the Rage

Live reptiles are creeping, crawling and slithering their way around the Gulf Coast Exploreum Science Center. Reptile Planet, the Exploreum’s latest traveling exhibit, is now open and features 30 exotic creatures from more than 20 different countries. “This exhibit is a great opportunity for both kids and kids-at-heart to better understand these often-feared creatures,” says Exploreum Assistant Director Caroline Etherton. In addition to close encounters with the live exotic reptiles on display, kids can enjoy hands-on components of the exhibit. Feeding demonstrations, photo opportunities and games are some additional highlights of Reptile Planet. While this exhibit is on display through October 24, the Exploreum is offering themed Reptile Romp birthday parties. Cost: adults $13, youth and seniors $11.50, children $11, members $1.25. Location: 65 Government Street, Mobile 36602. Open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday-Friday; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday; and noon to 5 p.m., Sunday. For information, call 251-208-6852 or visit

Crab Apple Market Now Open in Mobile

Selling local products whenever possible, Crab Apple Market is now open and stocked with fresh produce and seafood. According to owner Melissa Johnson, they also offer Alabama Home Products, Amish Wedding Foods and frozen prepared seafood items from Coden. Location: 9180 Airport Blvd., Mobile 36608 (2.5 miles west of Schillinger Road). Hours: 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday-Friday; 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday; and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday. For information, call 251-635-0067. See ad on page 24. natural awakenings

August 2010


localspotlight Healing with Essences A Conversation with Craig and Lisa Kalloch of Middle Earth Healing and Learning Center by Meredith Montgomery


isa and Craig Kalloch, the owners of Middle Earth Healing and Learning Center, follow a sustainable, Earth-guided way of life. Here, they share insights with Natural Awakenings readers into the potential uses of their newest line of essences, which offer physical, emotional and spiritual balance. How did you find your new Wisdom of the Earth (WOTE) essences? Lisa: I saw a reference to WOTE when I was on Drunvalo Melchizedek’s website, and that initially peaked my interest. Last summer, I began to have a frequent, irregular heartbeat that was really scary. I visited the WOTE site, got in touch with founder Barry Kapp’s wife, Cynthia, and she recommended cardamom seed as an essential essence that would help with the irregularity. When the essence I ordered arrived, immediately upon applying it, I noticed the frequency of my irregular heartbeat had decreased. That was an amazing thing. After using the essence daily for months, I am no longer experiencing the skipped beats. What did you think of the training in Arizona to become WOTE-certified medicinal aromatherapists? Lisa: As part of the several levels of training that we received, we participated in the conscious harvesting of Douglas Fir [trees] and in the distillation process of 8

NA Mobile / Baldwin Edition

the plant material. Craig: We bought essential oils from four different companies until we discovered what sets WOTE apart from the others—their pureness and the human spirituality of pouring these essences into each bottle. Lisa: When the distilled oils are received at WOTE, each 15-milliliter bottle is hand-poured with ritual and ceremony by Barry and his apprentice, Richard. These pure essences are known for their high vibration and healing power and are about the relationships from the propagation or wildcrafting, to the distillation process, and especially to the ceremonial hand-pouring. What are the differences between an essential oil and an essential essence? Craig: They are the lifeblood of the plant. WOTE essences are 100 percent pure. They’re not oils—when you put them on the skin, they are immediately absorbed and go into the blood. There’s no oily feeling on the skin, so why not call them what they are—essential essences? Who can benefit most from these essences, and in what ways? Craig: There are so many different and simple ways to benefit. If someone has a disorder or disease in their physical or emotional or spiritual being, these essences will be able to balance that. Individually, these essences have a lot of different properties, but most have antibacte-

rial, antiviral and antifungal properties. They are also effective as preventive healthcare. I’ve applied essential oils everyday since we started using them in 1996 and I’ve never been sick since. Lisa: The use of these essences is also about trust. As a registered nurse, it’s been a real shift for me to be able to put all my training in allopathic or traditional medicine in the background. I’m working on developing my trust relationship with the plants and trees, which according to the Bible, are available to us for our health and well-being. Craig: We became master distributors because we knew that these essences were going to benefit many, many, many people. Are there any final thoughts from Middle Earth that you’d like to leave with our readers? Lisa: As Mother Earth continues her shifting, we need to remember and return to the original medicine of the planet: the plants and trees. Through this deep connection with them, and with their lifeessence, we can be whole again. Consultations and classes are available at Middle Earth, a retreat and learning center dedicated to the practice of Deep Ecology. Location: 20205 Middle Earth Road, in Citronelle. For more information, visit or call 251-866-7204. See ad on page 21.

globalbriefs Kindergarten Crisis

Why Children Need to Play in School Time for play in most public kindergartens has dwindled to the vanishing point, replaced by lengthy lessons and standardized testing, according to three recent studies released by the nonprofit Alliance for Childhood. This group of advocates for children reports that classic play materials have largely disappeared from the 268 full-day conventional classrooms studied. Authors of the research hail from the University of California, Los Angeles, Long Island University and Sarah Lawrence College, in New York. In sounding the warning about the potential intellectual, social and physical repercussions of this widespread educational policy on childhood development, they also point to the academic success associated with play-based schooling in other countries. Students in China and Japan, often heralded for their aptitudes in science, technology, engineering and math, enjoy a play-based experiential approach to school until second grade. Children in Finland, who don’t begin formal schooling until age 6, consistently achieve the highest score on international exams.

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Report Card

Students Like to Pick Green Colleges In The Princeton Review’s latest College Hopes & Worries Survey, 68 percent of students said they value having information about a college’s commitment to the environment. From a pool of almost 700 U.S. colleges and universities, the organization identified the country’s 371 exemplary green colleges of 2010 (up from 286 in 2009). Key criteria include a healthy and sustainable quality of life on campus, preparation for employment in a world facing environmental challenges and overall commitment to environmental issues. Fifteen institutions made the 2010 honor roll. The role models setting the standard are in Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Pennsylvania, Vermont and Washington. The Sustainable Endowments Institute, too, offers its College Sustainability Report Card. This in-depth eco-profile for 332 colleges in the United States and Canada also evaluates how each profiled institution invests its endowment assets. The site allows viewers to instantly compare selected schools in nine categories. In 2010, the group recognized 80 extraordinarily green schools and saluted 26 as “top of their class” in endowment allocation.

6/1/10 1:42 PM

All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once they grow up. ~ Pablo Picasso

Visit and natural awakenings

August 2010


globalbriefs News and resources to inspire concerned citizens to work together in building a healthier, stronger society that benefits all.

Infant Morality

Gulf Aid

Text-Message Giving Helps Rescue Oil-Soaked Wildlife In a recent Cone marketing agency survey, 19 percent of Americans said that they would rather text a donation to a nonprofit than make a donation in any other way, and the method is particularly popular among youth. It’s a fundraising tool now on the radar of every major U.S. charity, according to Christian Zimmern, co-founder of the nonprofit Mobile Giving Foundation (MGF). Zimmern notes that “we have 260 million cell phones in the United States,” while The New York Times reports that almost 90 percent of U.S. households now have a cell phone. He points out that this means that givers need not be a member of any online pay system, nor use a credit card; “You just need your phone.” MGF first qualifies charities, then facilitates a coordinated link with telecommunications carriers. The latest pressing cause to benefit from text-message giving are rescue operations for 400 species of wildlife from the life-threatening effects of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Birds, fish, reptiles and marine mammals urgently need help. The National Wildlife Federation ( is asking cell phone users to text “Wildlife” to 20222 to donate $10 to try to save the animals. Source: The Christian Science Monitor. Details at

Psychologists Find Babies Know Right from Wrong

New research counters the prevailing theory that babies arrive in this world as a blank slate. Research using mini puppet plays at Yale University’s Infant Cognition Center in Connecticut shows that infants between six and 10 months old can consistently differentiate between helpful and unhelpful behaviors, indicating that humans are born with innate moral judgment. “Some sense of good and evil seems to be bred in the bone,” says Paul Bloom, a professor of psychology who led the study.

Teachers’ Aid

Good Samaritans Boost the Quality of Classroom Teaching Despite billions of federal stimulus dollars allocated for qualifying schools this year, tens of thousands of teachers are flocking to online charities like, DonorsChoose. com, and for help in securing essential classroom tools and supplies. Needed items range widely, from books and calculators to paper, pencils and microscope slides. In many districts, school budgets cannot cover the cost of all the classroom supplies needed, so a teacher will pay several hundred dollars a year from his or her own pocket to keep the classroom equipped. Given today’s pay freezes, job insecurity and school program cuts, individual donors are stepping up to widen the circle of support and fill a local teacher’s specified wish list, reports Judy McClellan, spokesperson for another teacher help site, Donations of extra office equipment and household art materials are also welcome. 10

NA Mobile / Baldwin Edition

25th Anniversary International Youth Day is August 12 This year United Nations International Year of Youth activities will focus on dialogue and mutual understanding in order to advance the full and effective participation of youth in all aspects of society. Info:

Online Guidance

Sun Smart

Great Websites for Any Age Googling Yahoo’s “Yahooligans for kids,” and the Association for Library Service to Children’s “2010 notable children’s books” pulls up wonderful websites, as does visiting, for its listen-along children’s stories that build values, but how do families always know which Internet resources to trust? Sometimes it’s hard to tell what’s safe, where the hidden treasures are and what’s a waste of time. The American Library Association has published How to Tell if You Are Looking at a Great Web Site to help. Great sites share meaningful and useful content that educates, informs or entertains in a way that is appropriate to their stated purpose; they both enrich the user’s experience and expand the imagination. The best sites have personality and strength of character, are easy to use, and will not require the user to pay a fee or type in personal information in order to use them. It’s important that the primary website and any linked site clearly note its sponsors and authors, who will both invite and respond to guest comments and suggestions. A great site will not knowingly violate copyright or other laws, and will not list, link to or recommend resources that do. For details visit

Humane Youth

Compassion for Animals Aids Diet Changes

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention now estimates that one in 200 children is a practicing vegetarian, according to the parents polled. also reports that earlier surveys suggest the rate of vegetarianism among older teens could be four to six times that of younger children, because teens have more control over what they eat. Animal welfare, rather than health, is cited most often as to why kids stop eating meat.

Transcontinental Run

National Campaign Introduces Naturopathy to America Doctors, medical students, patients and other advocates of naturopathic medicine from 50 states are planning a public education campaign that will take to the streets July 17, 2011, for a 3,250-mile run from San Francisco to Bridgeport, Connecticut, by way of Washington, D.C., and New York City. Former transcontinental runner and founder of the R.U.N., Dr. Dennis Godby, intends that the four-month-long event will familiarize citizens with natural medicine and move them to demand access to and state licensing of doctors of natural medicine. For event details visit

Sunscreens Still Fall Short on Safety The nonprofit Environmental Working Group has reported some success in its campaign to improve sunscreens. As of last year, 70 percent of sunscreens contained strong UVA filters, compared with 29 percent the year before, and 19 percent fewer sunscreens contained oxybenzone, which government data has linked to hormone disruption. Still, EWG scientists can recommend only 39 of 500 beach and sport sunscreens on the market this summer. That’s just 8 percent that earn a green light both for protecting skin against sun damage and excluding hazardous chemicals in favor of UV-blocking minerals, with zinc a better choice than titanium. A new problem is that one in six sunscreens promotes exaggerated SPF claims of greater than 50, which may give a false sense of protection and encourage overexposure to direct sunlight. Another is the presence of a vitamin A compound named retinyl palmitate, found in 41 percent of sunscreens and linked to skin tumors and lesions in government research. “Many sunscreens available in the United States may be the equivalent of modern-day snake oil,” concludes Jane Houlihan, EWG’s senior vice president for research. EWG continues to recommend that people resort to hats, clothing and shade for primary protection from the sun’s ultraviolet rays. Look up ratings for sunscreens, moisturizers and lip balms at ewg. org/2010sunscreen.

natural awakenings

August 2010



has been tested for mercury and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs).

KIDS’ VITAMIN GUIDE high doses, but youngsters still need it. A child can get the recommended 10 mg by eating meat, spinach or fortified cereals, advises Marilyn Tanner, a registered and pediatric dietitian at St. Louis Children’s Hospital. She notes that menstruating girls, who need 15 mg daily, are a possible exception.

VITAMIN A Although vitamin A aids immunity and healthy vision, taking too much can be toxic to the liver and can leave bones prone to fracture, advises Goldin. A safer option is beta-carotene, which converts to vitamin A in the body, is water soluble and can be excreted, unlike fat-soluble, preformed vitamin A (palmitate or retinol palmitate). Pick a kids’ multi with vitamin A obtained solely through 2,100 IU beta-carotene.

FOLIC ACID Essential for growth and the production of red blood cells (as well as healthy gums, skin and hair), folic acid supports nervous system function and repairs DNA damaged by toxins. It also may help protect against leukemia and other types of cancer. A typical kids’ dose is 75-150 micrograms (mcg) daily.

VITAMIN C During cold and flu season, increase children’s daily vitamin C intake to at least 1 gram, counsels Lieberman. Or add a gentle blend of herbs, such as echinacea (Echinacea purpurea) and astragalus (Astragalus membranaceus), an Asian root commonly used as a tonic in traditional Chinese medicine.

OMEGA 3 Fish oil is not a food that tykes typically go for, but buy a fruit-flavored product and your little one will gulp it down. Packed with docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), Lieberman notes that the omega3s in fish oil help boost brain and eye development and decrease the risk of aggression, depression and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Read labels to ensure that the fish oil

VITAMIN D Growing bones need vitamin D, which is found in fortified milk and can be gained through sun exposure—part of why outdoor playtime is important. For families who live in a cloudy climate, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that kids take a daily supplement of 800-1,000 IU of vitamin D.

by Carlotta Mast


ost kids are more likely to grab a French fry than a broccoli floret. Fortunately, a children’s-specific, high-quality multivitamin can help provide crucial, missing nutrients, as well as build an early shield against diabetes, heart disease and childhood cancers, according to the writings of Shari Lieberman, Ph.D., a clinical nutritionist often cited for her bestselling The Real Vitamin and Mineral Book. But do children need additional supplements, and how do parents know which ones to choose? The natural health experts we tapped pinpoint the nutrients kids need and what to look for on a label. CALCIUM With just 20-100 milligrams (mg) of calcium, most children’s multis don’t come close to packing in the required amount they need daily (800 mg for ages 4 to 8; 1,300 mg for kids over 9). If children don’t drink organic dairy or enriched soy milk, which contain 300 mg per cup, consider supplementing with two daily doses. IRON Many multis don’t contain iron because it can be harmful if taken in 12

NA Mobile / Baldwin Edition

PROBIOTICS Adults aren’t the only ones who need healthy gut flora—supplying children’s digestive system with probiotics (good bacteria) may boost their immunity by maintaining a healthy balance within the gastrointestinal tract, says Tara Skye Goldin, a naturopathic doctor in Boulder, Colorado. In a 2005 study, people who took daily probiotics supplements for at least three months experienced shorter and less severe colds. Chewable probiotics are now made specifically for kids. Aim for 5 to 10 billion live microorganisms daily, or serve Lactobacillus acidophilus-rich yogurt.

Carlotta Mast is editor of the Nutrition Business Journal.


Four Ways to Light(en) Up Your Life by Isha Judd


n an increasingly unpredictable world where anxiety and insecurity abound, where can we turn to find peace and happiness? The simple answer is: within ourselves. Here’s how.

1. Get present When you find yourself in the midst of a worrisome situation, stop. Go inward, and ask yourself, “What is wrong in this moment?” Usually, nothing is wrong at that time. It is when we stray off into past regrets and future concerns that anxiety kicks in; don’t deny the problems that you are facing, but don’t get lost in them, either. Being in the present will bring you greater alertness and inner security, allowing you to face challenges more objectively and with greater calm. 2. Laugh at yourself When you realize that you are obsessing over a concern or a worry, laugh at yourself. Just look up at the sky and think, “Oh! I’m doing it again.” When you don’t take yourself so seriously, you immediately disarm the worry and anxiety of the human intellect. This will help you take stock of the situation and reassess things more clearly. 3. Go with the flow As adults, we lose the ability to flow. We cling to the idea of what we want

and fight against the current of life, because we think that securing what we want is what is going to make us happy. But that’s not the truth; our happiness depends upon the wisdom of the choices we make in each moment. Ask yourself, “Am I choosing to be happy, or am I fighting for what I want? Am I attached to an idea or am I willing to flow?”

4. Take responsibility for your own happiness “If only he or she wasn’t so… then, I could be happy.” Does this sound familiar? We are so dependent on the behaviors of others that whenever they aren’t doing what we want them to, we suffer. If your happiness depends upon others, you are setting yourself up for disappointment. People continually change and things are never exactly the way we expect them to be. Stop trying to change others so that you can be happy. Instead, focus on praising and appreciating the people around you. Isha Judd is an internationally renowned spiritual teacher and author; her book and movie, Why Walk When You Can Fly? explain her system for selflove and the expansion of consciousness. Learn more at WhyWalk

art by mer petportraits byMeredithMontgomery

Specializing in Original Portraits Painted from Photos of your Pet Gift Certificates Are Available

natural awakenings

August 2010



Microwave Popcorn Toxicity Study


opcorn is one of the add-ons that rarely fails to make watching a movie more fun, but the modern way of preparing this popular snack may harbor an unhappy secret. Research by the U.S. government now reports that microwave popcorn may contain chemicals that can cause health problems. At issue is that commercial popcorn companies often coat their microwave popcorn bags with a chemical called perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) which has been found to cause both cancer and lung disease in laboratory animals. Making matters worse, the butter substitute that generally accompanies microwavable popcorn contains a chemical called diacetyl, a common food-flavoring agent that, according to health scientists, is responsible for bronchiolitis obliterans, a serious, debilitating lung disease. For an easy and fun healthy alternative, nutritionists suggest that we pop our own popcorn. All that’s needed is a large, high pot, about four tablespoons of peanut or canola oil and a small handful of organic popcorn kernels. When the kernels start popping, shake the pot to let the steam escape and to let the unpopped kernels fall to the bottom. As soon as the popping slows down, remove the pot from the stove, pour the popcorn into a bowl, season with a small amount of real butter or olive oil and natural salt or brewer’s yeast to taste, et voilà, happy eating. Source:


oung people who listen to personal music players for several hours a day at high volume could be putting their hearing at risk, warns a study published online in the British Medical Journal. Researchers found that devices such as MP3 players can generate levels of sound directed at the ear in excess of 120 decibels, similar in intensity to a jet engine, especially when used with earphones inserted into the ear canal. Use of music devices has grown faster than health experts’ ability to assess potential health consequences such as long-term hearing loss, as well as their interference with concentration and performance, especially when driving. Such findings point out that today’s ubiquitous acceptance of technology in our lives must be accompanied by vigorous efforts to understand its impacts on our health and well-being, especially among youth.

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Rice is generally thought to be part of a healthy diet because it’s a good source of fiber, but not all rice is equally nutritious. Brown rice might have an advantage over white rice by offering protection from high blood pressure and atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), say researchers at the Cardiovascular Research Center and department of physiology at Temple University School of Medicine, in Philadelphia. The secret lies in the layer between the white center of the grain and the brown fibrous outer layer, which is milled away to produce white rice; it contains a component that works against angiotensin II, a known culprit in development of these health problems.

Just Say No to TV for Tots

Listen Up


Why Brown Rice is Better

Families who want kids to grow up thinner and smarter do well to keep them away from the television as toddlers. In a new study published in Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, Dr. Linda S. Pagani, a professor at the Université de Montréal and researcher at the Sainte-Justine University Hospital Research Center, concluded: “We found every additional hour of TV exposure among toddlers corresponded to a future decrease in classroom engagement and success at math, increased victimization by classmates, a more sedentary lifestyle, higher consumption of junk food and ultimately, a higher body mass index.”


Summer is the best time to enjoy freshly harvested lettuces, peas, avocados, berries and greens, all good sources of the B vitamins B-6 and folate. Associated benefits include lowered risk of death from stroke and heart disease in women and possible reduced risk of heart failure in men, according to Japanese research reported in Stroke, a journal of the American Heart Association.

Natural Sleep Aids for Kids


arious factors may cause a child’s sleeplessness, so before reaching for conventional drugs and sleep medications, parents may want to first consider changing a child’s bedtime routine. For example, try turning off the television and computer a couple of hours before bedtime to avoid overstimulation. It also helps to keep the child’s bedroom as calm and stress-free as possible; aromatherapy-scented pillows, soaps and lotions that work best include lavender, sage and chamomile. Homeopathic remedies are another option; practitioners advise that such gentler medications are usually well tolerated by children. Choices include Kali phosphoricum for overstimulation, Magnesium phosphoricum to calm a child and to relieve colic, and Passiflora incarnata for a child who is too tired to go to sleep. Another natural sleep aid is drinking an herbal tea made from chamomile, passion flower and valerian an hour before bedtime. Before implementing any herbal remedy for a good night’s sleep, parents should consult a certified herbalist to ensure they are administering it correctly for the child’s age and weight. Sources:,,

Veggies Help Protect Babies from Diabetes


recent study from the Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg, in Sweden, reveals that expectant mothers who eat vegetables every day give birth to children who are much less likely to develop Type 1 diabetes. Analysis of blood samples from almost 6,000 5-year-olds showed that children at risk of developing diabetes 1 have antibodies that attack insulin-producing cells, a risk marker that was up to twice as common in children whose mothers rarely ate vegetables during pregnancy. The university says this is the first study to show a direct link between vegetable intake during pregnancy and the risk of children then getting this disease.

localopinion Little Choices, Big Impacts Decreasing Oil Dependence, Increasing Community Well-Being by Wendy Allen Our coastal region has experienced a major environmental catastrophe in the Gulf and along the beaches and bayous. The recovery is going to be slow and will depend on the technical expertise of the oil companies, scientists and government. As citizens, it is hard to accept the fact that there is little we can do to stop the leak or clean up our waters and beaches. There seems to be a widespread sense of depression, frustration and anger, with no real outlet for release of these emotions. There already has been a suicide in Florida: a boat captain whose life was totally turned upside down by the disaster. There may be some things we can do, however, in our communities and our lives, that will focus our attention on what is important. One

step is to address our dependence on oil and oil products by adjusting our lifestyles to increase the health and well-being in our communities. Try walking or biking short distances to pick up the few things you need. Combine your car trips to cut down on the miles you travel. Talk to your neighbors to see how they are doing; it might save a life. Remember, if we work together to make our community stronger, our coastal area will survive. It will also get back on its feet with more active, involved citizens. Let’s offer our gifts to the community to make it healthy and sustainable. Wendy Allen is the executive director of Smart Coast, a local nonprofit. For more info, visit or call 251-510-8002.

natural awakenings

August 2010



WILD EDIBLES Forage Local Lands for Free Goodies by Steve Brill


ay, those plants along this path look good enough to eat. Well, maybe they are and perhaps we should eat them. There are thousands of plants of all types that can provide healthy, nutritious, organic meals we’ll never see in a grocery store or restaurant. Just don’t call them weeds. That’s only civilization’s erroneous name for the prolific, edible herbs, greens, berries, roots, nuts, seeds and mushrooms that sustain the neighborhood herbivores (including people). Yes, a few of them are not good for us, even poisonous, but with a little effort, we can easily tell the good from the bad and the ugly. Many of these overlooked treasures are more delicious than commercial produce. Consider the increasing appreciation of native heirloom varieties of vegetables; growing on their own, without artificial fertilizers or pesticides, their native nutrition value often exceeds that of hybrids grown for appearance and the ability to hold up under long-distance shipping. It is vital to avoid environmental toxins when foraging, so stay at least 50 feet away from highways and railroad tracks or anyplace that has been sprayed with chemicals. 16

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Identifying the plant you want with 100 percent certainty is also paramount. Don’t worry, it gets easier with practice, and easier still in the fall, when growth is mature and characteristics are more pronounced than in the spring. Another rule of thumb is to harvest where growth is abundant, and take only what’s needed. Foraging is not about stocking up or making money on a crop; it’s about our personal relationship with the Earth and sharing its bounty, so respect that. Picking up any scattered litter along the way also contributes to the benefits.

Shoots and Greens Wild greens are leafy vegetables, often excellent either raw or cooked. Shoots are edible stems, such as asparagus, which we usually cook. When we elect to eat both the stem and developing leaves, the distinction between shoots and greens becomes irrelevant. Seasons, like wild species, vary from place to place. Spring, summer and fall all begin at various times of year in different states, as well as in warm, sheltered spots, such as those with southern exposure, or next to a wall or boulder reflecting solar heat. Thus, just a few feet away from a meadow of dandelions in full flower, younger, even tastier ones might be growing, partially shaded by a wall. Dandelions, sheep sorrel and cattails grow all around the country, so let’s look at what they have to offer. Common Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale) One of the most nutritious of foods, dandelion leaves provide more vitamins A, C, E, K, and B complex, plus the minerals iron, calcium and potassium, than any

Eat Only What is Absolutely Identified Dandelion While everyone recognizes the dandelion’s radially configured, yellow flower composed of many long, strap-shaped ray petals, it’s more important to detect the leaves before the flowers appear. The dandelion is hairless, with a white, milky sap that pervades the entire plant, and the leaves grow up to 10 inches long and 2.5 inches wide. Large, sharp “teeth” point toward the leaf base (dente de lion is Old French for “tooth of the lion”). Sheep Sorrel The leaf looks like a sheep’s face—there’s a pointed “nose” at the tip, and two spreading “ears” (lobes) perpendicular to the arrow-shaped leaf’s broad base. Spreading via runners, this hairless plant begins as

commercial vegetable. Even the blossom provides vitamin A, calcium and magnesium. Sheep Sorrel (Rumex acetosella) Sheep sorrel provides vitamins A, D, E, B complex and C, calcium, iron, magnesium, sulfur, zinc, potassium and phosphorus plus the flavonoid rutin. Kids love this European perennial on account of its great flavor. Cattails (Typha spp.) Immature cattail flowers are a good source of protein and essential fatty acids (both rare in plants), as well as a number of trace minerals. The pollen provides the same nutrients, plus vitamin A. People pay premium prices for bee pollen, an energizer, in health food stores. Cattail pollen is identical, except that people, instead of bees, gather it, and it’s free.

Renewable Bounty Wild edibles are a renewable natural resource that requires no husbandry from mankind; all we have to do is not build houses and parking lots on top of them. In addition to providing nutritious food, many of these plants have a rich, global history as remedies and healing agents. They are the forerunners, and in some cases still the source of, virtually all modern medicines.

a basal rosette (circle of bottom leaves) 1.5 to 3 inches long, then develops a slender, branched, jointed flower and leafstalk, usually up to 9 inches tall, but sometimes as high as 14. Confirm field book identification by tasting a leaf; the distinct, attractive, lemon-like flavor accounts for the name sorrel, Old French for sour. Cattail One of the easiest wild edibles to recognize, cattail does resemble a cat’s tail (or a sausage). Its fuzzy, brown, cylindrical, mature flower head—a spike 1 inch across and up to 6 inches long—grows atop an erect, jointless stem 4 to 9 feet tall. Cattails spread mainly from underground rhizomes—long, horizontal, underground stems that give rise to many stalks. The seeds assure longrange dispersal.

Of course, use of pictures is essential in accurately identifying wild plants. My illustrated books and the Internet are handy and portable resources. A good place to start is and the Green Links section of my website. Nature provides us with an open-ended curriculum to study in every season. Exploring local parks and uncultivated areas shows what they have to offer. Foragers will return home embracing an abundance of viable vegetables at the height of their goodness, with a deeper feeling and appreciation for humanity’s role in Earth’s ecosystems that is unobtainable in any other kind of classroom. Steve “Wildman” Brill is a naturalist who specializes in edible and medicinal wild plants. He leads tours throughout the greater New York area for school, day camp and museum groups, as well as the general public. His books and DVDs include The Wild Vegetarian Cookbook. Connect at Wildman natural awakenings

August 2010


GROWING UP GREEN Tips for Raising Healthy and Environmentally Conscious Kids Being eco-friendly is not just about saving the planet; it’s also about creating a healthful environment for children today and for generations to come. Babies and children represent new beginnings and can inspire positive change in the lives of families. Lead by example and show younger generations how valuable and easy it is to live a healthy, environmentally friendly lifestyle.

by Meredith Montgomery


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Eat ResponsiblY

Eating, which plays a large role in everyone’s daily life, provides a significant opportunity for making eco-friendly choices. Food closest to its natural state is healthiest. Prepare and cook meals from scratch whenever possible to control what your family members are eating. Involve kids in this process as often as you can, so they learn to cook for themselves and see how fun it is. Choose organic and locally produced items to avoid chemicals, pesticides and genetically modified foods, and to reduce the environmental impact that meals can generate when non-local food makes its way to our dinner tables.

Grow a Garden

Take the concept of preparing food at home to another level by growing a backyard garden. Allow kids to participate in all aspects of the process, so they are able to learn from and enjoy the fruits of their own labor. For households with infants, garden upkeep provides opportunities for parents and babies to get some fresh air. With the use of a baby carrier, even the youngest children can take part in this family project. Not only is gardening educational, it is also an effective way for kids to become more enthusiastic about eating vegetables. To many kids, zucchini from the grocery store is just another green thing on the plate. But to kids who have grown it, zucchini from the garden is a reward for hard work and patience, and it tastes delicious.

Learn to Compost

You can decrease the need for fertilizers by enhancing your soil quality with compost made from kitchen and yard scraps. Children who learn to put organic material in a compost bin instead of the trash develop beneficial habits of reducing waste early in their lives. Composting also teaches several nature lessons. Youngsters can learn to appreciate worms (a sign of healthy compost) and “good dirt,” and older kids can learn about biodegradation and the importance of keeping methane-producing materials out of landfills. A compost bin is a great complement to a backyard garden, and it is an easy and environmentally friendly asset to households of any size. Bins can be as large as a raised garden bed or small enough to fit under the sink.

Drop the Disposable Habit When serving meals to young family members, reconsider disposable paper and potentially hazardous plasticware as automatic options. Instead, reach for reusable and non-toxic items. For drinkware, dinnerware and utensils, try items made of bamboo, ceramic, glass, stainless steel or BPA-free plastic. Bottles and sippy cups are also available in a variety of materials, including durable glass and stainless steel. Try to eliminate the need for paper towels and paper napkins by making cloth options accessible and easy to

use. Fill napkin holders with colorful, reusable cloth napkins and make dish towels readily available. If you can’t part completely with paper towels, move them under the sink and out of sight so they are used less often, while keeping dish towels in a visible, easy-to-reach location.

Switch to Cloth Diapers

Per estimates by the Real Diaper Association, the average baby goes through 2,920 diapers during its first two years of life, and more than 92 percent of all single-use diapers end up in landfills. Disposable diapers may seem like the only convenient option, but today’s cloth diapers are easy to use, economical, fashionable—and highly effective at reducing household waste. Even parttime cloth diapering makes a difference. Foregoing disposables one day a week can keep a significant amount of waste out of landfills over time. The cloth option is also healthier. Most disposable diapers contain a toxic absorbent gel that is particularly problematic for babies with extra-sensitive skin. If you must use disposables, try to shop for brands with sustainable, absorbent material that are organic and chlorine-free. Another step in the right direction is the use of cloth wipes.

Shop Smart

The mantra “buy only what is needed,” benefits the environment, the family bank account and everyone’s mental well-being. Children go through dozens of clothes and toys, but keeping up needn’t be overwhelming. Try handme-downs first, from friends and family or your own attic. Consignment shops offer another option, especially stores specializing in kids’ items. Remember to take your own outgrown toys and clothing to resale shops, store them for future use, or donate them. Before you head to the bookstore, stop at the local library. For infant toys, look around your own house. Babies often love old television remotes, pots and pans, rattles made from rice-filled, childproof bottles and boxes of varying sizes. When buying new products, seek those made in a sustainable way. Clothing fashioned from organic materials

natural awakenings

August 2010




Furniture and Accessories 403 Grand Avenue, Fairhope 251-990-4385 A children’s antique and vintage consignment shop located across from The Coffee Loft.


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and natural fibers is ideal, as are toys created from natural, sustainable raw materials that are free from toxic substances.

cans, electronics, and ink cartridges) as a fundraiser for a local nonprofit organization or school.

Teach Giving

Whether mopping up dirt-tracked floors or bathing muddy bodies, keep your cleaning habits green. Look for soaps, shampoos and lotions that don’t contain potentially harmful substances such as parabens, sodium laurel sulfate (SLS), or artificial fragrances or colors. Greener products are kinder to the environment and to animals as well, if they are cruelty-free (no animal testing or animal ingredients). They also are gentler on the skin. Household cleaners are often another source of toxins in the home. Try a homemade solution of vinegar and water in a spray bottle for most cleaning needs, and add a little baking soda for more challenging jobs. Or put your feet up and enlist an environmentally friendly cleaning service, such as Green Clean in Fairhope, and let someone else do the work.

Be Clean and Green

When toys, books, clothes and furniture are no longer needed or wearable, use that opportunity to teach kids about the importance and beauty of giving. Donating items that are no longer being used can help others in need, and it keeps those items out of the trash and landfills.

Get Creative

Teach kids to use their creativity by encouraging them to turn trash into treasure. Art projects are a great solution for unwanted items. For example, kids can color on the back of one-sided documents, paint containers such as coffee cans to give them a second life, and build structures with cardboard boxes before recycling them.

Recycle Before disposing of items that can’t be reused or composted, find out if they can be recycled. While curbside recycling is often an easy option for food and household containers, research other venues for items such as cell phones, ink cartridges, batteries, light bulbs, scrap metal and electronics. Most communities have recycling programs for these specialized (and sometimes hazardous) items. Go online for step-by-step instructions on how to recycle paper at home for crafts and art projects. Another fun and worthwhile activity is to collect items that can be cashed in (such as 20

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Open a Book

Unplug from the world of television, computers, cell phones and video games to enjoy books with children. Reading is an excellent opportunity to introduce eco-friendly concepts. Many Dr. Seuss books, such as The Lorax, teach valuable lessons in a fun and approachable manner, while classics such as Peter Rabbit focus on a connection with the natural world. Public libraries are a great community resource for educational programs and books for all ages, and they’re free.

251-928-2309 A nonprofit working to build a healthy coastal region by empowering and inspiring local citizens through education, research and dialogue.

Step Outside

Encourage kids to experience the outdoors, starting early in life. A breath of fresh air can immediately calm the minds of babies and children. Enjoy picnics in the park or in the backyard, go on walks and hikes, and visit zoos and nature preserves. Allow children to experience different habitats and observe various ecosystems. Invest in a beginner’s nature guide and learn to identify the flora and fauna in the backyard and on outings; document experiences with drawings, photographs and journal entries. By developing an appreciation for outdoor environments, children will grow up less likely to harm their natural surroundings and more inclined to care for them.

Support Community Involvement

Demonstrate the importance of being involved in the community by shopping at farmers’ markets, volunteering at local nonprofit organizations and participating in and encouraging school recycling programs and the creation of outdoor classrooms. Become aware of local organizations that promote sustainable living, such as Smart Coast, which organizes monthly walk-toschool events in the Gulf Coast region. Leading by inspired example helps children exercise their curiosity and natural sense of wonder as they explore new ways to enjoy health and wellbeing, connect with nature and reach out to others. As these bright-eyed “new beginnings” learn to care about and protect their environment and communities, they grow to care about the rest of the world, too.

raising green kids Tips from the Experts: Moms on the Gulf Coast Natural Awakenings recently asked eco-savvy area moms for their own tips and success stories on raising environmentally conscious children. Their expertise is inspiring and applicable for any family wanting to green their lifestyle.

Every experience with kids is such an opportunity to learn. When we’re out in the yard playing, our kids enjoy learning the Latin names of the trees in the yard. They like the funny words. We certified our yard as a wildlife habitat through the National Wildlife Federation, and there is lots of wildlife to watch. The kids are finding out what the animals eat, what flowers they like, and what chemicals might hurt them. They refer to the yard as “our habitat,” and tell people about it, so they’re proud of it. At this age, I don’t try to overwhelm them with the enormity of environmental destruction that’s going on, but just try to help them see how beautiful and magical healthy ecosystems are, and try to help them grow their roots here.” Rebecca Dunn Bryant Architect, Green Building Consultant, Watershed Mom of Tirza, 6, and Aldo, 4

Set a good example! When grocery shopping, focus on buying items with less packaging and involve kids in the selection process, including looking for items in recyclable packaging and foods that have less processing. Pack school lunches in reusable containers and send tap water to drink in reusable bottles. Encourage kids to scold us when we are caught using excessive energy: “Mom, are you using the hair dryer?”

Travel to places where people have less, but are still happy. Encourage sharing of material goods and ideas.” Debbie Coleman Architect, Sun Plans Inc. Mom of Gabe, 12

I am a cloth diaper advocate and I encourage other moms to give them a try, because they are easy to use and more affordable than disposables. This non-toxic option is the most natural choice for babies and is a way to significantly reduce the amount of waste going into landfills. It takes 3.5 billion gallons of oil to make disposable diapers every year.” Sara Phelan Owner, Mom of Emma, 4, and Penny, 2

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August 2010



What’s Best for Baby’s Bottom CLOTH MAKES A COMEBACK by Barb Amrhein


Best for Mother Earth and Baby Saving dollars is a key concern for most families, but caring parents’ need to both protect baby’s health and preserve the quality of the planet for their children are of equal importance. Yet, according to the National Geographic Society’s Green Guide, 95 percent of U.S. families still use disposables, which get sent to municipal landfills in the amount of 3.5 million tons per year. Along with the diapers goes the untreated sewage, creating potential

illions of new parents in the 1960s thought they had found the answer to their prayers in the mess-free convenience of disposable diapers. Sales of Pampers, Huggies and other brands continued to soar during the following decades. Sadly, so did a host of related problems: tons of soiled plastic diapers that could potentially contaminate groundwater packed the nation’s landfills; infant health concerns surfaced, including rashes, allergies and new respiratory and immune system worries; and delayed toilet training became an issue. In more recent years, a growing number of parents have determined that the greenest, healthiest and most economical way to cover baby’s bottom is with cloth, and new products are truly innovative.

Not Your Nana’s Nappies

Today’s “smart cloth” reusable diapers sport snaps, buttons and Velcro, rather than pins, and include a naturally 22

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mate green choice because they help reduce pesticide use, are also more expensive than conventional cotton diapers, which is why budget-minded parents often elect to buy gently used diapers. Conventional cotton is considered an environmentally wasteful crop to grow (though its effluents are far less hazardous than those from the plastic, pulp and paper industries), so green diapers are frequently made of hemp or bamboo, natural fabrics that feel soft against baby’s skin.

absorbent liner (often made of organic cotton or hemp fleece) under the cover. Much preferred over the rubber overpants of older products, these leaner, greener nappies use water-resistant covers of merino wool, nylon or polyurethane laminate that don’t leak, sag or smell (admittedly, even the use of smaller amounts of manufactured fabrics still isn’t perfect). Some diapers combine the liner and cover into one washable unit. Cloth diapers cost more upfront than disposables—they range from $6 to $18 each—but offer long-term savings. According to the Sierra Club, most parents who opt for home laundering will spend a total of between $400 and $1,700 for diapers, laundry supplies, water and electricity to get baby from birth through toilet training; disposables can run up to $2,500. (Click on the Cloth Diaper Resources link at for a helpful cost comparison guide.) Organic cotton diapers, the ulti-

The greening of baby diapers has not yet translated to adult diapers, although longer-lasting brands available online cut down on the volume of trash (see Japan’s answer is to convert used adult diapers into an alternative heating fuel. health risks. In addition, dioxin, a toxic byproduct of pulp and paper bleaching used in making most disposables, is a concern. More, disposables consume virgin pulp from an estimated 250,000 trees every year—also going straight from babies’ bottoms into landfills. The toxic stew smoldering underground isn’t the only uncomfortable

problem—the Green Guide notes that aboveground, animal studies have linked emissions from disposable diapers’ fragrances and plastics with infant respiratory problems and symptoms of asthma. The biocide tributyltin, which can be absorbed through the skin and lead to immune system damage and disrupted hormone function, has been detected in disposables, and diapers are not routinely tested for the substance. Most disposable diapers also contain polyacrylate crystals, or super absorbent polymers (SAP), that absorb up to 800 times their weight in liquid, turning into gel when wet and keeping baby dry and protected from diaper rash. If the diaper breaks open, though, the gel may end up on skin or in baby’s mouth, leading to skin or gastrointestinal irritation. Plus, because SAP allows diapers to retain lots of liquid while keeping baby’s bottom dry, the child may have a harder time recognizing when he or she is wet, and thus take longer to potty train than an infant wearing cloth.

Newest Innovations New hybrid diapers now feature cloth outer pants that are free of latex, chlorine and fragrance, and smaller, disposable inserts made of absorbent wood pulp and polyacrylate (still a potential concern). The inserts can absorb up to 100 times their weight in liquid. Because they don’t contain plastic, many can be composted, thrown in the trash or even flushed, although not in septic systems. Hybrids can be useful for traveling and are accepted at some day care centers that don’t have the resources to deal with cloth diapers. Companies that sell cloth diapers have reported sales increases of 25 to 50 percent over the past few years as eco-savvy parents convert from disposables. These new green moms and dads are determined to ensure an Earth- and baby-friendly “bottom” line.

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August 2010




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it up for health

9180 Airport Blvd in Mobile 2.5 miles W of Schillinger



by Ellen Mahoney

HOOPING TIPS n Use a hoop weighing 1 to 2 pounds; anything heavier creates too much torque for the organs and spine. n Stand up tall with good posture and feet a hip-distance apart; don’t look down. n Breathe deeply from the body’s core and push belly muscles toward the hoop. n Rock hips back and forth or from side-to-side; don’t rotate the hips in a circle. n Maintain the rhythm via belly and hip movement; don’t use the knees or lower back. n If the hoop starts to fall, move faster. Source: Betty Shurin and


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company. Hooping became an instant TV Producer Garry Marshall hit and a cultural icon, which lost aphen Betty peal over time until Shurin, aka revitalized in the late “Betty Hoops,” ’90s at music festivals. picked up a hula hoop 10 years That’s when fitness folks ago, she didn’t know that one became inspired to use the First Lady Michelle Obama day she’d take home a Guinness hoop for getting in shape. World Record. But in 2005, Shurin set These days, Shurin, a certified the pace for the world of hula racing, anusara yoga teacher, focuses her piorunning Colorado’s 10-kilometer Bolder neering spirit on hoop training as artful Boulder event with her bright red hoop exercise that blends aspects of yoga, continually spinning around her waist. sports and dance in workshops that “My goal was no stopping and no drop- crisscross the United States. She says ping,” she says. hoop exercise realigns and strengthens Today, like many fitness trainers core elements of the musculoskeletal across the country, this hooping pioneer system and claims individuals can lose teaches people of all ages and body inches around the waist and burn up to types who are interested in getting fit, 600 calories an hour with her program. losing weight, shaping up or just having Karla Kress-Boyle, a dancer from fun. “Hooping changes people’s lives,” Connecticut, says she is much stronger Shurin observes. “I love that when I from the hooping that helped her take hoop with others, I get to experience off weight after having a baby. She adds, “It definitely strengthened my the sheer playfulness of a child.” abdominal muscles.” The hoop has been around for Hula hooping is not exclusive to thousands of years, beginning in the women. Philo Hagen, editor of Los form of encircled grapevines and Angeles-based, discovered grasses used as a toy by children. The the updated phenomenon at a party evolution of the hula hoop, influenced by the Hawaiian island dance, emerged and says it immediately helped him in 1958 when wooden hoops from Aus- quiet the chatter in his head. “I just felt like I was connecting with the music tralia morphed into America’s plastic and my body, and wound up hooping edition, courtesy of the Wham-O toy


for hours.” Hagen soon realized how hooping was also helping him “accidentally get in shape.”At heart, he felt he was becoming more centered in both body and mind. Shurin explains that, “Hooping is similar to the [Sufi] whirling dervish dance that emphasizes the laws of physics, metaphysics and quantum physics.” In addition to strengthening the body, she sees the hoop as a wheel-like vortex that enables the hula hooper to receive energy, as well as release it. She recommends using a weighted adultsized hoop that weighs no more than two pounds; they even come in collapsible travel models. This year, hooping hit the big screen with director Amy Goldstein’s selfAmazing proclaimed online videos at: popumen• tary, The Hooping • Life. She performance first discov• ered hooping in Venice, California, where it’s hugely popular. “I’ve noticed that hooping brings people from every walk of life together,” Goldstein says. “It has a spiritual side, a business side and a healthy side, and I’ve seen how many young people who used to feel isolated and without direction are now hooping and living life to its fullest.”

Highlights of her feel good film include appearances by Michelle Obama and Shaquille O’Neal, plus intimate portraits of eight hoopers from around the world. “The essence of the film,” says Goldstein, “is about finding something you love and taking the risk to give it all you’ve got.” After discovering hooping, Anah Reichenbach, aka “Hoopalicious,” a California-based dancer and hooper in the film, started making and selling innovative hoops on her own. She now offers a hoop mentor certification program through hooping workshops nationwide. “Beyond being an incredible core workout,” Reichenbach says, “hooping can become an all-body, cardiovascular workout.” Other benefits she’s observed first-hand extend to increased calm and peacefulness, happiness and even more personal compassion. As a movement, the hoop has become a widespread symbol for individuals’ willingness to be free and playful as adults as well as show that they care about community; people unite around the rhythm and creativity. “You really can transcend yourself if you let yourself go with the hoop,” remarks Goldstein. “Even if you have no rhythm, you get it with a hoop.” Ellen Mahoney teaches writing at the University of Colorado, Boulder. Email

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natural awakenings

August 2010




that live with a nervous, angry or depressed person, may be more prone to separation anxiety. The breed and physical requirements of your dog may contribute to anxiety, as well. Dogs are social animals. They need to feel part of a pack, with a sense of rank. In the course of domesticating dogs, humans have become pack leaders in the minds of household canines, so the behavior and habits of the primary caregiver largely influences a dog’s behavior. While it may seem like a good idea to add another animal to the household to keep your companion company, this can actually make matters worse, by confusing its sense of pack hierarchy and creating a state of continuous competition. It may be a better idea to provide substitute leadership in the form of another human. Dog walkers, friends, neighbors or relatives could come by and spend time with the dog when you’re away, acting as a surrogate, temporary pack mate. You could consider a good doggie daycare provider, but there is no permanent substitute for the human alpha leader, who must be a strong, controlling presence whenever you are together. From the beginning of your relationship, a dog will gain trust and faith in your leadership, avoiding costly dog-sitting bills later on. Once puppyhood is past, you can keep a dog from becoming bored and tearing the house apart when you’re out by employing the following tips and tricks.



by Mary Wulff

n Leave the television on, tuned to a nature show channel. Human voices can provide reassurance that humans still exist during your absence.


orky the dog so dislikes being left alone that he has ripped up car upholstery and jumped through windows in an attempt to rejoin his humans when they leave the house for school, work or errands. Shay, on the other hand, watches calmly out the window when her humans leave each day. Dog lovers with a pet that trembles, whines or rushes to the door in anticipation of being left alone know that the problem can interfere with work, school or travel days and make life difficult for you and your companion. In severe cases, a vet may even prescribe a sedative or antidepressant drug for an animal, a practice that seldom reaches the root causes of separation anxiety, and may lead to serious, longterm health problems.

Order in the Pack To start, it is important to understand that virtually every domestic dog lives in a confusing world. Improperly socialized or mistreated, abused or abandoned dogs, as well as those 26

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n Leave talk radio on. Soothing music also tames the savage beast, and in many cases it will help a lonely, confused pooch to relax. n A toy filled with peanut butter or dog treats might keep him busy. Upon returning home, give the dog the treats that were in the toy and take the toy away. n Ignore the dog for several minutes before leaving the house and when you return. Do not shower him with hugs and kisses as you are leaving, as this may add to his anxiety. n Begin by leaving for short periods of time, and then increase it over a few weeks. Each time you return, have the dog sit, and praise and reward him with a treat when he is calm. n When in doubt, work with a recommended animal behaviorist. Also, consider any physical problems that may be causing the anxiety disorder.

Natural Diet and Supplement Aids Some people may feel they need to resort to drugs when they are at their wit’s end from dealing with a dog that acts out by becoming aggressive around people or outright destructive when no one is home. These are behaviors sometimes seen when an animal is receiving inadequate nutrition or essential brain nutrients. In the holistic realm, the foundation to treating any animal problem, physical or mental, begins with a good diet. A home-prepared diet is best (how-to books are available), but a high-quality, natural commercial food may also help. Behavior problems can lessen or go away with a simple change in nutrition. Adequate essential fatty acids, including omega 3, are necessary supplements for dogs, even if they are fed a commercial diet. They help the nervous system function more smoothly and help improve skin and coat condition. Some animals may need extra help from herbs to get through a particularly stressful time. One miniature schnauzer benefited from ingesting a formula made for dogs that contained valerian, skullcap, oat flower and passionflower before his owners would leave the house. Max became calmer and stopped tearing apart the furniture after just a few weeks of using the herbs. Other animals become anxious in the vicinity of loud noises, whether or not the caregiver is at home. Many care-

givers have found a melatonin supplement helpful in these instances. Whatever the reason, it’s hard to leave a companion behind when you know they suffer in your absence. With a bit of knowledge and care, you can help make the periods of separation much easier. Mary Wulff is a veterinary herbalist consultant and co-author with Gregory Tilford of Herbs for Pets. She specializes in home-prepared diets, herbs and homeopathy for companion animals from her office in Hamilton, MT. Connect at Cedar


Sammy is an adorable 3 year old little ball of fluff (aka Pomeranian). A lovable little man with a bit of spunk, he makes a great lap dog as well as a playful companion. Sammy would be great as the only pet of a household or as a companion for anybody with another dog. He enjoys the outdoors but needs someone to show him how to walk on a leash.

Cheddar is quite an inquisitive young cat! He is affectionate, outgoing, curious, and will try to play with just about anything you have. Always asking for attention, he loves affection from humans and enjoys hanging out with other cats as well.

All pets adopted from The Haven are fixed, current with their vaccinations, de-wormed, de-fleaed, micro-chipped, accompanied with medical records, free bag of Hill’s Science Diet, free pet training DVD, and much more. To adopt, please download an application or view other homeless animals in need of a great home on our website. or call 251-929-3980 or email The Haven is a non-profit no-kill sanctuary located in Fairhope. Help is always needed and appreciated! natural awakenings

August 2010




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sy of ID courte

unworkable in our present society, where education funding is increasingly tied to student academic performance. But 40 years after the birth of The Free School, and the 1960s “democratic education” movement that inspired it, the nearly defunct philosophy appears to be making a comeback. In May, a group of educators founded the Institute for Democratic Education in America (IDEA), which, Students practice hands-on through town meetings, learning outside of classroom walls. social networking and online education, aims to help teachers infuse more crucial point,” says Jerry student choice into what they see Mintz, who founded as an autocratic K-12 public school AERO in 1989. “Everysystem. Meanwhile, new, private body knows there is democratic schools have opened in something wrong with Seattle, Portland, Denver, New York the current educational City and elsewhere, bringing the system, and people are number to 85, according to the nonnow starting to realize profit Alternative Education Resource they have choices.” Organization (AERO). In all, its online directory has swelled to 12,000 opOld Factory tions, including those affiliated with Model of Montessori, Waldorf, Democratic and Schooling other methods which, while they differ When parents step into in curriculum, all share a dedication many public school to a learner-centered approach. classrooms today, they By contrast, according to the U.S. find neat rows of desks Department of Education, the number occupied by children, of kids enrolled in an assigned public school dipped from 80 percent in 1993 while a teacher in the front of the room presents to 73 percent in 2007. “We are at a



sk Isaac Graves what seventh grade was like at The Free School in Albany, New York, and he paints a picture that would seem like a dream to many conventional middle schoolers—and a nightmare to their administrators. There were no tests, no homework and almost no schedules. On a typical day, students of all ages would scatter around the refurbished inner-city tenement at will, some spontaneously engaging in a game of Dungeons and Dragons in one room, while others planned a trip to Puerto Rico, learned Spanish from a fellow student, or designed a literary magazine on the computer. At weekly, democratic, all-school meetings, they voted on everything from what optional classes the school should offer to what color to paint the walls; not once were they asked to fill in small circles with a number 2 pencil to prove they were learning something. “We were, at a very young age, in control of our education,” recalls Graves, a remarkably astute 23-year-old who now lives in Oregon and works as an event planner. “I had to figure out what I liked, what my passions were, and how to access information in a variety of ways. I had to interact with adults in a real way—not just as authority figures. I had to learn how to learn.” To many, the notion of a school without schedules where kids and adults have equal say and “test” is almost a dirty word seems utterly


Is a more democratic model of schooling the answer to today’s education crisis?

y of Harriet photo courtes

Tubman Fre

e School

mom named Mary Leue opened The Free School in Albany (Albany FreeSchool. com). By the 1970s, as many as 800 democratic schools were in operation. While pioneering models like Sudbury Valley and The Free School have survived and flourished, Miller says the larger movement became usurped by the 1980s trend toward more standardization, with most democratic schools shutting their doors. Now, growing discontent over standardization has inspired a revival. “The public school system tends to operate under the paradigm that kids are naturally lazy and must be forced to learn, so they need homework and testing to be motivated,” says Mintz. “Advocates of democratic education and other learner-centered approaches believe that children have a natural passion for learning and are good judges of what they need to learn. Our job as educators is to provide them resources.”

a lesson. When the bell rings, students file into another room, where the same scene plays out again. That structure, according to education historians, is no accident. With the Industrial Revolution underway in the 1800s and waves of families moving from rural settings (where life followed a seasonal rhythm) to cities, education pioneers faced a formidable task. “Civic leaders realized that people were not well prepared for this new lifestyle of working in a factory,” explains Ron Miller, Ph.D., a widely published education historian. “Public education was designed with the idea that people had to learn how to follow a set schedule, follow orders and come up with a product in the end. The day was broken up into time periods with a bell, because that was what factory work entailed.” Miller observes that the system served its purpose well. “The U.S. became a tremendously productive industrial society.” But by the 1960s, some critics began to point to what they saw as a glaring hypocrisy: America claimed to be a democratic society, yet our youngest citizens were given no voice. In 1968, a group of parents in Sudbury, Massachusetts, founded the Sudbury Valley School, a K-12 learning center where adults were literally prohibited from initiating activities, while kids chose what to do, where and when (SudVal. org). One year later, a homeschooling

Renewed Democracy in Action Rebirth of the democratic school movement can be credited in part to Alan Berger, an idealistic New York teacher who, after reading an article about the 1960s Free School movement in 2002, was inspired to open The Brooklyn Free School in the basement of a small church. Today, the school is thriving, with a diverse student body of 60, a new five-story brownstone to call home, and a sliding fee scale that lets children of all economic backgrounds participate in an education they largely create themselves. On a typical morning, students gather in the music room for impromptu Beatles jam sessions, do yoga in the

“Montessori really is a ‘no child left behind’ teaching philosophy. If you are ready to keep moving, you keep moving. If you aren’t, you can stay on task until you get it.” ~ Tanya Stutzman, whose six children have attended Montessori schools in Sarasota, Florida

“The reading, writing and academics all came out eventually, as day-to-day living required that they learned them.” ~ Wonshe, who “unschooled” both of her sons in rural Virginia

“Waldorf understands that there are many ways for a child to express oneself— not just through words and academics, but also through creativity.” ~ Patrice Maynerd, who enrolled her son in Waldorf education at age 3

hallway, scrawl art across a designated wall or curl up with a book in the wellstocked library. Some attend optional math and writing classes. For others, the year’s lesson plan evolves more organically out of a larger goal. For example, in preparation for a school trip to Tanzania, some students studied Swahili, African cuisine and the region’s history. “There are just so many things that I love here,” raves student Erin Huang Schaffer in a new documentary about the school called The Good, The True and The Beautiful. “I love making art and drawing, and I’ve started making stories… I’m just finding out so much about the world.” Thousands of miles away, at a new democratic preschool called The Patchwork School, in Louisville, Colorado,

natural awakenings

August 2010


y of Harriet photo courtes

e School Tubman Fre

Ph.D., surveyed 431 alumni from the democratic Jefferson County Open School in Denver (one of the oldest public alternative schools in the country) and found that 91 percent went to college, 85 percent completed degreed programs and 25 percent earned graduate degrees. Many lauded their K-12 education there: “Because of the school, I am much less influenced by the need to conform and I’m not afraid to take risks,” said Adelle, a 1986 graduate who went on to become a project manager for an entertainment company. Other comments were less glowing: “I found that I had to scramble to catch up with my peers; the school failed to provide me with even the most basic mathematical skills,” said Mary, a 1991 graduate. Kristin, from the class of 1997 added, “When I was applying to colleges, I wished that I had some documentation other than self-assessment; I think this hurt me.” But still other democratic alumni contend that the struggle is only temporary and—in hindsight—well worth it. Meghan Carrico, 47, attended a democratic school in North Vancouver from age 8 to 13. She told Natural Awakenings she did fine academically when she transitioned to a mainstream public high school, but found it “boring and socially barren,” with teachers who didn’t appreciate her tendency to question author-

the same principles apply to even the youngest learners. On a recent day, a group of 5-year-olds held a vote and elected to spend the morning crafting miniature cardboard cities. Then their instructor, a precocious 5-yearold named Evan, led the way to the workroom, passing out paints, scissors, Popsicle sticks and glue as an adult watched quietly nearby. “Everyone here has a voice,” affirms Patchwork co-founder Elizabeth Baker, who was homeschooled in a democratic fashion herself. “If we can validate who they are as people now, they can go out into the world with confidence that their thoughts and opinions count.” But, will they be prepared for that world?

Good Questions Will children, given the freedom, choose to learn basic skills like reading and math? What will this revolutionary breed of students have to show a college entrance board if they have no test scores? And how will kids schooled with little structure and no hierarchy thrive in a professional world with so much of both? Skeptics abound, and they have pounced on such questions. Meanwhile, informal surveys of democratic school graduates have yielded mixed answers. For his new book, Lives of Passion; School of Hope, Rick Posner, 30

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Helpful Resources

ity and venture beyond the status quo. She dropped out in 11th grade, then dropped out of a community college for many of the same reasons. “If I contradicted the professor, I got a bad grade,” she recalls. Ultimately, Carrico made her way to the highly progressive Antioch College in Ohio (one of 815 colleges now willing to consider students with no high school test scores), where she ended up with a master’s degree in leadership and training. She also landed a job that she loves, teaching in a democratic school. While Carrico relates that her own early schooling may not have prepared her to fit in at a mainstream classroom or top-down workplace, it absolutely prepared her for a changing world in which factory jobs are dwindling and people must think outside the box. “People who are really successful in the world today are not waiting around to be told what to do,” she comments. Instead, “they are actively creating social networks and seeking out knowledge on their own; these are the very things they learn from kindergarten on in democratic schools.” College success and career paths aside, Miller believes the best way to determine if democratic education is working is to pay a visit to a school and ask the question: “Are the kids excited about school or not?” On a recent May afternoon at Colorado’s Jefferson County Open School, students lounged on puffy couches or sat on the steps with their principal, whom they casually called Wendy. The school year was officially over and warm weather beckoned, but they were in no rush to leave. To Anna Reihmann, 17, a graduating senior who has attended there since preschool, excelled academically and is headed to college next year, it was a particularly bittersweet day. “I have learned so much about who I am as a person here. It has always felt like home,” she said that day. Then she uttered the three words that many parents and teachers say that they don’t hear often enough from students these days: “I love school.” Lisa Marshall is a freelance writer in Lyons, CO. Contact her at Lisa

Guide At A Glance

Alternative Education Approaches MONTESSORI The Montessori method was born in 1907 in the slums of Italy, when physician Maria Montessori founded Casa dei Bambini, or Children’s House, a school for 50 preschoolers. She believed that children learn best when allowed to independently explore an orderly environment, stocked with hands-on materials that engage all five senses. Today, the United States is home to 10,000 Montessori schools. More than 60 percent are for children under 6, with an increasing number extending through high school; kids are grouped in three-year age spans. Classrooms for the youngest children come stocked with miniature furniture and kitchens, which enables them to make their own snacks and lunches. Independence and order are key, as students are free to move around the room, selecting from neatly arranged materials, like strings of beads that represent numbers or wooden blocks symbolizing letters. “Montessori is hyper-intellectual,” comments Tim Seldin, of the International Montessori Council. “We raise kids who are joyful scholars.” A 2006 study in Science Magazine found Montessori 5-year-olds were significantly better prepared in science and math than those who attended conventional preschools. They also tested better on executive function, defined as the ability to adapt in response to problems. “They don’t just make you memorize facts,” says 15-year-old Natacha Stutzman, who attended a Montessori school in Sarasota, Florida, through 8th grade. “They teach you life lessons.”

WALDORF The Waldorf movement began in 1919, when Austrian scientist Rudolf Steiner established a school for children of employees of the Waldorf Astoria cigarette factory in Stuttgart, Germany. According to his philosophy, children evolve through three, seven-year stages, first absorbing the world through the senses in early childhood, and later through fantasy and imagination. Only after puberty comes the rational, abstract power of the intellect. Consequently, Waldorf’s lower-grade educators emphasize free play and fantasy and discourage exposure to media. Most schools allow no computers in the classroom until middle school, and reading is not formally taught until second grade. “At a time when kindergartens are becoming more academic, we are protecting the child’s right to play,” advises Patrice Maynerd, outreach director for the Association of Waldorf Schools of North America. She explains that rather than using textbooks, students create their own lesson books, which they build upon through high school. In contrast to the widespread elimination of art and music classes in public schools, Waldorf’s philosophy centers on creating the “Renaissance child,” encouraging every student to play an instrument and participate in theater. Teachers follow their classes through the first eight grades, so that one child may have the same instructor for their entire experience. There are 165 Waldorf Schools in North America. A Waldorf-sponsored survey of 526 graduates found that 94 percent attended college, and 90 percent are highly satisfied with their careers.

Find details at

Find details at

HOMESCHOOLING AND UNSCHOOLING Today, more than 2 million students are homeschooled in the United States, up from 850,000 in 1999, according to the U.S. Department of Education. While roughly 90 percent of these students follow some set curriculum, about 10 percent adhere to an approach called unschooling, which, much like democratic education, allows students to choose what and how they wish to learn, and for how long. “I define unschooling as allowing children as much freedom to learn in the world as their parents can comfortably bear,” says Pat Farenga, president of Holt Associates Inc., a homeschooling consulting firm. “For instance, a young child’s interest in hot rods might lead him or her to a study of how the engine works (science), how and when a car was built (history and business), and who built it (biography). They learn when it makes sense for them to do so.” Find details at, supplemented by

natural awakenings

August 2010


Local Alternative Education by Meredith Montgomery


obile and Baldwin counties are home to a variety of alternative education options. Two schools currently accepting enrollment are J.B. Shelton Academy, in Mobile, and Weinacker’s Montessori School, with locations throughout both counties.

average classroom. Shelton explains, “Once a child experiences such a positive and adaptable learning environment where each child’s own nature can fulfill itself, self-esteem and confidence begin to climb and stress begins to disappear.”

J.B. Shelton Academy

Weinacker’s Montessori School

At Shelton Academy middle and high school, each student works at his or her own pace. While some students may complete two grades in one year, others may require two years to complete one grade. With predominantly one-onone instruction and occasional group sessions, the teachers at Shelton are sensitive to differences in learning styles and educational goals. President and owner Janet Shelton says, “Our philosophy is that each student is unique, with a special combination of individual strengths and individual weaknesses. We believe that the purpose of education is to remove barriers and enhance opportunities.” The teachers provide an atmosphere of encouragement and acceptance, respecting all abilities and limitations. With a shortened school day, Shelton promotes active learning and participation, while allowing ample time out of school for sports and other physical exercise. To foster a stress-free environment, no entrance or exit exams are given. All children are met “wherever they are” in achieving personal goals. The school’s mission—achievement with flexibility—is beneficial for students with learning disabilities and those bored by the pace of the

For younger children ages two to six, Weinacker’s Montessori School now has five locations throughout Mobile and Daphne. Weinacker’s fundamental goal is to prepare children for life. The Montessori curriculum is based on the premise that children have absorbent minds and an innate desire to learn. When given the proper environment and freedom, children will direct their own learning activities. Amanda Cooper, director of the Daphne location, says, “Children learn best from each other, and we encourage children to teach each other.” When a conflict arises between two preschoolers, teachers encourage kids to help themselves by guiding them to come to a resolution on their own. Teachers avoid leading the classes as a group, but instead move around the room to teach the students individually. The children are able to set their own learning pace and style, with each teacher following each child’s lead. According to Cooper, a significant amount of time is spent observing the children. In addition, their learning environments are kept clutter-free. If kids wish to hang their artwork on the walls, they are allowed to do so, but the walls remain free of hangings otherwise, enabling the children to focus on learning in an open, calm atmosphere. Weinacker’s Montessori School believes that learning occurs through self-discovery. It places emphasis on the concepts of natural development, spontaneity and the natural goodness of the child. For more information on Shelton Academy, visit or call 251-639-1131. For more information on Weinacker’s Montessori, visit or call 251-626-6163.


MICHAEL M. WILSON creative & graphic designer

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wisewords A Conversation with

Elizabeth Gilbert Author of Eat, Pray, Love Now a Film Starring Julia Roberts by Leah Ingram


lizabeth “Liz” Gilbert’s story of her year-long odyssey of self-rediscovery via sojourns in Italy, India and Indonesia, after divorcing herself from her former way of life, struck a nerve with millions of women around the world through her bestseller, Eat, Pray, Love, available in 40 languages. Now, actress Julia Roberts renders the universal truth embodied in Gilbert’s personal journey accessible to an even broader audience with this summer’s release of a film based on the book. “It’s the way that [Liz] wrote this book,” says Roberts. “It’s like a bell that just keeps ringing.” Gilbert believes her message resonates because it’s about trying to figure out who we are in relationship to those around us and how we get over our greatest disappointments and try again. In the end, Gilbert does get in tune with herself and coincidentally, finds true love, which is further explored in her latest chronicle, Committed: A Skeptic Makes Peace with Marriage. It’s her go at unraveling the mysteries of marriage.

How are you different after Eat, Pray, Love?

I think the main difference is this relationship that I forged with myself in all those months spent alone, particularly in India; in those long, tedious, difficult, emotionally painful hours sitting in the meditation chamber, trying to find some sort of center in all that maelstrom of thought and confusion and worry and anxiety and resentment and that whole soup that I was bathed in before I left [home]. And to watch the evolution over time, over those months, and see myself go from somebody who quite literally could not spend five minutes in silence in her own company without crawling out of her own skin to somebody who could sit for four or five consecutive hours and be undisturbed by my own existence on Earth—it seems like a simple thing, but isn’t. In that silence and stillness, I met this other voice that I never had before, which is this older part of me—this calm, sedate, affectionate, forgiving, wise soul that watches my comings and goings and my spastic fears and desires and anger, and all the stuff that pulls on me, and intercepts me before I get dragged too far away from myself. And she just says, very sweetly and with a kind of amusement, ‘Do you really want to go through this again? Because if you do, I’ll do it with you. But, maybe we don’t want to do this again. Maybe we want to actually remember what we learned and do a different thing.’

How did you integrate what you learned from your trips into your daily life?

For me, all the spiritual lessons that I learned would mean nothing if they didn’t have a practical application. So I was eager, after my four months in the ashram, to come back home and put it into practice. I mostly use it in trying to arrange my life so that it is as unstressful as possible. I push every day against forces that say you have to go faster, be more effective, be more productive, you have to constantly outdo yourself, you have to constantly outdo your neighbor—all of the stuff that creates an incredibly productive society, but also a very neurotic one.

How can a broken heart lead to a fuller heart?

There’s a line from Leonard Cohen, he has this wonderful song that says; “There’s a crack in everything—that’s where the light gets in.” And I think that’s probably the best encapsulation of how a broken heart can lead to a bigger heart. The light causes the expansion. There’s also this wonderful adage that says, “You can’t push out darkness. You can only bring in light.” If you’re in a closet and it’s black, there’s no way to sweep darkness out. The only thing you can do is ignite, illuminate somehow. And the only way to get into a darkened, miserable heart is to break it. I had kind of given up on love, but hadn’t given up on myself. That’s what I did on this journey—I said, “I’m going to marry my own life and make that wonderful, even if it means that I don’t have this experience of intimacy that everybody wants.” And of course, because the universe loves to be ironic, I found the intimacy that everybody wants. So whatever the lesson is that comes from that—if it brings hope, let there be hope. Source: Adapted from


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August 2010



All Calendar events must be received by the 10th of the month prior to publication and adhere to our guidelines. Go to to submit entries.


Gentle Yoga with Martha Collier – 12pm. Martha is back! A calming yoga class to ease stress and quiet the mind. Let her soothing words, movements and chakra meditation envelop the body. Synergy Yoga and Pilates, Mobile. 251-473-1104.

Crime Prevention 5K Run/Walk – 6:30pm. Start the racing season with a downtown evening run. Flat certified course with water stops. Awards to overall winners and 3 deep in 5-year age groups. Post-race party and door prizes. $15 day of race. Bienville Square, Mobile. 251-473-7223.


Bellingrath Gardens Founder’s Day – 8am-5pm. In honor of Mr. Bellingrath’s birthday, admission to the gardens will be free for all Mobile and Baldwin county residents. Bellingrath Gardens and Home, Theodore. 251-973-2217.


Cycle United 2010: Community Awareness Ride – 6am. A family-oriented bike ride to benefit United Way of SW Alabama and its community partners. $40/ adults, $15/children. Municipal (Langan) Park, 4901 Zeigler Blvd, Mobile.

MONDAY, AUGUST 9 Shelton Academy Open House – Aug 9-10. 9-11am. J.B. Shelton Academy middle and high school will host Open House and Meet the Teacher events for anyone interested in visiting the school. 1050 Hillcrest Rd, Mobile. SheltonAcademyAl. org. 251-639-1311.

Free Concert: Doug Breau and Katie Belle – 7pm. Backed by live musicians, these vocal professionals will stir memories as they sing songs from the 40’s through the 70’s including country and western, and popular standards. Free. Erie H. Meyer Civic Center, Gulf Shores. 251-968-1172.

Master Environmental Education Training – Aug 19-20. Train to become an environmental educator and give back to the community. No previous teaching experience or knowledge required. Weeks Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve. For info and to register: 251-937-7176 or 251-943-5061. Toxins in Your Home – 1-3pm. Tammy Jones, Young Living Educator, will expose the hidden toxic chemicals found in homes, bring an awareness to the health impacts they have, and suggest simple, easy, healthier alternatives with easy fragrant recipes. Free. Curves, Hwy 13, Daphne. 251-604-9532. The Journal: My New Best Friend – 7-9pm. Explore the many creative ways journal writing can support life goals and spiritual focus. Bring a journal and favorite pen. Donation. Conscious Mile Center for Spiritual Living, 1230 Montlimar Dr, Mobile. 251-343-0777.

Anusara® Workshop – The Rasas: Taste the Full Spectrum of Life – Aug 28-29. 1-4pm and 5-7pm. Yoga workshop with Cat McCarthy, Certified Anusara® Instructor. Yoga Birds, Fairhope. Register:


2nd Annual Labor Day on the Lawn – 8-11pm. Family-oriented concert event on the marina lawn overlooking the water. Free. The Wharf, Orange Beach. 205-224-1012.


First Annual Sea Turtle Festival – 10am-2pm. An event to celebrate and raise awareness of the sea turtles on Alabama’s beaches. Kids activities, educational scavenger hunt, face-painting and more. Free. Gulf State Park Pavilion, Gulf Shores. Info: or 866-SEA-TURTLE.


23rd Annual Coastal Clean Up – A chance to take pride in the unique and treasured waterway system of Coastal Alabama. Info: 251-621-1216 or

Master Environmental Education Training – Aug 19-20. See Aug 19 listing. Weeks Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve. For info and to register: 251-937-7176 or 251-943-5061.

SATURDAY, AUGUST 21 Essential Oils and Yoga – 11am. Judith Wilson, Independent Distributor with Young Living Essential Oils, will present a workshop on learning how essential oils can enhance anyone’s yoga practice. Free. Synergy Yoga and Pilates, Mobile. For info: 251-473-1104.


SATURDAY, AUGUST 14 MARK YOUR CALENDAR! Living Longer and Loving It – 9-11am. Conscious Mile Center for Spiritual Living welcomes Betty Sue O’Brian, Naturopath, Herbalist, Iridologist and wellness coach, to lead a wellness workshop. Appointments for iridology readings are available after workshop. Appointments: Judy, 251656-6696. Donation. 1230 Montlimar Dr, Mobile. 251-343-0777.

Little River State Forest Work Day – 7:30am. LA Hikers will host this work day to groom two trails. No trail work experience required. Forest is 11 mi N of Atmore on Hwy 21. RSVP: 251-533-1812 or

NA Mobile / Baldwin Edition






Fairhope Community Garden Meeting – 6:30pm. The Local Food Production Initiative will host an informational meeting about the community garden plans and how Fairhope residents can participate. Open to the public. Christian Life Center, United Methodist Church, 155 S Section St, Fairhope. For info: or 251-928-8646.





Free Concert: The Heltons – 7pm. Three-generation family band with a crowd-pleasing variety of music. Country, gospel, pop and more. Free. Erie H. Meyer Civic Center, Gulf Shores. 251-968-1172. Toxins in Our Homes – 7-8:30pm. Laurie Azzarella, Young Living Educator, will expose the hidden toxic chemicals found in homes, bring an awareness to the health impacts they have, and suggest simple, easy, healthier alternatives with easy fragrant recipes. Free with RSVP. Office/Home Bay Branch Estates off Rte 90, Daphne. RSVP and info: 251-625-0080.


Fort Morgan Road Trail Hike – Inventory hike with LA Hikers on 6-mile point-to-point multi-use trail. For info: or

TELL US HOW WE’RE DOING! To help us serve you better, please participate in our online survey. Visit our website at:


All Calendar events must be received by the 10th of the month prior to publication and adhere to our guidelines. Go to to submit entries.

sunday Conscious Mile Spiritual Center Service – 10am. Make every step we take, every choice we make, every word we speak a conscious one. New Thought Spiritual Center, 1230 Montlimar, Mobile. Rev. Sherrie Quander, 251-343-0777. Sunday Service – 10:30am. Explore one’s spiritual pathway. Mobile Unitarian Universalists, 6345 Old Shell Rd, Mobile. Sunday Worth-ship Celebration – 10:30am. Find, strengthen and celebrate one’s connection with Divine Spirit. Donation. Unity on the Eastern Shore, 22979 US Hwy 98, one mile north of US Hwy 104, Montrose. 251-990-8934. Sunday Worship – 11am. Celebrate Spirit in this special and sacred space. Unity Mobile, 5859 Cottage Hill, between Hillcrest and Knollwood, Mobile. 251-661-1788. Free Sunday Matinee – 2-3pm. Different nature films shown each week. Free. 5 Rivers Delta Resource Center, Spanish Fort. 251-625-0814.

monday Pizza Night – First Mon each month. Have a little fun while getting healthy. Free pizza for members. All Planet Fitness locations (3 in Mobile, 1 in Daphne). For details: 251-414-2700. Strengthening and Stretching Class – 9am. Free for Thomas Hospital Seniors’ Best members (free membership). James P. Nix Center, Fairhope. For more info: 251-928-2835. Bosom Buddies Breast Cancer Support Group – 12pm. Second Mon each month. For breast cancer patients, families and friends. Thomas Hospital Health Resource Center. For more info: American Center Society, 251-928-8650 or Thomas Hospital, 251-279-4008. Yoga with Chris – 5:45pm. An energizing blend of Iyengar and Vinyasa yoga. Recharge the body and refocus the mind after a long day. Synergy Yoga and Pilates, Mobile. 251-473-1104.

tuesday 10% Terrific Tuesdays – 10% discount entire stock. The Health Food Center, 5238 US Hwy 90, Ste G, Mobile. 251-661-3065. Bagel Morning – Second Tues each month. Have a little fun while getting healthy. Free bagels for members. All Planet Fitness locations (3 in Mobile, 1 in Daphne). For details: 251-414-2700. Complimentary First Facials – Tues-Sat, by appointment only. First-time facial customers receive their first facial free. Monette’s Family Hair, Magnolia Place, Hwy 98, Ste J, Daphne. Dixie: 251-621-8511. West Mobile Success Circle – 8-9am. First Tues each month. Female business owners are invited to join a networking/mentoring group to learn to grow their businesses. Free. Legacy Financial Planning, 5901 Airport, Mobile. 251-219-4574.

Low Impact Aerobics Class – 9am. Free for Thomas Hospital Seniors’ Best members (free membership). James P. Nix Center, Fairhope. For more info: 251-928-2835. Anusara-Inspired® Yoga Level 1/2 – 9:15am. Yoga to expand the heart with Melanie Buffett, E-RYT and Licensed Anusara-Inspired® Yoga Teacher. $15. Yoga Birds, Fairhope. More info: or 251-990-3447. Fibromyalgia Support Group – 10:30am. Second Tues each month. For friends and family of patients with Fibromyalgia. Thomas Medical Center, Boardroom, Daphne. For more info, call Jason Pierce, 251-752-1140 or Thomas Hospital, 251-279-4008. Gentle Yoga with Martha – 12pm. Martha is back! Take a break in the middle of the day to relieve stress, renew the spirit, and relax the mind. Synergy Yoga and Pilates, Mobile. 251-473-1104. Parkinson’s Support Group – 12pm. Third Tues each month. For friends and family of patients with Parkinson’s disease. Thomas Medical Center, Daphne. For more info, call Jane Godfrey, 251-4559919 or Thomas Hospital, 251-279-4008. Fairhope Bicycle Company Ride: Thrills, Old Battles Road Criterium Practice – 6pm. 45-60 mins on closed course. Riders are able to drop out and re-enter. Leave from Fairhope Bicycle Company, 325 S Greeno Rd across from Thomas Hospital in Fairhope. 251-990-7383. LA Hikers Meeting – 6-7pm. First Tues each month. Speaker TBA. Free and open to the public. 5 Rivers Delta Resource Center, Spanish Fort. Mobile Bay Canoe and Kayak Club Meeting – 7-8:30pm. First Tues each month. For pro-paddlers and those brand new to the sport. A great place to meet others interested in kayaks and canoes. Open to the public. 5 Rivers Delta Resource Center, Spanish Fort. Sierra Club Meeting – 6-8pm. First Tues each month. Open to the public. 5 Rivers Delta Center, Spanish Fort. Amphibian and Reptile Keepers Meeting – 6-8:30pm. First Tues each month. Anyone interested in herps is welcome. Membership is free. 5 Rivers Delta Center, Spanish Fort. GulfCoastHerpSociety. Foundations of Yoga – 6:15pm. Learn the components of poses to begin a safe and effective yoga practice. $15. Yoga Birds, Fairhope. More info: or 251-990-3447. Diabetes Support Group – 6:30pm. First Tues each month. For people with diabetes and their families and friends. Thomas Hospital Diabetes Center. For more info: Thomas Hospital Diabetes Center, 251-279-1700. CWG Mobile Group – 7-9pm. Second and fourth Tues each month. Read and discuss books by Neale Donald Walsch. Joy N Love, 171 Crenshaw St, Mobile. 251-382-4215. CWG_Mobile_Group@ Rosie Blu’s Free Meditation Classes – 7pm. Guided meditation is a relaxation exercise and a way to reconnect with the divine spirit that resides in each of us individually; however, mostly, it is just a nice break from a crazy pace and hectic lifestyle.

Free. Healing Hands Massage, 409 N Section St, Fairhope. Jennifer: 251-517-5483. Spiritual Cinema Group – 7-9pm. First and third Tues each month. View and discuss spiritual DVDs. Contact Heiner, 251-607-9089.

wednesday Discounted Perms for Seniors – Seniors 65 and over receive discounted perms. Monette’s Family Hair, Magnolia Place, Hwy 98, Ste J, Daphne. Dixie: 251-621-8511. Viniyoga with Rhonda – 6:45am. Viniyoga is directed toward healing – a yoga for all ages. Join Rhonda to energize the breath and renew the spirit. Synergy Yoga and Pilates, Mobile. 251-473-1104. Alzheimer’s Support Group – 10:30am. First Wed each month. For family and friends of patients with Alzheimer’s disease. Thomas Medical Center, Daphne. For more info, call Bunnie Sutton or Kellie Sutton of the Alzheimer’s Foundation of the South, 251-660-5661 or Thomas Hospital, 251-279-4008. Pranic Healing and Meditation – 7pm. Pranic Healing clinics offered to the public followed by the meditation on Twin Hearts. Learn to heal oneself in upcoming classes. Free. Mobile. RSVP: 251-454-0959.

thursday Low Impact Aerobics Class – 9am. Free for Thomas Hospital Seniors’ Best members (free membership). James P. Nix Center, Fairhope. For more info: 251-928-2835. Story Time at 5 Rivers – 10-10:30am. For parents and children. Relax while we do the reading. Recommended for children age 6 and younger, great for toddlers and lap babies too. Free. 5 Rivers Delta Resource Center, Spanish Fort. 251-625-0814.

Traumatic Brain Injury and Spinal Cord Support Group – 10am. First Thurs each month. Thomas Medical Center, Daphne. For more info: Joy Peters, 251-626-6337 or Thomas Hospital, 251-279-4008. ALS Support Group – 11am. Second Thurs each month. For people with ALS and their families and friends. Thomas Medical Center, Daphne. For more info: Lynn Sanderson, 205-937-4415 or Thomas Hospital, 251-279-4008. Yoga with Chris McFayden – 5:45pm. Join Chris McFayden for energizing yoga that will enhance and refocus the body. Find passion after a long day. Synergy Yoga and Pilates, Mobile. 251-473-1104. Fairhope Bicycle Company Ride: Ladies Night – 6pm. 3 groups: The Katie and Jill-20 mi at 18mph, The PeeWee-20 mi at 15mph, The CC-12 mi at below 15mph. Leave from Fairhope Bicycle Company, 325 S Greeno Rd across from Thomas Hospital in Fairhope. 251-990-7383. $5 Flow Yoga – 6:15pm. Third Thurs each month is “One for the Community.” $5. Yoga Birds, Fairhope. 251-990-3447.

natural awakenings

August 2010


National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Support Group – 6:30pm. Open to individuals, friends and family. The Harbor, Thomas Hospital, Daphne. For more info: NAMI, 251-965-6264. Starry Night Theater – Thru Sept 16. 7pm. Third Thurs each month. Movie at the market. Fairhope’s new open-air theater hosted by the Bay Art Project. Monthly screenings of newly released, awardwinning, independent films. $10 includes popcorn. Beer, wine and food available. Windmill Market, Fairhope. 251-709-0188.

friday Fortis College Massage Clinic – By appointment. Receive a one-hour massage by a highly skilled student. $25. Fortis College, 3590 Pleasant Valley Rd, Mobile. Call for an appointment, 251-344-1203.

Family Fridays – 7am-10pm. Offers children a balloon and coloring page. Free. Smoothie King, 720 Schillinger Rd S, Mobile. 251-633-9033.

classifieds Rates for classifieds start at $16 per month. Listings must be received by the 10th of the month prior to publication. Email for details.

For SALE CURRENTLY PUBLISHING NATURAL AWAKENINGS MAGAZINES – For sale in Boulder, CO; Morris County, NJ; Southwest VA. and Ventura, CA. Call for details, 239-530-1377.

opportunities Become an ONLINE TRAVEL AGENT - Training provided. CoastalDreamsTravel@

Detox Foot Bath Only $49/Mo. $1,500 Water Ionizer $39.95/Mo. Ozone Generator $29.95/ Mo. Handheld Laser $29.95/Mo. 239-649-0077.

services BIONETIC BODY SCAN FOR PEOPLE & PETS – Non-invasive testing for over 10,000 substances in minutes: allergies, parasites, chemicals, metabolism, vitamin deficiencies, emotions, etc. Bring body back into balance. Serving FL/AL Gulf Coast. Cell: 239-560-6667.

Fairhope Bicycle Company Ride: Saturday Morning Shop Ride – 7:30am. 34 mi at 17mph. Leave from Fairhope Bicycle Company, 325 S Greeno Rd across from Thomas Hospital in Fairhope. 251-990-7383.

CAREER IN COSMETOLOGY – Are you a creative individual that has dreamed of a career in cosmetology? Formerly known as Capps College, Fortis College School of Cosmetology can help you reach that dream. Call us today at 251-342-3230.

Fairhope Bicycle Company Ride: Saturday Afternoon Junior’s – 4pm. Frazier Cycling junior’s skill session and ride. Ride groups decided after 1hr skill session. Ages 10-18. Leave from Fairhope Bicycle Company, 325 S Greeno Rd across from Thomas Hospital in Fairhope. 251-990-7383.


IMPROVE YOUR ANIMAL’S HEALTH – Canine and equine acupressure, therapeutic massage, bionetic body scan, muscle testing for allergies, TCM nutrition, intuitive animal communication. Serving FL/AL Gulf Coast. Cell: 239-560-6667.

FRESH PRODUCE AND SEAFOOD – Crab Apple Market now open in Mobile. Featuring Alabama Home Products, Amish Wedding goods, and frozen-prepared seafood items from Coden. 9180 Airport Blvd, 2.5 mi W of Schillinger. 251-635-0067.

NEED CLEAN? GO GREEN! – Green Clean provides environmentally friendly, non-toxic cleaning services for commercial and residential properties. Schedule a free in-home consultation and estimate today. 251-508-3796.

Music at the Market – 11:30am-1:30pm. Third Fri each month. Catt Sirten playing live music at the Windmill Market. Fairhope.

First Friday Artwalk – 6-8pm. First Fri each month. Enjoy an artsy and fun-filled night with an evening of exhibit openings, guest artists and live entertainment throughout beautiful downtown Fairhope. Map of participating venues available at the Eastern Shore Art Center, 401 Oak St, Fairhope. 251-928-2228. First Friday Night Entertainment – 6-9pm. First Fri each month. Leavin Brothers play at the Windmill Market and wine is always free. Food from Mary Ann’s and Moe’s also available. Weekend market vendors will be set-up.

WHY BUY? RENT TO OWN! – $1,250 Ionic


LoDa ArtWalk – 6-9pm. 2nd Fridays in downtown have become quite a popular time and place to be at. With the LoDa ArtWalk in its 4th year, the event seems to be getting better each month. Cathedral Square Arts District, Mobile. 251-208-7443.

saturday Fortis College Student Clinic – By appointment. Receive a one-hour massage from a highly skilled student. $25. Fortis College, 3590 Pleasant Valley Rd, Mobile. Call for an appointment, 251-344-1203. Saturday Morning Yoga – 9am. With Beverley, Adrienne, Faye or Angela. Start the weekend with a revitalizing class. Bring zest back into the day! Synergy Yoga and Pilates, Mobile. 251-473-1104.

Baldwin County Humane Society (BARC) Pet Adoption – 10am-2pm. Third Sat each month. Adoption event. PetSmart, Eastern Shore Center, Spanish Fort. 251-928-4585.


NA Mobile / Baldwin Edition

Locally owned, locally produced and supporting the Mobile / Baldwin economy...naturally! Display Ads  Cover Ads  Specialty Page Ads Classified Ads  Calendar Listings  Directory Listings Call 251-990-9552 or Email

virginia’s health foods AND THE SUNFLOWER CAFE II

naturaldirectory Connecting you to the leaders in natural healthcare and green living in our community. To find out how you can be included in the Natural Directory, email MobilePublisher@ to request our media kit. Rates begin at $36 a month.



Rikki m

Threading Expert Licensed Cosmetologist, Master Stylist 251-508-1983 Threading expert (facial hair removal). 34 years experience Color Correction Specialist. Long hair foil highlights. 20 years experience Brazilian Wax.

churches Conscious Mile Spiritual Center OF MOBILE

Sundays at 10am 1230 Montlimar, Mobile 251-343-0777, Rev. Sherrie Quander invites you to visit a loving, inclusive spiritual community where we aim to make every step we take, every choice we make, every word we speak a conscious one. See ad page 23.

mobile CENTER FOR JOYFUL LIVING 60 N Ann Street Mobile, AL 36695 251-391-6960

The Center for Joyful Living—practicing disorganized religion. Come live the Question with us, Sundays, 10:30am. 251-391-6960.


Green Clean, LLC provides environmentally friendly, non-toxic cleaning services for commercial and residential properties. Regular and deep-cleaning services are available, as well as special services such as organizational assistance. See ad page 13.

Young Living Educator, Sponsor #327923 251-625-0080, Experience the healing, uplifting and detoxifying benefits of therapeutic-grade essential oils and supplements. Contact us for personal consultations, in-home classes, household products, health supplements, diffusers, group presentations and business training.

3952 Airport Blvd, Mobile 251-345-0494 Café 251-345-0495

Supplements, wheat- and gluten-free, organic produce and meats, vegetarian, low carb, sports nutrition, books. Café features a juice bar. Store open 7 days a week. Serving the public 33 years. See ad page 25.

GRAPHIC DESIGN Michael M. Wilson

Creative & Graphic Designer For all of your graphic design needs, including but not limited to websites, logos, brochures, posters, postcards, business cards reports, greeting cards, mailers, newsletters, menus, and door hangers. See ad page 32.


20205 Middle Earth Rd, Citronelle, AL 251-866-7204 Wisdom of the Earth, therapeutic-grade essential essences now available. These high-vibration, 100% pure oils are hand-poured with ritual and ceremony. Consultations and classes are available. See ad page 21.

HEALING ARTS pranic healing in mobile Deana Lannie 251-454-0959

Free healing nights and group meditations every Monday. Pranic Healing classes and the advanced technique of Superbrain Yoga.

FOODS AND SUPPLEMENTS Burris farm market & Bakery 3100 Hickory Street Loxley, AL 36551 251-964-6464

massage therapy FORTIS college

On Hwy 59 on the way to Gulf Shores, AL. Fresh fruits and vegetables, fresh baked strawberry shortcake, ice cream and much more!! Your “first and last” stop to the beach or any other time.

fairhope health foods and the sunflower cafÉ 280 Eastern Shore Shopping Center 251-928-0644 Café 251-929-0055

Comprehensive health food store and organic café, featuring organic food, free-range meat, organic wine. Store open 7 days a week. Serving the public 33 years. See ad page 25.

Student Massage Therapy Center 3590 Pleasant Valley Road, Mobile 251-344-1203, Massage really works. Schedule a therapeutic massage with our Student Clinic. Friday and Saturday appointments, along with some weekday appts. See ad page 4.

Volunteer Opportunities Needed!

Natural Awakenings wants to help with volunteer recruitment. If you are in need of volunteers, contact us with your projects today. It’s free!

251-990-9552 MobilePublisher@

natural awakenings

August 2010



wellness products


PET PORTRAITS FROM YOUR PHOTOS Art by Mer Fairhope, AL 601-918-2833,

sacro wedgy®

FORTIS college

5650 Old Pascagoula Rd, #203 Mobile, AL 251-653-9258 800-737-9295

Massage Therapy Program of Study 3590 Pleasant Valley Rd, Mobile 251-344-1203,

Back pain? Sciatica? Poor posture? SacroWedgy has worked when all else may have failed. Simple, economical self-help. Testimonials & info at See ad page 25.

Train for a career as a professional Massage Therapist. 1,060-hour program. Fortis offers the most comprehensive and in-depth training in the region. See ad page 4.

Commission a portrait of your pet. Portraits are original acrylic on canvas paintings from your photos. View online gallery for examples. Gift certificates are available. See ad page 14.

shelton academy

1050 Hillcrest Rd, Mobile AL 36695 251-639-1311



No entrance/exit exam. Work at own pace. Get diploma whenever you complete all requirements. One-on-one instruction. Small classes, Grades 5-12. School MondayThursday, 8 a.m. - 12 p.m. Fully Accredited. See article page 32.

251-716-9699 Lifestyle portraits and wedding photography.


458-B North Section Street, Fairhope 251-990-3447 Fairhope’s yoga studio and boutique with yoga classes for everyone: Anusara-Inspired®, Foundations, Vinyasa Flow, Restorative, Chair Yoga, weekend workshops and more. View full schedule and sign-up for classes and special events at See ad page 2.


251-625-0080 Daphne, AL 850-380-4943 Pensacola, FL,

sustainable living

Upcoming Workshops: August 1 in Daphne; August 21 and 22 in Tallahassee, FL. Certification in Ingham Reflexology through the International Institute of Reflexology. 16 CEUs per workshop. Available to everyone, these workshops provide education in better health naturally. Young Living Essential Oil Education also available.


First Conservation Community in Gulf South, Located in Baldwin County 251-937-3276 Minutes from Pensacola, Mobile and Gulf Only 25 homesites, more than 1,100 protected acres. Rolling hills up to 275 feet. 20 miles of equestrian trails.

For more information about advertising and how you can participate, call


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natural awakenings

August 2010


e l t r u t val i t s

se a fe

th ef i

al u n n a t rs

Saturday, September 11 10am-2pm Gulf State Park Pavilion

An event to celebrate and raise awareness of the sea turtles on Alabama’s beaches.


Childrens Wellness